Written by Jonathan Wojcik

Five Miscellaneous Finds!

   These days, I'm weird about what is and isn't worth making an "article" out of; I like to be able to say a lot about something, or at least put a lot of similar things together in the same article, but I'm probably the only one out of our whole arrangement that actually cares, and I've picked up a lot of little odds and ends this year from a lot of different sources. The last time I did a post like this, you wound up with the Skilevak.

Mini Bobblers

   These came in bags of twelve from that Nobbies party store, including a less interesting vampire and frankenstein's monster, but it's these three that make the whole set worth getting. Only about an inch tall and made from hard plastic, you've got a pumpkin with eyelashes in a ratty dress, a grumpy little fanged skeleton holding some sort of nondescript box, and a...bale of hay? I guess it's sort of supposed to be a scarecrow, but it reminds me more of some makeshift sacrificial effigy. I'd say he's the coolest of the bunch, but it's hard to pick which one is the most adorable. The skeleton obviously looks like the token troublemaker of the bunch, but appearances aren't everything. Who's to say the pumpkin girl isn't the devious rule-breaker, always hatching some complex scheme to make life more difficult for other cute little monsters and possibly roping the well-meaning but airheaded wicker voodoo guy into being her sidekick. You would watch it.

Decapitating Monster Dolls

   Currently available at target, the heads on these guys are attached by both velcro and a pull-string, which activates their voice chips. Try to tear their heads off, and they scream and protest about it like little weiners. It's kind of unusual for the skeleton to have the least interesting design; that clown is just splendidly ghastly, and the zombie is simply wonderful, with his freaky eyes, exposed fuzzy brain and dribbling blood. I've certainly found a lot of cute, interesting and uniquely designed zombies this year, and right after my rant last year about how it was a dying art.

Plush Zombie Nurse

   And again! I don't think I've ever seen so many goofy, cartoonish zombies flooding the market all at once, and it's about damn time. This is part of a set of plush dog toys available at Petco, and while the others are relatively forgettable, you can never go wrong with a zombie nurse, as we've previously discussed, and they've given this one such an endearingly comical corpse-look, too. I just wonder what's holding those pigtails to her head, unless she just steals them from live victims whenever they need refreshing.

Maybe they're just huge, black worms.

Solar Ghost

   I've always been a big fan, in theory, of these solar-powered decorations with giant flashlight eyes, but they're almost always the same old owls and cats. Despite how cool it is for any given monster to have huge, round, glowing eyeballs, this is the first time I've seen one of these in anything but a realistic skull, pumpkin or spooky animal, and I'm very pleased that this is more than just your run-of-the-mill, everyday white ghost. It's actually supposed to look like a gourd, with little sculpted cracks and imperfections, but it just comes across as a really weird, slightly filthy little peanut-shaped phantasm with the most delightful weird mouth. It doesn't even look like a spooky, ghostly moan so much as an utterly ridiculous look of brainless awe and wonderment.

"Vampire" Dog Costume

   This is currently for sale at every single Wal-Mart in the country, and it is supposed to be a "vampire" "costume" for a small dog. In other words, a cape. A cape with a big-lipped vampire face directly on it. What does that even mean? They even provide a picture of how stupid awesome your dog would look in this thing:

   Look at that. How much do you want a tiny, weird dog just to dress it up in a cape with a big, dumb googly-eyed vampire face on it? I'm sure you already know how I interpret this. That the vampire is obviously the cape itself, and not the dog. That it's basically a Cloaker from Dungeons and Dragons pretending to be a really ridiculous and nonsensical dog costume.

How the mighty have fallen.