Bogleech Halloween Classics:


DISCOVERED: Dollar Tree, 2006

Jonathan Wojcik

   This is one of those items I kept glossing over until the sheer strangeness of it started gnawing my brain; a thin, flimsy piece of plastic in the shape of a monster, bound simultaneously by ropes and chains in some sort of hardcore outdoor bondage scenario? If it were a more realistic, gruesome decoration, it would be par for the course. Halloween prop outlets offer all sorts of morbid, borderline fetishistic dungeon imagery, but these are clearly designed to be child-friendly, assuming you want to give trick-or-treaters a head start in discovering their future kinks.

   You're expected to tie your monster up to a tree, then stuff the included plastic "rope" with something and wrap that around for added effect. I can tell you it does not look at all as good as their faked photographs, assuming you even needed anybody to tell you that, and why are the ropes all that necessary when their arms are in a bundle of chains a foot thick? Their plastic sheet bodies display a lot better just tacked to a wall, anyhow.

   There were three different designs to choose from, the least interesting of which - to me, anyhow - was this dopey looking Frankenstein's monster. His black and orange, frilly coat with bright green pockets is an interesting fashion choice, at least. The tree savvy will know that they specifically used a palm tree for this picture. Of all the trees to tie a monster to, a palm tree is probably the funniest. Who the hell is running a BDSM monster club in the middle of Florida?

   When it comes to hanging anything by chains, a skeleton is pretty much always the top possible choice, and you may as well put a floppy little purple hat on it, too. If you haven't noticed by now, all of these monsters are both smiling and sweating in what appears to be nervous yet eager anticipation, unless it's just that Florida heat. Never mind how a skeleton sweats.

   Finally, we come to the witch, the one that, for me, really exemplifies how inappropriate these actually are. Skeletons and monsters are one thing, yeah, but witchcraft or no witchcraft, this one is literally just a nervous, sweaty woman chained to a tree. No matter how hard the artwork wants to be child-friendly, it's a failure both in and out of context.

I gotta say, though, between the disheveled purple hair, stripey socks and curly high heels, she's cute enough that I honestly couldn't say no. Really, I couldn't say no to any of these monsters asking me to please tie them to a palm tree, even if I know that they think I don't know exactly what way they're into it. They're monsters. Of course they're gonna be creeps.