So Sayeth the Odinson: Countdown to Halloween 2020: Part 1 of 5 – Teenage Monster Bashers

Greetings from the Odinson,

It’s that time of year, folks, when the weather turns cool, the leaves change color, and the ghosts and ghouls stalk the earth.  Yes, glorious Halloween Season is once again upon us and the Odinson is going to countdown to his favorite night of the year with a look at some of the most original horror tales of the modern era, a Marvel Monster that may destroy everything he touches, the peculiar predicament of the Evil Twin, and unconventional slasher stories. 

But first, we begin our countdown by taking a look, and being thankful, for those brave gangs of teens that stand up to the macabre and face down the things that go bump in the night.

Countdown to Halloween 2020: Part 1 of 5 – Teenage Monster Bashers

These are the gangs of teens that track down the ghosts, hunt for pirate treasure, and stake the vampires all the while solving mysteries, saving the neighborhood, and learning important life lessons like the Wolfman has nards!

The OG Scoobies – Since 1969, every generation of kids has grown up cheering the sleuthing exploits of lovable Scooby-Doo and his pals as they travel the country visiting supernatural hot spots and solving mysteries.  Alongside neckerchief-wearing pretty boy Fred, kung fu-kicking pretty girl Daphne, wicked smart Velma, and best-friend Shaggy, Scooby-Doo has solved countless whodunits and faced down every creepy masked villain, menacing monster, and ghastly spirit from The Creeper to the Ghost of Captain Cutler

I think it’s safe to say that every entry that follows on this list was in some way or another inspired by Scooby and his pals.        

The Castle Rock Boys – In the summer of 1960, aspiring teenage writer Gordie, along with his best friends – Chris, Teddy, and Vern – embark on a coming of age quest to discover the body of a boy their age that was struck by a train.  Along the way they face many challenges and perils including Chopper the junkyard dog with a penchant for attacking the holiest of areas on the male anatomy, train dodging, fun-time-ruining leeches, and a dangerous gang of switchblade-wielding toughs.   

The Goonies – When they were a kid, every Gen-Xer wanted to be a Goonie.  We all loaded up a backpack with supplies, hopped on our bikes, and searched for lost treasure in the woods with our friends.  That was the premise of this classic 1985 film that sees Mikey and his misfit gang set out on a harrowing quest to find the long-lost missing treasure of the notorious pirate One-Eyed Willy.  Along the way they must survive certain death and bypass deadly booby-traps set up by the pirate, befriend the monstrous Sloth, and try to stay one step ahead of the criminal Fratelli Family.     

The Losers Club – The Losers are a band of seven kids that unfortunately grew up in Derry, Maine, a small town with a mysterious and dark history rooted in the macabre and haunted by a primordial creature that once a generation rises from the shadows to feed on the locals.  This creature is simply known as It.  What is ItIt is everything and anything someone is afraid of.  It is a shapeshifting force of darkness that takes on the form of your deepest, darkest fears whether that be Frankenstein’s Monster, JAWs, a giant spider, or Pennywise the Clown.  Twice now, once as children and again as adults, Bill, Beverly, Ben, and the rest of the Losers have assembled to face down It and send it screeching back to the shadows from wince it came.      

The Dream Warriors – For years, the dream demon Freddy Kruger used his supernatural powers to invade dreams, hunt and torture, and ultimately consume the souls of the children of Elm Street.  Then, Nancy Thompson, the one girl that stood her ground, returned and showed the kids of Elm Street they could fight back.  They soon realized that in their dreams they have power.  So, the acrobatic Kristen, the super strong Kincaid, the knife-wielding Taryn, Will the wizard, and Joey, the teen with the super-sonic voice, joined forces with Nancy to face down Freddy in the ultimate dream battle!    

The Frog Brothers – Santa Carla, a beach town located on the coast of southern California, is the murder capitol of the world, and there’s a good reason for it – all the damn vampires.  Luckily, the citizens of Santa Carla have the Frog Brothers.  Mild-manner comic book shop owners by day and lean, mean monster bashers by night, the Frog Brothers, along with comic book super fan Sam and Sam’s fledgling vampire brother, Michael, come prepared with all the right tools to defeat the blood-suckers in all their guises.  The only question left is how much they are going to charge you for their services.

The Monster Squad – What if the Goonies battled the Universal Monsters?  That’s the question that is answered in this beloved cult classic that sees a gang of monster movie-loving teens suddenly faced with the task of stopping Dracula, the Wolfman, the Mummy, and the Creature from the Black Lagoon from taking over the world!  Luckily, Phoebe, the little sister of Sean, the leader of the Monster Squad, is bringing a ringer to the fight in the form of Frankenstein’s Monster

The Scoobies of SunnydaleBuffy Summers is the Chosen One, the one girl in all the world that possesses the strength and skills to protect mankind against the vampires, the demons, and the forces of darkness, and she does not fight this never-ending battle alone.  Standing beside her against the evil denizens of the Hellmouth is her best friends Willow the witch and Xander the master of mirth (and the Snoopy Dance), her mentor Giles, Oz the werewolf, and her boyfriend, Angel, the vampire with a soul.    

The Heroes of Starcourt Mall – When mad scientists cannot leave well enough alone the barrier that separates worlds is breached and the Upside Down invades our world.  Fortunately, Mike, Dustin, Lucas, and Will, a group of Dungeons and Dragons-loving teens, join forces with the mysterious Eleven, a teen with immense psionic powers, and various other locals to draw a line in the sand and face down the Demogorgon, the Mind-Flayer, and whatever else the Upside Down can throw at them.    

An Honorable Mention has to go out to Scotty Smalls and the Boys of the Sandlot and the bravery and ingenuity they showed when faced with the harrowing task of retrieving a lost treasure in the form of a baseball that belongs to Small’s dad that is signed by Babe Ruth and being guarded by the monstrous English Mastiff simply known as The Beast.

Next week, the Odinson continues his countdown to Halloween 2020 with a look at some of the most original horror tales of the modern era.

This is Odinson bidding thee farewell     

NOTE: Be sure to check out my book – Autumn Dawn: A Glen Haven Tale.  Available in Paperback, on Kindle, and Audiobook.

About Odinson

I am a lifelong comics fan and pop culture enthusiast. Comic books, novels, games, television, movies, I love it all. From fantasy to science fiction, drama to comedy, as long as the writing and execution are interesting, I love it, and I want to talk about it.

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