We’ve all seen them. They’re inescapable. Their headlines draw us like a moth to flame with their promise of economic, streamlined order. “They” are The Listicle. A collection of items in article form, listed, that serve a purpose of unifying themselves within a specific category. Sometimes they’re listed in the order of worst to best…sometimes they piss you off. One thing they all have in common? They exist as one writer’s opinion. Across the web you can find them ranking everything from makeup brushes, wine, adult diapers, and even listicles that detail the various “types” of listicle. It’s enough to make your head spin, Regan style. We endure, however, because we the people need to know! On this site, we feature plenty of cool, thought-provoking “Top 10” and “Best Of” lists. But, what about you hardcore junkies out there who need a serious fix of the overly specific, “no one asked for this” type of information? I got the hit that you seek here on “Listicle of Death.” I’ll be drilling down to find out the best “Deaths by Ice Cream,” or the “Best ‘Oh, No! I’ve Discovered the Killer’s Lair!’ Slasher Film Moments.” Yep…specific.
February 9th is the celebration of National Pizza Day! Just what does that mean? I’m not really sure. Go order a pizza? Probably. Oh, look, TODAY.com has a listicle breaking down the best deals to be found on pizza today. What better opportunity to kick off “Listicle of Death” than the celebration of National Pizza Day (which was originally brought to my attention due to my awesome Lunchmeat VHS calendar). So, I submit to you fiendish reader the “Top 5 Horrific Pizzas!”
#5 Wetlands (2014)
Wetlands isn’t a horror movie, that’s why it landed itself in the number five spot. That said, based off several different variables such as your personal comfort level with more adult subject matter and the more fluid aspects of the human body – Wetlands could very much horrify you. It’s a coming of age film about female sexual liberation that doesn’t shy away from placing menstrual blood in an erotic context. So, yeah, if you seek that out, you’ve been “trigger warned.” The scene that lands this story on the list had audiences clutching their pearls when the film played at various film festivals. Our lead character is fantasizing about the pizza version of l limp biscuit…with a circle of men around a pizza doing…you know. The scene was reportedly shot with actual porn stars and the high speed, slow-mo photography of the ejaculate soaring towards the cheesy layer of a spinach pizza – was apparently the real stuff, some of it at least. Not everyone could stomach it.
#4 Offerings (1989)
This rarely seen, regional Halloween rip-off is a load of fun in the cheeseball department. One of our commenters reminded me of its existence recently regarding the pizza connection. The killer, John Radley, wakes from his near comatose state one night, escapes from the comfy confines of his mental institution, and decides to exact revenge on the kids who drove him nutso to begin with. There’s a great moment where the teens get frustrated that their pizza hasn’t arrived yet. After an aggravated call to the pizza place, they hear the doorbell. On the doorstep is the pizza but no delivery person in sight. As the teens begin devouring slice after slice, they begin to notice an extra mystery ingredient they state looks like sausage. Our lead Southern fried valley girl proclaims, “Sausage?! I didn’t order any sausage!” No, you most certainly didn’t. Of course, it turns out that bonus topping was the remnants of one of the killer’s earlier victims. Kids, never eat random pizza you find on your porch. Just don’t do it.
#3 The Slumber Party Massacre (1982)
The Slumber Party Massacre has grown to be one of my favorite slasher flicks from the early 80’s. As a kid, I found it to be boring. As an adult, I’m able to pick up on the dry humor and feminist themes sprinkled throughout. Yes, it’s still a Roger Corman pic with shoddy effects and T&A, but it works. We also have another ill-fated pizza delivery guy. When the girls answer the door, the delivery boy can be seen with both eyes gouged out. His body, along with the pie, comes falling into the house. The girls quickly shut and lock the door. Later on, as they try and regroup from the multiple slayings, the character of Jackie gets a bit hungry. What follows is one of the greatest exchanges in slasher history. In the scene, the dead delivery guy is on the floor with the box of pizza set atop his corpse.
Kim: “He’s dead alright…so cold.”
Jackie: “But is the pizza?”
Kim: “You can’t eat the dead guy’s pizza!”
Jackie: “Well, life goes on after all and eating makes me feel best when I feel bad, and boy do I feel bad.” She takes a bite of the Dead Guy’s Pizza. “I feel better already. Really, I do.”
Bonus: There’s another pizza delivery-related death in Slumber Party Massacre III. It’s interesting as the original film almost exclusively places females in traditionally masculine job positions…except that of the Pizza Delivery Guy. In Part III, that oversight is rectified with a Pizza Delivery Girl.
#2 House IV (1992)
I don’t really know what to say about this one. I had a vague memory of this scene as a child that haunted me for years. All I knew is it was from a movie I’d stayed up far too late to watch one night, likely on USA, and a talking pizza terrified me. I mean, if pizza wasn’t sacred in a horror film than what was? Pizza was my Friday night meal, and now at any moment I could open up that greasy cardboard box to bare witness to a harbinger of pure terror. I couldn’t deal. Talk about kindertrauma. You’ve been warned. Watch the below clip at your own risk. 😉
#1 A Nightmare on Elm Street 4: Dream Master (1988)
Obviously, the #1 stunner had to go to the man, the myth, the legend, Freddy Krueger. Trapped in the dream realm, Alice comes face to face with an aged version of herself, stuck working at a rundown diner. Naturally, Freddy can’t let the torture of facing one’s mortality be enough. He has to literally try and serve her a slice of loved ones lost. It’s a truly grotesque image that lingered with me as a kid, much like House IV above. Perhaps, I just have a severe reaction against sentient pizza. Old Alice serves up a large, greasy pie to young Alice. It’s your average pizza, except in addition to gooey cheese there are the faces of various souls collected by the Dream Demon. Each face appears like a little meatball just waiting to be devoured…which, of course, Freddy does.
There you have it! Enjoy your National Pizza Day and perhaps, think twice about sitting down with one of these flicks tonight during dinner. Now, in future pizza related horror, we still have A24’s Slice to look forward to.