“Maybe they’re not going to have Halloween next year.”
As I’ve already stated a couple times here on Bloody Disgusting this month, I am a huge fan of Halloween 3: Season of the Witch. It’s unquestionably my favorite sequel in the entire Halloween franchise, and it’s genuinely one of my all-time favorite horror movies. I’ve already watched it three times this month. I might be a little obsessed.
Each time I watch the film, I wonder to myself what happens directly after the events we see. It’s completely open to interpretation, but we’re left wondering whether or not Dan Challis was able to convince the final television station airing the Silver Shamrock commercial to pull the plug. Does Challis save the children? Or do they all die?
Tom Atkins himself, as stated on the “making of” featurette on Scream Factory’s must-own Blu-ray release of Halloween 3, believes that the film has a happy ending, but most fans seem to feel that it’s anything but happy. I’ve gone back and forth about this over the years, and this year, I decided to take it upon myself to write my own conclusion.
In this original short story, I imagine what would happen if Halloween 3 went on 10-15 minutes longer than it did. Of course, this is nothing more than fan fiction at the end of the day, but when I imagine what happens after Challis gets off the phone, this is what I see. Whether you want to read or not, I’d love to hear what YOU think happens after the film.
Oh and Happy Halloween!
THE FINAL OCTOBER, by John Squires
The nauseating Silver Shamrock jingle ringing in his ears, Dr. Dan Challis begged and pleaded the final station to pull the plug and end the nightmare.
“Stop it! Stop it!! STOP IT!!!” he screamed with increasing intensity.
It was all for naught.
Challis gave up. The telephone smashed onto the floor and he watched helplessly, mouth agape, as the three children in the gas station suffered the same fate as Little Buddy Kupfer. He tried to rip the masks off their heads, but by then, he was reaching his hands into puddles of hot latex and blood. Then came the bugs. Then the snakes. He had seen it happen before, but it was no less horrifying the second time.
The doctor felt bad that he couldn’t bring himself to cry at the sight of three children dying right in front of him, but he had bigger things on his mind. He remembered that his own two children, a young boy and a young girl, were surely home watching the Silver Shamrock commercial they had been waiting all week for. He hoped that they hadn’t figured to switch the channel when one signal cut out, but he knew deep down that they were smarter than that.
They were sure they were going to win the big giveaway.
Challis commandeered the nearest car and raced home like the madman Conal Cochran had forced him to become, carelessly flipping between the radio stations as he desperately tried to remain on the road. He expected to hear an endless stream of horrifying news on the radio, but he found only that damned Silver Shamrock jingle on each and every channel. At this point, Challis wasn’t even sure if what he was hearing was real or if he truly had lost his mind somewhere in Santa Mira.
Zero more days till Halloween. Halloween. Halloween.
Zero more days till Halloween.
With each house that Challis drove past, he imagined what was going on inside. He imagined the lifeless corpses of children sprawled out in front of television sets. He imagined cockroaches and serpents pouring out of their mouths and eyes. He needed a drink and he needed that drink more than he ever needed a drink in his life. In between all the horror going on in his head, Challis even thought about Ellie Grimbridge. Sweet Ellie Grimbridge. What a doll she was. Great in bed, too. But what the hell happened to her anyway? Cochran must’ve killed her. Killed her and replaced her with that evil robot.
‘What a strange thing to do,’ Challis thought to himself.
But before he could think too much about Cochran’s wacky plans for world domination, Challis arrived at his destination. He parked the car out front of his ex-wife’s house, and cautiously went inside.
As he opened the front door, Challis had two visions playing in his mind: one of what he hoped to see, and one of what he was pretty sure he was going to see. In the first vision, his children were sleeping peacefully in their beds. They had survived Halloween night, and would live to trick or treat again.
But that wasn’t what he saw.
Challis was met with a strange, overpowering stench. Oddly enough, the house smelled like a rotten pumpkin. And in front of the television, as he had seen in that second vision, his children were lying dead on the carpet. Like Little Buddy and the kids in the gas station, their heads were melted down into puddles of mush. He could barely even tell which child was which. Beside them lay the two cheap plastic masks he had purchased for them just one week prior: a cruel reminder that they had almost been spared.
If only his ex-wife hadn’t upstaged him by buying those stupid masks. If only.
As was always the case in tough situations, such as the night his wife told him she could no longer deal with him “flirting” behind her back, Challis’ first instinct was to find the nearest bottle of booze and make it disappear. He was numb. Completely numb. And his only comfort in that moment was the bottle of scotch he found in the liquor cabinet. It was already half empty by the time he got to it, but even if it was completely full and ten times the size it was, it still wouldn’t have been enough.
Challis thought to call 911, but he figured it would be a waste of time. After all, his kids certainly weren’t the only ones who didn’t make it through Halloween. Hell, nearly every kid in America had become a cruel Silver Shamrock test subject overnight. And so he didn’t pick up the phone. Whole lot of good the phone did him last time he picked it up. Instead, he drank. He drank until there was nothing left to drink.
As of 9pm on Halloween night, 1982, the population of children in America had been cut down, within the span of just 30-seconds, by nearly 60%. The only lucky kids were the kids who had initially felt quite unlucky about the fact that their parents couldn’t afford one of those pumpkin, skull, or witch masks that year. They hated their parents for being so cheap, for not being able to get them what they wanted, but on the morning of November 1st, that resentment was going to be washed away with the realization that their parents’ financial troubles were the only thing that kept them alive. An irony not lost even on those too young to understand what irony was.
Sitting on the couch, empty bottle of scotch clutched tightly in his hand, Challis noted how peculiar it was that the house wasn’t filled, as he expected, with bugs and snakes. He also realized that he hadn’t even thought about where his ex-wife might be. He didn’t much care about her well-being in that moment, but he did at least wonder where she was. Had she run out of the house screaming when all hell broke loose? She always did have a knack for bolting when things got too heavy.
And oh boy was this situation a heavy one.
Challis began to fade into an alcohol-induced semi-coma when he heard a loud knock at the door. The banging shattered the eerie stillness of the night, and it wasn’t the only new sound in the room. Over by the television, Challis heard strange sloshing sounds. And in the wake of the sounds came movement. The dead bodies of Challis’ children began to twitch and convulse, as if something inside of them was desperately trying to get out. Challis looked on in wide-eyed horror.
The knocking intensified.
His eyes frantically darting from the door to whatever the hell was going on over by the TV, Challis realized that nothing good was about to happen. No matter who was at the door and no matter what was going on with his children’s ravaged bodies, he knew he had better be prepared for a fight. He stumbled into the bedroom and retrieved his shotgun from the closet. He had left it behind when his wife kicked him out, and he never did get around to picking it up. He was surprised that it was right where he left it; she had threatened to get rid of it more times than he could count.
Challis returned to the living room and pointed the shotgun at the bodies; at this point, he refused to even identify them, within his own mind, as his once-happy children. Challis watched and waited for the worst. The bodies continued to jerk violently. The sounds of unnatural birth grew only louder.
The transformation had begun. The final step in Cochran’s master plan.
Suddenly, the front door was knocked clean off its hinges. It landed with a thud onto the ground, and within a moment, there was a man standing atop it. He was dressed in a tailored suit. His hands were covered in black gloves. His face was blank. Pale. Emotionless. Challis knew immediately who it was. Or rather, what it was. He knew what color it would bleed if he blasted it with his shotgun.
And he did. Challis unloaded several shells into Cochran’s henchman. As he anticipated, yellow explosions erupted from the robot’s body. He aimed squarely at the lifeless shape’s head and fired one more shot. Yellow goo and what looked like car parts decorated the wall behind the man. His mostly headless body fell to the ground. Gears turned. Clicked. Grinded. And then silence.
Behind Challis, the bodies of his children imploded from within. It was as if portals to another dimension had been opened up inside of them. Tearing through their clothes, their guts, and their flesh, two very inhuman creatures began to emerge. They looked like bugs. Massive bugs. They were wet. Covered in the innards of the bodies they came from. Challis was watching his own children literally give birth to otherworldly creatures, and he couldn’t believe he was actually awake. Not even in his nightmares did he ever encounter such a nightmare. Legs emerged. Arms emerged. Their full forms were slowly being revealed, and Challis was sure that Cochran had discovered and unlocked the gateway to Hell.
Challis fired two shots in rapid succession. Both targets were hit. The insect-like heads of the Silver Shamrock creatures exploded all over the television behind them. Challis continued to blast away at the monsters, intent on ensuring that they were dead. Each shotgun blast sent smaller bugs flying all over the living room. The creatures were filled with other creatures, and those creatures were now being unleashed. Cockroaches spilled from the gaping shotgun wounds. Snakes slithered out.
Dawn was breaking. The eerie orange glow of the early morning sky seeped into the living room through the empty space once blocked off by the door. Armed with his shotgun, Challis walked through the frame and out into the neighborhood. He saw adults running for their lives. Men and women being chased down and savagely attacked by the creatures that had emerged from their own children. It was complete chaos. Cochran, though he didn’t live to see it, had taken over the world. Halloween wouldn’t be happening next year and it wouldn’t be happening the year after that. Halloween was over. And if what was happening in California was any indication, so too was humanity. So too was the world.
And indeed it was happening all over the world. It was happening in Dayton, Ohio. In New York, New York. In Omaha, Nebraska. In Baton Rouge, Louisiana. In Seattle, Washington. In Phoenix, Arizona.
The children were dead. The adults were dying.
Challis made his way into the street and dropped to his knees. His shotgun was out of shells, and the creatures were closing in. He knew that his time was up. He had fought all night, but he couldn’t fight it any longer. Like one last cruel joke, a familiar jingle rung loud in his ears, as if it was being beamed down from the heavens. Or perhaps up from the very depths of Hell…
Happy happy Halloween.
Happy happy Halloween.