Horror Movie Pairings for Pesky Moods

I’ve been a bit… emotional lately, to say the least, in ways that I’m sure have absolutely nothing to do with the current socioeconomic state of affairs or my recent surgery to treat a chronic condition that may soon be even more difficult to treat thanks to a certain SCOTUS ruling that I won’t rehash right here right now. At one point I remarked to Trav that a certain terrifyingly CGIed human-vampire hybrid baby and epic-though-imaginary battle would probably turn my gloomy mood on its head. And boy, did it.

This got me to thinking: if my existential slump could be comforted by whatever meaning Breaking Dawn Part 2 tried to attribute to life, what other movies are just waiting in the wings to rescue us from the brink of emotional extremism?****

****Dear god, please do not confuse anything in this article for any kind of professional medical or psychiatric advice.

Imposter Syndrome

If you’re anything like me immediately seek therapy then you’ve surely at some point convinced yourself that whatever you have achieved in life is the direct result of people misinterpreting how awesome you are (not).

Let me first share with you the best advice for reframing my thoughts that I ever received. When I say something to myself that borders on the harsher side I ask how I would feel if someone said this to my best friend. If they’d be catching some hands, then I know I probably shouldn’t say those things about myself, and that it’s probably my depression goblin seeking his own validation.

Once you’ve tentatively made the deal with yourself to chill the f*** out, throw on some Bloody Murder (2000). We covered it on our most recent Tubi or Not To Be and I honestly found myself falling in love with this movie. It is immediately evident how many movies it is pulling from, most obviously Friday the 13th, which itself was an attempt to recreate the success of Halloween. Bloody Murder is fun, and more importantly it shows us that you don’t have to be the first or the best at doing something to be successful – you just have to be able to do it. There are people out there who will appreciate it.


Maybe everything feels kind of pointless tonight. Like, yea you’ll eat dinner – but who really cares what? It’ll be the same shit you’ve had on rotation for months. Nothing’s bad, but nothing’s great. Rinse and repeat for the other tasks, chores, etc. in your life.

I present to you: Society (1989). Without giving anything away, you’ll find yourself whispering whatthefuckwhatthefuckwhatthefuck even after the credits have rolled. Watching this film is a brand new experience and the aura of, ahem, newness will stick with you and shake things up for a while.


Not all feelings are bad. Sometimes you’ve had a great day: you ran out of bubble gum but it’s okay because you kicked ass. I know this blog post aims to pair movies with pesky moods, but is it not pesky to not be able to ride that kind of emotional high?

While it may be an obvious choice coming from me, but I’m gonna need you to throw on some Scream (1996). This is the movie that ushered in a new era of self-referential teen slashers because it knows how to have FUN. And if you want to keep feeling like you can conquer anything, who better to spend your time with than Sydney Prescott?

Scream Screen 2021: Week 1 (10/1-10/7)

10.1: Halloween (2007)

Trav’s pick

Rating: What is the perfect Halloween candy pairing for this Rob Zombie remake of the John Carpenter classic?

Jess: Take 5. It’s a new take on an old classic, and there is a lot going on, but I don’t hate it.

Trav: Twizzlers. I originally hated this movie, but it grew on me and lately it’s become one of my favorite entries in the series…much like Twizzlers have with me.

10.2: Among Friends (2012)

Jess’s pick

Rating: What party game is the best pairing for this Danielle Harris directed flick?

Jess: Monopoly, mostly cuz everyone is being an ass.

Trav: Mario Party, ’cause this game makes you realize how shitty your friends really are.

10.3: Frankenhooker (1990)

Trav’s pick

Rating: For this Troma special, we ask: what is the perfect power tool pairing?

Jess: Well, we all know I love a power drill. And “drill” does seem to be the operative word…

Trav: I recommend the tool that seemed to be missing on screen yet is very crucial to the story: The buzz saw.

10.4: Bait (2012)

Jess’s pick

Rating: What grocery shopping trip staple pairs perfectly with this Australian shark attack thriller?

Jess: Pasta sauce, but something spicy like arrabiatta, because it is pretty standard but still has a little kick

Trav: Milk and bread, ’cause if there’s anything I’ve learned from extreme weather events it’s that you gotta stock up on those two for whatever reason.

10.5: Maniac Cop (1988) [The Last Drive-In version]

Trav’s pick

Rating: For our first TLDI rewatch of the month – one filled with TLDI legends and featuring guest Bruce Campbell – we will be pairing this killer cop thriller with another TLDI guest.

Jess: I think the frantic passion of Maniac Cop can only be paired properly with recurring guest Chris Jericho.

Trav: Maniac Cop is a movie that hits all the typical slasher beats, but has a pleasant quirkiness that makes it feel unique and genuine. So I’ll go with Clint Howard, the most down to earth and honest guest on the show so far.

10.6: V/H/S/94

Neutral/joint pick – anticipated new release

Rating: What beloved childhood VHS are you pairing with this newly released anthology horror?

Jess: Probably my Muppet Babies tape because I remember it actually not working at one point after watching it so much, and this is one of the V/H/S series that I will come back to over and over again.

Trav: Gotta go with the old school Dragon Ball Z VHS tapes from back in the day. Each set’s spines combined into a nice image from the series. All very nostalgic, just like this movie was for me.

10.7: Cry_Wolf (2005)

Jess’s pick

Rating: In honor of JBJ getting shot through the heart, what dad rock anthem pairs perfectly with this mid-aughts slasher?

Jess: I’m going with Don’t Stop Believing. Is it good? I don’t really know. But much like every radio station has decided with the Journey single, this movie is a classic for me.

Trav: I’m choosing AC/DC’s You Shook Me All Night because most of their songs sound the same, what with the guitar riffs and all. Much like slashers from the 2000’s were all kinda the same, what with the Jared Padalecki and all.

Scream Screen 2021: An Introduction

For the past several years we, like most horror fans, have acknowledged as October the holy month it is and watch a horror movie (or more) a night. While some fans will create their dream lineup ahead of time, we choose to instead go night by night, taking turns on who gets to pick the move for the night. No one gets a veto unless it is for a valid reason (e.g. when I was in grad school with a paper deadline and we couldn’t realistically follow a subbed movie).

Each year we keep track of our picks and find some arbitrary rating system. One year it was emojis, another it was gifs. One year we each wrote a single sentence review of each night’s movie. We have titled this practice our annual Scream Screen.

We’ve decided to track our schedule publicly this year, just to share with you – our dear community. We will post each Friday in October (plus a final post on or around 11/1).

Our arbitrary rating system? Our perfect pairing for a movie. It’ll be something different for each: drinks, snacks, another movie, mindless hobbies, or whatever other oddity comes to mind. For example:

9.25: Scream (1996)

Jess’s Pick

What true crime coverage media pairs perfectly with this Wes Craven staple?

Jess: Bailey Sarian for sure. There’s no way that Billy and Stu wouldn’t want all the coverage they can get, especially in unexpected spaces like Beau-Tube.

Trav: Evil Genius, cause I’m sure the docuseries on Stu and Billy would be just as weird