It would be too simple -- cliché even -- to put up yet another Halloween blog list replete with death-metal videos and their rampant devil horns or any goth ones with their ghostly pallor abounding. What really tickles our pickle is the unintentional spook -- the spine-tingling affright that comes out of nowhere. An unsettling, unhinged affection that unnerves in the ever so subtle of ways.
So instead of giving you yet another ode to the horrors of Michael Jackson's "Thriller" or Aphex Twin's "Come to Daddy," there are plenty of music videos that are terrifying by accident. Somehow, whether it be in a slightly demented stare or simply an earnest attempt at artistic vision, these still freak us out as much as a knife-wielding Michael Myers did in Halloween.
Here is a list of the top six most unintentionally spooky videos on the planet.
6. Tiny Tim - "Tiptoe Through the Tulips"
Although originally recorded in 1929, this enigmatic folk-rocker made "Tiptoe Through the Tulips" his own in 1968, charting it at number 17 that year. Towering over his minute ukelele, Tim embodies that inadvertent creepiness we were alluding to earlier with his heartfelt bizarro spirit. His warbling, screechingly high falsettos and outlandish demeanor leave an imprint in one's mind that's hard to shake. So haunting is Tiny Tim's trembling voice that this song is featured prominently in recent horror flick Insidious.
5. They Might Be Giants - "Birdhouse in Your Soul"
From the 1990 major-label debut of unconventional-pop group They Might Be Giants comes this quirky ditty that turns the safety provided by a child nightlight and flips it on its head. Taken from the nightlight's point of view, the humorist group turns a device that offers assurance and security to kids into something a wee bit more sinister. We will never look at a nightlight the same way again.
4. Genesis - "Land of Confusion"
Although this piece from Genesis' breakout 1986 album Invisible Touch was intended to be more of a political jest warning against the perils of the Cold War, the puppets featured in it completely freak us out. The caricature of the bald, scruffy Phil Collins alone can leave a permanent scar. And how about that frightful snout on guitarist Mike Rutherford? Yikes!
3. David Hasselhoff - "Hooked on a Feeling"
This video should come with a warning: "What you are about to see contains CGI effects so horrific that they could case severe nausea and indigestion in those with weak stomachs." Perhaps what scares us the most about this video from David Hasselhoff's 1997 cover of "Hooked on a Feeling" is the straight-faced sincerity with which the former Knight Rider star assumes while flying alongside geese, dancing lakeside with dachshunds, or snowboarding down the Alps. We can't detect an ounce of irony in "The Hoff" while dancing in front of the worst green-screen effects known to man, and that really disturbs us to our core. Pass the Prevacid, please.
2. Ratatat - "Drugs"
Speaking of drugs, this clip from New York instrumental electro-rockers Ratatat could be considered a caution against taking too much Prozac. The smiling faces in this video look like they are hopped-up on so many antidepressants that they are just one happy pill away from a complete nervous breakdown.Our sister paper last year
agreed, stating that Ratatat makes "smiling scary." Now, every time we look at generic Getty Images, we notice a slightly menacing look in each model's stare.
1. Björk - "Big Time Sensuality"
We believe eccentric Icelandic chanteuse Björk wanted to come off as playful and sprightly in this video from her 1993 solo debut, Debut. It's quite the contrary; however, we can't help but feel slightly spooked by her manic glazes at the camera. She's invading our personal space, and it's uncomfortable. Too close for comfort, matter of fact. The viewer instead feels like he/she has been kidnapped by what could be an escapee from a mental institution. Are we possibly tied to the floor and the dancing berserk singer is taking us to our slow death?