Tricks, Treats, And A Ton Of Nostalgia: A Halloween Trip Down Memory Lane

Halloween nostalgia seems to be the theme today, so with that in mind, here's a roundup of various retro Halloween cartoons, commercials, and educational films meant to scare you, school you, and make you smile.

It's The Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown: Charlie Brown goes trick-or-treating and watches his friends get various treats as he gets, well, a rock.

Disney's Haunted Halloween: A 1984 educational Disney film meant to teach children all about Halloween and Halloween safety. It's actually a bit creepy!

Reese's Peanut Butter Cups, 1986: Here we learn that Frankenstein's monster was the first to combine peanut butter and chocolate. If only we had listened! We could have been eating peanut butter cups centuries ago!

McDonald's Halloween Happy Meal Pails: When I was a kid, it was absolutely essential to beg your parents to take you to McDonald's so you could get the pumpkin, ghost, or witch-shaped plastic happy meal pails.

McDonald's Halloween Nuggets: Of course, you had to get the haunted chicken McNuggets, as well. As a bonus, this is actually the scariest thing Anthony Bourdain, who despises chicken nuggets, will see all year.

Halloween Safety, 1977: This educational film from the 70s is truly the scariest thing I've seen in a long time. The intro alone is terrifying.

Donald Duck: Trick Or Treat: A Disney cartoon from 1952, featuring Donald and his nephews, Huey, Dewey, and Louie.

A Garfield Halloween: Garfield sings various musical numbers as he and Odie set out to gather as much candy as possible.

The Skeleton Dance: A Silly Symphony cartoon from 1929, this cartoon captures the best parts of Halloween; it's a bit scary, a bit silly, and a lot of fun.



Skeleton Dance gave me a recurring nightmare that lasted for almost 15 years. This used to be the Halloween night lineup on CBS or NBC (one of those) every Halloween from at least 1987 to 1995 (the years I remember it the clearest):

Local News

Friday the 13th


Disney Set — Skeleton Dance, the live/animated mix Haunted Mansion thingie, the other 1929 cartoon where Mickey Mouse goes in that haunted house and has to play the piano for the grim reaper while they dance

Nightmare on Elm Street

Of ALL THOSE THINGS (including Freddy Kreuger and dancing zombies), Skeleton Dance was the one that scared me the most. The nightmares I had for those 15 years are some of the worst ever, because every year on Halloween I knew that no matter what I did, that fucking dream was coming again. And it scared me shitless every time. #nostalgia