It can be shocking to revisit the movies, TV shows and books we loved as kids. As it turns out, there was a lot of really messed up stuff in our childhood that we’ve managed to block out through the years. Whether it was “that one scary part” in your favorite movie, or the show your parents really shouldn’t have let you stay up late for, we all have something spooky lurking in our memories.
If you’re not up for the challenge, close this list right now, because we’re going to take a walk down memory lane and uncover 13 of the scariest things we (somehow) enjoyed when we were kids.
1. Reading Garbage Pail Kids before you were ready
Okay, so these collectibles were (mostly) harmless, but there are a couple that were definitely too grotesque for kids. If these cards were still popular today, you could bet that more parents would be upset about them.
2. The Evil Clown from The Brave Little Toaster
Who thought it was a good idea to take a cute little kids movie about a talking toaster and drop a nightmare about an evil clown into it?
3. The Gmork
While The Neverending Story had its share of dark and frightening scenes, nothing else measured up to the Gmork, the huge wolf monster who serves the Nothing. There’s no shame in admitting you closed your eyes during his scene.
4. The Crypt Keeper
Maybe you felt like you were old enough to watch Tales From the Crypt, but one look at this pun-loving host was enough to make most kids turn off their TV and sleep with the lights on.
5. Mola Ram’s scene in Temple of Doom
There’s no denying this film was too intense for young audiences, helping to create the PG-13 rating with scenes like the terrifying “kali ma” ritual.
6. Large Marge
Large Marge’s scary face in Pee Wee’s Big Adventure terrified me so much that I avoided the movie for a decade, which is a shame because it’s a real comedy classic.
Click the next page for 7 more scary moments from your childhood!
7. PSAs and very special episodes
The advertiser groups and TV writers who tried to share important lessons with us sure had an odd way of doing it, because mostly they just terrified young kids with totally unlikely scenarios. Why, for example, did we need a whole episode of Punky Brewster warning us not to play in old refrigerators? Parents complained about the violence in G.I. Joe, but some of the educational skits at the end were actually frightening.
This one has made me afraid of cooking to this day:
8. Seeing THESE books in your library
9. The library scene from Ghostbusters
If you showed this movie to a friend at a sleepover, you had two options: warn them to look away from the TV, because this scene was a little scary, or just let them watch and be traumatized for life.
10. Your big sister’s troll doll collection
You knew it shouldn’t creep you out, they’re just toys after all, but they just have those huge, empty eyes and their weird hairdos. Don’t turn your back on them, it feels like they’re looking right through you!
You have to hand it to Jim Henson, it’s hard to believe that anything as creepy and disgusting as these monsters was made by hand. There were a lot of spooky designs in The Dark Crystal, but none stand up to these ugly bird creatures.
12. THAT scene from The Adventures of Mark Twain
Another case of an absolutely horrifying scene that had no business being in a kids movie. Even as a grown up, it’s hard not to shiver when you hear the “Angel” talk in that awful voice.
13. The clown from Poltergeist
Alright, to be fair kids had to reason to watch this movie, but if your parents were really cool or you happened to catch it on HBO, odds are this scene is the reason you won’t dangle your feet off the bed.
Share this list if you remember any of these!