Wednesday, October 31, 2012


So it's Halloween! And as far I know now - two days prior - I survived Hurricane Sandy. If not, then I guess you'll be seeing sporadic postings from me through New Year's Day (unless my family pulls the plug on my Blogger account.)

But since it's Halloween, it's time to make the official announcement of the October inductee into the TV Crossover Hall of Fame. And in keeping with tradition, that special someone has a connection to the Supernatural, the Monstrous, and/or all things dealing in Horror.

Ladies and gentlemen, I'm pleased to present to you.....


Here's a quick history of Elvira, courtesy of Wikipedia:

In the late spring of 1981, six years after the death of Larry Vincent (who starred as host Sinister Seymour of a local Los Angeles weekend horror show called 'Fright Night'), show producers began the task of bringing the show back. Deciding to use a female host, producers 'sent out a casting call. Cassandra Peterson auditioned against 200 other horror hostess hopefuls and won the role. Producers left it up to her to create the role's image. She and her best friend, Robert Redding, came up with the sexy punk/vampire look after producers rejected her original idea to look like Sharon Tate in "The Fearless Vampire Killers".

What followed was 'Elvira's Movie Macabre', featuring a quick-witted Valley-girl-type character named Elvira, Mistress of the Dark. With heavily applied, pancake-horror make up and a towering black beehive wig to conceal Peterson's flame-red hair.

The Elvira character rapidly gained notoriety with her tight-fitting, low-cut black gown which showed ample cleavage. The movies featured on 'Elvira's Movie Macabre' were always B grade (or lower). Elvira reclined on a red Victorian couch, introducing and often interrupting the movie to lampoon the actors, the script and the editing.

Adopting the flippant tone of a California "Valley girl", she brought a satirical, sarcastic edge to her commentary. She reveled in dropping risqué double entendres and making frequent jokes about her display of cleavage. In an AOL Entertainment News interview, Peterson said, "I figured out that Elvira is me when I was a teenager. She's a spastic girl. I just say what I feel and people seem to enjoy it." Her campy humor, sex appeal, and good-natured self-mockery made her popular with late-night movie viewers as her popularity soared.

Elvira was a frequent guest on 'The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson' and other talk shows. She also produced a long-running series of Halloween-themed television commercials for Coors Light Beer and Mug Root Beer (her trademark cleavage was concealed for the Coors campaign). She appeared in guest roles on television dramas such as 'CHiPs', 'The Fall Guy' and 'Last Man Standing' and appeared on numerous awards shows as a presenter.

The Elvira character rapidly evolved from obscure cult figure to a lucrative brandname and "Mistress of all Media", spawning many products throughout the 1980s and 1990s including Halloween costumes, comic books, action figures, trading cards, pinball machines, Halloween decor, model kits, calendars, perfume and dolls. She has appeared on the cover of "Femme Fatales" magazine five times. Her popularity reached its zenith with the release of the feature film "Elvira, Mistress of the Dark" (co-written by Peterson) in 1988.

Here's a list of some of her appearances in Toobworld:

"Last Man Standing" 
Last Halloween Standing (2011)

"Parker Lewis Can't Lose"
Boy Meets Girl II (1992)

"The Fall Guy" 
- October the 32nd (1985)
- October the 31st (1984)

- Things That Go Creep in the Night (1983)
- Rock Devil Rock (1982)

"NFL Monday Night Football"
- Chicago Bears vs. Minnesota Vikings (1996)
- Indianapolis Colts vs. Denver Broncos (1988)

"Space Ghost Coast to Coast"
Switcheroo (1996) … Elvira

Of course, I only cover Toobworld. But Elvira is the Queen of all Media, appearing in various worlds of the Multiverse. Not being one to be that knowledgeable in those areas of her "life", I'd like to direct you to the TVCU blog of my crossover comrade, Robert Wronski, who has examined Elvira's career in all its glory.

And so the TV Crossover Hall of Fame welcomes Elvira to its ranks, clasping her to our bosom just as we wish she would do the same for us....


1 comment:

Brian Leonard said...

Scared Stiff, one of two Elvira-themed pinball machines, is one of the best pinball machines ever made.