Sunday, January 18, 2009

Jackson's HORRIBLE MOVIE

Re-posted From The Constant Monster Blog

When I was a kid, between the years of 1971 and 1975, WAPT-TV, the ABC affiliate in Jackson Mississippi had their own horror movie series called Horrible Movie.

Horrible Movie was broadcast on Saturday nights after the news. It featured mostly old Universal Monster movies. Movies both from the classic 30's era, like Dracula and Frankenstein, but also the revival in the 40's like The Wolfman and even Universal's Sci-fi Era films from the 50's like The Creature From The Black Lagoon and The Monolith Monsters.

The host of the show was an unpleasant woman named SCARTICIA, who wore a slinky black dress similar to the Addams Family's Morticia, who she was clearly named for. Unlike Morticia or Vampyra, who wore similar outfits, Scarticia had a painted-on extreme old-age makeup, and her black wig was more matted than luxurious.

I haven't been able to find out a whole lot about Scarticia, except that her real name was Annette and she was fairly young at the time. Her day job was working as that secretary to the station's general manager.

Scarticia called her loyal viewers (like me!) "animals" and generally acted like they were monsters themselves, which was a lot of fun.

Usually, Horrible Movie was broadcast from the studio with only a chair or a sofa as set pieces. I can remember at least one occasion though, when the show was broadcast from a wrestling ring in the old Armory on the fairgrounds where WAPT also occasionally broadcast Mid-South Wrestling.

Scarticia's guests included characters like "Thing" which was a guy covered in fabric looking like a cross between the blob and McDonald's Grimace, The Black Genie, and Dr. Choke Throttle. Her regular co-host was Scoop Gravely, played by local radio and TV personality Ed Hobgood.

Horrible Movie was a big hit among a certain age group in Jackson. On one episode, Scarticia showed a stack of letters she received from a local junior high school. She acted like she was going to read them, but instead threw them up in the air saying "who has time?"

The early seventies was also the era of "Streaking" where people ran naked in public places for no particular reason. One Saturday night, Scoop Gravely said Scarticia was caught streaking and he'd show us video tape after the next commercial segment. When Scoop returned, the video tape he promised showed a naked doll with black hair "running" in front of a still photograph of downtown Jackson.

When Horrible Movie ran the 1933 classic King Kong, Scoop said he also had video tape of a real, live dinosaur in Jackson. The tape showed a yellow Marx Toy Brontosaurus in front of the same photograph of downtown Jackson.


I only have this one photograph of Scarticia. (click to enlarge)

If you have any more, please send it in and I'll post it. If you have any information about Horrible Movie or memories about this classic show, please share those too and I'll post it here.

18 comments:

Sandi said...

I'm guessing there's nothing on Youtube?

A. Boyd C. said...

Nothing yet. This was before home video recorders so I've never been able to find anybody with anything on Horrible Movie. A few years ago, I even contacted WAPT to see if they had anything, but the people I talked to weren't very interested.

One of the reasons I'm posting this is in the hope that it'll attract people who know anything about the show and we can kind of pool our resources.

Who knows, maybe even Scarticia herself will find it.

Anonymous said...

Wow - I hadn't thought of Scarticia in forever. Thanks for bring back great childhood memories of popcorn, flashlights and "bad" movies!!!

popGeezer said...

Great post. Scarticia came to our Halloweeen festival at JA in 72 or 73.

Ch. 16 resurrected "Horrible Movie" several times after that original golden age. I had the distinct honor to have been the co-host of the last incarnation (summer of 1982) when 16 finally cancelled it. Sorry about that.

Your Pal,
Nicky Gilstrap

A. Boyd C. said...

Wow, I missed the '82 version. Was scar in it?

popGeezer said...

Memory is fuzzy, but there was no Scar in 1982. The 1st revival of "HM" did have her, I believe.

By 1982, and this fourth (?) version, Ch 16's Jimmy Moore's girlfriend (& later wife) was an onscreen gothy cutie host. The movie was also "semi-hosted" by an onscreen chyron as well.

When Jimmy & his gf (name is just gone from my head) went on vacation, I got snuck in to guest host a week. Creating gossip columnist Nicky Gilstrap - of the National Destroyer - I mocked up a real-live cut and past copy of the mag. I hosted several pre-taped breaks and we had a commercial for the Destroyer, a la the Enquirer commercials of the day.

In weeks two and three, we created a battle for show-hosting duties between Nicky and the unnamed girl. At the end of week three, she'd nailed Nicky into a crate to ship him away someplace. "Horrible Movie" was pre-empted the next week... and then forever.

Again, sorry about that.

valerie said...

Oh wow!! I remember too!!!!! Thank you for taking me down memory lane!

Annette said...

I know Scarticia very well, in fact I AM Scarticia. So glad to see there are still people out there who remember her fondly. Rock on, animals!

Mark said...

I believe her name was Beth Fuller. Great Show! Loved it!!!

Steve Patrick said...

Annette...I'm sorry "SCARTICIA".
Just wanted to say THANK YOU for the GREAT job ya'll did 1971-75. I would LOVE to get a telephone interview with you for a story I am writing about "HORRIBLE MOVIE".
I JUST joined thios "BLOG" thing but I cannot figure it out yet.
Could you please contact me at :
patr8307@att.net
I have VIVID memories of you and your show ! Your animal, Steve

Steve Patrick said...

A YEAR since anyone posted before yesterday. Hmmm ...I HOPE ANNETTE pops in again ! This has been like trying to find "Bettie Page" back in the 1980's !
I CLEARLY remember the last episode where "Scar" and "Scoop" saw a UFO come down at the beginning of the show ! (ALL TV stations played "Star Spangled Banner" before sign off... then static.) On THIS night at the end of the show ...Scar, Scoop and Hubba all got on the UFO and took off as they played DAVID BOWIE'S "Space Oddyssey" as the ship disappeared into space. I waited for the "Anthem"...but as Bowie's song faded it went straight to STATIC !
I will never forget that moment ...it made my hair stand up ! Please Annette...I would love that phone interview ! It's about to be the 40th anniversary ! I would keep your identity anonymous I promise you ... although I think you should be very PROUD of what ya'll accomplished ! ANY chance any footage was "TAPED" or indeed survives ? Perhaps there are more photo's that Mr. Campbell could post ? THANK YOU to anyone involved with "HORRIBLE MOVIE" !
Public Animal #9....Steve
patr8307@att.net

Jeri Kendall said...

My Dad used to work at Channel 16 from 1969 to 1978. Unfortunately, he just passed away in January 2011. I wish I had come across this blog while he was alive. He personally knew Annette, Jimmy Moore and worked directly with Jimmy's father. I was a HUGE fan of this show from age 11 to 15! Hope you stop back in, Annette, or anyone else who had anything to do with the show! THANKS FOR THE MEMORIES! <3

Steve Patrick said...

Boyd...
Drop me an e-mail...
BIG NEWS on "Horrible Movie" !
Peace... Steve

Steve Patrick said...

WOW... Thanks "Scarticia" for the e-mail and the telephone interview ! Also for the only 2 episodes of "Horrible Movie" that EXIST ! "Scar" and "Scoop" hosted "The Mummy's Hand" (1940) and "Frankenstein meets the Wolfman" (1943). (Transfered from a "QUAD" tape.) They will be posted on "YOUTUBE" ASAP ! Don't worry... they have been downloaded from a VHS onto a computer and onto DVD now ! 1st episode "Scoop" finds a 2000 year old seed in a pharoah's tomb. He plants it and a monster-plant grows. Things go badly from there ! (YES... it was as cool as I remembered it being .)
I will let ya'll know when and where the 40th anniversary story will be published. So far the "Jackson Free Press" and "Famous Monsters" magazine are interested .
MAN... what a ... "BLAST" !!!
PEACE animals... Steve

John said...

I remember Horrible Movie and Scarticia well.

Angie said...

My Grandmother, Fay Morris, worked as a bookeeper at WAPT at the time and got to play the Mummy in one of the skits without my Grandfather knowing abou it. I was about 4 at the time and saw her on TV. The next day, I asked her, "Mawmaw, what were you doing chasing that man on T.V last night?" She was not amused. I remember going to the station with her and getting to meet Scarticia. I was scared to death!! Over the years, we've heard many funny stories about stunts Mawmaw and the girls pulled at the station. I wish I had them on tape. I would LOVE to see old footage of those skits if anyone knows how and where I could access them!

Steve Patrick said...

"Good Eeeevening ANIMALS".... 2 episodes of "Scarticia's Horrible Movie" have now been posted to YOUTUBE . 28 minutes total on 3 posts. "Scar" & "Scoop" host "The Mummy's Hand"(1940) and "Frankenstein Meets Wolfman" (1943). YES... they ARE as great as I remember as a kid ! Thank you to "Scarticia" herself for saving this footage ! Thank you to BOYD for writing such a GREAT article ! HAPPY HALLOWEEN 2011 !!!!

Karen :) said...

I met Annette Lorenz when I was at Hinds Jr. College 77-79. She was married to Skip Lorenz and they had a young son. Annette was a talented singer and had a band called Annette and Friends. And I loved Horrible Movie!!