FINAL GIRL explores the slasher flicks of the '70s and '80s...and all the other horror movies I feel like talking about, too. This is life on the EDGE, so beware yon spoilers!

Aug 8, 2008

greetings from Camp Arawak part 2

In the midst of all of the hullabaloo surrounding the upcoming Return to Sleepaway Camp, the fourth film in the series, I thought I'd take a moment to make a list I've decided to call

Some Things I Love About Sleepaway Camp

Christ, that's clever! And yes, I know there's no "hullabaloo" surrounding Return to Sleepaway Camp. First off, "hullabaloo" was today's highlighted word on my Word-A-Day desk calendar and I wanted to use it in a sentence- I mean, how else am I going to remember it? Secondly, I just wanted to pretend there's some hullabaloo going on to add a little spice to this boring Friday afternoon. Is that so wrong? To want some pizazz? To want to turn this post from the equivalent of dull, rote calisthenics to the equivalent of exciting, death-defying Jazzercise?

And no, I don't actually have a Word-A-Day desk calendar, but I don't really see how that makes any difference. Get off my fucking back already!

It goes without saying that there are bound to be spoilers on this list. It also goes without saying that if you've yet to see Sleepaway Camp, you should probably leave right now and not come back until you've seen it. We don't want your kind around these parts, unseer!

Some Things I Love About Sleepaway Camp

1) Ronnie (Paul DeAngelo), the jacked-up counselor who wears super-tight tops, super-short shorts that create disturbing crotch bulges, and matching tennies.

2) "You're just jealous!" Omifuckinggod, Judy, yes we are! I love Judy and her sour attitude, her massive side-ponytail, and the shirt she wears with her name on it. I want one...yeah, one that says "Judy".

3) Death by bees, death by hot water, death by boat, death by curling iron...despite the low-budget, there are some rather creative kills going on here- and the effects aren't half bad!

4) Gay, gay, gay. From the bizarre black box theatre performance of Men, Petting to the homoerotic baseball game to the homoerotic night swimming to the homoerotic water balloon fighting, there's just a lot of...homoeroticosity going on in this movie.

"Homoeroticosity" is totally a word- I saw it on my Word-A-Day desk calendar last Tuesday.

5) Ricky's foul mouth. As you may have noticed, I do so love a good swear word, and Ricky manages to bust out with some choice ones: dickface, asshole, prick, cocksucker, chickenshit, fuckin''s almost enough to make my gramma blush.

6) "Hey, bob-a-ree-bob..."

7) The cop who shows up early on, then returns later sporting THE BEST WORST FAKE MOUSTACHE IN THE HISTORY OF EVER. You can tell I feel strongly about it because I used all those capital letters.

But really, is that shoe polish?

8) "Oh my god, we hit a boat!" This girl tries so hard at the acting thing, it's awesome. I love her, whoever she is. Also of note from the opening scene: the Noo Yawk accents. "Did not, you lie-uh!"

9) "The name is Meg. M-E-G." I totally want to cop Meg's attitude and spell my name out when meeting people from now on. I also totally want to know exactly what it is that the girl in the red shirt loves. Maybe Meg's headband! I mean, H-E-A-D-B-A-N-D.

10) Ricky's hat, which he wears unironically. Look at that strut! He totally pimps around in that thing like he's George Jefferson.

11) The many stares of Angela. Whether she's watching Judy unpack, getting pelted with water balloons, coming dangerously close to being raped by the sleazy cook, getting yelled at by Judy and/or M-E-G, or simply sitting on a bench, the girl is indeed a "nutcake". A stary, stary nutcake.

12) Umm...

No one saw that one coming. Anyone who says they did is a lying liar. Sure, maybe you guessed the killer's identity, but there's no way you guessed that the innie was actually an outie.

There you go, some things I love about Sleepaway Camp. Don't you feel that we've grown closer during this process? I do.


Anonymous said...

In Meg's defense, I always spell my name out for people as well (my name is, you guessed it, Meg!). Why? Because otherwise, nine times out of ten it gets written down as "May."

I suppose the alternative is to just REALLY enunciate the G -- "my name is MeGUH!" but spelling it out seems faster and less freakazoidal.

Joseph Luster said...

I love all these flicks, but I think one of the best things about the first one (as pictured in the homoeroticosity section) are the amazing midriff-showing shirts on all the dudes (or, as I like to call them , "bro-cut T-shirts").

Anonymous said...

wow...someone waxes nearly poetic over this movie that i thoroughly love; I am so overwhelmed with emotion!

I didn't see the ending coming at all, and the first time I saw it, I almost threw in the towel over that lengthy baseball game.

Anonymous said...

Sleepaway Camp is one of those few slasher movies I can sincerely say I love. It's also one of the few horror movies which still haunts me. I think part of it is that the mask worn by Angela's dick-double (so to speak) is very good, but slightly out of proportion -- the mouth is elongated just a bit too far. It adds a disturbingly inhuman quality to those final images.

Anonymous said...

Reminds me of that "Robot Chicken" where they show the ending of the movie...


Anonymous said...

Are you kidding me? Is this the franchise that started the 'crazy transsexual' killer angle? Or was that Michael Cain's performance in drag?


Anonymous said...

What an awesome moustache! No, really, that's a work of art.

BTW, I don't know if you've seen this yet, but just in case... (the piano trailer is wonderful)

Unknown said...

I am quite proud of my Sleepaway Camp box set with the Red Cross sign on the side before they were recalled.

Anonymous said...

All I can is that the movie features some murders that are a little more innovative than what you might expect - it's effectively gory, but pulls this off without going overboard in the amount of fake blood on screen.

Anonymous said...

OK that cop is one actor, who I guess quit or left town or something, in the beginning and then another actor, 'done up' to look like him. True talent there... great!

rob! said...

Lauren from The Car, Angela from Sleepaway Camp...separated at birth?

Turnidoff Productions said...

I'll never forget the curling iron scene!


I am totally in love with Felissa Rose. She can awkwardly stare at me anytime.

Corey said...

Well, you did it... no Olympics for me. I'm totally re-watching this tonite.

Dean Treadway said...

I think I gotta see this now, if only for that guy's fake mustache...did they really think they were fooling anybody???? And, yes, that has to be friggin' shoe polish, smeared on with some makeup person's index finger right before the director yelled action.

Hey, three suggestions:

1) Since you didn't like GHOST SHIP, how about 1980's masterpiece DEATH SHIP. It's Canadian! AND it has George Kennedy! How can you lose?

2) I demand an assessment of THE INCREDIBLE MELTING MAN. Toot sweet.

3) A similar demand (I've got some brass, huh?) to hear your take on EVILSPEAK. Gotta, gotta, gotta have it...

Cat poooooooooooooo!

Stacie Ponder said...

Dean Treadway, at least one of your wishes is my command...although technically I wrote my reviwe of Death Ship before you asked for it...

But regardless, voila!

Anonymous said...




Anonymous said...

Man, I just got to this post. I laugh. Awesome screen captures, Stacie, plus the usual stacilicious, ponderific style that the French call le funné.

Anonymous said...

Epically good article.

Also, "OK that cop is one actor, who I guess quit or left town or something, in the beginning and then another actor, 'done up' to look like him."- No, same actor. Had shaved the mustache, then was called back for re-shoots.

Anonymous said...





Your posts are superb, and I shall hyperlink your post to my blogggg

Anonymous said...

All I can say is... *gasp* John!

Oh, and great essay. :)

Really Scary said...

Thank you for making my equally pizazz-less following Friday. Laughing, a lot.

Valarie, who pines for a word of the day calendar. Then she wouldn't have to use ignorant ass words like pine.
Really Scary

Bloody Mary said...

I'm glad to see you said "some" things you love, because there is SO much more to love about this movie. Not least, Aunt Martha!

You can come really close to that 'stache with electrical tape. I might be about to go apply one.

Anonymous said...

Ah, you've finally gotten around to my favorite movie of all time (tied, of course, with My Bloody Valentine, SC's winter counterpart)! I will never forget seeing this movie, alone, at 2 AM, in a dark house in upstate New York. Jesus Christ did that movie scare the shit out of me, and I still believe that the last minute or so of this movie is A) one of the most effectively scary things ever filmed, and B) the greatest ending ever. (In your face, Fight Club and The Sixth Sense.) I think the ending is so effective because not only is the whole thing visually and aurally startling, but you also don't expect it at all from this kind of flick. Up until the end, it's a fun sclice of slasher goodness, and then BAM! The whole damn movie takes on a new meaning. If you watch it again knowing the twist, you really appreciate what a brilliant and intelligent bizarre little movie this is. All of this, PLUS Ronnie's upsetting bulge and Frank The Cop's electrical tape moustache. And Stacie, HOW could you neglect to mention the greatest character ever, Aunt Martha?
Hail, Sleepaway Camp.

Rob said...

Scary, scary, SCARY. Just thinking about that last scene still gives me chills. SC is definitely an underrated, under seen 80's slasher gem. Let's seem them even TRY to remake this one.

Hhhhh said...

This is probably one of the best things to have ever been committed to celluloid.
If I owned only one movie, it would be Sleepaway Camp (And if I could have two I'd have to let Creatures From The Abyss join the party too).