LA Times columnist Meghan Daum on her costume last year: It always fascinates me how on Halloween women want to dress up like sluts and men want to dress up like women. Maybe I’ll go as a man dressed as a woman dressed as a slut. But I’d really like to get my hands on one of those vending machine costumes they apparently use in Japan to avoid muggers.
Last Halloween season, in our Creepy Questions series CreepyLA interviewed some notable Los Angeles denizens. From Elvira to Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, from Patt Morrison to John Doe, each one shed some light on their habits, quirks and traditions for the holiday.
On the subject of Halloween costumes they wore when they were kids, the answers were all over the place. But when it came to identifying the scariest thing in Los Angeles, we seemed to (almost) reach a consensus.
As for naming their favorite scary movies– well, try not to read too much into the answers.
What did you dress up as when you were a kid?
Elvira: Even when I was a little girl I was anything but little. I had to go out as twins.
John Doe: I seem to remember my mom making me a ghost– sheet over head, cut out eye holes, several times.
Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa: I dressed as a cowboy, a vampire, and my favorite costume was a baseball player.
Patt Morrison: I loved Classics Illustrated comic books when I was little and one year I insisted on going as – get this — Hamlet! I had a pageboy haircut already, and somehow my mother and grandmother put together a passable doublet to go with the whole black tights look, and I think I had a plastic skull candy basket so I could put my loot in “poor Yorick.” Of course I had to explain a jillion times who I was and I’m sure I came off like an obnoxious little git, declaring “To be or not to be … trick or treat!” but at the time I thought it was inspired.
Shilah Morrow: My mom, who was an actress, made me a great Mae West costume when I was 9 years old. She even taught me to speak like her. Trick-or-treating was never the same after that.
Meghan Daum: One year I went as the Statue of Liberty… Another year I was a Jawa from Star Wars. Remember those flashing red glasses called Zany Zappers? I wore those along with my father’s bathrobe. I was kind of tiring of Halloween by that point.
Eric Garcetti, City Council President: My mom and I made all of my Halloween costumes together. I still have most of them. I think that one of my favorites was a Superman cape that we made out of felt. Back then, I had no idea that one day my office would be in the same building as Clark Kent’s.
Tom LaBonge, Councilmember: A hobo.
Spindrift: Dave was a space alien and Zorro. I’ve been a robot, King Neptune, El Sobero (the character I play in our film,) Satan, a priest– anything but myself. That would be the scariest.
What’s the scariest thing about Los Angeles?
Patt Morrison: That’s easy – it’s Halloween 365 days a year on the freeway. Driving is the scariest thing in LA!
Elvira: The DMV!
John Doe: The freeway tunnels under Highway 5.
Dead Rock West: The traffic, the smog.
I See Hawks in LA: Sitting on the 110 at 6 PM, a darkening October eve, endless red tail lights to the horizon, traffic frozen. And then the doors swing open on the Ryder truck up ahead and angry, blond-bearded Norsemen toting Kalashnikovs tumble forth, taking aim at our soft and vulnerable heads. One by one they pick us off, turning the Harbor Freeway into the bloodiest traffic jam yet.
Spindrift: 6th Street, police helicopters at night, the Griffith Park fire, the shape my car is in, LAX.
Meghan Daum: My desk.
What’s your favorite scary movie?
Elvira: Well, for me, Vincent Price flicks were huge! Roger Corman’s releases were pretty damn cool too. Obviously they had a big influence on me.
Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa: My favorite scary movie as a child was Alfred Hitchcock’s Psycho.
Eric Garcetti: I liked The Sixth Sense. Waterworld was also pretty scary, but in a different kind of way.
Tom LaBonge: The Thing.
Victoria Lane: Absolutely! I plan to remain in my pink robe and do nothing at all. If I’m awake before noon, it’ll be a miracle.
Left, Photo by Devin Phillips
Top, pictured from left: Elvira, John Doe, Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, Shilah Morrow, Patt Morrison
Photos by Lynn Goldsmith, Autumn De Wilde, photoren/Flickr (Creative Commons lic.,) David Shankbone (Creative Commons lic.)