1. What’s Bueno: Halloween Stuff!

    ¿What's Bueno? I'll Tell You!

    HALLOWEEN is just around the corner according to my local 99¢ Only store! They’ve got their Halloween aisle all ready for consumer dishevelment!


    To be honest, I was a bit underwhelmed by the selection, but it looks like it had just gone up within the last coupla days, so maybe there’s more merchandise to come. Those great fabric masks I mentioned last year would surely be the next big thing? Thus far, nowhere in sight!

    The glow-in-the-dark skeleton gloves made famous either by my site last year or Barry Weiss on “Storage Wars”?


    There ain’t none this year!

    But here are some of the more interesting items they did have…


    Apparently, at least one manufacturer thinks that Baz Luhrman’s recent adaptation of “The Great Gatsby” is going to inspire some outfits this October 31st. Like you, I detest Halloween costumes that aren’t scary or gory in some way, so the only acceptable Gatsby-inspired use of this would be to dress as Myrtle Wilson after the fatal car crash. Ooh, spoiler alert!

    (By the way, they also had Lincoln-esque top hats. Add a bullet hole or two, spatter with fake blood, and they lend themselves magnificently to a macabre take on our 16th president, thank you very much, John Wilkes Whosis!)


    These spider web candy dishes were pretty clever.  They also came in putrid purple and ghastly green. Like you, I’d have no use for the colorful ones, but the black one is great! (That said, wouldn’t it make more sense to cast them in white plastic?)

    Halloween Fun Tip #1: Invert the bowl and attach a thin pole to the middle and you’ve got a delightful little mini-parasol that Lily Munster herself would be proud to carry around.


    Halloween Fun Tip #2: Tape them over ceiling light fixtures for some spooky ambiance. At least until the thin plastic starts melting and catches fire, burning your house to the ground in the middle of your party. But you and the others who don’t get out will have left a marvelous Halloween legacy for neighborhood kids to whisper about for generations!

    Halloween Fun Tip #3: Just use them as the candy dishes they’re intended to be, as I’m probably already in trouble with notoriously litigious Universal Studios for even daring to type ‘Lily Munster’ without paying a steep licensing fee. And let’s not even get started with the liability issues I’ve left myself wide open for telling you to attach these things to hot lights.


    Check out these plastic beakers – they’re just the thing to fill up with some water and dry ice for a creepy mad scientist’s lab display. The opening is a bit small so you may have to suck on any larger pieces of dry ice for a few minutes to melt ’em down a bit before they’ll fit into the beakers. Or, alternatively, as my attorney suggests, don’t do that.


    Double-wall tumblers have been What’s Bueno at the 99¢ Only store for at least a year now – yours truly even picked up a green bamboo-like one for, yes, 99¢ Only a few months back. Two of these Halloween ones are great, but as to the one in the middle: Was it really wise to print “Zombie Blood” in red? If it turns out you are drinking zombie blood, no one will be able to read your cup!

    And on that note, it just wouldn’t be 2013 if we didn’t have some sort of merchandisal intersection of two of the currently most tired and overused pop culture trends:  zombies and “Keep Calm” posters. And, by Godfrey, here it is:


    Marvelous. Now we’re officially done with both, right?  Right?!


    Cheap plastic body parts shrink-wrapped onto styrofoam meat trays with funny labels were around last year as well, but they’re still worth noting. However, I don’t really understand why they even bother carrying them – they’re all but indistinguishable from the real “meat” you’ll find in the 99¢ Only Store’s frozen foods case in texture, taste and nutritional value!  Oh, come on now, I kid! The fake meat’s actually safe to ingest.


    This eerie plastic bag is printed with an ominous warning about suffocating babies. Hilariously macabre!  Oh, also I guess there’s a plastic blood-filled heart inside.


    You’ve been wanting to go as Ray Liotta from the dinner scene in “Hannibal” for a dozen years. At long last, now you can!  And when you’re done, pop this little beauty off your noggin and you’re ready to re-discover the joys of Jell-O.


    And finally: there’s something delightful about these cheap latex masks that look like they’re right out of the 1960s. And what’s even scarier – the chef’s hats – or toques [industry term] – next to ’em!


    Forget Dracula, the devil, a mummy or Frankenstein’s monster – you really want to scare the bejeezus out of everyone this year, dress up as virtually any contestant from a Food Network cooking show! I mean, have you seen some of those people?! And they let them work with food!

    Speaking of food – and by extension holidays associated with food – by this time tomorrow they’ll have cleared the Halloween crap out of here and rechristened it the Thanksgiving aisle!


    Be sure to come back then for my reviews of this year’s selection of snap-in-half turkey platters, leaf-shaped window gel clings stickers your kids will mistake for gummy candy and hideous glitter-covered resin cornucopias!

    Posted by on September 9, 2013, 12:28 PM.

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