Friday, 19 August 2011

Diary: Kindred Spirits

Buried deep in the guts of the dark fiend that is Facebook there lies a group that makes me very happy indeed. I don't take part in the discussion much, which I shall be correcting shortly, but every time I go there I am reassured that I may not be all that odd after all. The group is HORROR VHS COLLECTORS UNITE! and it is populated by people I feel a great affinity towards- film fans with a passion for horror on VHS.

There are almost five thousand images of big-box VHS tapes, tapes in card sleeves, cover art and more, and it makes me dribble between my keys. It's nice to know I'm not the only person around with a fondness for this obsolete format, and I can find some solace in the adventures of this group, as it means that I don't feel quite so much like my Dad talking about eight-track tapes.

I'm sure when I have a kid that it will stare at my collection of big-box VHS tapes and wonder how the hell you play them, what they were for, why the format was so clunky and why the covers tended to be much better than a lot of the films themselves. Well, I love those black chunks of plastic and tape. I love their garish covers, their bad effects, their over-saturated colours and fuzzy edges. I love their distorted audio and their awful effects.

I love horror on VHS. Simple as that.

I love the search, the anticipation and the excitement of finding something rare, something cool or something awful but still fascinating. What I love the most right now is the knowledge that I'm not alone in my quest. So, to every member of that group, I salute you, my comrades. I salute your collections and your passion, and am glad to be amongst your number. Here's to digging out forgotten gems and sharing the discovery of those treasures with our obsessed brethren.

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