Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Movies that haunted my childhood: Part III- Ghost Dad

Bill Cosby pretty much always adds up to good old fashioned family fun.  After all, who was a more comforting TV dad than the affable Cliff Huxtable (maybe Danny Tanner, but that was later and there was always the sneaking suspicion he might be gay)?  For the majority of my childhood though, anything with Bill Cosby in it was unfailingly light hearted and entertaining.  In any case, it was hard to imagine I'd ever find myself terrified of the guy from the JELLO pudding commercials, but that was before I saw Ghost Dad.
You see Bill Cosby isn't scary, but killing him and having him come back from beyond the grave is.  Right off the bat we see Cliff friggin' Huxtable fall of a bridge and die at the hands of a crazed lunatic, Satan-worshiping taxi driver.  Nice start (although it is still hilarious when Bill Cosby tells the driver he's his dark lord).  And did I mention that his wife in the movie is already dead?  Oh but don't worry kids, sure you're orphans... but Dad will be back to see you soon.  Ominous much?
For the rest of the film we get to watch the lovable Elliot Hopper (Cosby) try to maintain his career and family life, all without the benefit of a beating heart.  And how you ask, does he communicate with the ones he's left behind in the world of the living?  Easy, they can see him when the lights are turned off.  That's a healthy concept to feed to children. As if there aren't enough pants-shitting possibilities in a child's imagination about what might happen when the lights go out.  Needless to say, for the next year or so every time my parents put me to bed I was positive I was going to see Bill Cosby's dead ass standing over me as soon as they hit the switch.
So I must extend a huge thanks to Universal Pictures, because not only did you murder Bill Cosby, you brought him back to haunt me.  Bravo.

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