On rare occasions, something that we love crosses paths with something else that we adore and creates a synergistic windfall of glad tidings. Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups. Beer and pizza. Steak and cheese. Scooby-doo and the Harlem Globetrotters. On the extremely rare occasion, a third item enters the picture, transforming the fantastical into the transcendent.
During the 1950s, some strange alignment of the creative forces of the universe occurred, and every single type of monster that we will ever need was created. The so called, and coincidentally named, “Universal Monsters” known as Dracula, the Wolfman, Frankenstein, the Mummy, and the Creature from the Black Lagoon are the archetypes of nearly every kind of horrorific character that has or will be created to frighten. Dracula is the original and quintessential vampire from which all others are based (even the insipid Twilight). The Wolfman, or werewolf, represents all those wild animals that go berserk and acquire a taste for human flesh, from Cujo to The Birds and even Frogs. Frankenstein is the supernatural killer that can’t be stopped, and is often driven by some sort of deformity, whether physical or mental, like Jason Vorhees or Michael Myers. Like the modern zombie, The Mummy has risen from the dead to shuffle relentlessly after those that have disturbed their sleep, their “mummy’s curse” representing the guilt of greed of those who would seek their treasure. Terrors from the deep such as Piranhas, Leviathan, and Jaws can actually be traced back to the earliest seafarers, but, well…the Creature from the Black Lagoon was in 3D!
Now then, as a fan of these classic monsters, I’ve certainly found my share of licensed entertainment that sets my heart a flutter. If there is one thing I love more than video games, though, that thing is probably pinball. There are quite a few tables out there that have featured some of the aforementioned beasties, and that is all well and good, but there is one particular machine that manages to cram all of them into one gloriously magnificent orgy of macabre flipper-flipping, plunger-pulling, quarter-eating, super monster fun. That greatest pinball machine ever concieved, my friends, is Monster Bash!
Pinball and monsters combined were enough for me to swear fealty to the gods of Williams, but they were not content. Why would all of these seemingly misanthropic and anti-social monsters come together on one single game board and share the spotlight? The answer is simple and AWESOME! Rock and Roll.
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