It’s been 40 years since actress Cassandra Peterson first adopted her Elvira, Mistress Of The Dark persona, a deliberate throwback to the camp horror hostesses of yore, who has now pretty thoroughly eclipsed her predecessors in the public consciousness. Armed with towering hair, some just-barely-TV-legal cleavage, and roughly 8 million puns and an insatiable appetite for schlock horror movies, Elvira’s Movie Macabre became an institution on TV screens in the 1980s, introducing a whole generation of viewers to a) a bunch of classic horror movies, and, b) the joys of making fun of a bunch of classic horror films. Although the show ended in 1986, Peterson has been a part of the public consciousness ever since, starring in films, revival specials, commercials, video games, and not just one, but three different pinball tables. (Scared Stiff is the best one; just saying.)
Amazingly, that TV persistence has not, to date, included any major Elvira content on Shudder, despite the horror streaming site being a seemingly natural destination for her delightfully campy schtick. That’s about to change, though, as the service announced today that it’ll be playing host to Elvira’s 40th Anniversary, Very Scary, Very Special Special this year as part of its 61 Days Of Halloween programming block. The on-demand special will premiere on September 25, and will see the Mistress Of The Dark apply her trademark snark to the works of William Castle, Christopher Lee, William Huyck, and…Elvira herself, since 1988's Elvira, Mistress Of The Dark will be a major part of the marathon line-up.
Peterson issued a statement about the upcoming special, noting that, “It’s always tough turning 40, but what better way to mark the occasion than a one-night stand with Shudder, the spookiest of streamers? It’s going to be the ultimate Hallow-anniversa-ween bash, and you don’t want to miss it.” Films on the special’s line-up include Castle’s House On Haunted Hill, 1960's The City Of The Dead, and 1973's Messiah Of Evil.