13 Things From Ghoulish Productions!I try to review Halloween masks and props fairly sparingly; each major source produces just a handful of new items each year, and not all of them are something I can squeeze anecdotes out of, but Ghoulish Productions is one website I've heavily neglected, outside the inclusion of a few masks in my 2013 reviews, such as their horrifying corn demon. Could they possibly offer anything to top the worst demon in the world???
A nice simple one to start with, GP's interpretation of a "boogeyman" has a head shaped like it's wearing a bag over its face, but the "bag" is just smooth, slick, blackish skin that I have to admit is pretty uncanny, and nicely brings out the pale, sickly cream of its eyeballs and teeth.
"Digital Wandering Eye Cyclops"
This is a type of mask that's slowly caught in the last couple of years, actually containing a harness for your cellular phone. Each mask has its own app to download, turning your phone into a digital screen to display, in this case, the realistic animated eyeball of this classic cyclops. It's pretty damn genius, and must look amazing in person. Soon, I'm sure, it'll become common enough that it's no longer all that impressive, but I don't think it will ever stop being fun...especially if you just mix and match with even weirder things to display.
I'm kinda waiting for somebody's phone to screw up and turn their monster's eyeball into their most embarrassing selfie.
GP offers a whole line of big, cheerful skeletons dressed up as famous characters, one of which is obviously Princess Leia. With the recent passing of Carrie Fisher, some people might think this isn't entirely sensitive, but I'm pretty sure Carrie would have found this really cute, both before and after it became a little more morbid. I'm also pretty sure this is meant to be a "Day of the Dead" style skeleton anyway, which are supposed to be a happy, lighthearted memory of the dead. They're not interchangeable with Halloween, but that's its own subject entirely.
To throw a prop into the mix, "Dead Monkey" is honestly much cooler for the fact that it doesn't look anything like a dead monkey, but like the skeleton of some sort of scrawny demon.
We're only reviewing the 2017 catalog, so presumably, any red oni is now out of stock. It's just as well; blue are clearly the superior choice, and everybody knows that.
This Oni's design draws very well from actual, traditional Oni masks, capturing that same eerie, almost pleading snarl in life-like biological detail. They even remembered that the blues are more often the two-horned variety, and I appreciate the sheer intensity of the skin tone. Muted, washed out colors are more popular in horror, but they're also much more boring.
This is another digitally enhanced mask, with lifelike eyes that dart around the blackness. I'm not sure which implication I like more: that this big-mouthed, gluttonous humanoid naturally has eyes in its throat, or that something so closely resembling a human is a monster that swallows other humans whole and alive. That's horrendous.
This one, meanwhile, uses the phone gimmick for animated, churning gears, though this would have been a cool and interesting enough Frankenstoid even without it; I fully embrace the idea that Frankenstein's monster can also be essentially a "robot."
Another prop worth mentioning, the Radioactive Rat is a simple, rubber rodent with lots of extra eyeballs and various pus-filled sores. It's not really especially rat-like, more dog-like really, but it's a great addition to a post-apocalyptic haunt or year-round dinner table.
"Low Poly Goat"
GP has several of these "low poly" Halloween masks, which are a truly novel idea I'm surprised wasn't already done. Maybe it's just taken this long for people to appreciate "low poly" as its own artistic style; when I was a kid, we just thought of it as "bad graphics," if you can believe it!
A skull, a raven and others are all offered, but I think the red goat head is the most striking, like somebody summoned a demon through a Sega CD.
"Commedia di Papiere"
Wonderfully dreamlike, especially the combination of flesh-like detail with carved wood textures. This is a mask that begs for an exceptional costume to match, either contrasted with something frilly and gaudy or emphasized with something grey and black and dusty, but in either case, a hat of some sort is a MUST. The bigger and broader, the better. One of those ballroom eye masks on a stick would also complement this well; you could put it up to different sets of eyes and pull different voices for each "face," right?!
It's everyone's favorite Doctor Sause character, the Green Santa that which burglarized December 25th! Really though, this is actually a pretty nice interpretation of the Grinch. It's really a bit closer to how I'd have imagined him in "live action" than the Jim Carrey version, even if it has to make some unfortunate sacrifices for copyright reasons. Above all else, it's the Grinch's crooked, rectangular teeth that stick out to me as a key feature. The nose here however is spot-on how I'd expect his to really look.
Of all the bag-headed creatures I've ever seen, this is one of the most appealing. The placement of those big, round, dark eyes vs. the mouthful of oversized teeth is seriously adorable, and it even reminds me a little of Pathfinder's Executioner's Hood monster, if you just add a few tentacles to the mix.
This is pretty interesting. It's ostensibly some sort of diving suit, but it looks much more like a military helmet and gas mask constructed to work like a diving suit, so I guess we're looking at some kind of steampunk nautical sea-trooper, and then there's the green tentacles pouring out of it, which is maybe supposed to look like this figure is merely "grappling" with a monstrous cephalopod, but looks more to me like the cephalopod already won, already ate the juicy contents of the suit and might be puppeting the whole thing around like a darker and grittier Octodad. Just find yourself some prop tentacle arms to really complete the look.