Slender part 2 (a.k.a Why I Fucking Hate Bathrooms)

Posted: August 1, 2012 in Ramblings

I featured a post on the Indie game Slender yesterday. And my first death in the game occured in a bathroom. Which brings me to the topic of today’s post, Why I Fucking Hate Bathrooms.

         Showers have that effect on me too.

Ever since Janet Leigh’s infamous shower scene in Psycho, the portrayal of bathrooms in popular culture can be split into two distinct categories: either the sparkling clean, white-tiled pristine world shown in all those Domestos ads, or as a blood-splattered portal of terror.

I’m guessing it stems from the fact that bathrooms are associated with being naked, and thus at our most vulnerable – having your pants around your ankles, stuck there defenseless as you void your bowels and generally fiddle with your nether regions. But I began to ponder why it is that the bathroom of all places has become such a potent image in poopular culture (typo and it stays!) when it comes to fear-inducing scenarios.

Nothing good can come of this

       The only thing that brightened Private Pyle’s day was sneaking off for a wank             Image credit: cracked.com

I mean I can see why mirrors are scary. No one likes looking at themselves in the harsh light of truth, seeing themselves being ravaged by age in it’s unrelenting quest to steal your youth… sorry, I just turned 30 so i’m going through some shit right now.

Anyway, for those who don’t know me, I have a long-standing fear of bathrooms. I think it stems from Stephen King’s It, or maybe from some deep-seated disturbances surrounding toilet-training in my youth… whatever. My parents have this picture of me, aged 2, sitting on the toilet at 3am, just screaming. I wanted to include it in this post but frankly it’s just way too traumatic to even look at  (Which leads me to wonder what kind of sick fuck sees their kid screaming and crying on the toilet at 3am and thinks ‘Hey, wouldn’t it be hilarious to take photos of this moment”?) But I digress…

Whereas most people who saw It developed a fear of clowns, I ended up developing a pathological fear of bathrooms.

                                 I don’t see scary, I see sexy                                            Image credit: uncyclopedia.wikia.com

I was 11 and for a few weeks after seeing the movie, I couldn’t go to the bathroom without having someone standing outside the door. Luckily at the time my school had a ‘buddy-system’ where we weren’t allowed to go to the toilet by ourselves anyway, thanks to a friendly neighborhood flasher who’d been seen creeping around on the school grounds.

But as I grew older, and my love of horror movies and games developed, I started to realise that my fear of bathrooms wasn’t going away anytime soon. I found Silent Hill to be one of the worst offenders in this respect – to the point where they deserve their own gallery of scary bathroom scenes.

This is actually pretty normal for a public toilet.                                          Image credit: http://www.toy-tma.com

The point is, every fucking horror game I have EVER played plays the ‘bathroom’ card at some point. Dead SpaceDead Island, Silent Hill, Resident Evil, Alone in the Dark – if it’s a horror game, you can guarantee that at some point there will be a bathroom, and in that bathroom will be one hell of a mother-fuckin’ jump-scare.

   It’s ok Dead Island, I forgive you because you were just one giant cliche anyway   Image credit: ibeatitfirst.com

Hell, even some not-horror games have scary bathrooms (and fuck you for that, Arkham Asylum):

                         Batman, possibly celebrating his 30th birthday                     Image credit: gamesradar.com

As a consequence, every time I play a horror game, and I have to explore a bathroom, without fail it makes me shit my pants.   “Well at least you’re in the right room already!” LOLOLLOL fuck off.

            “Joke’s on you demonically-possessed urinal, I already pissed myself!”                               Image credit: destructoid.com

Maybe it just boils down to this solid piece of advice that TV advertising taught me: One day you’re gonna get caught with your pants down.

***

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