iconic halloween shows 10 Childhood Halloween Specials No Longer on TV

Halloween has become a time for horror movie sequels about a demon with a silly name. But it wasn’t always that way. Many of us remember a time when Halloween entertainment was rife with specialty programming – some that we only saw once a year.

Although television still continues the trend of special Halloween episodes (originally started by Roseanne), there are more than a few iconic Halloween specials which have fallen to the wayside.

Covering many generations in this single list, those who grew up in the ’80s and ’90s will likely remember these Halloween specials more than others. Even so, most people should fondly remember at least one of these from their childhood. New or old, love ’em or hate ’em, all of these Halloween specials have one thing in common: you will not find them airing on a television near you anytime soon.

mr boogedy 10 Childhood Halloween Specials No Longer on TV

If you grew up in the generation of Boogedy, this Halloween staple is something that you definitely remember – even if those memories are skewed by childhood. Originally airing as the Disney Sunday Movie, Mr. Boogedy follows a novelty gift salesman as he and his family move into a new house haunted by the spirit of a colonial ghost.

While “beware the Boogedy man” may have once terrified an entire generation enough to garner a sequel, Bride of Boogedy, it’s almost impossible to be frightened by the movie nowadays.

Still, owning a gag-gift store would be pretty fun – and not just because they can be used to battle ghosts. Hear that, Toby from Paranormal Activity? That’s how we made waste of evil spirits back in the day… with rubber vomit and whoopie cushions.

Where to watch it: Vimeo and YouTube

the hallowee tree 10 Childhood Halloween Specials No Longer on TV

Based on the Ray Bradbury novel of the same name, The Halloween Tree finds four friends chasing after their friend Pip’s spirit, in an attempt to prevent his death while his body lay in the hospital. As you can tell, this cartoon was a bit dark for children looking to get into the candy-collecting mood. But it was still a great Halloween movie.

With Bradbury as narrator and Leonard Nimoy as the spirit dealer Mr. Moundshroud, The Halloween Tree takes the four friends on a time-traveling journey into the past to the learn the history of witches, skeletons, mummies and monsters, leading them to make an important decision about the future of their friend’s life.

Where to watch it: MySpace

the worst witch movie 10 Childhood Halloween Specials No Longer on TV

Growing up isn’t easy…

The Worst Witch used to be The Christmas Story of Halloween for the Disney Channel, airing constantly in October during the ’90s. Now you have to turn to Amazon to purchase a copy for your own enjoyment.

Based off of the popular Jill Murphy children’s books, Worst Witch not only told the tale of Mildred Hubble’s attempt to pass witch school, it also used Tim Curry singing (now-)iconic songs to do it. Remember, anything can happen on Halloween.

Harry Potter fans may be surprised to hear that name first associated with magic in this movie, twenty-one years before the first book came out. Witchcraft perhaps?

Where to watch it: YouTube

witches night out 10 Childhood Halloween Specials No Longer on TV

Gilda Radner heads up this former Halloween staple, Witch’s Night Out. Putting its iconic theme song aside, Witch’s Night Out is about a witch who brings two children and their babysitter to her Halloween party and transforms them into real-life versions of the creatures they’re portraying, allowing them to party with real monsters at her house.

After the rest of the town catches wind of real monsters being around, they begin to chase after them – including those who were previously transformed. In the end, the witch shows the town that Halloween is their chance to be anything they want for one night. Back to the theme song: it’s great!

Where to watch it: Veoh

mad monster party 10 Childhood Halloween Specials No Longer on TV

Arthur Rankin, Jr. and Jules Bass may be known best for their Christmas special, but they did much more than spread tales of Rudolph, Kris Kringle, and the Miser Brothers.

Serving as a full-length feature-film, Rakin and Bass bring their stop-motion animation to the familiar monsters of Halloween, along with the voices of Boris Karloff and Phyllis Diller. When Boris von Frankenstein decides to retire, his nephew, Felix, is set to take over his uncle’s monster business.

Unfortunately for Felix, his kind, human demeanor forces the rest of the monsters to team up against him in order to use Frankenstein’s latest machine for their own bidding. Just put one foot in front of the other… and kill Frankenstein’s nephew.

Where to watch it: YouTube

disney sleepy hallow 10 Childhood Halloween Specials No Longer on TV

The tale of Ichabod Crane and the Headless Horseman is almost as iconic as Halloween itself. Another piece of holiday fare from Disney, The Legend of Sleepy Hollow is based on the Washington Irving tale of the same name, which follows the terrifying adventure of Sleepy Hollow’s new schoolmaster, Ichabod Crane, battling the town’s ghostly Headless Horseman.

Like some of the other Halloween specials on the list, the ending of this tale was anything but happy for Crane – which probably wouldn’t sit well with viewers wanting to see Halloweentown II: Kalabar’s Revenge, even with Bing Crosby narrating it. The Legend of Sleep Hollow was originally the second-half of The Tale of Ichabod Crand and Mr. Toad.

Where to watch it now: YouTube

once upon a midnight scary 10 Childhood Halloween Specials No Longer on TV

Once Upon A Midnight Scary was a children’s horror anthology Halloween special that aired on CBS in 1979. Similar to such horror anthologies as Creepshow, Tales from the Crypt and V.H.S. (as of recent), Once Upon A Midnight Scary depicted three different literary horror stories during its hour-long run.

However, unlike its adult counterpart, this CBS special was meant to encourage children to read the original books – so only an excerpt of each story was shown. Still, each story was introduced by Vincent Price as a vampire. Can’t beat that.

Where to watch it now: YouTube

the midnight hour 10 Childhood Halloween Specials No Longer on TV

Before television had Rick Grimes and The Walking Dead, it had LeVar Burton and dancing zombies. Maybe not the best way to deal with the undead, but that’s how they did things in the ’80s.

The Midnight Hour follows four friends who unwittingly wake one for their deceased ancestors, who just happens to be a witch hellbent on bringing back the dead. With a ’50s cheerleader ghost by their side, it’s up to the group of kids to return things to normal.

Where to watch it: YouTube

tower of terror 10 Childhood Halloween Specials No Longer on TV

Pirates of the Caribbean may have made theme park ride-based films popular, but it was Tower of Terror that kicked things off. Starring Kirsten Dunst and Steve Guttenberg, Tower of Terror successfully creates a backstory for the hotel guests you see while on the Disney ride.

As ridiculous as the premise might be, Tower of Terror, like Pirates of the Caribbean, is actually pretty entertaining. Plus there are creepy old people – and Steve Guttenberg! Hey, at least they’re not playing Battleship.

Where to watch it: YouTube

flintstones rockula 10 Childhood Halloween Specials No Longer on TV

The Flintstones may have met many strange characters in their day, but this is the first time where Fred and Wilma’s relationship almost came to an (albeit brief) end.  As the title suggests, Rockula and Frankenstone are The Flintstones version of the iconic horror monsters – just with more “Yabba Dabba Do!”

After Fred wins the big prize on a game show, the Flintstones and the Rubbles find themselves in Rockula’s castle, with Rockula and Frankenstone now wandering around. Rockula wants to take Wilma as his bride, and she agrees.

But when Wilma asks Rockula to move to Bedrock and do daily chores around the house, Rockula decides to ditch his “long-lost love” for the bachelor life with Frankenstone.

Where to watch it: YouTube (not in English)

iconic halloween shows 10 Childhood Halloween Specials No Longer on TV

So there you have it…

There’s no doubt that this list brought back some childhood memories for everyone, and it’s unfortunate that most of these are difficult to obtain copies of. Hopefully our “suggestions” helped point you in the proper direction to relive some of those classic Halloween specials.

Are there any specials we should have included in the list? Let us know your favorites in the comments below.