Dolls don’t scare me the way they do most people. Honestly. I enjoy the unsettling feeling I get staring at creepy dolls.
I’m in a Facebook Group called The Spirit of Halloween. What I love about it is that, although sometimes we promote our work, it’s not a see-me board; rather, it’s a group of people who love talking about what scares them and horror books and films, among other things. Mostly, it’s lots and lots of really amazing scary artwork.
One of my favorite weekly events over there is “Creepy Doll of the Week.” Everyone contributes and it’s a ball. But seeing doll after doll, week after week, I began to wonder what it is, exactly, about dolls that scares us.
Enter Joyce Carol Oates’ short story “The Doll,” which I just recently discovered. I won’t put spoilers here, but I will say the theme of lost innocence (as a type of death) is prevalent. After I’d finished, I put my finger on what it was about dolls that unsettled me.
Their eyes are dead.
And those eyes foreshadow our own post-mortem.
Okay, that was my dark thought for the day. Here are a couple of recent “creepy doll” photos which I either have or will be contributing to “Creepy Doll of the Week”–a couple from my friend Kristina Hals Strobel, who has a collection to be envied and who’s been generous enough to share her photos with me. Enjoy.