Blood Drips Heavily on Newsies Square

So, I have this whole gun control/economics post I've been laboring on, but I scrapped it to bring  you something way, WAY more important.

If any of you knew me between 7th and 9th grade and also now as an adult with no excuse for myself, I adore Newsies.  I'd characterize my middle school love for Newsies as an "obsession," except it doesn't quite do justice to how extreme and all-encompassing of a mania I had.  Now, it's been years since I dabbled in the bizarre, culty teenage-girl underground that is true Newsies fandom, but about a week ago I got "King of New York" stuck in my head and just couldn't get it out.  So, as any self-respecting adult attorney person with real friends would do, I dug out my Newsies cast album (from the film not the MUSICAL which changes all the damn LYRICS) and had myself a listen.

Well, my husband caught me, and it actually turned out pretty poorly for him: we revisited a conversation that I'd let slide/blocked out/repressed many years ago during our early courtship when he told me he'd never seen Newsies.  (Allowing this injustice to persist uncorrected for so many years is a testament to my mounting maturity and also 'cause my husband is super hot, y'all.)  Unfortunately for him, I own the DVD (though, truth be told, I prefer my vintage VHS that I taped off of The Disney Channel back in the '90s), and we sat down and Andrew drank a whole, whole lot and lovingly watched it.

DINOSAUR!!! Because now all my favorite things are here!!
And, while of course it's cheesier and sillier and sappier and more melodramatic and ridiculous through the lens of adulthood, a lot of my opinions about Newsies remain unchanged.  (After all -- didn't we all know how cheesy and unrealistic it was when we watched it in middle school? We just loved it anyway!)  Today, I still love the things about it I loved when I was 14 -- the rousing dance numbers, Christian Bale dance-riding a fake horse, Bill Pullman saving the day, that one shot where you can see one of the Brooklyn guys' junk as he climbs out of the water -- and I still stand by my criticisms: it's too long (over 2 hours!), the whole Ann Margaret storyline blows, and it was mismarketed as a kid movie instead of being aimed at its true target audience, preteen girls. I thought about writing a whole post with my changed impressions of the movie, but those are pretty much it. (Other than noticing like a whole ton of super gay subtext this time around.  Like all the newsies are pretty gay for each other.  And David and Bill Pullman are totally gay together. And Snyder is way gay for Jack, but I think Jack's pretty gay for David, which is hard. That's the real story line.)

(Who you calling gay?)

Anyway, THE POINT OF THIS POST is that while Rotten-Tomatoes-ing during my re-watch, I found something else that came up when I searched Newsies.  It's called "Blood Drips Heavily on Newsies Square," and it is a "25 minute, homemade, newsies horror-film spoof, was made in 1991 on the back lot of Universal Studios during the shooting of the movie Newsies."  WHAT? WHAT?!?!?!?  It was written, directed, produced by, and stars the Newsies actors (including Mark David [aka "Specs"] playing Don Knotts -- again I say to you WHAT?!?!?!?!), and it is a HORROR MOVIE.  This is literally the greatest thing ever, and I am just so, so glad that my AOL dial-up connection in 1999 did not allow me to find this on the internets because I WOULD HAVE EXPLODED AND DIED and my parents would've watched my "Newsies" VHS in mourning and when the tape got wonky they would've found out how much I used to rewind and pause the movie on that one Brooklyn guys' junk shot.  In other words: it would've been a disaster.

But now, from the fortress of Adulthood and Real Friends, I was able to watch "Blood Drips Heavily on Newsies Square," that great adverbial horror movie, without fear.  (But also, I still kind of exploded with happiness. Only now I have a blog to channel it into and not my Newsies newsletter.  P.S. that happened. )  So, now I get to bring all of my Boomstickers this insane awesomeness for your enjoyment. Warning, it may be NSFWWE (Not Safe for Watching Without Exploding).

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