Was there ever a month weirder than November 2020?
After a presidential election that seemed to drag on for eons, the result of which lacking a traditional feeling of finality, this November feels like it doesn’t belong to itself. I barely finished flossing trick or treat candy from my teeth on Halloween night when it seemed the whole world switched to Christmas on a dime. In what felt like an instant, corporate America came knocking with its annual sales pitch for ribbons and bows. Yet in a year marred by the greatest health crisis of this generation, the upcoming holiday season can’t help but feel especially manufactured and devoid of the holly jolly.
After all, the harvest season is still vibrant with fall foliage, crisp afternoons and the sweatery vibes we all pined for in the summertime. When we hit the gas on Christmas, we blow by the last weeks of fall with disregard for the natural progression of the seasons. To me, November is a chillier extension of October’s spooky goodness.
And for that reason, though I may be in the minority, I want more Halloween. And due to circumstances created by the ever-bizarre COVID-19 pandemic, we may be getting more of it.
This Friday the 13th, director Christopher Landon’s new slasher comedy Freaky (2020) is set to hit theaters. In what looks to be a Happy Death Day rendition of the cult comedy The Hot Chick (2002), serial killer Vince Vaughan switches bodies with a female teenager. I couldn’t be more excited for a breath of goofy air in film at the moment, especially one that appears to hold up the weight of its ridiculous, hilarious premise. I imagine Freaky could have been a successful pre-Halloween release however, originally titled Freaky Friday the 13th, the film was intentionally set to release two weeks after the holiday.
Because we’re living in a time of postponement and cancellations, I see a mid-November release of Freaky with as much potential for success as timely Halloween run in theaters. The way we consume film and media has changed so drastically in a matter of months; the rules of celebrating seasonal holidays have also become arbitrary. Suddenly a Halloween movie weeks after the fact doesn’t seem so late to the party.
A great number of big-name releases saw delays this year. Films like A Quiet Place Part II and Jordan Peele’s reimagined Candyman were high on my list before Coronavirus put movie theaters in a miserable limbo with the latter of the projects stripped of an official release date completely. I imagine this trend will continue, leading to an odd period in the future where we will be consuming a lot of backlogged media.
This November might just be a home for some of those postponements (See: Hulu’s Run (2020), moved from Mother’s Day to the end of this month). If that’s the case, I don’t mind lingering in autumn for just a while longer. When I put my fork down at the Thanksgiving table, I might then consider shedding my Scrooge exterior for the winter. But as long as there are crunchy leaves beneath my feet, Halloween will remain my creepy coping mechanism for a year that feels full of Friday the 13ths.