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As both an insatiable horror fan and an indulgent eater, what scares me is of a special recipe. Yes, I’m a “foodie.” At the end of a long, arduous week, my immediate comforts are starchy, liberally sauced, and sometimes glazed. Food is nourishment. Food is safe. Food is the constant I can turn to in times of need, depression, and anxiety. Which is why Stephen King’s “Jade Of The Orient” incident in IT will forever remain a favorite cornucopia of frightful kitchen nightmares.
These fears stem from a place of nostalgia. Think back to family dinners, prepared by whoever handled lead chef duties (mama in my household). Maybe you had an eventful or dreadful day at school, and afterward, you came home to the smell of Beef Stroganoff that’d stick to your bones. Or waking up to a pot of simmering “Sunday Gravy” with wafts of garlic and oregano. Food, at least in my mind, connects to memories of shared conversations, delicious meals, and happiness derived from a full belly. Nothing bad ever happens when homemade mac and cheese is on the table. That’s why Stephen King’s ability to taint these sacred memories shakes a cuisine lover like me to their core.
King - Work - Course - Horror - Subgenres
It’s not just King’s handy work, of course. “Culinary Horror” is one of the few subgenres I believe is actually scarier – er, more stomach-turning – when depicted on screen. Tommy Lee Wallace’s 1990 adapted miniseries first brought King’s digestible demons to life, and now, Andy Muschietti’s IT Chapter Two is spicing things up with modern techniques. While reading, my mind wanders to unspeakable places when dreaming up ghoulish figures– anyone can design their own imaginary Pennywise from King’s written description – but in contrast, my brain censors any gullet-gory thoughts. That’s where Wallace and Muschietti’s effects team achieves their...
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