Scary movies got you down? Check out some not-so-scary ones

Fall is here, complete with its signature spooks, freaks and pumpkin treats. For college students in post-quarantine, Halloween typically means scary movies and a gross amount of candy. However, if you’re a bit of a scaredy-cat like me, then I’m sure you’ve often found yourself a little left out this time of year, when your friends have a horror movie night or want to brave a haunted house. 

I get it — watching someone walk into inevitable danger is anxiety-inducing, and will often leave you feeling tense throughout the entire movie. If the tension were broken for even the briefest of moments, for some of us scaredy-cats would have a solid chance at finishing a scary movie. The occasional quip or amusing moment in a film can help reduce anxiety. So if you or a friend are a little squeamish but still want to join in the Halloween fun, here are a few horror movies with comedic elements that you should definitely check out: “Happy Death Day,” “Ready or Not” and the “IT” movies. 

All these movies have elements of comedy littered throughout the plot that don’t completely overshadow or demean the dark storyline. However, “Happy Death Day” and “Ready or Not” both produce a sort of satire meant to poke fun at a character’s incompetence or motives. The fact that the antagonists of both movies are not of a supernatural nature, and the fact that they follow a “Final Girl” sort of character, make comedy appropriate in both films. Had the villains been demons from hell, the deaths would typically be more gruesome and ill-suited for comedy. The fact that the antagonists are mere mortals evens out the playing field and makes the likelihood of survival much more plausible. 

Unlike the other two movies, the comedy of the “IT” films is centered around the antics and interactions between the kids of “The Losers Club,” and is meant to provide more of a respite between the atrocious hallucinations and killings of the creepy eldritch clown. Considering that the “IT” saga is made up of supernatural horror movies, there are more jump scares and fewer comedic moments compared to the other two. The humor is more subtle in comparison, and is portrayed mostly through sarcasm, quips, crude jokes and a lot of cursing. 

Most of the comedy is provided by Finn Wolfhard, who plays Richie Tozier, a young boy who swears a mile a minute throughout the plot, often at the most inappropriate times. Tozier is by far my favorite character in both movies, and it was a joy to watch this loud-mouthed kid interact with each character, particularly his dynamic with germaphobe Eddie Kaspbrak. The special effects in the movie are phenomenal to say the least, and I find that this type of humor paired surprisingly well with this particular genre of horror.

Keep in mind that these movies are all still scary to some degree, so not everyone will find them enjoyable. If all else fails, check out the classic “Scary Movie” series, which has the sole goal of making fun of every scary movie trope and every person who has died stupidly in a horror film. 

The series is pure comedy and will leave you gasping from laughter as you watch a psychic pick a fight with a hairbrush lady inside a TV, or as a lonely college girl harrasses a ghost after a booty call gone wrong.  The five movies so far include  references to almost every famous horror movie in existence, and your friends will perk up in recognition and chuckle as these films’ concepts are mercilessly torn apart by the stupidity and incompetence of the main characters.