Marnie Piper, Splendora Cromwell, Benny the skeleton taxi driver — do any of these three names ring a bell? These iconic names are from the Disney Channel’s best Halloween movie series:“Halloweentown” (1998). Freeform, formerly known as ABC Family, is where I first watched Halloweentown as a kid, and it forever changed how I felt about this holiday.
This euphoria that many children get from preparing for Halloween was something that I had experienced as a kid, but unfortunately never saw the same level of thrill in my friends growing up. There were a couple that loved it, but once I watched “Halloweentown” for the first time in Kindergarten, there was one person that saw Halloween’s joy and wonder like me — Marnie Piper. From the first movie to the last, the character was full of wonder and dived into her life as a practicing witch, despite living in the mortal world most of her life.
This excitement and the wonder that kids feel at this age — the same feelings that Marnie felt is the same feeling I felt. Growing up, I was self-aware of how different I was, even if I liked that about myself, other kids didn’t. Unfortunately, people don’t like different, they want you to be basic. Marnie and I are here to tell you to never listen to them! They were, in fact, had no position to tell you what you should do with your life and that different is better, because it’s what makes you, you!
It’s so cheesy, but it’s the truth. Marnie didn’t look for acceptance from when she wanted to make friends, she assimilated. She understood other people and accepted others, and hoped they would accept her. She took a liking for her grandmother’s town, “Halloweentown,” because she excelled and got to be different however, whenever she wanted. It became her home.
This is my favorite Halloween movie to watch and the one I believe kids should start watching since it’s relatable to their excitement to the holiday. Of course, there are classics that Freeform runs along with this film like “Hocus Pocus” and “The Addams Family,” which are just as great, yet “Halloweentown” still stands out in my mind.
It’s relatable and realistic, resonating with anyone watching how a different and unique person in the mortal world, is actually an all powerful witch who is capable of using her powers for good. For people watching the movie for the first time, hopefully will spark their interest in Halloween again and maybe just for one day at of the year, they truly can be anyone they want to be.
Thank you, “Halloweentown” for sparking my interest in Halloween as a kid. Thank you for indirectly validating my different personality and showing how I can do and be anything with it, no matter what anyone says. And thanks to Freeform (even though I keep calling it ABC Family) for keeping this movie an Halloween staple even today.