Let's not forget about these 6 frightening Halloween specials from the 1970s

You won't need a Ouija board to bring back the memories of these Halloween specials.

Image: CBC Television

We're days away from Halloween, which means it's time to stock up on the candy and figure out those last-minute costumes. 

Even though it's ostensibly a kid's holiday, we can't help but feel excited whenever the leaves change color and the weather turns cooler. Halloween brings us back to the carefree days of our youth, running around the neighborhood and gathering as much chocolate as possible. 

We'll never forget the feeling — just like we can't forget about these Halloween television specials that aired when we were younger. Sure, everyone remembers It's the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown — but have you thought about Witch's Night Out recently?

Let's take a look back at these six specials that made Halloween, well, special.

1. Halloween with the New Addams Family (1977)

The Addams Family ended in the 1960s, but the original cast was back for one more round in 1977 with Halloween with the New Addams Family. The special contained the same charm as the original series, but looked like it was transplanted into the world of Norman Lear and Mary Tyler Moore.

You can read our full write up here

Image: The Everett Collection

2. Witch's Night Out (1978)

Two of the original members of Saturday Night Live, Dan Aykroyd and Gilda Radner, lent their voices to this animated special. The story centers around two kids who recruit a witch to help them find the scariest Halloween costumes around. But chaos ensues when the witch (Radner) loses her wand. The monochrome characters remind us of Inside Out or an ad for fruit candy.

Image: CBC Television

3. Once Upon a Midnight Scary (1979)

The hour-long special was like a Trilogy of Terror for kids. No, there wasn't a killer Zuni warrior doll. Instead, there was Vincent Price dressed as a vampire to introduce each story.

The first one focused on a boy investigating a mysterious light in a barn. The second spun the tale of Ichabod Crane. The final one was a bizarre tale of a clock hidden in a mansion that supposedly counted down to end the world. 

Image: CBS

4. Mad Mad Mad Monsters (1972)

This animated television movie had it all: Frankenstein, Dracula, a werewolf, a mummy, Dr. Jekyll, Mr. Hyde and the Creature from the Black Lagoon. They all got together for the wedding of Baron Henry von Frankenstein and his fiancée. But things don't go as planned, as his assistant Igor wants to steal the bride-to-be. 

Image: Rankin/Bass Productions

5. The Paul Lynde Halloween Special (1976)

Paul Lynde's Halloween spectacular was one the whole family could enjoy, and it really was the party of the year. The special featured appearances from Witchiepoo from H.R. Pufnstuf, Tim Conway, Florence Henderson, Betty White, the band KISS, and Donny and Marie Osmond. The whipped cream on the pumpkin pie, however, was Margaret Hamilton reprising, for the first time, her role of the Wicked Witch of the West from The Wizard of Oz. 

Image: ABC

6. The Halloween That Almost Wasn't (1979)

The decade closed out with The Halloween That Almost Wasn't, a TV movie that once again reunited Halloween's spookiest characters. In the film, Dracula tries to save Halloween from a witch who wants to do away with the holiday. After its original run on ABC, the Emmy-winning special aired on the Disney Channel until 1996. 

Image: ABC

There were some scary TV movies, too.

Relive the most haunting TV movies from the 1970s. Read more

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TonyClifton 23 months ago
The Paul Lynde Halloween Special is pure gold! The first TV appearance of KISS, and The Wicked Witch of the West and Witchipoo appear together! Monumental! I love how Paul kept calling TWWotW "Margaret." This is a MUST-WATCH every Halloween in my household!
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