STUDIO: Warner Bros. Home Video
MSRP: $14.98
RUNNING TIME: Individual segments

The Pitch

According to certain Arbuckles, Halloween should be celebrated all year long.

The Humans

Some chick named “Hogarth” or something like that. I’m not sure. She’s a mumbler.

The Nutshell

A compilation of segments from Hogarth’s show, all themed toward making your Halloween just as perfect as it can be.

I know! I can’t believe it either.

The Lowdown

So, last time around with one of these deals I took a stab at making Bobby Flay’s scrumptious rib recipe. The result was decidedly less than scrumptious. This time, no food. That’s all right, because I’m equally inept at all areas relating to crafts.

Before I put my talents on the line, though, I’ll just mention a quick rundown of the disc. It’s not something that requires a lot of criticism. It’d be like trying to criticize Bob Ross. Can you imagine criticizing Bob Ross? “God damn it, Bob, your cloud is not happy enough.”

That makes the lowdown pretty easy to swallow, and difficult to argue: Martha Stewart’s Halloween Ideas accomplishes exactly its goal of providing personality-lite, content-heavy instructional materials. Elegantly packaged, and precisely what your mind’s eye envisions upon looking at the cover art. (My latest game is to make criticism wholly unuseful for historians of the future.)

Now, on to the fun part: In which Ian demonstrates how far he is from the target audience.

For my project this time around, I chose Glow-Stick Spiders. They look like this:

Step 1: The Materials

Before I could spread out my materials and truly get to work on this, my phsical opus, I thought I’d take a picture of my workspace.

You know what they say: cluttered mind, poorly-functioning libido.

Once I had excavated a corner of the table to work on, I laid out the tools of my craft.

Notice anything missing? Yeah. Glow sticks. You know how
many teenagers run around this little burg with glowstick juice matted
in their hair on Halloween night? All five of them. And those fuckers
bought up every last glowstick that I could be bothered to look for.
Instead, I used that thing on the far left: a battery-powered glow stick. Which I happened to get in my stocking last year for Christmas, because my brother is awesome.

Step 2: Fumbling Toward Productivity

Immediately upon beginning construction, my cat (who
has, at various times, been known as Lobster Johnson, Bonnie Prince
Charlie, and Ensign Fuckstick) decided to intervene on my behalf. It
was necessary that he examine the workmanship up close, and also to
test the stability of the piece. That thing I’m dangling the arachnid
thorax from… yeah, well, do you know when you have really heavy flow
in your carotid, and nothing else will do?

Just remember: Everybody bleeds on the inside.

Step 3: I’m Kinda Like God

At this stage of cooking, I’ve generally slowed down in
my pace due to having to hold at least one whole hand underneath the
cold water tap. Not so with this piece of decor! If anythin, the job
became easier, as I brought the creature’s head into marriage with its

At this point, the batteries in my GLOW ROD died, and I
had to replace them, which involved twisting the spider’s fucking head
off. After replacing the batteries, I found that I could activate or
deativate the spider’s glow of life just by rotating its skull
one-hundred-eighty degrees. Let’s see you do that with your stupid,
cold light tech, Hogarth.

Step 4: Arachnophilia

And the product was finished! The legs are supposed to
be made out of those thinner, fiber-optic glow sticks. I found
neon-colored flexi-straws instead.

Did you know that sipders have eight legs?

There you have it. I came up with an insect who has a glowing neck. Shine on, you crazy trash candidate.

Bonus for your imagination: GLOW RODS don’t glow with cool light. Also, Styrofoam does not react well to heat.

The Package

nice, easily navigable set of organized segments. You got your
pumpkins, your costumes, your decorations, your treats, your
sooper-dooper trick-or-treat bags, and your makeup. As always with
these discs, the DVD-ROM content includes links to the website on which
you can find instructions and recipes.

7 out of 10