IGG coming soon

Canadian micro-publisher Spectacular Optical is pleased to announce its forthcoming book devoted to the darkside of holiday entertainment, YULETIDE TERROR: CHRISTMAS HORROR ON FILM AND TELEVISION, to be released in the last quarter of 2017. This comprehensive new collection of essays is set to deck your halls with insightful looks at all your festive fright favourites, from the BBC’s A GHOST STORY FOR CHRISTMAS series to SILENT NIGHT, DEADLY NIGHT (and the ensuing controversy), from Eastern European folk-horrors all the way up to the seasonal succubi of the “New French Extremity”—followed by a compendium of nearly 200 Christmas horror film reviews.

Pre-order through our online store HERE >>

YULETIDE TERROR follows on the success of Spectacular Optical’s previous books KID POWER!, SATANIC PANIC: POP-CULTURAL PARANOIA IN THE 1980s—the latter of which promptly sold out and was reprinted in a second edition by the UK’s FAB Press–and LOST GIRLS: THE PHANTASMAGORICAL CINEMA OF JEAN ROLLIN. It is the fourth book in Spectacular Optical’s ongoing series of limited run film and pop culture books.

Contributors to YULETIDE TERROR include Stephen Thrower (NIGHTMARE USA), Kim Newman (NIGHTMARE MOVIES), Caelum Vatnsdal (THEY CAME FROM WITHIN: A HISTORY OF CANADIAN HORROR CINEMA), longtime FANGORIA editor Michael Gingold, Shelagh Rowan-Legg (THE SPANISH FANTASTIC), Alexandra West (FILMS OF THE NEW FRENCH EXTREMITY), Michael Helms (FATAL VISIONS), Andrea Subissati (The FACULTY OF HORROR Podcast), Zack Carlson (DESTROY ALL MOVIES!!!), Joanna Wilson (THE CHRISTMAS TV COMPANION), Diane A. Rodgers (CINEMA RETRO), Andrew Nette (PULP CURRY), Amanda Reyes (MADE FOR TV MAYHEM), David Bertrand (SATANIC PANIC), David Canfield (SCREEN ANARCHY), Eric Zaldivar (co-writer, DJANGO LIVES!), Leslie Hatton (POPSHIFTER), Owen Williams (EMPIRE), Ralph Elawani (BLEU NUIT: HISTOIRE D’UN CINÉPHILIE NOCTURNE), Derek Johnston (HAUNTED SEASONS: TELEVISION GHOST STORIES FOR CHRISTMAS AND HORROR FOR HALLOWEEN), Neil Mitchell (Devil’s Advocates: CARRIE), Chris Hallock (DIABOLIQUE), Ariel Fisher (RUE MORGUE), Lee Gambin (NOPE, NOTHING WRONG HERE: THE MAKING OF CUJO), Zach Clark (writer/director, WHITE REINDEER) as well as Spectacular Optical co-editors Kier-La Janisse (HOUSE OF PSYCHOTIC WOMEN) and Paul Corupe (CANUXPLOITATION).

The cover is illustrated by British artist Alisdair Wood, who has also created the chapter headings throughout the book.

The launch of YULETIDE TERROR will be accompanied by screenings and events in multiple cities. Programmers:  To arrange an event at your venue, contact us at


Ringing The Changes: Bob Clark’s Black Christmas
By Stephen Thrower

Christmas Shocking: The Silent Night, Deadly Night Controversy
By Michael Gingold

“Protecting (Not Punishing) Billy”: Gilmer McCormick on Silent Night, Deadly Night
By Lee Gambin

Christmas Evil and the Cultural Myth of the Foolkiller
By Florent Christol

An Interview with Christmas Evil director Lewis Jackson
By Amanda Reyes

“They’re Not Working For Santa Anymore”: An Interview with Elves director Jeff Mandel
By Zach Clark

Christmas Campout: a Q&A with Campfire Tales co-director Paul Talbot
By Eric Zaldivar

It’s The Most Cynical Time of the Year: Christmastime in Horror Anthology Television
By Amanda Reyes

Tales From the Crypt‘s “And All Through the House”: An Interview with Screenwriter Fred Dekker
By Kier-La Janisse

Why the Ghost Story at Christmas?
By Derek Johnston

Terror and Transformation: The Enduring Legacy of A Christmas Carol
By Leslie Hatton

Warnings to the Curious: The BBC’s A Ghost Story for Christmas
By Kier-La Janisse

Robin Redbreast and BBC’s Play for Today: 1970s Folk Horror for Christmas
By Diane A. Rogers

A Hammer Film for Christmas: Cash on Demand
By Kim Newman

“Hello, Dave!”: The Joyful Misanthropy of The League Of Gentlemen Christmas Special
By Owen Williams

Our Best Tree Ever: When Experimentalists Tackle Yuletide Terror
By Caelum Vatnsdal

Santa Brought a Syringe: Robert Morin’s Petit Pow! Pow! Noël
By Ralph Elawani

All I Want for Christmas is You: Franck Khalfoun’s P2
By Alexandra West

Silent Night, Holy S*#t: Holy Terror and the Dark Side of the Nativity
By David Canfield

Won’t Someone Think of The Children?
By Andrea Subissati

An Interview with Alain Lalanne, the child hero of René Manzor’s 3615: Code Pere Noël
By Federico Caddeo (translated by Lee Paula Springer)

Santa Vs. Satan: How Santa Conquered Hell and Mars to Create Holiday Horror
By Zack Carlson

Stolen Voices and Kooky Carols: Yvonne Mackay’s The Monster’s Christmas
By Kier-La Janisse

Surviving the Yuletide Season: Alcohol, Physical Affliction and Murder Down Under in The Evil Touch
By Andrew Nette

Apocalypse Sinterklaas: Santa Claus’ Horror Roots in European Folklore
By David Bertrand

Horns for the Holidays: The Krampus Conquers North American Horror Films
Paul Corupe

(featuring nearly 200 Christmas Horror Film and Television reviews!)


About the author:

Kier-La Janisse

Kier-La Janisse is a film writer and programmer, Editor-in-Chief of Spectacular Optical Publications, founding director of The Miskatonic Institute of Horror Studies and the Festival Director of Monster Fest in Melbourne, Australia. She has been a programmer for the Alamo Drafthouse Cinema and Fantastic Fest in Austin, Texas, co-founded Montreal microcinema Blue Sunshine, founded the CineMuerte Horror Film Festival (1999-2005) in Vancouver and was the subject of the documentary Celluloid Horror (2005). She has written for Incite: Journal of Experimental Media, Filmmaker, Offscreen, Shindig!, Rue Morgue and Fangoria magazines, has contributed to Destroy All Movies!! The Complete Guide to Punks on Film (Fantagraphics, 2011), and is the author of A Violent Professional: The Films of Luciano Rossi (FAB Press, 2007) and House of Psychotic Women: An Autobiographical Topography of Female Neurosis in Horror and Exploitation Films (FAB Press, 2012). She recently co-edited and published the anthology books KID POWER! (Spectacular Optical, 2014) about kids in cult film and television and Satanic Panic: Pop-Cultural Paranoia in the 1980s. She is currently working on the book A Song From the Heart Beats the Devil Every Time about children’s programming from 1965-1985.


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