Frat Monster (Pledge Night, 1990)

Pledge_Night_PosterIn this cautionary tale about frat hazing, we meet the next horror icon… Acid Sid.

Or maybe not, as I bet for most people, even horror fans, that elicited a bit of a “huh” reaction.

Pledge night tells the tale of Bonner, a college man who is pledging the biggest frat on campus. They are the standard “humiliate and terrorize your pledges” type of group.  And somehow, they have raised the ire of the spirit of Acid Sid…a hippie pledge who died in a pledge prank in the 60’s.

Acid Sid gets his name because he was thrown in a tub in which the frat had poured a bunch of ingredients…including some acid (by accident). So, he has a gooey visage and one liners. Sid works his way through the frat trying to kill everyone including Bonner, who the audience already knows is the son of Sid, as his mother stopped by to fill him in.

Sid seems like he has the power of Freddy Krueger, able to cause crazy deaths, but people can still run and hide from him. You add to that, he almost rape’s Wendy, the love interest of Bonner and when Bonner stops him, he tells him the murder spree was only to protect him. Are we suddenly supposed to see Sid through a sympathetic lens? He did not just target the frat brothers, he targeted the pledges as well. Wendy clearly did not support the hazing, why was she a target?

The one liners in this film do not stand out much, and Acid Sid fails to capture the imagination like other 80’s monsters and slashers. So, after several days of this month highlighting forgotten or at least lesser remembered gems, I have to say…there is good reason people don’t talk about Pledge Night.

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