The original Ringu movie, which I watched at home by myself a good many years ago, sent its biggest shiver down my spine as the end credits rolled. Why? Because my landline started ringing, and when I answered it there was no one there. Sure, that was one better than someone at the other end telling me I only had seven days to live, but it was still a little unnerving, considering the circumstances.
Another horror flick, The Grudge, I’m yet to watch. But having just witnessed one of the weirdest openings to a baseball game anyone’s likely to ever see anywhere in their entire life, I’m considering giving The Grudge a look. Although I can’t imagine it’ll be as good as this freakily oddball baseball stunt.
It took place in Japan last week at the opening of a national game between Hokkaido Nippon-Ham Fighters and the Yakult Swallows.
The carefully planned pre-game sequence featured the movies’ two iconic characters – Sadako from The Ring and Kayako from The Grudge – as well as a couple of giant furry mascots seen scuttling around the field.
At first, all seems normal, with the cheerleaders doing their bit to entertain the crowd. But then the picture on the giant video screen goes fuzzy and suddenly we’re looking at Sadako climbing out of a TV set, just like in the movie. The cheerleaders flee in terror as Sadako, who happens to be wearing a mitt and holding a ball, shuffles onto the field. Not far behind comes a ghoulish-looking Kayako, wielding a bat and being followed by her son Toshio.
The pro baseball players, watching from the dugout, understandably find the unfolding nonsense hilarious, though the kids in the crowd, who were expecting to see a baseball game rather than a horror show, may still be having nightmares.
The time comes for the first pitch, which, considering she has a face full of hair, is delivered with supreme accuracy by Sadako. Kayako connects, but inexplicably collapses to the ground on her way to first base. After some writhing around, Kayako is helped away by her son, while Sadako is escorted off the field by the furry mascots.
In case you’re wondering, the reason for the offbeat performance was to promote the new movie Sadako vs. Kayako, which, as its name cleverly suggests, pits the two vengeful spirits against one another.
If this bonkers baseball caper is anything to go by, it should be an entertaining watch.