Yeah, I know. It’s another slasher movie parody. But wait, this one has musical numbers! Of a sort.
Camp Blood: The Musical is a 30 minute shot-on-video short film which, by the creators’ own admission, was filmed in only two days on a budget of less than $200… most of which was spent on official Camp Blood t-shirts and beer. Despite this (or maybe because of it), the film managed to win the Audience Award at the RI International Horror Film Festival and picked up the honors for best actor and best original song from the LYM Online Horrowshow.
Alas, the following number (which is decidedly a hard PG-13 in content) is not the tune that won. But hey, you know, since the whole setup of this song is to introduce the usual set of slasher stereotypes, why not see if you can guess which of our happy campers turns out to be the Final Girl?
Well, that should have been pretty easy, but just in case you’re still not sure, I’ll give you a hint: non-girls, whiny goth chicks, and cocaine sniffing trollops don’t typically get to be the Final Girl. That’s because, as we discussed way back in our review of Student Bodies, slasher movies often take the form of Morality Plays, a form of secular theater in which allegorical characters representing vices and virtues face a number of perils, with only the ones who stick to the moral path left standing in the end.
So why do these kids continuously ignore all of the warning signs (not to mention the Crazy Ralphs) in their blind pursuit of premarital sex, illegal drugs, more premarital sex, slovenly drunkenness, and even more premarital sex, especially once they start to notice the body count of those engaged in such pursuits start to rise? Well, most likely it’s because it only took them about five minutes to figure out that all that stuff can be pretty pleasurable. And pleasure’s not necessarily a bad thing in and of itself. Any teenager will tell you that.
But as St. Thomas Aquinas points out, “God wills some greater good that cannot be without the loss of some lesser good.” And that brings us to the big philosophical word of the day: concupiscence. (That’s kon-kyoo-pi-suhns for those of you like me who never heard that word come up even once during Sunday School.) “Etymologically, concupiscence can refer to any intense form of human desire.” the Catechism explains, however “Christian theology has given it a particular meaning: the movement of the sensitive appetite contrary to the operation of the human reason. The apostle St. Paul identifies it with the rebellion of the "flesh" against the "spirit." Concupiscence stems from the disobedience of the first sin. It unsettles man's moral faculties and, without being in itself an offense, inclines man to commit sins.”
In a sense, especially in the context of something like Camp Blood, concupiscence can be seen as our human tendency to settle for lesser goods like immediate sexual gratification rather than exercise our reason and put off those pleasures until they can be directed towards a greater good like holy matrimony. And that’s the challenge for us parents and teachers out there, isn’t it? Not to convince kids that the pleasures they’re chasing after aren’t good, but to show them that they’re not good enough. But how do we do that?
Well, your guess is as good as mine. But it was interesting to note in a 2005 New York Times article that “Catholic teenagers were far less apt to affirm belief in a personal God, to report having ever undergone a very moving, powerful worship experience, or to say their faith was extremely important in shaping their daily lives or major life decisions.” Maybe we can start by letting our kids see those things in our own lives.
Or we can just show them something like Camp Blood and say, “See, bad kids die!” Me, I’ve tried both.