While Valentine’s Day will undoubtedly bring the usual baggage associated with the material bribery of our significant others with bouquets, ostentatious candies and oversized teddy bears (do people actually buy those?), not to mention the ostracizing of single folks, this year’s amorous merriment actually falls on a fateful occasion. According to a memorable scene in the 1989’s Ghostbusters II, Feb. 14, 2016, stands as the date on which the world will END!
Sure, upon hearing that news, some people (who think movies are real) might be inclined to panic and raid stores for groceries, guns and toilet paper, rather than expensive heart-shaped red things that will be on clearance on Monday. However, it might be possible that the prophetic musings of Ghostbusters II had another target: its own universe.
Take that, Bassmasters!
The elaborately absurd assertion was made during Peter Venkman’s “World of the Psychic” talk show by a glazed-eyed, lady-mullet-sporting soothsayer named Elaine (Chloe Webb), who indicated that her source was an alien who felt the need to relay apocalyptic information from the inside of his room at the Paramus Holiday Inn (possibly a room on a spacecraft made up to look like a room at the Holiday Inn). Sure, those small details might cause one to dismiss the story. At best, it’s simply a bad alibi for a cuckolded husband. At worst, it’s a sign of delusion that needs to be treated.
Yet it’s worth noting that Venkman’s first guest, Milton Angland (Kevin Dunn), did, in fact, accurately predict what would have been the end of the world, foreseeing the events relating to the film’s latest malevolent spirit, who attempted to cultivate a slimy subterranean city-decimating substance that feeds on negative energy, a crisis the Ghostbusters eventually averted. So, with confirmation of the fact that Venkman’s “World of the Psychic” panel was at least 1 for 2, might it be possible that they actually did better? Did fate or other forces actually guide not one but two honest oracles into Venkman’s green room that day? Well, possibly. In fact, Elaine’s predictions actually have been validated ... from a certain point of view.
(Ruined) Childhood’s End?
While the dire date of February 14 may not be entirely accurate, the named year of 2016 undeniably turned out to be a critical one for the Ghostbusters franchise, which will see a reboot with the release of a new film on July 15. And what does a reboot mean for the continuity of one film series? The END. (*Unless you’re The Evil Dead).
Sure, Elaine’s apocalyptic Holiday-Inn-acquired prognosis was off by five months and a day, but the substance of it might be considered eerily accurate since it does name the specific year of the reboot movie and was even respectably close in terms of the timeframe within the given month (the 14th rather than the 15th). Say what you will, but there are some things about the Ghostbusters II prophecy of Elaine or, rather, screenwriters, in co-stars, Dan Aykroyd and the late Harold Ramis that justify raising an eyebrow or two.
Indeed, 2016’s Ghostbusters reboot film directed by Bridesmaids mastermind, Paul Feig, will implement not only a contextual reinvention of the classic poltergeist-imprisoning pictures, but will look to distinguish itself as a gender-swapped remix with stars like Kristen Wiig, Melissa McCarthy, Leslie Jones and Kate McKinnon. Confirming the film’s universe-resetting nature, Feig told EW as far back as 2014, “It’s not coming into the world that existed before.” Adding, “I wanted to come into our world where there’s talk of ghosts but they’re not really credible, and so what would happen in our world if this happened today?”
Human sacrifice, dogs and cats living together...girl Ghostbusters.
Putting aside the vociferously expressed reservations (to put it lightly) and lamentations of some, the impending reboot will (technically, anyway,) represent a dramatic overturning of the original Ghostbusters movie continuity. The “world” that stands to end is the one that Peter Venkman, Egon Spengler, Ray Stantz and Winston Zeddemore saved from the likes of overzealous phantom librarians, Gozer the Destructor, painting-dwelling Vigo the Carpathian, not to mention a meddling EPA bureaucrat who apparently “has no d***.”
Yet, in a move that likely sent shockwaves through the naysayers, the old world will end with the apparent blessing of the surviving original cast in Bill Murray, Dan Aykroyd and Ernie Hudson, who will each have cameo appearances of some kind. This could be seen as a prophecy-fulfilling act that essentially buries their former cinematic world.
"Well, better late than never."
Interestingly enough, as the fateful Valentine’s Day 2016 date loomed ever close, our esteemed oracle, Elaine, resurfaced and was kind enough earlier this week to provide a timely update 27 long years after her initial claim of romance-squashing doom and gloom. In full character, Chloe Webb, as Elaine, returned by way of a YouTube video (shot vertically… that’s SO Elaine!). Alive, well and no longer convinced that her hotel room abduction was apocalyptically prophetic, Elaine provides some (sort of) rational excuses for her prediction’s likely status as a dud.
While maintaining that the original forecast she delivered was based on the fact that the film’s deadly mood slime was “rising at such a rate,” she now concedes that her prediction stands null and void. So, rest easy folks! It appears that, barring any unconnected circumstances, you’ll get to spend this Valentine’s Day weekend either with your significant other or at the movies with Ryan Reynolds’ X-Men movie-universe-shattering, rampaging R-rated romp, Deadpool.
Elaine also relayed one final message from her former interplanetary Paramus Holiday Inn roommate stating, “as long as there’s more love than slime, the world goes on.” A spectral John Lennon couldn’t have sung such a sentiment any better.