Urban Legends Turn essay example

1,331 words
Joel Beckwith Febuary 13, 2001 Urban Legends In this paper I will explain exactly what an urban legend is, and give some examples of very popular ones that have been passed byword of mouth for decades across the United States. 1 ' An urban legend is a story that is so bizarre, horrifying, or unexplainable, that it makes something inside of us want to believe it. ' Urban Legends can have traced origins from other countries, universities, states, or people, that just decided to made up as incredible story and pass it on to their friends and family members. Many of these legends were started in the sixties and seventies, and still continue to be passed on to this day. A good example, is the horrifying Pop Rocks death. 2'In the seventies, school kids passed on the rumor that if Pop Rocks candy was eaten with any kind of soda, the person's insides would explode'.

A legend that eventually forced the candy company company to prove as untrue. Most urban legends are began with 'friend of a friend', which is a key in realizing that what you are going to hear is probably untrue. When I was in second grade, a famous legend was passed to me, the story of the 'well to Hell'. Reportedly, down in Mexico, a group of men were drilling holes in the ground looking for oil. These holes were thousands of feet deep, and the men heard horrifying screams coming from the depths below. Supposedly these these terrible sounds were coming from Hell.

This story caused much debate among the Christian community, and was repeating in news letters, and radio talk shows around the country. Eventually, an urban legend investigator traced the story to a school teacher who admitted that she made the whole thing up. As legends are passed from person to person the stories are modified and changed until several versions of the story actually exist. A good example of a mixed story is the classic urban legend of the vanishing hitch hiker. Most versions of the story are told of a tall thin hitch hiker walking down the road until he gets picked up. As the stranger is in the car he stays quiet and doesn't speak until he says 'The end is near' and disappears right before the drivers eyes.

Other versions are told of a young girl who does the same thing sometimes the hitch hiker claims 'Jesus is coming again 'right before he goes, but anyway it's told this story is simply a legend that has been passed on and on for many years. Many legends include psychotic elderly people who decide to kill people or things. One story is of an elderly woman who decides to dry her wet dog in the microwave (the dog explodes.) Other legends with the elderly include a crazy woman that kills taxi drivers as they pick her up, and old men that eat little children! Many urban legends involve gruesome deaths and murders.

This particular legend was supposed to have happened at the University of Illinois campus. A girl got off one evening and made the way to the door where she lived. She and her room mate had an agreement that if either one or them brought a guy back to their dorm, they would put a rubber band on the doorknob. When the girl got to the door, she found a rubber band and walked in without turning on the lights. She heard moving and heaving breathing, so she decided to go right to bed.

The next morning the girl woke up only to find her roommate gruesomely murdered. The girl screamed and ran for the door, but before she walked out she looked at the wall. Written in blood was a this message,' 'are " nt you glad you didn't turn on the lights?' 'Not all urban legends are completely untrue. There are many things that can be found in movies, cartoons, and shows.

One of the most popular known of these can be found in Disney's cartoons. Many times what is hidden is something of sexual content. The most explicit of hidden content in the Disney movies, is a scene in the Rescuers that only lasts about one second. The scene is of a topless woman in a window. 3'In 1999 Disney was forced to recall this version and replace it without the one second scene'. Another very popular scene is found in The Lion King.

In this movie Simba throws himself on a rock, letting a cloud of dust fly from under him, in this cloud the letters-E-X are supposed to be found. Some urban legends turn out to be coincidences. When the 1939 musical The Wizard of Oz is synced up with the 1973 album'The Dark Side of the Moon' over 80 coincidences occur. Here is a list of some similarities: 4 The lyric 'balanced on the perfect wave' occurs just as Dorothy is balancing on the pigsty fence. '... balanced on the biggest wave' as Dorothy balances on the fence, which leads into 'On The Run' as she falls off the fence. Chimes and bells sound just as Elvira Gulch appears on her bicycle. During the 'Time' guitar solo the fortune teller sign appears, reading 'past, present & future.

' The fortune teller tells Dorothy that she needs to go home as the lyrics play, 'home, home again. I'd like to be there when I can'. 'The Great Gig in the Sky' begins with the scene change to the tornado. The tornado is seen in the background just as the words 'and I'm not frightened of dying' is heard. When the window sash knocks Dorothy out, the wailing vocal subsides.

'Great Gig in the Sky' is playing as the house is airborne. The cash register in 'Money' is heard just as the color of Oz is seen. The ballerina Munchkins enter on the lyric 'us... us... us'. One ballerina appears to lip sync the words 'ordinary men' The Lollipop Guild Munchkins enter on the lyric 'me... me... me'. The Lollipop Guild's head motions sync h with the music. Dorothy turns to face forward on the lyric 'forward he cried.

' The Witch's appearance occurs on the lyric 'black... black.. ' On 'blue... blue... blue.. ' we cut to Dorothy, who of course is wearing blue. On the words 'and who knows which is which and who is who', we see the Wicked Witch of the West looking at the dead feet of the Wicked Witch of the East. For 'up... up... up', the Witch is on top of a r on 'down... down... down.. ', she is walking down.

'And in the end', the dead Witch disappears. 'Out... out... out', Good Witch G lynda exits in a bubble. The song 'Brain Damage' is played as the scarecrow sings 'If I Only Had a Brain. ' The heartbeat heard at the end of the album coincides with Dorothy listening to the Tin Man's heart.

(These similarities are found at web) Urban legends and their history can be a very interesting thing to devote your time to. The library has many good books on urban legends, one of the best is 'Too Good to be True: The Colossal Book of Urban Legends' by Jan Harold Brun vand. Jan Harold Brunvard has written other good books as urban legend references, including 'The Baby Train' and 'The Mexican Pet'. Overall I enjoyed writing this report and I have found urban legends to be very interesting and I hope to explore them mores a personal hobby.