Child’s Play has had an upgrade with the 2019 remake. Indeed, everyone’s favourite killer doll has gone digital. But Chucky hasn’t forgotten his roots as one of the 1980s’ most iconic villains. Watch closely, and you’ll see that the all-new Child’s Play is crammed with blink-and-you’ll-miss-them nods to the 80s. Here are some of the most retro-tastic references.
In the original Child’s Play, Chucky was part of the Good Guys doll range. In 2019 he’s been rebranded as part of all-new, WiFi-ready Buddi range. It’s not a reboot for the sake of it – it’s a reference to the real-life range of My Buddy dolls produced in the mid-80s by Hasbro, which was Child’s Play creator Don Mancini’s original inspiration for Chucky. It’s little wonder they’ve inspired a legacy of horror – just one look at these mini plastic terrors is enough to give you nightmares for a week.
Han’s Not The Man
The doll might have been branded as Buddi, but he still needed a proper name. When Andy is given the opportunity to name his new best pal, he immediately chooses “Han Solo”. Fair enough, because Han Solo is pretty much the coolest guy from any galaxy – whether it’s far, far away or much closer to home. But it’s also a gag for the film geeks, because this time around the doll is voiced by Mark Hamil, who played Luke Skywalker in Star Wars. No wonder the doll immediately rejects Han Solo an opts for the classic “Chucky” moniker instead.
Old School Horror Hound
In terms of horror, Andy is no new kid on the chopping block. Despite only being 13-years-old, he likes to keep things strictly retro. Indeed, he’s not just the lead character in a reboot of one of the 1980s’ best loved horror franchises, but his walls are covered with nerd-friendly posters of other 80s’ cult classics – Killer Klowns from Outer Space and Poltergeist III. But there’s an extra hidden meaning behind these posters – both movies were released in 1988, the same year that the original Child’s Play first hacked its way into cinemas.
Inspiration From Another Icon
Posters on his bedroom wall is one thing, but Andy proves he’s a hardcore horror lover by actually watching Texas Chainsaw Massacre 2. Seeing Texas Chainsaw 2 play out is a cool 80s horror reference on its own, but horror aficionados will know why it was included – it’s a hugely smart fan favourite that puts a twist on the original, just like the new Child’s Play. It also serves as some inspiration for Chucky, who later tears the face of his first victim clean off – in honour on Leatherface himself!
Hey You Guys!
Any film about a gang of kids trying to save the day brings back memories of 80s classic The Goonies. And a special nod in the new Child’s Play that could have fans calling out The Goonies’ famous “Hey you guys!” catchphrase. One of the film’s best gags sees Andy try to keep Chucky’s murderous handiwork literally under wraps – a severed head bundled up in birthday wrapping paper. When the head is finally revealed it bears more than a passing resemblance to The Goonies’ unlikely ally Sloth.
Another Little Monster
No 21st century tech is worth buying unless there’s a selection of expensive accessories (sold separately, of course). And the Buddi doll is no different. Produced by the Kaslan Corporation, Buddis have a range of alternative costumes, including a teddy bear outfit. Cute, right? Well, no actually, because another one of the costumes is a leprechaun dress-up-kit, a none-too-subtle nod to the Leprechaun horror franchise, in which the tiny Irish monster (played by Warwick Davis) killed his victims in a whole manner of magical-but-gruesome ways. Could we see a Child’s Play vs Leprechaun crossover movie next?
Chucky Go Home!
The Goonies isn’t he only Steven Spielberg movie to be referenced in Child’s Play. Because you can’t have a movie about a boy and his puppet-looking pal without bringing to mind the original boy and his puppet-looking pal story – ET. When the all-new Chucky connects to the cloud to control other Kaslan electronic products, his finger glows just like ET’s. Forget Child’s Play vs Leprechaun. Child’s Play vs ET, anyone?!
Dead or Alive…
In the climax of the movie – a wild and hilarious splatter-fest set in the store where Andy’s mum works – Chucky uses that cloud (yes, things have come a long way since the days of voodoo magic) to not only control other electronics, but weaponise them too. Among them is a remote control police car that revs up and blurts out an 80s classic. “Dead or alive, you’re coming with me.” It’s a line from the greatest of all 1980s police officers – RoboCop!
From Orion Pictures and KatzSmith Productions, Child’s Play will be available to buy on Digital download from 11th October and to buy on Blu-ray/DVD and Digital Rental from 21st October.