Remember those days when you were a kid and you wished they sold t-shirts with your favorite movie monsters on them? Little could your younger self know that in just a few decades there would be an internet where people ply their artistic skills so you can have the eye-ball scene from Lucio Fulci's Zombie plastered on your chest in graphic detail. There are a lot of horror shirts to be had now that are officially licensed with original artwork. However, for every kick-ass vendor like Fright-Rags, or Cavity Colors, you have a metric ton of bullshit companies that have the artistic skill of pressing CTRL-V in Photoshop and calling it a day.
Thanks to social media, I get bombarded with advertisements peddling horror t-shirts that are "great deals". 99% of the time these designs are terrible and not worth a single penny of your money. I have compiled a list of the worst of the worst.
6 - Chucky's Cheeses
In the online world of horror t-shirts, the parody t-shirt is king. Most creators are looking for that mad t-shirt money and having to deal with pesky things like licensing. Thank goodness for parody being covered in "fair use" of copyright laws. Unfortunately, a lot of these ideas are a stretch at best. Speaking of stretches, case in point, Chucky's Cheeses. The humor of this shirt relies completely on name association. Yes, we get it, both characters are named Chucky. However, that's where all sense goes out the window.
I don't profess to know every minutia of the franchise, but I can say with some certainty that there isn't a Child's Play film where we learn Chucky's position on cheese. So suggesting that he is a Swiss cheese kind of guy is presuming much. Also, why is he wearing a chef's hat? Chucky Cheese dresses like a 90's skateboarding kid, he's not known for his baking skills. He's rad to the max. Also, take it from someone who knows, you can't make cheese from baking.
5 - Mighty Morbid Horror Rangers
Where to even begin with this one? This parody lacks in originality. Putting horror monster heads and weapons on costumed superheroes is lazy, at best. This is worse than Chucky's Cheeses above, as this one just throws different heads and weapons on character and calls it a day.
Also note that at least for some of the weapons here, they make an effort to try and do an amalgamation of the Power Ranger and monster weapons. It seems like after the first two (Jason and Leatherface) they kind of give up trying. Also, how menacing is a VHS tape and a... handkerchief? Honestly, how did someone think drawing this was going to look good?
4 - Mr. Slashers
When you go deep enough down the rabbit hole of horror t-shirts, you eventually start getting into some very specific niches. Mr. Slashers is a perfect example of this. A mash-up of the Mr. Man books and horror movies. So not only do you have to bank on someone being a horror fan, but you have to bank on someone being born between 1971 to 1981 who remembers these books. I vaguely remember them. Who is that infantile about their childhood that this shirt would appeal to them? Someone who wears this probably has a 500-meter limit to anyone under the age of 19 and is banned from the internet. In other words, not a hot sale.
3 - Freddy Hoodie
How can you fuck up a Freddy Krueger hoodie? Glad you asked! BEHOLD!
First of all, why does Freddy have slash marks on his own shirt? Did he have an itch and use the wrong hand? Also, he has four blades, not three. That's not something you can easily miss if you see a picture of Freddy Krueger. Let's also talk about the design, the "burn" hood looks like a wrinkled nut-sack, not exactly the best thing to wear on your head. The lines on the sleeve and the torso don't match. Then there are the cuffs. Nothing says cheap like a printed on the hoodie that doesn't even match.
Also, we live in a world where you can order a full knit Freddy Krueger sweater, why would anyone want this poorly crafted piece of shit?
2 - Blades
Horror t-shirts are kind of like internet memes, for every t-shirt design, there are people who will copy the design creating an endless sea of imitations. Even the shittiest designs get copied.
This brings us to Blades. Not only should the original artist be embarrassed, but anyone who saw this design and thought "Hey, I'm going to rip this off and make my own" need to have their head examined.
This has to be the laziest t-shirt design I have ever seen. Anyone can throw something like this together with a copy of Photoshop and a half-hour to kill. To pay someone over 20 dollars for something this awful speaks of a level of laziness that I can't even contemplate.
Also, some of the design choices are a stretch. Take the second version, why would Pinhead's face be reflected in the Lament Configuration in color? Wouldn't it be reflected in gold? Then there's the Candyman's hook... How do you reflect his face on a hook and make it look anything recognizable? The worst of this ensemble is the Freddy glove, with it's horribly edited Freddy face in the blades. It's like someone took a disturbed teenager's graphic arts project and printed it on a shirt.
1 - No Lives Matter
The more tasteless the t-shirt, the more derivative copycats come out of the woodwork. This is doubly so when it comes to a vaguely political statement. No surprise, when #BlackLivesMatter became a thing, some designers thought it would be hilarious to appropriate the movement with No Lives Matter. Nothing says edgy like bastardizing a political statement for the sake of a tasteless joke, especially when it will ultimately become dated.
I pulled up all these variations by doing a Google image search. There is an endless sea of these shirts.
You know the type of person who wears a god awful shirt like this?
The type of idiot who posts pictures of themselves holding guns in front of a camera to look tough. Unfortunately for the guy above, he took this "bad ass" picture while still in plain view of the decorative kittie heads they have hung up in their bedroom. You kind of lose your edginess when your bedroom is decorated by grandma. When this guy eventually goes on a shooting spree, there will be an APB out for the Sloth lookalike in sensible slacks.