Attention all dreamers and fantasists of the world! If you are a wretched earthling who likes to dwell in the otherworldly realm where spirits and apparitions rub shoulders with ghouls and goblins, it's time for you to awaken!
For All Hollows' Eve is here and it's time for you to channel the alter ego that lives inside of you, jostling with your mortal self to make an appearance! Many mere mortals may consider Halloween to be an occasion best celebrated by children, but you know well that it's no child's play.
For on this one day you get to be someone, or something unearthly; a creature feared or revered by many, depending on who you ask. It forever lives inside you, the desire to shapeshift, and the ability to tread the earth in a different avatar, to see the world through another creature's bloodshot eyes.
So without further ado, let us commence upon a discussion about the different ways your inner alter ego can be set free!
To begin with, let us focus on the importance of choosing the role you want to assume.
The Wicked Witch of the East is a popular choice, so is a ghoul. While it may seem typical with some creative twist these Halloween mainstays can be updated to feel new and fun. How about a bloodthirsty witch that preys on the innocent?
Daini, the Bengali rendition of a western witch is an innovative way to incorporate local twist. Nishi is the nightcralwer in Bengali folklore that lures her victims into losing their way at night. Or how about a Tokyo Ghoul, which is a nod to the anime lover inside you?
A demon in disguise in Dhaka is a fantastic fusion. How about exploring the homegrown spooky characters such as djinn? We all have spent mysterious evenings listening to scary tales about djinns and their nefarious, morbid ways of possessing human souls so this could be a great way to incorporate it into you Halloween guise.
Pishach is a flesh-eating demon that lurks in dark cemeteries to devour human flesh and soul, and is a popular urban legend in our country. It could be a great option.
Morbid characters from films and television have forever influenced and fed our fascination with the supernatural. A picture is worth a thousand words they say and a moving one even more so.
Vampires are a popular choice for Halloween and you are likely to bump into another Count Dracula or Stefan. Instead, step up your game by channeling Lestat de Lioncourt from "An Interview with a Vampire", who is as macabre as it gets and will set you apart from a sea of Edward Cullen wannabes.
Johnny Depp fans are spoilt for choice. Sweeney Todd the demon barber, Edward Scissorhands, Jack Sparrow, Willy Wonka — Depp sure gives his fans a wide variety of strange, sinister characters to emulate!
Ladies who love the classic Hitchcock movies can channel Melanie Daniels from The Birds, when she was attacked by killer ravens that left her bloody and unconscious. Marion Crane from Psycho is another option.
For the fantasists who live in a mythical world of their own with dragons and monsters, Jon Snow is a favorite. His elegant stride and dark, brooding nature is worthy of being channeled, as is Khaleesi's long white locks and queen-like demeanour.
Lord of the Rings fans can emulate characters from the movie such as Legolas or Sauron. Maleficent is stylishly sinister.
A more literary, less gory character is Erik from The Phantom of the Opera. With his cape and a mask that covers half of his face, he is charismatic as well as creepy. The great Bard once mused that the world is stage and we are all actors. There exist many among us who lead perfect lives yet underneath that cool façade exists a violent, psychotic individual, pining for blood. Such characters are the most grotesque, and hence unique.
Think Patrick Bateman from American Psycho, or Dexter Morgan from Dexter. The Bride from Kill Bill is fierce and fearsome. Harley Quinn from Suicide Squad is crazy and creepy. When channeling these guys you are likely to take things to the next level as there won't be another doppelganger!
While putting together an attire for your desired other self, appearance is everything. Calling it a costume would be a crime, for it is so much more. After deciding on the persona you wish to adopt, scour the shops and stores around Dhaka to put together the items you need.
There are not many specialty stores in our city sadly, but with a keen eye one can spot various elements from most places. Gulshan DCC market and Lavender convenience store sometimes carry masks, body paints and miscellaneous items needed to complete the look.
The makeup is all important and needs keen attention. YouTube is a treasure trove of inspiration where very detailed tutorials make the job easy. So step up your game this Halloween for it comes only once a year!
Model and make-up: Raisa Naushin
Photo: Sazzad Ibne Sayed
Set design: Eskay by Saimul Karim