“There’s Nothing Funny About a Clown in the Moonlight”


The above quote from Lon Chaney was used in the preface of the essay Cotton Candy Autopsy: Deconstructing Psycho-Killer Clowns by Mark Dery which can be found in his book The Pyrotechnic Insanitarium. It’s an interesting (if pretentious) read which makes some debatable points, but nicely illustrates the shift in American consciousness regarding our perceptions of clowns. Dery destroys his own thesis of clown phobia as both a “hysterical reaction” to pedophilia and a millennial exercise in scapegoating by pointing out that The Joker from the Batman comics is the quintessential psycho-killer clown. The Joker of course made his first appearance in 1940 in Batman number one, and was based on the character Conrad Veidt played in the 1920s silent gothic horror film The Man Who Laughs.

That movie was based on the Victor Hugo novel of the same name, which I believe was written in the 1860s.  So the scary clown image is one that has been part of the Western psyche for over a hundred years and is not, as Dery argues, a post-modern construct of American society.

However, his essay does hint at the madness of those who would become clowns, and more importantly the history of The Fool who was often seen as intertwined with Death, as a source of both fear and loathing. The dark history of clowns makes those who would become them seem mad indeed, which brings us to our modern cult of clowns, Juggalos.

As I’ve said before, I don’t happen to believe Juggalos are any more prone to violence than any other sub-culture in which drug use is not only acceptable but encouraged. However I along with other bloggers who cover crime see that Juggalos tend to be involved in crimes which are unusually depraved and fit nicely within the modern mythology of clowns being degenerates in the literal sense.

Most recently a young Juggalo by the name of Orion Kent Mitchell Stoltman made the news when he was found to be responsible for the torturing and killing of the pet goats of the Linell family of Utah. On the night of October 31st, he and two juveniles stole the 12 inch high pygmy goats and took them to a nearby elementary school parking lot where they slowly and gleefully hacked and sawed away at the animals necks to decapitate them. The goats were clearly in agony for some time because a man who lived nearby thought he heard children crying 2:00am, went to investigate and saw the trio in the midst of the attack. Unless the man lived within a few feet of the scene this would indicate the attackers were taking their time with the goats rather than killing them swiftly, at least long enough for a man to get out of bed, get dressed and leave his house.

Dreamin’ Demon has the long version of the story and it is disturbing.

Orion Stoltman is just one more Juggalo who has made the crime blogs, but the Juggalo culture itself is full of Orions. Juggalos proudly flaunt their disdain of social norms as all sub-cultures do, but there is in their iconography a sort of beacon for degeneracy, a metaphysical call through the collective unconscious that targets the most inhuman of us. There is no convention or norm we hold dear that Juggalos will accept, whether it is sober living or humane treatment of animals, for the Juggalo believes he or she transcends the laws of America just as the Fool transcended the laws of nature in medieval passion plays. If there is a term to sum up the philosophy of the Juggalos it is this: Secular Antinomianism.

I often use the picture of a woman dressed as a clown holding a gun on posts about Juggalos and I credit the site Underground Juggalo. The woman is a winner of one of their many contests where readers send in their photos. Some of these contests are R-rated and include nudity. They also seemingly include underage girls. Since the author never bothers to post the age viewers are left uncertain as to what they are seeing, but I would be surprised if there were not several pictures on the site that are illegal in this country. Yet there they remain, defiant in the face of the law and morality, a tribute to the debasement of American culture. The Juggalo is the foot soldier of the cultural apocalypse, the modern day Vandal that is already sacking our cities and making sport with our daughters.

When considering the Juggalos I’m inclined to believe Lon Chaney was right. In the light of the moon the corruption of the soul of the clown is revealed. The greasepaint hides not a fondness for laughter or even a secret sadness, but a bitter hatred, an atrophied soul and resolute desire to make the rest of us suffer as those whose madness drives them to the take up the killer clown image suffer. When you are alone or with your loved ones there is nothing funny about a clown in moonlight.

Especially if that clown is a Juggalo.

6 thoughts on ““There’s Nothing Funny About a Clown in the Moonlight”

  1. look all juggalos are not what these dunb ass kids are about i am a juggalo and will be for life those idiots with the goats should not be placed in the same catagorie as juggalos. They are dumb asses tyin to be juggalo this is the same around the world. We are looked at as hoodlums. this is not true! I am a respected member of normal society and so is 99% of juggalos. just cuz these idoits give us a bad name we are scorned upon. The next time some idiot kills someone or somthin do not listen when they say they are juggalo! they are idiots who do not see the image ICP and TWIZTID are sending in reality ICPs messedge is GOD end of story! In the wraith: shangri-la listen to THY UNVEILING if you question what i am sayin these dumb asses do understand the greater picture. A juggalo is about his family (the juggalos). end of story WHOOP WHOOP ninjas

  2. Yo, when I browse pages I just wind up seeing a small part of the site’s post. I don’t understand if it is my web browser(Opera) or not, anyone else dealing with this problem?

  3. Yo I’ve been a juggalette for bout 5 years now.This bullshit is very offensive to me.How dare you catagorize us all into that clique?!?!?!?!?!Like all you “normal” society folks are sane?Whatever!I’ve got mad clown love for my family!WHOOP WHOOP!!!!!add me on Facebook or any other sight

  4. You didn’t read the post, did you? I didn’t say all Juggalos did anything. You want to believe I said that so you can feel oppressed. Grow up.

  5. I think it is the combination of ignorance and mental illness that make Juggalos so dangerous. The rebuttal posts here demonstrate both.

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