Watching a favorite movie from your childhood as an adult can be pretty amusing when you notice things you never would have picked up on back in the day — and Hocus Pocus is no exception.
Upon checking back with the Sanderson Sisters recently — Hocus Pocus is on the watchlist every Halloween because I’m human, after all — I noticed a handful of sexual innuendos and the extent of Thackery Binx’s bad accent (sorry!). But there’s one plot point I never put much thought into until now, and I can’t believe I haven’t before because it’s actually ruthless.
That plot point being that our heroes *literally* leave the bullies to die.
Let’s backtrack for a moment: Jay and Ice aren’t nice guys. They pick on Max, and steal his fly shoes. And you never mess with someone’s fly shoes. BUT that doesn’t mean they deserve to be left in a situation in which they could have the life sucked out of them so that Winifred, Sarah, and Mary can be young and beautiful forever.
No, no, no, but that’s exactly the position that Max — along with his sister Dani, love interest Allison, and Binx — puts the duo in. He arrives at the Sandersons’ hideout to rescue Dani and Binx, and finds Jay and Ice hanging from cages attached to the ceiling. Max succeeds in saving Dani and Binx and as they’re leaving, Jay and Ice LITERALLY ask for help out of their cages, but Max just takes his shoes back from Ice and hits the road.
Max does kick the witches’ Life Potion potion over, but some of it is salvageable. And Jay and Ice do survive, because the sisters decide to try and use the last of their potion on Dani. But Max didn’t know that would be the case when he left. Who’s to say what the witches are truly capable of? Who’s to say that they wouldn’t have made Jay and Ice their next victims, via Life Potion or otherwise? You certainly can’t rule any of that out of the realm of possibility, given the Sandersons’ track record.
Now, I’m not exactly sticking up for the bullies because, hello, they’re bullies.
And Ice’s haircut alone is enough to make me despise him. That said, stealing shoes should not punishable by (potential) magical death.
So what should our heroes have done? Well, it’s pretty obvious, but let’s look to another magical flick as an example. This particular scene reminded me of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2, when Draco, Blaise, and Goyle attack Harry, Ron, and Hermione in the Room of Requirement. Goyle eventually sets the room on fire (and dies as a result).
Harry, Ron, and Hermione could’ve left Draco and Blaise to fend for themselves. Hell, the trio of Slytherins attacked first and Draco, in particular, had done much worse than that. (Signing up for #TEAMVOLDEMORT seems incomparable to, IDK, stealing shoes.)
But, Harry and Co. didn’t do that. They saved Draco and Blaise — and Max, Dani, Allison, and Binx should’ve done the same for their antagonists, IMHO.