There's a certain undeniable air about the van. Utilitarian, sure, but also scary. Mysterious. Unwelcoming. Yesterday we asked Jalopnik readers to find the most unnerving examples of the genre. They delivered these ten creepy vans.
Welcome back to Answers of the Day — our Jalopnik summer feature where we take the best ten responses from the previous day's Question of the Day and shine it up to show off. It's by you and for you, the Jalopnik readers. Enjoy!
Photo Credit: Picasa
10.) Ford Econoline
Suggested By: Princess Spiegel
Why It's Creepy: Before we delve much deeper into the world of creepy vans, it's important that we're all on the same page. The Ford Econoline can be considered the standard creeper van, and Spiegel tells us why: one or two discrete colors (multicolored vans can appear too happy), a little rust and grime, and windows only on the back doors. Those windows should be covered over by tape, newspaper, or tint to keep prying eyes out. Finally, the front seats should be separated from the back cargo compartment, so that anyone looking in through the front windows has no idea what creepy things are going on in back. Now, let's proceed.
Photo credit: Expedition Portal
9.) Vans with outside security locks
Suggested By: JackTrade
Why It's Creepy: We know vans are creepy, but seeing one of these things on the back doors sends an extra little shiver down the spine. As JackTrade asks, is the lock there to keep bad people out, or good people in?
Photo credit: Industrial Van
8.) Puppies, clowns, and free candy van
Suggested By: $kaycog
Why It's Creepy: Okay folks, shut it down. We're only three vans into our list, and we've got a trifecta of creepy. If the decorations weren't enough, just take a gander at those side doors- if they don't look like the entrance to a horror movie execution room, then you need to reevaluate your creepy threshold. This old-looking Econoline ticks all of the scary boxes, and should be avoided by anyone with a sense of fear.
Photo credit: Jalopnik
7.) Balls Deep Van
Suggested By: Cheeseslap
Why It's Creepy: Excuse me sir, but balls deep in what, exactly? Taking a quick look, this fulfills several of the criteria laid down by the Princess: bad paint, a little rust, blacked-out rear windows and a statement of questionable taste emblazoned along the side of the van. But fear not! The Balls Deep van is apparently, no more. It's been transformed into a psychedelic-painted "Beatnik Blowout," and the streets are safe for kids once again.
Photo credit: LLE
6.) Wizard Mural Van
Suggested By: Smackela
Why It's Creepy: It's a tough call on the wizard mural van. Sometimes, those side panel works of art are pretty sweet. But you know there's a litany of sketchy things happening right behind Merlin. Things that neither you nor I want to know the names of. So keep in mind that whenever Gandalf rolls up, it's time for you to roll out.
Photo credit: Motors and Soles
5.) Pre-Paid Legal Van
Suggested By: cab591
Why It's Creepy: If you've been accused of looking at little kids inappropriately, selling drugs by the river, or sleeping in the back of the Wal-Mart parking lot, you need to call Pre-Paid Legal now. Our crack team of lawyers will arrive at your door in the Lawmobile and get straight to work on your case. Call within the next ten minutes, and we'll even throw in a free swatch of shag carpet from the back of the 'Mobile. You don't want to miss out on this great deal, folks.
Photo credit: Jalopnik
4.) RV Van
Suggested By: CRXPilot
Why It's Creepy: Why isn't it creepy? This thing takes the sketchiness of a van and increases it exponentially with the addition of a camper bed in the back. At least with a regular van, there's plausible deniability. Maybe that rusty, primered out eyesore really does belong to a plumber or delivery company. Now that the back half of it's been replaced with camping accoutrements though, there's no getting around it: that van is dirty. That van is creepy. That van should probably have some sort of restraining order put on it.
Photo credit: RV.net
3.) Ice Cream Van from Hell
Suggested By: beerclinton
Why It's Creepy: Ice cream trucks that are actually vans are already terrifying. There's an additional level of discomfort that comes with buying frozen treats from a dude in the back of an Econoline. But this, this demonic hellspawn is just out of this world. Why anyone would ever consider even approaching it is beyond me. I don't know who that guy is at the very end of the clip, but I do know that he's probably deep in the bowels of hell right now, forced to eat melting ice cream and listen to that song for all eternity. If you're at work, you may want to hold off playing the video: there's some strong language form its cameraman.
Photo credit: Youtube
2.) "Jeepers Creepers" Van
Suggested By: gla2yyz
Why It's Creepy: From this movie we learn a couple of things. Don't ever stop and investigate the business of old, rusty Chevy vans. Don't ever drive through Florida. And finally, don't ever hang out in houses full of cats. I'm never going to sleep soundly at night or look at antique vans the same way ever again.
Photo credit: IMCDB
1.) "Free Candy" Van
Suggested By: Kenny Starr
Why It's Creepy: You know it, you love it, you've seen it on every corner of the internet, it's your favorite creepy van and mine, may I present to you the Free Candy van! Apparently, this internet legend lives in Spokane, Washington and was used for many years as its owner's son's daily driver. Some neighborhood vandals spray painted the van's claim to fame on its side one night, and the rest is history. According to the author of the thread, he's had numerous visits from the neighborhood watch committee, but as of last year has yet to remove the spray paint. I guess we salute him for sticking to his guns, but still want to maintain a safe distance, just in case.
Photo credit: Zoot Patrol