Who will take over as most oversaturated character? Is it the season of the witch? Could pirates sail off with the prize? We charted their courses through pop-cultural history.
When Pirates of the Caribbean became a hit in 2003, it broke a curse that's plagued swashbucklers since Errol Flynn's The Sea Hawk in 1940. Soon after, shirtless vampires reigned, only to jump the shark a few years later. With Starz' Black Sails and NBC's Crossbones on the horizon, we wonder: Are pirates the new bloodsuckers? Has American Horror Story: Coven rekindled our love of witch kitsch? And can either unseat those hard-to-kill undead?
1985: George A. Romero wraps his original Trilogy of the Dead with Day of the Dead.
1994: Italy's Cemetery Man is DOA Stateside.
2002: 28 Days Later makes over $80 million worldwide.
2004: Critics love horror parody Shaun of the Dead.
2010: AMC's The Walking Dead rises.
2013: World War Z is an unexpected box-office hit.
1987: The Witches of Eastwick conjures comedy gold.
1996: Cult-classic-to-be The Craft inspires a generation of sexy witch costumes.
2001: Harry Potter launches the highest-grossing movie franchise ever.
2005: Bewitched, the movie, fails to charm.
2009: ABC's Eastwick stars . . . we can't remember.
2013: American Horror Story: Coven cements Ryan Murphy's status as king of camp.
1986: The curse claims Polanski's Pirates.
1991: Dustin Hoffman captains the cast of Hook.
1995: Rom-com disaster Cutthroat Island.
2003: Pirates of the Caribbean.
2007: Mark Burnett's Pirate Master sinks.
2014: John Malkovich gets a beard for Crossbones.
Executive producer Michael Bay gets all historical with Black Sails.