[[quoteright:220:http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/220px-dark_night_of_the_scarecrow_6237.jpg]]

Directed by veteran novelist Frank De Felitta from a script by J. D. Feigelson, ''Dark Night of the Scarecrow'' is a suspense/horror 1981 made-for-television film airing on {{CBS}}. According to Editor Aaron Crowell Managing of [=HorrorHound=] Magazine, the movie was the first feature length horror film with a scarecrow as its centerpiece, with many having copied this image in the superseding years, giving Feigelson credit as the entire “killer scarecrow” genre.

The plot concerns Bubba, a mentally handicapped man being unjustly accused of attacking a young girl. Disguised as a scarecrow, he hides in a cornfield only to be hunted down and shot. Immediately afterward, it's revealed that he saved the girl from a vicious dog attack, so the members of the search posse cover up their crime and successfully beat the rap for murdering poor Bubba. Unfortunately for them, someone's not too happy about their KarmaHoudini status, and one by one the men are killed off in grisly accidents, the only common element being a mysterious scarecrow that suddenly appears in each man's field...
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!!Tropes in the film:

* AssholeVictims
* ChildrenAreInnocent: Marylee. Though this is subverted in the beginning when she sneaks into a neighbor's yard against Bubba's pleas because she wanted to look at the fancy fountain inside, only to be attacked by a vicious dog.
* DirtyOldMan: Otis Hazelrig.
* [[spoiler: GhostStory]]
* HarmfulToMinors: It is blatantly implied that Otis Hazelrig is a child molester and the reason he hates Bubba so much is because he makes it difficult to get to Marylee. Mrs. Ritter sees right through him.
* LaserGuidedKarma
* {{Manchild}}: Bubba.
* MamaBear: Mrs. Ritter.
* MyGodWhatHaveIDone: Otis and his little lynch mob have this reaction when they learn Bubba actually saved Marylee's life. Not because they feel bad for having killed an innocent man, but because they have to figure out how to cover their tracks.
* NothingIsScarier: The film's gorier moments utilize this trope so the viewers can use their imagination.
* OddFriendship: Bubba and Marylee, though not quite as odd since Bubba has the mentality of a child. Later, Marylee seems to have one with Bubba's mother after his death.
* OnlySaneMan: The district attorney.
* RealAfterAll: The film leaves it somewhat ambiguous as to whether or not Bubba's ghost is taking revenge on Otis and his gang up until the very end. Turns out this time, Bubba ''did'' do it.
* ScaryScarecrows: A scarecrow is always placed on the fields of the next victim.
* ShovelStrike: When Otis's last friend freaks out and is ready to turn himself in, Otis soothes him -- and then brains him with a shovel from behind.
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