Pictured: A tender embrace between lovers. So sweet.
There was our simple first age as a species, Cro-Magnon’s who had to limit our minds to whatever scary things we could draw with berry juice on a cave wall. Then we walked upright boldly into an age of movies, an age of horror movies. We created bold new monstrosities to watch in wonder and fear.
And then, with The Shape of Water dawned a new age: an age where people could boldly and openly say they would bang with monsters.
And I’m glad for those people. But life isn’t all about the carnal pleasures. It’s about meaningful relationships. Bonding with someone you love. Stability. So, putting aside your weird fantasies for a second, I implore you to consider this.
What monster would you not only want to be with…but also build a home with?
For the next few weeks, we at Horror Press will be doing some polls around a curated list of horror movie icons to determine who has the makings of a solid life partner. And you, dear readers, get to vote and determine who passes on between the weeks up until the very final article is publish on Valentine’s Day. The name of the game is long term, stable relationship, so, let’s put them to the test and you put your three votes to good use!
But before that…
THE GROUND RULES
If we were to go through all of horror’s great monsters to do this, we’d be here all day. So we’ll have to whittle down our list of possible candidates.
Rule #1: They must be the villain of that film. Self-explanatory.
Rule #2: They must be sapient and consenting. Relationships require communication, trust, and respect, and anything that only has sentience alone cannot give you those three things. This disqualifies any creatures that behave like wild animals, i.e. The Things from The Thing or Aliens from Aliens. Sorry to you nasties out there.
Rule #3: They must be able to do things other than killing/torturing. Anything completely mindless/mechanical in their motives are incapable of being reasoned with, so they’re a no go. This disqualifies the likes of Michael Myers and Pinhead. If they go mindless as the result of a transformation, they’re on the table. If they just do just because it’s fun, that’s a boring person to be around, its effectively the same as someone who has made their hobby their whole personality.
Rule #4: They must be single. This disqualifies the Jack Torrance’s on our list who are in relationships. This also disqualifies Pennywise and The Babadook since they are in a loving relationship (iykyk). Killers in a poly relationship feel like cheating by submitting extra ballots, so they’re also off the table.
I must make a very specific ruling as a Chucky fan, if you have some mechanism by which you split your soul, but only one iteration of you is in the relationship, this does not count as being single. That’s just…you in a relationship with extra steps. So sorry Charles, you’re still taken by Tiffany and vice versa.
Rule #5: They must not be bound to a singular location. Monsters or killers stuck to a particular stomping ground are often too inflexible and too rigid. How would you go on vacation? What if you find a nice apartment at a reasonable rate in another part of town? It’s just not realistic to limit yourself, Jotun from The Ritual.
Now that we’ve got that out of the way, I’ve narrowed our competitors down to 30 horror stars from across all genres. THE LIST IS, IN NO PARTICULAR ORDER:
- Baguul (Sinister)
- The Phantom (Phantom of the Opera)
- The Tall Man (Phantasm Series)
- Freddy Krueger (Nightmare on Elm Street Series)
- Wolf (Alien VS. Predator)
- Herbert West (Re-Animator)
- Audrey II (Little Shop of Horrors)
- Hannibal Lecter (Silence of the Lambs)
- Rose the Hat (Doctor Sleep)
- John Kramer (Saw)
- Angela Baker (Sleepaway Camps 2 & 3)
- Norman Bates (Psycho)
- Annie Wilkes (Misery)
- Sweeney Todd (Sweeney Todd)
- Gabriel (Malignant)
- The Gill Man (The Creature from The Black Lagoon Series)
- Marie (High Tension)
- Roman Bridger (Scream 3)
- Jason Voorhees (Friday the 13th Series)
- Seth Brundle (The Fly)
- Leatherface (Texas Chainsaw Massacre Series)
- Leslie Vernon (Behind The Mask: The Rise of Leslie Vernon)
- Tom Hanninger (My Bloody Valentine Remake)
- Sue Ann (Ma)
- Dracula (Dracula 2000)
And that’s it for Week 1 everybody.
MAY THE BEST MONSTER WIN! Your heart.
VOTING HAS CLOSED! THANKS FOR PARTICIPATING!
Summer Reading: ‘The Ghost’s Grave’ and Gateway Horror
Growing up in the suburbs, most of my summers were spent running around my neighborhood with my childhood best friend. We’d ride our bikes, eat honeysuckle out of our neighbor’s yard, and pretend to be Power Rangers. However, I’d have to find my own fun if my friend wasn’t available. But there’s only so much TV a kid can watch before getting bored, and only so many times I could dress up our elderly family poodle without him getting pissed at me.
One particular summer, I remember reading a book I had picked up from that school year’s scholastic book fair. This book was The Ghost’s Grave by Peg Kehret. It featured Josh, a kid spending the summer at his Aunt’s house in a small mining town where he had no friends (a relatable premise for a little young, bored me). Things get spooky when he discovers a treehouse in the woods, and a one-legged miner’s ghost appears to him, asking the boy to reunite his leg with the rest of his body. Once Josh gets up the courage to dig up the grave, he discovers a box of money buried along with the leg. A conspiracy unravels, and Josh finds that the money was meant for an animal shelter and was stolen by the manager of the town’s bank.
I think the intrigue of the conspiracy was very new and enticing to little Sebastian. As an avid true crime fanatic, I can see the threads of my obsession in The Ghost’s Grave. A decades-old crime solved by an unlikely hero, what could be more captivating for someone who went on to listen to every Buzzfeed Unsolved video ever to be released? The book also sets up the conflict in an easy way for a kid to understand: stealing from cute, defenseless animals is bad.
My memories of reading The Ghost’s Grave are also special because it was an excuse to snuggle with our old poodle. Most days, he slept in the warm sunbeam from our glass front door. I would bring most of the contents of my bed – my comforter, as many blankets as I could find, several pillows, and my favorite stuffed animal – and put them on the tile next to Napoleon to make a little nest to lay in while we hung out together. This was one of the few activities we did together that he tolerated because he was old and crotchety, and I was very annoying.
There is something special about a book you can’t put down, and The Ghost’s Grave is the one that stands out from my childhood. It was probably one of the first horror books I read on my own. I think I appreciated the freedom to read the book at my own pace and imagine what I might do if I had a friendly ghost friend. When I reflect on my younger self, I’m surprised at how much I loved horror books because I was also vehemently afraid of the dark and the concept of monsters in my closet or under my bed. Admittedly, I slept with a nightlight until halfway through high school.
The Ghost’s Grave was undoubtedly a step in turning me into the horror freak I am today. Some other steppingstones for me were R.L. Stine’s Goosebumps, and Neal Shusterman’s Unwind series. As a teenager, some of the first movies I tested my courage with were One Missed Call (yes, it was the shitty American version, and yes, I was still scared by it), Insidious, and whatever Paranormal Activity movie was currently showing at my local theater. As an adult, it’s much harder to find the time to read, and I spend much more time watching horror films than reading. But I envy the summers little Sebastian spent curled up in a nest in a sunbeam.
MEAT the Movie: An Indiegogo Campaign
Filth. Horror. Glamour.
While you might typically associate those trio of words with your favorite drag monsters, they also perfectly encapsulate the upcoming queer-centric horror film by Rising Pulse Productions, MEAT. A blood-soaked whodunit, the film finds a group of queer individuals fighting for their lives against a studded (and studly) masked killer five years after a night of hard partying leaves someone dead and an innocent bystander in prison.
Directed by your friendly neighborhood “Scream Queer” Roger Connors, co-written by Conners and Zach Shildwachter, with cinematography by Mick Kunz, MEAT aims to serve you glitz and gore on a silver platter. The focus here is on true terror and suspense while deliciously draped in a high gloss aesthetic even the most critical of gay men would commend.
It isn’t family-friendly queer storytelling…the team behind MEAT wants you dripping in more ways than one.
If that sounds like your cup of tea, then MEAT needs your help in making your screens explode with visual stimulation and queer representation! Bringing such ambitions to life while looking stunning and fairly compensating the cast and crew isn’t cheap. The film’s producers have formulated a budget to help bring this movie into reality.
Its Indiegogo features a video by the creators, giving you a peek at the film’s package, and includes a tiered list of perks should you choose to contribute – and do make sure to read those perks descriptions for a good chuckle. Queer media often bears the burden of cliché or an obscenely low budget should it circumvent said tropes. MEAT desires to be the brooding and mysterious monster that surpasses expectations and captivates LGBTQ+ audiences and allies alike. The upper echelon of gay canon awaits.
Production is slated to begin in October 2022, so please spread the word about MEAT while the Indiegogo’s still got a heartbeat!