“The Walking Dead” is back on the airwaves and dominating fiercely. I haven’t watched the show consistently since the first season as I’ve never been a fan of zombies. They are slow, boring, cannon-fodder monsters that aren’t scary in my opinion. I think zombies are best used in video games as just villains you can shoot down without a hint of guilt. I dislike zombies so much that I hardly can classify them as monsters, but alas they are the chic monster du jour and have even been “Twilighted”. As Daffy Duck can point out there are way more interesting monsters out there:
Below is a list of a few monsters I’d like to see get some more love…
“Sharknado” (2013) notwithstanding, sharks are scary monsters because they are real. They qualify best as movie monsters because in this case fiction is stranger than truth. In reality sharks like to eat seals not humans, good news for humans, bad news for seals. But in the movies sharks are deadly killing machines that are a force of nature not to be trifled with. Trouble is we don’t get enough shark movies, “Jaws” both created and killed off the genre of “sharksploitation”. If done well I think shark horror movies could make a come back, maybe even a found footage movie? Or perhaps this:
In the 80’s werewolves were the hip monsters thanks to John Landis, “An American Werewolf in London” made horror movies cool and werewolves scary again. Unfortunately there hasn’t been anything since then that has come close to being cool or scary. After ghosts, I think werewolves are some of my favorite movie monsters but less than a handful of movies have done them justice. I know that they were neutered by “Twilight” and I just can’t get excited for the MTV version of “Teen Wolf”, if only because they left out the most important element:
Nobody likes clowns, they are detestable creatures that come from some unknown region of Hell. I wish clowns would be treated like zombies, that would make a cool show. Just droves of clowns roaming the countryside laying waste to whole cities eating humans and spraying seltzer bottles. There have been a handful of scary clowns in movies, but I think somebody needs to create a universal mythology for them as monsters and then we can really get the ball rolling on this crazy genre.
“Pacific Rim” was a great way to bring back kaiju movies and it’s a shame that the movie was considered a flop here in the U.S. I love kaiju and in the right hands can be really scary. “Cloverfield” (2008) did something really different and made huge monsters scary again in a post 9/11 America. Next year “Godzilla” is making a comeback and from what I’ve seen it could be great. Maybe the new “Godzilla” will invigorate the kaiju genre as “Pacific Rim” should have and we’ll get some first rate scares from big monsters again. The concept of huge monsters has always scared me, I have a nightmare that I can still vividly remember from childhood, I was 5 years old at the time and it involved a plant kaiju destroying New York City while my mother and I had to get my sister from ballet practice. I probably shouldn’t have watched “Little Shop of Horrors” at such a young age:
1. Frankenstein’s Monster
I know what you’re thinking, isn’t he just a zombie? NO! You’re a zombie! Sorry…actually he’s a reanimated corpse with a thirst for vengeance. He’s still a great monster that hasn’t been scary since the 30’s. He’s a bit of a joke now (thanks Herman Munster) so it’s hard to take such an old monster trope seriously again. There have been many “Frankenstein” reboots in development so there is hope he may live again, if you can call it that. I guess the real challenge would be to get away from the Monster we know and regularly laugh at (thanks Mel Brooks & Gene Wilder) to a monster that strikes fear into the hearts of mortal men. Only time will tell, but for now we’ll always have Boris:
Agree with my monsters? Let me know!