- Patricia Stover
Top Three Favorite Mystifying Monsters
From Banshees to Zombies and everything in between, supernatural creatures have been the lifeforce for horror stories for centuries. When you go into your favorite bookstore and grab a book from the horror rack, chances are you’ll find some creepy creature to keep you company. So, what is it about supernatural creatures that seem so terribly terrifying? Is it the werewolf’s superhuman strength or razor-sharp claws? Or maybe it’s the shapeshifter’s ability to transform at will. Whatever the case, Horror readers have been devouring books with monsters gracing the covers for generations.
To celebrate, here is a list of my Top Three Favorite Mystifying Monsters:
1. The Nightbreed featured in Clive Barker’s Cabal. (I had to move this one to the top of the list.)
This is book turned film. If you are looking for the 1990 cult classic, you’ll have to search for Nightbreed as the film was renamed to reflect the ground-dwelling creatures Barker created. This is also one of my favorite books/films. And, in my own opinion, Barker will forever be one of the best Horror writers of my time, or any time for that matter. He is definitely not afraid to touch dark places. He shows this when he plays into the psychological aspects of Cabal’s main character and his serial killing psychiatrist. I mean, the story begins in a psychiatrist’s office for goodness sakes.
Not only does Barker make the main character question his own madness, and his psychiatrist, he creates some of the most undeniably wicked monsters of all time.
I think what makes Nightbreed so special is that they are all unique. Each one has their own thing going and they all seem to have this sort of demonic element about them. Now, I was never quite sure if Barker meant for Midian to resemble Hell and the Nightbreed demons, but that was my take on it.
But what makes Barker’s “demons” so different is that they sort of just want to be left alone. They’re out there living their lives in Midian and minding their own business. It isn’t until our MC goes out there to disturb them that they attack, or until the police raid the place that they go on their own killing spree. So, they’re kind of like the good guys, ya know? Just chilling under the ground minding their business, being all creepy and shit. Oh, and I can’t forget the totally rocker 80s vibe that was going on (in the movie) with the leather jacket or the button eyes of the creepy psychiatrist’s killer mask. Classic.
2. The creatures from The Mist
It is no surprise that Stephen King is on this list. He is one of the greatest Horror authors of all time. He’s been creating memorable monsters since I was still in diapers. In fact, I have him to thank for inspiring me to become a Horror writer. Look, I could go on all day as to why Stephen King rules but I’ve kind of gotten off point.
The creatures in The Mist, book and movie alike, are absolutely one of the most terrifying things I’ve ever seen or read about. For those who don’t remember, there are several creatures featured in the book and film adaptation. Also, (spoilers) they are all oversized monstrosities, which poses a big enough threat in itself. And I am not sure which is worse, the twenty foot-long (I’m guessing at the length here) tentacles or the giant creepy crawlies flying overhead. But one thing I do know is they are all hidden inside the mist and THAT is the thing keeping Horror readers up at night.
Imagine waking up to a mist so thick that you can barely see your hand in front of your face. You take one step in…then another. But wait! What was that? You turn toward the ominous clicking sound. But all you can see is the mist. You make a run for it. But your car is nowhere to be seen. You turn in circles, desperately hoping to see the shimmering silver of your sedan.
A giant tentacle wraps around your ankle and yanks you into the unknown. And that folks is the reason why the creatures from The Mist are one of my top three favorite mystifying monsters.
3. The Manitou in Graham Masterson’s The Manitou.
Oh boy, where do I even start with this one. Masterson really got me with the gross out factor in this story. I’ve only read the first book in the series, and it’s been a while so, I had to refresh my memory. But as I recall, it all begins with what doctors believe to be a tumor. Scary enough in itself, right? I mean, who wants to wake up to find a tumor planted on their body. Not I.
Not only is there a tumor, but the damned thing is also squirming. Yup, you heard me right, squirming. Ewe. Not to give too many spoilers away but the tumor soon turns out to be a supernatural creature unlike anything, (at least anything I’ve ever read) you’ve ever read about in your life. Needless to say, this is one tumor the doctor will regret removing for the rest, or what may be left of his life.
Well, that’s a wrap for my top three favorite mystifying monsters. I hope you’ve enjoyed hanging out. Oh, and keep an eye out for your favorite monsters too, and tell us all about them in the comments below. I’d love to hear all about your favorite monsters and what they can do.