Last week, out on Stewart Sternberg's blog, The House of Sternberg, Stewart reported the following chilling news:
"Most recently the absurdity of extremes in marking literature and film was succinctly rendered by a young woman who complained on a blog about the most recent version of "The Wolfman" (based on the screenplay by Curt Siodmak, penned in 1941). She was irate because the monster was hideous and not the sort of beautiful wolf that she associated with "Twilight". She was also offended because the monster was able to be killed with a single silver bullet. Who ever heard of such a thing??!! And for her, the entire film was nothing more than a rip-off of Stephanie Meyers."
May Lon Chaney, Jr. roll over in his f**cking grave!
What's with these Twilight monkeyskulls? No offense to Stephanie Meyers--wish I had her royalties--but the Twilight series is NOT horror, it's romantic fantasy. Any story, novel movie, comic book etc. that presents vampires or werewolves or what have you as romantic or erotic figures is romance, NOT HORROR. Period.
Horror, REAL, horror is not about how cute or sexy or fashionable supernatural creatures are, but how dangerous, scary, and simply awful they are. That's the catharsis of horror fiction/movies/scary stories told around the fire--damn, that's what it's like to have a zombie eat your guts or have your daughter possessed by a demon or have a vampire tear out your throat and bathe in your blood...death by proxy. No matter how shitty your life is going, you can watch or read horror and say, hey, maybe I lost my job and my girl dumped my sorry ass but at least there's not an alien parasite face-sucking me.
When Universal started putting out horror/monster movies in the early 1930's, it was at the height of the depression and people needed escapism. Frankenstein, Dracula, and the rest took people away from the despair and horror of their daily lives. And when Universal did The Wolfman in 1941, another European war was looming and the Japanese were eating up the Pacific. Again, escapism from REAL horrors lurking just around the corner.
I wish this blogger would set down her candyass Twilight novels long enough to see the forest through the trees.
Am I ranting? Goddamn, yes, I am.
I realize this blogger is just a kid and I shouldn't take what she says very seriously, but it's things like this that really irk horror fans like me. When Universal first made The Wolfman with Lon Chaney, Jr., and then remade it recently with Benicio Del Toro, I'm pretty sure the point wasn't to make a werewolf that was cute and sexy with impeccable fashion sense so all the little pubescent girls in the audience would swoon and say, Oh, Lawrence Talbot is simply dreamy, I wish he'd move to my town and be my crush. No, I'm pretty sure that as much as the wolfman/Talbot was to be pitied, he was also something to be feared because he would EAT you.
And, given the economic woes of this country, I think escapism definitely factors in once again.
Okay, we've straightened out that part.
Now...The Wolfman is a rip-off of Stephanie Myers??? Okay, this really makes my blood boil. I really hate uninformed people and this anonymous blogger--thank God I don't know her name or I'd be forced to produce something unpleasant and leave it burning on her doorstep--is really the tops. Yes, yes, I know, she's just a kid. But things like that are very insulting to guys like me who grew up watching Chaney do his bit and are very intrigued to see what Del Toro can do.
To this uninformed, ignorant, lovestruck little airhead of a blogger, I say: Shame on you, little girl! Shame on you!
To Del Toro I say: I hope your wolfman is perfectly scary and perfectly revolting in every way.
And to Stephanie Meyers: Please, Steph, now that you've taken away the self-respect werewolves and vampires once had--or at least what they had LEFT after Anne Rice and Laurell K. Hamilton--do us old horror fans a favor and please just leave The Frankenstein Monster, The Mummy, and The Creature from the Black Lagoon alone. I've no doubt that you're even now penning a zombie romance that will positively make horny/confused/silly teenage girls positively swoon with desire, but leave the other old monsters alone. All they have now is their respect. Don't take it away from them.
And to Stewart Sternberg: Sorry for stealing your thread, man.