Don't forget to join in on the month long celebration of horror with #ScaryMovieMonthAtDCM
What is it that we love about horror villains? They're such peculiar characters to adore, yet we continuously come back to them crappy sequel after crappy sequel. They're characters that we love to hate and we have no idea why. I'm going to try and discuss why, but I honestly have no clue. This is truly a question for the ages.
It's scientifically proven that watching horror movies is good for your health, but I can guarantee you that this isn't why we watch them. We watch them for the bad guys. The villains. The ones that'll ensure we keep our lights on at night. Why do we love them? Because they're insane. (Oh, wow, I guess I do know why we love them so much) Let's take Leatherface for example. He's a chainsaw wielding maniac who hangs people on metal hooks dangling from the ceiling. Does this have your attention? Of course it does. Why wouldn't it? A man with that many issues raises the attention of everyone. I'm sure I've just turned a few of you off from watching The Texas Chainsaw Massacre films, but I'm also sure that I've made even more of you interested in seeing them, if you haven't already. Why am I so sure? Because we love it. We love every moment of the squeamish, grotesque violence. Human beings are sick creatures, but we embrace the sick. We love the sick and we want to come back to the sick. We're weird.
An iconic villain makes a horror movie what it is. A Nightmare on Elm Street wouldn't be as famous as it is if it were simply about a hobo tapping on people's windows and hiding in their bathtubs. There's no threat in a hobo, unless he's wielding a shotgun (see Hobo with a Shotgun for more info) in which case you better run. They've got to be something we can relate to. Something that we're afraid of. They can be as messed up, unnatural and out of this world as possible, but as soon as they're given an explanation for existence, we're sold. Jason, the villain from the Friday the 13th sequels, is probably the simplest of villains. Ghostface would actually be a better choice for this position, but I don't really want to talk about Ghostface right now. He's too simple for this discussion. Jason is the reason we love the Friday the 13th franchise. They're rubbish movies but we keep coming back because we love to see the new and (occasionally) inventive ways he's going to murder people. They get ridiculous, but we never stop. We love us some slashers. Even when Jason's in space we come back and we just don't care because we love it. Oh and yep, there's actually a movie featuring Jason in space. Deal with it.
Horror is a weird genre, but its one of my favourite genres. I can't pinpoint why. Nobody can. But the villains have a lot to do with it. Iconic villain equals iconic movie. Or iconically bad movie. It really just depends on what planet they're set on.