Our editor-in-chief Nate Yapp is proud to have contributed to the new book Hidden Horror: A Celebration of 101 Underrated and Overlooked Fright Flicks, edited by Aaron Christensen. Another contributors include Anthony Timpone, B.J. Colangelo, Dave Alexander, Classic-Horror.com's own Robert C. Ring and John W. Bowen. Pick up a copy today from Amazon.com!

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Shiverin' 6: Meet the Sawyers

Shiverin' 6 logo

Texas Chainsaw Massacre Month. Greetings and welcome to another installment of Classic-Horror.com's Shiverin' 6. In sticking with our month-long celebration of The Texas Chainsaw Massacre series, we've decided to take a look at six members of the cannibalistic Sawyer clan. Demented, depraved and downright bizarre these characters inspired over the top performances from the actors cast to play them, and also provided the audience with many chill inducing moments thanks to their psychotic behavior. Now, in order of their appearance in the series, let's meet the family.

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Texas Chainsaw Massacre Month (October 2010)

Leatherface in The Texas Chain Saw Massacre (1974)

It began, legend says, at Christmas time. Tobe Hooper, a film director whose only feature credit had been a hippie drama called Eggshells, was standing in a Montgomery Ward, trapped by the bustle of last-minute shoppers. As he contemplated how to get through the mass of consumerism, he found violent inspiration in a display of chainsaws. Thankfully, he didn't act on his carnage-filled fantasy of bloody crowd control. Instead, he channeled the idea into his second feature, a low-budget horror flick about a quintet of young people who are beset by a family of cannibal hicks in the sweltering Texas summer. Although produced with working titles such as Headcheese and Leatherface, it was released in 1974 with the only name it would ever need: The Texas Chain Saw Massacre. This brutal cacophony of terror would go on to spawn three direct sequels, documentaries, a video game, several comic books, an official fan club, and countless pieces of collectible merchandise. Its imitators are innumerable. In 2003, New Line Cinema and Platinum Dunes released a remake which spawned its own prequel, merchandise, and comic books.

Cold Reads: The Turn of the Screw by Henry James

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Spooky children have always been favorite stock characters of the horror genre. Starting as early as The Village of the Damned, blossoming in The Exorcist and The Omen, and bringing us to times as recent as the ones that witnessed Orphan, evil-natured children have always sparked our imagination and our worse parental fears. Henry James' novella The Turn of the Screw presents this now cliché story trope in a setting that may or may not be inhabited by the damned, creating an atmosphere of dread and terror. Although at times a bit of a tough read, The Turn of the Screw remains an icon of psychological horror in literature. (read more...)

The Terrophile: Love Shack of the Evil Dead (Fanvid)

Evil Dead poster

Sometimes when I'm coming up with my fanvids, I think of the movie or television series I want to work with, and then come up with a song. Sometimes I like of a song and try to find a fandom to vid it to. However, with my latest creation, the song and source came at the same time in a burst of inspiration: The B-52's "Love Shack" paired with The Evil Dead and Evil Dead II. In hindsight, it's an obvious pairing. However, the actual editing process was less obvious. From start to finish, this video was a year and a half in the making. I hope you enjoy it.

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Cold Reads: Yours Truly, Jack the Ripper by Robert Bloch

Yours Truly Jack the Ripper and Other Tales by Robert Bloch

More so than perhaps any other serial killer in history, Jack the Ripper has been molded into a figure of almost mythical proportions over the years since his gruesome crime spree. This may be because he was never apprehended by the law and, most importantly, that he was never given a human face for the public to identify him with. This has distorted an already warped soul into something greater, a demonic creature whose existence still remains a mystery. Robert Bloch, a literary mastermind who knows how to craft a fine psychopath, offers up his own serving of Red Jack on a bloody platter.(read more...)

Cold Reads: Afterward by Edith Wharton

The Ghost Stories of Edith Wharton

For those of you dedicated deadites who have been reading these weekly reviews, you have perhaps taken notice of an ongoing, vital factor of horror fiction that I have mentioned several times now. I am referring to that slow build up of dread and foreboding that writers use so potently in their stories. It is my belief that this is where the true terror and tension of weird fiction exists and, when in the manipulative, crafty hands of a talented scribe, it can be used to torment the reader's mind with a sense of perfect horror that is not easily forgotten. In "Afterward", a ghost story almost like no other, Edith Wharton provides us literary masochists with a great, spooky high.(read more...)

Cold Reads: Conjure Wife by Fritz Leiber

Conjure Wife by Fritz Leiber

One of the best things about writing literature reviews for Classic-Horror.com is getting the chance to expose readers to writers who may have previously gone undetected on the horror fan radar. Fritz Leiber is just such a scribe that many will most likely admit to having never heard of. Getting his start in those lovely pulp magazines of the 1930s and 40s, Leiber was a talent whose unique emphasis on supernatural horror occurring in modern society was considered revolutionary in its approach. If you go in expecting to hear of morbid gents digging around in eldritch tombs or fearless heroes slaying monsters in Gothic castles, you may find yourself pleasantly surprised (and frightened) by Leiber’s prospect of evil lurking right next door. This idea is apparent in one of Leiber’s greatest works, Conjure Wife, a tale of the hazy line that bridges the world of reality and the realms of darkness beyond. (read more...)

Cold Reads: The Masque of the Red Death by Edgar Allan Poe

Masque of the Red Death by Edgar Allan Poe

Cold Reads celebrates Writer of the Month! Throughout August, we will be studying the works of Edgar Allan Poe and celebrating his massive contributions to the horror genre.

Perfect in every possible way, Edgar Allan Poe's "The Masque of the Red Death" remains to this reviewer a tour de force of horror and literature. In some ways it exceeds "The Tell-Tale Heart" in its greatness and beauty, making it the perfect tribute to end this month of appreciations to a master.

The hideous Red Death may be ravaging the land, but this mere trifle does not disturb Prince Prospero in the least. Gathering his closest of friends in his secure abbey, the prince holds a magnificent costumed ball to alleviate the minds of his guests from the bothersome reaper who knocks at the door. But as the music swells and the great ebony clock rings out its eerie chimes, a mysterious guest makes himself present amongst the crowd...(read more...)

The Terrorphile: Corman, Price, and Poe -- A Video Tribute

Fall of the House of Usher poster

I grew up on two kinds of horror movies: Universal creature features and Roger Corman's Edgar Allan Poe films. I have very specific memories of watching Vincent Price going mad in Pit and the Pendulum and cheering on the magic duel in The Raven. These are formative experiences in my life as a film aficionado, so when Jose Cruz decided to devote a month of his Cold Reads column to celebrating Poe's short stories, I felt it was the right time to pay tribute to the cinematic triumvirate of Corman, Price, and Poe. 

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Cold Reads: The Pit and the Pendulum by Edgar Allan Poe

Pit and the Pendulum by Edgar Allan Poe

Cold Reads celebrates Writer of the Month! Throughout August, we will be studying the works of Edgar Allan Poe and celebrating his massive contributions to the horror genre.

Well, I didn't expect a kind of Spanish Inquisition! *Diabolical music* No one expects the Spanish Inquisition! This week's creepy classic is Poe's immortal "The Pit and the Pendulum," a devilish descent into the tortures of the Inquisition minus the soft pillows and comfy chair of Monty Python's hilarious skit. Poe drenches his short tale in a palpable sordidness that will instill a bad taste in the reader's mouth and a tangible shiver in the skin.(read more...)

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