The Twelve Most Disfigured Characters in Horror
Besides being utterly ruthless and completely insane, many of the classic horror movie ‘monsters’ have something else in common, too. They are, without a doubt, incredibly and horrifically disfigured. They are nauseatingly ugly almost to the point of being able to use that particular characteristic as an actual weapon. Granted, not every one of these terrifying nightmares is constantly looking the same way. Some, like Seth Brundle and Jason Voorhees are in a constant flux either throughout the course of one movie (or a series) and perpetually get more hideous as it progresses. But anyway you slice it (ha ha) this devious dozen are really, really ugly.
Seth Brundle was just an ordinary scientist working on the prospects of teleportation. But, when he gets caught in his own pods with a common housefly, that’s when the real horror begins. His transition from human to human-fly, is absolutely disgusting, especially when big chunks of him start falling off.
Pinhead is a Cenobite, and the leader of the same, who inhabits a twisted, labyrinthine world called Hell under the watch of the God, Leviathan. Tracing every inch of Pinhead’s face and skull is a fleshy grid, and emblazoned upon every intersection is a metallic pin driven in to the bone. As far as disfigured horror folks go, his certainly seems to be, at some point, the most painful.
A renowned organist and doctor, Phibes and his wife are both thought to have perished in a car accident. However, Phibes survives but with a horrible disfigurement to his face and head. He soon fashions a tubing system that allows him to communicate through a gramophone. Soon, once he discovers his wife was indeed killed, he blames other physician’s incompetency and goes on a vendetta.
Peyton Westlake is a brilliant scientist working on a new synthetic skin for burn victims. But soon, a jealous mob -intent on gaining the secret to Westlake’s formula- destroy his lab, in turn severely burning Westlake’s face and hands. Discovering that the synthetic skin is indeed photo-sensitive, Westlake uses it on himself and takes to the shadows as Darkman in order to serve justice.
Robert Z’Dar plays Matt Cordell, the ‘Maniac Cop’ in question. And if you look up Z’Dar on Google it’s pretty obvious that this cat is a trifle misshapen as it is. So, take the prospect of a monstrous, zombie-like cop (Z’Dar) and make him up with a pretty nasty face disfigurement and give him the desire to kill and, well, you’ve got yourself a pretty cool flick that every horror fan should see at least once.
Duane Bradley arrives in New York City carrying a basket containing his monstrous parasitic half aborted twin, Belial, who is so inhumanly malformed that the few people who know of his existence doubt he can even be considered a person. Thanks to their disgusted father, the two are separated at birth by a team of three doctors allowing Duane to live normally while hoping for the death of the horrific Belial. Both survive and go on a murderous rampage tracking down and killing the physicians.
When you’re a hastily tossed together amalgam of dead body parts, it only makes sense that your outward appearance is doomed to forever be freaky. Throw in the fact that you have the intellect and innocence of a child, yet the brute strength of a nearly superhuman man, and the term ‘monster’ becomes forever attached. Sure, Frankenstein’s monster has been portrayed in many different ways from Karloff to DeNiro, the fact still remains than he is one ugly dude.
The killer Cropsy (from the movie The Burning) is based on an actual myth, but the backstory and resulting disfigurement is all from the flick. Cropsy was a caretaker at Camp Blackfoot, but he was also a pedophile and murderer. One summer, a group of boys intent on pulling a prank chuck a flaming and rotting skull into Cropsy’s cabin. He wakes, freaks, and knicks it into a vat of gas. BOOM! Flaming Cropsy becomes horrendously mutated killer. Hurray for the Horror Movie plan!
In most incarnations of The Phantom, including the long-running Broadway adaptation and that souring pile of shit starring Gerard Butler, The Phantom himself is not portrayed as a disfigured being at all, merely a twisted monster living under the opera house. However, in the far superior 1925 version, he is played to perfection by Lon Chaney and is quite possibly one of the most outright repulsive and frightening monsters of all time.
Believe it or not, Quasimodo Sunday is the Sunday after Easter. Nope, I didn’t know that either. Probably because I’ve never read ‘The Hunchback of Notre Dame’ by Victor Hugo. Anyway, it’s been said that Quasimodo was, perhaps, a real person who was employed at the Notre Dame cathedral during Hugo’s life and became the basis for the story. Either way, he is shown as having a wart-covered face with various other malformities, and, of course, a huge hump on his back.
Whether you subscribe to the original version where Fred Krueger is Power Plant worker and professed child murderer, or to the new story where he worked at Bandham Preschool as a groundskeeper and a denied child molester, the end result is the same: death by fire. Krueger is burned to death by the parents of all the children he either touched or killed, and his horribly disfigured. Robert Englund’s version is a gnarly mish-mash of scars and peeling flesh, whereas Jackie Earle Haley’s portrayal has him looking more like an actual, realistic burn victim. However you prefer, Freddy is a nightmarish creature to be sure.
Even before his initial resurrection from the dead as an unstoppable killing machine, Jason Voorhees was a defected, mutated kid relentlessly picked on by his peers and eventually left to drown in Crystal Lake. As he is first shown, with a burlap sack over his sickening face, Jason is only interested in serving vengeance to those he thinks are responsible for the death of his mother, but soon, and with a new hockey goalie mask forever and permanently adhered to his rotting and disgusting face, Jason becomes, in effect, a zombie who stops at nothing to kill anyone stupid enough to wander his grounds. As his face becomes more maggot-ridden and corpse-like, it becomes apparent that a busted up mask is the least of his worries.