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Gilles Garnier and Peter Stubbe – Real-Life Werewolves

Gilles Garnier and Peter Stubbe – Real-Life Werewolves

There is an old superstition that any child born on Christmas Day is cursed since their birth detracts from the full attention due to the observance of the birth of Christ. They are afflicted with lycanthropy unless they lead a life of piousness in thought, word, and deed.

Though the birth dates of Gilles Garnier and Peter Stumpp are unknown, they led deviant lives and committed acts of murder and cannibalism that many attribute to their condition as ferocious shapeshifters: werewolves.

Gilles Garnier

Gilles Garnier, “The Werewolf of Dole”, was a hermit who lived a solitary existence in a forest hovel in the French village of Dole in the sixteenth century. He married a woman named Apoline and had several children but was unable to provide for his family. Possibly cracking under that pressure, he stalked and killed several children, allegedly in the guise of a wolf-man.

Real Life Werewolves-GillesGarnier-01 / Fair use doctrine.

Gilles Garnier, The Werewolf of Dole

His first victim, in October of 1572, was a 10-year-old girl. He strangled her, dragged her into the woods, and devoured flesh from her thighs and arms. He was said to have brought some of the flesh home for his wife to cook.

About a week later, several peasants walking by a meadow heard frightened screams and bestial snarling. They found a young girl being attacked by what some of them said was a wolf but others saw Gilles Garnier. The thing fled on four legs and the girl was saved but later succumbed to her fatal injuries.

His next victim was a 10-year-old boy, on November first. He strangled the boy and ate flesh from his limbs and torso. He ripped one of the boy’s legs off and again brought the meat home to his wife.

A week after that he abducted and strangled a 12-year-old boy and would have eaten his flesh but heard people approaching and fled.

In January of 1573, he attacked another child whose screams drew people to them. Garnier fled but was identified and tracked down. He and his wife were arrested and tortured until Garnier confessed to being a werewolf. He said the Devil had given him a magic ointment that transformed him into a werewolf. His wife confessed to helping him in his crimes. They were both burned at the stake on January 18th, 1573.

Peter Stubbe

Peter Stubbe, “The Werewolf of Bedburg”, had a higher body count than Gilles Garnier and was much more depraved.

Real Life Werewolves-Peter Stumpp/Peter Stubbe - exemplore / Fair use doctrine.

Peter Stubbe, The Werewolf of Bedburg

He was born in 1525 and said to have practiced “wicked arts” from the age of 12. He was a widower with a farm in Epprath, Germany, in the 1580s when his terror spree began. He started with his own family, sexually assaulting his daughter Sybil and having a child with her, before progressing to murder. Though more specifics are known about Gilles Garnier’s crimes, the details that are available about Peter Stubbe’s crimes are horrifying. He murdered and, in some cases, cannibalized 14 people. Two of his victims were pregnant women; after he killed them he was said to have ripped the fetuses from their bodies and eaten them. The majority of his victims were young children, including the child he fathered with Sybil. He lured the boy into the woods, bashed his skull open with a rock and ate his brains. He raped most of his female victims, and his lust was so rampant he claimed to have been visited by a succubus.

The townspeople wanted to find the beast that was savaging their neighbors. They used dogs to track the wolf they thought was responsible. Once they had the animal cornered, witnesses claimed it turned into Peter Stubbe and got away from them. They went to his house, arrested him, and tortured him on the rack until he confessed. He admitted all his crimes, saying that he wore a wolf pelt, given to him by the devil, that turned him into a beast.

His fate was as grisly as that of his many victims. On October 31st, 1589, he was placed on a wheel where his arms and legs were broken. Red hot pincers were used to tear off his flesh. After the torture, he was executed by beheading.
Real Life Werewolves-Peter Stubbe or Stumpp-Horrorpedia / Fair use doctrine.


Posted by Alan Smithee in MONSTERS AND CREATURES, MYTHS AND LEGENDS, SLASHERS AND BAD HUMANS, WEREWOLVES, 0 comments
THE DARK SIDE OF CHRISTMAS

THE DARK SIDE OF CHRISTMAS

With Christmas upon us, we venture through the veritable treasure trove of dark stories of yuletide fair. Here is a short list of 9 Christmas tales and traditions used originally to promote the darker (and in some cases oddly comical) side of the holiday period. Whilst some are purely laughable by today’s standards, others are still used to scare children into being good all around the world.
Flashing colored Christmas lights

1. KRAMPUS:

Krampus / Fair use doctrine.The most obvious on the list and easiest to recognize, KRAMPUS has gained a notoriety with horror fans through various films in recent years.
KRAMPUS is a Christmas character from Austria, who on KRAMPUS Night (December 5th) each year appears to scare and maim. Some say he is Santa Claus’ evil twin brother and, like his brother, has a duty each year to perform. Unlike his kindly brother who delivers gifts to good girls and boys, KRAMPUS has the opposite job and will beat and punish all of the naughty children.
Flashing colored Christmas lights

2. CAGANER:

The Shitter / Fair use doctrine.This odd little custom is used in Spain, Portugal, and Italy.
As usual, a nativity is set up and decorated with the expected characters on display – Jesus, Mary, Joseph, three wise men and perhaps a shepherd. However, in these three countries, you may also add a character known as CAGANER.
CAGANER is literally translated as ‘the crapper’ or ‘the shitter’, and his figurine (which traditionally depicts a man, pooping with his pants around his knees and with a pile of poop at his heels) is usually placed in the corner of a traditional nativity scene. Children are encouraged to find him, as part of their Christmas ritual. The CAGANER is not a new custom, having been around for a few hundred years. It is a bit of a shitty custom, I know, but I will admit I was intrigued by the concept of a man crapping in my nativity scene.
Flashing colored Christmas lights

3. WITCHES:

Brooms - WitchesIn Norway each year, it is perceived that WITCHES and evil spirits will ascend on the towns in search of brooms to ride on to do their evil bidding on Christmas Eve. To thwart this evil, the Norwegians will hide all brooms on Christmas Eve and fire a warning shot outdoors with a shotgun.
Flashing colored Christmas lights

4. FRAU PERCHTA:

Frau Perchta / Fair use doctrine.Continuing on with our witch folklore, FRAU PERCHTA is another occult Christmas legend from Austria and Germany. It is known that FRAU PERCHTA visits children through the 12 days of Christmas, from December 25th until January 6th. She is seen as both good and bad.
Thought to have descended from an Alpine goddess of nature, FRAU PERCHTA will reward good children.
However, she is very well known for her gruesome punishments for the bad, including one fearful tale of ripping out internal organs and replacing them with garbage.
Flashing colored Christmas lights

5. HANS TRAPP:

Hans Trapp / Fair use doctrine.In certain regions of France, the tales of HANS TRAPP circulate as an anti-Santa.
Dressed like a raggedy scarecrow when he visits, HANS TRAPP was a wealthy man who worshiped Satan and became greedy and evil.
The stories say that HANS TRAPP was about to eat a small boy when he was punished by God and struck by lightning, killing him instantly. However, his dark soul still returns to scare children (looking like a scarecrow) each Christmas, as a reminder that they still have time to be good.
Flashing colored Christmas lights

6. PERE FOUETTARD:

Pere / Fair use doctrine.PERE FOUETTARD was an evil French butcher who many still fear today.
Said to be a ghoul whose name translates as ‘Father Whipper’, PERE FOUETTARD lured children to their deaths whipping and cutting them (primarily by slicing their throats).
A gruesome tale of 3 young boys he led into his butcher’s shop, was the one that cemented his fate as a part of Christmas’ evil side.
It was there that he murdered them, chopped them up and salted the remains.
St. Nicholas came to the boys’ aid and resurrected them, before enslaving PERE FOUETTARD as his dispenser of punishment, by whipping them naturally.
Flashing colored Christmas lights

7. WEREWOLVES:

Werewolf / Fair use doctrine.Yes …I said WEREWOLVES!
According to varied legends, Lycanthropy is very much included as part of some countries Christmas legends.
In The World Encyclopedia of Christmas, Olaus Magnus (a Swedish folklorist) wrote regarding werewolves gathering on Christmas night to “rage with wondrous ferocity against human beings, by attacking their homes and devouring the inhabitants”.
This was supposedly in Prussia, Livonia, and Lithuania.
However, that is not all of the Christmas-werewolf connection.
In modern times, it has since been reduced to merely being born on Christmas Day is cause enough to believe that person will become a werewolf.
It is seen that being born on December 25th is mocking Jesus Christ and so you must be punished.
Sorry to all you December 25th born children, perhaps steer “clear of the moors”?
Flashing colored Christmas lights

8. GRYLA:

Gryla / Fair use doctrine.GRYLA is an Icelandic legend of a woman with 13 sons (known as the YULE LADS) and her cat Jólakötturinn (see story available on this page about the YULE CAT).
In Iceland, it is customary to receive a gift of new clothes to wear on Christmas Eve. Usually, good workers receive clothes as a gift from employers, and children from their parents.
For those children considered naughty, who do not receive new clothes in time for the festive season, GRYLA comes out from her home and seeks them out -to devour them.
Flashing colored Christmas lights

9. THE YULE LADS:

Like their mother GRYLA, THE YULE LADS were not at all nice to encounter during the holidays. Tales of their numbers vary from five to thirteen, and their antics range from mere pranks to acts of cannibalism.
Either way, these ‘lads’ were to be feared and were usually seen as henchmen for their mother.
In more recent years each of their 13 characters has evolved (since a poem published in 1932 by Jóhannes úr Kötlum) and THE YULE LADS have been seen as more impish, mischievous and less aggressive. In fact with recent toys, stamps and images available they appear more like the seven dwarves than evildoers.

Posted by Michelle MIDI Sayles in FEATURED CONTENT, MONSTERS AND CREATURES, MYTHS AND LEGENDS, SATANIC/DEMONIC, STAFF PICKS, WEREWOLVES, 0 comments
MOVIE REVIEW: Underworld: Blood Wars (2016)

MOVIE REVIEW: Underworld: Blood Wars (2016)

The golden years of horror franchises seem to be over. With Friday the 13th, and Hellraiser both looking to be rebooted, again, in the near future, the lingering bad taste of the Nightmare on Elm Street re-boot and who knows what in store for Halloween, it looks like the days of continuing series are in the past. Meanwhile Underworld: Blood Wars keeps the Vampire/Lycan series quietly churning on.
Knives and guns, vampires and werewolves are back and so is Beckinsale
I can hear the horror purists screaming now, "Underworld isn't horror!!" and that's okay, get it out. Honestly, I could write a whole article about how I agree with you. Maybe I will, but not today. The fact is a lot of people who identify as horror fans do love the Underworld series. A lot of them hate to admit it though. It's like the guilty pleasure of horror. Our own Fuller House without the annoyance of Bob Saget a couple of times a season.
However you feel about Underworld, Underworld: Blood Wars isn't likely to change your opinion. The film opened well enough that a sixth installment has already been approved, yet it was the lowest opening weekend for a film in the series, a sign it might slowly be running out of gas. Hey, it's been almost fifteen years since the original, and even a Prius can only go so far.
Theo James and Charles Dance protect a wounded Kate Beckinsale in Underworld: Blood Wars
For good or bad, Underworld: Blood Wars is basically more of the same. CGI werewolves, stylized fighting with beautiful heroes and villains. Kate Beckinsale is back in the skin tight spandex she has donned for four of the five installments, looking as delicious as ever. Beckinsale plays Selene, former death dealer now renegade vampire, but if you are reading this, I'm sure you already know all about Selene. Returning from the fourth installment, Underworld: Awakening, is Charles Dance (Game of Thrones, Dracula Untold) and Theo James (Divergent). Also in the cast is Laura Pulver (True Blood) and Daisy Head, the daughter of Anthony Head (Buffy the Vampire Slayer). Underworld Blood Wars is also the directorial debut of Anna Forrester.
From watching the trailers, you might be tempted to think the film revolves around the search for Selene's daughter Eve. However, the search never really happens. It's really, as I said above, just more of the same. Werewolves have a leader who unites them against the backstabbing and traitorous vampires. They make attempts to diverge from the standard formula but for the most part it keeps coming back home. There is mention of Eve, as the Lycans try to pry her location from Selene, but it always boils down to wolves against vamps. It does lead up to the sixth installment actually involving the hunt for Eve and a possible last hurrah for Beckinsale as the lead.
Basically if you like the Underworld series, you will probably like Blood Wars. It's not as good as the first installment, but I actually enjoyed it more than the last one. Beckinsale is still as fetching as ever, and I still enjoy watching her. Theo James makes a decent lead to replace the long since gone Scott Steadman, who I still think is actually Scott Stapp of Creed. The acting is decent enough for what it is. If you hate Underworld, this film won't convert you, and neither will Scott Stapp, but that's another story too.
My advice, if you are a hard core Underworld fan, or just need a dose of Beckinsale booty wiggle, rush on out to Underworld: Blood Wars. Anything other than full loyalty to the brand, wait for it to hit DVD or Netflix. I'm giving it five out of ten stars (don't hit me!) for being more of the same, stay the course, but a little extra sexy with Laura Culver.
So, there ya go - 5 out of 10 for Underworld: Blood Wars.
Posted by Allen Alberson in MOVIE REVIEWS, REVIEWS, 0 comments
HALLOWEEN HORRORS: An American Werewolf in London (1981)

HALLOWEEN HORRORS: An American Werewolf in London (1981)

By John Roisland

The Slaughtered Lamb1981 brought to us a film classic, a movie that to this day still tops the charts of being one horror's most loved. I am referring to John Landis' An American Werewolf in London. Landis, who brought us Animal House and The Blues Brothers (two of my favorites), decided to give the horror industry a shot but adding his trademark flavor of humor. Combining these two elements, along with master special effects by genius Rick Baker (Men in Black, Star Wars (1977), Planet of the Apes (2001)) and a great storyline, took him straight to the top of the box office.

David Naughton (Hot Dog the Movie) plays David Kessler who is on a college trip backpacking across Europe with his long time friend Jack Goodman, played by Griffin Dunne (After Hours, My Girl). After being warned to “stick to the road” and “beware the moon” by country folk in the English farm lands, the two find themselves being attacked by a werewolf in the middle of an open field and under the light of the full moon.

 

David wakes some weeks later in a hospital in London, only to find out that Jack died in the attack but that he himself had survived only with scratches. During his brief hospital stay, Jack visits David to inform him that he was killed by the same werewolf that merely scratched David. Jack tells him that he will become a werewolf, too. David dismisses the visit and is released from the hospital to stay with Nurse Alex Price, played by Jenny Agutter (Captain America: The Winter Soldier, Logan's Run), who caught his eye at the hospital. While staying with her, David goes through changes, both physically and mentally. He thinks he's going mad and is sure that he is becoming like the monster that attacked him. The full moon is making him crazy, and he wakes naked in strange parts of the city with while David has no recollection of the night before. Later he learns of people who had been slaughtered and torn to pieces during the night on that night's evening news.

David is sure he's gone mad as he is again visited by his deceased friend Jack, now accompanied by the people that David has killed. They all warn him of the full moon and that he must take his life before hand or many others will be murdered by his hands.

On the night of the full moon, David as he transforms into the wild beast and sets out to hunt. His new-found love and flat mate is worried sick about him as she now believes in his obsession with and fear of becoming a monster and hurting people. Desperate, she notifies the police who are now on the look out for him.

David

The ending of the movie is filmed in busy Piccadilly Square and it is INCREDIBLE! From car crashes to cops getting their heads bitten off by the large werewolf... well, it's pretty fucking awesome! Since the movie has been out for 34 years, yeah, I'm going to drop a spoiler!

Spoiler Alert
David in werewolf form is now trapped at the end of an alley with no escape. Completely surrounded by cops with guns drawn. His new love runs through the line of officers and down the alley after David. She slows as she approaches the large beast, stares him softly in the eyes, and say “David”, the beast’s eyes,relax for a moment, and at that moment he tries lunging to attack her. Instantly a storm of gunfire is let out on the beast. Alex sees this, cries, and the camera pans down to the now dead, bullet-ridden body of David.
Music cues, and credits roll!

If, by chance, you have never seen this work of art, you need to... after I kick you in the throat! This film was — and, in my opinion, is STILL — ahead of its time! The work that Rick Baker alone did on this film has been tried by many others, and have all failed! The transformation scene is second to NONE!!

This is not my favorite horror film, but it is close. It is, however, one of my top choices even though it’s neither scary nor spooky, to watch during the 31 Days of Horror.

Posted by John Roisland in MOVIE REVIEWS, REVIEWS, 0 comments
Welcome Back Boo-Berry!

Welcome Back Boo-Berry!

By Dixielord

BooBerry

Yeah, it's that time of the year when horror fans and cereal fans unite to welcome back the Monster cereals. Many of us grew up with Boo-Berry, Count Chocula, or Franken Berry part of our breakfast ritual. But, wait, maybe some of you reading this have been living under a giant boulder for the last 40 years or so and have never heard of monster cereal. The monster cereals collectively refer to a group of cereals first created way back in 1971 by General Mills. The cereals all had a monster theme featuring a somewhat friendlier version of well known cinematic monsters.

The first two cereals released back in 1971 were Count Chocula and Franken Berry. Count Cholcula featured a chocolate loving vampire named Count Chocula, whose catchphrase was, “I want to eat your cereal”. The cereal was chocolate flavored frosted bites with chocolate flavored marshmallows. The Count was voiced on television commercials by Larry Kenny impersonating Bela Lugosi as Dracula. Kenney is also known for being the voice of Sonny the Cuckoo Bird (He's Cuckoo for Coco Puffs!) and Lion-O from the classic Thundercats cartoon. As a trivia note, Larry is also the father of Kerri Kenney-Silver, who portrayed Deputy Trudy Weigel on Reno 911.

Also debuting in 1971 was Franken Berry, based on the Frankenstein Monster from Universal Pictures. The monster represents a more kid friendly and pink version of Karloff's monster. On commercials, Franken Berry was voiced by Bob McFadden impersonating Boris Karloff. The cereal itself was a strawberry flavored frosted cereal with strawberry flavored marshmallows. McFadden had a long career of voice acting before he sadly passed away on January 7, 2000.

Then, in 1972, the two monsters were joined by Boo-Berry, the friendliest ghost since Casper. Boo-Berry was a blueberry loving ghost who bore a resemblance to horror icon Peter Lorre. Boo-Berry cereal is a blueberry flavored cereal with marshmallows. It is believed to be the first blueberry flavored cereal ever produced. Boo-Berry was voiced in television commercials by Paul Frees. Frees did Boo-Berry's voice in the style of his lookalike Peter Lorre.

Outside of the monster cereal gig, Frees had an interesting career in voice acting. He provided the voice of Boris Badenov in the popular Rocky and Bullwinkle cartoons. He also provided English dubbing for the legendary Toshiro Mifune in the film Midway. Frees also dubbed Tony Curtis in Some Like it Hot (his female voice), and Humphrey Bogart in The Harder They Fall. Bogart was suffering from throat cancer and had to be redubbed to be heard. Off screen, Frees also provided may voices for the attractions as Disney theme parks such as Pirates of the Caribbean and The Haunted Mansion.

monster cereal

Everyone remembers the original three monsters (well maybe not that guy under the boulder), but not so many remember the fourth monster. “What? There was another monster cereal?” Well yes, actually two more. In 1974, buoyed by the popularity of Boo-Berry, Franken Berry, and Count Cocula, General Mills added Fruit Brute to the pack. Fruit Brute's mascot was a child friendly version of a werewolf. Fruit Brute was a mixture of fruit flavored corn cereal, and lime flavored marshmallows. Yes, lime flavored marshmallows. Honestly, I'm not sure how I feel about this. Lime belongs in mixed drinks, not kid cereals. Kids may have felt the same way as Fruit Brute was the first of the monster line to be discontinued in 1982. It was briefly reintroduced in 2013 for a Halloween special, but is not available now. Original boxes of Fruit Brute cereal are considered collectibles.

General Mills tried again in 1987, introducing Fruity Yummy Mummy. Yummy Mummy was basically a reintroduction of Fruit Brute cereal with vanilla marshmallows instead of lime and an Egyptian mummy as the mascot. Sadly for fans of the Egyptian undead, Yummy Mummy soon went the way of Fruit Brute and was discontinued in 1992. It, along with Fruit Brute, received a short curtain call in 2013, but, alas, it is no longer available.

Over the years since their introduction, they have faced some controversy but they have survived. It kind of makes sense that parents might complain about a kids cereal based on movie monsters. However, the controversies were stranger than you might imagine. Apparently the original run of Franken Berry had a food coloring that wasn't digestible by the human body. The dye was harmless, but passing though a kid's intestine had the unfortunate side effect of causing the stool to turn bright pink. It looked a little too much like the kids were passing blood for the comfort of parents. The dye was quickly replaced.

To add to the controversy, it's possible this whole event was just an urban legend. The Internet is mixed on whether this really happened or not. It's wide spread enough that Stephen King referenced it in his book Cujo and its movie adaptation. If you remember your parents freaking out, or perhaps a rushed visit to the Emergency Room after a diet of Franken Berry back in the early 70s, please let me know. It would be nice to confirm it.

The Count had a bit of controversy himself. It wasn't, as far as we know stool-related, although there's no proof it doesn't turn your stool brown. Instead, there were concerns about the sugar content of the cereal. Parents, under the misguided belief that health was more important than sugary fun, complained. Thus, Count Chocula was briefly pulled and the caloric content was slightly reduced.

Through all this, Boo-Berry has remained pretty much controversy free. While supposedly eating too much Boo-Berry, or any berry cereal can discolor your poo, it has never caused hysteria. Seeing blue or green in the toilet apparently isn't quite as fright inducing as red or pink.

The three originals - Boo-Berry, Count Chocula, and Franken Berry - are still going strong. They are still produced and sold though only during the Halloween season. They might be a bit harder to find, but they are available. The boxes have been redesigned with new artwork, but the three monsters are still out there haunting our breakfasts.

So go out while the season is right, and grab yourself a box or a dozen. Whatever your favorite, Boo-Berry, Count Chocula, or Franken Berry, they are available now. Enjoy the hell out of them because once Halloween is gone, so are the monster cereals. And while we enjoy our monster cereal and the Halloween season, let's all have a moment of silence for those monsters no longer with us. Fruit Brute and Yummy Mummy, you are gone but not forgotten. Okay, maybe outside of us horror nerds, you are forgotten, but hopefully you will make another Halloween appearance in the future.

Lastly, I'd like to give a shout out to my friend Stevie, who is no longer with us but truly will never be forgotten, and he loved his monster cereal. RIP my friend.

Posted by Allen Alberson in FOOD AND DRINK, IN THE SPOTLIGHT, PRODUCT REVIEWS, REVIEWS, 0 comments