Just in time for Valentine's Day we're taking a look at horror and monster movie romances that have gone horribly wrong. This may seem like a downbeat topic, but let's face it, happy endings in horror are few and far between. At the very least we can console ourselves that regardless of how bad things may be, Valentine's Day will go better for most of us than it did for these tragic souls.
Bride of Frankenstein
OK, we've basically got the worst blind date in the history of the world here. Frankenstein's monster (Boris Karloff) is wandering the countryside all bummed and stuff 'cause no one wants him around. Dr. Pretorius (Ernest Thesiger) is all like "I've got the perfect chick for you," and the creature is all like "OK," and Dr. Pretorius is all like "slow down, dude, I have to build her first." Pretty soon old flat top is thinking Pretorius is his BFF, but the creepy doc is just using him to strong arm Henry Frankenstein (Colin Clive) into helping with his latest crime against nature. Once the female creature is made (and, incidentally, sporting a hairdo that could easily house a family of barn owls), the monster splashes on some Aqua Velva and gets ready to make his move. It soon becomes clear, though, that in the hierarchy of the reanimated dead the Bride is the hot cheerleader and the monster is the AV nerd with a retainer, dandruff, and bolts through his neck. In a display of adolescent angst the creature decides that EVERYBODY MUST DIE and pulls a convenient lever that vaporizes the lab (OSHA would have a field day with that). As the building collapses around them, the monster obviously regrets being so forward, and if you listen closely you can hear him sob "I should have just texted her."
Pity poor Larry. Being cuckolded is never fun, but being thrown over for a man with no skin has got to be as humiliating as it gets. How many times have we heard a woman lament about her mate saying "he's a drug crazed bipolar Nazi who likes Uwe Boll films, but at least he's got an epidermis." The same can not be said for Frank, an escapee from hell who has returned to the land of the living with his organs showing and still manages to inspire lust in his brother Larry's wife Julia. Sucks to be Larry. Frank soon decides he does want skin and steals Larry's, leaving his brother a lifeless husk. In fact, it ends badly for just about everyone, but Julia likes the skinless look so much she wears it in the sequel.
The Godzilla Series
I know what you're thinking: When did we ever see Godzilla dating? Well, we've seen the Big G with at least a couple of kids over the course of his 30 film appearances. There was Minilla from the Showa series (1954 - 1975), Godzilla Jr. in the Heisei Series (1984 - 1995) with a revamped version of Minilla showing up for Godzilla: Final Wars, the final entry in the Millennium Series (1999-2004). There was even Godzooky in the old Godzilla cartoon. So where is Mrs. Godzilla? Here are the possibilities:
- She's taking a radioactive dirt nap somewhere. Tragic.
- She's being held somewhere against her will like a secret kaiju research lab, another monster's lair or maybe she's stuck in one of those lines at Home Depot that just never seems to move. Also tragic.
- She's off finding herself and there's no room for hubby or baby in the equation. Hell, I wouldn't be surprised to find the tramp shacked up with Gamera. Again with the tragedy.
Dawn of the Dead (1978)
Most relationships go through their rough patches. Stephen (David Emge) and Francine's (Gaylen Ross) has its trial by fire when they are forced to hole up in a shopping mall to wait out the zombie apocalypse. Kind of makes that fight you and your significant other had over whether to name the cat Spock or Rambo seem petty, doesn't it? Stephen is torn between caring for his pregnant girlfriend and getting all testosteroney with his SWAT team buddies. Francine needs to confide with her girlfriends, but she's the only woman with a pulse for miles around. She turns down his marriage proposal, essentially saying "it's the end of the world, but I still think I can do better." BURN! Stephen gets even by getting killed and rising from the dead. Now she's 98.6 and he's room temperature. It can never work.
Evil Dead/Evil Dead 2
If years of therapy have taught me nothing else, any romance cut short by a chainsaw qualifies as doomed. In the first film a group of teenagers including a young Romeo named Ash (Bruce Campbell) head off to a remote cabin for a weekend of hanky panky, moonshine, and demonic possession. Pretty soon people -- including Ash's girlfriend Linda (Betsy Baker) -- are being possessed by Kandarian demons, but then again maybe its just the moonshine talking. In any case the Ash/Linda relationship begins to break down when several blows to her demonically altered face fail to stop her taunting. Next she's after him with a ceremonial dagger, but ends up skewered on the thing herself. In light of recent events, Ash chooses to err on the side of caution, and dismember Linda's corpse with the aforementioned chainsaw, but he chickens out at the last minute. Linda's a determined gal, though, and she doesn't let death, interment or decapitation by shovel stop her from winning the argument. In the sequel, Linda (now played by Denise Bixler) reclaims her noggin and quite literally drops it into Ash's lap. While some might see this as an attempt at reconciliation, Ash ceases the opportunity to return to plan A (that's the chainsaw) and brings the relationship to a gore soaked close.
An American Werewolf in London
During a brief vacation from his mission to tell the entire world that he's a Pepper (wouldn't you like to be a Pepper too?), David Kessler (David Naughton) gets bitten by a werewolf and winds up in a London hospital. His main caregiver is a nurse named Alex Price (Jenny Agutter), who has traded in the smoking hot outfits she wore in Logan's Run to cater to David's more pedestrian nurse fantasies. In a move that I'm betting is not covered by Blue Cross, Alex invites David to stay with her after he is discharged and much naked frolicking ensues. Unfortunately, when the moon is full David turns into a wolf ("him and a million other guys," to swipe a line from Lou Costello), making moonlit walks on the beach problematic at best. It all ends with a shotgun blast as the transformed David lunges for the Milkbones Alex keeps in her pocket.
Anyone who has ever relocated to accommodate a mate, only to find themselves dumped and alone in a strange city can understand Kong's rage, and perhaps pulling an elevated train from its rails is not an unreasonable response. Regardless of which film incarnation you're talking about, Kong's inter-species affection always ends badly, because let's face it, it's a pretty icky concept. I attribute much of the problem to a breakdown in communication. To Kong, Anne Darrow's (Fay Wray or Naomi Watts) shrieks of terror were obviously misinterpreted as a suggestion that she come back to his place to see his etchings, whatever the hell that means. I say we get the big guy a Myspace page and perhaps an account over at Match.com and find him someone more his type... and height. I hear that critter from Cloverfield is new in the Big Apple.