By Jenni Miller
Scientists and psychologists have long debated the nature vs. nurture theory. Are we the way we are because of our genes, our IQ, our parents, the toxins in our tap water? Certainly, some diseases like cancer, diabetes, alcoholism, and depression can be passed on genetically, but it's up for grabs how much environment plays into fully developing something that was lurking in one's gene pool.
But really, all that BS doesn't matter in the end when it comes to these families who share an interest in human flesh, chainsaws, torture, rape, and occasionally each other, if you know what I mean. All that matters is getting the hell away from them as fast as you can.
It's really hard to say which of these disgusting groups of related and/or inbred freaks is the worst, so this is in no particular order. Enjoy!
1. The Texas Chainsaw Massacre
The real-life familial yearnings of murderer, cannibal, and grave-robber Ed Gein inspired many film villains, but few movies boasted an entire family of murderers and cannibals until Tobe Hooper's 1974 The Texas Chain Saw Massacre. This incredibly influential slasher featured the antics of a small town Texas family lead by a character later known as Cook or Drayton Sawyer, who seems to be a kooky, harmless gas station owner at first, but later shows up just how he earned his nicknamed. The Hitchhiker, who is either Drayton's son or brother, is a totally batsh*t crazy dude armed with a straight razor who terrorizes the folks who pick him up off the side of the road, and Leatherface is his brother, who earned his nickname from his love of wearing masks made of human skin. He is the one with the chainsaw. There's also a catatonic grandfather and Granny's corpse in the attic. Later remakes and sequels add more twisted branches to the family tree, including the remarkable Chop Top (played by Bill Mosely), a war vet who enjoys nothing more than scratching the visible metal plate in his head with a clothes hanger.
2. The Firefly family in House of 1,000 Corpses and The Devil's Rejects
Taking his cues from TCM, these two films are also about a family of backwoods Texans who enjoy murder, rape, and mayhem, although the Fireflys have a sexier vibe thanks to old-school scream queen Karen Black, who plays Mother Firefly, and Sheri Moon Zombie as cackling sexpot Baby Firefly. Whereas House has more of a funhouse-gone-wrong feeling, The Devil's Rejects has some pretty grotesque scenes as Baby, Otis (Bill Mosely!), and another character, whose identity would be a spoiler, go on the run after a confrontation with the police back at home goes bad.
Read the rest at Cinematical!