Terror from Beyond the Daves is pleased to announce the return of The Horror Host Report! Yes, back when this blog was relatively new we set out to do what no one else had…create an all-inclusive weekly update of what the world’s horror hosts (commercial TV, public access, internet) were up to. It proved to be one of our most popular features and both Terror Daves enjoyed working with all the hosts immensely. Through the report, many of the participants also became personal friends and we had nothing but positive experiences with them during its nearly three-year run.
Friday night at Days of the Dead didn’t have quite the after party Russ and I hoped for. That wasn’t shocking since Saturdays tend to be when convention festivities kick off and it certainly wasn’t everyone else’s fault that we were only staying over on Friday. After we ate dinner the convention rooms closed but Days offered activities in the hotel lounge which included a monster burlesque show.
It’s always a pleasure for a Midwesterner like myself to meet up with the incomparable Penny Dreadful and the talented crew of Shilling Shockers! I had driven from my native Chicago to attend this year’s MONSTERBASH convention in Pennsylvania and it provided the perfect halfway point for catching up with New England’s finest. I had just spent the previous weeks watching her wonderful Season Eight (which I urge you to order copies for yourselves by clicking HERE) and wanted to tell them personally what a great job I thought they’d done on it.
When Ghoul A Go-Go frontrunner, Vlad Tepis, was unable to appear at this year’s MONSTERBASH it was Shilling Shocker’s Penny Dreadful to the rescue! The crafty New England witch made a spell-binding replacement, all done last minute. Ghoul A G-Go is a popular show combining monsters, laughs, and dancing! They’re regulars of the premiere Pennsylvania Monster event but the absence of Vlad (which Penny jokingly explained was due to his protest of the DARK SHADOWS remake) created a bit of a dilemma in lieu of their scheduled performance. You see, Vlad is the only member of the trio who actually speaks! (NOTE: Out of respect for the wishes of Ghoul A Go-Go, all photos and video are B&W).
It was great seeing my Horror Hosts friends this past weekend at MONSTERBASH! Count Gore de Vol, Son of Ghoul, Penny Dreadful, and Mr. Lobo are regulars there as well as Chilly Billy whom I met for the first time! Check out these pics…
Not long after the premiere of Tim Burton’s DARK SHADOWS, we shared the insights of Dr. Destruction (a life long fan of the show) which you can revisit HERE. Destruction wasn’t the only one eager to share his two cents as horror hostess, Penny Dreadful, also posted her own blog on the subject (see HERE). I suddenly found myself wishing I could sit down with the two of them (metaphorically speaking) and have them answer a few questions regarding their immense fandom of the show. And here’s what happened…
Celebrity encounters at horror fan conventions range from warm and fan-friendly (like George Romero, Robert Englund, & Lance Henriksen) to disconnected/self-absorbed (Linda Blair & Lisa Marie). And then there’s Gary Busey…
One of the best parts of any convention for the Daves is re-connecting with the many horror hosts we have met since we began this site in July of 2010. The only downside is that in many instances, there is so much going on that it is hard to really spend some quality time with them. Between them signing autographs and taking pictures and us covering the event, down time is rare. Luckily this changed somewhat at the ROCK & SHOCK Convention in Worcester this year.
By Richard Church~
Please grade on a curve, as I am writing this at 3AM (and I’ve been up since 6AM, yesterday), and these accounts may or may not be completely fabricated!
I’m always going to remember this week for two reasons; 1) I was somehow able to have an accident in a rental car halfway across the country and 2) I met Ormon FREAKIN’ Grimsby! I’m happy to say that latter went a long way in easing the pain of the former!
While it was the National Horror Host, Svengoolie, who is indirectly responsible for bringing the Daves together as friends, it has always been our stance that TERROR FROM BEYOND THE DAVES was really the bastard child of the 2010 Vampira Tribute and SCARY MONSTERS MAGAZINE. In reality, the two are complimentary of each other. Within the pulpy pages of the world’s only “REAL Monsters Magazine,” classic monsters as well as Horror Hosts have always been featured side-by-side. And why shouldn’t they be? For many of us adult Monster kids, it was the classic commercial hosts who introduced us to all the greats be it Godzilla, The Universal Monsters, the films of Hammer Studios, the wonderful “B” movies of Roger Corman, as well as those from directors who were slightly…ahem…less gifted.
DAVE F: If you attended the 2011 Indianapolis Horrorhound Weekend, with the intention of finding the many horror hosts in attendance, you should have had no trouble in doing so. Occupying their own room this year, most were together in a single spot (with the exception of Sammy Terry & Joe Bob Briggs).
We had passed this section on our way to the celebrity rooms and noted a few familiar faces. As we entered, we immediately saw Roxsy Tyler, Midnite Mausoleum, and Dr. Calamari. Dr Calamari (easy to recognize as the guy with the tentacles coming out of his face) is part of a troop of performers called DARK CARNIVAL.
Living in Rhode Island, we have never really had our own horror host. The horror hosts I have seen over the years for the most part have been because of cable television and recorded shows that people have sent me. Thankfully though, the closest horror host we do have is also one of the most popular…Penny Dreadful from Massachusetts. Penny has been the subject of multiple blogs on our site and my co-blogger Dave Fuentes has an article coming out on her in the spring issue of SCARY MONSTERS MAGAZINE. Her show, SHILLING SHOCKERS, can be seen locally on cable access as well as on internet channels like THE MONSTER CHANNEL and ALTERNATE REALITIES TV.
Last Friday, the Horror Hosting world was rocked with the news that their beloved friend, and fellow host, Barry Hobart a.k.a. Dr. Creep had passed away. As neither of The Daves had the privilege of meeting Dr. Creep nor had any familiarity with his show, we did not feel qualified to present our own tribute piece. Instead we felt it would be more appropriate to hear from his peers, as well as those whom had met and worked alongside him. Before his death we felt it unfortunate that we never me Mr. Hobart. After reading some of the amazing tributes below, it is even more regretful.
Ever since Vampira cooed to her pet spider, “Rolo,” and the great Zacherly whispered “my dear” to an invisible paramour just outside the camera’s reach, sidekicks have been a common feature of horror hosted shows.
These companions are often as colorful and diverse as their host creators. Some are the skeletal variety such as Svengoolie’s Tombstone or Wolfman Mac’s conniving Boney Bob. Others are even more bizarre and imaginative such as Doktor Goulfinger’s Count Zygote (the world’s first horror host fan), Ms Monster’s..”ahem”.. melons “Tit & Tat,” or even a coy houseplant whom Mr. Lobo affectionately refers to as “Miss Mittens.”
If you mention “horror host” to someone randomly on the street more than likely the response will be Elvira. If you mention “horror host” to a fan chances are you will get a whole list of classic characters, including Vampira, Zacherley, Svengoolie, Morgus The Magnificent, The Ghoul, Sir Graves Ghastley, Dr. Paul Bearer, Ghoulardi and many, many others. Even names like Bob Wilkins and John Stanley may be mentioned. Though many of these hosts have come and gone, one is still going strong in the Washington, DC area. His name is Count Gore DeVol.
For a lot of people, when they think of horror hosts, they think of characters such as vampires, ghouls, werewolves or even mistresses of the dark. They don’t think of horror hosts as being someone basically dressed in a suit and being themselves, a fan of monster movies. This actually doesn’t happen very often…in the past we had Bob Wilkins and John Stanley. Today we have Mr. Lobo!
Since delving into the world of horror hosting, I have come across many diverse points of view. Debates regarding who is worthy of the title of “horror host,” who’s the better and most original host, or whether or not true hosts even exist in a post local TV world often come up. This is not surprising since hosts and their fans are, above all else, human beings. Despite all these varying opinions, I was surprised to discover that there was one thing just about everyone agreed on -
Horror hostess, Penny Dreadful is the one to watch!
On the final day of the convention, we packed our belongings and loaded the car before making a final sweep of the main hall. The Vampira Tribute began mid day and I stood in line to enter the event. In the distance, I could see all the hosts talking and joking around with each other. After spending the previous days moving about the convention, attending to all their individual commitments, this was the moment that would bring all the participating hosts together.
Saturday promised to be the busiest day of the Horrorhound convention. Wanting to get an early start, I immediately went down to the main hall after breakfast. Due to the large number of hosts attending the Vampira Tribute, I had no illusions about meeting them all. In an effort to stay focused, I created a short list of the ones I really wanted to meet.
The main hall of the convention was immense. Locating the horror hosts required careful navigation through crowds of people to reach the opposite side. Once there, you’d find an entire section dedicated to them, along with a schedule roster listing their availability. As many of them were also filming excerpts for their own shows or even entire web casts, catching them all would require frequent visits.