The Horror Honeys: So Bad They Are... Just Bad: Top 5 Bad B-Movie Monsters

So Bad They Are... Just Bad: Top 5 Bad B-Movie Monsters

A Monster Honey Top 5 List by Jennica

"I love monsters, I identify with monsters." -- Guillermo del Toro

As a self-proclaimed and proud monster myself, I have always been drawn to monster movies, whether I'm watching the latest blockbuster or a generously graded B-movie that was made in someone's parents' basement. They remind me that I'm not the only being in the world that is sorely misunderstood and that there isn't anything more beautiful in the world than embracing my own weirdness. And at the end of a rough day, who doesn't enjoy coming home and turning on the TV to find Godzilla wreaking havoc on a metropolitan town or the giant worms in Tremors chasing people down? 

Of course, not all monsters are made equally and lack the expected vicious nature that is supposed to make them monsters. Instead of striking fear-- or at least gratitude-- in the eyes of audience members, some monsters only encourage eye-rolling and hysterical laughter. 

Before addressing such creatures, make note that the poor excuses for "monsters" that follow are defined as mutants-- man-made or otherwise-- or any living thing with abilities or features uncharacteristic of such in real life. Thus, I have excluded supernatural evils such as vampires and werewolves, as well as any plausible force of nature such as bears and sharks. Now that you've been warned, I present to you my top five bad B-movie monsters... 

1. The Crabs in Attack of the Crab Monsters (1957)

After a fellow colleague goes missing on a remote island off the South Pacific, a team of scientists studying nuclear weaponry set out to find him with their only clue being the journal that he had left behind. One by one, the scientists begin to hear the voice of their lost companion leading them to come face to face with giant mutated crabs that feed on the brains of humans to absorb their knowledge. As the island gradually crumbles into the ocean beneath them, the crew must race to defeat the colossal claws of death and set sail as far away as possible.

Directed by the legendary Roger Corman, who has worked on some of my favorite B-movies of all time, Attack of the Crab Monsters undoubtedly puts the "B" in B-movie as well as the "B" in bad. The dragged out anticipation leading up to the appearance of the enormous crabs never fails to knock me unconscious faster than any sleep aide. And when the  creatures finally rear their ugly heads, my disappointment is even more unbearable than the anticipation. 

There are a number of shots in which the monstrous crustaceans can be seen gliding across the land on wheels, and occasionally the legs of crew members appear as well as wires hanging from above. Flooded with mishaps in a time when editing tactics were still quite primitive, you won't have to repeat "It's only a movie" while watching Attack of the Crab Monsters because the cinematic goofs are a constant reminder. 

No strings attached, huh?

2. The Tomatoes in Attack of the Killer Tomatoes! (1978)

After the radio airwaves are filled with a series of reports on people and animals across the United States being attacked by unruly tomatoes, a team of government agents are tasked with investigating the suspicious fruit and putting a stop to the madness. The crew of misfits include a soldier with a strong attachment to his parachute, a deep sea diver who uses his gear on land, an overweight Olympic swimming champion, and a nitwitted master of disguise. While the disastrous team stumble over their own two feet chasing after the tomatoes, an eager young journalist stays a two steps behind to get the scoop.

Get in my belly!
Attack of the Killer Tomatoes is practically a required film on any bad B-movie list, but it also has a cult following... and for good reason. With it's slapstick comedic gags, intentionally (I hope) poor acting, and catchy theme song, it is definitely a fun albeit weird little film. But as far as monsters go, mutated tomatoes have to be the most non-threatening and I find it just a little frustrating that the simple-minded characters are at such a loss as to how to defeat their juicy enemies. Not once is it suggested that everyone should try chowing down on these suckers!  Instead, the solution is to destroy them with bad music and bad acting. 

3. The Imp in Sorority Babes in the Slimeball Bowl-O-Rama (1988)

When three college nerds follow the Tri-Delta girls to the local bowling lane to witness a traditional initiation ritual, things go a little awry... and not in their undies. The sorority girls break into the bowling alley / mall in an effort to steal a trophy only to find that the trophy is being inhabited by an imp that will grant each of them one wish. Being that these are young adults in the 80s, of course their wishes are riddled with vanity and materialism (like duh!). But as their fantasies become a sour reality, it's up to these airheads and the mall janitor to send this whimsical little bugger back where he came from.

Despite having one of the catchiest film titles in monster movie history and starring Linnea Quigley (which I guess is cool if she's your thing), Sorority Babes in the Slimeball Bow-O-Rama is really just another silly 80s scream queen flick featuring a pint-sized monster. The best solution to the tiny problem in this movie suggests that the babes and their geeky shadows "get him in a headlock, kick his butt, and get him back in the trophy." That seems like a lot of work for a tiny gargoyle-like genie. Pro tip: JUST STEP ON HIM! And if the imp's size isn't enough to make anyone laugh, his jive talkin' destroys any remaining ounce of a threat the little guy poses. 

Did someone lose a chihuahua?

4. The Ape-Man in Night of the Bloody Apes (1969)

In an attempt to cure his bedridden son Julio's leukemia, a mad scientist performs an unusual heart transplant, replacing his son's heart with that of an ape from the zoo. Just when the operation appears to be a success, for no reason whatsoever, Julio transforms into a murderous ape... sort of. In classic B-movie fashion, Julio's father as well as the police must track Julio down and put an end to the chaos as he wanders about in the night on a bloody, stabby, rapey rampage.

Night of the Bloody Apes, which is by far the bloodiest movie in this list as its title suggests, pulls out all the beloved B-movie gimmicks. This Mexican oddity includes ass-kicking women, boobies a plenty, gallons of oozy bright red blood, and even actual footage from real life medical procedures for your sick pleasure. But the film also earns its keep on the list due to the incredibly half-assed half-man-half-ape effects.

Cool Hulk cosplay, bro.
Between a face that seems to have been covered in silly putty and el monstruo Gerardo Zepeda's muffled noises that sound neither human nor ape-like, I'm left quite confused as to what the crew on this set were going for. Did they run out of money or just run out of makeup? It's really anyone's guess. And I've always been bothered by the fact that this movie is called Night of the Bloody Apes when there is only one ape... or at least half an ape anyway. Did the rest of the apes go on strike? 


5. Wadzilla in Chillerama (2011)

In the "Wadzilla" segment of the cult anthology film Chillerama, Miles (Adam Rifkin), who is a few sperms short of a good time, is prescribed a new controversial drug to help strengthen his small soldiers. Soon Miles and his doctor discover than not only are Miles's little swimmers getting stronger, but they are also growing to unnatural proportions. When Miles becomes intensely aroused by his hot date in the doorway, he is compelled to take care of business right then. However, this sweet release could be his last as a giant tadpole-like creature slips through his hands and creates a rather sticky situation for the residents of New York City.

It's cumming for you!
It would be easy to refer to any segment of Chillerama in a discussion about bad B-movie monsters because each monster featured in this ridiculous parody of the old drive-in classics is inherently bad. But "Wadzilla" is by far the worst. Only in this segment are two things that have long tickled my fancy-- giant monsters and raunchy sexual humor-- combined in such a way that causes sheer annoyance. The gargantuan sperm never ceases to make me cringe and not in the exciting blood-and-guts sort of way. Someone hand me a barf bag! 

What's the worst B-movie monster you have seen? 
Let's growl about it on Twitter: @PrmQueenFrmMars