Ashley Lister’s A-Z of Horror: W is for Witches

 Witches come across as a type of woman who is mightily pissed off. There is good reason for this. According to writer and historian Ellen Castelow, “Witchcraft was made a capital offence in Britain in 1563, although it was deemed heresy and denounced as such by Pope Innocent VIII in 1484. From 1484 until around … Read more

Ashley Lister’s A-Z of Horror: V is for Video Nasties

I grew up when video nasties were a real thing. Nowadays they’re a chapter in the history books akin to superstition: something close to the idea of burning witches or knocking on wood for good luck.   To contextualise this, VCRs (Video Cassette Recorders) were first made commercially available in 1976. Prior to this, if … Read more

Ashley Lister’s A-Z of Horror: T is for Torture

 nounthe action or practice of inflicting severe pain or suffering on someone as a punishment or in order to force them to do or say something. verbinflict severe pain or suffering on. In the real world torture should not exist and is indicative of a warped society. In fiction, particularly horror fiction, torture is a wonderful … Read more

Ashley Lister’s A-Z of Horror: Q is for Quarantine

Q is for Quarantine By Ashley R Lister   (Please note, a version of this article appeared in issue 17 of The Digital Dead).   “That would never happen.” I think it’s fair to say that these are words that most of us have said at some point during our careers as aficionados of the … Read more

Ashley Lister’s A – Z of Horror: O is for Omen

Start listing classic horror movies from the 70s and, after mentioning The Exorcist and The Amityville Horror, it won’t take long before someone suggests The Omen. The Omen (1976) was directed by Richard Donner and written by David Seltzer. According to Wikipedia: The story introduces Robert Thorn, the American Ambassador in Italy who adopts the … Read more

Ashley Lister’s A – Z of Horror: N is for Necronomicon

Necronomicon is a fictional grimoire, first appearing in the stories by horror writer HP Lovecraft, and later being mentioned by his followers. It was first referenced in Lovecraft’s 1924 short story ‘The Hound’ written in 1922, although its most nefarious author, the ‘Mad Arab’ Abdul Alhazred, had been quoted a year earlier in Lovecraft’s ‘The … Read more

Monsters

Monsters

Monsters come in all shapes and sizes. From the gigantic battling behemoths Godzilla and King Kong to the all-consuming cellula beasts in The Thing. Huge accent gods found at the Mountains of Madness or insignificant humans whose atrocities in death camps and killing fields far outdo those of fictional creatures. The primal fear of what … Read more

It’s Only A Movie

Oh the horror, oh how she screams.The glint of the knife’s steel,Reflected off the studio lights.Don’t worry it’s not real. The masked killer reveals his face,He puts away the knife.‘Don’t be frightened my dear’, he saysAnd hugs his on-screen wife. The fear has gone, she’s all safe now.She’s relaxed, she feels groovy.There is no need … Read more