Each episode of Shudder's Behind the Monsters examines a horror icon who has broken free of the confines of the film from which it was born and become the stuff of legend.
In 1984 Wes Craven saw the slasher boom filling screens and took it to the next level by leaving reality behind. Other slashers carved through teen bodies; Freddy invaded their minds.
The genre's first black slasher showed up in 1992, rich with subtext about racial tensions in American history. In 2021, he's coming back - and is perhaps the most relevant horror icon imaginable.
Emerging from a low budget independent film, this character who was simply called "Lead Cenobite" would become the undeniable symbol of pleasure and pain and the icon of the Hellraiser franchise.
What started as a nasty spin on 80s consumerism flourished over three decades into an unlikely progressive horror property that refuses to get back on the shelf.
A cheap film shot in 21 days changed the landscape of horror, made several careers, and gave one actress an iconic role that she's tweaking 42 years later.
The producers just wanted to rip off HALLOWEEN. What happened instead was the accidental creation of a machete-wielding avatar of conservative 1980s morality.
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