LATEST | FEATURES | INTERVIEWS | NEWS | FRIGHTFEST | REVIEWS Swamp Thing - A Celebration
By James Whittington, Thursday 20th November 2008
Very few comic strip characters transfer successfully to the big screen. History is littered with failures such as The Phantom, Popeye and err The Fat Slags. Horror/Fantasy figures have also had a rough deal with movies such as Judge Dredd springing to mind. But there have been some really cool interpretations including Tim Burton’s Batman and Sam Raimi’s Spider-Man trilogy. So a few eyebrows were raised back in the early when controversial horror movie maker Wes Craven decided to take DC Comics ecological warrior Swamp Thing and turn him into a box office star.
Created by Len Wein and Berni Wrightson in 1971 Swamp Thing is a walking eco warning, a defender of all things environmental. He was originally a scientist named Alex Olsen but he got caught up in the deliberate sabotaging of his lab. The ensuing chemical blast turned him into a walking piece of vegetation. Bizarrely the characters captured comic reader’s attention almost immediately and lead to some incredibly strong stories some with environmental messages that Sting would be proud of.
Swamp Thing the movie was released in 1982 and since then has gained one of the biggest cult followings ever recorded, something most movies can only wish for. Written by Craven himself he took a basic “Good Vs Evil” plot added some dodgy SFX and employed a guy named Dick Durock to play the hulking mass of pond life!The plot is very straight forward as busty babe Adrienne Barbeau finds she must help a scientist keep his rejuvenation formula safe from a team of bad guys as it has turned him into an enormous and deformed swamp creature. And that’s basically it. This is classic fantasy action made at a time when it was OK to go out on a limb and make movies that dared to be different. This ecologically aware shocker from Craven is one of his most inventive efforts and contains one of the most memorable skinny dip sequences ever put to celluloid! If you’ve not seen it keep checking Zone Horror’s TV Guide for transmission dates.
It would take another seven years for the biological beast to revisit the big screen, this time he was given a new love interest in the shape of Heather Locklear. In The Return of Swamp Thing an evil scientist tries to create an army of mutants which threaten Abby Arcane (Locklear). As before this one has a straightforward plot but one that’s brimming with invention and horror fun. The effects are a bit more elaborate and the acting just on the right side of hammy with Durock once again giving great pathos to the marsh man. Director Kim Wynorski packs a lot of action into the movie making giving it quite an adrenalin rush. Look out for The Return of Swamp Thing premiering on Zone Horror on March 28th.
Dick Durock may have thought that was it for his most famous role but in 1990 a television series was given the green light and ran for 3 seasons and a total of 72 episodes. Though slightly lacking the dark horror of the movies it still made an impact and became essential viewing for those bored with all the soap operas that were suffocating the schedules at the time. Plots were a bit on the samey side and Swamp Thing sometimes took a back seat, but it tried the best it could and ran far longer than anyone could have predicted.
Every year or so a rumour that a new Swamp Thing project is in the pipeline rears from the land of movie magic, but until one does it’s up to Zone Horror to help keep the marsh-man legacy alive.
MORE FEATURES Horror Channel goes back to the future with Channel premiere of sci-fi thriller series Extant from May 11
Posted on Tuesday 4th May 2021
Horror Channel will be continuing its commitment to bringing cult and classic sci-fi to its audience with Seasons 1 and 2 of the CBS Studios/Amblin Television production of Extant, starring Halle Berry as astronaut Molly Woods, who returns home to her family, inexplicably pregnant after 13 months in outer space on a solo mission.
First aired in 2014 and Executively Produced by Steven Spielberg, the futuristic sci-fi thriller was written by rookie Mickey Fisher, whose initial script of Extant won a screenwriting contest. before coming to the attention of Amblin and Spielberg.
Astronaut Molly Woods (Berry) returns hom...SHARE: READ MORE Paranormal forces take over Horror Channel in May
Posted on Thursday 15th April 2021
Otherworldly forces take over Horror Channel with Supernatural Week, eight nights of ghostly scares highlighted by the Channel premieres of Paranormal Activity, and creepy body horror, It Follows.
The special event, running from Saturday 15 May - Saturday 22 May, also sees the return of genre favourites such as demon chiller Firstborn, John Carpenter's classic car-rage chiller Christine, the twisted supernatural gasper Sinister, the star-studded supernatural cult classic Flatliners, the paranormal chiller The Quiet Ones, and Sean Byrne's devastating ride into psychological trauma, The Devil's Candy.
The week gets underway on Saturday 15th with a movie directed, photographed, produced, wri...SHARE: READ MORE Horror Channel presents two classic monstrous movie marathons for the Easter Weekend
Posted on Monday 22nd March 2021 Horror Channel presents Classic Marathon Weekend - two monstrous movie marathons for the Easter Weekend, kicking off at 1pm on Saturday 3rd April with Classic Horror Day, featuring some of the most iconic monster movies of all-time, including: Ted Browning and Karl Freund's Dracula, starring Bela Lugosi as the infamously seductive Count, James Whale's genre-defining Frankenstein, starring Boris Karloff, Karl Freund's mesmerising The Mummy, with Boris Karloff further establishing himself as one of the great horror stars in film history, The Wolf Man, with Lon Chaney, Jr. as the original werewolf and the pulp horror classic Creature From The B... SHARE: READ MORE Horror Channel bares its teeth in March with Vampire Week
Posted on Tuesday 16th February 2021
Time to get the garlic out as Horror Channel presents Vampire Week, a bitefest of vampire movies from 13 - 19 of March, led by the channel premiere of 30 Days Of Night, David Slade's savage riff on the vampire myth, starring Josh Hartnet and Melissa George.
There are also classics and cult favourites to sink your teeth in to, including Matt Reeves' critically-acclaimed vampire fantasy Let Me In, and Tom Holland's voracious teen vampire hit Fright Night, John Carpenter's Vampires, a horror Western starring James Woods, as a vengeful, stake-wielding bloodsucker hunter, and Francis Ford Cappolas powerful Bram Stoker's Dracula, starring Gary Oldman as the im...SHARE: READ MORE Horror Channel February premieres feature zombie action, bloodsucking comedy and Jet-Li heroics
Posted on Tuesday 19th January 2021
Horror Channel has three thrilling primetime Saturday night channel premieres in February including the UK TV premiere of Chee Keong Cheung's REDCON-1, a British zombie action epic, starring Mark Strange as a Special Forces operative battling a virus outbreak, Plus, there are Channel premieres for Eat Locals in which actor Jason Flemying makes his directorial debut with a bloodsucking comedy chiller featuring Mackenzie Crook, Dexter Fletcher and Annette Crosbie, and The One, James Wong's flashy superhero martial arts drama, starring Jet Li and Jason Stratham.
Other highlights for February include the John Carpenter remake of Village Of The Da...SHARE: READ MORE Horror Channel ushers in New Year with monstrous Saturday night premieres
Posted on Tuesday 15th December 2020
Horror Channel gets the New Year off to a horrifying start with three thrilling primetime Saturday night channel premieres, including John Schlesinger's gripping psychological thriller Pacific Heights, starring Melanie Griffith, Matthew Modine and Michael Keaton. Plus, there's Clive Barker's dark monster fantasy Nightbreed, starring David Cronenberg, and Anthony DiBlasi's claustrophobic, intensely creepy Last Shift.
Other highlights for January include Bernard Rose's Frankenstein, a stylishly smart update of the classic myth, starring Xavier Samuel, Danny Huston, Carrie-Anne Moss and Tony Todd, Scott Stewart's compulsive alien home-invasion thriller Dark Skies, Serenity, the big screen continuation o...SHARE: READ MORE More Horror hits My5 in December
Posted on Wednesday 9th December 2020
If you've got access to My5 you catch up with some Horror Channel prime cuts right now!SHARE: READ MORE Horror Channel unwraps its slate of seasonal shockers
Posted on Tuesday 17th November 2020
Xmas hauntings, festive nightmares, sadistic serial killers and warrior priests...Be prepared for seasonal shocks a-plenty on Horror Channel this December, with a selection of prime-time movies including an Xmas Day screening of Frank Khalfoun's boundary-pushing Christmas crime slasher P2, starring Wes Bentley and the George Clooney/Steven Soderbergh produced Wind Chill, in which Emily Blunt spends Christmas Eve fighting off a horde of menacing apparitions.
Also unwrapped are John Carpenter's classic car-rage chiller Christine, vampire action thriller Priest, starring Paul Bettany, the high velocity sci-fi drama Skyline and the supernatural twister Sinister, starring...SHARE: READ MORE Horror Channel is now on Freeview channel 68
Posted on Tuesday 27th October 2020
Horror Channel has moved to Freeview Channel 68 so you may need to re-tune to ensure you don't miss out on our super scary Halloween line-up plus much more.
Any issues with retuning check the Freeview website.SHARE: READ MORE Devils, demons and the Occult...Horror Channel gets possessed in November
Posted on Thursday 15th October 2020
Saturday nights in November belong to the vice-like grip of Possessed Season on Horror Channel, with Channel premieres for Exorcist: The Beginning, the prequel to The Exorcist, starring Stellan Skarsgard as Father Merrin, the demon-beleaguered priest, and The Exorcist III, written and directed by William Peter Blatty. There is also a UK TV premiere for Chad Archibald's chilling occult fantasy The Heretics, and Scott Derrickson's supernatural chiller Deliver Us From Evil completes the devilish line-up.
Here's the full line-up:
The season begins on the 7th with Exorcist: The Beginning. Having abandoned his faith, Father Merrin joins an archaeological excavation in Kenya, where ...SHARE: READ MORE Grindhouse style revenge and spaced-out aliens. Day 5 of Grimmfest
Posted on Sunday 11th October 2020
The final day of Grimmfest 2020 holds five movies which will truly satisfy the horror needs of every genre fan out there.
Death Ranch from prolific film maker Charlie Steeds takes us right back to the days of Blaxploitation movies and ups the violence and gore to its limit. 1970s USA, Three African American siblings on the run from the police take refuge at an abandoned Tennessee Ranch, unaware their hideout is on the hunting grounds of a cannibalistic Ku Klux Klan cult...Trapped and tortured, the three must fight tooth and nail to escape alive and take down the bloodthirsty Klan. Incredibly strong and incredibly violent the film doesn't stray from its...SHARE: READ MORE Horror Channel's Stewart Bridle chats to the legendary director Mick Garris
Posted on Saturday 10th October 2020
Today at Grimmfest, Mick Garris, who has been awarded the Horror Channel Grimmfest Lifetime Achievement Award will be taking part in a live Q&A. Earlier in the week he chatted to Horror's Channel Manager Stewart Bridle about his career.SHARE: READ MORE Features Archive: 2021 | 2020 | 2019 | 2018 | 2017 | 2016 | 2015 | 2014 | 2013 | 2012 | 2011 | 2010 | 2009 | 2008 | 2007 PICK OF THE WEEK
Friday 21st May
Sunday 23rd May
Tuesday 18th May