8 Real-Life Horror Monsters Walking The Earth Right Now
Generally speaking, there are two kinds of horror movies out there: the man-based horror and the nature-based horror. Man horror is your Saw, your Halloween, your Sex And The City. Nature horror is Lake Placid, The Day Of The Triffids and the incomparable Night Of The Lepus. Man horror can get pretty predictable after a while -- how many ways can a dude gut a marching band, anyway? But, nature horror is like a never-ending surprise bag full of bloody giblets and shredded face meat. Why? Because real, actual nature is a nonstop parade of horrific terror that mimics horror movies at every turn. Behold!
Ant-Killing Assassin Bug: Jeepers Creepers
All things being equal, the name you get as an animal is often a good gauge of how intimidating a beast you are. Guinea pig sounds utterly hilarious. Beaver sounds mildly intimidating and musky. Ant-killing assassin bug sounds like some kind of role Dolph Lundgren should play in a movie you find late one night on Netflix. But, the reality is somehow even more awesome, if you can believe it.
Like the Creeper from the film Jeepers Creepers, the ant-killing assassin bug doesn't just kill his prey -- he also uses their carcasses to make himself better. After injecting an enzyme into ants that liquefies their insides, the assassin bug sucks them dry and piles the exoskeletons onto its back to make a massive Ed Gein backpack of horror. Why do such a crazy thing? Scientists speculate it may be a method of macabre camouflage: Imagine your name is Pete, and you go to a party, and everyone is like, "Hey, Pete!" You leave and then return -- after piling the bodies of 20 of your neighbors on your back. Most people probably won't even notice you under all that.
Butcher-Bird: Vlad The Impaler
It would be awesome if butcher-birds got their name because they assaulted smaller birds with meat cleavers, but we don't live in a world that precious or vile, so we have to make due with birds that murder their prey in less obvious -- but equally morbid -- ways. The butcher-bird chose to model itself after the inspiration for Dracula himself, Vlad The Impaler.
Guess where this murder bird lives. Go on, guess.
When a butcher-bird runs across a tasty tidbit in the wild, be it an errant french fry or some manner of dipshit cricket, the bird will take the prey and stab its ass down on a thorn or busted twig to both teach it a lesson about the arrogance of trying to live in the butcher-bird's neighborhood and also to save it for later. Having your lunch pinned to a tree also helps securing it for eating purposes since, as you may have noticed, birds don't have hands.
Related: The 6 Most Disturbingly Evil Birds
Pink Dragon Millipede: Alien
Throughout the Alien franchise, one of the coolest aspects of the entire species has been its tendency to dribble molecular acid around like Adam Tod Brown dribbling his DNA in the Cracked offices. Whether it's solely the species' blood or sometimes its spit isn't always easy to suss out, but I'm pretty confident I've seen at least one Alien movie in which the little bastard spit acid at someone -- and that's why the pink dragon millipede is terrifying. Not only does it look like the latest Disney Kids accessory for demon children, it actually spits cyanide. Like real, deadly, old-timey murder cyanide.
'80s style meets '30s homicide.
When confronted with prey or someone like you wandering through the woods, the millipede shoots a spray of cyanide right in your general direction. If this doesn't subdue you (or whatever else it feels like sending to a fabulously hot-pink demise), it will shoot off another blast and flee. So, your options are being coated in cyanide and then eaten or being coated in cyanide and then coated in cyanide again. I checked with a doctor, and he assured me, those are shitty options.
Bombardier Beetle: Reign Of Fire
Imagine the stark, dreary landscape of a post-apocalyptic future in which mankind has been reduced to splotchy patches of grubby survivors hiding in the rubble of a once-great nation and relying on the skills and prowess of Christian Bale and Matthew McConaughey to keep you safe from the scourge of assholes shooting hot, chemical devastation across your face. Did you just imagine the movie Reign Of Fire? FOOL! I was describing this thing I just made up that is the same as that movie, only with bombardier beetles instead of dragons. Your face is so red.
Like dragons of olde (and of central Michigan), the bombardier beetle is fully capable of mixing noxious chemicals somewhere deep in its crap factory and then spewing them forth with ferocity and burning awfulness. The beetle's abdomen squirts hydroquinone and hydrogen peroxide together, which makes a scorching hot mixture that'll burn your ass like a champ.
Hagfish: Slither/Night Of The Creeps
Hagfish are nature's most disgusting mistake. They look like severed, flaccid ogre dongs and, when threatened, they turn the ocean around them into jizz. Literal gallons of jizz. Not literally. But, literally.
When agitated, the hagfish produces threads of mucous that squeeze out of dozens of glands down its dongy body. This mucous reacts in water to turn into a thick, Jello-like spunk puddle that will choke out any fish foolish enough to try to chow down on one of these gross buggers. Meanwhile, the hagfish just ties itself in knots, using its own body to scrape the slime off and escape and do what it does. And that's where shit gets even creepier.
A hagfish is a mouth and a snot tube. In order to maintain that enviable existence, it needs to do what all of us do: jam its tooth-filled vagina mouth into the soft flesh of a victim and just burrow into what its eating, like every single terrifying alien parasite you've ever seen in a movie from Slither to Night Of The Creeps.
I can't say for sure if the hagfish takes over its victim's body and makes it into a dirty, murderous puppet, but that's just because I don't want to find out.
Stygiomedusa Gigantea: Harry Potter
Look at the name of this thing. Stygiomedusa Gigantea. Stygian means relating to the River Styx, right there in Hades. Medusa is, of course, the snake-headed Gorgon. And Gigantea just means big ass. This is a big-ass Medusa on a river in Hell.
They also call it a giant, purple jellyfish. Its noggin-like bell is about a meter across, and its flappy tentacles are around 6 meters, or 36 feet, in length. It looks pretty much exactly like one of the Dementors from Harry Potter or, at the very least, a drowning victim from a Japanese horror film.
Related: The Drunken Wisdom of Harry Potter
Generally speaking, no one likes bedbugs, and they're the worst pieces of shit in existence. They live in your bed and eat you. Why is that a thing that's allowed to happen? Why can't they live in the woods and produce semisweet nectar that birds enjoy? Fuckin' bedbugs.
Inexplicably worse than everything you know about bedbugs already is the fact they engage in traumatic insemination, an activity that is literally more disturbing than it already sounds, and it actually even manages to shame the way the aliens of Alien reproduce. Remember them? The aliens? How a vagina-butt with fingers leaps like an NBA All-Star player onto your face and jams a floppy dong down your gullet and puts an alien baby in your chest? Remember that? At least the aliens have the courtesy to use a hole you already have.
"300 thread count? You deserve this. Step up your game, asshole."
Once a boy bedbug falls in love with a girl bedbug, he uses his knife-like wang to stab a hole in her abdomen and fill it with his seed. The lady limps off thinking she got the shit end of the reincarnation stick as the wound heals or maybe gets infected, and little awful bedbugs start forming inside of her. It's the circle of life.
Bears: I Know What You Did Last Summer
Bears are absolutely adorable when they're stuffed or named Paddington. In the real world, unless they're tiny little cubs, watch out. And even then, did you see The Revenant? Did you see what happens when Leonardo DiCaprio runs afoul of two cubs? The mother bear allegedly raped him. Best to avoid these bestial killing machines altogether.
An unnamed Russian hunter thought he could take on one of these merciless beasts and took his shot. He hit the bear in the leg, and it fled, wounded but alive. The hunters couldn't find it. Meanwhile, like any good serial killer born from a need for vengeance, the bear regrouped and plotted.
It was smarter than average.
The hunters spent an uneventful night in the woods. But, when they returned to camp the next day, the stage was set for dread. Claw tracks through the mud led to one car -- one car among three, aka the car belonging to the hunter who had taken that fateful shot, that was now torn to pieces and smashed apart by massive, inhuman claws. The other two cars were untouched, and the hunter had no food in his vehicle. This was no random animal attack. This was a message.
"I have your registration. I know where you live."
Consider what would have happened if the hunter had been alone in the woods. His means of transportation had been destroyed. He would have been stranded. Stranded with a bear smart enough to track down and destroy his vehicle. It may as well have written "I Know What You Did" in blood on the smashed hood.
Check out other animal freaks of nature in 9 Animals That Are Just Lazy Combinations Of Other Animals and learn how best to avoid fish with human faces in 13 Real Animals Lifted Directly Out Of Your Nightmares.
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