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Beauty and the Beast: Monsters and their Molls

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Every year, when October rolls around, we here at Bullz-Eye start scrambling to come up with a Halloween-themed feature. Last year, we put together a list of our top-15 horror movies, and, sure, we could’ve done that again, but what would’ve been the point? Were there really any releases within the last year that would’ve changed our list? Granted, “The Descent” was creepy…but not top-15-of-all-time creepy. So we started thinking of other aspects of Halloween, and we kept coming back to the idea of doing something on monsters. But as we looked at our list of monsters, we – and by “we,” I mean the wife of one of our editors (hi, Jenn!) – noticed an interesting trend: Behind every good monster is a woman. Sometimes she loves him, sometimes she doesn’t…but if she doesn’t, well, hey, he’s a monster; that’s not going to stop him from loving her. So with that premise in mind, we present a list of our favorite monstrous men (and beasts) and their lovely ladies.

Dracula and Mina Harker
DraculaMina Harker’s suitor was a real pain in the neck. (Let it never be said that Bullz-Eye is afraid to go with a cheap joke. Ever.) But I kid. It wasn’t exactly love between Mrs. Harker and Count Dracula, but a poll of 100 guys finds that the sharing of bodily fluids is acceptable in lieu of actual romance…and, as we all know, Dracula sucks. In fact, the true love of Mina’s life was realtor Jonathan Harker, who, on a business trip to Transylvania, ends up being held prisoner in Dracula’s castle. When he escapes and returns to the waiting arms of his wife, they plan to extract revenge on the Count…but Dracula hears of this and, in return, he visits and bites Mina repeatedly. (In later years, Dracula would improve his technique and master love at first bite, thanks to George Hamilton, but this was still in the early days.) As a result of this repeated sucking, a bond is created between Dracula and Mina, one which ends pretty soon after he takes a stake to the heart just before sundown. Still, this was a guy who brought new meaning to the term “necking," and therefore it’s safe to suspect that Mina never forgot their brief but torrid relationship. So, hey, fangs for the memories, Drac. (Okay, I’m sorry, that was bad, even for me.) – Will Harris

King Kong and Ann Darrow
King KongImagine meeting a girl for the first time and having her scream bloody murder. Pretty much squashes any hope you may have had for a meaningful long-term relationship, doesn’t it? Then again, you can’t exactly blame Ann Darrow (Naomi Watts) for reacting that way the first time she caught sight of the 25-foot Kong, considering the Skull Island natives had her strapped to a wooden scaffold as a delectable sacrificial offering at the time. Talk about your bad first impressions. But this is where director Peter Jackson set his epic apart from the two previous versions of the film (1933 and 1976), because not only do we see the ape fall for the girl, but we see the girl fall for the ape too. Sure, Ann’s love for Kong is more akin to a girl’s love for her dog than a girl’s love for her beau, but there’s no doubting that she genuinely cares for the big lug because you, the viewer, can’t help but love him too. Once you get past all the roaring and the chest thumping, you learn that Kong, the last of his kind on Skull Island, is just a lonely, fiercely loyal creature with a gargantuan heart and, apparently, a love for vaudeville. In the end, it was enough to win over Ann and the audience, thus giving hope to misunderstood, overgrown apes everywhere. – Jamey Codding

Angel and Buffy
Some relationships just don’t make sense on paper: She’s a vampire slayer; he’s a vampire. She’s 16; he’s 290. It can’t possibly work…but, oh, does it ever. Drawn to the handsome, brooding stranger in the shadows, Buffy Summers (Sarah Michelle Gellar) is dismayed to learn that Angel (David Boreanaz) is one of the very creatures she lives to destroy. Yet this particular vampire, cursed with a soul by vengeful Gypsies and doomed to walk the earth reeling with guilt over the lives he has taken, proves himself worth sparing. He fights evil, just as Buffy does. He refuses to drink the blood of humans, despite its continued allure. And just when it seems he really has forgotten what it feels like to be a teenager in love…he shows up where Buffy needs him most: at her high-school prom. No, their relationship isn’t perfect – there’s that pesky mishap with the sword through Angel’s heart, for example – but it’s still one for the ages. So never fear, Angel: Buffy may be cookie dough today, but one day soon, she’ll be done. She’ll be cookies…and she’ll be yours forever. – Deb Medsker

The Beast and Belle
Beauty and the BeastIt wouldn’t be a “Beauty and the Beast” list if we didn’t include the originators of the phrase. “A tale as old as time” though it may be, we’re focusing in on the Disney version of the story, if only because, hey, it’s the only animated film ever nominated for a Best Picture Oscar; that’s some serious street cred right there. (Plus, what, you’d rather we went with the TV series, where the beast wanders through the sewers of New York, spouting poetry? I think not.) In the story, our “beast” is actually a prince, cursed with an animalistic appearance because he valued external beauty over the beauty within one’s heart. Meanwhile, our beauty, Belle, is being pursued by the rude and conceited Gaston, the kind of puffed-up blowhard who won’t take no for an answer, no matter how many times she offers it. The meet-cute between our couple occurs when Belle’s father ends up in the Beast’s dungeon, and she volunteers to take his place. The beast accepts, which begins a relationship that starts on decidedly sketchy footing but ends in a romance that’s so sweet that not only the clock and candlestick are talking about it, but the teapot just can’t stop spouting off about how excited she is. In the end, the curse is broken, all possible concerns about bestiality are set aside, and, as with all good Disney films, Belle and her human-again prince live happily ever after…and it’s without any concerns about Gaston, who’s just plunged to his death from the top of the Beast’s castle after a failed attempt at killing the competition. Hey, win-win! – WH

Damien Thorn and Mrs. Blaylock
Damien (Harvey Stephens), from the original "The Omen," is not what you’d call a mama’s boy. No, the lad definitely takes after his father…which, given that his father is prone to introducing himself as “a man of wealth and taste,” then asking people to guess his name, isn’t what you’d call a good thing. The Thorns have their hands full watching Damien, so they hire a nanny by the name of Mrs. Blaylock (Billie Whitelaw). It’s possible she fudged her references a bit; if not, you have to think someone just wasn’t paying attention when they called a Mr. B. Ezelbub. (Still, he did speak very highly of her.) Damien takes to Mrs. Blaylock right away, and she to him; after all, if you’re a minion of Satan, it’s best to get in good with the antichrist while he’s still young. As such, she does everything possible to keep Damien’s adoptive parents away from him, so that she can raise him just like dear demonic Daddy wants. Unfortunately for Mrs. Blaylock, Damien’s adoptive father takes her down while in the process of trying to save the world from his son’s destiny…and unfortunately for Damien’s adoptive father, he’s shot dead before he can rid the world of the antichrist. (Insert George W. Bush joke here.) Still, the lessons Mrs. Blaylock taught Damien would carry him through at least two sequels. After all, the love of a surrogate mother goes to Hell and back. – WH

Jason Voorhees and his Mother
The first love of a man’s life is invariably his mother, and unless you develop an Oedipus complex, that’s pretty normal. Too bad “normal” is about the last adjective you’d use to describe either Jason Voorhees or his mother, Pamela. If you’re a dedicated viewer of the “Friday the 13th” film series, you already know that Mrs. Voorhees had her problems; she was already suffering from schizophrenia before she gave birth to a hydrocephalic child…and when she thought he’d drowned off the shores of Camp Crystal Lake, well, that really sent her over the edge. Nine murders later -- each done in Jason’s name, of course -- Pamela got her just desserts in the form of decapitation; to be fair, though, it came courtesy of the machete she’d been wielding against an innocent girl only moments before. Jason – who, funnily enough, wasn’t actually dead after all (whoopsie!) – paid tribute to his late mother by taking both her head and her body to his shack in the woods, where he built a very lovely shrine/corpse storage area in her memory. It’s just what Pamela would have wanted. – WH

Frankenstein's Monster and the Bride of Frankenstein
Seriously, just how happy was Frankenstein’s monster (Boris Karloff) to see his Bride (Elsa Lanchester) for the first time? It was downright sweet; he might as well have been shifting his weight from one foot to the other, staring at the floor, so lovestruck was he. He approached her, gently took her hand, and called her his friend…and in response, she let out a scream of horror. Oh, sure, she could’ve been playing hard to get – you know how chicks can be, right, guys? – but, geez, when she doesn’t even want to be friends, the chance for things to blossom into love seems pretty slim…and, clearly, the Monster knew it. “She hate me,” he roared, “just like others!” Well, what did you expect with a defeatist attitude like that? In the end, they die together, with the Monster assuring his Bride, “We belong dead.” Okay, there, Negative Neddy, I’m beginning to see where your lady friend was coming from; with that kind of woe-is-me mentality, if I had to spend five minutes alone with you, I’d probably scream, too. – WH

Seth Brundle and Veronica Quaife
When it comes to romance, one should be afraid...very afraid. Seth Brundle (Jeff Goldblum) was just another lanky scientist when he met journalist Veronica Quaife (Geena Davis) at a party, but the chemistry between them gave him the chance to finally use his favorite pick-up line: “Hey, baby, why don’t you come back to my lab and let me show you my telepod?” If Veronica was depressed that Seth’s suggestion turned out not to be a double entendre, she hid it well; even his turning a baboon inside-out didn’t keep him from hitting a home run sooner than later. Unfortunately, while Seth was tweaking his telepod – still not a double entendre, by the way – Veronica still had feelings for her ex, and while on a jealous bender, Brundle decided to test his invention on himself. It worked perfectly…except for the bit where it melded his DNA to that of the fly that was in the other telepod. The new, improved Brundlefly had a sexual stamina Veronica couldn’t keep up with (isn’t that always the way?), plus she also wasn’t too keen on his new tendency to vomit up digestive enzymes, so she wanted to break it off…except, whoops, she’s pregnant. Uncertain if she was going to have a little maggot on her hands or not, she considered an abortion; Brundlefly, unfortunately, was pro-life. Please, people, you need to discuss these things very early in the relationship! In the end, the old adage holds true: Love means never having to say you’re sorry for offing your mutated boyfriend with a shotgun. – WH

Quasimodo and Esmeralda
Victor Hugo first spun the story of “The Hunchback of Notre Dame” in 1831, and it’s such a classic tale that it’s been made into a film on no less than five occasions and made into a stage musical at least twice. Now, to be fair, one of them was written by Dennis DeYoung of Styx, but it still counts. Quasimodo is the title character, a rather hideous fellow who makes his living as a Parisian bellringer. He’s good at what he does, but the downside to such a career is that it’s made him deaf as a stone. When Quasimodo is asked by Archdeacon Frollo to kidnap Esmeralda, a beautiful young gypsy, to satisfy his infatuation with her, poor Quaz does the Archdeacon’s bidding because the guy took him in when no one else would. When he’s caught and put on trial, the crowds react poorly toward him (to say the least), but Esmeralda takes pity on him and offers him water…and just like that, Quaz is smitten. He’s in deep smit, in fact, so when there’s a decidedly tragic misunderstanding and Esmeralda is accused of attempted murder, Quaz rescues her and takes her to the safety of the belltower. She still can’t get past his appearance, so there’s no kissin’ and cuddlin’, but it doesn’t lessen her gratitude for his actions. Oddly, in Disney’s version, they opted to change the original ending, where Esmeralda is recaptured and hanged, and a distraught Quasimodo entombs himself along with her body. Too bad. I mean, spending eternity together? That’s love, baby. – WH

Hellboy and Liz
HellboyYou'd think that a demon from Hell would be the perfect catch for a girl with pyrokinetic abilities (I mean, the dude is immune to fire), but alas, even Hellboy and Liz Sherman (Selma Blair) share the kind of relationship problems you'd expect from a couple in group therapy. And while Hellboy only feels normal when he's around fellow freaks like his firestarting crush, Liz is reluctant to use her powers precisely because she wants to be normal. Nice going, you sure know how to make a guy feel welcomed. It's not bad enough that the red-skinned hulk already has a tail, a set of horns and a big, stone Right Hand of Doom to worry about (let alone trying to resist his diabolical heritage just long enough to take down the Nazis), but now he has to deal with a selfish brat that won't show him any affection when they're out in public. It's all take and no give with this one, but what is a guy to do? The woman literally explodes in flames when she gets the slightest bit emotional. And that's not good, especially when you think about what happens each month.... – Jason Zingale

Bill and Beatrix Kiddo
Kill BillShe wanted the quiet life, so…he put a bullet in her head, but not before slaughtering her new husband-to-be, his present family, and everyone else in the chapel. If that doesn’t serve as the textbook definition for monstrous, we are at a loss to explain what does. Aside from the opening massacre, you don’t actually see Bill do anything heinous or cruel. Indeed, one of Bill’s biggest scenes in the original "Kill Bill" consists of him telling Beatrix a story by campfire, filled with lengthy interludes on the flute. But since he has five of the meanest, deadliest people on the planet paying him the utmost respect, it is understood that Bill is a badass motherfucker. And who else would that BAMF be attracted to but Beatrix, who had the nickname Black Mamba, after the deadliest snake on the planet? Once that mamba awakens from her coma, well, you know the phrase about hell having no fury. She kills anyone and everyone that gets in her way, until she finds Bill (along with the daughter she had while comatose) and, after a few awkward but pleasant exchanges, she drops Bill in his tracks with the old five-point exploding heart technique. It’s another retelling of Frankenstein’s monster and Bride of Frankenstein, with samurai swords. – David Medsker

Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes
“Okay, sign here, here, here, here and here. That last one has to be in blood. You heard me. Good, now remember, if anyone asks you anything about anything – the sky, my career, Scientology, the beach ball – the answer is always “Amazing.” Got it? How ya feelin’? That’s right, amazing, good girl. Now don’t worry, the questions about your retirement will be over as soon as they’ve begun. What’s that? Check the contract, kiddo. Section 4, paragraph 3, line 17, it’s right there in black and white. And red, from the blood. Oh, by the way, your parents called when you were in the shower, and they said that they were going away on a trip, and they would be gone a long, long time and that you shouldn’t try to contact them. I don’t know, someplace where they don’t have phones. Yes, there are still places on Earth that don’t have phones. Trust me, I know a lot about the subject. Speaking of subjects, let’s switch this one. How do I look? That’s right, sweetie: amazing. Want some more Kool Aid?” – David Medsker

Edward Scissorhands and Kim Boggs
The concept of a guy with scissors for hands is so freaking weird that you’d never imagine that it could be such an enchanting love story. Oh, it’s still weird – after all, it is a Tim Burton flick – but at its core, "Edward Scissorhands" remains yet another re-spinning of the “Beauty and the Beast” concept that inspired this piece in the first place. Edward (Johnny Depp) is decidedly misunderstood, labeled a freak by the folks in the suburban neighborhood for having sharp metal blades where his hands ought to be, but after being taken in by Avon lady Peg Boggs and her family, he falls in love with Peg’s teenage daughter, Kim (Winona Ryder). Despite his Robert Smith ‘do, it’s still not love at first sight, making it almost certainly the first time any girl ever preferred Anthony Michael Hall over Johnny Depp. Inevitably, Kim comes around and finds what a gentle soul Edward has (and what an asshole her jock boyfriend is), but the sad reality is that she and Edward are from two different worlds…and his is much pointier. They go their separate ways, but since the story is told by an elderly Kim, it’s confirmed once again that true love does not diminish over time. – WH

Shrek and Princess Fiona
If Princess Fiona didn’t have her own dirty little secret, I still contend that Shrek wouldn’t have had a snow cone’s chance in hell with her. Bottom line: Fiona is HOT – you’ve got to be if you have Cameron Diaz providing your voice – and Shrek is, well, a green ogre with a big ole gut, bushy eyebrows, gapped teeth, and those goofy ears that look like little trumpets sticking out of each side of his head. Of course, when you sprout your own set of trumpet ears every night, your standards are bound to sink, so it’s easy to see why Fiona falls for the lovable green lout. After all, he did rescue her from a fire-breathing dragon, and he’s got an endearing sense of humor to boot. But, come on girl, it’s time to fess up: if you didn’t have a couple pints of ogre blood running through your veins, you’d be shacking up with Prince Charming right now in the kingdom of Far Far Away and you would’ve given Shrek the dreaded “we can still be friends” talk years ago. – JC

Oz and Willow
Some girls use Halloween as an excuse to let their inner Playboy Bunny hang out; Willow Rosenberg (Alyson Hannigan) takes the opposite approach. She bundles up in a hilariously elaborate Eskimo costume and thereby catches the eye of Dingoes Ate My Baby lead guitarist Daniel “Oz” Osbourne (Seth Green). With their matching red hair, wry wit and introspective nature, the two seem a perfect couple…but this being “Buffy the Vampire Slayer,” their happiness can’t last. Bitten on the finger by his lycanthropic young cousin, Oz becomes a werewolf. Terrified of doing harm to Willow or her friends, Oz voluntarily imprisons himself for the three nights a month when the beast within him takes over. The solution seems to work…until a feral female named Veruca puts him in touch with his animal instincts, and Oz the werewolf betrays the heart of Oz the man. Unwilling to risk hurting Willow more than he already has, Oz leaves Sunnydale to seek a better means of controlling his condition, and Willow makes a new friend named Tara. – Deb Medsker

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