Nato And Remy’s Last Stand: Masks Make The Man

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Nato: Hey everyone, had a super rough week and was even busier last weekend (as you could tell by our super-short hiatus), so I’m going to let my good pal Remy welcome you into this week’s post. He’s a gnarly writer and a horror nut like me, so what’s the worst that can happen? I leave you all in the best of hands!

Remy: I make masks, you know? I know you don’t, because the only people who know that are all dead – but I really do. My love for horror caused me to start picking up different old school masks and modding them out. The thing is, once you have a terrifying mask, there’s really nothing you can do but go out and murder people in them. I mean I put so much effort into them, why shouldn’t I show them off?! For that reason alone, I only have three. Do you want to see them? Don’t worry, you will.

Now onto the masks that strike horror in my heart and fear in my mask-rection (boom), making the protagonists of these films that much more terrifying.

Nato: Umm, that went, well?

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Nato – The Collector (The Collector)

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Why am I obsessed with The Collector? I wasn’t blown away by The Collector itself, but after I saw The Collection, a killer wearing the laziest S&M outfit I’ve ever seen is all I can talk about.

But when talking about masks, there’s something to be said about the crudely fitted black mask which The Collector wears. Something about the way it grips the front of his face tightly, vibrantly popping his bright and beady eyes, which makes him all the more intimidating even though he completes it with nothing but black slacks and a black turtleneck. The haplessness is forgotten though once he tightens the mask strings taut while wearing leather gloves, making that unnerving, crunchy, squeaky noise – like a bad night of bondage. I’m cringing just hearing that noise…

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Remy – Leslie Vernon (Behind the Mask: The Rise Of Leslie Vernon)

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I’m not even sure what is about those big hollow eyes that messes me up so much, but they do. Those massive black eye-holes paired with that odd, grey skin color makes the mask from Behind the Mask something truly terrifying to behold. I also think the movie showing the mythos of how he gets ready to put the mask on and what it symbolizes adds a great deal to the fear factor the mask has.

Oh yeah, this is one of the three masks I have, only with no mouth, which makes it even creepier. Or me even creepier. Not sure. Same thing.

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Nato – Sam (Trick ‘R Treat)

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Trick ‘R Treat is one of the greatest horror anthologies of our time, and a huge part of that is our horrifying Master of Ceremonies, Sam. Easily mistaken for a youngster just out begging for some harmless candy, we soon learn there’s something much more sinister to Sam’s intentions – unless you follow the rules of Halloween that is.

Although there’s nothing astonishingly terrifying about Sam’s scarecrow-type burlap sack of a mask, it’s what’s hidden underneath that really makes the mask worth it. The funny part is, I was convinced writer/director Michael Dougherty wouldn’t treat us to such a reveal, but man did that make Sam all the more awesome. He’s so awesome in fact, you can see him tormenting other holidays just to remind us how far away Halloween is via FEARnet.

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Remy – Dr. Decker (Nightbreed)

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Yes, I’m talking about Nightbreed again, okay? This time, though, I am focusing on Dr. Decker’s mask (worn by horror director David Cronenberg) and just how unsettling that blank canvas was. I mean, he had button eyes. BUTTON F*CKING EYES! There is no way he could have seen through those, yet he did. And the zipper mouth? I’m sorry Nato but The Collector was OBVIOUSLY inspired by this mask, because it is the kind of thing you see once and never, ever forget.

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Nato – Jason (Friday the 13th franchise)

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Ok, how am I going to talk about iconic horror masks without picking quite possibly the most recognizable mask in horror cinema history? Of course it’s Jason Voorhees! I don’t care how mainstream I’m being with this pick – that lumbering, machete-wielding demon-spawn deserves a spot on this list just like any of the other masked murders.

Don’t believe me? Try this. Close your eyes, clear your head, then think of the first horror mask that comes to mind. Is it a hockey mask, covered in grime and blood, hiding the disfigured face only the craziest of mothers could love? No? Shut up, it is, don’t toy with me. It’s Jason’s hockey mask and you know it.

Through all the variations, from the simplest of white goalie masks to the futuristic chrome space-mask, Jason would be nothing without his accentuating facial characteristic which has become a piece of movie history. Without it, he’d just be another slasher killer. With it, he’s a horror legend. Plus, it paved way for the line “Dude, that goalie was pissed about something!”

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Remy – All Three Masks (The Strangers)

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Which one was scariest? The boy, who had what looked like a flour sack on his head re-purposed as a mask? The way you could barely see his eyes in all that fabric? Or Babydoll, who had the cute face, which was so cute it was pure evil, with the big eyes and pigtails? Lastly, there was something so off putting about the Pin-Up Girl mask, with its blank expression and implied Hollywood aesthetic. By themselves, they were scary enough, but when all three were going after our couple at once, that was shit-your-pants terrifying. Even crazier is knowing the masks hid nothing but the faces of regular kids who were just looking to “kill” some time.

By time, I mean Liv Tyler.

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Nato – Hannibal Lecter (The Silence Of The Lambs)

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Just as recognizable as Jason’s mask, Hannibal Lecter’s mask is only made more terrifying through a timeless performance by Sir Anthony Hopkins, accentuated by having his face only half-hidden. Still visible are those crazy wandering eyes, menacing choppers, and wrinkly forehead which he uses to show emotion. Physically we can see every part of Hannibal is bat-shit cannibalistic crazy, but the bite-proof mask just confirms it.

There’s also a legendary style to Hannibal’s mask now that The Silence Of The Lambs is considered a classic of the horror genre. Sure, when you think horror masks, you think Jason’s hockey mask first, but what about second? I don’t know about you, but the above picture is the second one that instantly comes to mind. It’s real, genuine head-wear meant to protect the innocent which bumps up the horror levels on Hopkin’s character just through real-life relatability. Plus, it’s essentially a muzzle, and only the craziest of criminals would have to wear a muzzle.

Hannibal is one of them, wearing a mask so recognizable it might as well be part of his face.

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Remy – The Babyface Mask (The Hills Run Red)

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Okay, so this movie may have sucked some serious open-ass, but the mask the killer wore in this film is one of my favorite slasher masks of all time. It is the face of a baby, all kept together with barbed wire, the jaw not even connected to the top piece. It was such a shame that this movie was so bad, because it was a waste of such a good mask design. But don’t worry, I am keeping the dream alive. https://vine.co/v/bruhLFQLAd7

So have we inspired you all to start making your own horror masks? No? That’s probably a good thing. Did you at least like our list? Which horror masks are some of your favorites? Let us know!

*A special thanks to Remy for stepping in to guest write! Feel free to follow either of us on Twitter for even more insanity and updates:

Matt Donato

Remy Carreiro

Like what you read? Check out last week’s edition where Remy and I host our very own Oscar-type horror awards dubbed The Igor Awards!

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  • Gem Seddon

    Nightbreed….Dr Decker. A terrifying visage I utterly agree with Remy.