Why We Need King Kong, Bigfoot and the Loch Ness Monster

King Kong doesn't like his company.
King Kong doesn't like his company.
Godzilla
Godzilla
Movie poster for Godzilla the remake
Movie poster for Godzilla the remake
King Kong battles biplane atop the Empire State Building
King Kong battles biplane atop the Empire State Building
King Kong and blonde femme fatale in the 2005 remake
King Kong and blonde femme fatale in the 2005 remake
Is this really Bigfoot?
Is this really Bigfoot?
Famous "Nessie" hoax photo
Famous "Nessie" hoax photo
Photo from a silent movie version of "Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde"
Photo from a silent movie version of "Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde"
The Alien
The Alien
The Predator
The Predator
The human-like Quetzalcoatl (at right)
The human-like Quetzalcoatl (at right)
The Rhedosaurus duels with the cops
The Rhedosaurus duels with the cops
The dreaded man in a monkey suit!
The dreaded man in a monkey suit!
Four faces of Dracula
Four faces of Dracula
Hercules battles the Hydra
Hercules battles the Hydra
Jason battles skeleton warriors
Jason battles skeleton warriors
Jabba the Hut
Jabba the Hut
Maybe this is Bigfoot . . .
Maybe this is Bigfoot . . .

Imaginary monsters could save us all . . .


Humankind has been dealing with monsters for a long time. Thousands of years ago, Paleolithic cave-dwellers fought monstrous creatures such as short-faced bears and saber-toothed cats - and when they lost, they were devoured! So cave people with an artistic bent painted such carnivorous creatures (as well as herbivores) on cave walls at places such as Lascaux in France, to help them imagine dominance over the beasts of the world and thereby improve their chances of survival.

Then, at the dawn of civilization some 5,000 years ago, imaginary monsters entered the oral tradition, as well as some of the literary works: The Epic of Gilgamesh , Nibelungenlied, Beowulf and The Odyssey . Of course, Greek mythology is filled with horrific monsters such as the Medusa, Hydra, Minotaur and Cyclops. And, in ancient China, the dragon represented a beneficent creature whose presence could mean good luck and prosperity, but these were always terror-inspiring creatures – particularly the fire-breathing ones!

In ancient Mesoamerica, perhaps the most fearsome monster was Quetzalcoatl, the plumed serpent. Another monster that is generally given friendly, if not godlike attributes, Quetzalcoatl, or Kukulcan to the Maya, was at times given the characteristics of a person - perhaps the worst kind of monster! The Aztecs thought Cortes was Quetzalcoatl returning from the East after a long journey, and this led in part to the collapse of their empire in the Valley of Mexico.

By the twentieth century, monsters of a different sort captured the imagination of scientists, scholars and lay people. These were the techno-mythic monsters such as Bigfoot, the Loch Ness Monster, the Yeti or Abominable Snowman, as well as supposed dinosaurs of one sort or another living in the Amazon rain forest and/or the jungles of Equatorial Africa.

Soon technicians began creating monsters of the celluloid nature – King Kong, Godzilla, Gorgo and The Blob. They brought back to life dinosaurs and other fearsome extinct reptiles as well. Monsters of the extraterrestrial nature also came into being in sci-fi novels, movies and television shows. And The Lord of the Rings trilogy provided folks with plenty of hair-raising monsters and just plain old grotesquely ugly folks such as orcs.

On the current television program, Monster Quest, crypto-zoologists and other scientists search for creatures such as Sasquatch, werewolves, “Nessie,” vampires, or dog-sized spiders in the jungles of South America, just to name some. You gotta love these intrepid men and women putting their lives on the line to find monsters that reputedly attack people and even consume them in some cases. Naturally, no such evidence for the existence of the aforementioned creatures has been discovered as yet, but stay tuned.

Video games offer plenty of monster action as well. In this virtual world, people can fight monsters or become monsters themselves. The possibilities of video games seem endless. Perhaps one day all life will become virtual (maybe that’s what heaven or the afterlife is all about), and the ramifications for such – positive or negative - can only be imagined at this time.

However, there’s no need to worry, because this is all good for modern civilization. Humankind needs combat - even if only imaginary - with monsters to help prepare us for the perils in the coming years and decades. After all, couldn’t Global Warming be a kind of monster? How about environmental contamination? Or that asteroid, Apophis, which might hit the earth in 2036? Perhaps it could be said that people are no better than their prowess battling monsters of some kind or another. Monsters can make us better.

(But, perhaps our greatest battles against monsters may be the ones against the monsters within us. After all, Napoleon, Hitler or Stalin could have taken a bite out of King Kong or Godzilla!)

Therefore, let’s hear it for the imaginary monsters. May they help us prosper.

The following is a list of some the most famous and terrifying imaginary monsters:

1. The Loch Ness Monster is reputedly a plesiosaurus that got stuck in some lake in Scotland. To date, Nessie has avoided detection or capture and could be deceased.

2. Bigfoot, that purported primate of the Pacific Northwest, apparently keeps tromping around, leaving huge footprints, but nobody can lay a hand on him no matter how hard they try.

3. Talos is the colossal bronze titan in the Jason and the Argonauts' myth, so well done by stop-motion wizard Ray Harryhausen in the movie made in 1963.

4. The Alien, a ruthless, heartless creature with the inner mouth of a moray eel and acidic blood, terrorizes space folks in this quintessential monster-run-amuck tale.

5. The Predator comes to earth looking for blood sport. Blending with vegetation to the point of invisibility, he’s tough to beat. While confronting this big bad space dude, Arnold tells him, “You’re one ugly motherf-----!”

6. King Kong, the lonely 50-foot ape, takes a shine to a pretty blonde, and then falls head-over-heels in love in New York City.

7. The Medusa is one aspect of the mythical Gorgon. With snakes growing from her head, she ain’t much fun to be around and, if you look her in the eye, she'll rock you out!

8. Godzilla, an atomic age cross between a dinosaur and a gorilla, lays waste to Japan. Later, Godzilla becomes a heroic character, fighting monsters from space and others. In the 1998 remake, Godzilla is so big you know what it eats – everything!

9. The ID monster stars in the sci-fi classic Forbidden Planet. A product of the mind of Dr. Morbius, this cat-like monstrosity wreaks havoc on space colonists.

10. The Hydra is a seven-headed reptilian creature that Jason battles in his quest for the Golden Fleece. In the movie, its teeth become skeleton warriors that fight Jason.

11. Dracula just wants to drink your blood – that’s all, so he can live forever. This devilish guy could have a historical counterpart – Vlad the Impaler. Who is worse?

12. The Werewolf is just a tough guy with lots of hair on his face and big claws. And as long as you don’t try to shoot him with a silver bullet, he won’t tear you apart.

13. The Cyclops, another monster from Greek mythology, has only one eye in the middle of his forehead; nevertheless, he’s big and tough and likes to eat humans for dinner.

14. The Dragon features prominently in Old World myths. The European version has scaly, pterosaur-like wings. Many spit fire, poison or ice. Leave them alone!

15. The Blob comes from space in search of humans. As it eats them, their skeletons remain visible in its massive, gelatinous bulk.

16. The Rhedosaurus, thawed from arctic ice by an atomic explosion, sacks New York City, until the military impales it with a nuclear dart. You’d think it would be use to such stuff by now!

17. Frankenstein is the personification of electrically reanimated body parts, though he doesn’t have much upstairs. What he needs is a bride!

18. The Fly is the story of two creatures – a house fly and a man, which accidentally come together in a teleportation machine and end up in a spider’s web. Help me!

19. The Creature from the Black Lagoon is an Amazonian “gillman” with a fondness for hot chicks. If they’d just let him do what he wants with them!

20. Mr. Hyde of Dr. Jekyll fame, this Victorian-era story presages the chemical or "drug culture" of the twentieth century. By taking a potion, Dr. Jekyll turns into the immoral Mr. Hyde, which leads to Jekyll’s ruin.

21. Gorgo is a 20-foot reptilian creature that lives on land and under the sea. Some jerks capture it for the circus – until momma shows up - she’s 200 feet tall and fairly pissed!

22. Pinhead, once human, and then disillusioned by human suffering, becomes a Cenobite, a supernatural, hedonistic, sadomasochistic Hellraiser who tortures people and steals souls.

23. Chucky is a child’s doll who, possessed by the Lakeshore Strangler, becomes, well, a horribly, foul-mouthed, pint-sized adult, eventually acquiring an equally bratty wife.

24. Jabba the Hut, the mountainous, toad-like creature with a snotty nose, is the evil gangster who captures Princess Leia, duels with Luke Skywalker and talks gibberish.

25. The Thing, essentially an alien vegetable in a humanlike form (at least in the original movie), crashes his flying saucer in the arctic, freezes, then gets thawed out and starts killing people for no particular reason.

Please leave a comment regarding your favorite monsters and any other pertinent subject matter.

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Comments 6 comments

k@ri profile image

k@ri 7 years ago from Sunny Southern California

Kosmo, We all need monsters, if only to show how "normal" we are! One of my favorites is the tooth fairy in Darkness Falls! Loved your hub!


monster fan 3 years ago

The only monsters I need are the ones that I like. My favorite ones are reptilian like my favorite dinosaur and beast of all: Tyrannosaurus.

The ones that I don't need are the humanoid and mammalian ones. My least favorite of all gigantic monsters is King Kong.


Kosmo profile image

Kosmo 3 years ago from California Author

Dude, King Kong kicks ass. You should reconsider your list of favorites. Later!


at Kosmo 3 years ago

thank you so much for hating King Kong. i salute you for that.


Kosmo profile image

Kosmo 3 years ago from California Author

I don't hate King Kong - I love him! And all the other wonderful imaginary monsters of the mind. Later!


at Kosmo 3 years ago

oops! i totally take it back thought. i thought that you hated that ape. but i was wrong.

however, i don't want you callin' him dude and forcin' your opinion down monster fan's throat. he will always hate king kong because of what he did to those reptiles, which are his and my favorite of all animals.

and who are you to decide who that monster fan should reconsider his favorites? he can pick whatever favorite monsters he wants. it's his right to. i mean, would you like it if he forces you to like and dislike whatever you want to like and dislike? if not, then leave him alone.

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