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October 31, 2006

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Dale Hazelton

Too-briefly mentioned in the horror host listings link, Canadas Billy Van had a great kids show that ran in syndication for years, "The Hilarious House of Frightenstein" I remember it for the Laugh-In style one-liners that they managed to snag Vincent Price to deliver, and for the psychedelic music video bits. It was much too frightening and smart for a kids show, though. I also recall seeing him bouncing around early 70s variety shows with Sonny and Cher and the Hudson Brothers, and on Canadian charades staple "Party Game." Check out:

http://www.frightenstein.com

Nice MP3 grab:
http://www.frightenstein.com/mp3/Frightenstein-Main_Intro_and_Music.mp3

James

There was a terrific book published on Ghoulardi a couple of years ago. Reading it, you learn that the show was quite subversive for its time, and was a low priority for WJW (the Cleveland network) at first, the station just wanted to fill some airtime. The best culture happens in the margins (or it seems that way sometimes). Besides Pere Ubu, Ghoulardi was a huge influence on the Cramps, who were also from Ohio.

WmMBerger

Thanks for the wonderfully comprehensive article—and Happy Halloween.

In the mid-to-late 70s, when I was in my early teens, my Dad was PD at WPLJ (formerly WABC-FM), where Zacherle still did a show. Every Halloween, programming would throw out the rules and let Zach do his horror thing and play whatever records he chose. I was fortunate enough to get to know Zach a little bit, and actually sat in on one of these broadcasts where he played early Pink Floyd and The Dead Boys, among other things. "Billy, have you ever heard Ummagumma? Ooooo this is a great one!"

He also gave me copies of his singles "Dinner With Drac" and "Coolest Little Monster". Zach was and is an ultimate hep cat with a true generosity of spirit.

Krys O.

Today's Newark Star-Ledger has a feature on Zacherle who's still around at age 88. He looks pretty damn good...for a COOL GHOUL, HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!

James

Speaking of Zacherle, does anyone else remember the very (very!) brief period in the late 80's when he hosted horror movies on Saturday afternoons on WPIX (channel 11) in New York? He did the whole bit with performing in sketches between the movies and the commercial breaks, and as a kid I thought it was terrific ('course, I couldn't know then that the guy had been doing this stuff for years). But for whatever reason, WPIX didn't broadcast the show for very long.

On the DJ front, I also remember Zacherle doing a few fill-in shows for WNEW in its last days as a classic rock station, in the early 90's, including a "theme" show where he broadcasted as if it was 1968 (insert your own joke about the classic rock format). He did a funny monologue at one point, about why he thought the Beatles would last as a band for decades, and the Rolling Stones would self-destruct and break up by 1970.

vjb2

The latest in the lineage from Vampira to Elvira is San Francisco-based Ms. Monster (and her Monster Melons) in Hel On Ice. She hosts live presentations of classic horror flicks and has a late night show. The tradition lives!

And what, no Troma Girls?

lee

how about COUNT FLOYD portrayed by joe flaherty on second city tv? verrrrrry scaaaary! moo hoo wah ha ha ha

fred

Currently a resident of Denver, they DID have a horror host around that period of the early 1980s. I've met him! At Little Fyodor's house once!

jeffersonic

Jesusgod o' christ almighty don't forget the original Svengoolie (Jerry G. Bishop) and Zelda from Chicago

Chris R,

We in Philadelphia were truly blessed - in between Zacherle & Stella we had a fellow for a number of years on (if I recall correctly) WPHL-TV, a UHF station, channel 17, named Dr. Shock who did the Creature Double Feature on Saturday afternoons in the 70s.

Mr. Lobo of Cinema Insomnia

Great horror host article! You're right about Vampira being #1...she's the mother of us all! Of course, you can't include everybody--there are so many greats! All very important to the select and often regional viewers they serve. Thanks again!

Yet another nationally syndicated TV horror host,
Mr. Lobo

Kurt

I was raised on the TV Horror Horror hosts, but once off to college, I discovered their frightful forefathers... the old radio Horror hosts! There was The Whistler, and The Mysterious Traveler, and Raymond from The Inner Sanctum, just to name a few. If you liked the TV horror hosts, you'll get a big kick out of these guys as well... and very much in the tradition of WFMU. Check out www.RadioHorrorHosts.com for their history, and MP3s of all the greats. You'll see how the TV folks were inspired by them (not to mention EC comics)!

John Stanley

Wanted you to be among the very first to know that I WAS A TV HORROR HOST
was introduced at the recent San Francisco Wondercon. It's my 556-photo, 210-page book about
the world of horror hosting and includes histories and photos galore of the
famous Bob Wilkins
and myself in an 8 x 11 format. It will sell only through me, not in retail
book stores, for $25 plus $5 for tax, postage and handling. It is the definitive book
for any Creature Features fan with the whole story of how the San
Francisco-Bay Area Saturday night horror series (1971-1984) got started and
how Bob and I differed in our handling of the monster-less role.
It also has my exclusive interviews with ARNOLD SCHWARZENEGGER (putting
the make on a beautiful cocktail waitress), LEONARD NIMOY (I was one of the
first to meet him and GENE RODDENBERRY before STAR TREK premiered), WILLIAM
SHATNER, VINCENT PRICE, THE "FACELESS" STAR WARS CHARACTERS, RAY BRADBURY, ROBERT
BLOCH, LUCILLE BALL (without her, no STAR TREK), GEORGE ROMERO (he of the
WALKING DEAD), ELVIRA, GHOULARDI, ZACHERLEY, JOE BOB BRIGGS, SARA KARLOFF,
WILLIAM CASTLE, RAY HARRYHAUSEN AND MANY OTHER HORROR SCI-FI ICONS OF THE
PAST CENTURY. MANY PHOTOS ARE EXCLUSIVES TAKEN ON THE C.F. SET. Send check or money order to JOHN STANLEY,
1082 GRAND TETON DRIVE, PACIFICA, CA 94044. Warmest Regards, John Stanley

Patrick

Joe Flaherty as Count Floyd on SCTV was hilarious. And John Candy and Eugene Levy doing "Dr. Tongue's 3D House of Pancakes."

DeWayne(FilmFreak)

ELVIRA - Mistress of The Dark is by far the sexiest looking horror host in the world! I really enjoyed watching TV back in those days and I even had a poster of her. Now that is dedication!

DeWayne(FilmFreak)
MovieDownloadMatrix.com
Horror Movie Critic with Fangs!


john stanley

Readers: The first edition of I WAS A TV HORROR HOST has sold out. A second edition with endorsements from RAY BRADBURY, TOM HANKS, ROGER CORMAN, ELVIRA, JOE BOB BRIGGS and SARA KARLOFF is now going into bookstores for just $20. That's 208 pages and 559 photographs to showcase my exclusive interviews with LEONARD NIMOAY, VINCENT PRICE, RAY HARRYHAUSEN, ROBERT BLOCH, ARNOLD SCHWARZENEGGER and other sci-fi and horror icons. Check out www.stanleybooks.net to order via PayPal. I'll sign to the buyer. --John Stanley

Richard

There's a nice documentary about horror hosts - "American Scary" (www.americanscary.com) - which made its New York area debut at the Coney Island Film Festival this past weekend.

Thanks to cable and the Internet, horror hosting is alive and well.... if a bit under the radar....

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