Just in time for a Pandemic Thanksgiving, it’s time to talk food-themed horror! There exists a special and not often seen niche in the horror genre, and these films range from throwaway light and silly movies to unforgettable acts of disgusting digestive distress. You might not want to eat before watching these movies.
If you’ve learned anything about The Scariest Things Podcast, you’ll know we like to keep things topical. With Thanksgiving coming up, we thought, “Hey, let’s do food-themed horror!” This was a hard list, but we found some hidden treasures. Many of these gastronomical horror shows lean towards artistic and abstract themes.
Usually, Food in itself isn’t scary.
Starvation is scary. Gluttony and Power is scary. Rot, decay, and pestilence can be scary. Poison is scary. And yeah, for many people, liver and onions is scary. C’mon kid! Eat it!
Food horror also can delve into the disgusting. What goes in, must come out. And what comes out usually isn’t pleasant. It’s all part of the natural process of things, right? Well, what is so tasty on one side is nasty on the other. Fun with digestion! Body horror, indeed.
Think food can’t be scary (or gross)? Consider these moments:
- Brundlefly barfing up his meal and slurping it back up in The Fly.
- Regan spewing pea soup vomit all over the place in The Exorcist.
- The wriggling (and bleeding) game hens in Eraserhead.
- Christine finding an eyeball in her cake in Drag Me to Hell.
- Mr. Creosote in The Meaning of Life. (Just a wafer-thin mint!)
- The unfortunate demise of the gluttony victim in Se7en.
- The final dish served in The Cook, The Thief, His Wife, and Her Lover.
- The nasty Pizza in A Nightmare on Elm Street 4:The Dream Master
Oh, those were all really powerful scenes! But for this exercise, we took it a step further and tried to find movies that thematically built their whole films around a food premise. It wasn’t easy. Remarkably, we managed to do this without having to go heavy on the cannibal films. (Though, to be honest, there is a bit of that here.) And as a fair warning, we’re certainly not recommending all the movies we’re going to talk about in Episode 112, but even some not-so-enjoyable food-horror films are worth discussing, no matter how disgusting.
So, break out the fine silver and cloth napkins, and get ready to gorge on the vomitous goodness that is Edible Horror!