All moviegoing human beings go through a horror fixation at some point, and part of that ride is discovering that scary movies feature pleeeeenty of hot men. Sure, it’s mostly the female babysitters and big-breasted sorority girls who steal most of the screen time, but tons of notable horror flicks feature hunks in key roles. And in key death sequences. Which is somehow therapeutic to me. Don’t ask.
In honor of October’s shadowy pall, here are the 10 greatest hunks of horror. Pay attention, because some of these gents may pop up again in our Best Movie Ever column this month.
10. Rider Strong, Cabin Fever
Cabin Fever is so gross, but so righteously bizarre. Part of its appeal is the eminently lovable Rider Strong, the Boy Meets World alum who rents a cabin in the woods with his idiotic friends and suffers the wrath of a disgusting virus. But before the bloody bombast takes over, we get a few nice shots of Rider’s soft, sexy physique and melancholic stare. Ben Savage, you wish you had this.
9. Rod Taylor, The Birds
To me, Rod Taylor was the no-nonsense version of Cary Grant. He had the same tawny exterior, but his energy was pure mensch and his speaking voice is just heavenly. (It’s no surprise that he voiced the valorous Pongo in 101 Dalmatians.) In The Birds, he’s the suave leading man whose mother doesn’t quite tolerate his socialite girlfriend Melanie, but that doesn’t matter because they all might be pecked to death. Lesson: Sometimes it takes a man of great posture to break the necks of rogue pigeons.
8. Richard Denning, The Creature from the Black Lagoon
The Affair to Remember thespian is one of my favorite ’50s blonds (take that, Kim Novak!), and you can see that his enviable bone structure and hot chest are enough to stun most grotto creatures. Richard Carlson, you’re not so bad either.
7. Skeet Ulrich, Scream
His stare was mighty and his bangs looked like a bouquet of parentheses. Skeet Ulrich’s austere visage is both overwrought and damn frightening, which is the perfect combination for a movie that’s both arch and horrifying. He makes the act of licking red corn syrup off your fingers seem like a tolerable XTube genre.