HORROR FROM CHANNEL 15
Real Name: Inapplicable
Identity/Class: Artificial being (1950s)
Occupation: Television prop
Group Membership: None
Enemies: Bruce Baxter (creator)
Known Relatives: None
Aliases: "Horror on Channel 15" (in story title)
Base of Operations: Mobile throughout Larkin, Iowa
First Appearance: Mystery Tales#1/4 (March, 1952)
Powers/Abilities: Originally built as a partially automated statue, the Horror was later brought to a semblance of life in an electrical accident.
Standing about eight feet tall, the Horror from Channel 15 had a hairy, humanoid form and four arms. Additionally, the Horror had the ability to cause heart failure in individuals within a close proximity, and could thereby literally frighten people to death.
History: (Mystery Tales#1/4) - In the small town of Larkin, Iowa (population: 462), Bruce Baxter set up a TV station. Wanting to compete with the horror shows in big cities, Baxter came up with the idea for a locally produced horror show -- "Terrorvisions" -- and set off to create a monstrous prop for the first show.
After building the hideous form of the monster, Baxter was showing it to some of the station executives, when the giant statue suddenly toppled over and fell into some electrical cables. Ordering the stage technicians to cut off the power, Baxter was relieved to see that the prop was relatively undamaged, with only a few scratches...although it was still warm from all the power it had sucked up.
The show went on as scheduled, and the broadcast was so frightening that even viewers in their homes couldn't stop trembling. But in the program's final scene, a change had unexpectedly occurred when the statue seemingly "killed" an actor (Baxter: "Hey! That last part wasn't in my script! Only the girl was supposed to be killed...not the guy playing the scientist!"). As the program concluded, Baxter ran over to the fallen actor and actress, and was shocked to learn that they were both really dead! The police were contacted, and the coroner later determined that the two had died from heart failure.
Convinced that the monsterous statue was responsible for the deaths, Baxter went to the editiorial offices of the Larkin Dispatch to get them to print his story, but everyone thought that Baxter had just staged everything for some kind of cheap publicity stunt.
Baxter returned to the TV studio, but heard from the frantic employees that the statue had walked out on its own power and killed everyone who got in its way. Baxter ran out of the studio to warn the town, and stopped by the police station, only to find dead bodies. Returning to the Larkin Dispatch, he only found more dead; Baxter himself would later lie dead on the steps of the Larkin Dispatch building, apparently the victim of his own creation.
As it wandered off, the Horror from Channel 15 left a path of death in its wake...
Comments: Created by an unknown writer and Pete Tumlinson.
Other examples of statues being brought to life by electricity include VanDoom's Monster and the Monsters of Bald Mountain, but considering the Horror's four-armed appearance, its apparently supernatural origin, and its ability to inspire fear, maybe the Lurking Unknown was somehow working behind the scenes.
And a BIG Thank You to The Horrors of It All
Profile by John Kaminski
The Horror from Channel 15 has no known connection to:
Bruce Baxter has no known connections to:
He was the founder and owner of WJV-TV (Channel 15) in Larkin, Iowa (which gained nationwide fame for being the smallest town in America with its own TV station).
To come up with an idea for a monster for his "Terrorvisions" program, Baxter went to all manner of places for inspiration -- haunted houses, magicians' dens, cemeteries -- but found nothing horrible or frightening enough in any of those places, so using his own vivid imagination, Baxter built a monster statue for his show.
After his creation was seemingly brought to life, Baxter ran to warn the townspeople, but was later a victim of his own creation.
Mystic#1/4, p3, pan2 (main image)
Mystery Tales#1/4 (March, 1952) - Pete Tumlinson (artist)
Last updated: 10/28/06
Any Additions/Corrections? please let me know.
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