Category Archives: Werewolves

Fantasy Monsters: Vampires vs. Werewolves—Who Is Scarier?

So we return to the age-old question of vampires and werewolves. I’ve previously opined on the question of which one would win in a fight against the other (for those who don’t know, I went with the werewolf… barring certain conditions). Now, I want to look at the question from a human perspective: which one is scarier? One on one, a human is dead either way—or perhaps even cursed from the conflict—but which gives the human being more cause for alarm?

 

A superficial treatment that examines the creatures in their traditional forms will probably conclude that the werewolf is scarier. The traditional vampire looks basically human; perhaps, he is a little pale, and his teeth are a little overly large, but he can walk among us without provoking a hue and cry or any other extraordinary response. The werewolf, however, in her true form is a terrible beast to behold: claws, fangs, fur, and fury. It is a snarling beast without control or conscience. As such, it will engender the most profound terror in its victims before it kills.

 

But… does the story end there? Is the mundane appearance of the vampire actually a disadvantage here? The key point with the vampire is that he is a thinking foe. The werewolf, in her true form, is just a savage creature that will rip you to pieces—true this will be terrifying to experience, but only for a moment. The vampire can plot against you; he can seduce you; he can wrap you in the threads of his machinations, like a spider ensnares a fly—slowly, with the horror mounting moment to moment, until you realize there is no escape, and you have lost your humanity and your soul to a creature whose bite will sentence you to hell.

 

The vampire also has the option of being as scary as the werewolf, or, at least, close to it. The traditional vampire can take the form of a wolf if he wants (which is not necessarily as intimidating as a walking wolf-man, but it can be a bit unnerving nonetheless). He can take the form of mist, so when you are snooping around in the mist-shrouded halls of his castle, you will have every reason to be alarmed. Although there are more ways to kill a vampire than there are a werewolf, the vampire has more abilities. As stated above he can assume the form of wolf or mist (and bat), but he can also mesmerize his human victims and control the weather. True, he has more weaknesses than a werewolf, but those just serve to make him more intriguing.

 

A vampire has more mobility, as well. The original vampire myths allowed them to move about during the day. Regardless, a vampire is a vampire every day of its existence; a werewolf is only a werewolf on the night of a full moon.

 

So, if you are looking for cheap terror, then a werewolf is more frightening. But if you are looking for a deep, more profound horror that takes you in its fist and crushes the life from you, ever so slowly—the vampire is the way to go.

Fantasy Monster Fight: Vampires vs. Werewolves

All right. This is a completely silly post which has no bearing on the real world, or on literary criticism, or on whatever else, but I’m in an odd mood.

 

Some people have fantasy football (do people still do that these days?); I’ve got my fantasy monster fight. The question before me is: who would win in a fight? A vampire? Or a werewolf? Whole book series and movies have been written on this topic. In the Underworld movie series, for example, vampires and werewolves are in a state of perpetual warfare. And in the Twilight books… uh, I really don’t know because I refuse to read them, but I understand that there is a love triangle involving a human, a werewolf, and a vampire. Re-reading that, that sounds like the beginning of a bad joke. “A human, a werewolf, and a vampire enter a bar…”

 

Anyway, if a vampire and a werewolf came to blows, who would win? For those of us geeky gamers who used to play AD&D, the winner is obviously the vampire. Just look at the creatures’ stats in the Monster Manual. But trying to evaluate the match through literature is a little bit more difficult. One can only assess the situation by evaluating strengths and weaknesses.

 

Both vampires and werewolves are supernaturally strong. Both tend to be on the prowl or at their peak strength during night time hours. One on one against the typical human, the typical human doesn’t stand a chance. Both vampires and werewolves procreate by biting humans. And typically such transformations are a one way deal. What about weaknesses?

 

As far as humans are concerned, the only way to kill a werewolf is with a silver bullet. And I suppose fire works as well. The ways to kill a vampire, depending upon which particular myth you are dealing with, include: wooden stakes through the heart, decapitation, immersion in running water, sunlight, a silver bullet, and holy water. And I don’t think they are fond of fire either. The vampire also has several other weaknesses, although none of them are fatal. These include invitations, garlic, and roses. Clearly, if one considers weaknesses alone, the werewolf has the advantage. At least, it is clear that a human will find it more difficult to kill a werewolf than a vampire.

 

The vampire, however, does have two more important advantages: it can fly (or transform into a bat) and it always retains a human-like intelligence. Since it is intelligent, a vampire is more likely to seek out a gun and silver bullet if it is about to face a werewolf than vice versa. If one nixes the transforming into a bat bit, and simply gives the vampire the power of flight with a gun and several silver bullets, the vampire’s going to win quite easily. Actually, unless one grants the werewolf the ability to harm the vampire with its claws and bite, the vampire will always have the advantage of intellect over animalistic brawn. It should win pretty much every confrontation on those grounds: a snarling, drooling werewolf simply won’t think to use a wooden stake or a bowie knife. But if the vampire and werewolf can both harm each other with their respective natural weapons, all bets are off.

 

Regardless, as far as humans are concerned: it is better to fight a vampire. You have more options to kill, repel, or, at the very least, escape from a vampire than you do a werewolf. So, remember that the next time you are out wandering through a graveyard beneath a full moon. Go with the guy clawing his way out of the ground rather than the strange beastie howling at the moon.

Movie Review: The Howling, Reborn

I was never a huge fan of the Howling film series when it came out—what was that, the 80’s maybe? There was one exception, though, I think it was “Howling Five,” set in a castle where a werewolf was systematically killing off a group of guests, or something like that. That was probably one of the more suspenseful and better werewolf movies I’ve ever seen. Anyway, on a kind of spur of the moment type thing, a friend and I sat down to watch the movie “The Howling, Reborn” the other night.

 

“The Howling, Reborn” tells the story of Will Kidman, a young teenager soon to graduate from High School. Suffering the usual bullies and whatnot from his school, Will earns particular ire for his interest in classmate Eliana Wynter. But things rapidly take a turn for the worse, and before he knows it, he is on his way to becoming a werewolf and he and Eliana are pitted against a growing army of such creatures intent upon wreaking horrible destruction upon humanity. And only the two love-struck high-schoolers can stop them.

 

Overall, I thought the storyline was decent. It held me interested for most of the movie. It wasn’t exceptional, by any means, but original enough with a few clever surprises here and there to make it worthwhile. The special effects, however, were pretty lame. The werewolves looked like 80’s Halloween costumes. A far cry from say the more recent “The Wolfman” movie where the transformations were chillingly realistic.

 

Anyway, if you can put with the cheesy special effects and you are into werewolves, you might enjoy the movie. I’ll give it three out of five stars.