Cannibalism is one of the few cultural taboos that still manages to inspire revulsion and horror across all strata of society. It conjures to mind either the necessity for dire survivalism or an individual who has degenerated into complete and utter depravity. Perhaps, this is why whenever it arises as a motif in thrillers and horror novels, it makes for a memorable, if squeamish, read.
In his first novel, Consumed, filmmaker David Cronenberg revisits the body horror themes he explored in such films as Videodrome and Dead Ringers; disturbing yet accomplished in equal measure, the novel offers further proof of Cronenberg’s mastery in the cerebral grotesque. Chris Novak's Brood shares a title (of sorts) with one of Cronenberg’s earlier films and is a follow-up to his earlier chiller Breed. In this installment, Adam and Alice, the children born in the first novel, fear they may have inherited their parents’ peculiar (and savage) appetites.
Thomas Harris's huge bestseller The Silence of the Lambs didn’t introduce the character Hannibal the Cannibal, but the feature fillm adaptation with Anthony Hopkins’ Oscar winning performance, made him a byword for charming, sadistic evil. Christian Bale, similiarly put his own impression on Patrick Bateman, the yuppie serial killer narrator of American Psycho by Bret Easton Ellis.
Revenge and meat pies make up the menu at the dinner party denouement in Shakespeare's first tragedy, Titus Andronicus, which was one of the playwright’s most popular plays in his own time(now, not so much). Finally, there is The String of Pearls by James Malcolm Rymer, the original penny dreadful account of Sweeny Todd, the Demon Barber of Fleet Street.
Outer Circle (left to right from 1 o’clock position): Build, Cody Hudson, Siggi Eggertson, Chad Kouri, Ryan Todd, Yehteh, Matt Chase, Cocolia, Mario Hugo, Craig & Karl, Triboro, Adam Garcia.
Inner Circle (left to right from 12 o’clock position): Eight Hour Day, Aaron Draplin, Tim Boelaars, Jolby & Friends, 2x Elliott, Mikey Burton, Hey, Hort, Stout, Always With Honor, Matthew Hollister, Non-Format.