Michael Played by: Skip Martin
Film(s): Vampire Circus (1972)
The most off-the-wall character in Hammer's vampire oddity, which is saying something. Skip Martin's Michael is a dwarf clown, almost prominent enough to qualify as ringmaster. Part of his act is pulling his own face off, and his laugh is the stuff of nightmares.
608 Edwina Hyde Played by: Martine Beswick
Film(s): Dr Jekyll and Sister Hyde (1971)
At a time when Hammer were looking to up the sex quotient of pretty much all their movies, this seemed like the apotheosis. Dr. Jekyll (Ralph Bates) laces a potion with female hormones and transforms into the luscious Martine Beswick... who promptly develops a crush on the brother of Jekyll's lady love. Utterly bonkers, but Beswick sells the craziness with sultry relish.
Yuki Played by: Keiko Kishi
Film(s): Kwaidan (1965)
She's white-faced, has long dark hair and runs around being mega-creepy... It's not hard to see the impact that Keiko Kishi's ghost-woman, the unforgettable star of The Woman Of The Snow, the second part of Masaki Kobayashi's classic 1965 anthology, had on Japanese cinema.
Fiona Played by: Emma Fryer
Film(s): Kill List (2011)
Emma Fryer is spooky enough when she's in TV comedy Phone Shop. But Ben Wheatley put her in an actual horror film, as a vengeful pagan with designs on destroying Neil Maskell's life, and was quite possibly onto something. We always check behind our bathroom mirrors now.
DJ Played by: Jason Isaacs
Film(s): Event Horizon (1997)
Hello to Jason Isaacs! As the trusty trauma doctor on board the good ship Lewis And Clark and, later, the evil ship Event Horizon, Isaacs has tons of deadpan fun with nonsense Latin dialogue filled with foreboding. What the hell a trauma doctor in the 21st century is doing with a working knowledge of Latin is anyone's guess, but there you go.
Ken The Magician Played by: David Copperfield
Film(s): Terror Train (1980)
Your eyes are not deceiving you. That is David Copperfield - big-haired, snake-hipped master of the mystic - making an astonishing big-screen debut as the magician hired to provide entertainment for a group of teens who have, somewhat improbably, hired a train for a costume party, only for a masked killer to tag along and provide his own entertainment. With all the charisma of Martin Daniels' assistant, Ken wows the kids with his sleight of hand, hits on Jamie Lee Curtis in an ultra-creepy fashion, and winds up being put out of commission by the age-old sword-through-the-head trick. Gets 'em every time.
Horace Played by: Brent Chalem
Film(s): The Monster Squad (1987)
In hands other than Fred Dekker's (and his co-writer, one Shane Black), The Monster Squad could have been just a cheap rip-off of The Goonies. In hands other than Brent Chalem's, Horace - aka Fat Kid - could have been just another rip-off of the ebullient Chunk. But Chalem imbues Horace with a spunk all of his own, and it doesn't hurt that he gets the film's most memorable moments, blowing away the Creature from the Black Lagoon with a shotgun and, of course, kicking the Wolfman in the nards. Tragically, Chalem died of pneumonia in 1997. He was just 22.
602 The Nazi Zombies Played by: Various
Film(s): An American Werewolf In London (1981)
The stuff of nightmares, both in the film and IRL (as the kids say). When David (David Naughton) falls asleep, his gloriously day-glo vision of life with his family is interrupted by a squadron of Nazi zombies who machine-gun everything he loves, and then slit his throat. But phew, it was all a drea - oh God, no, now they're back, stabbing Jenny Agutt... phew, it was all a dream. Still, they're probably the worst screen Nazis of all time, and it's safe to say that they've got pretty stiff competition.
La Femme Played by: Béatrice Dalle
Film(s): Inside (2007)
Hell hath no fury like a Béatrice Dalle with a pair of scissors, as she spends Christmas Eve pursuing poor pregnant Alysson Paradis around her home with the intent on cutting her baby out of her womb. Betty Blue becomes Betty Red. Lots of red.
Peter Loew Played by: Nicolas Cage
Film(s): Vampire's Kiss (1988)
A young Nic Cage shows that he was already an enemy of restaint, and willing to take risks that few other actors would, in Robert Bierman's bizarro horror comedy about an ad exec who's convinced that he's turning into a vampire. Yes, Cage eats a cockroach, but there's much more here: the hair, the wild and crazy stare, the world-class freakouts. Altogether now: "A! B! C! D! E!" (repeat until fade)
Channard Played by: Kenneth Cranham
Film(s): Hellbound: Hellraiser II (1988)
One of the doyens of British acting, Kenneth Cranham - then best known for TV's Shine On Harvey Moon - wound up as a randy psychiatrist who is turned into a barking mad Cenobite. The doctor is out. Of his gourd.
F.W. Colquhon Played by: Robert Carlyle
Film(s): Ravenous (1999)
Inspired by real-life people-eater Alfred Packer, Robert Carlyle boils up a ratty Begbie as the sinister, pointy-hatted 1840s murderer, rendered invincible by a taste for stew a la longpig. Well, half-invincible: he gets eaten by a bear-trap.
Horace Pinker Played by: Mitch Pileggi
Film(s): Shocker (1989)
The film lives up to its name, which meant that Wes Craven's, erm, craven attempt to create a new Freddy died on its arse. But with the benefit of hindsight, Mitch Pileggi's turn as a serial killer who resurrects himself by plugging into the mains is a hammy delight.
M.A.R.K. 13 Played by: n/a
Film(s): Hardware (1990)
Terminator? Schmerminator. Richard Stanley's sci-fi stars a psycho- bot programmed for human genocide and able to self-reassemble at will. Killer move: death-by-chopping-you-in-half.
Madman Played by: Paul Ehlers
Film(s): Madman (1982)
One of the more interesting of the myriad Jason/Michael Myers knock-offs, Madman is a terrifying barefooted tramp who snarls and slashes his way through a camp of counsellors and kids in Joe Giannone's little-seen shocker. Don't hide in a fridge to avoid him: look at the size of him, it's the first place he'd look.
594 Arkin Played by: Josh Stewart
Film(s): The Collection (2012), The Collector (2009)
It's rare that horror movie heroes live to fight another day. Rarer, still, that they last longer than ten minutes in the sequel. But Josh Stewart's anti-hero, Arkin, is an exception to the rule in Marcus Dunstan's wannabe franchise. A tough, gritty thief who finds his survival skills, and morality, tested by exposure to the eponymous evil genius, he's an intriguing and nuanced hero; more than a match for The Collector.
Buss Played by: Mai Charoenpura
Film(s): The Meat-Grinder (2009)
Got the guts? In Buss, this Thai-flavoured torture prawn (sorry) showcases a horror rarity: a sympathetic cannibal, whose cracked mental state leads to meat-hooking the customers of her noodle store. Stay well away from the dumplings.
Pinbacker Played by: Mark Strong
Film(s): Sunshine (2007)
Mark Strong's demented astronaut copped a lot of flak for taking Danny Boyle's beautifully dreamy, existential sci-fi thriller into standard stalk'n'slash territory. But, now the space dust has had time to settle, Pinbacker looms large in the memory as a neat, gruesome Garland/Boyle twist on the Michael Myers/Jason archetype. In fact, with the flesh flayed from his bones by exposure to the sunlight, plus his superhuman strength, penchant for surgical torture tools and, of course, that name, he's more openly a tribute to Hellraiser's Pinhead (with, yes, a nod to Dark Star's Pinback too), and he's terrifyingly played by Strong.
Kathoga Played by: Brian Steele, Gary Hecker (voice)
Film(s): The Relic (1997)
Cross a crocodile with a walrus and a bag of teeth, pop a cheeky Mohican on top, and you've got this Stan Winston-designed Latino lizard god, rampaging through a Chicago museum, chomping heads like a prehistoric Pac-Man.