Horror: A study on Cliver Barker part 17, Human remains.
Summary: Human Remains tells the story of Gavin, a male prostitute that finds himself being stalked by a doppelganger. The story begins with him being picked up by a male client and taken back to an apartment. There he discovers a human-sized statue in the tub. The statue comes alive and begins to follow Gavin, slowly adapting his habits and physical features. The story ends with Gavin leaving town, letting his doppelganger take over his identity.
Notes: This story is really amazing; thematically, horror-wise, and even the imagery-wise this story is just breath-taking.
I wanted to highlight a passage I found that has to be the most original and stunning piece of imagery I've read from Clive Barker yet.
I've never thought about comparing the glow at the end of a cigarette to a firefly. It had to be one of best pieces of Imagery I've read this study. I know some people don't find Imagery as interesting as I do, but when an author pushes language to its maximum, there is a certain pleasure I gain from reading that.
Thematically this story is very similar to the concept of an android. As the story progresses, the statue becomes more human in thought and nature. Gavin on the other hand, through his drug use, becomes more statue like (towards the end he doesn't eat, sleep, or even cry at his father's tombstone.)
Horror-wise: We never truly come to understand the nature of the doppelganger statue. When Gavin and it talk, the statue claims that it does not understand why its true nature, and while it does not believe to be the only member of its kind to exist, it has never met another one like itself.
I thought this was an interesting concept. To exist, and know that others like yourself exist, but to never have met them. What makes this idea interesting to me is that the statue, which is clearly a supernatural being, knows that there are things out there that it does understand. This central idea -things unknown to even the unknown- is something I might add into my future works.
The true nature of Horror is to show something terrifying (like a monster) but never explaining it. If you want to create a horrifying story? Create a scene -like one with a bunch of mutilated bodies or some object that should not be there but is- and never explain how it happened or why.
This concludes the first book by Clive Barker: Books of Blood volumes 1-3. I will be looking at his next book: Books of Blood Volume 4-6 next.
If you have any thoughts of questions, please leave a like or comment.
P.S My next post will be a 'What we have learned so far post.'
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