A monster is a type of fictional creature found in horror, fantasy, science fiction, folklore, mythology and religion. Monsters are very often depicted as dangerous and aggressive with a strange, grotesque appearance that causes terror and fear. Monsters usually resemble bizarre, deformed, otherworldly and/or mutated animals or entirely unique creatures of varying sizes, but may also take a human form, such as mutants, ghosts and spirits, zombies or cannibals, among other things. They may or may not have supernatural powers, but are usually capable of killing or causing some form of destruction, threatening the social or moral order of the human world in the process.
Monsters pre-date written history, and the academic study of the particular cultural notions expressed in a society's ideas of monsters is known as monstrophy. Monsters have appeared in literature and in feature-length films. Well-known monsters in fiction include dragons, gnomes, centaurs, werewolves, fearsome critters, dinosaurs, pterosaurs, snails, lions, and tigers.
- ...they defiled...they begot giants and monsters...they begot, and, behold, all the earth was corrupted...with its blood and by the hand of...giant's which did not suffice for them and...and they were seeking to devour many...the monsters attacked it.
- ...flesh...all...monsters...will be...they would arise...lacking in true knowledge...because... the earth grew corrupt...mighty...they were considering...from the angels upon ...in the end it will perish and die...they caused great corruption in the earth...this did not suffice to...they will be...
- What is a saint? A saint is someone who has achieved a remote human possibility. It is impossible to say what that possibility is. I think it has something to do with the energy of love. Contact with this energy results in the exercise of a kind of balance in the chaos of existence. A saint does not dissolve the chaos; if he did the world would have changed long ago. I do not think that a saint dissolves the chaos even for himself, for there is something arrogant and warlike in the notion of a man setting the universe in order. It is a kind of balance that is his glory. He rides the drifts like an escaped ski. His course is the caress of the hill. His track is a drawing of the snow in a moment of its particular arrangement with wind and rock. Something in him so loves the world that he gives himself to the laws of gravity and chance. Far from flying with the angels, he traces with the fidelity of a seismograph needle the state of the solid bloody landscape. His house is dangerous and finite, but he is at home in the world. He can love the shape of human beings, the fine and twisted shapes of the heart. It is good to have among us such men, such balancing monsters of love.
- Dr. Ludwig Frankenstein: You're a cunning fellow Ygor. Do you think I would put your sly and sinister brain into the body of a giant? That would be a monster indeed. You will do as I tell you or I will not be responsible for the consequences.
- Scott Darling, The Ghost of Frankenstein, 1942.
- I always enjoyed doing monster books. Monster books gave me the opportunity to draw things out of the ordinary. Monster books were a challenge — what kind of monster would fascinate people? I couldn’t draw anything that was too outlandish or too horrible. I never did that. What I did draw was something intriguing. There was something about this monster that you could live with. If you saw him you wouldn’t faint dead away. There was nothing disgusting in his demeanor. There was nothing about him that repelled you. My monsters were lovable monsters.
- Kilaak Queen: Ghidorah is a space monster. The monsters from Earth cannot win. I will get in touch with you, when you feel like giving up.
- Takeshi Kimura, Destroy All Monsters, (1968).
- Simply put, since the dawn of civilization, our collective imagination has transformed our fears into monsters. Once that happened, it was inevitable for monsters to get incorporated into our stories. Of course, our collective fears changed as human civilization progressed. Humans were no longer afraid of the forest or the seas. Instead, they became afraid of other things, and that meant they created new monsters to replace the ones that no longer frightened them. For instance, Grendel represents the distinct medieval fear of the lower classes rising up against the aristocracy. It's no coincidence that the Transylvanian Count Dracula was created during the victorian era when the English feared an invasion from Europe.
- Stan Lee's How To Draw Superheroes, by Stan Lee; co-written by Danny Fingeroth, Keith Dallas and Robert Sodaro, Waston-Guptill Publications New York, (2013), ch. 8 “Monsters”, pp. 139-140.
- Imagine different ways to overcome a monster other than just fisticuffs and violence. For instance, when the Fantastic Four first met the shape-shifting alien skrulls, the story could have easily been resolved by having the four superheroes tear apart the Skrull's invading spaceship. Instead, the Fantastic Four resorted to deception: By being shown pictures from comic books, the Skrulls were led to believe they would be slaughtered if they dared invade Earth. For good measure, Mr. Fantastic hypnotized the remaining Skrulls into believing they were really cows. Thus, the fantastic Four demonstrated their ingenuity and resourcefulness. Similarly, when Spider-Man created an antidote that turned the Lizard back into Dr. Connors, he demonstrated both his scientific acumen and his compassion for Dr. Connors's situation. Again, the crucial thing to remember is that your superhero embodies several different exceptional qualities, and the manner in which your superhero defeats a monster tells the reader which of these qualities are paramount.
And besides, physical strength alone won't work against some monsters, like vampires. Sure, you can drive a stake through a vampire's heart to take him out of commission but most superheroes refrain from resorting to that kind of violence... even against the undead! Again, you must imagine other means of prevailing against the monster.
- Stan Lee's How To Draw Superheroes, by Stan Lee, co written by Danny Fingeroth, Keith Dallas and Robert Sodaro, Waston-Guptill Publications New York, (2013) ch.8 “Monsters”, p. 140.
- As a survival mechanism, fear can help us avoid dangerous situations or prepare us for hostile confrontations. But being scared all the time isn't healthy. It can lead to panic or emotional breakdowns. So why in the world would we even want to have monsters as part of our popular entertainment? Why read (or write) stories about monsters if we know it will ultimately make us unnecessarily experience an emotion that isn't pleasant? To come back to Godzilla, why would the Japanese want to be reminded of the horror of Hiroshima and Nagasaki? Well, to answer those questions, let's consider the ancient Greek concept of Catharsis.
- Stan Lee's How To Draw Superheroes, by Stan Lee; co-written by Danny Fingeroth, Keith Dallas and Robert Sodaro, Waston-Guptill Publications New York, (2013), ch. 8, “Monsters”, p. 140.
- I tried to talk. I want you to remember that. I tried to reach out. I tried to understand you, but I think you understand us perfectly. I think that you just don't care. And I don't know whether you're here to invade, infiltrate or just replace us. I don't suppose it really matters now. You are monsters! That is the role you seem determined to play! So, it seems that I must play mine: the man that stops the monsters. I'm sending you back to your own dimension. Who knows, some of you may even survive the trip. And if you do, remember this: You are not welcome here! This plane is protected! I am The Doctor, and I name you "the Boneless"!
- He who fights with monsters should look to it that he himself does not become a monster. And if you gaze long into an abyss, the abyss also gazes into you.
- Hateful day when I received life!' I exclaimed in agony. 'Accursed creator! Why did you form a monster so hideous that even you turned from me in disgust? God, in pity, made man beautiful and alluring, after his own image; but my form is a filthy type of yours, more horrid even from the very resemlance. Satan had his companions, fellow-devils, to admire and encourage him; but I am solitary and abhorred.
- The female monster is certainly no deadlier than the male, but she is different. She is a sucking, strangling, trapping creature.
- J.R.R. Tolkien "JRR Tolkien: 'Film my books? It's easier to film The Odyssey'", by Charlotte and Denis Plimmer , (19 April 2016),
- Postremo nemo aegrotus quidquam somniat tam infandum, quod non aliquis dicat philosophus.
- No sick man's monstrous dream can be so wild that some philosopher won't say it's true.
- Marcus Terentius Varro Eumenides, fragment 6, from Saturae Menippeae; translation from J. Wight Duff Roman Satire: Its Outlook on Social Life (Hamden, Conn.: Archon Books, 1964) p. 90.
- Monkrum horrendum, informe, ingens, cui lumen ademptum.
- I think the evidence will show that this is a sad case. There are no monsters here.
- George Zimmerman's defense attorney Don West's opening remarks; as quoted in "George Zimmerman’s lawyer opens with claim Trayvon Martin attacked his client: ‘There are no monkeys here’" Lisa Lucas, Corky Seimas, New York Daily News, Monday, (June 24, 2013).
- I don't want to kill Ultron. He's unique. And he's in pain. But that pain will roll over the Earth. So he must be destroyed — every form he's built, every trace of his presence on the 'net. We have to act now, and not one of us can do it without the other. Maybe I am a monster … I don't think I would know if I were one. I'm not what you are, and not what you intended. So there may be no way to make you trust me. [casually hands Thor his hammer Mjöllnir ] But we need to go.
- The monster’s power is one of sexual difference from the normal male. In this difference he is remarkably like the woman in the eyes of the traumatized male: a biological freak with impossible and threatening appetites that suggest a frightening potency precisely where the normal male would perceive a lack.
- Linda Williams "When the woman looks"
- Wolverine: What?
- Idie: That's why they want to kill us. You can't blame them. They have every right to be afraid.
- Wolverine: Look at me, Idie....you are not a monster, you hear me?
- Idie: It's okay. It doesn't bother me anymore. I've made my peace with what I am.
- Jason Aaron (w), Frank Cho (a), X-Men Schism #2, Marvel Comics, (September, 2011).
- Elliot: Is it monsters coming? Have you met monsters before?
- The Doctor: Yeah.
- Elliot: You scared of them?
- The Doctor: No — they're scared of me.
- Rose: What is that? What's happening?
- The Doctor: That was murder.
- Harriet: That was defence. It's adapted from alien technology. A ship that fell to Earth ten years ago.
- The Doctor: But they were leaving.
- Harriet: You said yourself, Doctor, they'd go back to the stars and tell others about the Earth. I'm sorry, Doctor, but you're not here all the time. You come and go. It happened today. Mister Llewellyn and the Major, they were murdered. They died right in front of me while you were sleeping. In which case we have to defend ourselves.
- The Doctor: Britain's Golden Age.
- Harriet: It comes with a price.
- The Doctor: I gave them the wrong warning. I should've told them to run as fast as they can, run and hide because the monsters are coming. The human race.
- Cirilla: Are you a monster?
- Vereena: Are you a monster because you are different?
- Cirilla: Monsters do bad things to people.
- Vereena: Humans do bad things to everybody.