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The Legend of Ed Gein and His Filmic Rebirth Essays

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The Legend of Ed Gein and His Filmic Rebirth


So you want to hear a legend hmm? Well, I'll give you what you want, but taint nothin' ‘bout it fiction. Now, you one of them scholarly types ain't ya–college and libraries and all that crap, right? Well, college kiddy you may think you know it all, but I know a thing or two about a thing or two. You haven't seen nothin'. You don't know a damn thing until you step right into the path of a cold-blooded killer. ‘Til you look that crazy sumabitch right in his red eyes and send him back to hell! My name is Deputy Sheriff Frank Worden. I'm old now. When I was young, I was the Deputy Sheriff of this here great town of Plainfield, Wisconsin. I know whatcha thinkin'. I ain't no drunk and ain't crazy. Crazy is man who massacres dozens of women–alive and dead. Crazy is a man who eats human hearts for dinner. Crazy is the way your generation made that bastard one of the most famous movie characters in the world. Crazy...is Edward Gein!

Ed...well, he was born and raised in Plainfield. His daddy ran a farm just a few miles outside town. It wasn't long before his daddy up and died–left Ed and his brother alone with that crazy ass momma of their's. That woman was nuts. She went around tellin' them boys that all women was evil. She'd beat'em if they even thought ‘bout courting. When his momma died Ed was near on to thirty years old and still living in his momma's house. He finally took a liking to some gals in town. I guess it was finally safe to talk to ‘em.

I don't think no one thought much of Ed. He was real quite like. You know? Kinda kept to himself. I didn't pay much attention to him until that day. I guess it was round ‘bout November of ‘57. Early one morning I thou...


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...ual narrative makes the legend more appealing and provides a means for experiencing pleasure in film. Still, however bland the oral legend may have become the horror genre owes its popularity to Ed Gein. His legend is the basis for Texas Chainsaw Massacre, Friday the 13th, Halloween, When a Stranger Calls, Psycho, Silence of the Lambs, and just about every other psychopathic character ever to have graced the silver screen.

Works Cited

Mulvey, Laura."Visual Pleasure and Narrative Cinema." The Sexual Subject: A Screen Reader in Sexuality/Screen. London: Routledge, 1992.

Rebello, Stephen. Alfred Hitchcock and the Making of Psycho. New York: Red Dembner Enterprises Corporation, 1990.

Rothman, William. Hitchcock–The Murderous Gaze. Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1982.

Wood, Robin. Hitchcock's Films Revisited. New York: Paperback Library, 1970.


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