Name That Trauma :: Reader Howard P. on a Disemboweled Bathing Beauty

name that trauma!

I’ve thrown this one out to the Internet hordes before, with no luck. Help me, Obi-wan K’trauma! You’re my only hope.

I saw this movie on late-night T.V. around 1976, give or take a few years. It was probably on SAMMY TERRY on Channel Four in Indianapolis. (If you don’t know SAMMY TERRY, he’s worth a look. Check out the link — it’s even got Nixon!)

Anyway, I remember this movie in black-and-white, but we had a B&W T.V., so it may have been in color, no thanks to my cheapskate Dad.

The opening scene involves some unscrupulous capitalists dropping nuclear waste on an old shipwreck. Through the magic of double-exposure, we see the nuclear waste transform the dead pirates into gill-men.

The next scene I remember is the gill-men coming up on land and menacing some bathing beauties. The image that is seared into my pre-‘tween memory is of a gill-man disemboweling a bathing beauty by gently stroking his claws along her abdomen, releasing a torrent of Hershey’s Syrup. It was the most gore I’d seen at that point in my life. And it looked really fake.

The movie I’m thinking of is most definitely not THE HORROR OF PARTY BEACH, which is an awesome film that I recommend to everyone. Nor is it the Italian-made, ROGER CORMAN-produced THE ISLAND OF THE FISHMEN. I have seen these, and ruled them out.

do you know

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13 years ago

Based on what I can find on YouTube, it may well be The Beach Girls and the Monster. But I don’t see the scenes I remember — in particular, the skeletons on the ocean floor reacting to radioactive waste, and the weird strokey-bleedy gore. In any case, The Beach Girls and Monster looks like a movie I should definitely check out — the Whiskey-a-Go-Go girls plus gill-monsters! Rrrowr!

13 years ago

Now that I’m reasonably sober — it’s been well over a week since I emailed my Name That Trauma — can I just say that that Sammy Terry link in my original email is the awesomest thing ever?

I’ll definitely check out The Beach Girls and the Monster (thanks, Futurechimp!), but seriously — Sammy Terry, Vincent Price, plus the pep squad from Northside High School circa 1972? Pure gold.

13 years ago

the scenes of the nuclear waste getting dumped overboard, and the double-exposure of skeletons turning into gill-men, is from the beginning of “Horror of Party Beach”. “Beach Girls and the Monster” doesn’t have that, but it definitely does have the scene you described of the bathing beauty getting clawed to death. I saw both films as a little kid, and had them conflated until revisiting them separately, many years later. Any chance you did the same? has the entirety of “Beach Girls and the Monster” as a special (allegedly better) tv edit. I haven’t seen it, ’cause my old mac isn’t compatible with the veoh player (sob).

unkle lancifer
12 years ago

I know this is late but I think I got it!

might it be 1972’s DOOMWATCH?