Traumafessions :: Eric Weber of Yedi Hideout on Swamp Thing

There is only one instance in the history of my movie-going experiences where I had to leave the theater.

When I was seven, my dad took me to see SWAMP THING (1982). I can recall sitting there enjoying all of the action and adventure when, slowly, I began feeling deeply disturbed. A moment comes late in the film where, during a semi-swank party at his mansion, the villain (played by LOUIS JOURDAN) tests a secret potion on his henchman, Bruno, (played by the lovable and adorable NICHOLAS WORTH.) Bruno starts twitching and convulsing as his face begins to bubble up and deform while all of the party guests start flipping out. I remember becoming super-agitated and nervous and told my dad that we needed to leave, “RIGHT NOW!”

Even when the movie began airing on HBO, I found myself totally and completely terrified when this scene started. I would literally hide behind the couch and peek out every now and then. Little did I realize that an even more disturbing scene was awaiting me! After Bruno is turned into a kind of sweet-looking, pint-sized rat creature, LOUIS JOURDAN takes the potion himself and begins transforming into this creature in a truly disturbing and gory sequence with lots of gooey special effects. I went absolutely out of my mind and remember racing upstairs to the safety of my bedroom.

I don’t think I watched the movie in its entirety until my teenage years when stuff like SWAMP THING was old hat and I had already moved on to the works of JOHN CARPENTER, GEORGE ROMERO, TOBE HOOPER, etc.

Actually, I lied – there was one other instance where I walked out of a film but that was THE MATRIX RELOADED for completely different reasons.

Eric Weber at

Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Ryan Clark
10 years ago

I was also freaked out by that scene!!

10 years ago

Ironically, the freakiest thing about that scene to me is his hair.

10 years ago

Stop poking around inside my brain! It’s like the entire Kindertrauma community knows all my deepest fears. I didn’t write this myself because I knew it one of you two would put a screen shot of this. I haven’t seen this since I was 7 or 8. I got nervous scrolling down the page. and Hbo was kind enough to replay this over and over again throughout my youth.

I’d rather face the wood beast in Flash Gordon 1000 times then watch that scene again.

10 years ago

I grew up thinking that the Swamp Thing scene that freaked me out the most was the Louis Jourdan transformation at the end, but a couple of years ago I rented it and when the Nicholas Worth dinner party tranformation happened I found that I remembered it but had totally blocked it out of my mind out of fear.

It’s a pretty crappy (but fun, I think) movie to have caused this much pain in so many movie-watching 80s children!