Friday, January 3, 2014

Detroit Demons: Morgus the Magnificent, Sir Graves Ghastly, and The Ghoul

I always had a taste for the bizarre. Growing up in a Detroit suburb, my first access to demonic characters was on television.  Whilst I were a mere eleven years old, Morgus the Magnificent left New Orleans and began appearing, via Detroit airwaves, on my television five weekday afternoons and one midnight hour every Friday.  The afternoon broadcasts were five minute weather forecasts.  The reports were at 5:55 pm usually following a Bowery Boys movie.   Morgus on Friday Nights was the emcee for one horror movie or another.

By the time Morgus left Detroit television, Sir Graves Ghastly had taken over.  I don't recall if they overlapped or not.  I know Sir Graves started in 1967.  I know Morgus weather reports had ended a few years earlier but he may still have had his Friday night show.  Sir Graves' movie hosting would not have been a worry to Morgus because Sir Graves was on Saturday afternoons.  No time slot battles.  Also Morgus was a mad scientist and Sir Graves was a vampire.  Which is strange if you think about it.  Saturday afternoon and its sunlight would be a hazard to vampires.  I was not a fan of Sir Graves.

A fan of the Ghoul I was.  The Ghoul came across the boob tube in 1971.  One of his favorite pastimes was to go through his mail and find a model car some adolescent had assembled, customized, painted and sent in.  The Ghoul would take this treasure, stick firecrackers in it and proceed to blow the car into smithereens.  The Ghoul had one lens of his horn-rimmed glasses blacked out, wore black tape for a mustache and goatee, and dressed in t-shirts, lab coat, jeans and sneakers, and topped it off with a fur(?) hat (fright wig?).  A regular Beau Brummel.  He consistently mocked his audience and belittled his biggest fans.  He also was notorious for talking over the movies he showed.  He was unique, warped, and out-of-control.  The budget for his show wouldn't cover lunch at White Castles.  Yet, the Ghoul managed to delight and entertain every week.

I enjoyed the hosts of Detroit's horror movies but I think I would have enjoyed the host more if I lived in California.  After all, they had Vampira and Elvira.

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