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feedmyleg
Dec 25, 2004

EVERY FAIRY TALE NEEDS ITS HERO.





From the Loch Ness monster to the Loveland frog, the Flatwoods monster to the amorphous blob, this thread is to discuss purportedly real creatures and occult oddities of all shapes, sizes, planets, and dimensions. Related subjects of the spooky, supernatural, conspiracy-adjacent are welcome, but this is explicitly not a thread to spread actively harmful QAnon or other truther nonsense.

Whether you’re a believer, skeptic, or wet-blanket like me who is interested in the historicity of the folklore and legend, let’s chat about some dang cool creatures and discuss what makes us so excited about them. Post your adorable Mothman fanart, recommend a podcast where two white men read Wikipedia entries verbatim, champion your favorite on-screen depiction of the Loch Ness monster, tell us about that time you legitimately saw a UFO, or let us in on how your uncle swears that in the summer of ’78 he lived in with a clan of Bigfoots for the three greatest months of his life.

The Rise of the Conspiracy Theory

Many of us grew up in the 90s, when cryptozoology and conspiracy theory fever was at its peak. The X-Files was terrifying, intriguing, and delighting us weekly on television, this newfangled internet thing began to allow fringe online groups to spread sightings and rumors with others all around the world, Coast to Coast AM brought anti-government paranoia into our living rooms (also, unfortunately, Alex Jones), and this sweet boy greeted us every time we checked out at the grocery store:



But the roots of modern conspiracy culture were born from 19th-century Spiritualism, at the nexus of two great tastes that taste great together—ancient folklore and modern science. One of my favorite podcasts Our Fake History has a fascinating and in-depth look at Madame Blavatsky, aka The Mother of the Occult who popularized the movement across the Western world. Séances, automatic writing, the Oahspe Bible, and lost continents like Lemuria were big business, but "ghost busting" investigators like Harry Houdini were determined to expose fraudsters and champion skepticism and rationality:



Belief in paranormal phenomena had been on the decline at the start of the 20th century, but driven by the unimaginable loss of life in World War I it found root again in those left grieving. Enter Charles Fort, a journalist and self-styled naturalist who collected stories of scientific anomalies into the best-selling compendium The Book of the Damned. It opens as such:

Introduction to The Book of the Damned posted:

A procession of the damned. By the damned, I mean the excluded. We shall have a procession of the data that Science has excluded.

Fort positioned himself in direct opposition to logical positivism—the burgeoning movement seeking to put empirical evidence at the forefront of the search for truth. Fort loathed skeptics and the scientific establishment, and was in many ways the prototypical conspiracy theorist. His book was filled with unexplained phenomena and unusual meteorological events including Star Jelly, Thunderstones, and unidentified aerial objects. This and his later works helped Fort to gather a fervent group of followers called “Forteans” who saw themselves as truth-seekers, skeptical of the “official story” and distrusting of the scientific establishment.



One such follower was Raymond A. Palmer (pictured here immortalized in a cover illustration). As a boy he had been left physically disabled by a car accident, and while recovering from frequent surgeries he sought solace in the pages of science-fiction magazines—specifically in their letters pages, which encouraged fans to correspond with each other. An avid writer with an interest in publishing, Palmer created the very first science-fiction fanzine and within a decade he was the chief editor of Amazing Stories magazine. In 1944 Palmer fished a letter out of a fellow editor’s trash can and published it. It had come from a deeply mentally ill man named Richard Sharpe Shaver who claimed to have discovered the secret root language all of man, traced back to Atlantis and the hollow earth.



The idea excited Palmer, and as more letters came in from a now-empowered Shaver, Palmer published them too. Readers’ imaginations and interests were piqued, and soon Palmer received a manifesto from Shaver that detailed the source of the voices that he heard in his head—the lost land of Lemuria, deep beneath our feet. Palmer was fascinated, but the letter was unpublishable in its raw form. He punched it up significantly, adding characters and a coherent plot, then published it as the magazine’s first ever "factual" story. Almost overnight, Amazing Stories became the best-selling science-fiction magazine in the world. Palmer published dozens more stories co-authored by himself and Shaver, and readers ate them up. Despite criticism, Palmer eventually took the opportunity to split from his publisher and create his own publishing company catering to the massive number of readers excited about such Fortean ideas with the new pulp magazine Fate (many issues available here), featuring True Stories of the Strange and the Unknown.



In a stroke of luck, Palmer was looking for the first issue’s cover story at the exact moment that amateur pilot Kennth Arnold was flying over Mt. Reinier, Washington and spotted what he thought to be 9 glowing discs moving at an incredible speed. He coined the term “flying saucer” upon landing. Palmer got the full exclusive, and Fate was picked up as a national magazine on newsstands across America. Its pages were filled with anecdotes, news stories, and editorials on the supernatural, occult, fringe-scientific, extraterrestrial, and cryptozoological. Reports of strange creatures and sightings filled its page, and driven by the craze of flying saucer sightings, it and other copycat magazines (many also published by Palmer) pushed the world of Fortean thinking into the mainstream and set the stage for the cryptid and conspiracy world that we know and love (?) today.

Cool and Creepy Cryptid Creatures
Screw all those words up there, we’re here for monsters. Here’s some of my favorites, and some videos about them that I enjoy:

The Loch Ness Monster
Perhaps the most prototypical cryptid, Nessie has captured the popular imagination since 1933, with widely-published hoax photographs driving it into the mainstream. One of my favorite cryptid YouTube channels TREY the Explainer put together a fascinating history on how the legend began (spoiler alert: the witness had recently seen a similar creature in King Kong!), and how the legend grew and changed over time:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P3MzM1gFDZs

Bigfoot
Another superstar due to the popularity of its Zapruder Film-like footage, now stabilized and enhanced with fancy AI technology:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PqaQuzacrjA

Many today still believe this footage to depict an actual creature unknown to science, but many skeptics believe the footage to be thoroughly-debunked and those involved to be fraudsters. In many cultures around the world stories of similar creatures can be found, from the enigmatic footprints purportedly left by the Himalyan yeti (recently and convincingly theorized to be solved) to tribes of sub-human wild men to stories of surviving populations gigantopithecus. Or maybe the Skinwalker Ranch folks are right and it's no mere animal, but an inder-dimensional shapeshifting being. Which is way lamer than chill hippie muder apes.

Flying Saucers
This is a big can of worms, but it goes without saying that UFOs and belief in the extraterrestrial, whether as visitors, observers, abductors, or beings too distant to ever contact, is a subject of passionate debate. Many people were excited about recently-released Navy footage of several UFOs, though some like myself feel those, too, have been well-debunked:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Le7Fqbsrrm8

My love of the subject peaked in the 1950s, with stories like the Kelly–Hopkinsville Encounter (dismissed at the time by Raymond Palmer!), Flatwoods monster, and an ongoing wave of Cold War-fueled UFO sightings.

Steller’s Sea Ape
A lesser known cryptid spotted first in 1741 and included in many compendiums of cryptids since—but one which the true and absolutely hilarious origin story is much better than the monster itself. YouTuber Ben G. Thomas breaks it down:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gwZbMMaRLJc

El Chupacabras
Did you know that the chupacabra has only been around since 1995? The term has been previously coined, but much like the Loch Ness monster, a recent movie-viewing may have had a very significant influence on this recent but very popular beast:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d-jkZE8AdLA

BTW—Monstrum is a terrific YouTube series from PBS about the origins and history of cryptids, folklore, and legends from around the world. Lots of great international monsters in here if you like the above.

Yokai
For some international flavor, Yokai are a favorite. More of a broad category than a supernatural creature, Yokai are folkloric spirits which are often allegorical in nature. Monstrum also did a great video on one here:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tCsHkU-TH3Y

The definition is quite broad, but the podcast Astonishing Legends had a really enlightening breakdown of the subject which I would highly recommend.

Much of the history of these movements are problematic or actively racist, sexist, and otherwise bigoted, and I think as we discuss it’s important to recognize that fact. Exoticism is wrapped up so much in the early history of this world that it’s impossible to escape—but that doesn’t mean that someone who enjoys the subject aligns with those values. It does mean that the things discussed in this thread should be taken in context of the political and social viewpoints of their times.

That’s enough words out of my dumb mouth—have at it!

feedmyleg has a new favorite as of 21:04 on Mar 7, 2021

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Halloween Jack
Sep 11, 2003

Let your word be "Yes, Yes" or "No, No"; anything more than this comes from the evil one.




I've never understood the fascination with Bigfoot and Loch Ness in particular. For me, if they turned out to be real, it wouldn't challenge my worldview at all. I'm sure there are rare species of beetles in the rainforest that we haven't discovered.

david_a
Apr 24, 2010





Megamarm

I like cryptozoology because it’s sorta a real science. Obviously stuff like the Jersey Devil is completely supernatural and silly (but fun!). However, some of the more mundane creatures might have some basis in undiscovered animals. Stuff like the shunka warakin is *sigh* 99% certain to just be folklore + a lovely taxidermy job, but how cool would it be if it wasn’t???

I think sea monsters are the most likely. Not stuff like globsters or plesiosaurs that always end up being decomposing whales & basking sharks, but more grounded animals. The coelacanth is basically the go-to example for arguing cryptozoology is legitimate, after all. Given how little we know of the ocean, who’s to say there’s not some more sizable weird squid or fish to be found?

There’s cryptic-related animals like the thylacine (or even more mundane) the ivory-billed woodpecker that definitely existed but probably don’t anymore, and I certainly hold out hope that there might be a few still out there.

david_a has a new favorite as of 00:58 on Mar 7, 2021

Karloff
Mar 21, 2013



Halloween Jack posted:

I've never understood the fascination with Bigfoot and Loch Ness in particular. For me, if they turned out to be real, it wouldn't challenge my worldview at all. I'm sure there are rare species of beetles in the rainforest that we haven't discovered.

I don't know, the discovery of a living dinosaur would excite me beyond the capability of rational thought and it would certainly be the most zoologically significant discovery for a century or more. Imagine the media circus, imagine seeing footage of it for the first time, not a special effect, an actual real living animal - it would blow my mind.

And it would also lend credence to all cryptids, the Loch Ness Monster is decisively considered a myth, if it turned out it was real, it would undermine scepticism as a concept for a long time.

feedmyleg
Dec 25, 2004

EVERY FAIRY TALE NEEDS ITS HERO.



Sadly, such discoveries are only becoming less likely over time with our current unchecked climate change, deforestation, and other habitat destruction. That sort of discovery is already exceedingly rare, but small and vulnerable populations are only going to have less of a chance of making it as time goes on. Here's a good video on living dinosaurs:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WO0Xzyq1te8

But I think it's fascinating that the spectrum of cryptid can span from extinct real-world creature sightings all the way to unknowable inter-dimensional shapeshifters. I wonder if the definition could be stretched even further until the lines begin to blur with real animals.

The coelocanth is obviously the poster child for real animals being yanked from crytpid to real animal, with The Lord Howe Island stick insect perhaps being a fast follow—briefly cryptid but now squarely back in animal territory. De-extinction is arguably also within the same realm, with the Wooly Mammoth debatably a quasi-cryptid due to its ever-looming clone threats. The endangered black-footed ferret was announced as cloned just this month, which is the first time we've successfully cloned an endangered species. The evocative physical presence of extinct taxidermied animals and things like the Moa foot and Siberean mammoth carcasses are just so beautifully evocative. But also very happy that the thylocine and British big cats still get headlines.

Here's a cool video about globsters and sea monsters:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1B_jGC3TeZU

Space Cadet Omoly
Jan 15, 2014

Yay




I think one of my favorite cryptids is the Jackalope because of the pure simplicity of it. It's just a bunny with antlers. It's an obvious fake and it's equally obvious as to how it was faked (take a dead rabbit and a dead deer and use the magic of taxidermy to combine the two), but who care? It's a fun idea and a cute design, so sit back and enjoy the idea of a little rabbit with big ol' antlers.

Hollismason
Jun 30, 2007

"Real life is messy, inconsistent, and it's seldom when anything ever really gets resolved."



Bigfoot is easily my favorite cryptid because its so believable to me. I don't know why I specifically just loving love Bigfoot theories , but the idea that some sort of primitive ape like creature survived to today is awesome.

Kvlt!
May 19, 2012

DIG THROUGH THE DITCHES
AND BURN THROUGH THE WITCHES



the abomimable snowman is my favorite one

Flying Zamboni
May 7, 2007

but, uh... well, there it is


As a kid I would frequently scare myself with stories of Bigfoot or UFOs and I've since always found cryptozoology to be a really fun subject to read about, even if I don't necessarily believe it.

Personally I love the Mothman. It's a simple but striking design for a monster associated some really weird stories that cross into alien conspiracy stuff.

DarklyDreaming
Apr 4, 2009

Welcome to Disney XD Everyone!

The Fresno Nightcrawlers will always have a special place in my heart:

https://i.imgur.com/u0idn4O.mp4

Just giant pants vibing in the woods

i must compose
Jul 4, 2010

that crazy Congress woman

I have a tattoo of the flat woods monster on my arm and everyone thinks it's marvin the martian. Also my city has the pope lick goatman. Posting on the ground floor of what will be a good thread I hope.

veni veni veni
Jun 5, 2005

Clunk! Clunk Clunk!



I feel like enhancing the infamous bigfoot tape makes it even more obvious that's just some guy in a gorilla suit, which I didn't think was humanly possible.

Snowglobe of Doom
Mar 30, 2012

Because if I tell you, you'll tell your friends, your friends are callin' me on the horn all the time, I gotta show up at shopping centers for openings and sign autographs and shit like that and it makes my life a *hell*. Okay? A living hell.


david_a posted:

There’s cryptic-related animals like the thylacine (or even more mundane) the ivory-billed woodpecker that definitely existed but probably don’t anymore, and I certainly hold out hope that there might be a few still out there.

Here in Australia we recently had a lot of excitement when a guy who has been trying to find a live Thylacine for several decades posted a triumphant "We found one!!!!" video. He had three trailcam photos, two were "ambiguous" but he was certain that the third one was "not ambiguous"

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nUwM16FaEZU

He said he was going to pass the photos along to experts for verification before posting them online which was a big red flag for anyone who's been following cryptozoology news for a while because there's been a whole lot of these jokers who have made big announcements and drawn things out for the publicity and then when they finally post their "evidence" it always turns out to be garbage. In this case the expert from the museum very quickly released a statement saying that he was fairly certain all three animals in the photos were pademelons (small wallabies) and when the Thylacine hunter finally posted his 'evidence' the following week it did indeed turn out to be garbage:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xMEKGLjzjBE

If you click through to his youtube channel he's posted a whole bunch of other videos and trailcam photos which are also inconclusive garbage, and now a whole bunch of people in Australia are pissed off at this dumbass for getting their hopes up over nothing

Ambitious Spider
Feb 13, 2012





Lipstick Apathy

Big mothman fan. Also always liked that duende sighting

https://youtu.be/9XrAVCZncjk

Snowglobe of Doom
Mar 30, 2012

Because if I tell you, you'll tell your friends, your friends are callin' me on the horn all the time, I gotta show up at shopping centers for openings and sign autographs and shit like that and it makes my life a *hell*. Okay? A living hell.


Halloween Jack posted:

I've never understood the fascination with Bigfoot and Loch Ness in particular. For me, if they turned out to be real, it wouldn't challenge my worldview at all. I'm sure there are rare species of beetles in the rainforest that we haven't discovered.

Thousands of new species of bugs and other creatures are discovered/named every year and there's potentially many many millions more yet to be discovered.

2020 was a slow year for obvious reasons but we still discovered a whole load of amazing animals:

https://twitter.com/alfonslopeztena/status/1338084579048099840

https://twitter.com/JacobOller/status/1277633898642640896

https://www.greenmatters.com/p/new-species-2020

DJ Fuckboy Supreme
Feb 10, 2011

And when you stare long into the abyss, you become aggressively, terminally chill



As a kid I was always fascinated by stories of the Jersey Devil and my personal favorite, the Mothman. I loved the idea that stuff that science could not explain or account for might exist. I'm now a skeptic rooted in empiricism, but I still wish for something to emerge that would challenge the natural world.

Bigfoot was never a cryptid that interested me, but I'm curious - Is it a singular cryptid or does the term represent a species?

DJ Fuckboy Supreme has a new favorite as of 15:08 on Mar 7, 2021

SuperMechagodzilla
Jun 9, 2007

NEWT REBORN


Halloween Jack posted:

I've never understood the fascination with Bigfoot and Loch Ness in particular. For me, if they turned out to be real, it wouldn't challenge my worldview at all. I'm sure there are rare species of beetles in the rainforest that we haven't discovered.

At this point in history, Bigfoot being proven real would be insane simply because he’s already been confirmed to be a fictional character - effectively created for the 1976 film “Sasquatch: The Legend Of Bigfoot”. The only way for Bigfoot that become real is if somebody Jurassic Park’d that fucker into existence (which, you must admit, would be pretty impressive in its own right). It’d be like if they discovered a Spongebob.

But the appeal has changed over time. As with the Chupacabra, the concept of Bigfoot didn’t actually exist before 1958 - the year Ray Wallace, inspired by recent media hype over Yeti-hunting expeditions, successfully faked a set of Yeti tracks in California. Roger Patterson published a book about Wallace’s creature in 1966, then began work on a ‘Boggy Creek’-styled fictional movie about an expedition to find “the Abominable Snowman of North America”.

So, both Wallace and Patterson were cashing in on Yeti enthusiasm. The real-world Mountain Gorilla was only discovered in 1902, and remained poorly researched for decades. Sir Arthur Conan Doyle published The Lost World in 1912, about how “monsters from the dawn of man's existence might still roam these heights unchallenged, imprisoned and protected by unscalable cliffs”, and a film version was released in 1925 - the same year as the Scopes Monkey Trial. King Kong was 1933. Bigfoot began with tales of celebrity explorers like Sir Edmund Hillary, and speculation over a “missing link” between human and animal. Those things were already a fad, and then Bigfoot evidence turned out to be insanely easy to fake.

Patterson’s movie apparently got stuck in some kind of production hell, and wasn’t actually made until four years after his death. If you watch Sasquatch: The Legend Of Bigfoot, it’s entirely focussed on the expedition - humble, earthy men heading out into a primordial lost world, with military-grade equipment and a native guide. Bigfoot barely appears at all, but there’s a bear attack sequence.

So you’re right that Bigfoot is a really outdated concept - which is why they had to introduce new variations on the myth. Expeditions to specific areas like Bluff Creek didn’t work, so Bigfoot became a nomad, or developed cloaking abilities, interdimensional travel, etc. Now finding him is believed to be pure luck, like he’s gonna be discovered in random footage, or the background of a selfie. What persists is just this idea of Bigfoot’s humanlike or superhuman intelligence. He’s an alien you can imagine without recourse to space travel. He’s far stronger than you, probably much smarter, and his thought processes are obviously very bizarre.

Snowglobe of Doom
Mar 30, 2012

Because if I tell you, you'll tell your friends, your friends are callin' me on the horn all the time, I gotta show up at shopping centers for openings and sign autographs and shit like that and it makes my life a *hell*. Okay? A living hell.


DJ Fuckboy Supreme posted:

Bigfoot was never a cryptid that interested me, but I'm curious - Is it a singular cryptid or does the term represent a species?

Species. There's been reports of multiple bigfoots (bigfeet?) appearing at once, bigfoots with different characteristics (hair colour, etc) and even a specific bigfoot known as "Cripplefoot" identified by its distinct footprints:

(That's famed bigfoot research Rene Dahinden in the photo)

Ivan Marx, the guy who 'discovered' these unique and remarkable footprints (which were later verified by bigfoot researchers as being "too sophisticated to be fake" and almost impossible to hoax) soon shot some footage of poor ol' Cripplefoot which he auctioned off to the highest bidder among the rival bigfoot researchers:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gK--v1j0L3E

Another random guy also turned up and started asking for money for bigfoot evidence which he'd 'discovered' in the area (an actual bigfoot he'd trapped in a mineshaft nearby, as well as a frozen bigfoot foot) which he talked up real nice but could never actually produce.

Marx would later go on to produce & narrate his own bigfoot documentary in 1975, which is available on Youtube:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Qd00Tb_rvBg

Here's a write-up of the whole sorry mess: https://bigfootbase.com/blog/recasting-infamous-cripplefoot-tracks-1969

Snowglobe of Doom has a new favorite as of 15:37 on Mar 7, 2021

Hollismason
Jun 30, 2007

"Real life is messy, inconsistent, and it's seldom when anything ever really gets resolved."



Snowglobe of Doom posted:

Species. There's been reports of multiple bigfoots (bigfeet?) appearing at once, bigfoots with different characteristics (hair colour, etc) and even a specific bigfoot known as "Cripplefoot" identified by its distinct footprints:

(That's famed bigfoot research Rene Dahinden in the photo)

The guy who 'discovered' these unique and remarkable footprints (which were later verified by bigfoot researchers as being "too sophisticated to be fake" and almost impossible to hoax) soon shot some footage of poor ol' Cripplefoot which he auctioned off to the highest bidder among the rival bigfoot researchers:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gK--v1j0L3E

Another random guy also turned up and started asking for money for bigfoot evidence which he'd 'discovered' in the area (an actual bigfoot he'd trapped in a mineshaft nearby, as well as a frozen bigfoot foot) which he talked up real nice but could never actually produce.

Here's a write-up of the whole sorry mess: https://bigfootbase.com/blog/recasting-infamous-cripplefoot-tracks-1969

This is a pretty drat cool.

SuperMechagodzilla
Jun 9, 2007

NEWT REBORN


Snowglobe of Doom posted:

Marx would later go on to produce & narrate his own bigfoot documentary in 1975, which is available on Youtube:

Correction!

Ivan Marx didn’t actually narrate the documentary. They took a bunch Marx’s random home movies and added a rambling, folksy, occasionally-nonsensical voiceover by actor Barrett Cooper. The actual Marx sounded totally different.

Cooper’s work technically went uncredited, but the credits include a “grateful acknowledgement”.

Snowglobe of Doom
Mar 30, 2012

Because if I tell you, you'll tell your friends, your friends are callin' me on the horn all the time, I gotta show up at shopping centers for openings and sign autographs and shit like that and it makes my life a *hell*. Okay? A living hell.


SuperMechagodzilla posted:

So you’re right that Bigfoot is a really outdated concept - which is why they had to introduce new variations on the myth. Expeditions to specific areas like Bluff Creek didn’t work, so Bigfoot became a nomad, or developed cloaking abilities, interdimensional travel, etc. Now finding him is believed to be pure luck, like he’s gonna be discovered in random footage, or the background of a selfie. What persists is just this idea of Bigfoot’s humanlike or superhuman intelligence. He’s an alien you can imagine without recourse to space travel. He’s far stronger than you, probably much smarter, and his thought processes are obviously very bizarre.

Bigfoot's psychic powers are also super popular among spiritualists these days, there's a ton of sasquatch oracles who claim to communicate with bigfoot creatures regularly. They even have their own conventions (probably because they're too kooky for the sciencey bigfoot researchers and got laughed out of the regular bigfoot conventions)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M6iduWmgKFo
If you can't stomach much of this poo poo then at least skip ahead to the interview starting at 9:35 with the woman who draws portraits of the sasquatches she's been psychically communicating with, it's essential viewing for all cryptid enthusiasts.



SuperMechagodzilla posted:

Correction!

Ivan Marx didn’t actually narrate the documentary. They took a bunch Marx’s random home movies and added a rambling, folksy, occasionally-nonsensical voiceover by actor Barrett Cooper. The actual Marx sounded totally different.

Cooper’s work technically went uncredited, but the credits include a “grateful acknowledgement”.

I've been bamboozled yet again by bigfoot hoaxer Ivan Marx

Hollismason
Jun 30, 2007

"Real life is messy, inconsistent, and it's seldom when anything ever really gets resolved."



What's a good book to read about Bigfoot theories and other cryptids , like a collection of legends etc..

Erghh
Sep 24, 2007
"Stuff"

Always enjoyed the conspiracy/weird tales threads. The classics just keep chugging along.

Speaking of classics

quote:

Michael Barkun, professor of political science at Syracuse University, posits that the idea of a reptilian conspiracy originated in the fiction of Conan the Barbarian creator Robert E. Howard.[8] The first appearance of "serpent men" in literature was in Howard's story "The Shadow Kingdom", published in Weird Tales in August 1929. This story drew on theosophical ideas of the "lost worlds" of Atlantis and Lemuria, particularly Helena Blavatsky's The Secret Doctrine written in 1888, with its reference to "'dragon-men' who once had a mighty civilization on a Lemurian continent".[9][8]

Howard's "serpent men" were described as humanoids (with human bodies and snake heads) who were able to imitate humans at will, and who lived in underground passages and used their shapechanging and mind-control abilities to infiltrate humanity.[10] Clark Ashton Smith used Howard's "serpent men" in his stories, as well as themes from H. P. Lovecraft, and he, Howard and Lovecraft together laid the basis for the Cthulhu Mythos.[11]

In the 1940s, Maurice Doreal (also known as Claude Doggins)[12] wrote a pamphlet entitled "Mysteries of the Gobi" that described a "serpent race" with "bodies like man but...heads...like a great snake" and an ability to take human form.[13] These creatures also appeared in Doreal's poem "The Emerald Tablets", in which he referred to Emerald Tablets written by "Thoth, an Atlantean Priest king". Barkun asserts that "in all likelihood", Doreal's ideas came from "The Shadow Kingdom", and that in turn, "The Emerald Tablets" formed the basis for David Icke's book, Children of the Matrix.[14]

Historian Edward Guimont has argued that the reptilian conspiracy theory, particularly as expounded by Icke, drew from earlier pseudohistorical legends developed during the colonisation of Africa, particularly surrounding Great Zimbabwe and the mokele-mbembe.[15]

It is something that probably shouldn't keep going though...

https://www.theatlantic.com/national/archive/2013/10/how-spot-reptilians-runing-us-government/354496/

https://www.nbcnews.com/think/opinion/qanon-s-capitol-rioters-nashville-bomber-s-lizard-people-theory-ncna1253819

https://www.wired.com/2013/03/secret-service-reptile-aliens/

tldr; David Icke still at it.

Space Cadet Omoly
Jan 15, 2014

Yay




Another Cryptid I like that's super simple, but also super cute in the same style as the Jackalope is the Tsuchinoko.



Tsuchinokos are a Japanese cryptids and instead of being long and thin like most snakes they're short and fat. They're the pugs of the snake world.

They show up a lot in Japanese pop culture, they were the inspiration for the Pokemon Dunsparce:


They're featured on a ridiculously adorable Yugioh card:


And you can get a special achievement in Metal Gear Solid 3 if you manage to catch one and then go the whole game without eating its tasty flesh:
https://metalgear.fandom.com/wiki/Tsuchinoko

https://twitter.com/tsuchinokoradio/status/1174486943276634112?s=20

Tsuchinokos are one of those cryptids that, in addition to being precious, seems plausible because it's somehow less ridiculous than a bunch of real life animals.

I mean, you know what really lives in Japan? Giant salamanders:


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8vAxdmb-Qkc

I feel like seeing a salamander the size of a dog would make the idea of a chubby little snake seem way more believable via comparison.

Captain Jesus
Feb 26, 2009

What's wrong with you? You don't even have your beer goggles on!!


Ambitious Spider posted:

Big mothman fan. Also always liked that duende sighting

https://youtu.be/9XrAVCZncjk



I always loved this video. For one, the idea that the cartoon gnomes are real is really funny, and also it's funny that someone would be frightened by the sight of a cartoon gnome.

frankee
Dec 29, 2017



i must compose
Jul 4, 2010

that crazy Congress woman

Hollismason posted:

What's a good book to read about Bigfoot theories and other cryptids , like a collection of legends etc..

The complete guide to mysterious beings by John Keel.

Hodgepodge
Jan 29, 2006


cross posting a reply to someone quoting smg from this thread:

Hodgepodge posted:

yeah, smg tends to be pretty careful here- if you said the sasquatch, etc, were recent inventions that would be wrong. we tend to forget that some of those stories turned out to be very literally real- the orangutan, etc. sto:lo (from who the local word sasquatch come) are quote clear that it isnt a supernatural being, but an ordinary animal, and pre-european contact between the west coast and the islands of the pacific was until recently dismissed out of hand when the idea that maybe people here just... knew about other species of ape from other people who didnt happen to be great white assholes is actually one plausible explanation (albeit not necessarily a definitive explanation).

the mysterious bigfoot based on these sort stories is a separate but related mythos, much as a strigoi is only "a vampire" because they resemble our own recent stories based on eastern european stories about various distinct types of undead creatures and real personalities such as vlad tepes dracul. the stories, people, and concepts that inspired stoker's book are then retroactively classified as examples of the imaginative category that they inspired.

SuperMechagodzilla
Jun 9, 2007

NEWT REBORN


Snowglobe of Doom posted:

Bigfoot's psychic powers are also super popular among spiritualists these days, there's a ton of sasquatch oracles who claim to communicate with bigfoot creatures regularly. They even have their own conventions (probably because they're too kooky for the sciencey bigfoot researchers and got laughed out of the regular bigfoot conventions)

[...]

I've been bamboozled yet again by bigfoot hoaxer Ivan Marx

It’s understandable, because I might be the first person on the internet to have actually looked into how the movie was made. Every source I’ve found just states as fact that Marx did the narration. Because, like, who’s going to bother checking? It shows just how easily these things escape scrutiny; the movie’s been circulating for 46 years now, and nobody gave a poo poo.

I don’t believe Legend Of Bigfoot 1975 is specifically a Marx hoax, though, I get the impression that he sold his hoax footage to some studio, and they realized, like, “oh gently caress, this poo poo is unusable.” The film is like 95% vacation footage, without audio. The voiceover is the only thing creating any semblance of a narrative.

For example, in the most infamous bit, they show a shot of a car, followed by a shot of a rainbow. The narrator claims the car’s headlights are Bigfoot’s eyes, the rainbow is some kind of interdimensional portal, and the whole thing is the culmination of an Inuit prophecy. Watching this, it sounded like an actor going for ‘religious awe’ and coming across as schizophrenic. As it turns out, that was pretty much the case.

But it does show how the narrative shifted. To the extent that the film has any story, it’s “Marx” pushing for the view that Bigfoot is nomadic, vegetarian, and imbued with aboriginal spiritual powers.

FreudianSlippers
Apr 12, 2010

Shooting and Fucking
are the same thing!



My politics?

I'm a Marxist-Sasquatchist.

SuperMechagodzilla
Jun 9, 2007

NEWT REBORN


Hodgepodge posted:

yeah, smg tends to be pretty careful here- if you said the sasquatch, etc, were recent inventions that would be wrong. we tend to forget that some of those stories turned out to be very literally real- the orangutan, etc. sto:lo (from who the local word sasquatch come) are quote clear that it isnt a supernatural being, but an ordinary animal, and pre-european contact between the west coast and the islands of the pacific was until recently dismissed out of hand when the idea that maybe people here just... knew about other species of ape from other people who didnt happen to be great white assholes is actually one plausible explanation (albeit not necessarily a definitive explanation).

the mysterious bigfoot based on these sort stories is a separate but related mythos, much as a strigoi is only "a vampire" because they resemble our own recent stories based on eastern european stories about various distinct types of undead creatures and real personalities such as vlad tepes dracul. the stories, people, and concepts that inspired stoker's book are then retroactively classified as examples of the imaginative category that they inspired.

Obviously, all manner of 'wildman' stories predate Bigfoot. That was like the bulk of Patterson's book.

For example, Patterson cites the 1924 Ape Canyon Incident. A newspaper called The Oregonian reported that five men were attacked by hairy. rock-tossing "mountain devils" near Mt. St. Helens after killing one. Bigfeet!

Well, hold up: The Oregonian also reported that the mountain devils had rabbit-like pointed ears. There were between four and thirty of them. They were members of an mythical ancient tribe of superpowered aboriginal cavemen, with such abilities as psychic communication and mesmerism.

Fred Beck, the main guy behind the Ape Canyon story, later changed the story to more closely match the Yeti Expedition narrative, and produced the book "I FOUGHT THE APEMEN OF MOUNT ST. HELENS, WA." in 1967 - shortly after being interviewed by Patterson for his book, and around the same time that the Patterson footage was filmed. The book, co-written by Beck's son, makes no mention of the pointed ears.

At this point, Beck claimed that he himself had psychic powers. He and the other men had communicated directly with aboriginal ghosts a few years earlier, in the same spot. He could manifest objects. The mountain devils Bigfeet were now noncorporeal beings from a different vibrational plane, which became Beck's new grand unifying theory of ape-man sightings:

"Occasionally we of this dimension of space can be conscious of other beings of a different vibration and consciousness. The Abominable Snowmen are from a lower plane.When the condition and vibration is at a certain frequency, they can easily, for a time, appear in a very solid body. They are not animal spirits, but also lack the intelligence of a human consciousness. When reading of evolution we have read many times conjecture about the missing link between man and the Anthropoid Ape. The Snowmen are a missing link in consciousness, neither animal nor human. They are very close to our dimension, and yet are a part of one lower. Could they be the missing link man has been so long searching for?"

And, for that reason that Bigfeet are basically ghosts, he insisted that there would never be any actual evidence. So you can see how Beck (or, at least, his son) jumps almost directly from a proto-Bigfoot narrative to what we might call post-Bigfoot: the assertion that Bigfoot never really existed except as some kind of metaphysical concept.

Hodgepodge
Jan 29, 2006


SuperMechagodzilla posted:

Obviously, all manner of 'wildman' stories predate Bigfoot. That was like the bulk of Patterson's book.

For example, Patterson cites the 1924 Ape Canyon Incident. A newspaper called The Oregonian reported that five men were attacked by hairy. rock-tossing "mountain devils" near Mt. St. Helens after killing one. Bigfeet!

Well, hold up: The Oregonian also reported that the mountain devils had rabbit-like pointed ears. There were between four and thirty of them. They were members of an mythical ancient tribe of superpowered aboriginal cavemen, with such abilities as psychic communication and mesmerism.

Fred Beck, the main guy behind the Ape Canyon story, later changed the story to more closely match the Yeti Expedition narrative, and produced the book "I FOUGHT THE APEMEN OF MOUNT ST. HELENS, WA." in 1967 - shortly after being interviewed by Patterson for his book, and around the same time that the Patterson footage was filmed. The book, co-written by Beck's son, makes no mention of the pointed ears.

At this point, Beck claimed that he himself had psychic powers. He and the other men had communicated directly with aboriginal ghosts a few years earlier, in the same spot. He could manifest objects. The mountain devils Bigfeet were now noncorporeal beings from a different vibrational plane, which became Beck's new grand unifying theory of ape-man sightings:

"Occasionally we of this dimension of space can be conscious of other beings of a different vibration and consciousness. The Abominable Snowmen are from a lower plane.When the condition and vibration is at a certain frequency, they can easily, for a time, appear in a very solid body. They are not animal spirits, but also lack the intelligence of a human consciousness. When reading of evolution we have read many times conjecture about the missing link between man and the Anthropoid Ape. The Snowmen are a missing link in consciousness, neither animal nor human. They are very close to our dimension, and yet are a part of one lower. Could they be the missing link man has been so long searching for?"

And, for that reason that Bigfeet are basically ghosts, he insisted that there would never be any actual evidence. So you can see how Beck (or, at least, his son) jumps almost directly from a proto-Bigfoot narrative to what we might call post-Bigfoot: the assertion that Bigfoot never really existed except as some kind of metaphysical concept.

theres a lot of very dry humor in lovecraft. consider that cthulhu can be read as a satire of both christ and of his own atheist reaction to the possibility of christ returning and the resurrection occurring ("with strange aeons, even death may die" is a fundamentally christian notion and he was well aware of this).

which makes me wonder if he wasnt poking a little fun at this sort of thing when his "abominable snowmen" turned out to be a species of hyper advanced fungal angel/demons (the mi-go)

Phy
Jun 27, 2008





Fun Shoe

Space Cadet Omoly posted:

I mean, you know what really lives in Japan? Giant salamanders:


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8vAxdmb-Qkc

I feel like seeing a salamander the size of a dog would make the idea of a chubby little snake seem way more believable via comparison.

As a total aside, I always thought the sole North American member of the giant salamander family was neat, but not neat enough to really merit its common name, "HELLBENDER"

CPL593H
Oct 28, 2009

I know what you did last summer, and frankly I am displeased.

Captain Jesus posted:

I always loved this video. For one, the idea that the cartoon gnomes are real is really funny, and also it's funny that someone would be frightened by the sight of a cartoon gnome.

This gives me a chance to talk about one of my local cryptids. I live in Southern Massachusetts and we have no shortage of paranormal legends. A lot of it is based in Native American folklore. So now that you dared laugh at tiny little people cryptids let me tell you about the Pukwudgie.

Pukwudgies are a gremlin like creature with long ears and fingers which appear in the folklore of the Wampanoags who were the tribe that lived in South Eastern Massachusetts. Pukwudgies were said by the Wampanoags to dangerous creatures to be avoided at all costs. Sometimes they played relatively harmless pranks. But much of the time they were actively hostile and among other things would lure people into the woods and kill them either with poison arrows or magic or steal children in the night. To this day people still claim to see them wandering around forests. Which brings me to the Bridgewater Triangle.

The Bridgewater Triangle is an area in the aforementioned region that is a hotbed of paranormal activity. In this are people have reported sightings of cryptids, ghosts, and UFOs among other things. Near the center of the triangle is the Hockomock swamp which was sacred to the Wampanoags. Among other things it was a burial ground for the tribe. The swamp is said to be cursed and sightings of ghosts and Puckwudgies are common. People also have reported seeing thunderbirds. The most notorious part of the triangle is the Freetown State Forest. Aside from all the usual sightings of the paranormal in this dense forest many people believe to this day that it was and maybe still is a gathering place for cultists who perform Satanic rituals there. And this last part is not the stuff of legend but objective truth. There have been a number of murders and suicides there. It's a pretty ideal location for that because it's a large and very dense forest and a "middle of nowhere" kind of place. Don't walk off the trails.

Another famous resident of the Bridgewater Triangle is the Red Headed Hitchhiker. He can be seen at night walking up and down route 44. People have claimed to see him for decades. His trademarks are disappearing when people stop to pick him up, peering into the windows of moving cars, appearing to be in people's backseats when they look in the rearview mirror, and a terrifying laugh when he disappears after playing a trick on you. He is as the name suggests a red headed man dressed in flannel with dark lifeless eyes. About 12 years back I was watching something on tv about local legends with my brother, who was a tow truck driver at the time, who looked shocked when they mentioned the Red Headed Hitchhiker. He told me right away that he'd seen the hitchhiker. He was unaware of the legend but said there was just something about the man that didn't seem right.

And just one more! There's a road that cuts through the woods in this same region but outside of the triangle. The two common legends are the ghost car that will drive into and through your and the hanging bodies. Some people have said they saw bodies hanging from the trees and other even claimed that feet would graze the windshields and roofs of their cars. It's a long dirt road with no lights of any kind that ends in an old cemetery. I've been out there and can tell you that you if turn the headlights off you literally cannot see your hand in front of you. So that's probably a terrible place to breakdown. The area like much of the region and within the triangle was where the fighting between Natives and colonists happened in the King Philip's War. That also plays into many of the myths of the paranormal in all these places. The stories about the hanging bodies vary. Some say they're the colonists and some say they're Wampanoags.

Snowglobe of Doom
Mar 30, 2012

Because if I tell you, you'll tell your friends, your friends are callin' me on the horn all the time, I gotta show up at shopping centers for openings and sign autographs and shit like that and it makes my life a *hell*. Okay? A living hell.


SuperMechagodzilla posted:

For example, Patterson cites the 1924 Ape Canyon Incident. A newspaper called The Oregonian reported that five men were attacked by hairy. rock-tossing "mountain devils" near Mt. St. Helens after killing one. Bigfeet!

Well, hold up: The Oregonian also reported that the mountain devils had rabbit-like pointed ears.

You see this poo poo in cryptid and UFO/alien reports all the time. I remember one thread we had about UFOs and someone posted a well known story about a UFO that had flown over a US nuclear missile silo and caused a complete shut down of all their systems but when I went and tracked down the original reports the story was significantly less exciting than the popular version that was repeated on dozens of UFO websites.

The stuff I posted about Cripplefoot further up the page is another good example, I've seen photos of the footprints posted on a whole bunch of Bigfoot websites but all the peripheral details that indicate it was a dumb scam are almost always left out.



SuperMechagodzilla posted:

And, for that reason that Bigfeet are basically ghosts, he insisted that there would never be any actual evidence. So you can see how Beck (or, at least, his son) jumps almost directly from a proto-Bigfoot narrative to what we might call post-Bigfoot: the assertion that Bigfoot never really existed except as some kind of metaphysical concept.

A friend of a friend did his culture & communication PhD thesis on UFOs (the newspapers like to claim he holds a doctorate in Ufology) and he traveled all around the US and South America visiting the usual UFO hotspots and interviewing witnesses and alleged abductees and then wrote a book about his experiences and he concluded that even if UFOS weren't real in the typical sense they were still Real in the Lacanian sense.
If you watch any of the Bigfoot hunter reality TV shows it quickly becomes very apparent that they're actually striving to break through the symbolic order and glimpse something alien and unrecognizable (e: unrecognized by science, at least), the same as those ghost hunter shows and the UFO reality TV shows and thylacine trackers. They desperately want to witness The Thing that everyone else told them they could not and would not see, but which they know in their hearts of hearts they'll find if only they keep striving for it. It's also super super common for Bigfoot and UFO witnesses to claim over and over "I know what I saw!!!" which is also very telling. The know what they 'saw' is real because they need it to be real.

Snowglobe of Doom has a new favorite as of 08:46 on Mar 8, 2021

twistedmentat
Nov 21, 2003

What's a war hero got to do to get some lubrication around here?




I always loved how bigfoot has tits.

Snowglobe of Doom
Mar 30, 2012

Because if I tell you, you'll tell your friends, your friends are callin' me on the horn all the time, I gotta show up at shopping centers for openings and sign autographs and shit like that and it makes my life a *hell*. Okay? A living hell.


twistedmentat posted:

I always loved how bigfoot has tits.

And a huge Diaper Don rear end.

The Patterson-Gimlin tape pretty much cemented the public's concept of what bigfoot looks like forever after except the giant hairy tits and rear end, they hardly ever appear in subsequent reports.

E: the Australian Yowie Hunters website has an entire page of witness sketches and they all have tight toned butts or no butt at all, and either a flat chest or big manly pecs. I love that a Dogman somehow managed to sneak in there, plus my favourite bigfoot of all time: the dreaded Albino Sabertoothed Yowie

Snowglobe of Doom has a new favorite as of 09:13 on Mar 8, 2021

Halloween Liker
Oct 31, 2020



https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ka38S3xgLL8

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TY63KmKVp5s

Halloween Liker has a new favorite as of 12:33 on Mar 8, 2021

M_Sinistrari
Sep 5, 2008

Do you like scary movies?





david_a posted:

I like cryptozoology because it’s sorta a real science. Obviously stuff like the Jersey Devil is completely supernatural and silly (but fun!). However, some of the more mundane creatures might have some basis in undiscovered animals. Stuff like the shunka warakin is *sigh* 99% certain to just be folklore + a lovely taxidermy job, but how cool would it be if it wasn’t???

I think sea monsters are the most likely. Not stuff like globsters or plesiosaurs that always end up being decomposing whales & basking sharks, but more grounded animals. The coelacanth is basically the go-to example for arguing cryptozoology is legitimate, after all. Given how little we know of the ocean, who’s to say there’s not some more sizable weird squid or fish to be found?

There’s cryptic-related animals like the thylacine (or even more mundane) the ivory-billed woodpecker that definitely existed but probably don’t anymore, and I certainly hold out hope that there might be a few still out there.

I think that's probably the deep down core reason I love cryptids. They're a reminder that as much as we like to think we know of the world, there's still some surprises out there. I remember things like the vampire deer and the gill nosed deer were considered cryptids or myths until we discovered them. I know there's been an uptick in thylacine sightings which would be nice if it turns out some just hid out in the boonies and have bred enough that we're going to be seeing them again. I know some cryptids are likely just sightings of normal animals that don't look like we expect them to like that bear with mange picture that was making the rounds some years back. One of my forensics professors said a common one was people claiming to find a giant or bigfoot's hand bones but it was actually a skeletonized bear paw.

As far as local cryptids/mythologicals, New Mexico's got a healthy assortment. We've got Roswell for aliens, teratorns/pteradons around the Doña Ana Mountains though there was apparently a sighting over in Las Cruces, and some bigfoot and chupacabra sightings. I remember my first day arriving in Albuquerque and it was on the news at noon that what was believed to be a desiccated chupacabra found in the desert was determined to be the desiccated remains of a deep sea fish. I have no idea how a dead deep sea fish ended up in the desert out here. Skinwalkers are another big deal out here. There's rural spots where the police won't go at night because of skinwalkers.

Regarding stuff I've seen since moving out here, I've seen plenty of strange lights behaving oddly in the night sky. I've been to Taos and heard the hum. And when working graveyard shift at my first job out here, I saw some pale, short, hunched over, bald, humanoid looking thing darting through the parking lot. I still don't know what it was, but it unnerved me enough to bolt right back into the building with lit cig in hand.

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Halloween Liker
Oct 31, 2020



Its why those NASA cowards go to space instead of into the sea,

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