Killer Klowns from Outer Space. In this 1988 horror-comedy classic, the evil extraterrestrials employ inventive ways of killing their victims, such as encasing them in cocoons fashioned from cotton candy. Sure, it's a bit silly, but why do these aliens resemble circus clowns?
Clowns from the 2016 Clown Sightings. All of a sudden, in August of 2016, MANY reports surfaced of people disguised as evil clowns in incongruous settings, such as near forests and schools. Sometimes they had weapons such as machetes, knives and axes. Some stoicly stood still. Some chased after cars and children. Either way, that's the scariest shit I've ever heard. There was speculation that it was guerilla marketing for Rob Zombie's 2016 film 31, but I'm not buying it. The clown sightings ended up spreading across the globe in a sort of snowball effect. Most sightings were either hoaxes or teenage boys being assholes. Either way, just look at this picture. Would you want to drive up on that at 3 in the morning? Not going to lie...I would speed up, hit it with my car and then reverse BACK over it, just to make sure it was dead.
Toy Clown (Poltergeist). This clown is iconic and has been parodied countless times. We all remember the terror we felt when the clown sprung to life and started to UFC-choke-out little Robbie Freeling.
Ronald McDonald. With a kill count that probably tops all entries of this entire list combined, Ronald McDonald is fucking terrifying. WHO IN THE WORLD thought that a clown would be a good mascot for a burger joint?
Billy the Puppet (Saw). Yes, I realize that he isn't a lead character. He isn't even sentient. However, Billy the Puppet has become the face of the SAW franchise, and the iconic, "I want to play a game," is immediately recognizable. This little, tricycle-riding asshole is scary. I don't care what you say.
Captain Spaulding (House of 1000 Corpses, Devil's Rejects). I'm not even going to lie. I'll shout it from the rooftops. I LOVE Rob Zombie and his hillbilly horror shows. I love his Halloween remakes. He is a damn fine filmmaker, and everyone needs to stop feigning cool and just admit it. Captain Spaulding is the proprietor of Captain Spaulding's Museum of Monsters and Madmen, as well as the patriarch of the Firefly family, the lead characters from the above-mentioned films. With 3 From Hell coming out later this month, you NEED to catch up if you haven't seen them. No spoilers. Get your asses in gear.
"Howdy folks! You like blood? Violence? Freaks of nature? Well then, come on down to Captain Spaulding's Museum of Monsters and Madmen. See the Alligator Boy, ride my famous Murder Ride. Most of all, don't forget to take home some of my tasty fried chicken! Ha ha! It just tastes so damn good!"
Twisty the Clown. (American Horror Story). Twisty is a disgraced clown who uses increasingly twisted methods to regain his position as an entertainer of children. He is a character in American Horror Story and isportrayed by John Carroll Lynch. He wears a makeshift prosthetic mask that literally scares the shit out of us.
John Wayne Gacy as Pogo. I mean, really. Does he need an introduction? Gacy raped and murdered over 33 young men and boys, burying 26 of them in the crawlspace underneath his home. In late 1975, he joined the Jolly Jokers, a clown club (yes, you read that correctly) whose members would regularly volunteer at various fundraisers and events dressed as clowns. You know it's bad when the other clowns are upset by how you do your makeup. Gacy capitalized on the clown aesthetic and began to paint while in prison. His "Pogo the Clown" series of paintings fetch thousands and are still traded in the serial killer memorabilia circuit.
Pennywise the Clown (Bill Skarsgård iteration). Stephen King’s inspiration for Pennywise was a late-boarder who sat down next to him on a delayed flight: A Ronald McDonald in full costume and make-up, smelling of booze, sweat and cigarettes. King had the right idea and capitalized on it, authoring one of the most popular books in horror history, and cementing the fear of clowns into the mainstream. Pennywise is absolutely terrifying. Although Tim Curry is genius beyond words, I find that 2017's Pennywise has a far more sinister aesthetic.
Art the Clown. Terrifier (Directed by Damien Leone) caused quite a stir upon its release in October of 2016. The slasher flick, starring the supporting character from the All Hallows' Eve anthologies, pulls no punches. David Howard Thornton is haunting as Art, and if you haven't seen his audition tape, stop what you are doing and Google it right now. It's a sight to behold. The violence is on-screen and incredibly graphic, and no one is safe. We can't wait for the next film, as this has huge franchise potential. Art, you're always in our hearts...but stay the fuck away from us.