Post Comment 16 comments on “Episode 37 – The Shunned House

  • Rage on

    I never read the Shunned House until recently.

    Back in the 80ies I used to GM for my mates the Call of Cthulhu role playing game.
    To my annoyance John always played the soldier or gangster. Armed to the teeth with Tommy gun, dynamite and an Elephant gun for good measure. Spending the evening blowing the crap out of the plot I spent ages putting together.
    I kept telling him this is not in the spirit Lovecraft’s stories , you should play a Professor, Doctor or Librarian, run away or faint when the monster appears.
    How wrong I was, John you can have a flamethrower and all the dynamite you want, hang the plot

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  • Thousand Young on

    A little background on the Exeter vampire:

    Lovecraft also took the name of the “elder maiden sister”, Mercy, from this –

  • Old Man Parker on

    One of my favorite haunted house stories – and giving a very creepy twist on vampires and were wolfs! I think this shows H.P. Lovecraft’s unique genius and out standing talent for finding new chills in well known tales.

  • Christian bravery on

    …. the irony isnt that the protagonist investigates a horrible family – guess what im part of the family – its im appalled and horrified by my discoveries about said family – wow guess what im part of the family – hmmm actually that crazy stuff they’re doing is actually pretty cool, im going to join them.. thats the irony 🙂

  • Moebius on

    I was a little disappointed to hear that you guys didn’t like this story, as I have to admit its one of my favorites. Perhaps its because I’m a history student, so the long-winded genealogical data doesn’t bother me – rather, it sounds like really interesting work! I’d love to research and investigate a property like this.

  • Moebius on

    Also, the narrator’s ‘pseudo-scientific theory’ about the nature of the monster is, its true, not based on any solid evidence within the story. I’d argue, though, that the story never does actually confirm that this theory is correct – its just the narrator’s chosen interpretation. If anything, it seems more likely that his thinking at that point in the story is proven incorrect when the ether-radiation gun thing doesn’t work on the monster.

    Besides, the theory itself is a very open-ended one, and is actually pretty non-committal. It basically is just saying “well, it’s probably not scientifically impossible for a ghost-like entity to exist in a state that we simply can’t or haven’t yet classified.” Him being correct on that idea – if he truly is – really isn’t terribly impressive.

  • Raúl Moreno on

    I’m with Moebius in both posts.

  • BreeLandwalker on

    Re: Flamethrowers. Ah yes, the old standby. When all else fails, KILL IT WITH FIRE.

  • Old Man Parker on

    I agree with Moebius TIHS story ranks!

  • Chris Jarocha-Ernst on

    1) The site in Elizabeth no longer has the house HPL saw. It’s now a modern coffee shop. Across the street, though, is “Winfield Scott Plaza”, named after the same person HPL’s father was named after.
    2) The Exeter vampire event has its own Wikipedia page. But HPL got the story from Charles Skinner’s MYTHS AND LEGENDS OF OUR OWN LAND, “The Green Picture”, which is also the source for “The Shunned House” in general.

  • Old Man Parker on

    Much later on, …and I like this HPL story even MORE. Chris and Chad are just plane out WRONG. This is a really good and scary story. Sorry, you guys were not reading closely enough, I guess. The history and theory are thoughtful and intriguing, supporting the “WEIRD” in this Weird Tale.

  • DerSpeigel on

    I smell the origination of the Ghostbusters proton packs here. I’ve always quite liked this story. Also how much of modern “ghost hunting” is inspired by this story?

  • dotexe on

    Got to agree with Moebius. This story is awesome.

  • TheNikus on

    I am really at odds with this podcast. Personally, I found The Rats in the Walls very forgettable, while The Shunned House has been one of my favorite Lovecraft stories so far.
    I remember that while I was reading the story, the Providence setting and the presence of a character named “Whipple” gave me the impression that it was somehow autobiographical–up to the point where they take their flame throwers and sci-fi equipment into the house, of course. I was very disappointed when I read afterwards that it wasn’t really based on one of Lovecraft’s childhood experiences. But I still found the story incredibly gripping and exciting.
    FYI, Elihu is a biblical name and is normally pronounced “Ee-LIE-hoo”.

  • Serenanocturna on

    Moebius, Old Man Parker & TheNikus have the right of it. This story is the brilliantly horrific & unique work of a genius! It builds the narrative with a feeling of genuine history – undergirding it with the slowly developed facts as would happen from realistic research. For me, the tale has an exquisitely old fashioned feel to it as it unfolds like an old-time discussion being told in an inn around a fire on a stormy night where the patrons have no hurry & are interested in what the old-timer can tell them about that creepy old house that some visitor noticed earlier in the day, wondering what was it’s history. I think that Chris & Chad were in too much of a hurry, as they often are in preparing for this excellent podcast. If they both were forced to reread it or discuss it with, say, Robert Price (The Lovecraft Geek) or Ken Hite, I expect they’d come away with a different opinion.

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