A Shout-Out to Richard Matheson

Have you heard of Richard Matheson? You should have if you’re a fan of horror and science fiction novels and movies.

Matheson’s book I Am Legend spawned three movie adaptations: The Last Man on Earth (1964), The Omega Man (1971) and I Am Legend (2007) starring Will Smith.

Other Matheson books/short stories that were made into movies:

Matheson also wrote screenplays for The Twilight Zone, Star Trek and Amazing Stories. His short story Nightmare at 20,000 Feet was the Twilight Zone episode in which a man on a flight looks out the window and sees a monster clambering on the airplane's wing.

How about the iconic Zuni fetish doll who comes alive in the 1975 TV movie Trilogy of Terror? The one holding a tiny knife who pursues a woman all over her apartment? All three segments in the anthology film were based on Matheson short stories.

I’m currently re-reading I Am Legend. I consider it one of the best vampire novels ever written. The short, clipped sentences pull you in. They keep you on the edge of your seat.

Most important, the book’s not just about vampires. It’s about the human condition, man's instinct to survive and his need for companionship and love. It’s about a man driven to the brink of insanity by catastrophic events. It is poignant, sad and scary.

And oh, the ending’s a doozy.


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