There are very few movies these days that actually scare me. In fact, it has been that way for a long time. Sure, it could because I’ve seen so many, but also because in my head, I know it is just a movie. But when I watched Henry: Portrait of a Serial Killer (1986) the first time, that scared me. And one of the reasons was due to the performance of Micahael Rooker in the title role, and Tom Towles as his sadistic sidekick Otis. His performance was so real and downright frightening. Later Towles would appear in several other horror films, such as Tom Savini’s remake of Night of the Living Dead, taking on the role of the stubborn minded Harry Cooper, making this character his own. He also appeared in all of Rob Zombie’s film, really making himself a staple in the genre. He also would make the rounds of the conventions, getting the chance to meet his fans. I have to say that Towles was one of those figures that could chill your bones just with a stare. But when he smiled and said hello to you, all of that boogeyman persona just melted away. I was lucky enough to meet him a couple times over the years and it was an honor to meet him.
But unfortunately, the reason for this post is the news of his passing last Thursday, April 2nd. It seems that he suffered a stroke a few days before and had been in the hospital since then. The horror genre has lost a memorable figure this month and he will be missed. Rest in Peace, Mr. Towles.