Irony can be really twisted and cruel sometimes. In John Zacherle's case irony stroke again as the world lost one of its most iconic horror hosts right amidst the preparations for this year's Halloween celebration, on October 27th. He passed away at the age of 98.
Apart from his TV host duties with his Shock Theater program, John Zacherle (often going as Zacherley) also released a series of albums and singles in the 1960s. Some of his recording material was also arranged and released as CD compilations from 2000 on. 1958's Dinner With Drac (which we mentioned on a recent post) was his most notorious hit, peaking at #6 in the Billboard Hot 100. Dick Clark with whom John was good friends, played a more gentle version of the song on his American Bandstand show and gave it a huge boost.
He also appeared in a few films, 1958's Key To Murder and years later in horror comedies, Frankenhooker and Niagaravation, and voiced one of the characters in Frank Henenlotter's 1988 film, Brain Damage. In 2010 he became the star of the amazing documentary, The Aurora Monsters: The Model Craze That Gripped the World.
While the world loses its icons one after another, and as new ones fail to emerge to take the fallen's places, the world of horror, classic, spooky, funny, well-written, passionately performed horror, just lost one of its most unique, irreplaceable characters. There have been myriads of horror hosts, some of them really good, but John Zacherle was one of a kind and he will be sorely missed.