review: The Mad Doctor Of Blood Island (1968)

review: The Mad Doctor Of Blood Island (1968)

There are certain places in this world that you will never find on any map or globe, secret places that exist exclusively in the esoteric geography of horror. Places like Slime City, Hobb’s End, Monster Island, Castle Rock, Vlkava, Potter’s Bluff, Santa Carla, Dunwich, Tromaville, and Matool. No one can show you how to find these places. You only get there after you’ve become lost, hopelessly lost forever.

For discerning horrorphiles, there exist no utopian hideaways closer to heaven (or hell) than these tucked-away tourist tombs, and few things are more valuable than the keepsakes acquired from them. Of all the items on my own souvenir shelf, the one I cherish maybe more than any other is a peculiar vial of olive-hued goop obtained during an especially memorable visit to one of my favorite and most frequently attended vacation hotspots: an exotic tropical paradise crawling with strange locals and even stranger forms of not-quite-natural wildlife, an isolated Filipino locale long forgotten by National Geographic and forever spurned by every travel agent with a good head on his shoulders. I’m talkin’, don’t you doubt it, of the one and only… Blood Island!

I first discovered the wonders of this wicked Island courtesy of the always dependable Uncle Ted, a now sadly departed stage magician and television personality who once served as the old school horror host for two locally grown creature feature showcase programs in my hometown area. If memory serves, Uncle Ted was hardly hesitant in exposing his young charges to the dubious delights of Blood Island, and it is to his memory I offer up thanks for helping me become a card-carrying member of the Blood Island Regulars tourist association.

A vacation on Blood Island is, I assure you, an unforgettable experience. Ignore what the pamphlets for Disney Land say, because Blood Island is the TRUE “most magical place on Earth.” France may have the Louvre and the Eiffel Tower, but does it have humping naked natives, slit-throat goats, and slime-barfing beasties? I think not. Blood Island is like Hawaii, but without all the pork ‘n’ pineapples, and more sex ‘n’ violence. Grab your passport and bring your camera, kids. You might not get any leis, but you’ll definitely get laid.

I remember the journey in which I obtained the ooze-filled vial well, though it was hardly the first of my expeditions into the forbidden flora and fauna of Blood Island, nor would it be my last. I arrived on the Island by means of an admittedly rickety little ship carrying an eclectic smattering of kindred misfit voyagers. There was Carlos, who was himself a onetime Island native. He had left his home long ago with dreams of a better life in America, a place he no doubt expected to find bursting with endless opportunity and streets paved with gold. Carlos was making the return trip to Blood Island in hopes of convincing his mother to join him in the New  World. Then there was Bill Foster, who billed himself as a doctor interested in studying the inhabitants of Blood Island. He came across more like an empty-headed kung-fu disco gigolo. I liked him immediately. The companion whose presence I appreciated the most, however, was Sheila. Sheila was a beautiful red-haired vixen who reminded a wee bit of Ginger from Gilligan’s Island (mind you, I was always more of a Ginger man than a Mary-Ann fan). She was on her way to Blood Island for reasons similar to those of Carlos. Simply put, she was there to find her alcoholic beach bum father. She was also ostensibly Dr. Foster’s significant other but, as I recall, that didn’t keep her from engaging in a bit of the old in-out in-out, real savage, with yours cruelly in a sailor shit-stinking loo upon the aforementioned rickety ship. Hommina hommina hommina!

I’m tellin’ ya, kids, if that boat had sunk, we wouldn’t have been in a lick of danger. Every last one of us, captain and his crew included, could’ve easily used Sheila’s righteous rack as a floatation device to help us get safely to shore.

::sigh:: In case, you’re a little slow in the head, I’m trying to convey the fact that the woman had really nice boobs. I swear, you people need everything spelled out for ya! Que sera, sera.

Moving on…

By the time we arrived on the Island, the Green-Blooded Ones had already been active for quite some time, terrorizing the locals with their flesh-ripping, chlorophyll-spewing ways, their vile villainy capable of making reality itself throb with a kind of existential nausea. Though the mystery surrounding the Green-Blooded Ones struck fear into the hearts of my companions, I relished the adventure their presence promised.

Shortly before our arrival, the Green-Blooded Ones had already turned one unlucky topless tart into so much human coleslaw. Then, during our first night there, Sheila found herself squarely within the sights of a Green-Blooded Peeping Tom (could you blame him?)! Of course, those of the emerald vitae weren’t the only ones with a penchant for peeping. I fondly remember the day I joined Sheila’s pervy papa to take in the sumptuous sights of Blood Island, most notably in the form of a naughty nymphet skinny-dipper. While he and I rewarded our eyeballs with endless gazing glimpses of jiggly-jugged native cuties, Sheila’s own explorations yielded less pleasurable results. Wandering headfirst into the putrescent path of one of the ghoulish Green-Blooded Ones, Sheila managed to escape the chartreuse monster’s feral attack only by the grace of god and the fortunate timing of a spear-lobbing Blood Island tribesman wearing a goat like a boa (the height of Island couture, I swear). Though the courageous young man’s heroic efforts did indeed provide salvation for salacious Sheila, he himself fell before the bludgeoning, entrail-eviscerating fury of his malevolent mutant foe. His sacrifice would not be forgotten. Sadly, the same cannot be said of the fallen fellow’s name. Who the hell was that guy? I can’t for the life of me remember.

What was I just talking about?

Eh, oh well. Back to Sheila’s luscious rump and buoyant milkbags then. Following Sheila’s near fatal run-in with the diabolical Green-Blooded Ones, the darling dame finally realized that nightgowns were not appropriate garb for all occasions and, after trading in her sheer sleepwear for a form-fitting, cleavage-squeezing, gold-colored prom dress, Sheila regaled us all with her torrid tale of inhuman evil. Most interested in her outlandish account was the sunglasses-clad scientist/flamboyant fashionista Dr. Lorca, who joined us for both dinner and a bout of Islander observation as we took in the curious customs of the Blood Island natives (customs which progressed from feverish dancing and indiscriminant making out to, finally, animal sacrifice… natch).

From there, things only got more spooky, murky, and suspicious. I’ll spare you the details, and I won’t delve too deep into the dark secrets we uncovered during our stay with “The Mad Doctor Of Blood Island” (as I highly recommend you take a trip to the Island yourself, should you ever get the chance), but, suffice to say, a funky, freaky-deaky, gory good time was ultimately had by all. Dr. Lorca’s experiments regarding “chlorophyll poisoning” were revealed to have less-than-stable and downright mutagenic results, while Dr. Foster’s own medical interests were soon supplanted by amateur excursions into clumsy karate and even a shocking dabbling in graverobbery. Carlos’ relationship with his morbid-minded mother and the childhood girl of his dreams reached heights of melodrama (and even steamy sensuality) that I don’t suppose he ever suspected would arise, and he ultimately found that his bloodline had played an even more important role in the current state of the Island than anyone would’ve believed. Best of all, Sheila ultimately made everyone on the Island very happy when she finally doffed her top and got down ‘n’ dirty with her meat-headed boy-toy out in the open for all to see.

I reiterate my earlier assertion: hommina, hommina, hommina!

In the end, my journey to Blood Island this time was fantastically fruitful, introducing me to imaginative and insane, utterly out-there oddball ideas. Furthermore, there were no shortages evident in either the sex or violence departments, and gratuitous, convoluted helpings of deviant behavior in both, as well as in scientific thought and even familial relationships, abounded. Disembowelments, decapitations, and dismemberments stood hand-in-severed-hand alongside with hissing snakes, roaring flames, overgrown sideburns, dungeon-dwelling rejects, machete-twirling chrome-domed doofuses, and some truly gooey, gleefully ghastly, grisly and grotesque merry monster gross-outs. When the Green-Blooded Ones revealed themselves to our vacationing party at large, they proved an enormously memorable presence, all gaunt, rotten, and lumpy, dripping with jade-colored slime, like scum-puking hollow-eyed psycho-ghouls brought forth from the id of some uniquely warped brain-damaged weirdo. “Hideous zombies lusting for bizarre human pleasures!” Indeed.

At times, this expedition’s sun-burnt atmosphere, its leisurly paced, gradually unraveling mysteries, and its profuse provisions of no-reason nudity and unrepentant cheapjack splatter reminded me of the times I had spent with Lucio Fulci’s “Zombie” on Matool, or with a nefarious nazi scientist’s weaponized bacteria, provocatively nicknamed “The Flesh Eaters,” an adventure which is doubly worthy of mention due to the fact that it came about in large part due to the contributions of Arnold Drake, who co-created such cult DC comic book favorites as The Doom Patrol, Deadman, and Stanley & His Monster.

When all was said and done, the memories “The Mad Doctor Of Blood Island” left me with would become forever tinted with the distinct flavor of nostalgic, not-so-innocent, tacky trash-bag fun. Were these events merely the summarized plot points of some obscure slab of cult cinema schlock, as opposed to real life occurrences which yours cruelly experienced first-hand during the globe-trotting exploits of a long and legendary life, I would admittedly have to characterize said motion picture definitively as an iconic, idiosyncratic, outrageously lurid must-see drive-in z-movie the likes of which either Herschel Gordon Lewis or even Ed Wood could equally be proud of.

But, of course, my memories of Blood Island are hardly the work of fiction, as evidenced by the vial that rests to this day on my souvenir shelf. For, when I left Blood Island, the other survivors and myself came together to form a secret society, which I tell you about now only because I know you can be trusted to keep this revelation clandestine. Right?

Riiiiight.

Anyway, as I was saying, having participated in one of the most incredible adventures to ever take place on even the admittedly adventure-prone getaway that is Blood Island, yours cruelly and his travelling companions ended our journey with a discovery, that being the unorthodox manner in which one might protect him or herself from both the wrath of the Green-Blooded Ones as well as the inherent danger that one might possibly transform into a Green-Blooded One themself. And, so, that day, as we left Blood Island, we distributed the vaccine, derived from the very vitae that the Green-Blooded Ones were so named for, amongst ourselves, and took the following oath:

“I, a living, breathing creature of the cosmic entity, am now ready to enter the realm of those chosen to be allowed to drink of the Mystic Emerald fluids herein offered. I join the Order Of Green Blood with an open mind and through this liquid’s powers am now prepared to safely view the unnatural green-blooded ones without fear of contamination.”

Thus was born the Order Of Green Blood, with yours truly serving as a charter member. And though the vial of which I partook that day promised to keep me safe from the ravages of the Green-Blooded Ones forever, I thought it best to keep a spare serving around… just in case.

Also, it makes an excellent addition to any souvenir shelf, really! For, of all the expeditions I’ve made to the enchantingly strange shores of Blood Island, it was this particular trip which, though not as smoothly realized as perhaps some of my other adventures there, remains my personal favorite. My memories of “The Mad Doctor Of Blood Island” are easy my most cherished Blood Island memories to date.

At least, until next I step foot on those bizarre beaches. Here’s hoping that my next vacation there will occur soon. Who knows? Maybe next time you can join me. I think you’d dig it. I know I would.

Excelsior!

- Wilhelm Screem, The Werewolf Of The Comic Shop

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In addition to contributing to The Bloodsprayer, Count Wilhelm Screem XIII, the self-titled "Werewolf Of The Comic Shop," is also the moldy, morbid, macabre monster mind behind the image-blog Werewolf's Meal Inc, a creepy cavalcade of horror comics, heavy metal, scream queens, spook shows, and random related rot.

One Response to “review: The Mad Doctor Of Blood Island (1968)”

  1. That’s one beautiful poster. Special releasing should come with a promotional video and pamphlet for tourism on Blood Island.

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