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THE BRAINIAC (El barón del terror, 1962) – Episode 138 – Decades of Horror: The Classic Era

“Possibly the murderer used an electric drill. I say this because the person who did it was quite skilled. Just look at these two orifices.” Okay. Watch out for a killer with skill at orifices. Join this episode’s Grue-Crew – Chad Hunt, Daphne Monary-Ernsdorff, Jeff Mohr, and guest host Ralph Miller – as they check out this Mexican classic while managing to evade the vengeance delivered by The Brainiac (1962).

Decades of Horror: The Classic Era
Episode 138 – The Brainiac (1962)

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In 1661 Mexico, Baron Vitelius is sentenced to be burned alive by the Holy Inquisition of Mexico. As he dies, the Baron swears vengeance against the descendants of the Inquisitors. 300 years later, he returns as a horrible, brain-eating monster to enact his vengeance.

The Brainiac is Ralph’s pick. He’d always been intrigued by that weird thing he’d seen in images from the film and knew there had to be a crazy movie there. He also thought it would make for a fun discussion and he was right.

Daphne had seen the Rifftrax treatment of The Brainiac so appreciates watching this fun and ridiculous movie “straight” for the first time. She loves the atmosphere and the mid-century furniture and clothing. What really gets to her, though, is when the Baron eats unrefrigerated brains! 

Once Chad saw the hands on the poster as little hairy butts, he was gone. He goes so far as to call The Brainiac the weirdest movie he’s ever seen, and that’s saying a lot. The story’s two police officers, looking like they’re straight out of a Little Rascals episode, just happen to show up at the Baron’s abode with flame throwers. For him, it’s a fun movie. The translation and dubbing in The Brainiac remind Jeff of El Santo and Blue Demon movies, becoming another part of the entertainment.

If you have a hankering to see The Brainiac, also known as El barón del terror, you can stream it from hoopla, tubi, and PlutoTV.

Ralph Miller, the Grue Crew’s guest host, was a special effects artist in the 1980s and early 1990s. To hear more about Ralph’s work and experiences check out these episodes where we discuss Ralph’s work with him:

Correction: While discussing the Classic Horror Movie Channel, Jeff mentions watching “The Man with the Atomic Brain” on the streaming channel. In reality, the film was Creature with the Atom Brain (1955). He apologizes for the error. 

Gruesome Magazine’s Decades of Horror: The Classic Era records a new episode every two weeks. Up next in their very flexible schedule, as chosen by Daphne, will be The Deadly Bees (1966), an Amicus production directed by Freddie Francis. 

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To each of you from each of them, “Thank you so much for listening!

Jeff Mohr
Jeff lives smack dab in the middle of the cornfields of Iowa and is a long-time horror fan. His first remembered encounters with the genre were The Wizard of Oz, Tarzan gorilla chases, and watching the first broadcast of The Twilight Zone episode, "An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge." While he now qualifies as an old fart, he strives to be an Old Boy. Paraphrasing Robert Bloch, he has the heart of a small boy. He keeps it in a jar on his desk. Jeff has written for and SQ Horror Magazine. He currently writes for Gruesome Magazine and is a co-host of the Decades of Horror podcasts - The Classic Era, 1970s, and 1980s - and the Gruesome Magazine Podcast.