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THE BLOOD ON SATAN’S CLAW (1971) – Episode 148 – Decades of Horror 1970s

“I am ready to return, but understand, I shall use undreamed-of measures, to conquer the evil.” If by “undreamed-of measures” the Judge means a BF sword, he ain’t wrong. No one dreamed of it. Join your faithful Grue Crew – Doc Rotten, Chad Hunt, Bill Mulligan, Daphne Monary-Ernsdorff, and Jeff Mohr – as they claw their way through the folk horror classic, The Blood on Satan’s Claw(1971).

Decades of Horror 1970s
Episode 148 – The Blood on Satan’s Claw (1971)

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In 17th century England, the children of a village slowly convert into a coven of devil worshipers.


The Blood on Satan’s Claw is frequently mentioned alongside Witchfinder General (1968) and The Wicker Man (1973) as a seminal film in the folk horror subgenre. Daphne describes it as super 70s and she loved the creepiness of the woods and the environment. The film’s amazing title captured Bill’s attention but unfortunately, his first viewing of The Blood on Satan’s Claw was a version in which an essential scene had been cut. Having since seen the complete version, he believes it to be an interesting film worth seeking out. For Chad, The Blood on Satan’s Claw had some unique ideas, in particular how the demon was reconstructed. Jeff found The Blood on Satan’s Claw to be quirky and the story to be a bit uneven but he thought the effects were excellent, especially when some devil’s skin was removed from one of the characters. Doc finds The Blood on Satan’s Claw to be very disjointed, making it hard to tell the protagonist from the antagonist and to stay interested.

Whether you’re a fan or not, you owe it to yourself to check out The Blood on Satan’s Claw. As of this writing, it is available to stream on Shudder and will be available on physical media as a part of ALL THE HAUNTS BE OURS: A COMPENDIUM OF FOLK HORROR [BLU-RAY BOX SET] due from Severin Films in December 2021.

Gruesome Magazine’s Decades of Horror 1970s is part of the Decades of Horror two-week rotation with The Classic Era and the 1980s. In two weeks, the next episode in their very flexible schedule will be Dario Argento’s The Cat o’ Nine Tails (1971), chosen by Bill! Be sure to join us for that one. 

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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.