Horror has made Dracula and vampires glamorous over the years, just look at Twilight making three billion dollars worldwide. Vampires are deadly, mean creatures that live in the darkness and feed upon human blood. Not in a sexual way either, as you've seen on shows like TrueBlood. The facts of the real Dracula are frightening and disturbing but no one seems to know anything about Elizabeth Bathory, also known as "The Countess of Blood". A woman who was quite vicious, and showed no mercy to the virgins and maids that she ate and killed.
Elizabeth Bathory holds the Guinness World Record for the most prolific female murderer and most prolific murderer of the western world. Elizabeth was a countess in Hungary. Her story spanned from 1585-1610. Elizabeth's royalty in Hungary kept people from suspecting that she could be so evil and deadly. How did her obsession for blood begin? One day, a maid was brushing Countess Elizabeth's hair and by mistake hurt her. Elizabeth slapped the maid in the face proceeding to get blood on her hand. This was when she began to think that blood was the answer to immortality, a way for her to preserve her young skin which resulted in her eventually killing between 80 - 650 young women. It's quite a jump between numbers because of the witnesses, and their fear of The Countess.
This was one of Elizabeth's favorites, using the Iron Madden which was hung from the ceiling with a bathtub underneath it to catch all the blood so Elizabeth could carry on her ritual of bathing in blood. Her other torture method's would include jamming needles and pins underneath the nails of the people she killed, covering them in honey to be attacked by bees and ants, and she would also bite chunks of flesh from her victims. There is one incident that is of great horror - she forced one of her victims to cook and eat her own flesh.
She sounds vicious, right? Why don't we see movies about her as often as Dracula? There have been a few such as:
- Elizabeth 1998 - boring shares too much back story and not enough of the truth.
Stay Alive 2006 - my personal favorite but not much about her tortures and life just there to be a scary face.
- Bathory: Countess of Blood 2008 - haven't seen it yet although I'm sure it's about the same - too much back story not enough truth.
I would really love to see a horror movie that shows more of the torturing aspect of it and small history clips. We have managed to create amazing movies like Friday the 13th, Halloween, and Nightmare on Elm Street. Brutal deaths but still comes full circle. Don't get me wrong Stay Alive had that touch to it, but the concept was "if you die in the game, you die in real life", which ends up looking like they're trying to make Sword Art Online in a way.
Vlad III enjoyed watching people suffer as they were impaled drinking their blood and eating their flesh though I feel Elizabeth was much more vicious. She would torture her victims herself, not watch them die from her castle window.
There are so many movies out there that suggest the work of real serial killers, Elizabeth's story would really make a great horror movie. Especially if they used her story in modern time. I believe Elizabeth Bathory is the real first vampire, who enjoyed torment, torture and had a lust for blood that turned her into a true monster.