by: Dr. Boogie
You thought you were safe from Lovecraftian horrors just because you steered clear of New England? You thought you wouldn't have to worry about being murdered by fish-eyed horrors on your trip to Europe? Ha! Little did you know we've been exporting Cthulhu Mythos for decades!
In Dagon, Wall Street yuppie Paul and his friends run into some trouble when their boat runs aground off the coast of the small fishing village of Imboca. Unfortunately, the locals are less interested in helping fix their boat than they are in sacrificing them to the titular sea god who's been rewarding them with gold and grotesque tentacle limbs in equal measure for years. Paul finds some help in Ezekiel, the last fully-human person in town, but they're both kind of bumbling idiots.
Pretty soon, the two of them have been captured and chained up in an old tannery filled with dried-out human skin. What could that mean...
Hmm, still not getting it.
Kind of getting an idea now... no, it's gone.
Wait, is it too late to agree to worship your gross fish god? It is? Damn.
Paul, having guessed closest to the price of that lovely flaying knife set without going over, has the honor of watching his hobo friend get skinned alive.
And you would think that the prospect of having your skin cut off would dampen his spirits, especially given that he was doing just fine until Paul convinced him to rebel against the fishy townsfolk, but Ezekiel remains defiant to the end. He and Paul even start reciting some psalms together, although Zeke does let up when they start pulling his face off.
Then it's less, "Though I may walk through the valley of the shadow of death," and more, "Auugh, auugh!!"
Paul tries to carry on, but it's hard to stay on point when you're looking at your friend's exposed neck fat. The one saving grace here is that Paul lost his glasses a while back, so he's probably just getting the vague impression of Zeke dying a gruesome death.
Then they give him John Travolta's face and the movie really starts to get weird.
No but seriously, he is dead. It's hard to pinpoint the exact second he dies after they roll his face back like a fleshy hoodie, but it comes sometime before they start cutting the skin off his back.
Yeah, it's gross, but Paul just watched the guy's face getting cut off, so some largely off camera back skinning isn't enough to stop him from finishing his prayer. Seems kind of pointless now. He'd be much better off just thinking of face-related puns. "Talk about losing face," he could have quipped, or how about, "That's a serious about-face!" Maybe something like, "He must've been an understudy for Dirk Benedict!" That one would probably take some explaining since they probably don't get A-Team re-runs in rural Spain.
And just like Gretzky's jersey, they hang Ezekiel's skin on the wall in honor of Imboca's best, most efficient town drunk. He will be missed.
I'd like to go back to what I was saying earlier about all the dried-out human skin: supposedly, these disgusting mutant fish people have been skinning people as sacrifices to Dagon for decades, so why aren't they any better at tanning? Skinning, sure, they've really nailed down the process of removing faces as though they weren't attached to muscles or anything like that, but their finished products all look like they got them in bulk from Leatherface.
He had an excuse, guys! He was a psychopath living in rural Texas and didn't have anyone to teach him about liming! You've been at it for way longer than him and you're supposed to be doing this to impress Dagon. You think he's impressed by your papery, dried-out skin suits!? He's a demigod who's lived for thousands of years!
All I'm saying is they need to work harder to earn those fish and exotic fishman jewelry they've been getting.
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