Midnight Monster Movies. Is there anything better in the world than a passionate horror host with a paltry budget bringing the horror love to the people? Yeah, there probably is—but you gotta admit that monster movie hosts are Real Horrorshow. One such host is Columbus Ohio’s own Doctor Bob Tesla. His Midnight Monster Movies feature a dizzying array of sound, spectacle, audience interaction, and general horrific whimsy. Luckily for us, he’s also a witty guy, and was kind enough to answer a few of our most pressing inquiries.
WLF/ZZN: Hey Doctor Bob, thanks for the interview. Fans know you as the host of Midnight Monster Movies with Doctor Bob Tesla. Tell us all about it.
I am taking time away from my very important experiments to talk to you, young lady! If Igor gets killed by one of them while I am doing this, it is your fault. Midnight Monster Movies with Dr. Bob is at the Grandview Theatre in Columbus, Ohio. I show a free monster movie at midnight on the second Saturday of each month. I have about fifteen to thirty minutes before that where I show classic sci-fi & horror trailers or other bits like the Dr. Who theme played on a theremin.
WLF/ZZN: You are the brother of fames scientist and David Bowie character Nikola Tesla. Do you ever feel like you’re in his shadow?
HAH! He is brain in tank, da! Now he is in MY shadow! I was the smarter brother but he stole my ideas. You heard of the famous Tesla Coil? I invented it! I was going to call it the Tesla Coil. Regardless of our rivalry, we are both way smarter than Edison and his lot. Alternating Current!
WLF/ZZN: Please tell us how you were forced to host free scary movies?
The theater flooded last fall and one of my experiments caused it … they said! It was Igor’s fault! But now the theater owners say I can’t have my lab in the basement without doing this as my rent. So now I have to “earn my keep” and I can’t even charge people! I have to show these movies free! Can you believe this? I have to pay for my experiments, feed my brother his fish flakes and provide for the Nurse and Igor AND it takes time away from me doing science! Just like this interview is.
WLF/ZZN: What kind of horror fans might we find at one of your shows?
We have a wide range of horror fans. They all have an affinity for the old classics. “Attack of the Saucer Men,” “Invasion of the Body Snatchers,” “War of the Worlds” – We all pretend that Tom Cruise one never happened. (WLF note: But for the sucky ending **spoiler alert, the son should have died** I thought the remake was scary and good)
WLF/ZZN: Is it true that your shows sometimes feature actual filmmakers, live music, 3-D spectacle, and delightful interludes?
Yes! Our May 12th show, “Terror from Beneath the Earth,” will feature a short from a local director that stars an actress who was in The Avengers. They will be there and do a Q&A during the intermission. Our July 14th show, “Attack of the Moon Zombies,” will have director Christopher R. Mihm on hand for a Q&A after the movie. Our special October 13th show will be a 3-D screening of the classic horror “Nosferatu” with a live band!
I’m not sure about the “delightful” interludes but sometimes by creations do escape the basement. It’s usually a fun time for everyone but Igor. After the show, I usually need two things: A new Igor and a tombstone for the old one.
WLF/ZZN: Midnight Monster Movies does not always show zombie movies. Why would anyone want to watch a movie that’s not about a zombie?
Monsters come in all different shapes and sizes. Why discriminate against the monster? He can’t help the way he was born … or how the scientist made him. Why would you be so prejudiced? Zombies are part of the rainbow community of monsters. Of course, the rainbow in this case is levels of grey in a black & white movie. Zombies would probably be a dark grey. What were we talking about?
WLF/ZZN: Nosferatu is almost a zombie, which makes him pretty cool. Do you enjoy a special relationship with Orlock?
What have you heard? I have no time for relationships! Science is my only mistress!
WLF/ZZN: Attack of the Moon Zombies is a pretty big deal, and is winning awards. Have you seen it yet?
Not yet. I will see it at the show in July. I have seen the trailer multiple times before Midnight Monster Movies with Dr. Bob. It has a line that has become an audience favorite – “All Out Space Plant Zombie Attack.” They always laugh … I do not see why that is so funny. That is a serious problem to have!
WLF/ZZN: I question whether zombies have difficulty with interplanetary craft. Do you have any insights on this?
They couldn’t be worse than my “She-gor” at the April show. She got lost on the way to Mars but I found out she actually stopped for astronaut ice cream! Then she got shot down over Mars.
WLF/ZZN: Is there a particular zombie film that you’re especially stoked to share with your audience?
I have several independent directors with zombie films that I am talking with but nothing firm yet. Starting in October, I will be showing an old serial before the movie that features zombies but I do not want to give it away yet. It might scare too many people!
WLF/ZZN: I’m sure the demands of science are exhausting, but what else do you do with your time, Doctor Bob?
I am trying to get to the bottom of the mysterious sabotage that has been happening during my shows. After the last show, I found that the ground wire of the speakers had been cut and a note that read “Dr. E” was left behind! So now I’m having to be a … what is the word? I’m having to be a Scooby Doo to solve mysteries!
WLF/ZZN: How can fans reach you and/or find out what’s coming up next?
They can email me directly [email protected]
I take questions that have been emailed to me and answer them during the show. People can ask me science questions but instead they ask me about Nikola! You can keep up to date on our Facebook page and find pictures and videos of the shows.
WLF/ZZN: Do you have any advice for budding mad scientists out there?
Hire good help. Also, buy lots and lots of life insurance on your assistants. You will be going through many of them and if you can collect when they die, it can pay for the equipment!
WLF/ZZN: Thanks, Doctor Bob! If you haven’t checked out Doctor Bob’s Show, and/or are nowhere near Ohio, peep these vids!