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I Was a Teenage Wereskunk: 2016 Monster Movie Homage

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BY October 9, 2020
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If you’re going to call yourself a horror aficionado, then you can’t just survive on modern flicks alone. You have to familiarize yourself with the classics. And I don’t just mean Hammer horror or James Whale, although those are obviously essential. I’m talking about the 50s monster movies, the ones that clearly influenced 2016’s I Was a Teenage Wereskunk. It’s a monster movie in the vein of classics like the Michael Landon-starrer I Was a Teenage Werewolf.

Yes, I Said I Was a Teenage Wereskunk

It’s the early 60s. Curtis (Scott Monahan) is your average red-blooded all-American teen boy. He’s a high school athlete, he likes that kooky rock and roll, and he’s interested in girls. Very interested. Specifically, he likes his friend Mary Beth (Shey Lyn Zanotti), but he doesn’t know how to tell her.

But his interest in girls and sex isn’t limited to Mary Beth, which gets him in trouble. One night, when he’s trying to peep on another lady, something magical (and smelly) happens. Curtis encounters an enchanted skunk. And as skunks do, even the non-enchanted kind, it sprays him.

However, unlike encounters with regular skunks, which just leave people and animals reeking, Curtis will have a different experience. Every time he’s feeling amorous, he will transform into a human-skunk hybrid. In other words, a wereskunk. Chaos and stinky terror ensue.

So Who’s Responsible for All This Wereskunkery?

Neil McLaughlin is the writer and director of I Was a Teenage Wereskunk. Although he’s from York, Maine, he’s now based in Los Angeles. I Was a Teenage Wereskunk is his first full-length feature, after the short Mental Distortion. McLaughlin has another movie, Hillhead, in post-production. However, McLaughlin is primarily a writer. In addition to movies, he writes books. His novel work includes the YA books The Girl in the Coppertone Ad and The Sunshine Ward.

Monahan went on to become a regular on the Facebook Watch series Turnt. Zanotti, who has appeared in Florence + the Machine videos, will next be seen in Hillhead. Other cast members include Clayton Rohner. The character actor, who has 84 credits to his name, has played on shows like Ozark and Bluff City Law since they made I Was a Teenage Wereskunk.

The Malt Shop produced the film, while WOWNow Entertainment handled distribution.

What’s Everyone Saying about I Was a Teenage Wereskunk?

With a movie with such an objectively silly title and premise, you might think it would turn off viewers. However, the people who made this movie so clearly love its inspirations and you can see that love in the film itself. This movie might be bad, but in a “so bad it’s good” way. It’s fun and viewers respond to that.

While there were a few negative outliers, most viewers have given the movie positive reviews. They say it’s cheesy and campy, but really funny at the same time. In fact, that’s the attribute they mention most often. While it’s supposed to be a horror-comedy, the movie apparently leans on the comedy more than the horror. The horror is more cartoonish than gory, by the way. (Despite the silly antics, though, this is not a film for children.)

I Was a Teenage Wereskunk is available on demand on Roku – sign up and watch it on HorrorMax TV!

featured image via All Season Lawn Care Productions and The Malt Shop

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Salomé Gonstad is a freelance writer who grew up in the swampy wilds of south Alabama. She now splits her time between the Appalachian wilds (of Alabama) and the considerably more refined streets of New York City. When she's not yelling about pop culture on the internet, she's working on a supernatural thriller about her hometown. Also, we're pretty sure she's a werewolf.

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