Over the last year, dating apps have experienced increased traffic due to the pandemic keeping many of us at home. I personally have used dating apps on and off for years, and surprisingly I met my amazing boyfriend on one (Thanks, Hinge!). However, if you have ever used a dating app, you’re no stranger to the many disappointments that lurk in every corner of them. It has always amazed me that there aren’t more horror movies involving dating apps, because there is plenty of material there. While thinking about this, I thought to myself: what would some of our favorite horror villains be like if they were given the chance to frequent these apps? So here it is: the murderous men we all know and love, and their dating app personas if they existed in our world today.
Leatherface: The Clingy Stalker
While mindlessly swiping at work, a “New Match!” notification pops up. He messages you a cute intro right away and you begin talking. He seems so attentive, so eager to hear anything and everything about you, and he hasn’t sent you a dick pic yet, which is refreshing. He makes plans before you have to ask and he doesn’t make you question his interest. Finally, you found a transparent and vulnerable guy that actually cares!
On date day you put on your most flattering outfit and go into it with high hopes. When you arrive, it’s uncomfortable. He barely talks but can’t take his eyes off of you, you’re beyond unsettled, and you know it isn’t going to go anywhere. You feel like you’re the main course and not his spaghetti and meatballs. Once it ends you feel relieved that it’s all over and you retreat back to your bed with a glass of wine and a cheesy horror movie.
What you don’t know yet is that that cringe-worthy evening was the best date of his life. Before you even finish your wine or have the chance to unmatch him, he messages you about how wonderful everything was. You quickly unmatch, hoping he gets the hint. Nope, he just starts to find you in other arenas: Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, even LinkedIn. He even has the balls to friend your family members, which you find out when your confused grandmother calls you about a strange man who found her online. You confront him and tell him you’re just not interested and ask him to please back off. He replies, “You’re just so beautiful. I want to wear your skin so I can always be with you.” You rapidly block him everywhere and report his social media profiles, left with goosebumps and a creepy feeling.
Later that night, you hear a loud rumble from your yard. You peek outside to find him carving a heart with both of your initials in the middle of it with a CHAINSAW. He found your address through the Yellow Pages, because even in 2021 that’s shockingly still a viable resource. Well, guess what? Time to call the cops and find a new place. Thanks, Tinder!
Chucky: The Catfish
Like any brave single person, you’ve decided to dip your toes back into the dating pool. This time, match.com has its time to shine, because Tinder has proven itself to be a garbage fire of an option and maybe having to pay to use it will draw in higher caliber men. More power to you, let’s see who’s next! A few awkward conversations and sexist remarks later you’re about to cancel your membership. They’re literally all the same guys, just preying on women who feel single enough to pay for possible chemistry.
That’s when you stumble upon Charles. The seemingly perfectly painted freckles and striking red hair draw you in, and his bio seals the deal. He’s 6 foot 2, looking for a strong partner who makes him feel like a real man again, and hoping one day to have a wife and a son he can raise. If he has faults, he’s hiding them really well, and despite your hesitancy to feel optimistic, you do.
You decide to meet for casual drinks at a pub nearby and when you get there you see a 5 foot 10 red haired guy and decide it’s close enough to how he advertised himself. You start to walk up to him and are stopped by a very short, scrappy looking guy who knows your name. After a minute, you see a girl walk over to the taller red head, and it dawns on you: this is Charles.
Trying to convince yourself that you aren’t shallow, you stay the course for the date. Not only is he at least 2 feet shorter than he said he would be, his hair is wild and unkempt, he has a few scars on his face, and he asks you to call him Chucky. You politely sip a beer and check your phone every few moments, hoping for an out to no avail. Then the fun begins. Chucky has very quickly thrown back two glasses of hard liquor in the time you’ve sipped your beer, and it’s showing.
He starts to rant about his ex wife Tiffany, how crazy she was, and how her looks were the only reason he stuck around (her “huge tits” were a major selling point for him). Somehow you stuck it out for him to throw back four drinks and then you finally decide you’ve been polite enough throughout this nightmare and you get up to start to leave. Shooting his last shot and probably also realizing he’s not getting any tonight, Chucky grabs your butt and starts humping your leg like a dog. When you shake him off (because he really is that short), he screams about you being a bitch and bites your leg in front of everyone. The bartender has him kicked to the curb and grabs you a first aid kit. I guess paying for a dating app doesn’t make the dating pool any less dangerous.
Jason: Forever a Momma’s Boy
Let’s set the stage: you’re on a much-needed vacation in New Jersey on the gorgeous Crystal Lake. You’re with three of your best girlfriends, their boyfriends, and this guy they’re trying to set you up with. You made sure to pack all of the midriff-exposing tops, string bikinis, and cropped pajama sets you could need, and you are ready to relax. You’ve inactivated all of your dating apps for the time being, because maybe you’ll actually be into the guy your friends swear would be perfect for you. It sounds rom-com-ish, but it’s possible…right?
Two days in you come to the realization that maybe it’s possible for Sandra Bullock, but not for you, and not with this guy. He ‘s into your best friend who is on the trip with you, and his goal is to wait until she dumps her boyfriend and then pounce on that opportunity. The irony is the friend he is pining after is the same friend that thought you’d be a great match. Yuck.
One night, you’re having a girls night with your friends while the guys all camp elsewhere. In the middle of topless pillow fights and random make out sessions, they ask you why you haven’t found anyone. Not wanting to rehash the chainsaw wielding lunatic or the tiny terror, you dodge their questions. Little do you know, your one friend who pretended to go to the bathroom actually swiped your phone and reactivated your Bumble account. What’s more, she liked a whole mess of guys before sneaking your phone back to where it was.
In the middle of the night, a notification pops up that you have a new match on Bumble. Confused and tired, you open it and see Jason. He lives on the other side of Crystal Lake, loves the outdoors and long hikes, and has an adorable picture with his mom as his profile photo. He has the classic douchey guy holding a fish photo as well, but you decide to send a simple and nonchalant, “Hi,” anyway. You doze off again and an hour later you hear a ping. Jason messaged you back, “Hi, beautiful.” You start a conversation and before you know it you’ve stayed up all night tucked under the covers, messaging back and forth.
The next day you tell your friends about how weirdly Bumble was reactivated, but you actually met someone cool. They push and pry and ultimately beg you to invite him to the party they’re throwing at the cabin tonight. The thought crosses your mind that it could be weird, but let’s be honest: you’ve seen weirder by now. Reluctantly, you throw caution to the wind and invite him.
The night of the party, you wait anxiously for him to arrive. When he does, he’s a total catch, not to mention very tall which is a nice change. You notice throughout the night that he keeps texting someone. You peer over and see he’s texting his mom. A little liquid courage gives you the nerve to playfully ask why he’s talking to his mom on a date. He stiffens up and tells you about how he was always bullied and an outcast growing up, and his mom was the only one who showed him compassion. You feel sorry for bringing it up and move on. It’s good when a guy loves his mom…right?
After that, you begin to notice more weird things about Jason. Like how when your friend and her boyfriend snuck off to have sex in another room, he clenched his fists and twitched noticeably. Or like how he keeps picking up the cheese knife and just…holding it menacingly? You can also hear a slight “ch ch ch ah ah ah” sound he keeps making under his very loud mouth breathing.
Before you have a chance to nicely ask him to leave, a woman barges in through the front door, screaming, “JASON!!!” It’s his fucking mom, Pamela, and if you thought Jason was crazy, buckle up for this one. She grabs him, cradles his head against her bosom, and starts panicking about having lost him. The psychopath grabs the same wimpy cheese knife he kept fawning over and points it at everyone, threatening to use it if anyone takes Jason away from her. It’s obvious that Jason is terrified of her, but also that this is a regular occurrence. Not to mention he never stopped holding her hand, appearing like a gigantic, tall baby. In a flash she grabs her son and drags him out of the cabin door. You might have had the control with Bumble letting you message him first, but his mom definitely has total control of him.
Wow, these were A LOT of fun to write for you guys. I had a bit of a flair for the dramatic when crafting these short stories, but don’t all good horror movies share that same sentiment? I hate to admit it, but I have met a lot of these types of guys through dating apps over the years (minus the whole murderous, psychotic aspect). Let me know if you enjoyed this segment and if you want me to tackle any others in upcoming Sunday Scaries. Also, vote in the comments on if you want part two of male horror villains or should we delve into the world of female horror villains?