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The lurid allure of ‘Lore’

Written By | Sep 24, 2017

WASHINGTON, September 24, 2017 — “Lore” is one of the best podcasts available that’s centered on the strange and the macabre. Consider the story about a string of unsolved, early 20th century murders. In each case, entire families were annihilated by a hatchet-wielding madman. The one creepy and consistent clue connecting these despicable crimes was the killer’s compulsion to cloak every mirror in each murder house.

A penny dreadful dedicated to Spring-Heeled Jack.

Or how about the story of the creature known as Spring-Heeled Jack that terrorized London in early Victorian England? The fiend wore a cape, had glowing red eyes, claws for hands and expelled blue and white flames from his mouth.

The Duke of Wellington.

No less a personage than the Duke of Wellington, famous for defeating Napoleon Bonaparte at the Battle of Waterloo in 1815, ordered his servants to load his pistols and slide them into his saddle holsters before riding into the dark and foggy night in search of the beast.

And there’s the tale of Robert the Haunted Doll, given to Florida artist Robert Eugene Otto when he was a young boy by the family’s voodoo-practicing Bahamian servant. Neighbors claim to have seen the cloth-stuffed figure walking from room to room when the Otto family was away from home.

Recently, Robert (the doll) miraculously survived the fury of Hurricane Irma while ensconced inside his glass enclosure at the Fort East Martello Museum in Key West, Florida.

Fort East Martello Museum, home of Robert the haunted doll.

These are just a few of the tall tales told tantalizingly by Aaron Mahnke on his award-winning podcast “Lore.”

According to Mahnke, the stories that populate this bimonthly podcast were originally intended for a five-chapter e-book. “But, most people don’t have the time to sit down and read actual text on a page/screen. It’s a sad state of the world when people don’t have time to read,” Mahnke wrote in his blog.

So Mahnke began regaling his podcast audience with bizarre and mystifying stories in 2015, accompanied by the ghostly music of composer and pianist Chad Lawson.

“I’m welcoming listeners into another world, a world that’s sitting right behind our own, one that feels both comforting and frightening. Give me your imagination and less than twenty minutes, and I’ll take you somewhere, teach you something, and entertain you,” says Mahnke.

Now, the producers of “The Walking Dead” and “X-Files” have joined with the creative folks at Amazon Studios to bring “Lore” to on-line, streaming television screens this October. Friday the 13th to be exact.

“Throughout history, fear was best kept buried, sealed, closed,” says Mahnke in a video promoting Amazon Prime’s adaptation of his podcast. “But folklore has a way of keeping the door open wide, allowing stories to live and breathe, to creep inside and haunt us.”

“Lore” reminds us, as Edgar Allan Poe said, “Invisible things are the only realities.”

Remember: “Lore” begins streaming on Amazon Prime October 13th. Just in time for Halloween.


Steven M. Lopez

Originally from Los Angeles, Steven M. Lopez has been in the news business for more than thirty years. He made his way around the country: Arizona, the Bay Area and now resides in South Florida.