Offscreen Notes

David J. Skal (RIP, 1952-2024)

January 13th, 2024

Very sad to hear about the passing of film critic, historian and writer David J. Skal, who died on January 1, 2024, at the age of 71 (b. 1952). Skal was best remembered by those who knew him as a classic Monster Kid, someone who grew up watching broadcasts of the classic Universal horror films on television in the 1960s. Skal nurtured this love and passion of these films into a career as one of the most intelligent historians of this period. I still rate his second non-ficiton work The Monster Show: A Cultural History of Horror (1993) as one of the best books on the horror genre. Across his written works and frequent appearances on documentaries and physical media commentaries Skal helped us to realize how important fear in its artistic manifestations is to our understanding of human psychology and culture in general. 

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