Yes, but are eldritch horrors furry?
Furry fans who have long been debating whether Cthulhu, Shub-Niggurath, Nyarlarathotep, and the other often-squiddly “indescribable horrors” of author H.P. Lovecraft’s dark imagination count as “furry”, will find their arguments heating up in October when the animated feature Howard Lovecraft and the Frozen Kingdom is released in Canada.
Howard Lovecraft and the Frozen Kingdom, written, directed and produced by Sean Patrick O’Reilly and currently in production by Arcana Studios, to be distributed by The Shout! Factory (a company known more for its DVD releases than for theatrical distribution), is adapting the movie from the popular comic book written by Bruce Brown and illustrated by Renzo Podesta. It was reprinted as a 96-page trade paperback by Arcana in February 2010 that is still in print.
Based loosely upon the life of horror author Howard Phillips Lovecraft (1890-1937) and elements of his works, the movie is briefly summarized as:
After visiting his father in Arkham Sanitarium, young Howard Lovecraft ignores his father's warning and uses the legendary Necronomicon to open a portal to a strange, frozen world filled with horrifying creatures and grave danger. Alone and scared, Howard befriends a hideous creature he names Spot who takes him to the castle of the king where he is captured and sentenced to death.
“Spot” is a horrible Shuggoth named Thu Thu Hmong, pronounced (unpronounceable), who young Howard just calls Spot. Besides Arkham Sanitarium (in Lovecraft’s fictional Arkham, Massachusetts, the site of Miskatonic University and other key elements in HPL’s Cthulhu Mythos) and the “Necronomicon”, the pre-Muslim book of evil spells by the mad Arab Abdul Alzhared – reading it will drive you mad, too – the movie is filled with other HPL references. The frozen kingdom is the Kingdom of R’yleh, ruled by King Alzhared. The movie – or rather, the graphic novel – has been described by Publisher's Weekly as:
The latest in the fertile field of Lovecraft spinoffs follows a young Howard, aka H.P. Lovecraft, through an adventure in a dangerous netherworld. The plot takes elements of Lovecraft's actual childhood, including his father's nervous breakdown, and uses them to introduce readers to tropes in Lovecraft's work. […] Although marketed for all ages, the book will likely appeal more to younger readers, who should find the plot's twists and turns and the young protagonist appealing. Older readers and hardcore Lovecraft fans may be put off by the juvenile dialogue and some of the panels that play up the cuteness, rather than the horror, of the story.
So, are Shuggoths furry? Look at Spot and decide for yourselves.