Frazetta Man in his natural habitat.
Java Man. Peking Man.
Piltdown Man. Nebraska Man. Encino Man.
Our cousins or predecessors
. What were they like? What did they eat, where did they live, how did they behave? What dreams might they have had, what primal gods did they revere? The fact is, most pulp authors just do not do the research, and lump these worthies into a mass of savage, knuckle-dragging thugs
: Beast Man
Man. Frazetta Man
Named for the art of Frank Frazetta
, Frazetta Man is the generic subhuman native of the Lost World
. He most likely Wants Our Women
, and is prepared to pursue them across hundreds of miles of jungle and savanna. He is applied in hordes
, can rarely be reasoned with
, and basically exists to be triumphed over by Mighty Whitey
so the locals may be properly awed. Yes, Frazetta Man truly brings all kinds of Unfortunate Implications
to the table in this enlightened age.
Your basic Frazetta Man has the wiry build of a chimpanzee, though he is generally around human size if not larger. He'll be covered in hair (usually not fur) and will rarely wield any weapon more sophisticated than a knobkerrie
. Seldom if ever will females
or children of the species be seen, perhaps explaining his fixation on the Nubile Savage
in the Fur Bikini
His language, if he has progressed beyond the grunting stage, will be simple
, and his gods will exist primarily to excuse his bloodthirsty nature.
More intelligent species of Frazetta Man exist, physically little different but typically adorned in primitive jewelry and using weapons as advanced as swords or axes. Such varieties often function as Mooks
for the local Big Bad
, and may shade over into orcish
or Beast Man
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Film - Animated
Film - Live-Action
- The wendol, apparently relict Neanderthals, in Michael Crichton's The 13th Warrior.
- This applies more to the book. In the movie it is eventually discovered that the wendol are 100% human, just dressed in bearskins
- But they are described by one character as looking like the mating of a man and a beast, so are presumably intended to be a physically primative human.
- Trog! has the title character as such a being, though he's more sympathetic than most.
- One Million Years BC Features these hairy bipeds in a shadowy bit part.
- The Land that Time Forgot (a Burroughs adaptation—see below) and its sequel feature various forms of primitive humans from All Cavemen Were Neanderthals to these guys to recognizably modern humans.
- Moonwatcher and the gang from 2001: A Space Odyssey. They were just your ordinary Butt
Monkeys Apes of the savannah until the Sufficiently Advanced Alien artifact taught them basic tool-use and they learned how to fight off predators as a group and use weapons against rival tribes.
- Although it's intended (in-universe) to be an orc, the denuded skeleton which Frodo in Lord of the Rings trips over in Shelob's lair appears to be a chimpanzee's. This suggests that the movie series' orc designs owe more than a nod to this trope.
- This is way Older Than They Think. The medieval European folkloric image of a "woodwose", a primitive human living in the wilderness where the Christian civilization ends, has many similarities with the Frazetta man. Shaggy hair and beard, big club, naked or near-naked - it seems that the modern trope has more to do with the medieval woodwose than with any modern ideas from paleontology or anthropology. They were considered, however, not evil - just the antithesis to everything the civilization of that time stood for: urban life, feudalism, Christian faith and kings' laws. One of the Italian words for woodwose was huorco, which is one theory about where orcs got their name.
- The Chinese also had their own remarkably similar spin on the trope in the red-haired "Yeren", also called "wildman". Nowadays it's often considered to be a cryptid in the same vein as Bigfoot, Sasquatch and Yeti.
- In Brutal Legend, the Headbangers are a silly version of Frazetta Men. They are built like Neanderthals, and only know how to bang their heads against rocks for mining purposes, so they are used as slave labor without the need of bars and chains. The Hero then introduces them to Heavy Metal, and compels them to bang their heads for freedom instead. They gain intelligence as the story goes by, building cars and weapons.
- Common foes in the jungles of Quest for Glory III.
- During the third act of Titan Quest, set in Asia, there are plenty of Neanderthal enemies met on the mountains from Parthia to the Mongolian cliffs. They have both fighters and shamans, and sometimes they ride saber-tooth lions in battle. You also get to meet their warchief, who's a colossal Yerren.
- Some pokemon may be closer to us than you think. Look up a picture of an infernape. Now look very closely. What do you notice? (Hint:its the feet!)
- Homo heidelbergensis, an ancestor of both modern humans and neanderthals, stood at an average height of 1.8m (5'11") and an estimated weight of 100 kg (220 lbs.) In southern Africa numerous individuals have been found that surpassed heights of 2.1m (6'3"+.)