Mountaintop Madman Massacre

When you’re in the woods and a bigfoot unexpectedly crosses your path, there’s only three options available: run, submit or fight. What would you do?

In David Irons’s latest book The Bloody Tracks of Bigfoot, a character doesn’t run or submit to the eight-foot-tall beast. Astonishingly, he accepts the challenge before him. “Okay, asshole,” said tough guy Tony Reynolds. “Let’s go.”

The resulting fight was insane. Reynolds had been a Hollywood stuntman for a long time and there was no way he was gonna lose a fight to a goddamn freaky bigfoot. Wrote Irons: “Even though it towered over him and was a greater foe than any man he had ever fought, there wasn’t a bone in Reynolds’ body that was going to back down.”

Implausible as it might seem, the wily stuntman kept his adversary on its toes. Reynolds was a tough bastard, all right. “He was true Hollywood tough guy tough.” The writing in these four chapters is very good—simultaneously violent and humorous in equal parts. You could (maybe) call it Tarantino-esque.

Even though the cryptid was enormous, it wasn’t quick or agile. That helped Reynolds gain an advantage. With muscle memory culled from an old B-movie kung fu flick, the stuntman was able to dodge the beast’s sharpened claws and deliver a barrage of well-placed kicks and debilitating punches. When the giant bigfoot went down, Reynolds arrogantly blew a snot rocket toward the prone figure. “Just another furry pussy,” he said dismissively.

Reynolds was in the mountains of Oregon helping a crew shoot a low-budget independent horror film. It was the golden age of gory slasher flicks (the 80s) and everyone in Hollywood was looking to make a quick buck at the box office. This effort was going to be called Mountaintop Madman Massacre.  

But when a bigfoot family was discovered nearby, the original film was scrapped. Director Rob Lieberman decided to make a documentary instead. It would be a film that transcended celluloid, he thought, something that would change the world forever. Lieberman felt like he would go down in history as the man who clearly captured bigfoot on camera. There would be no denying the creature’s existence—the director was confident that he could bring home the Grand Guignol of bigfoot films.

What happened next was a grubby spoof of Hollywood wannabes and has-beens. The director’s dream of cinema verité quickly becomes a nightmare reality. With each death captured on celluloid, his grip on sanity unspooled. Life behind the lens desensitized him to what was in front of it. By the end of the novel, Lieberman was completely complicit in the mountaintop massacre.

No spoilers from me, but only one person from the film crew makes it to the last chapter. Everyone, even the lone survivor, experiences a shocking comeuppance. The Bloody Tracks of Bigfoot doesn’t suffer moviemaking fools lightly.

[The Bloody Tracks of Bigfoot / By David Irons / First Printing: August 2021 / ISBN: 9798454467999]