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Monster Gallery: Mimic (1997)

Mimic Terrors

Mimic on set.

“Nature is a strange thing, I learned. You learn that very clearly when you work in a museum. You realize how nature uses the art of camouflage.”
-Donald A. Wollheim, Mimic

The original Mimic short story, signed by horror literature author Donald A. Wollheim and published in 1950, was widely different in both plotline and tone to Guillermo Del Toro’s 1997 feature film. The story narrates, from a first person perspective, the memories of a man — who remains unnamed — regarding a grotesque and mysterious ‘man in a black coat’ in his neighbourhood. The final part of the story sees the protagonist at last investigating the cloaked man’s apartment after hearing screams and heavy breathing sounds. He is found dead, on the floor — apparently still wearing his ‘black cloak’. Analyzing its appearance further, however, they discover the frightening truth: the ‘man in the black coat’ was not a man, but rather a gigantic insect, evolved to camouflage itself among humans — mimicking their appearance.

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