Listen to the episode here
Matthew: Okay. Hello! This is, uh, this is Death By Monsters, a podcast about monsters, mysteries and the unexplained, of course. My name's Matthew Jude and uh... welcome. Thanks for stopping by. First episode. I'm joined by Paula Deming.
Paula: Hello. I'm Paula.
Matthew: [laughs] I pause for dramatic effect. And, and Nick Murphy.
Nick: Hey, what's up? No stop.
Matthew: That was very quick. How are you by the way, guys? Hello. Nice to see you. This is the first episode of the podcast. How's it going?
Paula: I mean, we just started, so it's hard to say.
Nick: Yeah, cautiously optimistic. We'll put it that way.
Matthew: Yeah. I mean, it's better than how I feel if I'm perfectly honest. So [00:01:00] I thought the best way to start this new venture of our lives would be to talk about my favorite cryptid of all time: old Harry himself, Bigfoot. How do you feel about Bigfoot? Anyone got any thoughts?
Paula: Uh, yeah, I have some thoughts
Matthew: --but I know how Nick feels about Bigfoot, but we'll get into that. How do you feel about Bigfoot?
Paula: I'm pretty certain that Bigfoot is just bears. That people see bears.
They see them in the distance. They see them like walking on hind legs as sometimes happens. And they are convinced that it's Bigfoot, but it's actually just a bear.
Matthew: Nick, how do you feel about Bigfoot? I know it's almost exactly the same answer.
Nick: Pretty much just exactly the same, like every word is right and correct that Paula said. Yeah, I think it's, I think it's just bears. I think people have been trying very hard to find Bigfoot and so they're finding anything they can to like, try to justify their belief in Bigfoot. I feel like if they are really searching that hard, they would have found him by now at this [00:02:00] point, like, you know, I understand that he's elusive, but like someone would have found it by now.
Matthew: Later on I'm going to talk about possibly why you are both wrong, but for now, for now, I'm going to try and not bore everyone with the stuff we all know. So I'll just say that some people, me included, believe in a big bipedal ape that lives in the woods. There are stories and myths about these animals from all over the planet with almost every culture across the globe, having a name for it.
The name I will be using is Bigfoot. Don't want to get into evolutionary genealogy and all that, but I will say that I think it’s possibly some kind of Dryopithecus rather than a Gigantopithecus for a bunch of reasons. None of which we have time--
Paula: I have no idea what any of that means.
Matthew: If you haven't heard of Bigfoot, I don't know what to tell you.
Paula: So every culture has a Cinderella story, right? We learned that in school, every culture has a version of the Cinderella story. Does that mean that Cinderella was [00:03:00] real? Podcast over, I win.
Matthew: If her shoes weren’t the right size, why did they fall off? That's another question you might have.
Because this is one thing that I have a strange relationship with.
Yes. I love the paranormal. The weird, the strange, the wonderful, all that good and crazy stuff. But when it comes to Bigfoot, I don't think we need to add any thing paranormal to it at all. I already think that if it's true, it's amazing and that you don't need to add any weird, high strange stuff along with it.
Cause if Bigfoot’s real that's super cool and he doesn't have to be able to walk through time.
Nick: I do agree with you, Matthew. And this, I kind of agree with, with most like monsters, you know, like the chupacabra or Jersey Devil or whatever, like I don't get why it has to be like paranormal? Like that, that to me, like is always kind of like a big kicker for me.
It's like, I can totally understand like, and like somewhat wrap [00:04:00] my head around, like, Hey, there's just this animal we don't know about. And I'm like, okay, I can just, I get that. But it's like, nah, like Bigfoot's actually a genie, you know? And um, you know, all this stuff, it's like, I don't, that's like, why, why, why can't it just be some animal we didn't, we don't know anything about.
Now, Bigfoot isn't real. Because an animal that fricking big someone would have seen at this point, if you're like, “Hey man, there's this mythical beetle we don't know about because it's the size of a thumbtack” I'd be like, yeah, you're probably right. We don't know about that beetle.
Paula: Or deep sea creature that we haven't discovered yet because it's way 10,000 leagues under the sea, if you will, in the dark.
But we're talking about like, the woods.
Nick: People have been there. Matthew, I have been to the woods.
Paula: How have you not--
Matthew: The taiga forest that goes across the entire of the Northern hemisphere isn't just the woods. It's like the thickest--you can't--Oh my gosh. It's-- you don't just--Big foot high, Bigfoot Country? You don't just go for a jaunt.
You don't go for a stroll. It's like, [00:05:00] no-man's land. It's like the--Oh my good grief.
Paula: I broke Matthew.
Nick: A lot of these sightings have been in like, Virginia. We're not talking about, like deep in the middle of the Congo. Like--
Paula: I don't know that, that feels very well populated, but--
Matthew: so I just want to uh, thank the work of Bob Gimlin, who has a YouTube channel. And it's an absolutely amazing Bigfoot YouTube channel, which I very much enjoyed. And he has a wry, sarcastic demeanor, which I appreciate. His work is also profoundly convincing. So I truly encourage you to subscribe to Bob Gimlin. If you find this kind of weird stuff interesting at all. But firstly, I'm going to tell you the story of the Minnesota Iceman.
I'll just say this about Minnesota, a place that I know, frankly, just about nothing at all about other than something to do with gophers for some reason. I don't know. I briefly Googled it. But I do know that it's a very big ass place and that, unless you live in the Twin [00:06:00] Cities of Minneapolis and St.
Paul--I mean, as well, I had to Google that. So if that sounded natural, It was just, I Googled it--unless you live there, there's an awful lot of nothing in Minnesota. And I don't mean that in a bad way at all. I like to be nowhere near other people. I once got the train through the fine state of Minnesota and, um, it has beautiful, wonderful, fine green pastures.
It is also an incredibly good place If you need to hide a dead body.
Paula: Oh dear.
Matthew: I feel like you could probably do anything there.
Paula: Definitely eat a lot of hot dish there.
Matthew: I don’t know what that is, but it sounds comforting.
Paula: It's a casserole.
Matthew: Mm, that's less fun. Also, their state song is “Hail Minnesota”, which out of context sounds a little bit creepy.
In the 1960s, a fella by the name of Frank Hansen started touring around the American Northeast with a body of a Bigfoot that he had frozen in a meat freezer. Now, admittedly, [00:07:00] that might seem a little bit odd. I'll add the word allegedly in now, but I will a hundred percent carry on to talk about this as though it's absolute fact. The reason this was weird was because up until having a Bigfoot body in a meat freezer, he mainly just toured antique tractors.
Paula: It's important to diversify.
Matthew: It’s good to diversify your portfolio. I appreciate that. This is a side step from, “Hey, do you want to see my tractors” to “Hey. Do you want to see a dead body?”
Nick: Pretty much. You put it on your resume under special skills: freezing Bigfoot.
Matthew: If you are offering people to see a dead body--
Paula: What year was this?
Paula: How did he keep it cold consistently? That's a lot of like, ice he had to have like delivered to him all the time. Right? Am I wrong? They didn't have like… electrical refrigeration then. Right?
Nick: Well, was it during winter? Cause he could just like carry it around outside.
Matthew: You could absolutely buy a freezer in the 1960s.
Paula: Okay. Yep.
Nick: Geez, 1860s--
Paula: That makes a big [00:08:00] difference. I was like--
Matthew: Three men died getting this ice!
Paula: Okay, this makes a lot more sense. Continue. 1960s. Got it.
Matthew: Along with these antiquated tractors in 1965, he also sold tickets for a quarter a piece to go and see Bigfoot. Now the first question I'm sure you're asking is: where did he get a frozen Bigfoot from?
Nick: My first question was like, why only a quarter? Like I understand it was the sixties, but like, come on, give him, give me a five spot. That's ridiculous. It’s Bigfoot.
Matthew: If you're going to hustle that hard for a quarter a piece, that’s a lot of money in the 1960s
Nick: It should have been a five spot or a, just an exorbitant amount of cocaine.
Matthew: You talk about, this is something that hasn't come up in this podcast before, but you talk about cocaine so much that I think you should just go and get some cocaine.
Nick: Cocaine fascinates me because I'm really loud and energetic. And cocaine makes you really loud, energetic. So like in terms of drugs- I've never done any [00:09:00] drugs-so like, in terms of drugs that I'm curious to try cocaine's up there. Cause I'm just curious of what I would be like on cocaine?
Matthew: Almost intolerable. I would probably imagine. I would suggest ketamine for you if I'm perfectly honest or some other kind of horse tranquilizer, that'd be fun.
Paula: I mean did he just take a dead human body and like glue a bunch of hair to it, though?
Matthew: We're going to get so deep into this. It's going to be,it's going to be a whole thing.
Firstly. Frank was a pretty upstanding member of society. He was a captain in the U S Air Force. One of the, one of the Oh, one of the--what a, what an air force--and by all accounts, just a normal guy. And while there are certainly a few origin stories for the Iceman, including at one time Hansen claiming that the body had been discovered floating in a block of ice off the Siberian coast by a Russian seal hunting vessel, or that the Japanese had a whaling ship and they'd found it, or that had been found in a deep freeze facility in Hong [00:10:00] Kong.
And one story that he was just holding onto the body for Jimmy Stewart. That's right THE Jimmy Stewart, who, by the way, fucking loves this weird stuff. And once got in almost a lot of trouble trying to smuggle Yeti bones out of the Himalayas. It's a whole thing. It's the Buddhist artifact called the pan Bach hand.
Anyway, look that up. It's very interesting.
Paula: Wait, so this guy keeps changing his story about where he got the body from?
Matthew: Oh yeah, big time.
Paula:That's a red flag number one for me.
Matthew: Frank would also later say that he told a few little white lies about the origin as he was truly worried, that he had killed some form of human.
Remember. And I'm going to, I'm saying this as though you will know what I'm talking about, remember the Patterson Gimlin footage was still seven years away and the Patterson Gimlin footage is the most famous Bigfoot footage. That one of just the dude--
Nick: --the one where he's like mid-stride and he's like, heyyyy--
[00:11:00] Matthew: It is the one where he looks back and kind of goes “sup”.
Nick: What's up, my name’s Larry--
Paula: --shot by the same people who shot the moon landing. Actually.
Nick: It's true. That one's fake. I'll tell, I’ll say that--
Matthew: Don’t get me started! I think we went, but when?
So the Patterson Gimlin footage really brought Bigfoot to the force. So this was before all that, and also turns out that that footage on I M D B has only got a 7.5 and it's a film starring the real Bigfoot. I mean, what do you want from a film to rate it a 10?
Paula: I don’t know, a narrative.
Matthew: The narrative is, I'll tell you the narrative start to finish: Huh?? That's a Bigfoot!
Nick: That's got, that's got a climax--
Paula: Lacks closure.
Matthew: I didn't check, but I wonder what the JFK getting his face blasted in got on IMDB--well, technically I think it’s his face blasted out.--
Paula: Let's talk about Bigfoot. That’s upsetting.
Nick: This is America.
Matthew: The official account of how Frank Hansen shot himself a Bigfoot [00:12:00] was published in Saga Magazine. And follows the narrative that he had a couple buddies had just gone hunting at White Face Reservoir in Northern Minnesota, which is important as I will mention later, he said--now, this is a very long quote and quite possibly one of the only quotes of the whole episode.
So for it, I'm going to attempt an accent.
Paula: I'm ready for it.
Matthew: Just to spice it up a little bit, because if I say “I shot a Bigfoot”, it seems like it was a clean kill.
[background music starts]
“In the middle of a small clearing were three hairy creatures that at first looked like bears. Two of these creatures were on their knees tearing at the inside of freshly killed deer. The deer’s innards were scattered around the clearing. The things were scooping blood from the stomach cavity into the palm of their hands---like which is completely bad-ass--raising their cupped hands of fresh blood to their mouths
[00:13:00] they swallow the liquid. The third creature was about 10 yards away on the edge of the clearing crouched on his haunches. It was obvious he was a male in similar stature as a man. Absolute horror gripped my every muscle as the, as I stared at the frightening tableau before me. I felt as if my body had turned to stone. Without warning, the male lept straight into the air from his crouched position, his arms jerked upwards, high above his head.
And he let out a weird screeching sound. Screeching and screaming he charged towards me. I can't remember aiming my rifle, nor do I recall pulling the trigger, but a bullet must have slammed into the beast body as blood spurted from his face. The huge creature staggered seemingly stunned by this unexpected happening.”
Nick: Fair. That's a dumb creature. That’s what that is.
Matthew: I do not recall ejecting the [00:14:00] spent shell, nor do I recall firing my rifle again. In many sweat drenched, nightmares, however, I have vividly envisioned the blood covered face lying on the ground next to the mutilated deer. I have absolutely no recollection of ever seeing the other two creatures again, they seem to have vanished into thin air. Blind with fear I started to run. I dashed over the swampy terrain, not knowing or caring in which direction I ran. My only thought was to get away from those horrible things. I stumbled. I fell, but I picked myself up again and fell once more. I thought they were right behind me.
Finally, I fell onto the frozen marshland. Completely exhausted, not caring if the creatures caught me. I lay there waiting for the attack. I’ve no recollection of time and my mind blanked out.
Nick: It sounds like he has no recollection of like, anything.
Matthew: What happened was he went, [00:15:00] Oh I’ve shot something, run for your life! And he's blanked it out because of the sheer, sheer--
Nick: --arousal of the kill--
Matthew: --the sheer thrill that you can only gain from killing something. That's got consciousness above that of a mere animal.
Paula: I was gonna say there was something almost Lovecraftian about that description. And I want to say that though that was not a Minnesota accent,
um, I do find it to have been effective in giving in a sense of gravitas.
Nick: Otherwise he'd be like, “Oh yeah, there’s a, there's a big old, Bigfoot out there. And I took a gun and I shot him right in the frickin face there eh?” Paula, you be the Minnesota Bigfoot getting shot. And then I'll be the Minnesota guy.
“Oh, Hey, there’s a big foot. Oh, oh don't you come running at me there, eh
Paula: Oh, hi. Oh, don't mind me.
Nick: I think you're running and I get a bit scared, but I keep blacking out during
this whole situation, making this story really, really inconsistent, but I'm going to shoot you right there. I don't remember doing it, but boom bang.
Paula: Oh no!
Matthew: “You want to [00:16:00] watch where you're aiming that thing you might go--Oh my God!”
Paula: Could these creatures be like… way backwoods people who are kind of like inbred and--
Matthew: Hills Have Eyes style.
Nick: Like one of those civilizations in Papa New Guinea that like, have never met any other civilization. So when they see a helicopter, they start firing at it.
Matthew: The amount of things I've watched and read where every now and again someone said, “Oh, it could have just been a hairy man, who knows?”
Nick: I think it's an LA hipster. Who just thinks he's outdoorsy.
Matthew: Mm, if you can be mistaken for a Bigfoot--
Paula: --some hygiene issues--
Nick: Nothing against the Grecian people, but I saw some exceptionally hairy man in Greece.
Nick: Is that, should we cut that out?
Matthew: Perhaps. After locating his friends, they left the forest and Frank didn't mention it to anyone on account of him not wanting to sound crazy.
He also didn't want to have to go through a psych evaluation, which is probably the right move on his part because in the 1960s in the military, not [00:17:00] only because stuff like PTSD wasn't really a thing, he'd also turned to liquor and pain medication--which let me tell you something about the warm and comforting arms of liquor and pain medication, because they are just absolutely great.
And by that, I mean, fucking dangerously addictive, awful, but also undeniably fun. Yeah. So as with many people who turned to the devil's cocktail, paranoia and mental health problems set in, so with the first snow, he decided to set out and retrieve the body, not only to make sure he'd actually seen what he had seen, shot what he had shot, but also to make sure that no one else stumbled upon the monster and started to ask any questions.
Now, this is the one part where I have trouble understanding the timeline of the story as he waited til the first snow and went hunting in like the Summer. And while I don't know much about hunting, I have to assume that anything dead on the ground will be scavenged [00:18:00] pretty much straight away.
Paula: I would think
Matthew: So obviously I don't understand the timeline here. But all will become clear later on. And I wanted to do that in an accent again, because “clear” is one of the words I can do. So anyway, ignoring that issue like a real scientist, I'll carry on. But I'll address this in a later segment that I'm going to call: Ah Ha!
Nick: So this guy, he was like, I want to go find this monster so no one accidentally stumbles upon this monster, but then I'm going to freeze it and like, charge people to see it?
Matthew: The reason he didn't want to anyone to know that he killed something was because he was still a military man. You know, he was still an upstanding member of society. He wasn't the famed antiquated tractor peddler that we came to know and love later on in life.
Paula: Oh my gosh. How long did he keep this body frozen? Before he started showing it around to people like--
Nick: --good question, Paula--
Paula: --this guy… something's wrong with him!
Matthew: As the snow began to fall in Northern Minnesota, he went in [00:19:00] search of the monster.
He found the corpse, wrapped it in a tarp, took it home and froze it in a meat freezer in his basement, which I have to say, look, don't put any bodies of any age or any ape-like creatures in your freezer, in your basement or anyone's basement. He's got his buddies round for the big game is on. Right. That's what you people do, right?
That the Super Bowl, whatever is on, he's supporting his local… the Minnesota Gophers I want to say--
Nick: The Vikings
Matthew: I don't know who they are. Same thing. They're both great builders. He says, “Hey, go get me some beer from the fridge”. And the guy just walks down and he's a bit drunk and walks down the stairs into the basement, opens the fridge and clutching a six pack of Coors Banquet beer--the greatest of all the terrible beers--it's a Minnesota Iceman.
So from 65 to 67, along with his antiquated tractors, he decides that now he's, that he's left the army. He [00:20:00] decides for a quarter a go, you can come and see a dead body.
Matthew: This is all going great until a science guy got involved
Paula: Damn science guys.
Matthew: Bastards! By that, I mean, a psychology student named Terry Cullen. Now Cullen really believed in the specimen, but that made him write just a shit ton of letters to the scientific community, who did not respond. So then he reached out to Ivan Sandestin, a noted cryptozoologist who had written extensively on the subject of The Abominable Snowman: Legends Come to Life and Bernard Villain who wrote On the Track of Unknown Animals, which is a classic book that I would actually highly recommend.
Both Benard and Ivan were the type of people that if you asked them to come see a dead body, you better believe they're going to come and see.
Nick: Oh, they'll travel.
Matthew: If someone asks you to come see a dead body.
Paula: No, absolutely not. I would like to be able to close my eyes to go to sleep and not see that flashing through my mind.
Nick: It depends on where this dead body is. Like, they're like, “Hey. Come down to [00:21:00] my basement dungeon and see a dead body”. I'd be like, nah, I'm going to become that dead body. But if like I'm behind a Ralph's and someone's like, “Hey, you want to see a dead body? It's right over here.” I'll be like, yeah, I will.
Paula: No, I'm not going behind a Ralph's.
Matthew: ”You mean, if I go behind that Dick's barbecue there's a dead body? I'm not falling for it again!”
Train tracks is the only place I want to see a dead body.
They examined the body. And over the course of a few days, the findings were even published in the bulletin of the Royal Institute of Natural Science of Belgium. But Benard for damn sure didn't believe the story of how the body came to Frank Hansen's possession. Ivan went on to describe the body in a magazine called Argassi. Essentially his description was seemingly his attempt to not prove what it was, but to say for sure what it wasn't: a human. So this all gets real fucky when Hansen took the body to Canada. If you've got a dead body, I will say this now: crossing state lines is one thing, but don’t--
Nick: “Oh, Hey, what'd you got there in the truck there.”
“Oh, she's a Yeti.”
[00:22:00] Matthew: ”That's the dead body of a mountain man!”
He took the body to Canada to hide it as he was getting all kinds of nervous and paranoid about having the body. With the academic world calling him a liar, the government calling him a possible murderer, and the church--now Hansen was a man of faith--they weren't particularly happy about him parading around the missing link.
He came back to the U S with a replica. So a few notes here for the sake of brevity. Frank did talk to John Chambers, the guy behind the Planet of the Apes about getting a replica. But this was way, way after the years that he had been touring the body... he said that he would release the body if he could be made immune to any legal problems around having the body, which is something that the government were unwilling to agree to.
Both Ivan Sanderson and Bernard Willem said that the body that they examined was not the body that came back from Canada. [00:23:00]
Did I hear a cat?
Paula: Yes. I'm so sorry.
Nick: That sounds like, was that Emily? The tortoise?
Matthew: Emily the Tortoise, she's so, she's so close to being out of hibernation.
Nick: Is that right?
Paula: [off mic] Luna, stop.
Matthew: There's always the risk that she might just be a shell. She's in the garage and I've not smelled anything weird. So I'm pretty sure she's alive.
Paula: The account of how this guy got this body of an alleged Sasquatch is sounding very familiar to me. Like it's very similar to an account I have heard from somewhere else.
Matthew: Did someone try and sell you a dead body?
Paula: [laughs] No, like that documentary!
Matthew: Yeah. Big time.
Paula: Are we going to talk about that? Because it’s like--woah!
Matthew: The one thing that I truly don't believe at all about this whole story is that Frank Hansen went into the woods and shot himself a Bigfoot. What I think is a vastly more likely possibility in my mind and in the mind of Bob Gimlin, who, again, I need to thank for the [00:24:00] bulk of this story, is that he was an air force officer, captain in the air force. I think maybe he was making like a backhanded deal. Shady deal. Someone says, Hey, I've got a dead Yeti do you want it? And he said, yeah, big time. That's what I'm saying. But when I say it outloud--
Nick: --doesn’t that make it more likely at all? Because that other person still had to find the Yetis somewhere
Matthew: I think, is a covert operation. And I also think that the government took the body away.
Paula: I think this is like some X-Files.
Nick: He does love X-Files.
Paula: You don't think that he was just like in the woods and stumbled upon a dead body. Took it home with him and thought, “wow, wouldn't this be a better story if I like, was attacked by these monsters and then I shot them and then I came back for the body.”
Matthew: Well, I've seen the, the, the pictures of the original body before it was switched. I'm doing air quotes, you can't see--switched by the government. It looks exactly like the images [00:25:00] that a guy called Todd Standing has taken. They're called asylvian videos. Have either of you heard of Les Stroud? The uh Survivor Man?
Matthew: Wow. Love him so much. One thing I love more than anything is the fact that I feel like I could survive on a desert island because I've watched all of his episodes of Survivor. Yeah. I feel like I have the capacity to at least outlast everyone else, which really is what it’s all about, because then you've won.
Paula: Yes, then you’ve won. Exactly.
Nick: Exactly. A hundred percent.
Matthew: There’s so many videos right? There’s loads of videos in Canada that he has taken these pictures of Bigfoot. And there's a few videos and... I…
There's a lot of stuff I don't believe in. Right. But I do believe in Bigfoot. I really do. And why would Les Stroud.. he says, yeah, he saw, he went and saw with Todd Standing. He went up there. He said he saw Bigfoot. He says he's seen it. Why would he lie? He’s Survivor Man. He doesn't need to lie.
Nick: He films everything. This is the one thing he conveniently didn't film.
Matthew: Have you ever?-- [00:26:00] next time? You know, if you ever get mugged or like you see a car crash, how quickly you would need to get your phone out?
It's an elusive mountain man who thrives in the woods and uses his knowledge to seek privacy. God I'm so jealous. It’d be fucking ace.
So from one dead monkey to another one, this next case is a case of Justin Schmear. Who in 2010 while hunting with a friend shot and killed a Bigfoot in the Sierra Nevada mountains of California.
Okay. You've all watched this documentary video cause I sent you a link.
Paula: There's some messed up stuff in this.
Matthew: Yeah. Justin Schmear was out road hunting with his friend who remains anonymous--
Nick: --I just love road hunting.
Matthew: Firstly, the idea of road hunting just-- it's almost glamorous. But it's also just terrible. I mean,
Nick: But it’s also quintessentially American to me just being like, we're going to get our truck.
We're not going to leave that truck we’re just going to shoot stuff from that truck.
[00:27:00] Matthew: We're going to go hunting. No, no, no, you don't have to leave the car.
Nick: That's great.
Paula: It's just like the glamping of hunting.
Nick: Paula, oh you hit on the head. It's the glamping of hunting. You gotta get that on a shirt. I'd wear it.
Paula: It's glunting.
Matthew: Where's Tony today?
Well, on his desk is just left a sign up that says gone, glunting. I've no idea what it means.
So, he's road hunting bears. He's killed a lot of animals. That's his pastime? No judgment here.
I once helped a friend who had killed a deer. I was in Tennessee at the time, at my friend's parent's house and my friend's dad walked into the room--in my mind, he kicked the door down, but I’m pretty sure he just opened it. He said, “Hey, I need some help. I've killed something in the woods”.
Paula: Oh dear.
Matthew: Me and my friend's brother went and helped my friend's father go get this dead deer, which we had to gut first and then drag up a hill. And honestly, it's just… an experience that I, [00:28:00] I have to say, I did not enjoy. Looking at the soulless eyes of a dead deer, which I thought, Oh gosh... it was sad. And I petted it on the head and was like, I'm sorry, mate, you’re dead.
Nick: That's exactly how I would have done it too.
Matthew: If you do enjoy hunting, that's your, that's your thing. Go for it.
Why? Why not? I'm not here to judge you. What I'm trying to say is that Justin Schmear knows what a bear looks like, because that's what he does. He hunts bears.
They are out hunting. They come to this meadow backed with trees and they see… this thing. It's stood up, he's got his hands in the air. It's waving, like it's at a rave. And it says,”Hey!” Waving, he goes,”hi, what's going on?”
Nick: You guy, you guys glunting? Oh man, I love glunting!
Matthew: I think I saw some bears just down the road. If you want to go. That's Dave down there. He's a bear. He's an absolute prick.
He sees this creature, which he [00:29:00] describes on numerous occasions as well… looking like a guy in a bear costume
Nick: --checks out.
Matthew: I have to be honest with you. I think what's even less likely than shooting a genuine Bigfoot. Is that a guy dressed in a bear costume would be
Matthew: --romaning around bear hunting country during bear hunting season, waving at people glunting with guns.
Paula: That is, uh, an incredibly salient point. I think.
Nick: He's an adrenaline junkie, like screw jumping off cliffs, or your know, like skydiving. Dressed as a bear roll around bear hunting country, you should have picked that guy up and taken him down to the Marriott, which is where that furry convention was clearly happening.
Matthew: He shoot its and it runs off as you would. It runs off. It's an incredibly similar story to the Frank Hansen story.
Matthew: Which I do believe that the Frank Hansen story is made up.
[00:30:00] Frankly the, the, the way he procured the specimen.
Paula: But do you think that Justin made up his story? It's so similar to this other one.
Matthew: He shoots this thing. It runs off. Now, his friends really didn't want him to shoot this thing because they just got this feeling that something was not quite right. Now. That feeling is a sense that I can kind of almost imagine myself that kind of like, Oh, this is not right. This is weird. This is abnormal. And they were out to shoot bears. So I feel if you were to believe them, that says it all to me, the fact that if it’d been a bear and they had known it was a bear and they had shot the bear, that would have been like a high five, crack open your… another Coors Banquet.
Nick: Coors Banquet, yeah of course.
Matthew: But they felt weird about it. So they chased this thing. They couldn't find it obviously, but what they do see [00:31:00] is two juvenile creatures who also are not bears and because they can't find the first one Justin, for some reason, decides to shoot one of the younger animals.
And it is kind of weird that he made that decision to do that. Just, he said he was trying to just get it over and done with. So he shoots this other one and gets it right good and proper and, uh, all messed up in its guts. And it dies. And it kind of dies like pretty much in Justin's arms-- point is he said that he felt like he just murdered something.
Now, again, he kills bears for fun. And does not feel like he murdered anything. And I appreciate that. All this hinges on the fact that you have to believe his story, right. Because he doesn't bring it home with him, which is just the worst bit about the whole thing--
Paula: Because like, if you feel, he felt like he murdered something, he's going to like… of course, he's not going to bring [00:32:00] that home with him.
He doesn't want anyone to know.
Matthew: He does the same thing that Frank Hansen does, which is well, which Frank Hansen said he did, which he absolutely didn’t--
Nick:. Go to Canada.
Matthew: Go to Canada, look, I've killed someone. You've got to go to Canada.
Nick: They don't care. Murder is free there, it's like healthcare.
Matthew: You got two options. You kill someone in America. You've got two places you can go. One's hot. One's cold. Make a choice.
He felt like he murdered this thing but he doesn’t bring it back--
Paula: --yeah, because now there's no proof of anything.
Matthew: There is no proof because when they go back to see it, they said, he said he was nervous about, uh, parks and I guess parks and rec, uh, saying--
Nick: Scared of Leslie Knope showing up. Yeah.
Matthew: I mean, she would have been pissed. Yeah.
Paula: She, yeah, absolutely.
Nick: [softly singing] Bye, bye little Bigfoot...
Matthew: In this interview that I watched, uh, from the documentary Dead Bigfoot by Rosha Hebei. They go to do a light detector. And I've said this many times, and me and Nick have had this conversation before in the past that a lie detector doesn't mean anything.
Nick: It just means that you sincerely believe what you saw or what you did, but that doesn't [00:33:00] mean that it actually happened. Just means that you believe it. And certain people believe a lot of different things. So it doesn't mean anything.
Paula: So here's the thing. So I watched this and one, this is where I have a hard time. I'm baffled by this guy, this guy, by Justin, because I don't believe that he has the acting ability to lie this convincingly. He seems so genuine and I don't believe he's acting. I think he believes the story that he has told, but I just don't know what actually happened. And it is messed up.
Matthew: This is exactly what I thought about this case. Right? Justin Schmear either shot a Bigfoot or is the greatest actor of all time. The way he describes it, the, the look in his face, unless [00:34:00] he's the greatest liar of all time I have to believe him. He looks convincing. He looks like frankly, he looks like a nice guy that I'd like to hang out with. I think I'd be friends with him and I'd probably--
Paula: I don't think, no offense to Justin, I don't think I'd be friends with him, but I think he means well enough.
Matthew: He just like the interviews in shirts that are just, I mean, completely like the oldest clothes he owns. He just not, he is not in it to look good. He's not in it for fame, I don't think.
Paula: He's quite salt of the earth.
Matthew: I do own a couple of sleeveless, um, flannel shirts.
Paula: Oh dear.
Matthew: I make them look great. It gets very hot in Tennessee, when I’m there, and sometimes you just need it to be-- and I can't--I have to be wearing--I have to be fully clothed. So I have to try and work that out. I have to find interim between those two things.
And the only thing that annoys me is they didn't get Justin’s hunting buddy “anonymous” to do a lie detector. That would also--
Paula: Mm, yeah, corroborate.
[00:35:00] Nick: Here's what I think. I…
Nick: Don't believe him at all.
Paula: You think he's lying?
Nick: I-- here's what I think happened here.
Matthew: I'll just say quickly now: he shoots bass for fun. He knows what a bear looks like.
Nick: True. Here's the thing, man. Sometimes you're out glunting, you know, with your best friend, you are, you are, you are slamming back probably an irresponsible amount of Coors Banquet, you know, and you're just going out.
You're shooting bears. Sometimes you shoot a bear, you got a little too much Coors Banquet going through those veins and you start thinking that it's not a bear. I don't think that-- I think he believes what he saw, but I think what he saw was a bear. He was probably just drunk or something or maybe, you know, I don't know, but I don't think--and also I don't get… okay this is the first thing I thought was like, okay, so first he, he shoots like the adult, right. And the adult runs away and then they go up and they see these like little baby [00:36:00] bears. And then they're like, we’ll shoot one of these. And so they shoot one of those ones and then he's like, man, I murdered something.
And so like, what I don't get is like, presumably at least right away, the
... I would assume mother bear… um, cause if there are anything like bears or anything like primates, the fathers aren't really one taking care of the kids. Like, presumably that bear like ran off, but like, I don't think that bear would have left the kids there.
Most animals, particularly any kind of mammal, tend to be really fiercely protective of their children. I can't imagine the big Bigfoot would get shot and be like, “Oh hell no, I'm leaving this place.” You, you, you two, you're good right? Okay. I'm gonna leave. I'm gonna go. I got shot in the ass.”
You know, it's just like, I just can't imagine--I feel like that Bigfoot would sit there and like defend its children. You know, I can't imagine that like... that's why I think this whole thing is weird and it probably didn't happen. I think he got a little two Coors Banquet drunk, and by the way, [00:37:00] we're trying to get a Coors Banquet, um, sponsorship.
Matthew: I would love that, just so you know.
Paula: Yeah, I'm drinking a Coors Banquet right now. And mmm so tasty.
Matthew: The greatest.
Nick: But no, cause I just, I don't, I don't believe any part of the story none of it makes any sense at all. Unless someone was like, just not really right in the head and just… you know, maybe it's schizophrenia or something like that, you know, just thinking of stuff or... like was hammered and was seeing a bunch of stuff that they don't wasn't there or just was very, very heavily skewed because none of it makes any sense.
And also if they're glunting, that means they're by the road. Something as elusive as a Bigfoot, don't you think it would be smart enough to avoid roads?
Matthew: It's on a dirt track. It's actually illegal to Glunt from a road. You have to be on a designated not-road like a dirt track.
Nick: I can't imagine something that elusive and potentially that smart would be like “this road seems cool to hang out on.”
Matthew: If I was shot in the chest [00:38:00] --and I haven't been shot in the chest, admittedly, but if I were to be shot in the chest, I do think that my first primal urge would be to run as far away from the bullets as possible.
But yeah, I just think this is 10 years, this is like almost 10 years ago. He doesn't seem to have made loads of Bigfoot money. He hasn't... I don't think he's released books and stuff. He just goes out looking for Bigfoot still. So I do think that at the very least he believes his own story.
Nick: I think that, I agree with that. I believe that as well. I think he thinks he saw Bigfoot.
Paula: Or he's convinced himself.
Nick: Yeah. And that's what I think it is. I think he was probably impaired or something was weird. And like he thinks he saw this thing. And at this point he has convinced himself that that's what's happened.
Matthew: I do agree. I do see the point that sometimes if you-- the hardest thing would be to let go of it and say to, to admit to yourself that you were wrong.
I do see that.
Nick: Well, especially at this point, the second like, you do these [00:39:00] interviews and stuff like that, like you kind of get backed into a corner and it's like, you have to. You start doubling down. You see, every, everyone is like that with anything they believe like the second someone starts questioning them, instead of then being like, “yeah, maybe I didn't see that” people have a tendency to double down on their beliefs.
Paula: And then you get to a point where you've convinced yourself.
Matthew: I have told lies so often that I forget that they were a lie. Now I-- that has happened to me.
Paula: I have a thought. I have two thoughts. Actually. I have question--they may be questions for you, Matthew. Um, so. Here's one issue I have. He's like, it definitely wasn't an ape. It didn't look like an ape at all. And then they show this like, artist's rendering of how he described it. And I'm like, um, this is a picture of an ape.
Matthew: It was a picture of a chimpanzee, wasn't it? I mean--
Paula: It was straight up a monkey. And I was like, wait, is this is the proof that you didn't see a monkey because it looks like one to me. Thoughts?
Matthew: I just think, I mean, if you are an artist and someone says, if someone says, draw [00:40:00] a wild… the unconscious bias that you'd put into those images that you draw, you would be drawing on Harry and the Hendersons and every chimp you'd ever seen. Right. I think drawing an original thing, a new monster would be harder than just drawing an ape.
Paula: I have one other thought. I haven't looked at a lot of thermal camera footage. Yeah, that's what it's called. Right? So at the end of this documentary--
Matthew: Apart from when you played Outlast--
Paula: Well, yes, but that's, I mean, completely-- I have blocked most of that from my mind, because it was so emotionally upsetting for me.
So they have this bit where they like, see a Bigfoot out in the woods and their proof is this like thermal camera movement. Now, I don't know what these things are really supposed to look like. And Matthew, maybe with all of your watching of Bigfoot stuff, you've seen a lot of this and you're like, yes, that was convincing, that’s what it’s supposed to look like.
To me as someone with a background in [00:41:00] visual effects work, it looks like a bad visual effect. It looks like a bad paint out job where someone masked out a thing, didn't feather it at all and then animated it on and off to look like movement. So I didn't find that convincing, but I don't actually know what it's supposed to look like.
Can you speak to that, Matthew?
Matthew: I do think that 99.9% of the time, when anyone sees a Bigfoot or something that goes bump in the night, it's definitely an explainable thing. That it's sometimes when people see the Jersey devil, yeah, it is just an owl. But I do think that's sometimes that 0.01% of the time that it is something different.
I do think that, but yeah, I think the fact that they also got thermal imaging of a Bigfoot whilst they happen to be filming a documentary, I find that slightly suspect. Yeah. I don't like the idea of them adding fuckery to the whole situation. If you could leave all that out, [00:42:00] the temptation--just leave all that out, that would make things more convincing.
I think without that aspect of the documentary, the whole documentary would have been more convincing on a whole. But also, what if it was a Bigfoot?
So now we've talked about Bigfoot in a kind of, a kind of rational and scientific way, I believe, kind of, I used the word “genealogy” at the start for God's sake.
There are some wild ass, weird weird, weird fucking theories. Is it an alien? Some people think it might be an alien. Some people think it might be a robot controlled by aliens. That's a thought--
Paula: That is probably the most likely one. I'm going to say.
Nick: I like that one personally. Yes.
Matthew: More likely than a trans dimensional alien or trans dimensional creature in general because wherever there's a Bigfoot there's normally UFO's and it's like these hotspots, like the Skin Walker Ranch--and talking about the Skin Walker Ranch--
Paula: That's a horrifying name.
Matthew: It would have to, it would have [00:43:00] to be a whole thing. It's a whole different thing. It’s a ranch, called Skin Walker ranch. A Skin Walker is a Native American mythical creature of sorts. If you think it is, it might not be, it might be real, but they can take on the embodiments of different, of any animal.
Matthew: The Ojibwe, who are a First Nations tribe, have in their mythology, right? they've got these seven grandfather teachings, which are virtues or represented by different animals.
Now, one of those virtues is this animal called Sabe, which is the animal, which represents the virtue of honesty. Sabe is a Bigfoot.
Paula: This thing that we can't decide that people lie about seeing, or we can't decide if they're lying or not represents honesty.
Matthew: Well that’s exactly right, it’s funny right?
Now, the Ojibwe people, who live in a First Nations tribe I believe, so they're vastly Canadia, they know about more than seven animals. So why you would have to pick one of those animals to be something that doesn't [00:44:00] exist. Doesn't really seem to make any sense.
Paula: Maybe they're like, “Hey, this animal represents honesty. So think about that when you want to claim that you've seen it.”
Matthew: There's so many levels of intrigue that would have to go into that.
But that's it, that's Bigfoot. Bigfoot. I believe in Bigfoot. I really truly do. And if you don't believe me you’re an idiot.
Paula: You get more flies with honey Matthew.
Nick: I want to put this out there. Like, you know, this is the first episode I want to put this out there. Like I-- I would love for this to be true and most things that we're probably gonna talk about, like, yeah, it'd be great. If the Jersey devil was real, like, I just, I would love to believe… but none of the stuff here is convincing in the slightest.
Paula: It's, it's just all still so like...
Nick: I'm sorry
Paula: ...what an enigma. Like, I don't know what-- I mean, something is there. I just don't know.
Matthew: So that is it, I think for the first episode of Death by Monsters. If you're [00:45:00] still here, what's wrong with you? What's wrong with your life? Do something better with your time. But you can find us--
Paula: No, hang out with us.
Matthew: You can find us on Twitter at Death B M podcast, because there was a band from 2011 who have not tweeted in almost 10 years, who have the name death by monsters. It's very aggravating. Dammit.
You can also email us at email@example.com. Please send us any of your home, strange stories. That's right. Home strange, which is an absolutely incredible pun. Your personal stories of weird stuff that's happened to you. Maybe you were covered in a weird slime one time. I don't know. Maybe you were around far too many lady bugs.
Nick: Want to hear about it.
Matthew: Or, maybe your dog told you to kill someone or anything, anything like that?
Uh, Oh, if you have anything that you want us to cover, we'll be happy to consider it for sure. But until then, thanks for stopping by. Until next time.
Nick: Bye everybody.
[BIT OF THEME MUSIC]
[00:46:00] Paula: Like the dolphin of the woods.
Matthew: I’ve often called Bigfoot the dolphin of the forest.
Paula: We're so ready for merch. Just make some t-shirts--
Matthew: I will say this, there's a whole idea that Bigfoothas got like a, Oh God, I-- You know what? No, we're going to get into it.