What is a Wendigo?

Ok, so we watched this movie the other day.
Just in case you can't read/see the poster and infer the following, this movie was about a a bunch of guys up in the mountains and one guy starts eating all the other guys. In the literary community they call this cannibalism. Also, if you can't read/see you might be in the wrong place, which probably happens a lot if you can't read or see. Ok, carrying on.

Two things happened in this movie.

First, Guy Pearce took a Polar Bear Plunge.

Guy Pearce
Some guy.

Second, this guy ate everyone else.

After he ate everyone he turned into a sort of monster or demon or something and I was a little confused then someone got thrown off a cliff then Guy Pearce ate someone and I didn't quite know what was going on. I channeled my inner scientist and did a little research on the topic of dudes eating dudes and turning into beasts/creatures.

Turns out, there is a name for this sort of thing. In accord with the traditions of the Algonquian and Ojibwa tribes, the eating of human flesh can give a person the strength of the consumed body. However, it also turns the guy doing the cannibal-ing into a monster. This monster is called the Wendigo. This is what Guy Pearce had to deal with. Despite the wendigo's deep roots in Native tradition, this beast is very hard to track down on the internet.

There seems to be little agreement on what the wendigo looks like.

Some people thinks it is just a big, red eye shadow-wearing shadow.

Some folks think it looks like a buffalo.

I think the dissent in the appearance of the wendigo is because if you ever see one it probably eats you and how are you going to tell someone what it looks like then? That's what I thought, smartass.

I bet this park is not very fun.

My brother says the wendigo was in the movie Pan's Labyrinth.

I guess he was right.

I don't think Hulk ever fought the wendigo. There's a lot of stuff out on the internet you just can't trust these days.

Alright, my research into the wendigo remains somewhat inconclusive. What does the wendigo look like? Do all cannibals become wendigos or just some? How do you kill it? Is might be a movie star and it may or may not have fought the Hulk. These are the questions that will persist, well, probably for about another 15 minutes.

I am 9 months from having an English degree.


  1. my friend was watching an episode of "lost tapes" on the history channel, the other day, and it was based on the wendigo. i was curious, and this was very helpful. thanks! -emily, 13

  2. Ever since this morning I have been reading all sorts of interesting things on the wendigo. There is a story where a plane crashed some place in the mountains, and about two thirds of the people died in the crash. After a few days of starvation, they made their choice of whether they would live or die, so they ate the bodies of their fellow flyers which were preserved by the snow. The Native Americans thought of cannibalism as being possessed by the wendigo in a time of famine, or under times of cold weather.

  3. The Wendigo is a gigantic demon, approximately five hundred feet or something, as high as the trees. It doesn't possess people in the sense that other demons do, but it makes them become cannibals. Therefore when the Wendigo walks through an area anyone in the area will become a cannibalistic killer. The Wendigo resembles a gigantic, massive humanoid, covered with white, matted, twisted, blanket-like fur, with glowing red, blue or white eyes, and an enormously long blue tongue. The Wendigo's overwhelming size alone can cause instant death through sheer shock. The Wendigo essentially has the power to create cannibals and influences the aggressive tendencies of the human nature. Some may call it a demon, but the Wendigo is really a beast of the forest, a wild carnivore, intelligent enough to subtly influence our deepest hunger. Oh, and by the way, Wendigos are enormously intelligent, far more intelligent than any human.