Last month, Capcom unveiled Resident Evil Village‘s massive vampire woman, Lady Dimitrescu. Standing 9’6” tall (in a hat and heels), she’s captured the imaginations of many internet dwellers – who are mostly asking her to step on them. But she’s not the first tall gothic hottie to steal people’s hearts. According to RE8’s art director Tomonori Takano, she’s partially inspired by perhaps one of the most famous ominous ladies, Morticia Addams.
“In the early stages of planning, we decided on going with [a] castle and vampires motifs,” Takano tells IGN. “However, we did not want to be constrained by how vampires have been portrayed in various forms of popular entertainment.”
He says they went with the concept of a “bewitching vampire”, inspired by Anjelica Huston’s Morticia Addams, 16th century serial killer Elizabeth Báthory and Japanese urban legend, Hasshaku-sama.
This has been an excellent reminder that I’m very overdue a watch of Addams Family Values. Lady Dimitrescu is cool and all, but let’s remember who the real goddess is here.
As for Dimitrescu’s other inspirations, possibly the scariest of the lot is real-life serial killer Elizabeth Báthory. She was a Hungarian noble in the late 1500s who spent her time abducting and torturing peasant girls. Stories and speculation suggest she was a bit vampiric, and supposedly believed bathing in human blood would keep her youthful. I’ll be honest, this one has taken a little of the sparkle away from Lady D for me.
Then there’s Hasshaku-sama, an urban legend that emerged from the depths of 2chan. She’s said to be a monster who stood around eight feet tall, wore a long white dress and a wide-brimmed hat. That certainly checks out for everyone’s fave new Resi villain. Hasshaku-sama is also said to prey on young men, so uh, watch out Ethan.
“I don’t think anyone [on the team] could have predicted how wonderfully fans have reacted to Lady Dimitrescu,” Takano adds. “Personally, I was particularly struck by comments like, ‘I want to be chased by her.'”
Sadly, IGN didn’t seem to ask if Takano was surprised by people comparing her height to that of an ostrich. Nate did exactly that in his definitive size chart for Lady Dimitrescu. Spoiler: emperor penguins are bigger than you might expect.