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The Rake by Inenarrable.

13-year-old Mythical Beast Filmed in Canadian Wilderness?

Was an unknown 'humanoid creature' spotted stalking a moose in Gaspésie, Québec, Canada, or is this shaky video another poor quality Internet hoax?

What appears as a six-foot "faceless," hitherto unrecorded human-like creature, was filmed "stalking a moose" and sensationalist publications are claiming the video has "sparked worldwide panic" as the identity of the beast baffled millions of viewers after going viral on the Internet.

Filmed by local resident Audrée Tanguay Fréchette, the beast appears to be lurking behind a feeding moose in the isolated Canadian wilderness and this classically badly focused video shows a faint, pale, human sized figure moving behind the moose. Many viewers have speculated that it appears to "walk on its hindlegs like a human, and could be the legendary Rake monster," comparable to Bigfoot and the Yeti, according to a report in The Express .

Still from the film with figure highlighted. (Youtube Screenshot)

Still from the film with figure highlighted. ( Youtube Screenshot )

A Sighting of the Canadian Rake?

The legendary "Rake" is described as a "brutal, savage, humanoid creature with canine characteristics," although it has never savaged any human, never mind "brutally." Many claim it attacks without provocation using its "long, blade-like fingers" to pull apart its victims.

The Express reported that the video has been viewed online "more than 102,000 times" and social media viewers have provided a host of possible explanations for the sighting, responding to the filmmaker’s question: "Looking at the video I saw this strange shape at the back left. Can someone tell me what it is?"

In response one commentator wrote: "That looks like the Rake type creature stalking that moose" but skeptics, however, claimed that the footage was "misleading" and suggested that the "creature" was no more than a "speck on the car window". But this does not argue why the creature apparently moves in the footage. I can help with that though.

A speck of reality

In my 20's I studied photography and video communications in the Glasgow College of Building and Printing. Since, I have conducted numerous still photography exhibitions and have filmed hundreds of hours of documentary video footage. On many occasions I have discovered my own "Rake monsters" in that such "appearances" are caused by a well understood occurrence which all photographers know about.

A tiny speck of dust on a lens can sometimes appear to take on monster proportions, and what is more, because they are sometimes so close to the lens, moving the camera as much as a few millimeters causes the spec to "appear" to move several feet in video footage. A good way to recreate this effect is to hold your finger up against your nose in your living room. Now close one eye and look at the finger. When you move your finger a few millimeters, notice how it covers and reveals what appears to be several feet against the wall.

This effect is also apparent when a subject is close to the lens and moves it a few inches to the left or right, sometimes covering or revealing entire mountains on the horizon. Although thousands of people believe this terrible quality video does indeed capture the legendary Rake monster, before believing a word they say, you would be well served to know a few facts about it, which lead to the total demystification of this beast.

The Rake animation by Dimelotu. (DeviantArt)

The Rake animation by Dimelotu. ( DeviantArt)

Making a monster myth

Sightings of the Rake monster began in 2003 as a collaborative project online, and it belongs to a genre of mythical creatures known collectively as "creepy pasta." According to dictionary.com, it all began when a 4chan user posted on a /b/ board inviting others to contribute their ideas for the beasts "physical attributes and habits" to help make the new monster. Photoshopped images of the Rake were soon created and the monster’s identity was tracked in this 2013 blog post:

"Here’s what we’ve got so far: Humanoid, about six feet tall when standing, but usually crouches and walks on all fours. It has very pale skin. The face is blank. As in, no nose, no mouth... Usually seen in front yards in suburban areas. Usually just watches the observer, but will stand up and attack if approached. When it attacks, a mouth opens up, as if a hinged skull that opens at the chin. Reveals many tiny, but dull teeth.

But even with these clear modern origins, to many, the Rake monster will always be real and will no doubt evolve, over time, into another Bigfoot or Yeti.

Top image: The Rake by Inenarrable. Source: DeviantArt

By Ashley Cowie

Comments

Sorry, not a speck on the lens in this case. The camera is constantly moving but the "creature" only moves sporadically.

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