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The grotesque figure of the zombie was so distorted in appearance that it was highly disturbing. Its bizarre face and grotesque build were so scary to look at, and it really grossed me out. I prefer lighter movies that feature pleasant characters, not these horror films that feature grotesque or extremely ugly characters meant to shock and creep you out.

Quiz: What does someone look like if he is grotesque?

  • It looks like he didn’t take a bath that morning.
  • He looks like he is disturbed by something.
  • He is misshapen and monstrous in appearance.

Memory Hook

Grotesque Something grotesque is just gross.


  • Though one should be prepared to vomit rather frequently and disport with pink elephants and assorted grotesqueries while trying often unsuccessfully to make one's way to the toilet. — Elizabeth Aston Elizabeth aston
  • Wearing grotesque masks, their bodies painted in many hues, they pop up, rob and disappear, leaving no footprints for baffled police. —Sports Illustrated
  • The problem is that sometimes, when things get really broken, the very concept of a middle ground between real people and corrupt special interests becomes a grotesque fallacy. —Rolling Stone
  • The plot of The Host isn’t anything spectacular: Cute girl is captured by grotesque monster; her bumbling family hunts the monster. —Wired

Word Ingredients

crypt hidden
-esque resembling

Grotesque ultimately comes from a root word meaning “grotto,” a cave or cavern (natural or artificially constructed) “hidden” away. Pictures found in excavated Roman buildings had elements of the grotesque in them, that is, they were somewhat “bizarre” or “outlandish,” and hence were appropriately “resembling” that which should be “hidden” away, and so were. Note: the letters “k” and “g” are often interchangeable across languages.

Word Theater

Rick and Morty The monster is grotesque.

Word Constellation