SyFy's original movies have a certain reputation to uphold. The films have to be so bad that they are good; the monsters so outrageous that they become hilarious; acting and writing so poorly done that every person watching must think to themselves, "I could make something better than this." And usually, SyFy doesn't disappoint.
The network has been cranking out monster movies for years before Sharknado and its sequel started making headlines, featuring premises and monsters every bit as over-the-top as tornadoes slinging great white sharks over Los Angeles. Below is just a small sampling of the movie magic that only SyFy can deliver, ranked in a completely arbitrary and ultimately pointless way for your Halloween viewing pleasure. You're welcome.
The "Best" SyFy Monster Movie That Wants To Be Tremors: Mongolian Death Worm
This 2010 film seems like it would be pretty similar to cult classic Tremors on the surface. They both have giant killer worms that burrow in the ground and.....okay, actually the similarities end there. Mongolian Death Worm is severely lacking in the Kevin Bacon department. It also features a crappy, Indiana Jones treasure hunt plot that somehow involves giant worms guarding Genghis Khan's tomb. The acting, as you might expect, is awful. The worms don't look half bad, but they aren't on screen for nearly enough time. Did I mention those giant worms guard the tomb of Genghis Khan? And...actually, you know what? Just watch Tremors. It doesn't matter which one. Yes, even the western. It's still better than this mess.
"Best" SyFy Monster Movie That Combines Two Random Animals Into One: Sharktopus
There are a lot of animals that could be combined with a shark to make a terrifying alpha-predator. A shark-lion hybrid. What about a flying shark, in the form of a shark-hawk? You could even create a sharkodile. But the B-movie master Roger Corman knew exactly what he wanted -- a shark that could tower above its victims by walking on giant tentacles. And thus Sharktopus was born. You can guess the plot: Sharktopus is a government super-weapon gone horribly out of control. It's as bad as you think it is, but there is a silver-lining to this creature feature: It spawned this bizarre, and strangely catchy, theme song. At least there's that.
"Best" SyFy Monster Movie With Mega in the Title (of which there are several): Mega Piranha
Nearly every film on this list is aware of how completely ridiculous and bad it is. Mega Piranha takes that ridiculousness and cranks it up to 11, in the process making a film so bad that you can't help but be entertained by it. There are more over-the-top scenes in this one movie than in nearly every other movie on this list combined. It's made all the better thanks to the last half of the film featuring almost non-stop giant Piranha action, as enormous man-eating fish the size of small houses leap out of the water and dive straight through the roofs of people's homes (complete with stock explosion effects), eat helicopters in one bite and fly out of the water one-by-one in an orderly fashion so the film's action hero can bicycle kick them. This movie is a cinematic gem. You heard it here first.
"Best" SyFy Monster Movie That Will Remind You Of RoboCop: RoboCroc
I'm not going to lie: RoboCroc is only on this list because if you say it fast someone might believe you are actually saying RoboCop. That doesn't mean RoboCroc isn't an important film, however. Just like RoboCop, RoboCroc too is a cautionary tale about the dangers of science and police militarization (I think). It has something to do with government nanobots latching onto a crocodile at a water park, which then, in typical SyFy movie fashion, goes on a rampage and kills everybody it can get its jaws around. Like I said, a cautionary tale.
The "Best" Obligatory SyFy Dinosaur Movie: Aztec Rex
You may have noticed there is a disturbing lack of dinosaurs on this list. Let me correct that by introducing you to Aztec Rex, a riveting historical drama that takes viewers all the way back to 1521 when Spanish Conquistadors first encountered the natives of the Aztec Empire. When I say "encountered natives" I actually mean are taken captive by natives and offered up as sacrifices to a pair of T-Rex which live in the South American jungle. Because this is SyFy, one of these conquistadors is none other than Hernán Cortés himself. What follows in an incomprehensible mess of sleeping darts, betrayals and dinosaur carnage that is best left unexplained.
The "Best" SyFy Monster Movie That Isn't Even Out Yet: Lavalantula
I know what you're thinking, "How did Sharknado 3 not win this completely pointless award?" The answer is simple: Sharknados may be spectacular, but they don't have anything on giant lava breathing spiders. I have no idea what the plot of this film is. Where do the spiders come from? A volcano? I have no idea, but it certainly doesn't look like Los Angeles is going to come out unscathed. Maybe Lavalantuala is a pseudo-sequel to SyFy film Ice Spiders, and will officially kick start a SyFy monster movie "cinematic" universe where all manner of elemental infused giant insects wreck havoc on the Earth. God save us all if that ever happens.