Articles for Horror: “My Bloody Valentine”

Plot summary of the 1981 slasher “My Bloody Valentine.”



VHS cover of The Miner in a gas mask in “My Bloody Valentine.”

Autumn Castle, Staff Writer

This article contains spoilers!

Who was The Miner?

Harry Warden, known as The Miner, was a fictional character and the antagonist of the Valentine’s Day-themed horror film “My Bloody Valentine.”

He was an urban legend of the town of Valentine Bluffs. He was believed to unleash hell upon people who do the forbidden Valentine’s Day dance.

The character debuted when slashers were first getting known in the film industry after “The Texas Chain Saw Massacre” was released. He was widely recognized for his gas mask and miner outfit and gained a cult status in the horror genre fandom despite only appearing in two films.

What was “My Bloody Valentine?”

20 years ago in the mining town of Valentine Bluffs, a methane gas explosion at Hanniger Coal Mine, trapped five miners in a shaft while the other men who were a part of the crew left early to attend the town’s Valentine’s Day dance. 

Six weeks later, the only survivor of the accident, Harry Warden, was rescued; he survived by eating his dead coworkers and went crazy from being trapped in the mines. After a year in a mental hospital, he escaped on Valentine’s Day. He killed and cut out the heart of the rest of his crew, leaving a warning that the same would happen if the town ever held a Valentine’s Day celebration again.

With the legend of Harry Warden being nothing but a memory to the people in the town, a group of young miners and their girlfriends decided that the town needed to have a party and celebrate the holiday. 

As the night of the party approached, the psycho in mining gear began to kill people in their town in bloody and inventive ways. The town mayor and sheriff quickly realized it must be Harry Warden who was said to have returned to the institution, but whose whereabouts were never confirmed.

Despite the things happening in the town, they continue with their plans for a dance, ignoring the “rumors” of  Harry Warden. 

Finally, the night of the dance  arrived; and as The Miner killed off several of the people attending the party, young adults T.J., Axel, Sarah, and Patty decided to go into the mines to explore and impress their partners. As they realized that a killer was on the loose and some of their group was missing, T.J. and Axel went to search for them.

The Miner had followed them into the mine, and killed most of the group, forcing T.J., Axel, Sarah, and Patty to try to escape. Axel and Patty were murdered, leaving only T.J. and Sarah alive. 

On the surface, the Mayor and Sheriff had found out that Harry Warden died five years prior and were preparing to lead a group of men into the mines. 

In the mine, The Miner attacked T.J. and Sarah on a moving rail line and the fight was forced into an abandoned shaft where the ceiling was about to collapse. The killer was revealed to be not Warden, but Axel. A flashback revealed that he saw the murder of his father, one of the crewmates, by Harry Warden when he was young.

The ceiling then collapsed and buried Axel alive. His arm was the only thing that was visible, but as they try to rescue him it is soon discovered that Axel had cut off his own arm to escape. Through a hole in the wall, T.J., Sarah, and the police watched as a deranged Axel ran deeper into the mine and called out to Harry Warden, and asked that Sarah be his “Bloody Valentine.”

How successful was “My Bloody Valentine”?

“My Bloody Valentine” was released on Feb. 11, 1981 by Paramount Pictures, going along with Valentine’s holiday. Despite mixed responses from critics, it grossed $5.7 million at the box office. The film has developed a large cult following over the years since its release.