Otesánek, also known as Otik, is a monster of Czech folklore, appearing as the titular main antagonist in the 19th-century fairytale of the same name by Karel Jaromír Erben and the 2000 film Little Otik. He is a sentient log stump who comes to life and eats everything he comes across to fill his endless belly.

Biography

Long ago, there lived a couple that long wished to be granted a child. One day, while uprooting tree stumps, the husband finds a small stump with roots shaped like human appendages and decides to bring it home for his grieving wife to serve as their baby. To the couple's surprise, the wooden baby comes to life and is named Otesánek.

At first, the couple are thrilled to have their wish for a child granted, but things soon take a turn for the worst as Otesánek has a seemingly endless appetite, forcing his parents to pay what little money they had for food to give to their intolerant son. Eventually, Otesánek grows large enough to devour his parents and escapes home to cause panic in the village, devouring everything that stood in his way. Ultimately, Otesánek was killed when an elderly woman uses a hoe to slice open the monster's chest after eating her cabbage patch, freeing everyone who was eaten by him in the process.

Little Otik

The story of Otesánek was inspired by the Czech stop-motion filmmaker Jan Švankmajer for the 2000 Czech comedy-horror drama film Little Otik, released internationally as Greedy Guts. Similar to the legend, a couple (Karel and Božena) are unable to conceive a child for medical reasons until Karel uproots a tree stump that resembles a baby and gives it to his depressed wife. Božena names it Otik and treats it like a real baby, even faking a pregnancy to have Otik documented as her real son. To both of his parents' surprise, Otik comes to life and has an insatiable appetite.

Despite Karel's protests to his wife that the gluttonous stump was not their real child, Božena slowly loses her sanity in believing that Otik is her baby, unaware of the dangerous capabilities that he has. This comes when Otik eats some of Božena's hair, forcing Karel to cut it. Later, they come home to discover that Otik has eaten their cat. Karel and Božena argue over what to do with Otik; Karel insists that they kill him while Božena wants to protect him. Meanwhile, Otik grows massive through all of the food that he ate and devours a postman and later a social worker that attempts to take him away.

Unable to bring himself to kill his "son", Karel ties Otik up and drags him to the basement and locked in a crate to starve, much to Božena's distress. Meanwhile, Alžbětka, a girl in the apartment who finds similarities between Otik and the story of Otesánek, frees it from its constraints and decides to care for Otik herself, forcing him to stay in the crate in exchange of providing him food. Her mother soon stops her, so Alžbětka is forced to decide who to feed to Otik. She picks Mr. Žlábek, an elderly pedophile who occasionally stalks her. She lures Mr. Žlábek to the basement in front of Otik's crate, who grabs him with his vines and swallows him whole.

Hearing of Mr. Žlábek's disappearance, Karel immediately believes that Otik is the culprit and enters the basement equipped with a chainsaw. When Otik emerges from the crate, Karel hesitates and drops the chainsaw, calling his "son" before Otik attacks him. Božena runs into the basement after her husband and is heard screaming, implying that Otik ate them. As Otik grows even larger, he becomes aggressive to Alžbětka and disobeys her commands by reaching out of the basement window to devour Mrs. Správcová's cabbage patch, prompting the old woman to charge into the basement equipped with a hoe. The film ends with Alžbětka crying at the top of the basement stairs, knowing what is to become of Otik’s fate.

Trivia

  • In Little Otik, Otik was primarily animated using stop-motion, but there are some scenes where he is either animated using puppetry or a suit, such as when he attacks the social worker.
  • The trailer for Little Otik was used to make the Creepypasta "The Grifter".

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