Eddie was a serial killer and werewolf who stalked the streets of Los Angeles in the early 1980s. After gaining some moderate level of notoriety after a series of killings, he developed an attraction to KDHD news anchor Karen White. Eddie contacted Karen and arranged to meet with her. Karen informed her supervisors as well as local law enforcement and they used her as part of a sting operation to finally get their hands on the mysterious "Eddie the Mangler".
Karen met with Eddie at an adult book store. Karen went to the shop wearing a wire, but the excessive neon found in this particular neighborhood prevented the police from keeping track of her movements.
She met Eddie inside a private movie booth and Eddie forced her to watch a film of a woman being raped. He wouldn't let Karen see his face, but spoke to her in low, even tones. After extolling his personal philosophy to her, he entreated Karen to turn around. Upon doing so, she saw Eddie undergo the beginning of a transformation into a werewolf. At this time, police officers entered the establishment and upon hearing Karen scream in terror emptied their firearms into the booth, seemingly killing Eddie in the process. Karen was so traumatized by the incident that she blanked the entire experience from her memory. Eddie's body was then taken to the morgue awaiting identification.
Karen's co-workers, Chris Halloran and Terry Fisher continued to research the Eddie the Mangler case. They located the apartment he stayed in while working as a dishwasher in the city. The residence was filled with sketches that Eddie had made, detailing people in various forms of werewolf transformation. One sketch that stood out from the others was that of a lake view landscape. They also found that he had signed his work and discovered his last name -- Quist. Chris and Terry brought the sketches to psychiatrist Doctor George Waggner for analysis.They later went to the morgue to inspect Eddie's body, but when the coroner opened the locker drawer, the body was gone. The interior of the door was mangled, as if someone had tried to claw their way out.
Being a werewolf, Eddie had survived the shooting, as he was only vulnerable to weapons made of silver. After escaping from the morgue, he made his way back to the "Colony" - a community retreat established by George Waggner that served as a haven for werewolves.
He encountered Terri Fisher in Doctor Waggner's office in full werewolf form. Terri tried to escape, but Eddie slaughtered her, leaving her bloody body on top of a desk. He then returned to his human form, but still suffered from a bullet wound in the center of his forehead.
He then had a surprise reunion with Karen White who, upon Doctor Waggner's recommendation, had come to the colony to recover from her initial traumatic experience with Eddie.
Eddie decided to finish what he had started in Los Angeles. Telling Karen that he wanted to give her "a piece of my mind", Eddie then dug the bullet out of his skull, and began a gradual, protracted transformation into his werewolf form. Karen watched in horror, but before Eddie could complete the transformation, she picked up a jar of sulfuric acid from Waggner's desk and splashed it on Eddie. Eddie reeled in pain and Karen ran for her life.
Chris Halloran, having since learned the truth about Eddie Quist, came to the Colony armed with silver bullets in search of Terri and Karen. He found Terri's corpse in Waggner's office, at which point, Eddie sauntered back into the office. His face and body were hideously burned from the acid, but otherwise, he was still healthy. Eddie taunted Chris and began to shape-shift once again. Chris shot him in the throat with his rifle and the silver bullet ended Eddie Quist's life once and for all.
- Eddie Quist is loosely based on a sexual predator named Max from Gary Brandner's original novel of the Howling.
- The character of Eddie Quist has gained notability in horror film lore, for he is the first of the modern revisionist werewolves. The complexity of Rick Baker's werewolf transformation sequences earned him the 1981 Saturn Award nomination for Best Special Effects. 
- The landscape sketch that Terri finds in Eddie's apartment is based on the environs surrounding the Colony. At the Colony, Terri comes upon the coastline from which Eddie drew his inspiration.
- Another of Eddie's sketches is that of a partially transformed female werewolf. This is possibly meant to be his sister, Marsha.
- Robert Picardo went on to play The Doctor on the TV series Star Trek: Voyager.
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