- Zombos’ Closet of Horror burst forth and vomited out Monster Times Issue 19 from February 1973.
- Sean Eaton brought us Schneider’s theory of Hyperconstriction and Hyperexpansion at his amazingly readable R’lyeh Tribune: “The characteristics of the hyperconstricted mode include confinement, claustrophobia, diminishing life force, descent, retreat, and isolation. Hyperconstriction directs one toward the grave—or toward the womb. Taken to an extreme, it leads toward the experience of obliteration.”
- Ginger Nuts of Horror interviewed SFX wizard Rebecca Hall: “I have always loved films ever since I can remember. I have wanted to be involved in making film. I was always arty at school always drawing faces and as I got older I started to appreciate make up and the changes it could make to your appearance so the two kind of fell together for me. I have always enjoyed horror films and thought that they always looked like the most fun to do !! As I was learning make Up I sort of discovered that I was better at the FX so from there really.”
- Sharon Day talked about her book Growing up With Ghosts at Ghost Hunting Theories: “It all began in 1963 when my family moved into an estate in Fairfax, Virginia. Aspen Grove was built in the mid 1700s as a fort against Indians. In the 1800s, it was taken over by the North to be used as a field hospital and during the war, wrestled back as the same thing for the South. Both sides of the war agonized and died in that home. In fact, the wood floors were still stained with their blood, and the earth littered with bullets, guns, bayonets and the like.”
- Morgan Freeman’s step-granddaughter (I’ve never heard of such a thing until now) was murdered by her boyfriend, who shouted some bizarre things as he committed the brutal crime: “The perpetrator, identified by the New York Post as an ex-boyfriend, screamed “Get out, devils! I cast you out, devils! In the name of Jesus Christ, I cast you out!” as he stabbed E’Dena Hines, 33, whose grandmother was Freeman’s first wife.”
- It was all Duncan Bradshaw all the time at Nev Murray’s Confessions of a Reviewer!! this week: “Right where do I start with this one? As I said previously I have discovered a new found love of zombie books, if they have something different. After agreeing to review this one I discovered it had a comedy element to it. Straight away my alarm bells go off. I like a certain amount of wit and humour in my books (the darker the better) but a comedy zombie book? Hmmm.”
- John Kenneth Muir deconstructed 2010: The Year We Make Contact: “If Kubrick’s film took a big step back from the characters and attempted to observe the long arc of man’s development with a sense of cerebral detachment, Hyams’ film instead examines man at this juncture with passionate, colorful, up-close strokes. When considered in such terms, 2010: The Year We Make Contact might be viewed as a pretty strong and, yes, wholly valid complement to Kubrick’s film. It is both a faithful continuation of the franchise’s overall narrative, and at the same time an apparent commentary on the visionary world envisioned by Kubrick.”
- Here, I reviewed the movie The Conjuring and Paul M. Feeney’s novella The Last Bus. For those inclined to the political, I wrote a piece about conservative writers and Facebook at Liberty Island.
As the weekend hurtles toward us, let’s take a long look back on the days that led up to it:
- John Kenneth Muir tackled Donnie Darko in a must-read piece: “In seeing his world end, however, Donnie experiences an epiphany. He comes to finally recognize that ‘destruction is a form of creation,’ to quote the film. His ending — his death — creates a new beginning for his family, his girlfriend, and the whole of the human race. He laughs madly immediately preceding his death, because only at the end does he recognize God’s plan for him.”
- Sean Eaton took us on a brief, disturbing trip to Carcosa in his invaluable, incredible R’lyeh Tribune: “Interestingly, The King in Yellow is not a history book or a procedural manual like its brothers on the shelf. It is a dramatic work, a play. Its creator Robert W. Chambers beguiles his readers with snatches of dialogue and song, but never provides enough of the material to cause insanity or suicide in the reader—only curiosity. His marvelous fictional work of the same name, published in 1895, is a collection of stories linked thematically around the effects of reading The King in Yellow.”
- The pressbook for Nightmare was one of the many interesting things to come out of Zombos’ Closet.
- Nev Murray reviewed Caroline Mitchell’s Don’t Turn Around at his Confessions of a Reviewer!!: “The addition of the paranormal element is a fantastic twist that keeps you glued to the story because you never really know what’s going to happen next. Jennifer doesn’t so why should you? You know the way you can guess things when the main character is still in the dark and you might scream at them to see what you see? Not with this baby you won’t. I knew who the ultimate villain in the story was from very early on. No I didn’t. I thought I did then when it became clear it wasn’t them, I finally had it sussed.” (No word on whether Der Kommissar‘s in town or not.)
- The Time of the Hawklords was a featured dish at Breakfast in the Ruins: “Given that Michael Moorcock knocked about with Hawkwind quite a bit on the Ladbroke Grove freak-scene of the early ‘70s (contributing spoken word recitations and slightly more nebulous ‘concepts’ to their ‘Space Ritual’ and ‘Warrior At The Edge of Time’ albums, amongst other things), it must have seemed splendidly inevitable that the prolific scribe should choose to immortalise his rock n’ roll mates in fiction at some point. However, the co-billing here of Michael Butterworth (a latter-day New Worlds contributor who went on to co-found the controversial Manchester imprint Savoy Books), together with the book’s absence from most Moorcock bibliographies, tells a slightly different story.”
- At Ginger Nuts of Horror, Alex Davis watched Guinea Pig: The Devil’s Experiment so you don’t have to: “It was particularly made infamous when, in 1991, the second movie in the series, Flower of Flesh and Blood, was investigated by the FBI as potentially being a genuine snuff film. The sixth film in the series, Devil Woman Doctor, was also found in the collection of serial killer Tsutomu Miyazaki, which only added to the movies’ dark reputation.”
- Here, I reviewed the zombie apocalypse film Wyrmwood and pointed you to a trio of brand-new reviews of The Blessed Man and the Witch.
I was honored to write a blurb for the book, and Ginger Nuts of Horror has published an extract from it available nowhere else online.
“Adam Howe’s Gator Bait is a steamy, disquieting piece of bayou noir that you can’t help but eat all in one sitting. It won’t settle your stomach, but it will stay with you long after you’ve digested it.”
Click the link, read the blurb and extract, and buy the novella. At $0.99, it’s a steal!
It’s been a long, draggy sort of week, but you made it to Friday! Let’s celebrate by looking back on what happened over the last several days:
- Martin Lastrapes did a podcast with one of my favorite people in horror, the inimitable Jasper Bark.
- At the always-readable R’lyeh Tribune, Sean Eaton analyzed my favorite Lovecraft story, The Shadow Out of Time: “Its broad panorama of Earth’s existence in time and space, combined with its well-wrought depiction of the Great Old Ones and their interaction with human destiny form the basis for all kinds of interesting narrative possibilities. Had the author survived the late 1930s, The Shadow Out of Time would have made an excellent starting place from which Lovecraft might have launched additional novel-length projects.”
- The Film Connoisseur reviewed Pixels: “What this movie is though is a nostalgia bomb. If you were born in the 80’s and played video games in arcades the way I did, you will feel a shot of nostalgia in your system. I have to admit it was cool seeing a giant Pac-Man eating up taxi cabs and city streets, especially since I’m such a Pac-Man nut! It was awesome seeing a giant King Kong throwing barrels at Adam Sandler, and then there’s this scene where they simply throw as many old video game characters on the screen as they can, so you’ll see Frogger, Q-bert, Paperboy, Centipede, Galaga, Space Invaders…and that’s without counting all the other characters from 80’s pop culture that show up in the film like Max Headroom, Ronald Reagan, Madonna and Hall & Oates.”
- In Detroit, a statue depicting Baphomet, the Prince of Darkness, was unveiled: “Ultimately, the Satanic Temple hopes to have the statue placed permanently next to a sculpture of the Ten Commandments monument now in place near a state courthouse in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, or outside Arkansas’ Statehouse in Little Rock, where a Ten Commandments monument also is planned.”
- Nev Murray reviewed Adam Cesare’s novel Mercy House at his Confessions of a Reviewer!!: “Our main characters in this book stand out big and tall for varying reasons. Harriett is nuts. There is no doubt about that. Her son Don and his wife Nikki are doing the best they can for her. She doesn’t see it like that. When the “thing” happens her level of nuttiness multiplies by a million. She goes on a horrific rampage with only one mission. Get Nikki.”
- Zombos’ Closet belched out an awesome pressbook from the 1959 film The Rebel Set.
- John Kenneth Muir reached back into the 1960’s to bring us that classic TV show The Invaders: “In this case, the series depicts a WASP-y figure of the establishment (David Vincent) suddenly introduced to the new America of the mid-to-late 1960s; the sub-culture or emerging counter-culture. Through his “radical” belief in an alien invasion, Vincent finds himself shunned by figures of the American ruling class (co-workers, government officials, the wealthy, and so forth) and even hunted by them (particularly the police force). These individuals now view Vincent with disdain because he has forsaken his safe “role” in white, middle-class American society for that of a prophet…a doomsayer warning of planetary emergency.”
- Jim Mcleod himself reviewed the horror movie Scream Machine at his Ginger Nuts of Horror: “Scream Machine could be viewed in one of two ways, it could be looked at as a loving homage to the works of Troma, or it can be viewed as a pile of steaming shit. I would imagine that some of it will come down to just how much you like Troma films. However, I don’t think that the filmmakers’ mothers, after drinking a potion of kindness, could view this film as anything other than a pile of steaming shit.” Read the whole thing to get the full effect.
- Ghost Hunting Theories may have found proof of ancient giants in the Grand Canyon: “We also have a legend of ancient giants being found in a cave in the Grand Canyon, hiding from a catastrophe with an inventory of all their seeds and animals and treasures by a man named Kinkaid in the early 1900s.”
- Here, I talked about the new masculinity and pointed you to a review I wrote of Alan Rodgers’s novel Fire.
At Jim Mcleod’s Ginger Nuts of Horror, I reviewed Alan Rodgers’s novel Fire:
“It’s got Biblical apocalypse, nuclear bombs, and a weird, somehow benign Beast of Revelation with magical abilities.”
The novel was originally published in 1990. Does it still hold up? Click to find out!
At Jim Mcleod’s Ginger Nuts of Horror, I reviewed the graphic novel Bloodfellas. Jasper Bark wrote the script, Mick Trimble did the drawing, and Aljoša Tomić colored it.