Tuesday, October 31, 2017

A Tribute to Paul Naschy

How best to describe Paul Naschy? Was he Lon Chaney with the face of John Saxon? Was he the Vincent Price of Spain? To tell you the truth, Paul Naschy was one of a kind. Actor, director, screenwriter, and even sometimes producer. He wore every mask at one point or another, and played ever role, from Wolfman to Frankenstein, to Dracula, and even Satan himself.

Where Lon Chaney Jr played the American Wolfman, Naschy's Casanova version of the role practically chewed the scenery. No matter the quality of a film, the poor dubbing, or awful edited versions that have been butchered a hundred times for American audiences, there's no denying how compelling Naschy still is in those films. He was just that good. He was also known to be a fantastic, down-to-earth kind of person, too, which goes a long way in my book for any major star.

Shout Factory just released some epic collections of Naschy films I'd like to get my hands on, having settled for some of those more questionable releases I've mentioned, and it was about time too.

I couldn't resist ending on this fantastic tribute video I found. I hope some day more of the world will really come to appreciate this brilliant man. Oh, and by the way, happy halloween!

Monday, October 30, 2017

Vintage Comics: The Beyond #2: Valley of the Scaly Monsters, Bubble of Destruction, The Shrieking Terror (Pg. 16- End)

Running behind on some grad school homework, gang, so I figured I'd share the rest of this comic issue before I hide behind the books. Since I usually take undetermined hiatus after October anyway, I didn't want to leave you waiting either. Tomorrow, for Halloween, I'll be featuring a write-up on a very special actor.

Sunday, October 29, 2017

Vintage Comics: The Beyond #2: The Mystery of Lunablanca & The Ghost who Stole a Body (Cover-Pg. 15)

Coming close to Halloween! 2 more days! So why not journey back to one of the first comic series I shared here, 'The Beyond', and continue on into their 2nd issue? I am still fascinated by the glorious colors in this series, and pleased with how the color correction came out this time around. Yes, I do moderate color correction on these comics sometimes when the yellow balance is too high.

Absolutely adore the villain-esque designs of the Countess Sinestra 'transforming' from a bat into a bat...woman...vampire-thing. I have a feeling if this had ever been adapted to the screen, Barbara Steele would have been ideal for the roles of both women.

As for the second story, the ghost art was absolutely stunning, with much heavier ink lines than we normally see in these comics. Perhaps a little dialog heavy, most of them are, but well worth the read just for the gorgeous panels alone.

Saturday, October 28, 2017

Drive-in Trailers: Anthology Horror

Sometimes you want something besides a full-on horror film. You want a taste of several things. A creepy cornucopia. A vicious variety. A -something something alliteration scary-. That's where anthology horror takes the cake. I've always loved short stories, on the page and on the screen. Hopefully the following trailers (obscure and mainstream) can give you something new to watch this Halloween.

The first trailer isn't a real one, from what I can tell, but anyone who hasn't seen 'Dead of Night' is really doing themselves a disservice. It's one of the best. Also, note that I adore all of the Amicus films, but it'd be a bit boring if I just focused on them alone. Also, reserving any Price-related trailers for a strictly Vincent Price-centric post.

Friday, October 27, 2017

My 2017 Reddit Halloween Secret Santa

Hey guys! This year I participated in the Reddit Halloween Secret Santa (for what I believe makes it three times). He/she made an awesome go of it, numbering as one of my top (if not my absolute favorite) Santas of all the exchanges I've participated in. For those of you who've never done Reddit Secret Santa (or don't even know what it is), it's a great way to give gifts to strangers after only a moderate level of internet stalking, and then getting gifts in return from others. Anyway, I figured I'd share a little of the holiday joy I got this week, and post the photos, but you can also check out the main thank you page here!

Thursday, October 26, 2017

Book of the Week: Look for Me By Moonlight by Mary Downing Hahn

I'm sure I've gone on tirades before about what makes a real vampire (or a good one), and the fact that they are not in fact romantic heroes. Dracula, especially, was nothing if not a predator and monster. Now that I've gotten that out of the way, I'd like to tell you guys about a wonderfully dark little book I first discovered in middle school, and fell in love with. There's a romantic gloss to the cover, and a sweet title, belying the dark story behind it.

If you wanted Sarah to pick Jareth in Labyrinth, perhaps this book isn't for you. Bowie was gorgeous with his typical glam rock beauty, but he was a man pursuing a little girl who wanted to prove to the world she was a woman. There's a similar vein in this book about a young girl named Cynda vacationing with her family and trying to find her own way, isolated from the father and stepmother she doesn't know, as well as the little brother she doesn't really like. Then, Vincent shows up, and suddenly everything is different. It gets darker, and pretty soon the game Cynda thinks she's playing spirals out of control. It's a young adult novel, and certainly appropriate for the audience, but the heart of the story is a disturbing one, and that's what makes this book so fantastic.

Wednesday, October 25, 2017

Horror Flick of the Week: 1922 (2017)

I swear I'm not trying to be King-centric this month, but I just watched this movie yesterday and it was amazing. It's on par with the absolute best film adaptations of King stories, and miles ahead of the worst ones (I'm looking at you 'Sometimes They Come Back Again' and 'Maximum Overdrive', even though I secretly love you both.) This also may be the first Netflix original I've recommended on here, which actually makes me think I'll have to do a short list of must-see Netflix horror later.

After the establishing sequence with the cracking walls, I was hooked. Ghosts. Rats. Guilt. Murder. Greed. There's so much atmosphere, powerful direction, fantastic acting and cinematography. Thomas Jane was unrecognizable, and he really earned a lot of respect from me for his performance. He is what ultimately makes this dark horror, about a man living a hard life of his own accord and destroying it spectacularly over the course of one year, through a combination of his own choices and reaping what he sows. 1922. If you haven't seen it yet, do yourself a favor and watch it tonight.

Tuesday, October 24, 2017


Since I promised more craftiness this year, I think it's about time I make good on my promise. None of these awesome origami designs are of my own creation, but they're all pretty awesome anyway. Video or diagram, these patterns are sure to help you budget for some last minute decor and have a bit of spooky fun with your kids while you're at it!

Patterns listed above are, sadly, not of my own creation. I found them at these awesome sites, and if you're looking for less creepy patterns, definitely check them out: 
- Origami-Fun
- Origami Resource Center

Monday, October 23, 2017

Popcorn Ball Recipes

Leaving town this weekend, so I've got to get this one ready for you guys fast! Halloween is an epic time for all things sweet and/or spooky, but sometimes chocolate just doesn't cut it. You want something more substantial, yet easy to transport without getting your fingers coated in delicious salty butter grease. So, why not try a couple of popcorn balls? It's got the best of all the candy food groups: salty, sweet, compact, and classic! So, without further ado, check out some awesome recipes I found by amazing creators!

Sunday, October 22, 2017

Featured Fear: Pedophobia (fear of children/childhood)

There are those who love them. Then, there are those who hate them. Finally, there are those who fear them. Children. Often depicted in film as the epitome of innocence, and in some of the most disturbing horror you'll find quite the opposite. The Bad Seed, The Good Son, Village of the Damned, Children of the Corn, Bloody Birthday, the list goes on. And on. And on. 

To quote Georgia Coiner (and maybe Wikipedia too), "children embarrass us because they point ever too cleverly and clearly to our denial of personal, material, and maternal history." I'll admit, I wasn't exactly an angel myself, and this phobia in particular leaves me scratching my head, but it's all too real. Some sources I've scanned seem to indicate that it's not entirely the fear of children, but the fear of what children may do that really motivates this phobia. Children on the cusp of adulthood in particular, ranging from the ages of 12-14. After all, at that age, raging puberty can drive kids to do pretty crazy things.

With a lot of adults deciding to forego parenthood in western countries, too, they're a little less exposed to kids in their daily lives, and generally may develop a general distrust that may eventually develop into pedophobia, but it's not altogether likely to happen to most of us.

Then, there's the fear of childhood itself, which is really more of a fear of thinking about it, stemming from general trauma as a kid (don't all of these phobias seem to come from that?) The most common, and frankly easiest treatment advised for pedophobia is basic exposure therapy. In time, parent or not, almost anyone can overcome their fear if they try.

Now, with that being said, how about a short skit from College Humor to remind you exactly why you should reconsider getting over your fear?

Saturday, October 21, 2017

Vintage Comics: Nightmare, Issue #3: The Wonderful Wizard, The Quivering Brain, The Witches Sabbath, etc. (Pg. 14 - End)

With so many stories packed into so few pages, I was unable to fit them all in the title, so the additional two at the end of this comic are: 'Charles Fort, The Supreme Doubter' and 'Crafton's Curse'.The first story here seems to have far too much stuff packed into each page for the reader to follow the first time around, and there's an additional character drawing eerily reminiscent of Peter Cushing (but just a little too early for that to be anything but a coincidence.) It's actually the 'true story', albeit brief, of Daniel Dunglas Home, a man reputed to be able to fly, levitate objects, contact the dead, and predict the future. I can't imagine what a show by that guy would've been like, and I definitely plan on doing a write-up of him in the future. I mean if you look up photos of him, the guy's as magnificent as Oscar Wilde in his famous leaning portrait.

The next story gets points just for the title alone. THE QUIVERING BRAIN. You're also required to always scream a title like that, announcer-style. It's impossible not to. It's a bit melodramatic, I'm not going to lie, but I think the concept alone makes it one of my favorite stories I've featured on this blog so far. Then we're lead into a disturbing summary of what constitutes a proper witch's sabbath, a summary of a historically influential skeptic named Charles Fort, and another story about a mobster getting his just desserts.

All-in-all, not an incredible issue, but some of the concepts are at least ripe for modern revisions.