Saturday, July 7, 2012

(Insane News) Why don't you read this article about a woman passing 63 kidney stones over three days while I crawl under my desk and sob?





..."This is a big one," she said as she held one of the stones in the palm of her hand.

The one she held in her hand was too big for Calderon to pass, so she had to have it surgically removed at Shawnee Mission Medical Center. She said her largest kidney stone was eight millimeters big. 

But she said things got really bad last week when doctors had to remove a stint they were using to keep her passages open because it developed a blockage.

"He pulled the stint and it felt like I had five kids because, what he didn't know, is there were five calcified kidney stones that had formed to the stint," Calderon said.

And Calderon said removing the stint essentially opened the flood gates. By her count, she said she passed 63 stones over the next three days in the hospital.

"It's just one after another, after another, after another, and I was just holding on to my hospital chair like 'oh my gosh,'" she said.

It's hard to say if some of the stones she passed were broken pieces, or separate stones each, but the effect was obvious.

"There's nothing that compares to this, absolutely nothing, this is the most painful thing," Calderon said of her experience...


for more click here

Check out this new page I made to show off all the cool artwork I have gotten from my cool friends over the years!

You can check it out anytime at the link called THE ART GALLERY



by Jorge Prieto



by Chris Scheetz

by Chris Scheetz

by Chris Scheetz

by Francis James Hogan



by George Vasilakos


by George Vasilakos


by Rebecca Whitaker

by Wayne Anderson

by Wayne Anderson

by Rebecca Whitaker

by Francis James Hogan

by Chris Scheetz


by Ryan Dunlavey


by Jorge Prieto

by Chris Scheetz

by Rebecca Whitaker


by Rebecca Jones

by Chris Scheetz

by Wayne Anderson


Thanks to Chris Scheetz for this drawing of Jack Diamond!

Friday, July 6, 2012

AWFUL LIBRARY BOOKS brings us face-to-face with DR. DEVASTATING!

When Wesley met Carl



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Thursday, July 5, 2012

Somewhere between Thomas Ligotti and Neil Gaiman is the world of THE SECRET KNOTS

THE JUDGEMENT OF PARIS shares the sad and delightful cartoon 'Wrong Century'


“Wrong Century” — Brilliant illustration by artist Tomas Kucerovsky depicting the fate of plus-size beauty in the modern age...





Al Bruno III

The living room is quiet and dark, the only light comes from the laptop screen. The children are asleep and morning is hours away. I have more than enough time.

The header of the web page reads;

“/r/nosleep - Because you weren’t planning on sleeping anyway....”

I skim the titles and the stories knowing that I will find nothing new, nothing unique or groundbreaking. I love it anyway, no one comes to this site expecting anything more. The stories here are old as the hills, hackneyed legends with new names. Before the Internet they traveled via hushed phone conversations and hastily scrawled letters. Before that they were passed back and forth across campfires, exchanged like currency.

“...and some say that broken bones taste best to Kara Muerte...”

I never had much patience for stories of any kind, not when there are so many deep red truths to explorer, but this place, this /r/nosleep holds my attention because the tales and their tellers insist that their words be treated like gospels.

That’s why it says on every page;

“Everything you read in /r/nosleep is true...”

Every time I see that I want to laugh out loud but for now I will content myself with a chuckle. After all the children are sleeping...

I thought I heard something. I went to check the house and the doors. I have to learn to be careful, this story will change my entire world.

Where was I? Everything is true.

Everything is true. Do any of the consumers or contributors to /r/nosleep even understand that no story can ever be true? Simply by trying to describe an event we adorn it or scale it back, just like a fisherman bragging a lost catch.

“/r/nosleep - Because you weren’t planning on sleeping anyway....”

The foolishness of it all makes me chuckle quietly. What is the difference between a memory and a story? They're all just words, words and ideas traveling from one mind to another like a mania or virus. Do you really think every city has an escaped lunatic with a hook for a hand? Do you really think there are vengeful child-ghosts stalking the lost places of the world?

“ slouched in the darkness like some great beast waiting to pounce on the weak and unwary...”

Most reasonable people would scoff, but the readers here on /r/nosleep want to believe and sometimes that is more than enough.

All of us here. We read, we remember, we try to believe and slowly, ever so slowly the stories burrow through our minds like a cancer, ruining and re purposing.



“Everything you read in /r/nosleep is true...”

What is it the more religiously inclined people are want to say? Faith manages.

Yes, it does.

“...something yowls in the moonlight...”

Scraps of tales cloud the edges of my vision, childish fears, adult dreads and cruel impossibilities. Tell me /r/nosleep, what have we created? What can be worse than a nightmare?

Let me tell you this;

There is a dead woman at my feet. Her blood has soaked into the carpet, a stain spreads out from her head like a halo. Her husband is by the front door, an icepick in his chest. Neither of them ever had time to cry out, their faces are still and surprised.

Perhaps that is cruelest and most untrue story of all, that Mommy and Daddy will protect us from the monsters but we know better don’t we my fellow contributors?

“The living room is quiet and dark, the only light comes from the laptop screen. The children are asleep and morning is hours away. I have more than enough time...”

Everything you read in /r/nosleep is true.

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Batman vs Spider-Man: THE BATTLE THAT HAD TO HAPPEN! (on the subway?) (in Toronto?)

In this corner THE CAPED CRUSADER!

In this corner OLD WEB HEAD!

The Joker is coming back to the comics, can we face it?



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FALSE POSITIVE used the word 'pissant'! I love the word 'pissant'!

Well, isn't this terrifying.

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(Insane News) Who can put the squeeze on 'the buxom bandit'?



The woman, who has been dubbed the "buxom bandit" by police, entered the Arundel service station around 12:30 AM and headed for the cash register. Hoping her pronounced cleavage would distract the CCTV camera away from her clearly visible face, the woman proceeded to threaten the attendant with a knife and demand money...

LIFE, DOCTOR WHO & COMBOM has series 7 light spoilers and episode titles...



Writer: Steven Moffat
Director: Nick Hurran
D.O.P.: Neville Kidd
Staring: Matt Smith (The Doctor), Karen Gillan (Amy Pond), Arthur Darvill (Rory Williams), Nick Briggs (Voice of Daleks), Barnaby Edwards (Dalek Operator) ,Matt Doman (TBA), David Gyasi (TBA), 
Synopsis: Daleks - one of the most feared beings in all the universe. The Daleks are back in more than one of their 'styles' and they are interfering with the doctors companions life, which causes him to come crashing back into their life! After Rory is kidnapped can Amy or the Doctor get him back alive or will the Asylum of the Daleks drive him insane? (Written up by Skaro)

Even now yet once again it's that time again! My semi-regular request for your patronage...

Make a donation! All money donated goes to upkeep and art and much needed grammar lessons! All donors will be listed on the PATRONS' PAGE!

I promise I won't use the money to buy fireworks!

Some 4th of July fiction fireworks with AMERICAN MONSTER!



When they hoisted me up from the bottom of the well, I almost found myself mourning the silence and the darkness. The wooden cross I had been lashed to had long since rotted away but the weighted chains were still about my limbs. They rattled as my long dormant limbs shuddered and flexed; with each blink of my eyes my vision returned and became more precise.


There were four people in the basement of the abandoned Georgetown manor. The two closest to me were a tall woman and a little man. They wore pale blue hospital gowns, caps and surgical masks that puffed in and out with every word or breath. Rubber gloves covered their hands and thick, brown-stained aprons with pockets that hung heavy with the tools of their trade. They looked me over with clinical fascination and spoke as though I was some kind of long lost heirloom.


Which I suppose I am.


The two men near the door were tall, detached and statue still, they both had handguns hidden beneath their black suits. I recognized them as Agents of the Pharos project immediately but all that meant was that they were just new breeds of a very old kind of dog.


They always think I am helpless.


I let them examine me for a time, poking and prodding but all the while I could feel the trembling in my limbs weakening. An hour into the assessment put them to the test.


Rust and time had left my bonds weakened, with a single motion I pulled my right arm free. Links of rusted steel scattered everywhere, clattering on the floor and bouncing off the walls. The woman shouted, her surgical mask puffing out comically. My hands tore into the soft flesh of the little man's throat. Robbed of his voice he could only beg for mercy with his eyes.


And how he begged!


I tightened my grip feeling the blood well up around my fingertips. With a final pull the cartilage snapped and came away. I let the man’s body fall to the cellar floor, all the while leering at the woman.


The two Pharos Agents drew their weapons and fired. The woman was caught in the crossfire; bullets tore through her flesh to bury themselves in mine.


So many years, so many bullets.


Pulling free of the last of the chains I raised myself up to my full height. One of them bellowed for me to surrender. I made swift work of them, bending their bodies and twisting their limbs. I let one of them twitch for a while as I tried to assess what fresh surprises this new administration might have in store for me.


Then I made my way to the top of the stairs. The door was locked but it tore off the hinges easily enough.


A figure greeted me at the top of the landing; a tall, slump shouldered figure, with thick mismatched arms and undersized legs.


The head atop those massive shoulders was dracocephalic; with small close-set eyes, a nose broken beyond all hope of healing and a cruel line of a mouth. Everywhere there were scars, making the brutish figure seem as tattered and threadbare as the clothes it wore. Miss-set bones jutted at odd angles; thick, rope like veins bulged against yellowed skin.


Bringing both fists down I smashed the full length mirror; the monstrous image fragmented and collapsed in on itself. Broken glass cracked under my bare feet as I moved through interior of the empty house. I could still remember the expensive furniture that had once crowded every room and the elegant oil paintings that hung on every wall. Now was only dust. I felt myself begin to laugh.


Once a great and learned man lived here, a noted historian and a mediocre mystic; he had believed he could make a civilized being of me, that he could make me manageable with his soothing words and opiates. I toyed with him for months, aping the results he wanted, telling him just what he expected to hear. Then one day he came home to find I had escaped my bonds, dismembered his sons, smashed his wife's skull to fragments and raped his daughter.


How she squirmed beneath me as I whispered to her the secrets only I knew. The knowledge drove her mad…


The expression on his face however was mine and mine alone and I still treasured it. I like to think he might have tried to kill me had there not been Agents of the Pharos project there with him that day. No agent of any administration would ever allow me to come to harm; I can never truly be punished, merely imprisoned until I am needed again.


And I will always be needed, that is my power.


Laughter echoing off the bare walls I headed out into the dusk, keeping out of sight as best I could. The air was warm but heavy with the odor of chemicals. Cars moved in an orderly procession down the streets, lampposts flickered to life, and citizens walked to and fro, enjoying the summer weather. I marveled at how much Sussex County could change in less than a decade, at how much one nation could change.


My mouth watered at the thought of what other wonders might be waiting for me but I knew I had to move carefully. By now my captors would be aware I had escaped once more and they would be desperate in their panic.


They have to be subtle, afraid to let anyone know there are still giants in the Earth.


Concealing myself until I had the full cover of night I spent an hour searching until I found a man with proportions near to mine. He was jogging, his respiration steady his expression vacant. I dragged him off the street and killed him bloodlessly.


It felt good to have clean clothes against my skin, especially clothes that stretched so easily to accommodate my frame. I found my way to the railroad tracks and followed them south.


Hours and miles passed with ease but I knew that soon the constellation of Lyra would be in ascendance and I would be helpless. I needed security, and I needed nourishment. Opportunity presented itself in the form of a house just off the main road. I kicked in the front door, surprising the family gathered around the television set.


I am always hungry, even now.


The patriarch of the family challenged me. I struck him and felt his ribs splinter. Blood spilled from his mouth, staining my new clothes. His wife and four children screamed as one. I subdued them easily, crippling them but making sure they stayed alive.


I ate the patriarch, starting with the soft entrails and working my way to the marrow. His wife and children begged and pleaded but their cries only sweetened the meal. It had been too long since I had last eaten but it had been well worth the wait; this new generation of citizens had been raised like veal, protected and sheltered.


Even raw, the meat falls right off the bones.


With that sanguine desire sated I demonstrated my gratitude by teaching the woman the secret of how to foretell the future from spilled entrails.


By her third child she found the trick of it.


Clad in an ill-fitting suit and heavy jacket I left the house behind. I followed the tracks again until I found a train yard. I didn’t see any guards or fences so I climbed into the first abandoned cattle car I could find.


Even with the shadows drawn in close I couldn’t fully relax, a fluttering nameless suspicion nagged at me. I picked idly at the fresh bullet wounds while waiting for the stars to be right. Having tried to ascertain my future, I naturally found my thoughts returning to my past.


My life began under the stars, in 1784 in an open air laboratory designed and built by Thomas Jefferson. He was working from Ben Franklin's notes and those notes in turn were stolen from the royal mystics of France. Franklin had refused to aid in my creation; the memories of his own disastrous experiments still haunted him.


Thomas Jefferson did not work alone that night however. A series of ever more dangerous setbacks led him to commission Jedediah Orne to assist him in his endeavors. Orne was only too happy to visit the young nation and aid in translating and supplementing Jefferson’s incomplete transcription of The Talos Formulae. Jefferson was determined that the new fledgling nation would have an avatar on par with the articulate, wise and beautiful creatures that had advised the royalty of the world since the age of antiquity.


Orne however was determined to put some of his own more radical theories to the test.


No ash and copper wire for him! Or for me.


My original body was that of a long forgotten Egyptian Lord, shriveled and grayish but perfectly preserved. Once he had been a god king but grave robbers had ransacked his tomb and sold his remains as a curio. Jedediah Orne worked tirelessly in Jefferson’s laboratory, using The Talos Formulae more as a guideline than a gospel. Runes were carved beneath the mummy’s tongue, at the bottoms of his feet and most importantly on the underside of his skull. Where mechanical contrivances and ash had been called for, Orne used the flesh of the recently dead in combinations specifically chosen to create sorcerous fission.


The heart of a patriot. The blood of one a native. The brain of a traitor.


I came to life in a haze of alchemical smoke. Terrified and confused I kicked my way free of my glass womb. At first the cool air was an agony to my lungs. My muscles struggled to raise my misshapen head. Jedediah Orne rolled me on my back so his audience could gaze down upon me. My first sight was Vega at its zenith; its bluish white light filling my mind with knowledge and mysteries. Twelve of the nation's founding fathers stared down at me and I instantly knew their histories and potentials; I even knew how they might die.


The President of the United States in Congress Assembled, Richard Henry Lee, asked me a question. I wanted nothing more than to curse him but I was helpless. I had to answer in full.


The low drone of a helicopter startled me from my reminiscing, it sounded close. A spotlight swept over the train car, shafts of light insinuating between the gaps in the walls and the open doorway. I heard shouting voices and the barking of dogs.


I climbed up onto the train car’s roof and spied a dozen police officers and dogs moving in. The spotlight found me and an amplified voice ordered me to surrender. These were ordinary officers of the law and I wondered how much they had been warned to expect by the Agents of Project Pharos.


An animal sound stirring in my throat, I leapt down into the midst of them. The sight of me gave them pause but they kept coming, confident in their training and body armor. One leapt at me and I slapped him in the side of the face with all my strength. The snap of his neck sounded like gunfire.


A second one struck me across the knees with a baton, I caught him easily. My thumbs found his eye sockets, his head split apart like an overripe fruit. The high pitched keening of his voice panicked the dogs and slowed the other police officers’ approach.


The amplified voice from the helicopter cursed me, promising revenge. They released the dogs; the two beasts leapt as one, their teeth sinking into my forearms. Their eyes were small and frenzied with terror. I grabbed one of the dogs by its collar and tore it free not caring that a mouthful of my flesh came away with it.


I hurled the yelping animal at the helicopter. The spotlight shattered, the aircraft twisted in mid-air, fighting to stay aloft. The second dog let go and slunk away.


A high-powered rifle shot pierced my back, knocking the wind from me. I turned to see a woman, a Pharos Agent, methodically taking aim again. Another bullet caught me in the meat of my leg. I stumbled for her but the surviving police surrounded me.


They clubbed me, landing blow after blow. I fell to my knees clawing at my attackers. I knew if I could just get ahold of one of them I could take a hostage, I could bargain and delay.


Then Vega was at its zenith and my mind was on fire. I could only whimper as the rune carved into the underside of my skull reacted to the starlight. My mind is flooded with knowledge, everything I should know, everything I could know.


…allies that can become enemies… pragmatic motives… …enemies that might become allies… the Monarchs drawing ever closer to the world… …clever idealism… economic probabilities… …empty dogmas... …the dark gods still in hiding, waiting and playing at oracles. Does one of them see me now? …technological dreams… …cannibalistic nationalism… …emerging heroes and familiar scapegoats…


…and politics, always politics…


And then I knew how they had found me. I reached to the back of my skull, to the nest of scars and cysts and plucked out the tracking chip.


It took six of them to hold me down as I writhed, my mind boiling with stolen wisdom. The woman approached me, her rifle abandoned for a long bladed knife and in a moment I know her name and I knew what she had suffered what had been done to her. She hamstrung me with practiced efficiency.


The helicopter landed somewhere nearby. I tried to raise myself up with my arms and crawl away only to be brought back down again.


They manacled me with heavy chains, my arms and legs bound behind my back. A steel bar was jammed into my screaming mouth. I wanted to curse them, I wanted to tell them what they truly served and how little it meant.


Then a man with graying hair and a sour expression approached me, he was holding a syringe. Ridiculously over the din of the chaos he tried to speak to me of reassurances, promising me that it would all be all right. He even dared to call me Citizen Aslingan.


That name is a sick joke. A veritable slur. Do you know your Old English?


The hypodermic descended in a slow deliberate arc, burying itself in the corner of my eye, where an ordinary man might have a tear duct.


The drugs took hold and I slipped into fugue full of new memories and old dreams.


“Citizen Aslingan… all hail Citizen Aslingan… the Soul of a new nation…”


Of course you must understand now that I was unlike any other of my kind. The others had been built from known mystical and alchemical principals by nations at the height of their power.


The line began with giant Talos, made from bronze; he stood guard of the kingdom of Minos. The conquering Greeks brought Talos’ remains to wise Daedalus and he used what he discovered to create the nine clockwork muses, whose wisdom led a nation and whose beauty inspired a generation of artists. The Egyptians stole Daedalus’ notes and used them to create stoic Ptah, who would defend their empire for generations until he fled before the coming Romans, losing himself in the shadowy Husk Worlds. The world-conquering Romans had their own copy of what was now called The Talos Formulae and used it to birth Quirinus; so perfect in his features that his was frequently mistaken for a living man.


Quirinus’ fortunes would ebb and flow with those of the empire, some Caesars would take his council, some tried to have him killed, some took him in their beds. Mongol raiders captured him and studied him until they learned the secret of his creation. From that knowledge they created artificial concubines that served the emperors and Mandarins of China. The secret found its way to the wizards of that land and they used it to create the blasphemous Song of Tian-gou.


With the fall of Rome the secret of our creation was lost to the West. While it is true that Muslim scholars had copies of both The Song of Tian-gou and The Talos Formulae, there is no record of either ever being used. The same held true for Hebrew scholars.


It fell to Gerbert of Aurilliac to rediscover the secrets long lost. He created Meridiana from the purest bronze and last remaining sketch of the muse of hymns. Her wisdom guided him until he became Pope, then in an act of contrition he had her melted down in 1003. He died shortly afterwards.


Like a living thing the secret traveled to Britain where Gog and Magog were created to defend the city of London. By the time of the Renaissance each nation had its own avatar. In France there was a near perfect copy of Meridiana called Luxuria who never spoke but always taught. In Portugal winged Esibraeus sat at the side of kings. In Italy Demodocus spoke only in song but his advice was always correct.


By the year of my creation they all still lived but their faculties had begun to dwindle; Gog and Magog had become reclusive, Esibraeus had lost the ability to fly, Demodocus had gone blind. Did the fortunes of a nation dwindle with their avatar or did the avatar falter when a kingdom fell to disrepair?


The powers of this nation are all too aware of that question, which is why they never stopped trying to improve me, melioration upon melioration. Piece by piece the body of the old Pharaoh was stripped away and fine American flesh was put in its place.


This arm belonged to the assassin John Wilkes Booth. These legs came from an unnecessary amputation performed on a valiant soldier. Here and there are bits of slaves and madmen.


They have tried to make me handsome but my little excursions always leave such scars. They have tried to make me obedient with drugs, bribes and chains but they are always too careful. I am actually surprised they dared to put a tracking chip at the base of my neck.


When I awoke I found myself chained to a metal gurney, legs bound together arms outstretched.


How we Americans love our crucifixions!


A nest of machines clustered around me, measuring heart rate and brainwave activity. If you were to look at them you would see that they meet no human criterion. IVs and catheters pass fluids to and from me, bright lights shone in my eyes. My skull still rung with the roar of information the mystical circuit gave me. At that moment I was the most well informed being in the nation, perhaps the world. But even without that wisdom I would have been able to guess that I would not be able to escape this chamber easily. There were no visible windows, and a single air-lock like doorway.


The man that had called me by my old name was there and I could see now that his hair was more blonde than gray but that he carried himself like a man ten years his senior. I knew his name now just as I knew that he lead the Pharos Project as his father had before him.


And he knew that I could tell him how his father truly died. That I could tell him why there was a closed casket. He had only to ask.


He offered me a draught of water. I accepted. He took a damp cloth, held it far over my mouth and squeezed out a few drops. I wanted to ask him if he understood the symbolism of Project Pharos’ name.


He wanted to ask. He needed to ask. But he didn’t dare.


Everyone stopped what they doing at the hiss of the vault door opening. Two Pharos agents in dark suits, practically twins to the ones I had killed earlier in the day, walked into the room; a small, middle-aged man followed them. The agents of Project immediately began fawning over him, full of salutations, apologies and compliments. The President of the United States waves them off.


He wasn’t there to speak to them.


He was there to see me, but I could tell he’d rather be anywhere else. I disgusted him but he knew I would only truthfully answer the questions of the nation’s leader.


Like every other President in the last quarter century, he looked like a substitute pallbearer. His eyes were dull and collusive, his skin soft and pink. When he spoke his voice had an effected rural twang, “You stirred up a lot of trouble for us.”


“Mr. President.” I replied, “I serve at your pleasure."


“My pleasure would be that you stopped acting like a beast and started acting like a man. The trouble you’ve caused this administration… Witnesses have to be quieted down. Explanations created. You think that kind of stuff is easy?”


“I have my appetites. We all do.”


“When I read the reports about you – ”


“What do you want to know?” I cracked a smile, “Why did you have them pull me up out of that well?”


The President bristled, “Who do you think you’re
talking to?”


“I know who I’m taking to.” I said, “And I know what you need. Ask your questions and stop trying to scold me like I am one of your errant children.”


For a moment he just scowled at me, and then he pulled a sheaf of index cards and a pen from his suit pocket and asked his questions. His administration wanted advice on finances and diplomacy; how best to reverse the current recession and how best to navigate the current brewing conflicts simmering around the world. He wanted to know which of his political allies was plotting against him and which of his enemies he could trust. His last question was about his wife’s fidelity.


The questions have changed so little in over two centuries.


When it was over the President thanked me, but from the expression on his face I could tell that he immediately regretted it. He slipped the cards back into his pocket, I glimpsed the notes he had taken; his handwriting was scrawling and child-like.


“Is it back to the well for me now Mr. President?” I asked.


“No.” He shook his head, but his eyes were already on the door, “You’ll stay here. Special Agent Wight has some ideas about what to do with you.”


“Really?” I tried to watch him but the bonds and the drugs kept me from doing more than turning my head.


“Of course.” The President said, “There have been advances in science that even you would be amazed at. I'm sure you can be rehabilitated.”


I started laughing then, my voice mad and booming. The President flinched at the sound as Pharos Agents ushered him out the door. The gurney shook with my hysterics, the chains rattled. Special Agent Wight was ready with another of his syringes and injected an opiate directly into my IV tube.


The weeks became months, I could hear them as they performed fresh miracles upon me. Stem cells and skin grafts, bone marrow transplants and gene therapy; they re-sculpted me as though I were made of clay. They thought that if I ceased to look like a monster I would cease to be a monster.


Then all I had to do was wait for them to become trusting, to become complacent. This latest escape was the easiest of all.


If I am careful it will take them years to find me again, if ever. Perhaps even now I am reading the newspaper over your shoulder and as I decide whether or not to allow you to live I cannot help but chuckle at what has become of your nation now that its Presidents finally have to think for themselves.


The trailer for the CINEMATIC TITANIC episode 'Rattlers' is here!

I need more disposable income damnit.


1 comment:

PLAID STALLIONS has ruffles, ruffles and more ruffles!

BLACK HOLE REVIEWS talks about one of my favorite horror films MASQUE OF THE RED DEATH

Gorgeous, colourful, complex, bloody, Roger Corman adaption of Poe The Masque of the Red Death is a costumed ball held in a castle fortress for the rich landowners, while all around the villagers are dying of a mysterious plague. With a captive audience, Prince Prospero (Vincent Price) can indulge in a wild party and even a little black magic without anyone complaining. Spurning his beautiful wife (Hazel Court), he kidnaps and attempts to lure a young christian (Jane Asher) to defect and worship Satan... Roger Corman directed a series of the best ever adaptions of Edgar Allen Poe, while remaining true to his stringent budget guidelines. How he successfully managed to sell these movies to teenagers at the same time as the beach party films, I'm not sure. Poe's poems and short stories needed expert scriptwriters (such as Richard Matheson and Charles Beaumont) to remain true to the gothic sensibility while expanding the material to feature-length. The themes of plague, evil, class and religion make for a rich set of subtexts for a period horror film...


click here to read the rest

HORROR MOVIE A DAY talks about the intense weirdness that is THE BABY!

And trust me this movie is pretty darn weird.

...did I actually SEE a 20ish babysitter breastfeed the 30ish title character, or was my brain jumbling a bunch of stuff together?

I assure you, that scene did happen. And it wasn’t even the weirdest thing about the movie (the fact that the babysitter shows up at his birthday party later despite the fact that Baby’s family beats her senseless for “molesting” him might be, however), which tells an ostensibly straight story about a social worker who wants to rescue a mentally handicapped man from his abusive family. However the script by Abe Polsky (who also produced) seemingly goes out of its way to make this as insane as possible, tossing in incest, cattle prod abuse, an intense game of darts, Michael Pataki, a school full of disabled children (the movie’s ickiest moment, honestly), and a surprise ending in which we learn who the craziest person in the movie really is...

to read the rest of the review click here

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

THE COLD INSIDE (a serial novel) Chapter Thirteen part three

The Cold Inside

Chapter Thirteen

part three


Saturday November 12, 1994

Post game cleanup was almost over and Tristam stood in Greg’s room watching a pair of headlights back out the driveway. The rest of the Magnificent Seven had already left. “Warren’s Dad has a nice car.”

Greg hefted his milk crate of D&D books into the closet and closed the door. “Really? I can never tell. I’m not much of a car guy. How long before your Mom gets here?”


“Want some lemonade?” Greg walked in front of him to lower the blinds and close the drapes.


“How about some cookies?”

“God no, I couldn’t eat another cookie if my life depended on it.”

“Be right back.” Greg said.

Alone again, Tristam let his eyes slide over the walls of Greg’s room, they were as crowded with pictures as the rest of the house; some religious, some vacation, and one picture was of Greg and his two friends from years ago. The girl on Greg’s left was skinny with dark hair and a friendly smile. The boy on Greg’s right was tall for his age and had to stoop over to be in the picture, his hair was sandy blonde, he seemed to be looking somewhere else as the picture was being shot. It always made Tristam a little sad to look at that picture and to realize that one of those kids was dead now and the other one locked up. Tristram turned his attention to the computer that sat in the center of a sagging wooden desk with a printer off to the side. The Amiga was turned on, a flock of flying toasters flapped across the monitor’s screen. Books and papers were stacked everywhere.

Tristam paused at one of the papers, it was a letter, his eye caught by the strange little cartoons drawn in the margins- a crowded landscape of demonic shapes and crucifixions. He recognized the artwork; it had been all over the news for months.

It read “...the other prisoners make fun of me and try to do worse. I try to turn the other cheek but I have been forced to defend myself several times. I don’t think the guards or the doctors care, not really. Pray for me, pray for them. Does not the Bible say that even the captives of the mighty shall be taken away? Perhaps the Lord has placed me here for a special reason, perhaps like Joseph I will be aided by a kind jailer...”

“I get about a letter a week.” Greg set a glass of lemonade down on the desk.

Tristam blushed, “I’m sorry! I didn’t mean-”

Greg raised a hand, “No biggie, if it bothered me to have someone see them I wouldn’t have left them out in the open.”

“Oh, ok” Tristam took a swig of lemonade and glanced out the window, “Do you write him back?”

“When I have time.”

“I would think you would hate him,” Tristam’s eyes went back to the photograph of Greg with Jeff Hayes and Janice Tillman.

“Sometimes I do hate him.” He leaned on the desk, “But that’s not what Jesus wants us to do, he wants us to forgive our enemies.”

“I don’t believe in Jesus,” Tristam turned his attention back to the window. His mother was late picking him up; no big surprise there.

“I know. We’ve had this conversation a lot.” Greg adjusted his glasses, “Sometimes I think you protest too much. Maybe you’re just angry at God and that’s all right. You’re only human.”

“Take a look at the world, heck just take a look at our school. Where’s God’s love there? Its a fairy tale we tell ourselves to get through the night.”

“Considering what you’ve been through this year I can see how you would be bitter but remember it wasn’t God that caused it. It was you and all the other kids. You have to admit there isn’t a lot of ‘Love your neighbor’ going on among the student body.”

Oh yeah? What about Monique and Evan? Tristam thought and then regretted it.

“Getting back to Jeff. He’s scared and he’s alone in a mental institution for underage murderers,” Greg explained, “I like to think that if I can help him with what he’s going through at the Hogan Institute then maybe somehow Janice and all the others didn’t die for nothing. Does that make sense?”

“He’s alone because he killed his parents.”

“Everything happens for a reason Tristam, sometimes we can’t see why but if we submit ourselves to God’s will everything will come out right in the end.” Greg stared hard at him, “Do you want to pray with me?”

There was a flash of headlights and the beep of a horn. “That’s my Mom.” Tristam drained his lemonade and wiped his mouth on the sleeve of his coat, “I gotta go. Great game.”


“See you later.” He called as he headed for the door. He bounded down the steps and climbed into the car.

His mother gave him a sheepish look, “I was watching a movie on HBO. I hope you didn’t wait too long.”

“No.” he stared at Greg’s house as the car backed out the driveway. “You were just in time.”

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