Dec 31, 2014

NEW YEAR'S EVE


Dec 27, 2014

CHRISTMAS CAROL

“It is required of every man," the ghost returned, "that the spirit within him should walk abroad among his fellow-men, and travel far and wide; and, if that spirit goes not forth in life, it is condemned to do so after death.”

Dec 25, 2014

A VERY ED GEIN CHRISTMAS

In the wake of Ed Gein's murders, "Gein humor" began circulating around Plainfield, Wisconsin. Among them was this, dubbed "Ed Gein's Christmas." 

'Twas the night before Christmas, when all though the shed,
All creatures were stirring, even old Ed.

The bodies were hung from the rafters above,
While Eddie was searching for another new love.

He went to Wautoma for a Plainfield deal,
Looking for love and also a meal.

When what to his hungry eyes should appear,
But old Mary Hogan in her new red brassiere.

Her cheeks were like roses when kissed by the sun
And she let out a scream at the sight of Ed's gun.
 

Old Ed pulled the trigger and Mary fell dead,
He took his old axe and cut off her head.

He then took his hacksaw and cut her in two,
One half for hamburger, the other for stew.

And laying a hand aside of her heel,
Up to the rafter went his next meal.

He sprang to his truck, to the graveyard he flew,
The hours were short and much work he must do.

He looked for the grave where the fattest one laid,
And started digging with a shovel and spade.

He shoveled and shoveled and shoveled some more,
Till finally he reached the old coffin door.

He took out a crowbar and pried open the box,
He was not only clever but sly as a fox.

As he picked up the body and cut off her head,
He could tell by the smell that the old girl was dead.

He filled in the grave by the moonlight above,
And once more old Ed had found a new love. 




Dec 24, 2014

A VERY TWO GUYS, ONE QUIP CHRISTMAS: ELVES

A joint effort between The End of Summer and Exploitation Movie Review, “Two Guys, One Quip” is a new venture to honor the cheesiest, oddest, and most unheralded crop of films we can stand. Some films can be tackled solo and some cannot. Some films are so excruciatingly unusual that multiple parties are needed to catch every single solitary weirdity. "Two Guys, One Quip" is a free-for-all, back-and-forth, "I'm just gonna say whatever" approach to double-teaming an easy target in the unsexiest way possible. Below you will find nothing close to actual, legitimate film discussion, but instead sarcastic commentary and douche-bag superiority flying fast and furious. Profanity will be immense, constant, and unyielding. No on-screen target is safe. No incompetence will pass by unmocked. And no punches will be at all pulled. Some films deserve it. This is one of them.



Exploitation Movie Review (EMR): Merry Christmas, Quippers! (I’m gonna call you all Quippers from now on, you fucking disgusting label whores.) This month’s offering is a dreadful little piece of shit which hilariously brief research tells me was filmed, scored, and released. The only thing you need to know is that this fucking turd clocks in at just over an hour and a half while Corman’s The Fall of the House of Usher clocks in only at an hour and a quarter. But hey, if there were any justice in the world, O.J. wouldn’t be sitting in jail right now.

This film starts as it means to go on: by looking and sounding like an episode of “Are You Afraid of the Dark?” - with added witchcraft, woman-beating and Nazi paraphernalia, but heavily reduced levels of Gary.

The End of Summer (TEOS): Try as hard as you want to be ominous and foreboding, you stupid movie, but everything you establish in your pretty lame opening credit sequence is completely overcome by the word ELVES popping up on screen, and in a font that I’m pretty sure is Times New Roman.

Speaking of laughing at incompetence:


TEOS: C’mon...NO ONE caught that?

Elves opens with a gaggle of teen girls hauling ass out to the middle of the woods where they’re about to spread a blanket, bitch about Christmas, and perhaps do some light kissing. Man, have these girls been reading my dream journal?

EMR: Haha, these crazy bitches. I was going to mention that this hanging-out-in-the-woods-and-hating-on-Christmas deal doesn’t seem like a healthy or regular activity for teenage girls, but then I got a look at the lead girl, Kirsten (pronounced Keehr-stin), and she looks like Bibi Besch and the mom from Harry & The Hendersons used a semen applicator shaped like Bret Michaels’ fist to smash dumpster jizz into each other out of spite. Man, she looks fucking old. I’m glad I didn’t start getting laid until the early 2000s when 15-year-old girls at least LOOKED like 13-year-old-girls.

TEOS: Speaking of sexy things, I admit: the minute these three teenage girls knelt down and spread out a blanket, I thought sex was about to happen. Has pornography poisoned my mind, or has my lack of a sex life turned me into a pervert?

You decide.
 

Read the rest.

Dec 23, 2014

FROST


"For tho' from out our bourne of Time and Place 
The flood may bear me far, 
I hope to see my Pilot face to face 
When I have crost the bar."

Dec 20, 2014

WATCHING

I was talking to a gal once and she related a 'creepy' story that happened to her. When she was a young teen, she was very ill. She had been to the doctor and was prescribed bed-rest until her fever came down and her flu-like symptoms passed.

While laying on the family couch, her mom and dad would sit in the nearby easy chair and watch TV. At times they would leave the room and get her water, meds, soup, etc.

She kept noticing a painting on the wall, near the couch, of a woman holding a basket of fruit.

It seemed to be 'watching' the people coming in/leaving the room. Now, she was running a fever, and she knew this must be her imagination, and kept it to herself.

As her dad left the room, she could swear the painting followed him with its eyes. Fever or not, she was getting scared. So, she looked to see if she could see her mom or dad returning to the room. She couldn't see anyone nearby.

Until she turned her head back to the picture.

The woman turned her head directly toward her, made eye contact, and tossed down the basket of fruit. From behind the woman's back, she produced a knife and began climbing OUT of the picture frame with a look of blood-hate in her eyes.

At this point, her screams of panic caused her dad to come rushing back. The painting turned toward the sound of the dad's rushing feet, made eye contact with the girl, and climbed back up in to the frame, with one last look that said, "I'll finish this next time..."

She would never let her parents leave her in that room alone again.

I was told, "In the right light, paintings will talk to each other." I thought this was BS until, as a teen, I began trying to crack an eye open in the early morning to see if I could verify the myth. I kept doing this until I began to notice a small movement. And then one would seem to be whispering, barely moving its lips. I was transfixed.

Until I lip-read the words: "I think he is watching us."
Story source.

Dec 17, 2014

FOOTSTEPS

When I was in college, I used to ride the bus to my grandmother's house once in awhile and stay the weekend. It was nice for me to get a chance to sit and talk to her, and it also gave me an opportunity to help her out with odd jobs around the house like changing light bulbs, putting screens in the windows, etc.

She lived (and still does) alone with no pets in a two story bungalow-style house. I always slept in the same place-upstairs and in the bedroom all the way at the end of the hallway. Not sure why that was always my spot, since she has two other empty bedrooms, but that's the one I always used. The bedroom is T-shaped, with the head of the bed at the top center of the "T" facing the "leg". The door to the room is positioned in the right side of the top of the "T" if you're laying in bed on your back.

Anyway, I had been up late watching TV, long after my grandma was asleep in her room. I was getting sleepy at around 2AM and decided to call it a night. I climbed the stairs, walked down the hallway, and covered up in bed. I lay awake for longer than I expected to, but was finally just starting to doze when I heard it.

Something starting tapping on the carpeted floor at the opposite end of the room. It literally sounded like someone had crouched down and was rapidly and rhythmically drumming their hand on the floor. I immediately froze, my body tensing up, listening to what my logical mind kept trying to insist was either my imagination, or was coming from somewhere outside the room. It wasn't. The house was quiet, with the exception of that continual tapping coming from several feet past the foot of my bed.

The room was far too dark to see anything, but I was too afraid to try and get out of bed and make it to the light switch. Finally the tapping stopped, and I lay there still not moving, trying to keep my rapid breathing quiet, my heart pounding in my throat. Then it really got bad.

A few seconds after the tapping stopped, I heard the distinct sound of light footsteps approaching the bed. The steps came straight to the foot of the bed, and then diverted and came around the side of the bed and stopped RIGHT BY MY HEAD! At this point, I was terrified at a level I've not experienced before or since. Whatever was standing there by the side of my bed was between me and the door and lightswitch. I remained frozen, unsure of what to do, and unsure if I'd be able to move if I wanted to. There was silence for about 30 seconds, during which I got the impression that something was studying me intently. Then the footsteps started up again, slowly and unhurriedly walking back toward the foot of the bed, around the foot, and up the other side. Again, once they reached the head of the bed, they stopped. Silence again for around 30 seconds, and then the light, methodical footsteps moved back to the far side of the room, and stopped.

I lay there still terrified for a long, long time. Looking back, I wonder why I never got up and turned the light on. Eventually, I somehow managed to drift off into an uneasy sleep, and didn't have any further incidents for the rest of the night.

Still to this day have no clue what that was all about, but I've stayed in that room many times since, and never had any problems.

Story source.

Dec 15, 2014

CRYPT KEEPER

While visiting the Green-Wood Cemetery in Brooklyn, NY today, I was peeking into a crypt and trying to see in. It was too dark to see anything.

The only opening was this cross in the door so I tried using the camera flash to light up the inside. The flash went off but it didn’t seem to do anything but bounce off the stone. Then when I got home I uploaded the photo and saw this smoke-like image inside the tomb.

I don’t know whose tomb it is, I didn’t even think to look when I was there. I will have to go back and see if I can find it. This cemetery is massive. That is How I saw the image as well but others see it this was, also a female but more of a 3/4 view of a face, if you take the left eye of the skeletal face, that would be the only (right) eye and to the left of that is the shape of a nose. Below this the mouth, I don’t know if that makes sense but I am not sure how else to explain it.

Story and image source.

Dec 14, 2014

FINAL PLUNGE

Buffalo Courier Press photographer I. Russell Sorgi did a little impromptu ambulance chasing on his way back from another job. He wound up snapping photos of a woman standing on a ledge at the Geneese Hotel, as she waved goodbye and started her fall, he reloaded the camera in haste and caught the last second of her life, frozen in time 15 feet above the cold sidewalk below. Her name was Mary Miller.

The photo was used in a psychological study and it was found that 96% of the people given the photo didn’t even notice her on first examination of the shot.

Dec 13, 2014

ARE YOU AFRAID OF THE DARK? 1X11: THE TALE OF THE DARK MUSIC

If you were a budding horror misanthrope in your early teens during the ‘90s, then you not only remember, but cherish, this long-running Nickelodeon series about a group of variously ethnic kids meeting in the woods at night to trade spooky tales. Perhaps you remember President Gary's opening remarks during the first episode: "We're called The Midnight Society. Separately, we're very different...but one thing draws us together: the dark! Each week, we gather around this fire to share our fears and our strange and scary tales." The stories were creepy, corny, fantastic, or pretty stupid, but we all remember that nervous knot in our stomachs beginning to tighten as the legitimately eerie opening title sequence began (which includes that awful clown-doll from which I used to avert my eyes). You didn’t know if the groundwork for nightmares was being laid, but you sat, rapt, waiting to see.  So grab your weird bag of magic dust and toss it in the fire. It’s time to see if you’re still afraid of the dark.



The Tale Submitted For Approval: 

"The Tale of the Dark Music"

The Submitter: Eric

The Current Midnight Society Administration: Gary (President, Glasses); David (Vice-President, Administrator of the Useless); Kiki (Secretary of War/Ass-Kicker, Name-Taker); Eric (Director of the Office of Management and Budget/Minister of Looking Smarmy); Betty Ann (Ambassador to the United Nations/Gary’s Unspoken Mistress); Kristen (Trade Representative/Socialite); Frank (Intern/Socialite).


The Jist

Have you met Andy Carr? He's pretty sad because he's a child-of-divorce who wears pink shirts. Plus he looks like Vern Tessio from Stand by Me with all the fat sucked out of him, so it's weird. He's recently moved into a new house, which his mother inherited from a dead uncle she barely knew (until the time comes for the necessary exposition, that is), but the family still has money problems, so Andy tries to help out with bills by delivering papers, as is rite of passage for every boy.

While tossing papers one day, Andy meets his new neighbor, Koda, who looks like David St. Hubbins from This is Spinal Tap, but somehow even less bright, and who also has his own terrible rock'n'roll theme song that shreds at his every appearance. The two engage in confrontation which ends with Andy sprawled across the ground on his back while Koda stands above him and looks like a big-game hunter from a cartoon - he might as well have his hands on his hips. He's basically welcomed Andy to the neighborhood, but in the way bullies do it.

"Please don't hurt me anymore, Mr. Springsteen."


Down in the basement of his new house, Andy sees an old radio, which is connected to the power of the kitchen wall switch upstairs. After flipping on the radio, a wooden door in the basement swings open and a voice booms from the darkness, telling him to "come on in."

Andy shits every pair of pants he's ever owned and runs up the stairs screaming for his mother, who for some reason believes that there is a monster in that dark room and approaches it with a hockey stick to brain it, all while he continues screaming about his encounter.

It said, 'Come on in so I can suck your blood!' or something!" Andy totally fucking lies. Man, what a liar!

She opens the door to reveal it's nothing more than an old root cellar, and most importantly, it's monster-free. She says the "monster" was likely nothing more than rats (twice), leaky pipes, or the old radio - all in succession. Mom tsk-tsks and leaves while his bratty little sister likely says something asshole.

Andy thinks having a dark basement room that talks to him is pretty far-out, so he casually begins asking his mother about his Uncle Niles, as well as the history of the house. He learns from his mother that his uncle was a weirdo outcast whom none of the neighbors liked and who was apparently pretty well-off, financially, even though he didn't have a job. She also casually mentions that he was also found dead...in the house...in the BASEMENT. THIS IS IMPORTANT INFORMATION TO HAVE.

Later, Andy's down in the basement again when that old wooden door swings open again. Out of it comes the scariest fucking thing anyone has ever seen:

"♫ It's all about my face, 'bout my face, 'bout my--"


Andy, who inexplicably still contains shit within him after his previous brush with the door, screams his mouth off and tears ass out of there, dropping even more shit into his Lees. One would think that'd be enough to not only avoid going into the basement ever again, but to also commit suicide ASAP.

Get this, though: motherfucker goes back into the basement!

What?!

What is this?!

Andy! Did you somehow miss the Suzanne Somers monster that came out of the dark toward you? It had DOLL HANDS AND A DOLL FACE.

Kids!

Well, that dreaded door swings open again and this time there's an entire carnival inside the room, complete with balloons, roller-coaster, terror, and popcorn cart. Some type of carnival showman tries to tempt Andy into coming inside the room, and it kinda seems to be working, as Andy wants all over that carnival, but then the showman really blows it by turning into a screaming skeleton.

After being near-raped by this carnival skeleton, Andy realizes that music is the trigger which calls forth the root cellar of evil. Instead of doing anything about it, he instead flees on his bike and directly into Koda's fist of fury. Because we have to REALLY develop dislike for Koda, he picks up Andy's bike and throws it under the wheels of a dump truck, forever rendering Andy a non-wheeled pedestrian.

"I'm gonna beat on you for the rest of your life," Koda assures Andy, and us all.

Viewing audience, Andy's had enough. He goes home, turns his basement into a murder trap, and then lures Koda there with the aid of a brick and a bit of the ol' smart-assin'. It works like a charm, and Koda chases Andy down into the basement through a bulkhead door. After promptly locking every potential exit, Andy flips on the radio from the switch in the kitchen and blasts some hardcore rock music all over the basement. Koda screams all the fucking Poison lyrics out of his brain and is eaten by the monster room.

The room thanks Andy for the meal and gives him a new bike, even offering him all kinds of additional treats, should he continue to feed the room one asshole after another.

And you just know Andy is totally into this idea, because he makes this face:

"Blowpops for dinner."

The Reaction

My reaction? Here's my reaction: Andy fucking MURDERS a child at the end of this episode - premeditated, root-cellar-terror, rock'n'roll murder - and I LOVE IT. So far the scariest thing "Dark" has had to offer was a cigar-chomping clown who sounded like Pumba from The Lion King, and that was way back in the beginning of the season. All these episodes later, we've achieved child murder. And not only that, it's pretty much implied Andy's going to murder his sister, too. Yes! Take that, everyone!

God, if I had a murder room that left no trace evidence, I'd use it ALL. THE. TIME. In you go, Shia Labeouf!

Also, I like to think that Midnight Society's Eric read my previous episode recap ("The Tale of Jake and the Leprechaun"), during which he was that night's storyteller, and was so rattled by my extreme hatred for both his episode and himself in general, that he found a way to travel back in time, bump Betty Ann's dumb story about a haunted roller-rink (probably) out of the way, and butt in line so he could make it up to me with this episode's twenty-one minutes of madness.

Is It Scary?

That weird woman doll with creaky limbs is. Oh, and Koda's hair. Laugh!

Is It Corny?

More like scorny! Which is another way to say scary when you're not really putting a lot of effort into your jokes!

Is It Stupid?

To describe this episode out loud to someone makes it sound stupid, but no, it's not stupid when you watch it. It's actually kind of fucked up.

How Bad Is The Acting?

Pretty bad. TO THE BONE.

Does The Kid Deserve His Terror?

Of course he does.

Look:

Andy goes into basement, door opens, voice in darkness tells him "come in."

Andy goes back into that basement, where a door opens, a human-sized fucking creep-doll comes out of the dark and tells him to play with her.

Andy goes back into that basement, where a door opens and an entire fucking carnival, somehow, is IN that room, and a showman turns into a skeleton and grabs his wrist.

Fool Andy once, shame on you; fool Andy twice, shame on him; fool Andy three times, die from the mysterious monster room.

Unless you're asking if Koda deserves his terror. Well...of course he does. Did you not see his hair? Plus, he was kinda mean.

A romance so forbidden, it was for-boned-en.


Why Does That One Kid Look Familiar?

Graham Selkirk, as Andy, has been in precisely one thing. Try to guess what! As a bonus, I'll tell you that Leif Anderson, who plays Dickhead the Bully, has actually been in some pretty high profile films. And he played such roles as: "Sound Man," "Policeman," and "Chevy Owner."

How Canadian Does Everyone Sound?

The constant guitar shreds that complement every appearance of Koda is so fucking rock'n'roll American that I can't even hear all the non-American stuff. Hang ten, dudes!

An Eric Douchebag-Ism

Eric gets things going right away by forgetting to wait for Frank to walk him to the meeting spot because Frank's afraid of the dark, for which Eric openly mocks him using the douchebag baby voice. Why wasn't Eric killed by Jeffrey Dahmer? He was Canadian, too, wasn't he?

Final Thoughts

At the end of the episode, Frank breaks the fourth wall, and normally I'd call him out on doing this because he's neither Jonathan Demme nor Spike Lee, but I'm gonna just let it go.

I'm...really scared of Frank.

Welcome to my nightmare.



On the Official Gary Creeper-Shot Rating Scale...



I Award "The Tale of the Dark Music..."

  

  

Four Gary Creeper Shots

  

I declare this meeting of the Midnight Society closed. (Splash sound.)

Dec 6, 2014

CHAR MAN

A well-known urban legend in California comes from the Ojai Valley in Camp Comfort County Park. They say the spirit of a man burnt in a fire will emerge from the forest and attack cars and hikers. He is called Char-Man because the majority of his face and body could be described as “extra-crispy.”

There are several versions of Char-Man’s origin, but they all begin with a wildfire that occurred in the park in 1948. The main story goes that a father and son were caught in the blaze and the older man was killed. But the son survived, and when a rescue team arrived they found that he had strung up his father and pulled off his skin. He then disappeared into the woods. Another story makes the victims a husband and wife, claiming that the man went mad as he lay trapped and injured in the fire, unable to aid his wife, who was screaming for his help.

Either way, it is said that if you drive onto a bridge located in the park and get out of your car, Char-Man will come. The horribly burned man will run at you and attack, trying to tear off your skin—perhaps to take as his own.

Story source.

Dec 4, 2014

THE SEA SERPENT

Phosphorescent Monster Ate Bananas

“March 13. At 8 p.m., Thursday, 22° 06′ north, longitude 74° 21′ west. One half mile off starboard bow sighted strange marine monster. It approached and followed ship all night. Friday at 9 a.m. monster crossed our bows. Passengers in a panic. Reduced speed to five knots”

– Extract from the log of the
Admiral Farragut
Sitting in the doorway of his cabin, collarless and in his shirt sleeves, Captain Mader of the fruit steamer Admiral Farragut, which arrived this week from Port Antonio [Jamaica], told the story:
“We picked the sea serpent up — or rather the monster picked us up — late Thursday night,” said he. “I was on the bridge when one of the passengers, an elderly man, rushed up and excitedly called my attention to a phosphorescent light several miles astern. At first I thought it was a new submarine boat. As it came nearer we played the searchlight on it and could see that it was some strange sea monster.“It seemed about 120 feet long and threshed its way through the rough sea at a fearful speed. All night long it followed the vessel and during that time most of the passengers and crew remained on deck. The phosphorescent glow of the monster lighted up the sea within a radius of fifty feet.

“On Friday morning about breakfast time the serpent swam within thirty feet of the starboard side. The creature resembled a huge boa constrictor, with the exception that its body was green. From its sides streamed seaweed and other marine growth.

“The monster raised its head several feet above the water. It had huge eyes projecting from the top of its head and two green horns that projected upward nearly five feet. The horns resembled large antennae and moved about continuously.

“Three times the serpent crossed our bows and fearing to run it down, I signalled the engineer to reduce speed to five knots an hour.

“Some of the persons on board thought the monster was hungry and we threw over several sacks of peanuts and a few bunches of bananas. When we arrived off Cape Hatteras late Friday the monster circled around and swam south….”
 - Trenton Evening Times, Trenton New Jersey
18 March 1908

Source.

Dec 1, 2014

DANGERFIELD NEWBY

During the John Brown raid, the first raider killed was an African-American  man by the name of Dangerfield Newby. Dangerfield had been freed by his white father, but he had a wife and seven children held in slavery in Warrenton, Virginia. His wife’s master had told him that for the sum of $1,500 he could buy his wife and his youngest baby, who had just started to crawl. Dangerfield earned that amount of money and went back to Warrenton to purchase his wife and baby, only to have his wife’s master raise the price. The free black man then joined John Brown in the hope of freeing not only his wife and youngest baby, but his entire family.

There were a lot of guns in Harper's Ferry, since they were made in the town and stored in the 22 building armory complex near the train tracks. There was little ammunition for the guns, however, and townspeople would fire anything they could find for their guns. One man was shooting 6 inch spikes from his powder-loaded gun.

When John Brown raided the town in October of 1859, it was one of those spikes that hit the throat of Dangerfield Newby. He was killed instantly.

The people of Harper's Ferry, frustrated and angered by John Brown and his raiders, took the body of Dangerfield Newby and stabbed it repeatedly with their rusty knives. They left the mutilated body in the alley to be eaten by the hungry hogs.

Some night, if you are walking down Hog Alley and see a man dressed in baggy trousers and an old slouched hat with a terrible scar across his throat, you will know you have met Dangerfield Newby. He is still roaming our streets, trying to free his family.


Source.