I’ve attended the Chicago Comic & Entertainment Expo (C2E2) for the last four years and each time it rolls around I get more and more excited about it. The success of the Marvel films reignited my love of comic books and inspired me to dig out that old collection of mine; thirteen long boxes featuring the ‘70s and ‘80s exploits of Spider-Man, The Uncanny X-Men, The Mighty Avengers, and so on. This year I attended the event with my friend, Elizabeth Ocon, along with my thirteen year old daughter, Jade. I think it was Jade’s excitement that caused me to anticipate this event as I did back when I was in my teens and attending Chicago’s Comic Con (as that event was called back in the day).
The Daves would like to once again welcome guest blogger Brandon Engel to this site, expressing his opinions on the best monster movies of the 1980’s!
An argument can be made the 1980s was the true golden age of the monster movie — a time when no theme was deemed too ridiculous and just about any inanimate object could become consumed by evil. Here are some of the “best” monster movies from the decade that gave us Pac-Man and Madonna:
On Saturday April 4th, we arrived back in Chicago (after doing TWO zoos; Louisville and Indianapolis) and ate lasagna at my place before relaxing on this final night of our vacation. We hunkered down for the night and watched two movies together; the old sci-fi classic, It Came from Outer Space, and a new movie David had gotten on Blu-ray called Digging up the Marrow. Though we’d watched several movies during our trip on DVD, including Wolfcop (which was okay), Love in the Time of Monsters (which was also okay), What we do in the Shadows (which was really funny), Animal (which we liked), Dark Haul (which was bad) and Muck (which was even WORSE) we inadvertently saved the best for last!
One of the things that amazes me is how certain stores continue to thrive whereas others selling the very same thing fail. A magic/novelty store is very specialized and if you don’t have the clientele, this type of business is doomed to go out of business. Thankfully, these stores that have succeeded have found that capitalizing on things like holidays helps keep the business going year round. Though they may have started out selling only magic and novelties, things like Halloween masks and costumes are now what helps make the business thrive.
This was very evident at Caufield’s Novelties. One room contained both the magic tricks and novelties (as well as lighting equipment). Three rooms were devoted to Halloween costumes, masks and props. Being a fan of Halloween this is not a bad thing at all. With stores like SPIRIT dominating the Halloween business in October, it is nice to see a mom and pop store like Caufield’s carrying so much more, and of better quality, than anything that SPIRIT ever carries.
While on our 2015 Terror Dave road trip, we visited many things and had many discussions. On April 3rd we headed to one of the world’s largest bats in Louisville, KY (and I am not talking about the 120 foot baseball bat that stands outside of the Louisville Slugger Museum). Those that know us are aware of the fact that sports rate very low on our list of priorities so that when the Daves go to see the world’s largest bat, you can bet it is either something zoological or something scary.
On the morning of Thursday April 2nd we bid Chattanooga a fond goodbye before heading out towards Tennessee’s Smokey Mountains. The journey was highlighted by numerous forests, hills, and rivers which became even more scenic once the famed mountains appeared in the distance. It was a cloudy day with some fog which made them every bit as “smokey” looking as their name implies. Everything we saw that morning was picturesque until we entered the town of Pigeon Forge and it seemed as if we’d crash landed on another planet!
While we were dining with Dr. Gangrene in Nashville, we asked him if he knew of any cool places to visit in Chattanooga. “Well,” he said. “A friend of mine told me about a place called Aretha Frankenstein’s. I hear they’ve got great food and atmosphere.”
He’d had us with the word “Frankenstein.”