It was around 8am on Friday, July 26th when Russ Wrangler and I began our journey to the Fright Night Film Fest in Louisville, Kentucky. This annual event (merged in with the Fandomfest Comic & Toy Expo) offers big names in the genre world…be it horror, sci-fi, or comic books.
2013 proved to be no exception with the convention boasting such notable guests as William Shatner, Gillian Anderson, Gene Simmons, and Stan Lee along with a slew of others farther down the celebrity food chain.
Well, it was bound to happen…
Since rising up from their graves, zombies have stumbled their way into just about every facet of our popular culture. This is evident through their slow, yet steady take-over of both the small screen (via the success of AMC’s The Walking Dead) as well as fresh new films (independent and main stream) spreading like a contagion all around the world each year. These movies highlight zombies both slow-moving & fast; some offering variations of zombie lore and differing explanations (if any at all) as to why the dead would suddenly return to feast on the living. Some of these movies have even gravitated from horror into comedy (affectionately referred to as a “zomedy” in some circles) with great success e.g. SHAUN OF THE DEAD & ZOMBIELAND. We now have yet another genre for zombies to infest…teen romance! And as we’ve seen with those damn TWILIGHT films, monsters and romance (though leaving a bad taste in most horror fan’s mouths) does translate well at the Box Office.
It was a beautiful sunny day in Chicago when I arrived at DePaul University to see a Q&A session with national horror host and broadcaster, Rich Koz/Svengoolie! While I’ve seen him at various appearances this would mark the first time I would catch him without his familiar make-up and, rather than greet fans, get to see him discuss his vast career.
When I was five, I was drawn in by the “Dark Shadows” TV show. Initially it might of been because there was a child on the show (David Collins) who reminded me of Bill Mumy from one of my other favorite programs, “Lost in Space.” Whatever it was that drew me in, I was completely fascinated by Barnabas Collins along with the overall weirdness of the show that would ultimately stay with me my entire life.
Let me start by saying that I absolutely hate remakes. Anyone that has followed me on here knows that and my reasoning is simple…nine out of ten times they suck! The fact that so many of the movies coming out today are sequels or remakes really shows the state of Hollywood! They have literally run out of ideas (and I am sure it is a lot cheaper to hire someone to re-write something that worked in the 80’s then to hire someone with an original thought in their head).
It’s taken me a while to build up the strength to do it, but I have finally allowed my FANGORIA subscription to expire. I tend to be a loyal kind of a guy, often to a fault, and my relationship with this magazine was clearly becoming dysfunctional.
Back in the 1980’s it was edgy and one of the few periodicals unafraid to show a gore fan, like myself, the “good stuff.” Not merely content with graphic photographs, the magazine often had pull-out posters worthy of their own “NC-17” ratings. When placed on your wall, they were guaranteed to not only startle any adults that wandered into your teen-aged sanctuary but also help secure your status as a bad-ass among your peers.