The purpose of R.eaders I.mbibing P.eril VII is to enjoy books and movies/television that could be classified (by you) as: Mystery. Suspense. Thriller. Dark Fantasy. Gothic. Horror. Supernatural. Or anything sufficiently moody that shares a kinship with the above.
Between FrightFall Readathon and time in Nebraska with family, it’s been a few weeks since I’ve done a short story and TV/movies round-up post. Also, it’s October and this post is a part of Blogger Dressed in Blood!
I have two short stories *and* several poems to share.
The first short story is “Snicker-Snack” by A. D. Bloom. This is a sci-fi/horror story set in a future with bio-technology advanced enough grow semi-sentient living toys. In revolutionary hands, this technology has been used to create gargantuan Godzilla-like monsters that ravaged the land. A hunted teddy bear with razor-sharp claws, Teddy Da seeks home, using the only clue he has about his origins: his tag, StitchLife – Made in Tokyo. Bloom packs a lot of world and history into this short story. Not surprisingly, Bloom has written other novellas in the same world. This story is available to read online at The Chiaroscuro.
Second, “Harpy” by Chelsea Quinn Yarbro. This story is from a thin little volume I picked off my mom’s bookshelves. Saint-Germain: Memoirs is an anthology of short stories involving Yarbro’s vampire protagonist Le Comte de Saint-Germain. This story was quick, almost vignette, set in ancient Greece. It’s was light on the vampire aspects and lighter on historical elements than most of Yarbro’s stories, but full of iconic Saint-Germain-isms.
Horror poetry? Sure, why not? Apex magazine has a trio of spooky verses in this month’s issue. Two of the poems are by Rachael Swirsky, one of my favorite short story writers. The third is by Liz Argall and features one of my favorite and “mosters,” the golem. “Casanova Clay is the loneliest Golem in the world,” her poem begins. How can you resist that? Pop over to Apex and enjoy!
Dark Shadows (2012) – When the first trailer for the Dark Shadows movie appeared online, my friend Tania messaged me on Facebook. “You like this show, right? What do you think of the trailer?” True, I was a somewhat a fan of the show, through my mother’s fandom. I watched the short-lived 1991 reboot of it with her. It wasn’t bad. I had mixed feelings about Johnny Depp and Tim Burton being involved in the movie version of it. I like both Burton & Depp and most of their collaborations. But, especially together, they have a certain style. Did that style fit a 1960’s supernatural soap opera? The trailer didn’t inspire confidence. It seemed too cheesy. I held out hope that maybe it would still be funny, kind of like the Starsky & Hutch movie.
The reality is: Dark Shadows is kind of cheesy. When I wrote “1960’s supernatural soap opera,” I could almost smell the cheddar. But it’s also earnest about itself. There’s no winking at the camera. Not in the 1966 series, the 1991 series, or the Tim Burton 2012 movie. Taken out of context, of course, the scenes in the movie trailer look worse then Velveeta slices. Within the movie, where everyone is taking the most absurd circumstances seriously, it works. That’s not to say that there aren’t funny parts in the movie. They’re just internally funny. You’re never laughing directly at this movie.
Best part? Michelle Pfeiffer is pretty kick ass as Elizabeth Collins Stoddard.
Fright Night (2011) – This was another remake that I was just not sure about. I like the original well enough, though I’m not a huge fan. Colin Farrell is an interesting actor and David Tennant as a Chris Angel clone is…uh…disconcerting. Not a bad movie, but Charley (our hero, played by Anton Yelchin) is kind of a putz and Colin Farrell isn’t quite menacing enough. Tennant does do a good turn as Peter Vincent, and the climax of the film does include a plan that I’m not sure I’ve seen in a vampire movie previously.
Best part? The relationship between Peter Vincent and his assistant Ginger.