Wednesday, April 27, 2011

The Most Badass Thing You'll See All Week!

Holy hell this is awesome, and i've never even played Call of Duty. Many of you have probably seen this by now but if not, you ABSOLUTELY MUST check out the just released trailer for a new Call of Duty : Black Ops map called 'Escalation', which is going to be available for download on May 3rd. The add on stars the voices and likenesses of Robert Englund, Michael Rooker, Danny Trejo, Sarah Michelle Gellar and George Romero (as a motherfuckin' zombie!) and the trailer is pitched as a faux grindhouse movie titled Call of the Dead. The action you are about to see is sure to blow your goddamn mind!



Guess I better start getting into Call of Duty, eh?

A Little Something To Look Forward To This Summer ...

I generally prefer to refrain from talking about things like this until they happen but I also prefer to not keep you folks out of the loop in terms of what's going on in my life, so I just can't resist. While there is always a possibility that things could somehow not work out, the plan is for my first EVER magazine article to be published in Mad Monster Magazine's third issue, coming out early this Summer. I'm not at liberty to discuss any ideas on what the content is about but I will say that it's an article idea I came up with and it will be perfect Summer reading material. I am honestly as excited as I am stressed about this, as it's out of my comfort zone and something i've never done before, but I know it's all going to be worth it in the end when I see something I wrote published in a magazine, a brand new magazine i'm a big fan of no less. As stressful and self doubt filled as I am in putting something out there in the horror journalism world, outside of my comfy and cozy little blog, I am having a blast so far whipping this article up and I hope you all have as much of a blast reading it once it drops. I have a feeling you will!

So please bear with me if I don't update around here as often as usual for the next week or so. This article is eating up a serious chunk of my writing time and I don't see myself being able to put the focus 100% back on blogging until it's done and sent off to the people in charge of the magazine, which I don't want to do until i'm totally happy with every word in it. In the meantime, subscribe to Mad Monster and i'll give you more details when I can!

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Monday, April 25, 2011

Mad Monster Magazine : There's a New Kid on the Rack

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Though the internet has lessened the need for traditional magazines, there is still nothing quite like flipping through a quality horror mag, be it the old dog (Fangoria) or the newer blood (the much more enjoyable Rue Morgue & HorrorHound). That being said, the market is admittedly a bit flooded when it comes to horror magazines, with still several others rounding out the pack, leaving little to no room for any kickstarts to make a name for themselves (much like in the horror blogosphere that I call home). It is for this reason that I am incredibly impressed to say that there is a new dog swingin' around in the park, one that looks to the past to offer a little bit something different to those who still crave their horror in print. It's called Mad Monster and though only one issue has been sent to the printer thus far, I feel pretty confident putting my stamp of approval all over this baby. If ya ask me, Mad Monster's future is so bright it oughta wear shades.

Again, much like with blogging these days, you really gotta do something different to stand out. Regurgitating news and content from the horror sites you dig just isn't gonna bring in the readers or impress anyone and the same goes for horror in print. I make this comparison because Mad Monster reads very much like a really fun and exciting horror blog, chock full of both entertainment and information. When reading a horror magazine or blog, you want to be both entertained and informed, reminded of why you love some of your favorite horror movies and introduced to other lesser known movies you perhaps had never heard of before. After reading Issue #1 of Mad Monster cover to cover, all of these criteria were more than met for me.

Rather than focusing on news or talking about brand new movies we've already read other outlets talk about, Mad Monster is more than happy sticking to the oodles of classic genre films history has already presented to us, shining the spotlight both on the founding fathers of the past who made the genre what it is today as well as on the more modern works that have come in their wake. It's truly a love note to the genre as a whole, as well as to the classic monster mags that have fallen by the wayside in recent times. What's old is new again and Mad Monster is a totally refreshing addition to the magazine rack, filling the gap between the mags that focus on the past and the ones that focus more on the present, and it's just waiting to be eaten up by hordes of hungry horror fans.

So what is it about Mad Monster that makes it so unique and awesome? Here are a couple of my favorite elements of the issue I currently hold in my hands ...



- Within the magazine itself are several pages that can be cut up, glued together and turned into a mini replica of the famous Bates house on the hill from Psycho. Watch the above video to see just how awesome this thing can turn out if done right. What other magazine serves a purpose like that even after you're done reading the whole thing?

- On both the right and lefthand corners of each page, there are small images that change ever so slightly as the pages progress. When gone through flipbook style, the images come to life. It's this kind of interactivity that really makes the magazine stand out from the pack.

- There's a full page ad in there warning against drinking and driving, with a little memorial to genre personalities Bob Clark and John McGarr, who lost their lives thanks to drunk drivers. Touching and totally unique little addition, with a really positive message to boot.

- Little ads promote faux products to send away for, calling back to the magazines of the past. This one features a sendaway ad for the Pazuzu demon statue from The Exorcist. I want one!

- The final page of the magazine features a horror themed crossword puzzle, which Jen and I spent a good half hour last night working on. It's not often I hold any horror magazine in my hands for that long at a time.

- Several exciting recurring features are set up, including Roadkill Gore-age, which profiles killer cars in horror movies, and Crypt Critters, focusing on killer animals. There's also a nifty 'What If?' feature, which in this issue ponders what would happen if Lon Chaney became Dracula, as was the original plan before his death. The article even goes so far as to feature images of what Chaney may have looked like had he played Dracula, Frankenstein and even The Joker. Once again, this kinda content gives the mag that fun blogging feel.

As you've probably gathered by now, the name of the game with Mad Monster is FUN. It's just plain fun from cover to cover, managing to make you feel like a monster loving kid again with each flip of the page. I cannot recommend this one highly enough, and I truly mean that. Like I said, the Freddy In Space seal of approval is stamped all over this thing and I am highly excited for the future of this little monster.

I must mention that while Mad Monster is an independently released newcomer to the game, that is not at all reflected in the quality of the magazine. The magazine is absolutely beautiful and is printed on very thick paper, making it perhaps the highest quality horror mag on the market, in terms of production value. On top of that, it's also the cheapest on the market, with each issue going for a mere $6.66. Shipping charges will also apply for most being that it's not yet available at too many retailers, but I have a feeling that's gonna be changing real soon. Want to help bring about that change? Head over to your favorite retailer and demand they carry it!

If you'd like to subscribe (yes please), you can pick up either a year (13 issue) subscription or a half a year (6 issue) one. Head over to Mad Monster for all the details.

South Park Lampoons The Human Centipede!

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Aside from being a pretty damn terrifying horror movie, The Human Centipede's whacky and off the wall concept has already, in just under a year after its mainstream release, become woven into the fabric of American pop culture. The horrors of ass to mouth action have been immortalized in everything from action figures to Christmas ornaments and the film has been turned into a musical and even a hardcore porn parody. So what's next for the Centipede on the pop culture radar? As far as i'm concerned, this day and age, you haven't really 'made it' until South Park does a spoof of you. This Wednesday night, The Human Centipede can check that one off the list. Check out the preview for 'HUMAN CENTiPAD' below!


So what do the stars of the flick think about this upcoming spoof? I reached out to the Centipede's end piece, Ashlynn Yennie, to find out. Here's what she had to say!

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"I thought the porn parody was awesome but THIS IS HUGE! SOUTH PARK is WAYYYY better than porn, anyday! I feel very accomplished being drawn into an episode. I am on all fours again but hey, it counts!"

The episode airs this Wednesday night at 10/9c. Don't miss it!

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Shit I Want In My Easter Basket : Lots Of Things From T-Shirt Bordello!

I stumbled upon a company called T-Shirt Bordello the other night and though I intended to only feature one product in this post, as I do with these kinda posts, I found myself unable to pick just one. So here's a bunch of cool shit I want from T-Shirt Bordello, a site that specializes in humorous shirts as well as cool movie tie in products!

*These first three items are t-shirts*

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BUY ME!

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BUY ME!

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BUY ME!

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BUY ME!

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BUY ME!

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BUY ME!

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BUY ME!

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BUY ME!

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BUY ME!

Head over to T-Shirt Bordello for more cool shit. Currently if you buy three shirts, you will get one FREE!

Friday, April 22, 2011

My Top Tearjerker Moments In Horror

Earlier today, a staffer posted a list on Dread Central which highlighted his top 10 moments from horror movies that made him cry. Go read it. Being that i'm a total bitch when it comes to movies, I wanted to make a reply to that post with the moments that have done the same for me. Though I couldn't come up with ten, a few select scenes from the past several years did immediately come to mind. So here are the movies (and TV show) and the scenes in those movies (and TV show) that made my beard wet with flowing eye juice!

... obviously, spoilers run wild in this post ...

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The Devil's Rejects

I always feel weird talking about the fact that I sometimes get a bit misty eyed at the end of this movie. Zombie performed an amazing feat with this one by making the audience not only feel for but kinda love the titular characters, even though they do some pretty horrible shit to some pretty innocent people throughout the movie. Sure they skin faces and wear them. Sure they throw knives into hearts. And sure they sleep with dead cheerleaders. But damnit, I can't help but sympathize with Otis, Spaulding and Baby when they're in their car, driving into their final blaze of glory. The look on Otis' face as he realizes their fate says it all. Despite the fact that they may be some evil motherfuckers, it's quite sad to see them go and the video footage of them happy and together along with Free Bird playing in the background doesn't do much to quell the need for tissues.

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Frozen

More than a few times, I have heard the Frozen haters of the world bash the movie for its "terrible acting." This is something I will never understand. I found the acting to be pretty damn good, especially from Ms. Emma Bell. In an absolutely gut wrenching scene that probably made the Ultimate Warrior himself squirt out a few, Emma tearfully talks about her dog, who she just knows is awaiting her arrival back home, an arrival she is pretty sure will never come. She talks about how sad and lonely her dog will be and how it will likely starve to death without anyone to feed it. Adam Green tapped into something incredible with this scene, a realness that i've never seen any other horror movie tap into. These are the things we would think about if we were stuck up on a ski lift, waiting to die, which is why this scene is so effective and devastating. I don't think i've ever seen a character in a horror movie ponder the effect that their impending death is going to have on their loved ones back home and I think it's so brilliant that Green portrayed that very real feeling we all get when we're in situations that seem inescapable.

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The Mist

This is the only repeat from Dread Central's list, which I simply couldn't not include. The ending to The Mist is absolutely without question one of the most devastating film endings of all time and like Dread Central said, i'm still to this day shocked it was allowed to make the final cut. David (Thomas Jane) one by one kills all of the survivors of the general store giant bug outbreak, including his own small child. He then realizes that if he had waited just a few more moments, the whole group would have been saved. It's an ending so bleak and hopeless that you wish David would've had another bullet for himself, so that he didn't have to live with what he just did.

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Eden Lake

Eden Lake is one of my favorite horror movies in recent years, even if it makes me incredibly angry at my fellow humans every time I watch it. Good people are subjected to terrible shit by terrible people in the real world all the time and this movie perfectly captures that dark side of humanity and how easily everything we have can be stripped away from us. It's the scene where Steve (Michael Fassbender) is bleeding out from injuries sustained during an intense sequence of torture that really gets to me. His wife finds a wedding ring in his bloody pocket, wherein he reveals that he had planned to propose to her during their trip to the lake, plans of a happy life together that were ripped away by a group of young people who for no reason at all set their sights on destroying that happiness. It's movies like this that really make you cherish every day not spent running for your life from sick psychopaths.

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Last House on the Left '09

I'm no stranger to rape scenes in movies and this one isn't the most disturbing one i've seen, but as I sat in the theatre watching the Last House remake with my girlfriend, tears began to flow down my face. Rape always gets to me, no matter how many times I see it depicted on film, and on this particular occasion I found myself putting my girlfriend in the victim's shoes, which really brought to life how brutal and horrible of a thing it is. It was probably this projecting more than the scene itself that made me cry, but it's an incredibly raw and powerful scene nonetheless.

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The Walking Dead

Episode 5 of The Walking Dead. Amy (Emma Bell's character ... yep, second time she made me cry) dies. Her sister Andrea (Laurie Holden ... also her second appearance on the list) waits for her inevitable return to life as a zombie, which occurs in a most unexpected and emotional of ways. While all zombie material that has come before it shows the turn from human to zombie as being a horrific and frightening one, this scene manages to be incredibly beautiful and sad. Amy still clearly has hints of humanity to her, even as a zombie, and her re-animation serves as a chance for her sister to say goodbye ... before she's forced to pull the trigger on her. For my money it's the best zombie resurrection scene of all time, a totally innovative and heart rendering one.
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So what horror movie moments have made you cry? Let it all out in the comments section below, ya big baby!!

Alex Pardee Adds The Cannibal Holocaust Crew To His Favorite Monsters Series!

Remember Alex Pardee's 'My Favorite Monsters' series of art prints that I blogged about a few months back? No? Then click on this link and catch up before you read on!

Pretty cool, eh? Well Pardee just added a few new monsters to the series, including two of the more memorable characters from Cannibal Holocaust. Check 'em out below ... if you dare!!

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Image and video hosting by TinyPic

You can pick up prints of these over at Pardee's shop, Zero Friends. Cannibal Girl is 8"x10" and will run you $15 while Cannibal Chief is the standard 'My Favorite Monsters' size of 5"x7" and is only $10. Also check out the shop for new Big Trouble In Little China inspired prints!

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Valuable Life Lessons Horror Movies Have Taught Me : #3

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Never ... and I mean NEVER ... fuck with a girl on her period.

10 Horror Action Figures That Never Saw The Light of Day!

You've probably gathered by now that i'm a big time action figure guy. Collecting toys is a hobby many of us grow out of once our balls start spurting little wiry hairs, but it's one that I am very proud to say I never have and most likely never will lose interest in. At 24 years of age, you can still often find me perusing the aisles at Toys R Us, looking for the next gem to add to my collection ... and somehow still managing to get laid in the process (god bless you, Jen).

When it comes to the horror genre, we've gotten many kickass gems over the years (still can't believe there's an action figure on the market of the bug arm girl from Dream Master), but we've also been robbed of many more, mostly due to the flopping of one particular series of toys, as well as because of licensing issues. Here are ten of those figures that were made, but will unfortunately never make their way into our homes.

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This was part of SOTA Toys Now Playing Series 4, an entire series which never got mass produced due to SOTA discontinuing the Now Playing line. As you may have noticed by the second shot above from 2006's Comic Con, the figure was set to come with Dr. Hill's head in a tray and even the infamous zombie cat from the film.

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Executive Replicas whipped up this 12" version of West, which was going to be limited to 1,000 pieces and distributed by Amok Time. As it turned out, the doll ended up being limited to only one piece. To this day, an action figure of West still eludes us.

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The Leprechaun was also part of the planned fourth series of SOTA's Now Playing line. The first picture is the figure along with the base, the second is the alternate 'melting' head that was to come with it and the last one is a bust which also never made it to the factory.

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Here we have another Now Playing series 4 screw job. Though this guy never made it to market, another Killer Klowns figure was released in Now Playing series 2 and a couple are going to soon be released by Amok Time, so all is not lost.

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Yep, you guessed it ... Now Playing series 4. Damn you, SOTA!!

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Though SOTA previously released American Werewolf's Nazi demon as well as a mini bust of the titular monster, this Now Playing two pack of dead Jack and werewolf David forever taunts us with its endless playability potential.

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The last of the Now Playing Series 4 massacre is the zombified Captain Blake from the remake of The Fog. Don't know why they chose to make a figure from the remake rather than the original, but I guess it didn't matter in the end anyway, now did it?

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This was supposed to be an epic Ring box set, the concept art for which you see in the second shot. The set was to feature one Samara figure and two bases, with the figure coming apart at the waist to either depict her coming out of the TV or standing by the well, when she's put together. The set became a part of action figure hell when NECA couldn't acquire the proper licensing.

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And finally, we have Zombie Ed from Shaun of the Dead. Ed was immortalized in both 6 inch & 12 inch plastic a couple years back, but it's not looking like we'll ever get to have undead Ed as a plaything. This was intended to be a part of NECA's Cult Classics Hall of Fame series 2 line.

I wish I had the opportunity to play with you all ...

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Wacky Packages Erasers!

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I don't know about you, but when I was a kid Wacky Packages were the shit. My dad was a big time card collector back in the day and I used to always get a kick out of the totally immature and clever spin off's of popular products that Topps came up with. Along with Garbage Pail Kids, Wacky Packages have been making a big resurgence lately, with coffee table books and even t-shirts currently on the market. The latest offering from Topps, Wacky Packages Erasers, were just released last month and I just recently picked up a pack from Target. Let's take a look inside!

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Each pack of WPE's contains three stickers and three matching collectible erasers, which are cooler than they sound. Though they do have the ability to erase your pencil errors, the erasers are molded to actually look like the product being lampooned, making them little mini replicas of those products. You'll see what I mean in a second. Check out what I got inside my pack!

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We've got Spite, Zit Kat and, what's that ...

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JUST FOR MOTHERFUCKIN' WOLFMEN! How fitting that a hairy horror fan like myself pulled that one, eh? Apparently this card/eraser is rare, though I don't think a little sticker or eraser can be worth more than some pocket change. Oh wow, I take that back. A quick eBay search just found one listing for the combo, with three bids and a current price of over 6 bucks! Sweet, but I think i'll keep my Just For Wolfmen for myself, so that I can get rid of those pesky and highly dangerous silver hairs.

Nope, i'll never grow up.

Region 2 For The Win : Arrow Video's Silent Night, Deadly Night DVD

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A few weeks back I made a post on the kickassed'ness that is Arrow Video, a home video label in the UK that focuses their attention on comprehensive DVD & Blu-ray releases of genre faves, all wrapped in a bouquet of mind blowing hand drawn cover art. Refer back to that post to see some of that amazing art and to learn more. I'm happy to report that I just recently got my very first Arrow DVD in the mail and, as expected, I am completely blown away and highly impressed. It's one of my favorite slasher movies of all time and I now am the proud owner of what is without question its ultimate DVD release (though I will still of course hold on to my rare and out of print part 1 & 2 two pack). I am of course speaking of the holiday horror classic, Silent Night, Deadly Night. Allow me to do my best to convince all fans of the flick to hurry over to AMAZON.CO.UK and buy this release right this instant!

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Pretty kickass cover art, eh? Bet you wish you had a poster of that art, am I right? Well Arrow Video has included just that; a 14x21 mini poster of Rick Melton's stunning cover art!! On the flipside of the poster is an Arrow Video promotional poster, which showcases some of their other amazing releases, including Dawn of the Dead, House By The Cemetery and Macabre.

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Speaking of reversible art, the cover art itself is also reversible, allowing you to choose between Melton's drawn art or the original SNDN poster art. I think you know which art I chose, but it's still really cool to have options!

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In addition, you also get a 19 page booklet that features an interview with director Charles Sellier as well as a piece on the films scantily clad scream queen, Linnea Quigley - which includes a pretty comprehensive picture gallery of Quigley's many tit shots!

As for the disc itself, the film is totally uncut, as both out of print American DVD releases were. The previously cut footage is still from a different source than the rest of the print, so there is a noticeable quality difference with those bits, but what can ya do. In terms of special features, we only get a trailer and an audio interview with Sellier, which was included on both Region 1 releases. If I have any problem with this release it's that the special features are lacking. Can't help but feel like a commentary with Sellier and/or Quigley could've easily been included, as well as new interviews with the cast and crew, but I find it hard to really complain about a release that includes a booklet, kickass VHS style art and a poster. So I think i'll settle!

Special feature issue aside, this is how you do a goddamn DVD release. Us Americans have been severely slacking in that department lately, with very few DVD's even coming with so much as scene rundown cards anymore. It's really nice to buy a DVD and have it come loaded with little extra goodies, a department that Arrow Video is totally excelling in (hell, the DVD even smells better than the others in my collection!). If you're a fan of Silent Night, Deadly Night, this is an absolute must buy if ya ask me. For those in the US who are wondering, you can get it shipped to your door for $18.66.

Rest In Peace, Blockbuster

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It is with great sadness that I tell you that the Blockbuster in my area officially shutdown a couple weeks back, the same Blockbuster that I spent many a day of my childhood in, perusing the seemingly neverending wall of gloriously decorated horror VHS boxes (and the same one I later worked at ... briefly). As the years wore on my love affair with Blockbuster ended, with me eventually becoming an advocate speaker against the company that charged over five dollars for a movie rental (I even staged a boycott of sorts last year), I cannot say that I won't miss the place for all the joy it provided me as a youngster ... and for, in the past couple years, giving me somewhere to go on my lunch breaks from work (I work in the same complex as the now desolate building).

But it's not just that i'm gonna miss killing time in there or that a little piece of my childhood has faded with the times. It's more about what this means as a whole. The inevitable has happened; internet killed the video store. With Hollywood Video going under and all of the Blockbuster's in the country slowly and surely following suit, the days of going into a store to rent a movie are sadly behind us. Sure we now have much easier and cheaper options at our disposal, but I can't help but shed a tear inside for the generation of movie fans that will never know the joys of heading out to the video store on a Friday night, on the hunt for the next great gem. Sorry Netflix and Redbox, though I love you guys, you will never be able to compete with that.

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Of course, the closing of Blockbuster brought a silver lining along with it, in the form of seriously discounted former rentals over the course of the last several weeks. Above you'll see the pile I managed to score, all for about 40 bucks. And no, before you criticize me I will point it out myself; your eyes do not deceive you, that is infact the Elm Street remake in that pile. I still strongly dislike the movie but i'm a Krueger completist and I figured it would be good to have lying around for blogging reference (pulling pictures to make fun of it and such). So bugger off, will ya? I have my reasons!

Blockbuster, I hope someday someone creates a time machine and we can meet up back in the early 90's. For now, you will be missed. The memories you've given me will forever remain in my heart. Though they only consisted of me looking at a wall of tapes, they are truly some of the finest and clearest memories from my childhood. All I need to do is close my eyes or take a look at the sun faded beat up VHS copy of Dream Warriors I keep on my desk, and it's like i'm 7 years old again.

To end this on a positive note, i've uploaded the awesome opening from the 1990 flick There's Nothing Out There! below, which features a peek inside a classic mom and pop video store. I truly hope all of you reading this got to experience this kinda place first hand!



VIVA LA VIDEO STORE!

Shit I Want In My Easter Basket : Limited Edition Gingerdead Man Replica!

Remember last month how excited I was about Full Moon's Gingerdead Man Halloween mask? Well forget that thing. That was so March 24th, 2011. The evil cookie just got a big time upgrade in the merch department, as a full scale limited edition replica puppet was just released today over at the Full Moon website. Numbered and signed, each replica includes a display base and is one of only 200 pieces worldwide. I. NEED. THIS.

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The Busey cookie sells for $200 but today only, as part of Full Moon's 4/20 sale, $50 has been slashed off the price. In addition, pretty much everything over at the Full Moon shop is 42.0% off (get it?). Spark up that Evil Bong and get to shoppin'.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

We're Half Way To Halloween!

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Now that Easter is upon us, it is officially time to start gearing up for Halloween. We're halfway there and Trick 'r Treat director Michael Dougherty just whipped up a kickass little video for FEARnet that brings a little early Halloween fun to this Sunday's proceedings. Return of Sam may or may not be included. Check out the MUST WATCH video below!



Only six more months till Halloween and FEARnet's annual Trick 'r Treat all day marathon!!