Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Order The First Ever Freddy In Space Art Print!

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 If you follow the blog on the Facebook, then you're familiar with this image, which has been the cover photo of the Facebook page for the last several months.  This was a piece that I commissioned Patrick Carson Sparrow to whip up for me, with the intention at the time of just using it as a marketing postcard, which I could include in giveaway prize packages and hand out at conventions and such.  But I was so blown away by the finished product (which was inspired by the old Fright Flicks wrappers!), that I just knew I at some point had to print up the image, and make it available for sale here on the blog.  I've gotten many requests over the years to make a Freddy In Space t-shirt or poster, and I couldn't possibly think of any image more badass than this one to do so with.
 
The other day I found my way over to a site called Society6, where artists can upload images of their art, and make those images available for sale through the site, on everything from posters to pillows.  The thing that immediately won me over about the site is that anytime a sale is made, they take care of the printing, on an on demand basis, as well as the shipping, neither at any cost to the artist.  Essentially, the artist gets to be an artist, and create art, and they take care of all the rest.  Of course, they also take the majority of the profits, and only a small portion of those profits go to the artist, but since I'm not in any of this for the money, I knew this was the perfect place for me.  It was very stressful and costly getting those recent Halloween 3 posters printed up and shipped out, and it looks like Society6 is the perfect solution to all that.  This is likely the way I'll be doing all future Freddy In Space exclusive art prints, in the event that everything works out as smoothly as it seems like it's going to.
 
How it works is they have a base price for each product that they can print any given image on, and the artist gets to raise the price however high they want from there, and pocket the difference between the base price and their price (minus a small fee).  So for example an 8"x10" print of any given piece has a base price of $12.  If you want to sell it in your shop for $15, you make $3 from each sale, minus that aforementioned small fee.  You can go as high or as low as you want, as long as it's above the base price.
 
Again, since I'm not in this for the money, I've cut back the prices on these as low as possible, and I won't be making more than a couple bucks per each sale.  Basically, that money will go to repaying myself for the cost of the commission of this piece.  The idea is more to get some cool art on your wall, than put money in my pocket.  And hey, it doesn't hurt that the art that'll be on your wall is promotional material for my blog!
 
So head over to my Society6 shop, where you can pick up the print in sizes as small as 7"x10", starting at a mere 15 bucks.  It makes a great holiday gift, or a terrific final pre-holiday splurge for yourself!
 
Annnnnd .... as a special added bonus, I've just dropped another little treat in the Freddy In Space Society6 shop, courtesy of artist and friend Frank Browning.  Frank and I are currently hard at work on a faux Silent Night, Deadly Night NES game, for that just launched NES Dream Games feature here on the blog, and he took some time away from that to whip up a super badass 8-Bit SNDN poster, which is now being sold over in the shop!
 

All proceeds go to the restoration of Ira's Toys!!

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

NES Dream Games - Friday The 13th : Anthology

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Artist Frank Browning and I have teamed up for countless blog posts over the course of the last several months, since arriving in each others' lives.  But one area I've yet to tap into is Frank's incredible talent for 8-bit art, and whipping up images that look like they were pulled straight out of old school NES video games.  Well, Frank and I have decided to remedy that, with a little recurring feature called NES Dream Games, where we imagine a world where some of our favorite horror movies were turned into Nintendo games back in the day, all for your viewing pleasure.

First up, we're gonna pretend that godawful Friday The 13th NES game from 1988 was never made.  You know the one, the one that pit camp counselors not only against an atrocious looking Jason, but also wolves, zombies, and bats ... what the?!  Suffice to say, the game wasn't exactly true to the movies it was based on, aside from the fact that it featured camp counselors getting killed by a dude in a purple jumpsuit and a baby blue hockey mask, whose weapon of choice was a giant toothbrush.

What if, instead, the game was actually based directly on the Friday The 13th movies, and you could play as a multitude of characters from those movies, and even choose adventures based on the individual installments?  That's what Frank Browning envisioned for Friday The 13th : Anthology, an idea he and his friend Steven Morrison worked on and executed together.  The ideas are pretty much 100% theirs, being that this concept was basically Frank's pitch to me for the feature, so I can't really take any of the credit on this one.

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So pop in the cartridge and enjoy Friday The 13th : Anthology, an NES game that lives only in our dreams!

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In addition to the regular 'Choose Your Adventure' game, where you play in environments from the different installments in the franchise, Frank also came up with the idea of a 'Versus' mode, where you get to pick two characters, and have them do battle against one another.  

So let's say you were to pick Jason and Crazy Ralph...

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I don't know about you, but I for one would love to see Tommy Jarvis kick Mrs. Voorhees' ass.  And who the hell is the locked character, Frank, I just gotta know!!

Huge thanks to Frank and Steven for this.  Expect many more of these in the future, and as we do more of them, and figure out the best ways to execute these ideas, I expect them to be even more awesome.  So consider this a mere glimpse of the awesomeness that is to come!!

Awesome Horror Inspired Nail Art!

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I recently found and posted the above picture on the Freddy In Space Facebook page, having no idea where the image came from, or who the hell the artist was, but being totally jaw gaped by its awesomeness.  Reader Andrew Heath informed me that the artist/model is a woman by the name of Kayleigh O'Connor, thereby unleashing upon me a treasure trove of epic pop culture inspired nail art.  I soon realized that Ms. O'Connor is the reigning Queen of the art of making one's nails look like incredibly kickass pieces of art, to the point that she kinda sort makes me wish I was a lass, so I could attempt to do the same on my own nails.  Then again, my inability to color inside the lines, still at the age of 26, would likely prevent me from even being able to paint my nails simple colors.  But I digress.

Of course, my favorite nail jobs of Kayleigh's are of the horror persuasion, and it's her horror themed nail art that I'm here to share with ya tonight.  Dig it!!

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You can see even more awesomeness of the sort by heading over to Kayleigh O'Connor's Facebook fan page, which is devoted entirely to pictures of her incredible nail art.  

Here at Freddy In Space, we salute you, Kayleigh!!

Monday, November 26, 2012

Cool Shit : Alistair Legrand's Music Videos!

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Some time last year, I got an e-mail from a director by the name of Alistair Legrand, who messaged me to talk horror VHS and also to drop me a link to a music video he had directed.  I was totally blown away by the video, and had every intention to share it on here, but if I'm being honest, it ended up being one of those things that I just totally forgot about.  It happens ... a lot more than I'd like to admit.

Cut to a few months back.  I get another e-mail from Alistair, with another batch of awesome horror themed music videos he recently directed.  After watching them, there was simply no way I could ever forget the name Alistair Legrand, and certainly no way I could forget to post his work.

So then, it's time to fix that little slip of the mind from last year!

To give a little background on Alistair, he's a director that's a part of a group called The Masses, a collective of visionary directors "united by a passion for music and driven by unique and diverse cinematic visions."  In other words, they're super talented artists who have joined together to create original and unique art.  As you will soon see, original and unique is pretty much what Alistair and the gang are all about.

With that brief introduction out of the way, I encourage you to raise the volume, lower the lights, and sit back and enjoy these four music videos, directed by Mr. Alistair Legrand.  Trust me, you won't regret it!


This was the original video that Alistair sent my way, a beautiful and haunting mix of exceptional music and dancing zombies.  At least they look like zombies, particularly the ones from The Dead.


We go from haunting to utterly badass and super bloody with this one, which Alistair told me was influenced by Texas Chainsaw Massacre Part 2 and the awesome VHS box art for The Exterminator.  I don't know about you, but slow motion chainsaw carnage totally works for me.  Especially when everything hit with said chainsaw bleeds, be it a birthday cake or a Barbie doll.  If only that was the case in real life, am I right?!


This next one essentially plays like a creepy as can be short horror film, with little winks and nods to some of Alistair's favorite horror movies throughout.  See how many you can pick out!


This final one was filmed at California's Linda Vista Community Hospital, a supposedly haunted abandoned hospital that was seen on the show Ghost Adventurers, and in a slew of recent horror films.  The song is French, but one need not be French, or speak a lick of it, to marvel at its creepy beauty.  So marvel away!

In watching these videos, I can't help but fiend for the day when Legrand directs a horror film.  No idea if he has any passion or desire to take his career down that path, but boy would I love to see him impart his incredible visual style unto the world of horror films.  What say you, Alistair?!

You can see more of Legrand's work, and the work of his equally talented friends, over at We Are The Masses!

2012 Holiday Gift Guide : Cavity Colors' Cotton Candy Cocoon Art Print!

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As a mega fan of Killer Klowns From Outer Space myself, I can attest to the fact that this is one of the coolest and most unique pieces of Killer Klowns art out there, which makes it one hell of an awesome gift for the Klowns fan in your life.

This here is an 11"x14" print, limited to only 20 pieces, and it's the first of a series of five cotton candy cocoon themed art prints from artist Aaron Crawford, who launched his company Cavity Colors earlier this year, a company whose purpose is "to invoke the same feeling you get while eating a slice of birthday cake with ice cream on top and watching your favorite slasher movie after midnight."  As odd as that sounds, it kinda makes sense, when I look at Aaron's art!

The creepy cocoon is printed on 100% velvet cotton paper, and can be purchased for 20 bucks over at Cavity Colors, where you can see all of Aaron's ass kicking art.  I encourage you to do so!
 
If this doesn't do it for ya, and you're looking for something different for the Killer Klowns fan in your life, or for yourself (greedy bastard!), might I suggest the cotton candy cocoon bottle cozy I posted about a couple months back?  Good, because I just did!

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Vintage Video Of The Week : Jamie Lee Curtis On SNL!

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On December 13th, 1980, fresh off of cementing herself as the Scream Queen of all Scream Queens, with roles in Halloween, The Fog, Prom Night & Terror Train, Jamie Lee Curtis hosted Saturday Night Live for the first time (she hosted again in '84), on the fourth episode of the sixth season.  This week, we head back to that night.

Enjoy Jamie Lee's opening monologue from the December 1980 episode of SNL, where she essentially dressed as a sexy version of her on screen nemesis, Michael Myers!


As a special added bonus, I wanted to include video of one of Curtis' skits from the episode, but was very bummed to discover that no such clips exist on the internet.  And then I remembered that Netflix currently has most of SNL's old school episodes available for instant streaming, including this one.  Though for some reason they left out the one skit I wanted to share with you tonight, a horror spoof about killer clothespins called Attack of the Terrible Snapping Creatures (wherein a clothespin clamps onto Jamie Lee's luscious boobies!), there's another pretty funny and decidedly morbid one that I filmed off my computer screen, for your viewing pleasure.

But first, another awesome bumper image from the episode, featuring Michael Myers!

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 The skit I'm including below is called Dying To Be Heard, and in it Curtis plays a depressed poet, who kills herself on the air so that her latest poem can be read to the world.  It's no Attack of the Terrible Snapping Creatures, but it'll have to do!

Once again I say, ENJOY!!


Electric Zombie's Black Friday-Cyber Monday Mega Sale!!

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Sorry for spreading the word on this a bit late into it, but Electric Zombie is running a big time sale over in their web store, which began on Black Friday and continues through tomorrow, AKA Cyber Monday.  Their regularly priced $20 shirts have been slashed down to only $13, including the brand new Fall releases, and posters have been cut back to a shocking $2.50 ... and we're talking 18"x24" full size posters here.  In fact, pretty much every item they sell has been considerably lowered in price, including skate decks, baseball caps and hoodies.
 
 Head over to Electric Zombie to take advantage, and take a gander below to see just a few of their newest designs, which are now available on $13 shirts and $2.50 posters!!
 
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Friday, November 23, 2012

Silent Night, Deadly Night : Inside Ira's Toys!

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I could literally make up an endless list of things I love about Silent Night, Deadly Night, a movie that I will never tire of getting drunk and having a blast with, each and every year around this time.  At the tip top of that list would have to be the Ira's Toys location, where we first meet the adult Billy, and where Billy is driven into a murderous Santa suit clad rage.

Named after the producer of the film, Ira Barmak, the fictional Ira's Toys is heavily featured in the early parts of Silent Night, and is absolutely jam packed with awesome vintage toys from the '70s and '80s.  Since nobody really had the foresight to take pictures inside of toy stores back in those days, it's movies like Silent Night, Deadly Night that have forever preserved the look and feel of the old school mom and pop toy store, and for that, I am eternally thankful.  One of my favorite things about watching the film is spending a solid half hour in Ira's Toys, where I always manage to notice a new vintage treasure that I had never noticed before.

So this holiday season, I've decided to gather together screen grabs of all those treasures I have discovered over my many years of watching the film, and pass them on to you.  I now gift to you an in-depth inside look at Ira's Toys, and all the vintage awesomeness that will forever be packed into it, thanks to the magic of the movies!
 
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One of the first things we see in the store, as Billy punches in for his first day of work, is this Ben Cooper G.I. Joe Halloween costume, from 1982.  Ben Cooper rose to mega popularity in the Halloween world by releasing licensed costumes such as this one, though this particular costume was released right around the time the company started to lose its footing.  In fact, the year it was released was the same year seven people died after ingesting Tylenol laced with Cyanide, right before Halloween, which resulted in parents not letting their kids out trick or treating, and the company in turn suffering huge financial losses that year.
 
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As the camera pans out, we see even more vintage Ben Cooper costumes, including Batman, Mickey Mouse and various monsters.  Gotta love the fact that Ira leaves this stuff out, even around Christmas time!

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Speaking of G.I. Joe, a sealed box of Hasbro G.I. Joe toys appears on the ground in one scene, just waiting for Billy to crack it open.  Though it's a bit hard to read the print on the box, close inspection reveals that it's a case of 12 Falcon Gliders, released back in '83.

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On the more feminine side of things, we've got a display of back to school portfolios from the Poochie line, an early '80s pink haired dog toy from Mattel.  Poochie spawned a whole laundry list of merchandise, and was even given her own VHS movie!

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In this shot, Billy and Pamela stand in front of a display of Kenner Star Wars toys, some of the most iconic action figures of all time.  Most instantly recognizable is the Jabba The Hut playset, from the Return of the Jedi line.

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To the right of the Star Wars display, we see various car themed toys, including Slotrace, Stomper, and Hot Wheels Wipe-Out, the latter of which was a board game released by Mattel way back in 1968.  Certainly one of the oldest toys on Ira's shelves!
 
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Panning the camera over a bit more, we see Matchbox's Super Garage playset, released in the late '70s.  One of the main selling points of this set was that it had an operational elevator lift, which could bring cars all the way from the ground to the top level.  Ah, the good old days, when simple things like a toy parking garage could entertain kids for hours.

Of course gotta give a shout out to the Mr. Potato Head toy, which Billy is seen playing with here!

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Hanging below the Star Wars shelf, which we see in a later scene than the previous few photos, is a toy that's very hard to distinguish, but is probably recognizable to anyone who had one back in the day.  Can anyone guess what it is?  Yes?  No?  Maybe so?

That's Manglodactyl from the super awesome Manglors line, a giant winged creature that would always return to its original form, no matter how much you stretched it and beat it up.  Manglors were released by Ideal in 1984, and Manglodactyl was a part of the first wave.  Later releases of the toys were packaged inside of plastic eggs!
 
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Hanging next to the Manglors are a few handcuff playsets, with a Wild Bill Hickok theme.  This was likely a cheap-o dollar store item, as I can't find a single picture of one anywhere on the net.

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Underneath the hanging toys mentioned above we find the Krull board game, based on the movie and released in 1983.  If it weren't for Ira stocking this in his toy shop, it's likely that I would've never known such a board game even existed.  I mean Krull, really?!

Next to the Krull game is Ideal's Torture Track, a toy that dates back to 1966, and allowed kids to watch battery operated toy slot cars drive around and through various road hazards, including a brick wall!

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Speaking of board games, check out the Popeye game hanging out behind Ira in this shot. This was of course the official board game of the 1980 Popeye film, starring Robin Williams and Shelley Duvall.

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On the top shelf of this shot you will see a Pac-Man looking little guy called Mr. Mouth, a game released by Tomy in 1976, four years before Pac-Man made his debut.  The object of the game was to throw all your game pieces into Mr. Mouth's mouth, which would rotate around and open and close.  When Milton Bradley took over Tomy Toys, Mr. Mouth was turned into a green frog, presumably to distance the toy from the Pac-Man comparison.

Underneath Mr. Mouth is a Groucho Marx doll and a brown stuffed animal (middle shelf) that I can't quite place.  Looks totally familiar though.  Anyone?!

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In the scene where Billy is playing Santa Claus in the store, and greeting children, the Stuff Yer Face board game is seen behind some of the parents.  Released by Milton Bradley in '82, Stuff Yer Face was a fairly creepy game that required you to use puppet arms to stuff marbles into a scary clown's mouth.  Yeaaaaa, glad this one wasn't lying around the house when I was a kid!

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Here we have a 'Movie/TV Monster Make-Up' kit, which appears to have Barnabas Collins on the front of the packaging.  Wasn't able to find any of these online, but I did find a very similar looking kit from the '70s, released by a company called Dekker, which leads me to believe that this kit is from the same era, and the same company.  These kits were apparently created by makeup legend Dick Smith, and they allowed kids to transforms themselves into all sorts of different monsters.  Dick (Smith) in a box, if you will!

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We round out our stay at Ira's Toys with my favorite thing I was able to spot in the shop; the Masters of the Universe Castle Grayskull playset, seen in this shot, above a drunken Ira's head.  It looks like there's some sort of promotional standee next to Grayskull ... and what's that hanging below?  Let's zoom in a little closer on that...

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Ah ha!  That'd be a He-Man and Battle Cat kite, a vintage treasure so awesome that even Billy couldn't help but smile, while in its presence.  Even when you're on a murderous rampage, there's just something about He-Man riding Battle Cat that warms the heart, am I right?  And that image above just about warms my heart more than anything I think I've ever laid eyes on.  Oddly enough, I somehow never noticed this until I went through the movie tonight, for this here post!

And with that, it's time to lock up Ira's Toys for the night.  It's Friday night and Ira's gotta get wasted, so that concludes our tour of the coolest toy store in movie history.  Don't let the door hit your ass on the way out!

Take it away, Ira!!

2012 Holiday Gift Guide : Chainsaw Scarf!

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Right around this time last year, I held a giveaway for a Human Centipede scarf, which was generously donated to me by its creator, Amanda Lane (the lovely woman you see above).  Amanda runs an Etsy shop called Knottyfingers, wherein she crochets all sorts of awesome goodies, everything from Cthulhu ski masks to cheeseburger earrings.  Not only is she still making and selling the Human Centipede scarves over there, but she even recently added a handmade Human Centipede doll to the mix, which pretty much seals the deal that she's the most delightfully twisted chick to ever wield a crochet hook.

Amanda's latest creation?  The badass scarf you see above, a six foot long wearable chainsaw that provides ample amounts of both warmth and protection.  Handmade from vegan friendly super soft acrylic yarn, from an original pattern that Amanda designed, the chainsaw scarf sells for $115, and can be made in any color you want it made in, whether you're looking for a Leatherface yellow chainsaw or an Ash Williams red, as pictured.
 
 Now here's where things get even better.  Amanda is running a Black Friday through Cyber Monday sale over at Knottyfingers, where every item in the shop is selling for 40% off the regular price.  All you've gotta do is enter the code GOBBLE40 at checkout, from now through this coming Monday, and nearly half will be slashed off of the listed price.  If I'm doing the math correctly, that means you can score this chainsaw scarf, for yourself or for a loved one, for around $70, instead of $115.  I'm pretty sure you'll never again be able to pick one of these up for that cheap, so get on it while ya can!

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Awesome Art : Universal Monsters Madballs!

The Mondo Gallery in Austin, Texas recently ran a Universal Monsters themed art show, which actually just wrapped up about a week ago.  My favorite pieces from the exhibit were painted by Madballs illustrator/designer James Groman, the super cool dude that I interviewed right here on Freddy In Space, a couple months back (one of my favorite posts that I've ever made, in the many years I've now been blogging!).

For the Mondo show, Groman took the theme of the exhibit and infused it with one of the greatest monster toys of all time, creating a line of Universal Monsters Madballs that I absolutely need to own, and squeeze, right this instant.  I've got a feeling you're about to experience the very same desires!

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'CREATURE BOUNCES AMONG US'

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'FRANKENSPHERE'

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'WOLFBALL'

Over on his blog, Groman remarked that if he has his way, these paintings will be turned into actual Madballs someday.  Please God, let James have his way!!

You can check out all of the art from the show over on Mondo's website, where you can even purchase Groman's original 16x16 acrylic paintings, for $1,000 a piece.  In other words, I'm playing the lottery tonight.

My Thoughts On Mockingbird Lane (That Munsters Reboot That Everyone Hated Before It Even Aired!)

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Why the hell am I just now posting my thoughts on Mockingbird Lane, you ask?  Well, because I wasn't home on October 26th, when it aired, and in fact I still didn't get around to watching it until tonight.  Is that considered fashionably late, or am I so late to the party that nobody even cares what I think of it at this point?  Who could say, but I'm gonna share my opinions anyways, cause that's what I do!

When it was announced that the Munsters would be getting the reboot treatment, in the form of a slick new television series, the collective groans of horror fans the world over could literally be heard through the computer screen.  Horror fans don't typically take kindly to anything that touts itself as a 'remake' or a 'reboot', but when it came to this particular project, the anticipatory hatred seemed to be at an all time high, and I don't think a single friend on my Facebook feed expressed anything but heartbreak over the fact that Herman and the gang were about to be re-imagined, with the fact that they were very human looking serving as the final nail in the coffin for most Munsters fans.  As a big time Munsters guy, the thought of Jerry O'Connell playing Herman, without any monster makeup slapped on him, isn't exactly something that filled me with many good feelings.

Though I personally saw nothing about the planned series that got me excited about it, and though I admittedly feared the worst, I still hoped for the best, as I always do.  The fact of the matter is that The Munsters have been portrayed by a few different casts over the years, and though they were always basically the same characters, I'm always open to new things, and to fans of iconic franchises putting their own unique spins on them.  As hard as it may be, and in the case of this one it was pretty damn hard, I try to never judge a book by its cover, or write off any movie or TV show before I myself have seen the finished product.  That just isn't fair.

 Of course, expectations and hopes sank even lower when it was recently revealed that things weren't going so well over in Mockingbird Lane, and that the series was perhaps dead in the water, with only the pilot episode filmed.  On October 11th, it was announced that the one hour (40 minutes, without commercials) pilot would air as a stand alone Halloween special, on October 26th, with the fate of the rest of the series hanging in the balance.  Not a good sign, to say the least.  Whether or not the series will go on as planned is something we still don't know, though the special fared pretty well in the ratings.

So then, what'd I think of the Mockingbird Lane pilot/special, now that I've watched it over on NBC's website?  Well, to my complete and utter surprise, I kinda loved it!

This being a pilot and all, the special serves as an introduction to the 2012 version of the Munster family, who are very much like the Munsters we all know and love, even though they may not appear that way on the surface.

The episode kicks off with a bang, with a massive werewolf tearing apart a bunch of young boy scouts in the woods, tossing one of them into a tree in what is the coolest sleeping bag into a tree kill since Friday The 13th Part 7 (not that it has many contenders to that throne...).  The werewolf is of course Eddie Munster, who has no idea that he is in fact a werewolf.  As a result of his little rampage, the Munster family has to relocate to a new home at the start of the episode, on the titular Mockingbird Lane.

There, we meet the rest of the family.  While Lily and Marilyn are very much like their counterparts from the original series, liberties are heavily taken with Herman and Grandpa, who no longer look like Frankenstein and Dracula, respectively.  Herman is a normal looking dude, except for the fact that he has crudely stitched up scars all over his body, most noticeably around his neck and wrists.  Herman was created by Grandpa, who in this re-imagining is darker and more evil than the loveable Al Lewis.  He still plays around with his weird and whacky magic in the basement, but he's very much a vampire, in every sense of the word.  He wants to feed on human blood, and whenever he does so, he transforms into a massive winged bat beast, with two sharp front fangs.  Think those little creatures from The Gate.  Only really big, with one hell of wingspan.

In addition to the general introductions of the characters, the pilot episode mainly deals with two issues plaguing the Munsters; Herman doesn't know how to break the news to his son that he's a werewolf, and Herman loves his family so much that his heart literally can't handle it, and thus, Grandpa needs to fit him with a replacement heart.  While Herman deals with the issue of letting his son know what he is, and the real reason why they had to move, Grandpa seeks out a victim to feed on, and to provide Herman with a new ticker.  That's just about the pilot episode in a nutshell.

The thing I really dig about this show, at least so far, is that it still feels like The Munsters, while at the same time being totally different, and oozing a style all its own.  It's very much a modern day take on what was done back in the '60s, a clever and fresh new spin that hits the nail on the head of what a re-imagining is supposed to do; remind you of an old favorite, and make you smile at references to it, but be its own brand spankin' new entity, by and large.  On that front, Mockingbird Lane admirably accomplishes the seemingly impossible, and somehow manages to not make me wish death upon all involved.  Dare I say, it looks like we've got on our hands a pretty damn competent modern day Munsters here.

Though at first it's a bit off putting that the family looks too much like the normal average family, that whole angle actually works really well, and it was kind of necessary to make that change, being that this new series goes for a more dark and realistic approach to the subject matter.  It's interesting because though they look less like monsters than the original Munsters, they behave much more like the cinematic monsters they're based on than their original incarnations ever did, which was really nice to see, considering one of my biggest worries about the show was the look of the characters.  No, these are not the charming Munsters we know and love, but again, that's not what this is supposed to be.  The DNA from the original Munsters is all there, but it was time for something new, and that's precisely what this show brings to the table.  Though a lot of that '60s goofiness has been replaced with darkness, that darkness is presented in a very fun way, so the show is a lot of fun to watch, just a bit of a different kind of fun than we're used to from the Munster clan.  The laughs are all still there, but the backdrop for them is a lot more horrifying.

**CHECK OUT SOME ORIGINAL CONCEPT ART FOR HERMAN 2012, WHICH DEPICTS A MUCH MORE MONSTROUS VERSION OF THE CHARACTER THAN WHAT THEY ENDED UP GOING WITH!**

I for one sincerely hope that we get a full series out of Mockingbird Lane, as planned, or at least a complete first season.  I'm really liking what I'm seeing thus far, and though it's hard to really judge a series by only its pilot, I think it's saying something that I'm on board after only seeing the first episode, which is generally not the case with me when it comes to TV shows.

For me, Mockingbird Lane is the absolute perfect reason why you shouldn't judge a book by its cover; though everything I had seen and heard leading up to me seeing the actual product had me completely uninterested and turned off, I found myself actually quite enjoying that finished product, moreso than I ever in my wildest dreams expected to.  And I certainly never thought I'd EVER find myself typing this, in relation to this show...

I WANT MORE!!

If you originally avoided it, give the pilot a chance below.  It'll only take 40 minutes out of your day, and you might be surprised by how much you dig it!

Monday, November 19, 2012

2012 Holiday Gift Guide : Scott Campbell's Great Showdowns ... The Book!

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With Thanksgiving and Black Friday rounding out the latter portion of this week, the time for holiday shopping is now in full swing.  Christmas/Hanukkah will be here before ya know it, and you'd better start your shopping real soon.  But what do you get the fellow horror fan in your life?  As I do every year, I'm here to help out. 

For the next month or so, I present to you the Freddy In Space 2012 Holiday Gift Guide, chock full of the coolest gifts that are out there in the world, just waiting for you to gift them.  You can thank me when you see the faces of your friends and loved ones light up with ghoulish glee, as they unwrap gifts they'll never forget unwrapping, the kinds of gifts they won't toss into storage come December 26th.  So help me help you be the best gift giver you can possibly be, won't you?!

First up, we've got a gift that I myself was actually gifted a couple weeks back, when an advanced review copy popped up on my doorstep!
 
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I first blogged about artist Scott Campbell's Great Showdowns art series back in early 2011, and I went on to post even more art from the series earlier this year.  As a mega fan of the series, and Scott's simplistic almost child like approach to depicting cinema's greatest battles, I was incredibly delighted to see that Titan Books and Gallery 1988 teamed up to release some of his art from the series into a little art book (released October 30th), taking that art off the net and giving fans a chance to actually have a physical hard copy of it.  Ya know, in case the internet ever dies or anything.
 
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Basically, in a nutshell, The Great Showdowns art series is Scott's unique take on iconic big screen showdowns, be it Brody fending off Bruce the man eating shark or Drew and that little deformed hillbilly boy engaging in a battle of dueling banjos.  The Great Showdowns book features over 100 of the pieces from Scott's extensive collection, and though nearly 30 of them depict battles from horror films, the happy go lucky watercolor showdowns run the gamut of genres, with everything from ET to Cuckoo's Nest and Elf to Fight Club represented.  Essentially, the book encapsulates several decades of great cinematic battles, as you would find them doodled by a child in the back of his school notebook.  Charming?  Highly!
 
The Great Showdowns is my favorite kind of book; a picture book, with none of those boring words to read through.  The book does feature a very short foreword by Neil Patrick Harris, followed by a brief intro from Scott, but from there on out it's all images.
 
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True, all of Scott's Great Showdowns art is available for free browsing over on his website, but nevertheless, it's nice to have a physical copy in hand, and this books makes a wonderful, and cheap little gift.  The book is currently selling for just over $10 on Amazon, so you really can't go wrong.  For the film fan, Great Showdowns is a must have coffee table book, a great conversation piece that should always be lying around to put a smile on your face, when you need it most.

As Neil Patrick Harris remarks in his foreword; "The more I look at Scott Campbell's work, the bigger a fan I become."  Amen, NPH.  AMEN!