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Preview: the Jaded Skeptic, Odd Jack

Jack Salazar, the Jaded Skeptic is a...

Liberal. Cheese Fiend. Do Gooder. Superhero Geek. Feminist. Trekkie. Anglophile. Regrettable Humorist. Atheist. Comic Nerd. Skeptic. Gamer. Agatha Christiean. Horror Habitualist, Rex Stoutist. Lego Maniac. TBA.

Updated: 2017-12-12T04:17:06.166-06:00


Subspace Reviews: Star Trek: Discovery - Ep 7 - "Magic to Make the Sanest Man Go Mad"


Episode seven brings us to a return of an unexpected reoccurring character this season. Harry Mudd.I'm sure he's over that being left to rot on a Klingon prison ship.A return of Mudd, and an episode of this new series which feels surprising like a Classic Trek or Next Generation episode. A dangerous situation. A colorful foe. An internal conflict. The ship on the line. And Lorca gets to die.But no news on what's happen to Cornwell. :(The episode is built around a time loop, instigated by Harry Mudd. We don't learn how he got the technology to pull this off, but that's one of many unanswered questions. But I suppose one might say this is just a TV show and we should really just relax.His plan is to board the Discovery and enact his plot against Lorca. To do this he gets inside a near extinct gormagander (a giant space whale/panda) near the Discovery, knowing it will end up aboard the ship."Okay. No no tell it about the cheddar biscuits. And no one ask it to roll over!"Why it is brought aboard I'll explain shortly. But how Mudd found one is unknown. How he got it into place is unknown. How he knew where the Discovery was is unknown.Many questions. But that isn't a great shock. We have logic jumps in stories, and Mudd can be an annoyingly resourceful man.But we also have many mysteries to this series. Another one, how did Mudd escape the Klingons?Because it is still uncertain what state Mudd's relationship was with the Klingons holding him. He liked to think that he had worked the prison system to his favor. Alternatively, he could have been a paid informant of the Klingons.Another option, is that he was being used. The Klingon's quietly placed the little creature in the cell for Mudd to use, and also spy on the cell. They may also have fed Mudd the information on Lorca's history to color his view of the captain and get him to butt heads with Lorca. He might have been L'Rell's puppet.Or it could be a mix of options. But how did Mudd get out? Did L'Rell let him escape to chase Lorca and a possible bounty? Did she outright make a deal with him? Or, perhaps, Kol did.If this plotting did happen it might explain how Mudd got the animal, as the Klingons may have had access. And with their intel he might have had been given a clue to where the ship would be.It could answer many questions. Or not.Once Mudd accesses the Discovery, he planned to make his presence known, shooting security and other crew. The ship security protocols would go on.And an Andorian space helmet fits in to this...He probably was having a time finding one to fit his wide head.Then, when he was trapped, he would taunt Lorca and let him know he was coming for him.He'll also be messing with the ship's systems and protocols.And then start rooting through the Spore Drive systems, trying to get them to work.But in any situation, he ends his efforts in a singular way......blowing up Discovery.But not to worry. It is all part of the plan. Because then the time loop restarts. 30 minute run, and then you blow up the ship.The idea is to allow Mudd to experiment,  to learn the patterns of security, to break the computer security, to get control of the command functions.And along the way he gets to have fun with Lorca......and snack in various hot spots.But mostly he gets in a lot of practice killing Lorca. Again and again.Eventually, he'll work out all of the ship's tricks and get the Spore Drive under his control.The ship itself was experiencing a normal work day. Well, those working did. Those off duty were having a party. I am guessing it is in part to celebrate Tyler's new position as Security Chief.It's a chance for junior officers to blow off steam, drink, and commiserate. It's not the sort of place Michael Burnham feels comfortable. Everyone is loosened up and expressive, not Burnham's thing.But Tilly is having a great time, playing drinking games, flirting, and trying to get Burnham to have fun to. She is buzzed.They both eye Tyler, and Tilly thinks that Burnham has something for the new officer. And she has admitted some feelings to herself. But, to Tilly, [...]

Subspace Reviews: Star Trek: Discovery - Ep 6 - "Lethe"


Back into Discovery again, and this time we get to know a little more about a popular Vulcan among Trekkies. Sarek.In fact, after seeing this episode I started to build an interesting timeline for the Sarek family between Spock's birth and his entrance to Starfleet Academy based on this episode. But that will have to wait until the midseason break next week. And the rest of these midseason reviews.So let's see who lives and who prospers.The episode finds Burnham and Tilly running through the ship's corridors. They are working out together, mostly to help Tilly sharpen her endurance and time. Burnham has started to try and help train Tilly to get on track to becoming a captain.Burnham feels she needs to shave off over 6 seconds from her time. If she can do that, she gets a commendation. And with that, along with her other skills and achievements, she can get into command school. Along the way, she can get posted to one of the uber cool Constitution Class starships, like Enterprise. It will be straight sailing from there to her own first command.Burnham is focused on getting and keeping Tilly on task. Objective to objective to result.In the weapon's training facility, Lorca and Tyler are working out in a simulator against swarms of Klingons. They move from area to area, clearing out Klingon attackers.As they go, Lorca quizzes Tyler on his history, his family, and his knowledge of geography.They banter back and forth, while sweeping out holographic Klingons.When they've cleared the sim, it returns the room to normal.Now some might think this is too advanced for the time, but it does seem limited. No holograms seemed to be able to touch them, so the room didn't seem to use the more advanced force field projections or massive perspective tricks later holodecks will use. It's a shooting gallery. You pick your hall, or clearing, or cliff edge, and then you shoot and dodge attacks.And as it was, they had wanted to place holodeck on Classic Trek, but it couldn't be budgeted in to work. Though they do appear in the animated series. But that is usually not looked to for too many facts.On the weekends they reset this to play Hogan's Alley. The simulator looks like a good tool. It is far ahead of the portable light target in Enterprise. Or the holodeck floating targets in The Next Generation. But the Starfleet in those shows was in a very different place from the Starfleet in this series. They were young and naive, and older and established, fleets. This Starfleet is knowledgeable enough to worry and not strong enough yet to be overconfident.Lorca keeps checking over Tyler, and wants to be sure he has a good sense of him. Tyler isn't sure what it all means. Then Lorca offers him the position of chief of security aboard the ship. Lorca wants someone he can trust.Tyler accepts.In the Mess, Burnham pushes Tilly to get a properly nutritious meal. Tilly decides to scope out the new guy, Tyler. She finds him interesting. Rumor is that he took out 6 Klingons. But Burnham says that isn't likely.But Tilly wants to go meet him.Tilly sits and starts talking to him, which is her special skill. She then pushes Burnham to be friendly.She seems to notice something between the 2 of them. Tilly likes to play matchmaker.Tyler tells Burnham that he doesn't judge her for what happen at the Binary Stars, as he hasn't gotten to know her yet. But he respects that she wants to serve.But the conversation doesn't go far as Burnham's head starts to spin. She feels a sharp pain in her side, and she stumbles away.She is shocked to see Sarek there, lying in a pool of his own blood.She then finds herself in her mind and then on some higher plane. It pushes her out...somewhere.It is a bit trippy and all. But Vulcans and there special connections and abilities are well known. We've seen them employ different tricks, like reaching someone's mind through a wall (Spock). And in Classic Trek, when a Starfleet vessel crewed only by Vulcans was lost with all hands, Spock felt it across space. Vulcans do some odd and cool stuff.Also, Star T[...]

Subspace Reviews: Star Trek: Discovery - Ep 5 - "Choose Your Pain"


We get a simpler title this time around, and am I the only one that feels this could be a song title for a heavy metal song? Come on, you can't imagine Saru and Burnham fronting a band, with Lorca in back on the drums in a glam rock wig? I can't be the only one that could imagine that.As I'm a little behind on reviews, I decided to hold off on watching new episodes, so I am not too far ahead as I review. So I haven't seen episode 8 yet. So I have to hurry up, as I know I am missing some good stuff. Now, if only my Internet service will give me enough bandwidth to write, save, and have twitter open...We return to Discovery having now successfully implemented the Spore Drive technology. This ship can jump anywhere instantly. And in a war, being where you're needed at a moments notice is quite the boon.Ooo.  New tech. New place. It is a bit different for a Starfleet starbase, but that is partly the orientation, I hope see more of it later on.Lorca has been called in by the admirals to talk strategy and planning for the future of the Spore Drive, and the war effort. He is quite proud of  what he has been accomplishing. Klingon supply lines destroyed, aiding Benzar. Routing enemy attack at places the Klingons thought would allow them to push deeper into Federation space.But the admiralty has bigger issues. They need more Spore Drives on more ships.One science ship leading the fight is risky. It could be lost. The technology could get taxed, and fail at a desperate moment. They need time to get more ships like the Discovery.And while they are starting to build more drives, they have only a single tardegrade creature. Starfleet is scouring space for more, but is having no luck.So Admiral Cornwell wants Lorca to back off for a while. They want the ship to have a lower profile in the war, until they know more ships are coming.She's also worried, with this series of surprise Federation victories, that the Klingons are becoming aware of Discovery, or even know what it is.Lorca is indignant. He thinks he and his ship should be pushing their advantage as hard as they can, and as deeply as they can. If they have the tool, use it.Later, Cornwell talks more with Lorca. He needs to listen to Starfleet.She also clearly has some history with Lorca. She chastises him for not just getting his eyes fixed, and he chides her back that he just hates doctors. (She is a Starfleet doctor who has risen to be an admiral.)He is annoyed that it seems he was railroaded with his new orders. But she says he needs to show some restraint, as she is holding back.Cornwell brings up Burnham. A lot of Starfleet is pissed that she isn't rotting on a penal colony. It feels, to some, she escaped justice for starting a war. Cornwell isn't as angry about that, but more that Lorca just quietly giving her a post on his ship, vital to the war effort.Lorca is firm about the power he has been given by the higher higher ups at Starfleet. He gets to run the ship his way, no interference. And Starfleet already allows a wide latitude when it comes to captains who wish to assign new crew in a time of war.Cornwell just points out that Lorca's history already puts strikes against him being in command. He doesn't need to start adding more of his own.So Lorca heads back to Discovery.But mid trip, and in Federation space, a Klingon D-7 battlecruiser appears overhead. And, at first I though it looked a bit different but might be close to the classic Klingon ship design. But no. It has the big red circle area on it (Somewhere, still hard to read the shape of the ship.). But it looks like it's a sensor dish instead of the weapons platform. And it seems to be on the bottom of the ship, and not on the front side. There are some familiar bits to the ship, but it still quite different.The shapes stay so mysterious on the viewer's end. And since it's Trek, I feel like I should just know these ships, so it gets a little frustrating to know I am largely clueless.They ship tractors in Lorca's shuttle. And he and the pilot prepa[...]

Subspace Reviews: Star Trek: Discovery - Ep 4 "The Butcher's Knife Cares Not For the Lamb's Cry"


Wow. That's a title, isn't it? Reminds you of some of the titles from Classic Trek, that funneled their way into later series on occasion. But for what the crew of the Discovery are working against in this episode, it is rather apt.Welcome back to my Subspace Reviews. I do apologize for these starting up again so late. But it has been the glorious Halloween season, and for that time, if I'm not ahead of schedule, some things end up being delayed.But it is time to return to the Trek Sector of space to find out if the Spore Drive can finally be successfully implemented to take the crew places never gone to before.This episode continues with what seems to be the central story of this season of Star Trek: Discovery. The Fall and Rise of Michael Burnham. She's reached her lowest point, disgraced and jailed. Now she's been offered a path to some form of redemption."Six seasons and a movie. Six seasons and a movie..."It's just neither she nor us know where that path will be taking her.As well, she's not sure who she is anymore. When she discovers that Captain Georgiou has left her something personal in her will, it troubles her. It was something Georgiou decided on well before Burnham had mutinied and been courtmartialed. So it's a stark reminder of who she was, who Georgiou saw her as, just as she's trying to work out who she is now."I. Am. Your Singing Tillygram! Your Singing Tillygrame!"What she does know is that she's been given duty in the science division on Discovery. Temporary duty. And she wants to make the most of it.And not everyone is pleased with this. Saru was not told about her transfer until now. It troubles him as it's another thing that the captain is doing and deciding without any conversation with him.Also, his threat ganglia is provoked (I mentioned them last review.) by being with Burnham again. But she wants him to know that she just wants to keep her head down and work. No surprises.This early scenes also give us an interesting moment where it looks like were seeing a strange world. But it is actually the synthesizing process for building a uniform. It's interesting to see this process from the molecular view.When Saru and Burnham arrive on the bridge they see the bridge crew in the midst of a Red Alert. The ship is under attack by a wing of Birds of Prey.This is a simulation, but Captain Lorca is angrily trying to get the bridge crew to beef up their reaction times and accuracy.It seems he is playing out scenarios where they make use of the Spore Drive to appear in the midst of Klingon ships, and then quickly take them out.But the results are dreadful. They take out one Klingon ship. But before they can handle another, they are hit and destroyed. Discovery is a science vessel, so it isn't built to dish out or take a lot of damage. So they need to take every advantage they can to win a fight.So Lorca is pissed. He needs better...if they every get the Spore Drive to work.It is nice now to also get a better look at the bridge crew. I hope we get to see and know more about them as the series continues. Though as this show is following a non-bridge officer, the show may never go there.Still, it is nice to Lt. Keyla Detmer again. And the interesting mix of people that run the ship.For now, Lorca has other issues to focus on. He takes Burnham with him. They gi down to his secure lab. This is the lab we saw at the end of the last episode, with the bones, weapons, and other creepy oddities.A lot of us wondered if this was going to be some big dark secret of Lorca's. If this would be hidden and revealed later in the series. That it might hide some dark truth.Next episode, he's showing it off to Burnham. So, no. It's not a dark secret. It's not proof that Lorca is secretly evil. He wants to understand and master war, so he can end this war. He wants to find some trick that will do the job.It reminds me slightly of the command officers in WWII who would replicate the offices of Nazi leadership, to try and get in the mind of the e[...]

The Horror Of...Halloween Night, The Houses October Built, In Short


October is coming to a close. The Halloween season is now at it's grand horizon. And tonight will be the last night for most all haunted houses to be visited.It is always a sad sight in the days after Halloween to see the festivities out by the curb. It's almost as painful as the mid-October shift in stores to Christmas.But this day is here, and we are can live it. Enjoy it. Be terrified by what we like, be it house, or kid at the door, or movie we enjoy.So let's head into...The Houses October Built.'The film is something of a labor of love by Bobby Roe and Zack Andrews. They were both interested in getting a horror film made on their own terms. They like the idea of a documentary/found footage look to the film, to help blur lines between real and fake. When they started work on this movie, found footage hadn't yet exploded to where it is now.They wanted an insular quality to the film, with a group of friends crammed together, heading into a darkness they didn't really understand. The characters are eager for an extreme haunting experience. An experience beyond what others get to have. So they push to get a mysterious and hidden group to let them in on the ride.And some of them might survive it.The film acts as a documentary of sorts. It is treated as if it has been put together from all the video taken during the film.A portion of this film follows them meeting and interviewing people who work and run haunted houses around South Central United States.And many of these interviews are real. They met and talked with people working at these places, getting their stories. So we get in on some real experiences.And some of it was planned.That is an interesting aspect to this film. What are the real dark stories of the Haunt world? And what are ones made for the film? And how many of the real ones are more than tall tales?The reality of the film  is blurred.More so, it is blurred as the cast of leads is mostly made of guys who know each other, and weren't all regular actors. So they at least had preexisting chemistry.The one that stand out on this is Brandy, played by Brandy Schaefer. She is a professional actress, and was hired to work with the guys. She adds a needed extra layers of personality, friendliness, and non-Bro-ity. Without her there, the guys would grow to be a bit obnoxious to watch.Hanging out with them for awhile before filming helped her establish chemistry with the rest of the cast.The group is heading out across the region together to film a look at "Haunts". They want to look and talk to people about them. And then they want to chase down the extreme ones. The really extreme ones. Something that will shake even the most jaded horror fan.I don't entirely get it. A scare is nice. But put yourself at risk is just ridiculous.It is summed nicely for me by one interview in the film. He is draped over his significant other. He jokes about she is fine with the Haunt they are at. But not him. Oh, no. He wants something where they get in your face and then shove.It reminds me of the guys that tell you how they would handle a robbery, about all there moves. It is all talk. There is an unknown when you walk into a fly by night Haunt. But seeking people that will whip a bull machete near your head, is begging for someone to get seriously hurt. And for what? I am not clear.As they go they will film it all, even in the RV they're sharing. And unlike some films where the camera seems like  an outsider, it is shared among them. They all have agreed on what they want to do, and treat it as part of there fun in the haunted houses. As they move along it is mostly about them sharing this adventure.So they go from Haunt to Haunt, seeing what is being offered,They have fun, and some jumps. They interview. And they step on some toes, as they try to sneak around, and take video in places they are warned off from.But the range of experiences out there is nice to see. (Not all of them, but most are.)So this is, by an[...]

The Horror Of...Halloween Night, Tales of Halloween (2016), In Short


Halloween is finally here! Let's party.But maybe it's not time for that, or maybe you just need your horror fix to continue. So what will we watch. Something about Halloween, obviously. But what to pick?So hard to choose. So let's go buffet on this. Let's go anthology film. So...Tales of Halloween.Tales of Halloween is a film from a collection of directors and writers. All of the tales take place in the same town on the same Halloween night. It's an offering of a range of horror tales that often have twists and turns that are dark, and sometimes strange.We are brought TEN tales in this film. So it just doesn't seem feasible to start listing and describing them all. (Perhaps I'll break the movie segments down sometime, like another Halloween.) So let's look at the title screen the film gave us near it's start.So we have ten stories over two hours. That is interesting to me. Usually when I see an anthology film it limits itself to four tales. So you can have up to half an hour for each tale. But with this breakdown, we are looking at shorter tales that are around ten minutes each, on average.That calls for an economy of storytelling. Quick tales. Tight tales. Just like a good story you tell by the fire. (It also means that the stories are hopefully brief enough that you won't get bored in them if one doesn't work for you.)But I do love having this wide range of tales, as it gives me a grab bag of options. It's like a bulging Halloween bucket, full of candy and promise. You can stick your hand in and see what you get. Enjoy the experience and adventure!So let's talk about what these tales are made of.The film's wraparound is built to be a strange and visually striking popup book world. The city is largely flat. But places do pop up, and beings, vehicles, and weather move around overhead. It's quite dynamic and fun, offering a playful sense to these dark and macabre tales. I enjoy when these things mix well.To tie these tales together, we have the local radio station, and a DJ on the air this Halloween.The DJ is played by Adrienne Barbeau. She is more of an ethereal character, momentarily appearing at the film's start. She then is a voice that is threaded into the film at certain points. She sometimes will take you into one story, or out of another.It acts as a fun and instantly recognizable homage to The Fog, where she also played a radio DJ.And being a Halloween film, you know there's a love and respect for John Carpenter's work. If you watch through all the tales, you can pull out numerous little shout outs to him.And these tales had some surprising impacts on me. For instance, after a couple of them, where candy givers were stabbed by kids in costumes, I started to get worried. Should I...Should I be afraid of these kids coming to my door tonight?It's never occured to me before...But...Can I trust these kids?Any kid that comes to my door?"I'm hewe to swawow youw souw."I just love that the film was able to mess with me a bit.And this film is full of monsters.The supernatural type. The X-Filey type.And some actual GMO monstrosities.But the film does not leave out the far too human monsters along the way.You can decide who you find the more unsettling.And the range of conflicts take us from fights of families and fights within the community.Along the way there will be spots and characters that will pop up over and over again, helping to further tie together this world.As well, we have Romero's Night of the Living Dead. You can see the film playing in homes throughout the tales, it helps to show far apart in time each of your Halloween terrors are separated.Thinking of back on everything happening this night, this town is certainly going to look interesting come morning. But at least you can go to the credits, and move on to other chilling tales on your Halloween.I hope Tales of Halloween finds a spot in your list of To Watch films this Halloween. How else will you lear[...]

The Horror Of...Halloween Night, Hellraiser (1987)


There are many gory horror movies and movie series out there. Some go for the ridiculous. Some go for the ongoing dread. Some are just about throwing some blood around.And then you have films that take you to another world. Where gore is the beginning of an exploration. Where it acts as a portal for beings outside our understanding.All you need to do to meet them is...solve the puzzle.It's time to solve accept the challenge, welcome the suffering, and see if we can come out sane on the other side of...Hellraiser.The film is the creation of horror writing great Clive Barker, who wrote and directed this movie. It was his first major film.It's an adaptation of The Hellbound Heart, which he also wrote. The move from book to film offers many changes. Some were ones he had pushed on the film by censors and studio, but others are his willing changes for the sake of adaptation.The changes, in part, soften some of the stories edges a bit. That may annoy some viewers, but I don't mind having a little easier time starting with a clearer protagonist for the story. It helps give the character in the film, and in other appearances, more of an arc.But this film is still filled with gory and gruesome images, moments, and scenes. It was a film that took me time to actually see through and appreciate. So it is definitely not for everyone, particularly with it's key facet of body horror.But that is one of the things you go to Clive Barker for.As the film opens we see a man meeting with merchant in some open air cafe. They are coming to a deal on an item. An odd little box."I swear, if this is another Squirtle..."This is Frank Cotton. He's a man who's happily hedonistic. His pleasure. His joy. His needs. These are the things that drive this man. No one will stand in his way.And now he seeks the ultimate pleasure. And he's been told this box is the answer. Solve the puzzle of the box. And untold experiences will find you.As he works the box, it opens to him. The environment around him slowly changes.The more he manipulates it, the more the world shifts.And then he's done. And that experience finds him. Chained hooks fly out of the darkness, snagging and gouging him.Then they tear him apart.And a figure overlooks it's work.Some time later, Larry and Julia Cotton (Andrew Robinson and Clare Higgins) move into the old family home, which Frank had been living in.They have a strained and troubled marriage. Julia is Larry's second wife, and since their marriage they've had trouble. Much of this stems from Frank who had a torrid affair with Julia. It seems like a dark experience that has left a mark on Julia.She still thinks of him. She's haunted by him.Larry has a daughter from his first marriage. Kirsty Cotton (Ashley Laurence). She loves her dad, but has chosen to not live with them in the house. But she's eager to stay in her dad's life.While the couple moves into the house, Larry is accidentally gashed, spilling quite a bit of blood. The blood lands on the floor where Frank was when he was taken and torn asunder.And after a time, Frank slowly returns. Bit by bit he reforms. Not completely, but he is alive and in agony.He soon finds Julia, and he begs her to help him. He needs something to become whole again. Blood. Lots of blood. Blood from a living person.So, drawn into his world again, Julia begins luring men to the house. And then she strikes.She is stunned at first by what she is doing. But she slowly embraces her role.And Frank slowly returns to some semblance of himself.He is almost back to normal, but lacks his skin, and little more life essence.He explains that he sought the puzzle box to received the ultimate sensual experience. But it proved to be the most extreme sadistic experience.The box opens the portal to let strange forces take you away.Kristy stumbles in on them, and ends up stealing the puzzle box.In shock, Kristy is taken to a hospital. While there she decides to [...]

The Horror Of...Halloween Night, Dracula: In The Company Of Monsters - An Introduction


It's a cold and rainy day, and sometimes you need more than a good film or show to bolster your Halloween and macabre sensibility. Sometimes, you just want a good read. A tome not so much of forgotten lore, but of enjoyable horror.And if you need an interesting read, as you enter this new week, try one of the many tales of Dracula tales made into a comic. A mix of dark words, dark deeds, and striking imagery.Dracula: In The Company Of Monsters.Published by BOOM! Studios in 2011, this tale takes us into a strange twist in the unlife of Dracula. is he the most evil force to face? This story challenges that idea.This ongoing tale was created by Kurt Busiek (Astro City, Action Comics, Superman, Avengers, Conan, ). It's co-written by Daryl Gregory. It's illustrated by Scott Godlewski. Colors were done by Stephen Downer. And lettering was done by Johnny Lowe.It is a 12 issue series that spans an epic struggle between forces beyond most of our reaches. It has since been collected into 3 volumes.For now, I want to introduce you to this world, and the forces that will soon be pitted against each other for power, and survival. When we come back, we'll go through Volume 1.So for now, let's reveal a SPOILER from the book. It is largely about Dracula. I know!We get to see many key moments, legendary moments, from his life (and more the life of the actual Vlad Tepes/Vlad III of Wallachia, Vlad the Impaler, Vlad Dracula).Victories.Deaths.And death.We also see the steps towards the Dracula we all know so well. And, as well, the type of man he was. He is one that will not bow to any man, god, or any power..He will exist, and continue to do so only on his own terms.In the present, we look to Barrington Industries. It is a powerful company, but an ailing one. Everyone is scared that it is on it's last legs. Many terrified they will be gone in the next round of layoffs.Not all though. Evan Barrington. He is the great nephew of the owner of the company. (Also, the son of the chair of the board.) So he's family. And this is a family company.But Evan is a troubled man. He has just hovered in his life. In school and work, nothing has thrilled or excited him. He just moves along, knowing he was a Barrington.But now his uncle has entrusted to him a strange mission, one he can't explain to others, and that he also doesn't really understand.He has had to study and master a series of ancient languages, then he's studied one ancient text after another. Most of it has had to do with Vlad Tepes. But other bits have been strange rituals and incantations.It is all fascinating to Evan, learning more and more about this historic, but largely forgotten figure. He is impressed by him, as a long dead figure from the distant past who he'll never have to meet.And now his uncle, Conrad Barrington, beckons.His uncle takes him on a mystery trip. Evan thinks his uncle has gone over the deep end, chasing magic and myth that will get them no where.And it is a deep deep end.But when they go down where his uncle has taken them. They find something Evan did not expect.A skeleton encased in a strange honey concotion.The remains of Vlad Tepes.Dracula.And the main players ready to take the stage. An arrogant, gluttonous, and ancient vampire. An old lumbering corporation. And an arrogant, greedy, and aging man of wealth, power, and privilege. Who is the most vile? Who is the most twisted? Who is the most entrenched? Who will exploit who? And which of these, if any, will rule the day?Plenty of issues left to reveal it all. A dark read for this Halloween.[...]

The Horror Of...Halloween Night, Star Trek - "Catspaw", In Short


As the last weekend of Halloween comes to an end, we need something comfy. Particularly if where you are is cold right now, we need a mug of something and some good old fun to snuggle up with under a blanket.So let's set a course, and go to warp. It's time for some Star Trek.And let's take a look at the Star Trek franchise's only holiday episode. And it's a Halloween one.Star Trek - "Catspaw"I only noticed this recently. This episode of second season Trek ended up being moved back so it would abut Halloween in 1967. October 27. Hey, it's closer to being on mark than any of the shows I've covered that end up being shown in November.The episode opens with the starship Enterprise in orbit of Pyris II. It is an uninhabited world. Scotty, Sulu, and Crewman Jackson have been sent down to survey.But Kirk grows concerned as the away team misses a call in. They try to contact them, but have no luck.Finally, Jackson contacts them. Something is off though. He wants to be beamed up, but won't explain why, or where the others are.They beam him up.And Jackson immediately collapses on the pad. Doctor McCoy checks him, but finds that he is dead.Then a booming voice emanates from him. It says the ship is now cursed. And they must all leave now, or die.Kirk isn't going to take that. So he, Spock, and McCoy beam down to find the missing crew members.Up on the ship Assistant Chief Engineer DeSalle is in charge. And Chekov is...Chekov? What's the deal with that wig? Now that's this episodes real horror."There's no place for comical wigs on the bridge, ensign."This was the first filmed episode with Chekov. But as it was shown later, his later work was shown earlier.The world is as desolate and craggy as expected. But they also find that it is foggy. The environment of the planet should not make that possible.And then they hear a howling and a wailing. Three spectral figures appear. They wail and rhyme, warning Kirk to stay away and flee.They cackle and disappear when they are done. (They really make you think of the Three Witches.)And when I was a little kid, watching reruns of Trek, this was the moment I bolted out of the room. The makeup and voice work was all it took me as a kid to jump and run. They portrait that iconic Halloween witchiness.Spock notes that nothing they are seeing is real.But a wind rises from nowhere, and pushes them back, and McCoy wonders how things that aren't real can be affecting them so.As they make there way, they spot a massive castle in the distance. And it looks great. That is a perfect creepy castle, shrouded in darkness.Inside they find dusty walls, cobwebs, and torch lit hallways.They are met by a black cat that...acts like a normal cat. Right? We all on board with that analysis?They try to proceed through the castle, when the floor gives under them. They are left unconscious.The cat approves.They all awaken to find themselves chained in a dungeon, with skeletons on the wall to boot.Soon they find Scotty and Sulu arrive. But they are not themselves, mindless and under the control of another.They are taken to meet their captors. Korob and Sylvia. They are powerful being that have taken this world as there home. They evade questions about who they are and how their powers work.Magic? Science? Eh?But they are powerful. Able to make effigies of the Enterprise, with which they can threaten it's safety. Or lock it away from the universe.The cat can also get a whole lot more annoying and interesting.Strange almost all powerful beings on a spooky world? Creepy castle? Black cat? Witches? Ghosts? Seeming magic?As Kirk says,"If we weren't missing two officers, and a third man dead, I would say someone was playing an elaborate Trick-or-Treat on us."The beings are tying in to the things that scare us, as humans. Though as 23rd century people, you might think something more futuristic might be in there. Bu[...]

The Horror Of...Halloween Night, Re-Animator (1985), In Short


Sadly, we are heading into the final weekend of our Halloween fun. So it's time to get in what gore and horror we can, hmm?So let's return yet again to the 80's with a gory comedic classic. One of the Brian Yunza and Stuart Gordon twisted jaunts. A bit of the old Jeffrey Combs that make carnivorous entrails smile.Re-Animator.This is the tale has partly told by H.P. Lovecraft. It deviates in many ways, but most all retelling of Lovecraft's work seems to take wide deviations from the original tales. It seems difficult to fully translate his work.But we return to the Lovecraftian alma mater of Miskatonic University, in comfy old Arkham, Massachusetts.Home of the Fightin' Fishmen.A new third year med student has arrived from studies overseas. Herbert West (Jeffrey Combs the Great). He has been studied death and the limits of life. And he's developed and expanded the field privately in his quest to master it."Hey, Dr. Hill? I know where you can go shove this pencil, and you ideas."And then we have his soon to be roommate and research assistant. Dan Cain (Bruce Abbott of The Last Starfighter, Bride of Re-Animator, Black Scorpion, The Prophecy 2, etc.). He is a dedicated student, trying to master his field and be the best he can be.And along with Herbert he'll have all sorts of wacky adventures.And just laugh about it all.Dan is dating Megan Halsey (Barbara Crampton the Wonderful - Oh, so many great horror films to her name that I must cover down the road.). She's also the daughter of the dean of the medical school, so spends a good deal of time around the hospital they work in.She seems to have generally positive view of the people around her. But Herbert West instantly creeps her out. Everything about him seems off. He can't be trusted, in Megan's eyes.And then there's Dr. Carl Hill (David Gale of Guyver, Bride of Re-Animator, Tales from the Darkside, etc.). The esteemed and revered figure at the medical school. He shares common interest in field of study of Herbert West. He is a cold and arrogant man. He also lusts after Megan.Both West and Hill have a lot in common. The difference I see is that Herbert West just wants to expand his understanding of death and life. Knowledge for knowledge. Carl Hill wants this knowledge to, but to make himself more revered, and more powerful. He wants knowledge for control.And in there common quest they have a meeting of minds.But things come to a head."Herberr? You aren't planning to knock my head of are you?" "...No."Then you've got that beautiful glowing serum of Herbert West's creation. The reanimating agent. An injection of it will bring a body, or a limb, to life. And, oddly, they never seem happy to be back.But when you see it come out, you know things are about to get worse.And the dead are going to rise, in all manner of ways.All manner of ways.This is one of the early gory movies I came across and actually watched all the way through. And as I've mentioned before, early means somewhat later in life. The gore of this movie works so well because it is over the top. It is mad.Strange walking cadavers. Snarling heads. Intestinal tentacles. It's ridiculous and amazing to watch.But I can't forget to give some respect to the smartest character in this movie. The medical school security guard, Mace. He isn't afraid to pull out the gun when things are weird. And when things get super insane, he turns and gets out to call for help. That is how you survive this kind of story.So if you want your Halloween to have gore, black comedy, and a bit of Jeffrey Combs. This is a great choice to add to your Halloween marathon.But watch out for when West gets this look.Cause it means he just got a crazy idea.[...]

The Horror Of...Halloween Night, Ghostwatch (1992)


Back before the now that doesn't seem real...A world of fake news, and utterly ridiculous presidents...We had, in some ways, a simpler time...A time when we assumed the news and networks wouldn't screw with us...That seeing was believing...Perhaps this was naive...But it was.Today, we have Reality TV. Today, we have Reality TV presidents. The circle is complete. But let's go back to a Halloween when the veil between the naivety of the past and the madness of the future was breached for just one night...Ghostwatch.Oh, yes. Ghostwatch. The show they only showed once on the BBC. The show that brought in 10's of thousands of angry calls in the hour after it aired. The show that cruelly robbed a nation of their innate faith in...Ah, well. Let's take a look at this.This show was originally proposed by Stephen Volk. He had an idea for an interesting new series the BBC could run. It would start with a season/series of a show following some paranormal investigators going to paranormal hot spots in a North London council estate (It isn't clear how real he wanted this show to look, but I would bet he wanted it to feel genuine.). The final episode would be a live show, where they investigate a "real" haunted house.The idea was pared down to just that last episode. The live broadcast of the goings on of a paranormally besieged family. Live. Halloween night. 1992. A scary little play of a BBC investigation of the paranormal that goes horribly wrong.But this teleplay would be played straight. BBC regulars and crew. No nods to it being fake as the show progresses. Everyone in the cast commits. And the results...we will talk about further down.The cast is led by Michael Parkinson, a respected host in English television. He anchors the show from the studio, where he guides the audience, keeps orders, and converses with guests and the infield presenters.He is a serious individual, known for being in general proper. No reason to believe he'd play a trick on the public, or play a part in something not completely above board.Interviewing people outside the haunted house is Craig Charles, who is best known for his role on Red Dwarf. But he also was a frequent face on kid's TV in the 90's. So it wasn't too surprising to see him doing more special shows with the BBC.He is there to add humorous notes, get information from locals, and add additional perspectives from near the home being investigated,And then we have Sarah Greene. She's interviewing and investigating inside the home. She's talking with the mother and children in the home. She's drawing out information from them, and also giving them some support. At the time she also was doing a lot of work presenting on kid's shows (like Blue Peter and Saturday Superstore), so she also was not some red flag to see on this.They and others all looked and felt the part. It would be just another documentary special.The show was trying in many ways to emulated Orson Welle's radio broadcast of The War of the Worlds, which went out October 30th, 1938. It also was a teleplay that strived to play out realistically.Volk's idea was that horror movies were becoming too predictable. People going to movies agree to be scared, and know what to expect. But TV was extra safe. Comfortable. He wanted to throw people's expectations out of the window. A level of reality that would blur the lines a bit. He didn't want there to be any clue that something unexpected might be coming the audiences way.For Volk, it was to be something you could get lost in as you were drawn into the unfolding drama. Things could get tenser and tenser. Then the shocking end...And then there'd be an ad break before the next show.Conceptually, I can appreciate this. But in reality it is a bit much to screw with audiences to that extent. Today we have a definite negative view[...]

The Horror Of...Halloween Night, Ash Vs Evil Dead Season 1


One way to enjoy your Halloween is to have traditions. Sometimes it's a place, or a food. Sometimes it's one or more movies. A good horror series also makes for a nice tradition, particularly if it's one you can binge on windy nights.And among the recent new series that could prove worthwhile to you is...Ash Vs Evil Dead.The series is a continuation of sorts to the Evil Dead movie series. Hey, they never properly sync up as it is, so more or less. We return to the life and times of Ashley Williams. Stock clerk subpar, demon destroyer extraordinaire.The series is the creation of Sam Raimi, Ivan Raimi, and Tom Spezialy. It returns us to Ash's life 30 some years since the Evil Dead movies. Ash is getting older. But the past still haunts him. The deaths of all those around him in those films, including friends, family, and loved ones haunt him. So he tries to run as hard as he can from the reality that hangs around his neck.So the joker, who grew more goofy every movie is a survivor who's mind is doing what it can to stay intact.So sex, booze, drugs, and groovy music.But it all makes him look like something of a sad old fool.Not that Ash cares. Life is good, for now.But, as always, the Deadites don't stay away. And they give him a warning. They are coming for him.And now Ash is freaking out. The fun is over. He has to run.He runs and finds the book just where he left it. It's relief since that means no ones gone and read from it again.But then his mind flashes back to a drunken drug filled night he spent with a young lady. To impress her, he showed her the book. In his addled state, he got her to read some passages from it.So, yeah. He's fucked up again.Elsewhere in the state. State trooper is checking a disturbance with her partner. Amanda Fisher is trying to take it slow and easy as they check out the dark house out in the woods.They find the occupant, who twists her head around to talk to them.It attacks them, killing her partner. She manages to shoot it in the head. But then her partner pops up and starts to taunt and attack her.She's forced to kill him.And this leads to her being put on leave. Many of her fellow officers think she snapped and killed her partner.She just doesn't know what happened. And she keeps seeing people who's faces change on her. She's worried she might be going mad.But she meets up with Ruby, a mysterious woman who seems to know a lot about this stuff. She explains that it is a real. And it is all the fault of Ashley Williams.Ruby is a piece of work. Focused. Cool. Deadly to Deadites.Back in Ash's life, he's trying to skip town fast. He wants to figure out the book, turn it off again, and not have to fight the Deadites ever again.So he's hoping to get paid early, and skip out on work. But the boss says no.At work, he has one ally. Pablo Simon Bolivar. He is an eager fan of Ash, believing he is special, somehow. He covers for Ash, bails him out, and gives him encouragement.New to the store is Kelly Maxwell. She's a neighbor of Pablo who he helped get the job. She is completely unimpressed with Ash and his Ashiness.But soon they will have to rely on each other as Deadite troubles arise and chase them down. When the chips are down, Ash the hero comes out, and Pablo has his faith proven and Kelly sees what he can actually accomplish.But the key to doing Evil Dead stories in movie and TV is one thing (comedy is great, but it was never an absolute). Gore and horror.And this series brings it weird and wild.Thankfully this is a cable series so we see terrible things, and the blood is everywhere.And you need death. Death is pervasive in the series. Ash and the gang are trying to save the world (and themselves), but the cost is high. Damn high.But if you want HOURS of new fresh Evil Dead fun and terror this Hall[...]

The Horror Of...Halloween Night, Agatha Christie's Poirot - Hallowe'en Party, Mystery By Night


Halloween is ever a time of spooks and goblins. Even the pranksters and the tricksters love to come out to play. But sometimes, the murderers also get out. And we cannot have that, can we?At times like that you want the sharpest minds and eyes at work. Through the falling leaves, the rapid dusk, and along the forgotten paths, the sleuths will make things right.So today let's enjoy the efforts of one such sleuth. Hercule Poirot. Drawn out in the wake of a Halloween tragedy in...Agatha Christie's "Hallowe'en Party".But to start let's look at the opening credits of the show. They weren't still in use when this episode was made, but I've always enjoyed them and they help slip you into this period in history. allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="315" src="" width="560">We open on a night so perfect for Halloween. Dark, windy, with lightning and rain in the air. Not perfect for going out to Trick or Treat, but fine for a children's party.And the house is a buzz with kids running around, and enjoying the fun being put on by the adults, and have they are finding for themselves. The adults just try and catch their breaths, trying to supervise the rambunctious lot all.Among them is Ariadne Oliver, famed mystery writer and friend to one Hercule Poirot. She is not enjoying the experience at all. She was visiting to give a lecture, but now she's been dragged into a children's party, and she is coming down with a dreadful cold.She is being put to use aggressively by Ms. Rowena Drake, who owns the large home being used for the party. Ariadne is being assisted by Ms. Judith Butler, who is also hosting Ariadne while she is in the area.The cold she has is likely something she picked up from Miranda, Butler's daughter. She isn't at the party as she is still in bed, recovering from her illnessDespite all of this,Ariadne is trying to keep herself going, as the night runs on. Even enjoying the apples brought in for a game of Bobbing for Apples later in the night. (Really, folks. Do kids today still get to do this? Did it continue passed my youth? I must know.)And the place has a collection of guests, including the children and their parents. They also have the requisite vicar and local school teacher in attendance.As the night goes on, Ms. Drake is trying to get her kids spurred to help out with the young ones. Frances is enjoying some drinks and Edmund is obsessively reading some Poe.Games are played and stories are told. And the apple bobbing.But in the background Mrs. Reynolds is puttering around, trying to clean up and feel useful. She can't keep still, feeling ill at ease."No. I don't want to read the fan fiction you wrote based on my books."In the midst of the frivolity, a young girl starts a conversation with Ariadne. A excitable and awkward girl named Joyce Reynolds. She asks about her writing, her foreign detective character, her money, etc.Then she announces that she once saw a murder when she was young. No one believes her. And then people start taunting her.She wants to be taken seriously, but the adults try to change the subject. Her brother, Leopold, suggests she is a liar.Meanwhile, in London Hercule Poirot is trying to enjoy a quiet night. But the radio is playing out a macabre tale. It doesn't amuse Poirot. He lectures his valet that with the evil in the world, it is wrong to make light of death and murder. He's seen and experienced death enough to know it shouldn't be seen as fun.Poirot reminds him that in Belgium this is the time of the year you light candles and remember those that you have lost. It's not a time of frivolity.Back at the party the games and frivolity continue.Then, suddenly, a witch bursts in the house, eager to read the fortunes of those [...]

The Horror Of...Halloween Night, Vampire (1979), In Short


It's time to delve back into TV movies for some more early 80's horror. And what better to mess with than more vampires.And, hey, this time it is perfectly named movie, with no confusion whatsoever.Vampire.But not to worry, when it was first shown in October of 1979 (Hey, what a great time for a movie like this!) it had an ad and opening that helped make it look like a torrid romance...Oh, ad people. allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="315" src="" width="560">The film opens with the ceremony celebrating the start of work on a new church in San Francisco. St. Sebastian.The parish is pleased at the progress and they also thank the team that has been working on this and the larger area project, John Rawlins (Jason Miller, of The Exorcist and The Exorcist III). Leslie Rawlins (Kathryn Harrold).Also present is a retired cop, Harry Kilcoyne (E. G. Marshall, he played the president in Superman II).He notes an odd geographic feature. Where the shadow of the cross put up fell, the ground is scorched. Weird.And then that night our vampire (Richard Lynch, of way too many movies and TV shows to list. But he plays a great and menacing villain.) rises. It's been awakened by the work done.Later, the Rawlins are throwing a party. Their old friend Nicole DeCamp (Jessica Walker of...Wait, she voiced Fran on Dinosaurs? How am I just noticing that now...) comes by and raves about her new boyfriend, who is both mysterious and amazing. Anton Voytek (Richard Lynch again.).She introduced Leslie to him, and he is alluring at first meet. He then talks about a rare sketch they own, and the history behind it. He is quite knowledgeable about the period in time.Anton then greets John, and asks if he can talk to him. He has an amazing opportunity. And wants John to work on it with him.Nicole later explains to the couple that, decades back, Anton's family bought the land the church is using now. They had shipped over a trove of art treasures, then had a vault built on the land to secure them. But WWII kept them from traveling over. So the trove has been lost for a generation. Anton just wants the trove back. Money is no object.She has a list of items, and many are rare or lost works that have historic value.It takes time, but finally the spot to access the art is found. And they begin pulling it out to catalog. But Leslie and her friends begin noting a pattern. All these works were at some point stolen in history.The couple doesn't know what to so, but the police step in. And they detain Anton. And Anton blames John Rawlins.He's looked in a cell, and starts scaring his cellmates. Then he starts tearing the bars open, in a panic. But Nicole arrives to pay his bail.He has no time to talk, with the sun rises. He runs across town to get home to his coffin.Now Anton is pissed. Nicole insists to John that the trove is so amazing that the law and government are overreacting, and it will all be smoothed over. But Anton is pissed.Soon Leslie is found dead, drained of all her blood. ...Anton is a vampire, if you haven't worked it out yet.John Rawlins is distraught. He knows Anton targeted them, but he also has an alibi. So he tracks and tries to figure out Anton. His obsession only alienates him.Finally, his actions get him sent to a hospital. And then Anton comes for him, full vampire.Oh, hey. Dracula cape. Vampires love to don that Dracula cape, even if it's only for one scene in the movie.He gloats to John, and readies to rip his throat out. But Harry, the retired cop, arrives just in time. He pulls a crucifix and Anton flees.The old cop gets John out of the hospital and explains what is happening.Back in 1946, a series of murders occurred. People drained of all t[...]

The Horror Of...Halloween Night, Stan Against Evil Season 1 *UPDATED*


UPDATE: I forgot to mention in this review that IFC will be having a marathon of Stan Against Evil Season 1 this Halloween, October 31, 2017, as a run up to the new season.I am one for enjoyable horror comedy. It is a subset that some seem to forget, and some seem to look down on it. But for the rest of us, it is a chance to laugh and be startled.An enjoyable new series started last year on Halloween.Stan Against Evil.The show is the mad creation of comedian Dana Gould. He had a funny thought one day, thinking about horror movies. "What if my dad was the one who had to save the day?" Grump. Old. Cantankerous. And the concept was born.The series is based around a comedic horror feel, spun out over half an hour. In some ways it's like a recent show of covered, Ghosted. It doesn't have the time to sit still, so the horror and humor come fast.The series takes place in the small town of Willard's Mill, New Hampshire. Classic New England town. Classic small town businesses. Classic old timey witch hunts. Classic old death curses.Back in the 17th century, the constable of the time burned 172 witches. As they died, the witches conjured a curse. Every constable that enters office shall die soon after.And that was true for centuries, until Stanley Miller became sheriff. Stan (John C. McGinley) lasted for years in the job, breaking the odds. But he was finally forced to retire.Stan is a grumpy cantankerous guy. He's set in his ways, and convinced he is always right. He likes things a certain way, and loath to have to admit things should change or that things are out of control.Now a new young sheriff has taken on his job. Evie Barret, an out-of-towner who has come with her young daughter to start a new life.She's a friendly lady, eager to get on with her town, and deputy (who doesn't care to do much). She wants to sympathize with Stan, but he is a pain in the ass.And with this changeover a lot will be happening in Willard's Mill. Evil is afoot.Stan's trouble began at his wife's funeral, which wasn't a great day already. He was sitting in the cemetery beside his daughter, Denise (Deborah Baker, Jr.), lost in thought.An old woman across the casket from him was making eyes at him and smirking.Then she got ugly.He freaked out and attacked her.Everyone agreed it was probably time for him to step down. So Evie came to town.And she got a look at the sheriff's office.She also found Stan there, half naked/ He had been staying there since the funeral, not wanting to go home. But he finally does.He ends up startling his daughter when he gets there. She's annoyed that he disappeared for days. She also didn't make food for herself during this time.Denise is an odd kid. She is a mix of naive, sweet, clueless, and lonely. You wonder what she was like when her mom was around to interact with her.Stan putters around the house and decides to take a look in his wife's sewing room. He was never ever allowed in their when she was alive. But, now...Now he sees what his wife did on her own. There are weapons, tools, strange books, and other weird items.This was not what he expected to see. It is a surreal room for him to be standing in.On the wall is a collection of images of strange creatures. Included, the woman he fought with.You have to understand, the reason Stan is still alive is his wife. She walked the city at night. She fought the monsters and demons her whole life. She kept him and the town from going to Hell.And now, she's gone.Also, the creepy lady from the funeral is visiting the new sheriff.She gives Evie a scare and demands the the glass stone, which was owned by Stan's wife.Stan is still processing everything he's seeing. He looks through a book with strange pict[...]

The Horror Of...Halloween Night, Batman Unlimited: Monster Mayhem


Sitting down for some early morning nourishment. Have to head out on a trip. Perfect time for some Halloween Captain Crunch. I need to fill up on, I know Scotty......but it's my cereal.Anyway, with this I need something else curious. A more recent superhero take. A chance to ride with Batman...and his robowolf...Batman Unlimited: Monster Mayhem.Batman Unlimited is a series of Direct to DVD animated movies following the adventures of Batman and his allies as they take on some odd capers from various members of his Rogues Gallery.It derives from a line of toys that came out (Ah, the cartoon-toy industrial complex.). But I have to say I think it does hold up better than many half hour toy commercials of my youth. It makes for a fun crazy Halloween adventure that taxes the heroes skills.Oh, yes. It's a Halloween adventures. What better time for the monsters to come out?You'll also notice these movies have an interesting Gotham City. Massive skyscrapers. High tech buildings everywhere. Clearly a futuristic world. It's a new look that reminds me some of Batman Beyond.It's Halloween is here! And it's time for the kids to get out and get their treats. Even from Arkham Asylum.So is this an Arkham Asylum, or Mina Tirith?Solomon Grundy and Silver Banshee make a run for it.Arriving in Gotham, Grundy is ecstatic. Halloween. Grundy love Halloween!But some costumed partiers dressed as costumed heroes decide to pester them for being in the road.Grundy doesn't care for that.But at least the pair get a car to go joy riding in.It doesn't take long for the police to notice and give chase. And you'll notice again so of the future tech. The cars race on the ground and then can also take off.Nightwing is also in town and notices. Then Green Arrow pops up, saying he'd heard the pair had escaped from Arkham.So the police gets knocked out, and then Nightwing and Green Arrow strike, almost catching the criminals. Then the two heroes get struck by some globs of goo.It disorients the two of them, and they are taken out.Scarecrow stands over them, and is pissed that Grundy and Banshee didn't follow the plan.Batman arrives and checks on the two unconscious heroes. They soon realize all of these villains together isn't good news.We also see that Cyborg is in town, working with a museum to find and present some ancient artifacts.Then we see the offices of Gogo Shoto. He's a genius designer that works heavily in virtual reality, primarily games.He's working late at night when he's attacked. Clayface has come looking for him. And after a chase, he catches him and then evades Batman.The next day Commissoner Gordon comes to Cyborg for help. A robbery is stumping him, as nothing is clearly missing and security data is damaged. Silas Stone works out that a new super advanced AI had been completed there. And Victor/Cyborg fixes enough security information to reveal the thieves.Scarecrow and Silver Banshee.At a nearby Nuclear Reactor, Grundy is riding up in Pizza Delivery outfit.He tries to fake it out, but the guards aren't buying it. So he goes with Plan B. Punch everyone.Shortly, he's walking out with the needed tech.Joker is waiting for him, annoyed that he's taking so long. But he still gives Grundy an ice cream.Nightwing arrives, but Grundy keeps him busy as Joker runs. And then on the road, he notices robowolf is after him. Joker agrees with me that this is all kind of weird. But amusing.But better yet. robowolf transforms!And Batman rides him!But then Grundy pops up and accidentally headbutts robowolf.Back at the Batcave Batman and Red Robin try to work out what is going on. A VR genius. An advanced AI. Nuclear tech. To what end.O[...]

The Horror Of...Halloween Night, Phineas and Ferb - "Night of the Living Pharmacist"


On the one hand, I think we all need some more toons. But on the other hand, have we had enough zombies? I don't know. This Halloween needs some more more cartoons, but how can I work zombies in? In a fun way.Phineas and Ferb."Night of the Living Pharmacists"As you might notice in watching this episode we are seeing a different look to the opening for this story. It's a full break from the show's song, and a pivot into a fun 60's Alfred Hitchcock opening. It's a nice visual. And the music choice really sells it.The episode is an October release from 2014. An extended special episode, where the city of Danville goes to the pharmacists.Isabella shows up at Phineas and Ferb's house to chat with them. As a Fireside Girl, she is dedicated to earning her badges. For the latest one she needs to address emotional honesty. So she wants to talk to Phineas. (Ooo! Kissy kissy!)But he is, yet again lost in his latest project, and oblivious. Then Baljeet and Buford arrive.The new project is to make you skin elastic and pliable like a rubber ball. It sounds horrifying, But the plan is to allow them all to bounce around like rubber balls. For fun!Meanwhile, Perry is being sent on a new mission. Danville is opening a massive new water tower. It's right beside Doofenshmirtz's tower. And it is being opened by Doof's brother, the mayor. And Doof loves any chance to show his brother up.Perry needs to watch him.Elsewhere, Candace is at the mall, skimming magazines. She's off on her own as her friend Stacy is stuck trying to install a new home entertainment system at home (She'll be oblivious to everything happening tonight, as she's dealing with this.).Candace is eager to get in with someone cool, and then sees Vanessa Doofenshmirtz. She tells Candace she's having a movie party with her friends, and then she invites Candace to come over.Perry arrives at Doof's tower, and is quickly caught in a disco trap. Then Doof shows off his new Inator.The Repulse-Inator. If hit by it, you become super repulsive. And it's just the thing to use on his super popular brother. And when his brother is ruined, Doof will soon be ruling the Tri-State. ...It'll work!At Phineas and Ferb's place, they finish the device, and soon all the kids are bouncing off. And around town, and off tall buildings. ...Was anyone surprised when they ended up existing in the Marvel Universe?At Doof Tower, Perry escapes the trap and starts a fight. Doof explains his daughter is having a party and asks if they can keep it quiet.So Perry gets some pillows so they can pillow fight. But......the Inator goes off, and overloads. It strikes the mayor, and begins to turn him into the most repulsive things imaginable.A copy of Doof.Doof sees the cosmic joke on him here.But the changed mayor reaches out and touches his aide......and she changes to. His repulsiveness is contagious!Now it's spreading quickly across the city.The kids stop to ask what has happen, and they learn. Pharmacists! Pharmacists are attacking people!The kids struggle to not be seen. When they are attacked, they realize their rubber qualities are keeping them safe. But their new powers are also starting to wear off.Doof wants to sit back and enjoy his success, but it starts to occur to him that his daughter is also at risk.The kids get home, but find their powers are gone. Worse, the pharmacists swarmed through an destroyed their device.At Doof Tower, Vanessa, Candace, and the other girls get attacked. They run to hide in Vanessa's room. Vanessa is calm., but the other cool kids all freak out. Candace is matter of fact in all of this as it is a normal day for her at this point.Perry and Doof get [...]

The Horror Of...Halloween Night, Community - "Epidemiology"


Halloween special episodes of TV shows have come and gone in waves over the years. And in this Binge Age it's strange to have any holiday themes when the show will likely come out at a different time in the year. But, once, Fall was a big time for TV entertainment. And some producers were determined to have their big October episode.Not every special has been as memorable as one would like today, with our long pop culture memories. But some specials do stand out. Community, in it's run on NBC, liked to play with it's sitcom and TV world rules. The paintball episodes liked to push their world to breaking points. But Halloween was always interesting. In particular their second season Halloween episode is quite memorable to this day.The show follows a collection of people looking for second chances in their lives, so find themselves at the small and unimpressive Greendale Community College. Jeff the conman/lawyer, is looking for the easy way out. Britta is a self-styled rebel out to help, but struggling with herself. Shirley is a single mom that dreams of opening her own business as to restore normalcy to her life. Annie is a smart kid that struggled with an addiction that derailed her parent's plans, but freed her to find her own way. Abed is a somewhat disconnected young man who likes to see the world through the lens of TV and movies. Troy lost out on a football scholarship when he got hurt senior year, but it's meant he's been able to reexamine his life and find his other passions. And, then, we have Pierce who is a rich older man who enjoys being among the young people and college life. He also likes to push and provoke people to justify his negative opinions, like too many people on Twitter.So let's all head to class and crack the books on...Epidemiology.It's Halloween night at Greendale Community College. And, like every event, the dean is going all out with costume and decorations and food.It's lovely. But when you decorate the food area like this I can't tell what I can and can't eat. Come on, you have decorative eyeballs in everything.But Jeff notes that the garbage bins have containers of army rations from an army surplus store. Decades old food that the Army wouldn't use.We also learn from Britta that the dean has plugged his iPod into the intercom to play the party's music. But it's a constant stream of ABBA, mixed with the dean's voice memos.And ABBA is going to be our soundtrack for this little adventure. Amazingly, it works so well. It heightens the reality of the events to come, while amping the energy of scenes. It's comedic and good music in this setting.The party has plenty of the awkward truths we learn and hopefully accept about Halloween.We don't always know what a costume is. And you should just nicely ask.(It is unfortunate that Annie mentions Miss Piggy before Shirley appears. Because that is a trick which sticks the name in your head. And then you have to get around it before you can get to a better one.)Another lesson, you can make an amazing monster costume. But it doesn't mean you get in people's faces. It's a party, not a haunted house. Okay, Abed?And, yes, Troy, you go and whatever you want. You be you, at Halloween and all year round.Plus, someone is gonna end up going zombie...Annie finds Pierce looking peaked. And he begins stumbling around. She leads him to Chiquita MD to get him checked out.But he's not the only one not feeling fine.The dean demands that this not be an issue of food poisoning, but people are getting sick.And then Pierce moans and bites someone. This is NOT food poisoning.Soon more and more people are wandering arou[...]

The Horror Of...Halloween Night, The Comedy of Terrors (1963)


Black comedy is always a pleasure, the macabre can do more than just make you scream. It offers many access to different emotions and different perspectives.The 60's offered a number of black comedies from production companies like American International Pictures. So let's return to a follow up to The Raven. An opportunity to unite Vincent Price, Peter Lorre, Boris Karloff, and Basil Rathbone on screen.The Comedy of Terrors.It is a change with a reference to Shakespeare, instead of Edgar Allen Poe. But we have no twins or mistaken identities. So the name is a curious choice.The film is another one written Richard Matheson, whose list of works is amazing. This isn't the heights of his work (like I Am Legend, Hell House, The Twilight Zone, The Night Galley), but this period of his work tended to run between dark and fun. And he enjoyed writing stories that pulled together these horror greats on screen together. A win for the writer and the audience.Originally Rathbone was not going to be in this film, with Karloff in his antagonistic role. But Karloff's ailments were proving too taxing to make it feasible for him to do the role (His Frankenstein role took a severe toll on his body years back.). So Rathbone came in to to do the role, and Karloff slipped over to a less active role.The film is something of a comedic take on the infamous Burke and Hare case. It was a historic duo who sold corpses to doctors for research. But to keep up supply, they began murdering. Sadly, it is historically not uncommon when their is a premium given for dead bodies.The film follows Waldo Trumball (Vincent Price), who runs a struggling burial service. He's a drunkard who looks down on everyone around him, including family and coworker. He will do anything for money. Anything.Waldo is assisted by Felix Gillie (Peter Lorre), a quiet and sad man. He is struggling with what Waldo plots, then makes him do, but keeps going since he is in love with Waldo's wife.The wife, Amaryllis (Joyce Jameson), is a put upon lady constantly put down by her husband, and stuck in the role of caring for her ailing father. Her life is rough as Waldo makes it clear he married her to get control of the business, and not to be with her. Waldo even loves to taunt his wife with the idea that he'll slip her father some "medicine" someday, which is labeled poison. She dreams of being an operatic singer, and has a voice that shatters glass.Her father is Amos Hinchley (Boris Karloff), the elderly and disabled partner of Waldo Trumball. He is not all there any longer. Mostly, he putters around.Lastly we have a harsh John Black (Basil Rathbone). He is the landlord for Waldo, and he is angry about unpaid rent. He's threatening to kick them all out if the unpaid rent isn't handled.And this sets everything off/As it is Waldo is cutting corners to a shameless extent, dumping bodies out of coffins, so he can resell them. Felix tries his best to build new coffins, but with no money and just scraps, his results are less than impressive.So with debts coming do, Waldo plots a solution. And he has a devilish one. Kill up some business. So he starts targeting a wealthy elderly local. Felix is opposed, but Waldo knows all of his dirty secrets, like fact he's wanted for bank robbery.With some trouble and near falls they make their move against an older wealthy citizen. And the man is dead.Then, with in days, the widow races out of town, skipping out on all the debts, like the burial costs. He laments the lack of morality in the world.With Black pushing Waldo, and one death on his hands, it is time to targ[...]

The Horror Of...Halloween Night, Nosferatu the Vampyre (1979), In Short


It's Halloween, we are looking at Dracula. Do we need to say much else? Well, yes.The stories of vampires, and the story of Dracula, prove to have many branches. We see vampires in general, and Dracula himself, in many ways. For Dracula we have the debonair count that so many think of. And then there's that creepy figure, the man who does not seem entirely human.Nosferatu, a take on Dracula where his less than human characteristics of the books remain and are enhanced. This take started in the famous silent film of the 20's. Then it returned in a major way again in 1979 with...Nosferatu the Vampyre.The film is a remake (Oh, no. A remake! That's the worse, right?) of the Murnau's Nosferatu. So it uses that films structure, while expanding some. The film gives us the Harkers, Jonathan and Lucy (Bruno Ganz and Isabelle Adjani). Lucy begins to have nightmares that continue through the movie. She feels an evil coming to their city of Wismar.We see there life together, and it has a very white and clean quality probably meant to represent their purity. (But it could also just be the period look.)Meeting his boss Renfield (Roland Topor), he learns he is being sent on an important job. An important Count in Transylvania is looking to finalize purchase of a home there in the city. Harker will be Renfield's emissary. The Count's name is Dracula. (The rights had slipped, so they could use the actual name.)So Harker travels for 4 weeks to reach the land of the Count. Everyone is troubled to learn of his plans. They ask him to turn back.But he laughs it off. Even a book on the superstitious dangers he faces are ridiculous to him.And he moves on, going by coaches and foot until he is at last at Castle Dracula.And he soon stands before the Count (Klaus Kinski) himself.They converse, and it is easy to see how ill at ease the Count is. Distant. Sad. Lonely.Jonathan can sense and see something is wrong. And he soon finds proof.But it is too late. The Count soon leaves and is off across seasons, straits, channels...and then his ship is in Wismar.Before this, Renfield collapses into madness, seeking animals to bite.So Dracula is on his own to deal with stuff.Vlad the UnloaderIn Wismar now, Count Dracula seeks out Lucy. He wants her. But she rebuffs him, and drives him off.Renfield soon finds himself free. And he seeks Dracula. The Count explains that he's sent his rats to spread plague and death."I swear Renfield. If you get any of your sniveling on me..."And death comes. Society is soon collapsing. And Lucy knows what's come for them. But no one will listen.Even a doctor, Van Helsing, will not believe. He wants a scientific answer.So Lucy is alone to deal with the vampire terror. But she's in the midst of madness, hopelessness, and death.Can Lucy bring the city back from the brink? What will it take?And will this movie give us a 70's downer ending?The film is an interesting watch, seeing a return to Nosferatu's roots. But Wener Herzog creates movies that always leave and impact. So it's hard not to want to watch his take on what he deems German cinema's greatest work. (You just have to get passed his "colorful" qualities.)So if you are looking to expand your Dracula studies this Halloween, you should look at watching this remake.[...]

The Horror Of...Halloween Night, Ghosted - Episode 2 Bee-Mo


I have already covered the pilot of the new series Ghosted. So how can I resist coming back to look at the second episode of the series? Particularly when it's a Halloween episode?So once more into the world of Ghosted.Previously, Leroy and Max, were grabbed by the Bureau Underground to solve the mystery of a missing agent. They discovered an unclear plot by transdimensional aliens. After their experience, they asked to stay and work with the Bureau, and they were welcomed into the organization. Then Max saw a screen that showed his missing wife, who was hospitalized after an abduction experience.Opening this episode, Max has not seen his wife yet, but will be allowed to see her in a few days. So the episode keeps itself separated from the series larger mysteries. That will come in the next episode. Instead we get to experience a different sort of paranormal threat, to help further expand the show's world.We see the Leroy and Max out on a day off from the Bureau. It's Halloween and Leroy wanted to see his dead partner's son, Jermaine, and keep his promise to look after the kid. Max has nothing to do, so he's thrilled to be included in Leroy's plans.Jermaine though as plans of his own. He's dressed up for Halloween, but not so he can trick or treat. He wants to go to a party that his mom forbade him from going to.Elsewhere in the city, a man is discovering what looks like a hell beast to him. The 911 call he makes is routed to the Bureau Underground.But it's Halloween at the Bureau Underground. That means things are a little crazy. A full moon. A meteor shower. A werewolf sighting. A destination wedding. It's a crazy paranormal night.'So the place is being taxed, and all of their agents are in the field. And when this call comes in, Lafrey activates Leroy and Max to go and check it out. She's superfocused on the chaos around her, and quickly moving assets where they are needed.But they've already picked up Jermaine, and need to take him with them. As they look around, the kid sneaks from the car, and spots a cat. He goes to check it out, and is scratched. They go back to the car, and Jermaine starts acting weird, his eyes start glowing. He then kicks the door off the car and runs away.They realize the cat must be the creature. They inform  the Bureau of the situation, and try to find Jermaine. They realize he's likely running to the party he wanted to go to.So they race off. Lafrey sends Barry and Annie to give act as support at the party. They go in without backup first, and meet one kid who is foaming at the mouth and hostile. Leroy hits her with a vase. They then exit.Before going back in, Leroy and Max are giving some body armor and tranquilizer guns by Annie.Inside, the lights are off and it's quite quiet. Then the kids start appearing, foaming at the mouth and growling. They jump at the guys and Leroy starts tranquilizing the kids, and Max keeps jumping and missing.By the end, Leroy is fighting with Jermaine, and tranquilizes him as he runs across the street. Max is able to help finally, taking one of his missed tranquilizer shots, to dose another victim (the mom) sneaking up on Leroy.They then send the kids to the Bureau to get treatment. (Barry caught the cat and synthesized an antidote.)Leroy and Max start driving back, and the both get paranoid that Max might have been bit.Then Leroy shows he was the one bit, and tries to get Max. Luckily Annie tracked them, and knocks Leroy out.At the Bureau the night starts calming down, and they create a cover story for what happen to[...]

The Horror Of...Halloween Night, Desire, The Vampire (1982), In Short


I always enjoy a new discovery in the world of horror films. And among 70's and 80's TV movies one can find a number of small scale and interesting stories. We've already taken a look at a favorite of mine, The Midnight Hour. Now let's look at one I missed back in 1982Desire, The Vampire.Yes, actually, it is also called I, Desire. But that name is dreadful. If you see that you think romance and scandal, not vampires and death.The film was put on Monday, November 15th. So, again, two weeks after Halloween. Gah, these TV executives! But it is a Monday night movie so... allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="315" src="" width="560">Oh, I do love these old TV movies.The film takes place in Los Angeles in the modern day, or 1982. It opens one night on Hollywood Boulevard which has been famous for a number of things over the years, including being a place to find sex workers.And the movie takes us into the setting. And, man, all these guys are gruff and grumpy for people about to have sex.One man drives through the area, eyeing the women. He finally stops and has one get into his car. They then head to a motel.Inside a room, they both slip into some things a little mor comfortable. He, into his underpants. Her, into her "Why Yes I Am A Vampire" flowing evening wear."...Manimal, is that you?"A continuing effect throughout the whole film is the choice to add certain animals over our vampire. Primarily they use a panther roar. The result, for me, is that I keep thinking of the 80's TV series Manimal. (But that is my weird defect.)We then move to the city's coroners office. There David is working as an assistant corner, while working on his law degree. He's played by David Naughton, who had starred the prior year in An American Werewolf in London.He isn't thrilled with his job, but he just wants to get through each night. His coworkers bring in a new body, and are eager to talk with him about it.A man who went to a motel with a sex worker. And then he was found dead, drained of blood. And add to that a pair of puncture marks, it's hard not to see a pattern. But vampires don't exist.A little later a priest arrives. He' played by Brad Dourif (The Child's Play movies, Dune, Star Trek: Voyager, The Lord of the Rings movies, The X-Files, etc). So he's got to be evil right? I mean, he has to be, right?He has come to see the body and give some rites. So David leaves him with the body.Then a rabbi arrives, who is there to see the body. When David checks, the priest has vanished.Later David meets his girlfriend Cheryl (Marilyn Jones) at her work in a nearby hospital. They are just moving in together.The next day, Marilyn goes to work as a nurse and learns of a theft the night before. The blood bank was robbed of several pints of blood. It's all a mystery how it happen.David gets a visit at the coroner's office. Detective Van Ness (Dorian Harewood) comes to get him to come to the police station. The police need David to go through some pictures of people that might be the alleged priest.He can't see anyone that matches the priest.Then after he is dropped off, he sees the priest again, slipping into the hospital. And a chase in on.Drawn into the mystery, David becomes obsessed, and lets it start to affect his life.Who is the priest? Is he the vampire? No. We know it's a woman, come on! But who is the vampire (Barbara Stock), and who is it's next meal?Only one way to find out. allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="315" src=[...]

Subspace Reviews: Star Trek: Discovery - Ep 3 "Context is for Kings"


Coming out of Star Trek: Discovery's opening 2-parter we now get into the show's primary storyline. The adventures on the USS Discovery!NCC-1031. Hey! 10/31? How apt for this month.Let's see how this story opens.6 months have passed since the war began. The Federation has lost thousands, and Starfleet is struggling. Burnham, striped of rank, is on her way between penal colonies. Their prison shuttle is traveling through a strange cloud, when some spore starts spreading over the hull.The pilot suddenly exits the ship to try and clean away the spores, before they can destroy the ship. And then she is lost. And now the prisoners, all locked in place, are helpless. Everyone freak outs, as the ship is out of control and soon to lose power. But Burnham is silent. She is resigned, her life is over anyway.But things look up quickly, as the prison shuttle is caught in a tractor beam. In moments they are pulled up to the nearby USS Discovery. The look of this first scene and the new ship is amazing. The ship is lit and built beautifully. The space cloud is evocative, and being tractored into the shuttlebay gives our new ship a quick introductory hero moment.Everyone wonders what is up. The Discovery looks to be a brand new state of the art ship, but it isn't near the frontlines of the war. They also see the ship is full of scientist ("silver shirts") and then armed officers with black badges. It is mysterious.They are met by Commander Landry, head of security,who is overseeing them while they are on the ship. She is a hard and direct person, who seems very cynical about most everything.Burnham learns, while in the mess hall, she isn't the only person from the Shenzhou aboard. The helmsman from that ship is here. Though it seems she is still recovering from injuries incurred at that battle, and she isn't remotely happy to see Burnham. It happens when your labeled a mutinous traitor.Burnham is then jumped by her fellow prisoners, but she handles them quickly with a form of Vulcan martial arts. (I hope no one is shocked that Vulcans might study and create a martial arts. They also have fusion cuisine.) After that she is separated from them. And, the captain would like to see her.She is taken to the bridge, where she is surprised to see another old crewmate, Saru. He's now risen to be First Officer aboard the Discovery."Oh...shit."Saru seems nervous to see her.She's taken into the darkened captain's ready room.ASIDE: And you can see a map of the frontline between the Federation and Klingons. I notice there is a bump in it that I assume is space that hasn't fallen on the Federation side. There is a bolded spot that is at the center of the bump. I wonder if that is a key member world, or major starbase.(And there is a tribble present. Is that because they have a calming effect on humans? Or, is it because they react hostilely to Klingons?)The room is dark, and the captain,Gabriel Lorca, is staring out the window. He explains that he had recently had an eye injury, during battle. He had the choice to get artificial eyes, or avoid quick changes of light. He doesn't want to lose his eyes.He tries to chat with her, but she knows that something is up. She was unexpectedly transferred out of her prison. The shuttle was rerouted halfway through it's trip. And now she's aboard a strange new starship.He then tell her she will be put in crew quarters, and then she'll be given an assignment. She balks at this. But he reminds her that he has no interest [...]

The Horror Of...Halloween Night, Justice League Action - "Trick or Treat"


Another morning, another bowl of Count Chocula, and another chance to delve into superheroes and horror.This time we can delve into a more recent DC series that would fit nicely into the old Saturday Morning format. Justice League Action.And the shows has a Halloween episode!"Trick or Treat"First we get to meet Caine, who is the caretaker of the House of Mystery. A strange house that moves around in time and space, seemingly of it's own will. And this night the house has landed once again, and a tale is emerging.It's Halloween, and kids are running around town. Among them is a group of kids dressed at Batman, Zatanna, Doctor Fate, and John Constantine.They are enjoying Halloween, looking through their candy haul. Constantine takes to some rock candy on a stick. Though some of them are annoyed to have gotten toothbrushes. Batman is pleased to see someone care about their tooth care. But he also vows to later egg the house.They then see some bullies dressed as army men picking on a kid dressed as a black cat.They feel the need to get involved. Each one helps to outwit and overwhelm the larger kids.And now they realize that they might actually have some powers due to their costumes.The kid in the cat suit thanks them, then tells them the bullies have been storing stolen candy (and other property of the local kids) in the creepy old house down the way. The House of Mystery.They head to the house and try to figure out how to get in.At the same time the cat kid reveals that he set the bullies on himself. He then returns the bullies to there true form, as rats. He then waits for the heroes to get in the house.Once in the house, the cat pounces. With magic, it seals the door to the house, and then sends the kids flying deep into the house.Soon creatures rise all around them, trying to capture them. So they have to run.Finally, they find themselves in a room with a mirror. Zatanna and Doctor Fate realize it is one that reveals truth. They actual are the Justice League.The cat appears in the room, and reveals his identity. Klarion the Witch Boy.He laughs at how he's run them around.Doctor Fate remembers what happen. He'd sensed the House of Mystery appear, and the League went in to be sure no one accidentally entered the House.Klarion reveals he took the chance to attack and turn the League into kids. Then he trapped them in the House. Now he will finish the effort by taking the Helm of Fatem and leaving the group trapped in the House.With this helmet Klarion becomes quite powerful.Constantine acts by taking hot cinnamon candy and turning them into a flaming hot spell. He then throws it at the helmet, knocking it from Klarion.Klarion tussles with Constantine and Fate to get the helmet back. Batman pushes Zatanna to try a spell, but she's worried her braces will stop her.After sending more monsters at the League, he sends his cat in tiger form at them.Zatanna is finally able to pronounce a spell to stop the cat.Doctor Fate gets his helmet, and Batman has him end this.They force the House to expel them.And then the clocks strike midnight, and the House starts to leave.Klarion runs at the team to strike again, but Zatanna seals the door in his face.When the House disappears, and is Klarion gone, the team is restored to normal.And Constantine pesters Batman about his 10 year old self.A fun and short Halloween tale, Just the right thing to watch with your creepy cereal, as you start your creepy day.[...]

The Horror Of...Halloween Night, Phineas and Ferb - "Druselsteinoween" - It's a thing!


Another weekend, and another chance for some cartoon fun. So let's head back to see how Phineas and Ferb are handle one year's Halloween fun, or rather some Drusselsteinian Halloween fun. allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="315" src="" width="560">"Druselsteinoween"And I know what your thinking. "But everyone knows Drusselstein is spelled with 2 S's not 1. What the hell?" I know, man. It's bugged me for years to.And yes, it is Halloween in this one, as this is the fifth episode in the series to push events out of the Summer period. Which means we see the Flynn family at Halloween. Mom and dad are prepping for Halloween. Dad is working on a jack o'lantern, a while also finalizing his and Mom's costumes. Giant ape and nurse. The a parents plan to have fun while the kids all go out for the night.And, yeah, the parent's plan is apparently to scare kids into dropping candy they can then scoop up.Meanwhile, Perry is sent to check on Dr. Doofenshmirtz, to be sure he's not up to anything.Turns out he's handing out candy and getting ready for a more run of the mill adventure. A castle that was plopped into the city is from his aunt, who left it to him in her will. And now it's beside his building.But Doof has also learned that his aunt left a massive fortune hidden in the castle, along with clues he can follow. So he asks Perry to hang out with him, and help him get the treasure.So they go on search of the castle, being taken high and low by clues.Finally, the bags of money are revealed. Doof is thrilled. Then all the officials start arriving. Fees for the castle. Fines for having a moat in the downtown area. On and on. By then the money is gone, and the castle will have to go.At the same time, everyone is heading out to the biggest party in town. The mother of all parties, in a real old castle (i.e. Castle Doof), recently dropped down in the middle of the city.The party is being put on by Vanessa Doofenshmirtz, daughter of Dr. Doofenshmirtz and all around cool kid. It will be a costumed event. So she's decided to invite her secret boyfriend. Monty, son of the head of OWCA, Major Monogram. Neither dad would like to see their kids with the kid of the other. But in costumes they can be together in public.So Vanessa tells him she'll be dressed as the Vampire Queen (which is funny as the voice actor for Vanessa also does the voice of Marceline the Vampire Queen on Adventure Time). Monty says he plans to dress as the Scarlet Pimpernel. Vanessa has to admit she has no idea what that is.Trouble arises at the party. Vanessa sees that Phineas and Ferb's sister Candace has also come as the Vampire Queen.And then Candance's best friend Stacie also shows up in the same costume. But she leaves to change.Then Candance's boyfriend shows up dressed as the Scarlet Pimpernel.And then Stacie shows up dressed as the Pimpernel. And she just gives up.In fact the party is lousy with Vampire Queens and Scarlet Pimpernels. Who would have thought it?Phineas and Ferb are also at the party. They were hired by Vanessa to pull off the party: decorating, handling music, organizing food and drink. Ferb even gets to croon.The party proves to go well. The music is good. Monty and Vanessa finally meet up and dance.Even Isabella and Phineas have some fun.But Major Monogram happens to stop by the party and think he's spotted his son.But with a quick change, Monogram thinks it[...]