How I Spent November 2020

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The nights are drawing in, the air is growing chill, and time is running out for me to finish my to-do list for this year. I’ve been crackling on with some writing projects – most of which will not see publication until a while down the road – and likely I’ll be doing the same for much of December.

I’ll be giving myself less time for blogging next month, but to keep my schedule up I’ll be launching a new series of posts, Christmas Past, where I dig up clippings about festive celebrations of days gone by.
Until then…

Articles of mine published elsewhere this month:

Article topics for December and beyond:

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November 2020: A Month in Horror

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When it comes to horror, November is a little like Boxing Day: the decorations are still up, but let’s face it, much of the spirit has faded. Yet there were still some genre happenings of late.

First of all, the ever-reliable Shudder unveiled a new crop of films. Blood Vessel follows a group of survivors adrift at sea in the final year of World War II as they find terror aboard a seemingly abandoned ship.; Lingering is a South Korean film about a haunted hotel; and Leap of Faith is a documentary in which director William Friedkin discusses his most famous film, The Exorcist.

In other news, the long-running Supernatural (which premiered back in 2005) concluded this month. I’ll admit that I’ve never watched the series, although even a bystander like myself could hardly fail to notice the loud reactions to a certain romantic coupling.

Supernatural should most definitely not be confused with the similarly-titled Paranormal, an Egyptian television drama based on a series of books by Ahmed Khaled Tawfik. Den of Geek calls it “weird but addictive” while Egyptian Streets praises the series for its authenticity.

Sadly, there were again some familiar faces from the horror genre who did not make it to the end of the month.

Daria Nicolodi was an actress and screenwriter whose career involved multiple collaborations with her sometime partner, director Dario Argento. She co-wrote Suspiria, one of Argento’s best-loved films, and also performed in the likes of Deep Red, Inferno, Tenebrae and Phenomena. She passed away on 25 November, at the age of 70.

Dave Prowse was best known as the man who portrayed Darth Vader onscreen (and, to British people of a certain generation, as the Green Cross Man) but he also had a few roles for Hammer: he portrayed two distinct Frankenstein monsters in Horror of Frankenstein and Frankenstein and the Monster from Hell, and appeared as a strongman in Vampire Circus. On top of this, he played a Minotaur in the 1972 Doctor Who story “The Time Monster”. He passed away on 28 November, aged 85.

Jon Watkins Fails Demonology: Never Mind the Molochs

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Yes, I’m still making my way through the list of demons that was compiled by Leonard Ashley and then screwed up by fundamentalist Christian Jon Watkins. See also the first and second parts of this series…

Karau – A demon who is known for causing death in the world, he effects people by tragedies & illness.

Apparently, this is a being from the folklore of the South American Yupa people, and is mentioned in Johannes Wilbert’s 1974 book Yupa Folktales.

Continue reading “Jon Watkins Fails Demonology: Never Mind the Molochs”

Nineteenth Century Vampires: A Partial History

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It occurred to me that, between this year’s Vampires on the Margins series and The Vampyre’s Legacy from last year, not to mention a couple of one-off articles I’ve done on the side, I’ve covered a fairly large chunk of nineteenth century vampie literature over at WWAC. So, in case anyone wants to read it all togethe in chronological order, here’s a quick list:

Werewolf Wednesday: Enter Paul Naschy

This week at my Killer Horror Critic column on werewolf cinema I’m reviewing the film that debuted a true legend of Spanish schlock. It can only be Mark of the Wolf Man!

Past instalments: