Archive for death

Featured Fear: Thanatophobia (Fear of Death)

Posted in Media, Videos and Clips with tags , , , , , , , , , , on October 29, 2016 by ranranami

 

In this world, where the fortunate find themselves boxed away from reality, Thanatophobia (fear of death) is all too commonly nurtured, to the point that many people find themselves knocking on wood, tying every act to superstition, every fearful thought to the knowledge that some day we all become worm’s meat.

Death is inescapable. Of the many great phobias out there, it is the one that will always capture you in the end, and for many, the very thought is so disturbing that often it seems to usher itself in that much quicker with the stress and obsession it seems to create in the victim. Nothing so typifies this fear being realized in such a literal sense as the knight’s eternal struggle with death in Bergman’s classic film, ‘The Seventh Seal.’ A brave man encountering death, denying his fears and at the same time meeting them head on with something as mundane as a game of chess. Bravery, in fact, is the best way to face any fear, isn’t it?

 

The desire for immortality, the modern beautification and idealization of the vampire, our cultural obsession with an upcoming zombie apocalypse, the fact that if you ever bring death up in a general conversation you are pretty much guaranteeing that you’re the buzzkill of the year. We are all afraid of death, to some degree. Even for those who deny it, those who obsess with it, those who pursue it. Instinct itself demands that this fear shall always and ever be a constant until the very last man or woman takes his or her very last breath.

 

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Vintage Comics – Black Magic, Issue #1: Last Second of Life, The Woman in the Mirror (Cover-16)

Posted in Comics with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on October 17, 2015 by ranranami

My first impression when I looked at the Black Magic series was ‘wow’. The art style is frankly excellent. Super Hero comic quality, in fact. I decided to do a little looking, and it turns out the series was made by Joe Simon and Jack Kirby…so no wonder the quality is so good. Seeing as the series started in the 50s, too, it’s a bit later than most of the comics I’ve featured so far. In fact, reading this, I grew a little irritated just thinking about how difficult it can be to find good (old) horror comics at the shops I’ve been to. Usually you’ll find gems like this tucked into the back of a ‘Misc.’ box, or beneath a stack of comics nobody has bothered to sort yet.

The stories in Black Magic are classic ones, the kind we’ve seen in many forms for decades on shows and in books. The first one features a man with little respect for death, and even less for the dying. He decides to seek the knowledge of things beyond life best left unknown. The second story proves a point I made in yesterday’s article…that mirrors are downright evil, and old ones are even worse.

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80s Horror Posters

Posted in Media, Movies and shows with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on March 25, 2015 by ranranami

Today I decided to share some pretty graphics, and what better decade for interesting horror posters and movie covers than the golden age of camp? The 80s!

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frightmare poster

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Vintage Comics: Midnight, Issue #2: The Needless Night, Fortune or Fate pt. 2, Forever and Ever (Pg. 14 – End )

Posted in Comics with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on February 27, 2015 by ranranami

Sometimes you read a ‘horror story’, and you realize it’s either the first time that writer ever approached the subject, or perhaps they were attaching the word horror just to gain a larger audience. In finishing this issue, I felt there were some sad moments. A bit of death. And an ironic twist. The first story approaches a semi-Faustian deal that ultimately teaches the bad guy a lesson, but there’s no real bite or substance. It’s like the writer pulled out halfway through and decided he didn’t really want a horrific retribution for the devil’s bargain. The second story finishing up Fortune or Fate is pretty much the closest to actual horror the whole comic came to. The last story…well, at least I was taken by surprise. I expected one character to be evil, and he ended up just having a bit of bad luck…

Midnight. Reminding us all that the people responsible for getting horror comics banned back in the mid-20th century…probably hadn’t read nearly enough comics.

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Vintage Comics – Eerie, Issue. 8: Ghost of the Gorgon, The Ghost of Doctor Renick (Cover – Pg. 14)

Posted in Comics, Media with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on October 4, 2014 by ranranami

Having mentioned before that I’ve been planning a Medusa costume for ages, I was only too excited to see the first story in this comic featuring a gorgon…with the most awesome snake hair I’ve ever seen. Who cares if Medusa was the only one of the sisters who actually had snake hair? This girl is rocking it. The exposition is surprisingly fast-paced in this comic, which I definitely appreciate. It’s nice when writers and artists both realize they aren’t making a novel, but a story that conveys action through pictures rather than words.

 

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Vintage Comics – Adventures Into Darkness, Issue 5: Death Follows Orders, The Phantom Hounds of Castle Eyne, and The Chimes of Doom (Pg 10 – Pg. 17)

Posted in Comics, Media with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on August 19, 2014 by ranranami

Is it just me, or does the girl in the first page of the story look rather like she’s advertising something? The way she poses and smiles…it’s a bit staged. The first story today deals with an incredibly common theme in the 40s and 50s horror comics, namely evil Nazis coming back from the dead in some way. It wasn’t a unique theme in dead snow, for those of you who may not have read a few of these. One of these days I’ll post the ‘Hitler’s Head’ comic, I swear I will.

Though the stories may have awkward wording in this comic, I will say that I love the colors. I also love the sheer amount of action packed into the panels.

 

Adventures Into Darkness # 5012 Adventures Into Darkness # 5013 Adventures Into Darkness # 5014 Adventures Into Darkness # 5015 Adventures Into Darkness # 5016 Adventures Into Darkness # 5017 Adventures Into Darkness # 5018 Adventures Into Darkness # 5019

Horror Flick of the Week: Masque of the Read Death (1964)

Posted in Media, Movies and shows, Trailers, Videos and Clips with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on August 5, 2014 by ranranami

It’s a tough go for me to say I like Roger Corman movies. I should, I mean…he’s (arguably) the true king of low budget horror and even just low budget movies in general. His skills at creating a ‘decent’ film with relatively little money in an incredibly short amount of time are legendary. Thanks to him, many people got their launch in the industry. This all sounds great…but I’ve hardly seen many of his movies that left me astounded. I also read a pretty inflammatory book of interviews about him once which kind of put me off Corman for awhile. But I digress, because I’m not here to talk about his faults today. I’m here to mention one of my favorite Corman (and Price) films which itself stands as a pretty good example of the incredible movies he was capable of when he actually tried.

Some day Mister Corman will receive a very good post from me, but I don’t want to spend all of this entry focusing on him. I want to focus on my flick of the week, ‘Masque of the Red Death’. Loosely based on the Poe story of the same name, and I say loosely because the movie adds a thousand more details. Good ones, which managed to flesh out an otherwise decent but not outstanding Poe story.

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I can’t help but wonder if Corman went on a Bava binge before undertaking the explosion of color this film turned out to be. Everywhere you look, the lighting and the costumes match the setting just so. I really can’t stress enough how absolutely stunning this picture was.

 

Everyone in this movie is at their best. Vincent Price. Hazel Court. Roger Corman himself, directing of course. I might even go so far as to say that I think this is his best movie. It also goes incredibly with a good bottle of red wine, to match the mood.

There is a lot of dialogue and presentation in the whole film, very minimal action. But when the action does take place, it is very gruesome. Especially Hazel’s scene wherein she marries the devil and soon…’joins him in their nuptial rights’. Masque is a very good introduction piece before delving into a heavier cinematic work, like ‘Kill Baby…Kill’ or ‘Black Sunday’, both excellent…but very long movies.

In short, I highly recommend this ‘Masque of the Red Death’ for anybody who loves a good bit of color and period clothing…with a little bit of blood thrown in for good measure. But you can also take your pick of the other colors of death, if you like too…

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