Wednesday, September 30, 2020

Boo! The Right Thing


     As we sit on the eve of another October, it is undeniable that this season of the shadows is different. We are all in the middle of a world-wide pandemic, with a new normal designed to keep us all as healthy and safe as we can be. Even now, as we face the COVID-19 pandemic and go into October, many don't know exactly what or how or if Halloween will look like in their communities. 

    The Ghost haunts upstate New York, and we have had a year. While our state was faced astronomical loss and infection earlier this year, our cases are, thankfully, not what they were, and trending down. Masks are mandatory, and so is social distancing. 

      And our hometown mega success of a haunted attraction, Steve Szortyka's Frightworld, has made the difficult decision to do the right thing and cancel their 2020 season. The structure of a haunted attraction-- a haunted house-- is by its nature a risk. You are entering closed quarters with people who jump out at you and do other things to scare you-- and make you scream. Being scared from a careful distance, even with masks, does not seem worth the effort-- or the risk to patrons, actors and other workers. We here at the Ghost commend Steven and his team for making the right call-- and we look forward to joining them again-- in safer times-- next year. 

Tuesday, September 29, 2020

Universal Monsters Movie Binge: "The Phantom of the Opera" (1925)

    The Ghost has made the decision to watch-- in the order they were released-- the original Universal Studios Monster movies. The iconic films that set the tone for horror films as we have come to know them. I have-- I believe-- seen all of these films in the entireties before, but I thought something fun and spooky could be gained by taking them all in as we open the book on a new October season of the dim light and shadows. 

     We started with "The Phantom of the Opera," starring Lon Chaney. Released in 1925, this is a fully silent film, and stands on its own, years before the rest of what Universal would create were released. Based on Gaston Leroux's 1910 novel that would gain superstardom as a stage musical nearly a century later, Universal's take on the Opera Ghost is every candlelit bit a monster movie. Lon Chaney, who famously did his own makeup for the Phantom (some of which involved actual fish parts), did so in secret and revealed his look to many on set for the first time during filming. Universal's publicity about the film was also similarly tight-lipped; hiding the Phantom's look from all promotion and saving his unmasking for the film. 

     This end result, shot almost 100 years ago, is dreamlike and hypnotic for many reasons, the least of which is that this film was made so long ago. These actors donned costumes and performed across great sets, of the Paris theater and the Phantom's underground lair, almost one hundred years ago. The prints that exist of this film are grainy, but we should be thankful they exist at all, as this film was very nearly lost to the obscurity of history. The set pieces herein are gorgeous; whether it's the opera and ballet being performed, or the Phantom's taking of Christine Daae down to his musical lair. The horror is also ramped up; the Phantom's famous unmasking scene is the horror the film hinges on, and the Phantom's terrorizing the opera, its guests and Christine is played up to great camp and creepy effect-- the Phantom at points using an air tube to travel under his underwater lake to Raul's boat, at the end taking Christine into a carriage ride filled with shots of a manic and maskless Phantom at the reins.

     Of note watching the film again, I was struck by how much of the imagery popularly associated with the Phantom of the Opera, especially in Andrew Lloyd Weber's stage musical, appears to have originated in this film. From the caped Phantom atop a statue watching Christine and lover Raul on the rooftop, to the Phantom's dressed Skeleton masquerade costume. These happenings may have been described in the book, but it is interesting that the exact look of them seem not to have changed in popular adaptation in close to 100 years. Unique to this film-- spoilers ahead for the remainder of the next two paragraphs only-- is the ending, which was changed. Originally filmed more faithfully to the original novel, with the Phantom dying at his organ after letting Christine go, test audiences did not respond well, and the striking chase scene through the scenes of Paris-- passing Notre Dame and arriving at the Seine where the Phantom is beaten by the mob and thrown into the river-- was filmed and added to appease audiences. 

    Two things stood out, very starkly, about the ending. One is how brutally and ultimately they deal with killing the Phantom, the horror, at the end; beating him to what appears to be death and throwing him in the river. And second, how even with that finality, while we are not shown a body, the possibility of his surviving and emerging from the Seine to terrorize another day is very present. In what appears to have been an effort to avoid showing the violence of what befalls the Phantom, the door was left open for generations of horror film endings that appear to triumph over the monster (or do they?) only to leave the door open for future sequels. 

     The evolution of the Phantom named Erik's mask is also interesting. In the present day, the most commonly associated mask is that popularized by the Lloyd Weber musical, with the simple white mask covering half of Erik's face. The mask in the Chaney film covers the entire face, and is a simple, almost theatrical likeness of a human face that changes to loose cloth (curtainlike?) under the eyes. The understated nature of this mask, with the antique look is uniquely unsettling. 

Lon Chaney in full makeup

     One doesn't have to go far to see how the success of the this film spurred the next installments in the Universal series, and would forever shape horror in film. With the introduction of sound, the film was reworked and rereleased in 1930 with segments of sound and music. While Chaney was unable to be in reshoots as he was by then under contract with MGM, other actors in the film reprised their roles in the reworked film which was released to great success. This reissued film has sadly and apparently been lost to history, but there are clips online of a home video reworking that put pieces of the soundtrack (the soundtrack, which alone has survived) and it does appear that the Phantom-- even while silent in a talking film-- is even more affective, juxtaposed with the sound and music around him. Grossing over a million dollars in 1930, it's clear that this film and its rereleases proved that there was big business in horror. For the purposes of our Universal Monsters Movie Binge, I have decided to only watch the original films; no sequels, remakes or reimaginings (those will come later.) 

Chaney's Phantom at the masquerade. 

     It is clear, watching this 1925 horror smash hit, why it struck such a note with audiences, and why they wanted more. And why Universal readily gave it to the world, and made history. 

Monday, September 7, 2020

Scary Book Club: "Something in the Blood: The Untold Story of Bram Stoker, the Man Who Wrote Dracula" by David J. Skal


 A number of years ago, I read "Death Makes a Holiday" by David J. Skal. A cultural historian, critic and writer, Skal has made something of a career writing in an academic but immensely readable way about the horror genre, and the holiday and real life people that surround the world of the macabre. I loved and devoured "Death Makes a Holiday," a gripping history of the holiday we now know and celebrate as Halloween, and I always wanted to go back to his writing sooner. I finally did this summer, and I so regret not doing so sooner. 

"Dracula The Definitive Edition" with illustrations by Edward Gorey 

 I have loved "Dracula" since before I read the novel. Horror, the macabre, and scary stories that bump in the night have intrigued me from my earliest memories, and I was always drawn to the blood sucking count from Transylvania. I first read Bram Stoker's 1897 novel in the seventh grade, for a book report assignment in which we had total freedom to read any (approved, though not held to rigorous standards) book. I remember laying in my bed reading through the words and happenings and Jonathan Harker's travels and the Count holding him captive and the vampire brides and the nighttime sea voyages and the graveyard by the sea and Carfax Abbey and Mine and Lucy and Dr. Van Helsing. I knew I was not understanding everything I read, but what I read I loved. Count Dracula has become a cultural legend, eternally living in countless books, films, television programs and beyond, at a level few other fictional characters have. I've always been interested in Bram Stoker, the monster's creator, but knew precious little of his life. I picked up David J. Skal's massive "Something in the Blood" this summer, and instantly fell into its mesmeric, almost vampiric spell. And it is absolutely one of the best biographies I've ever read.

Whitby, North Yorkshire, England; inspiration for "Dracula" 

 This book is many things. A biography of Bram Stoker. A meticulously researched study of the writer's life, giving full social, political and cultural context of his time. And a studied look at how the novel lived on after Stoker's death, and it's journey into stage and screen adaptations-- and beyond. From the early chapters were Skal details the upbringing of his parents and the birth and childhood of Stoker-- as he recounts amaizng histories of plagues and burial practices and the literature young Bram would have had access to and read-- I knew this was something special. 

Bela Lugosi as Dracula in Universal Studio's 1931 film 

     As someone who considered themselves a student of history, who works often in the field of genealogy, I as greatly sympathetic to the historian's dilemma; how to tell history, what is known, by accurately retelling the facts and responsibly presenting informed hypotheses when appropriate, and when details are lacking. This is not an easy task, but it is one that Skal balances beautifully. In this book, we are told the facts of Bram's life; his family, his mother, Florence the woman he would later marry, and a nearly unbelievable cast of characters that include the major artists of his time such as Walt Whitman and Oscar Wilde. Many times of his years, facts are scarce, but Skal presents them, and the possibilities, probabilities and the fact that we often may never know the truth for certain in a masterful way. 

Frances Balcombe, as drawn by Oscar Wilde

 This is very much the case when it comes to Stoker's wife, Florence, and his reported sexuality. Much of the correspondence between Florence and her former suitor, Oscar Wilde, is lost to history, but what remains offers endlessly interesting possibilities about the nature of their relationship. Likewise, when it comes to Stoker's much rumored sexuality, there is a plethora of lines to read between. The letters young Bram writes to Walt Whitman after reading his work, on male love, reads, even with the most conservative of caution to consider the time they were written in, like someone coming out of the closet. One can only wonder what Whitman and Stoker discussed when the met at multiple points during the American tours of the Lyceum theater Stoker; though, of course, we'll never know. 

County Dracula and Jonathan Harker in BBC One and Netflix's "Dracula" (2020)

 We will also never know the true nature of Stoker's decades long friendship with the writer Hall Caine. Many of Stoker's letters to Caine appear to have been lost (perhaps even discarded by Florence), but it begs thought exactly how deep the two men's relationship was (and the man who Stoker famously dedicated "Dracula" to.) This is especially interesting when the homosexual subtext in the novel is examined; the lusting Count Dracula has for Jonathan Harker, and the fear of that forbidden. Gender and sexual variance is a theme explored by Stoker not just in "Dracula," but in numerous others of his fiction works, and the examination of these issues, as well as race and culture, are discussed at length in the book and never fail to be anything but engrossing. 

Hall Caine

 Stoker's novel, as Skal points out at length, has endured because "Dracula" plays out many of humanity's most enduring issues and fears; life and death and triumphing over death, religion, the Other and fears of what is not us; the fear behind romance and seduction. Bram Stoker wrote a novel, well over 100 years ago, that masterfully explores these themes-- all while being a tremendously entertaining, satisfying and frightening read. 

Henry Irving and Bram Stoker

     While much of Stoker's life will likely forever be lost to history, the story of the sickly boy who loved stories, and grew up into athletic intellectual who found himself in the work and friendship of writers like Walt Whitman, appears, the stuff itself of great fiction. Stoker, this man who made a living working his life for actor Henry Irving and his theater (a man who Stoker idolized, but often treated him like little more than a servant beneath his celebrity; a servant who was, in the spare time he had, writing work that make him and his work immortal) lived an uncanny and endlessly interesting life, and Skal's brilliant book is a-- while a commitment-- a must read for any serious fan of "Dracula" and the all the novel and character have spawned in popular culture.  


Bram Stoker
Bram Stoker

Wednesday, August 5, 2020

Scary Book Club: "We Have Always Lived in the Castle" by Shirley Jackson


     Some stories are yours. You may not have written them, and, for example, someone may have written them back in 1962 before you were born. But, nonetheless. You know they are yours from the moment you finish the first sentence, paragraph, page, chapter, and there is no stopping. 

     This is how I found Shirley Jackson's final novel, "We Have Always Lived in the Castle." It is a novel that defies categorization, and is beloved to the Ghost because of that and so many reasons. It begins:

     "I am eighteen years old, and I live with my sister Constance. I have often thought that with any luck at all I could have been born a werewolf, because the two middle fingers on both my hands are the same length, but I have had to be content with what I had. I dislike washing myself, and d s, and noise. I like my sister Constance, and Richard Plantagenet, and Amanita phalloides, the death-cup mushroom. Everyone else in my family is dead.." 

     If that opening paragraph does not make you read more, I cannot help you, and we will part ways here. 
     At risk of falling into hyperbole, the novel is a masterpiece. Jackson clocks her pages in at well under two-hundred; sparring not a word. Each description—through Mary Katherine’s words—of the world the Blackwoods live in—the sanctuary of her sister and the house, where they happen to care for their sick uncle, the beautiful, life-giving garden and woods and the frightful town outside—is at once deeply relatable, unsettling and comforting.

     The novel is often described as a Gothic mystery, and there are many mysteries afoot. Not the least of which is who poisoned the dead members of the Merricat and Constance’s family—her late parents, brother and Uncle Julian’s wife. But, perhaps, the most intriguing mysteries are what make the characters tick; why Merricat believes buried personal objects offer protection, why Constance is afraid of strangers and to leave the house, why Uncle Julian’s mind continues to decline—and why, when he arrives, cousin Charles is easily one of the most detestable characters I have read throughout literature. 

     Jackson’s last novel is timeless, but could not be more of the moment in the pandemic sheltering in place and quarantines of our current time. Merricat leaves her house only to go to the supermarket for necessary groceries; and, as necessary, books from the library. “We Have Always Lived in the Castle” is a novel of family and of anxiety; of mental illness and tragedy. Of creating lives and truths for ourselves; of ghosts and witches, and little girls who are as much like a cat as they are human.

Author Shirley Jackson, C. Erich Hartmann

If you have not read this novel, I encourage you to do so. The Ghost recently picked this for a book club selection to revisit; and, having first read this more than a decade ago, the story is as important, engrossing and weird as when I first opened the cover.

Film Adaptation: "We Have Always Lived in the Castle" 2019"

     In 2019, director Stacie Passon became the first to take a crack at adapting this 1962 novel for the screen. I had not watched it until after rereading the novel, and though the release was to little fan fare but generally favorable reviews, I found it a well-meaning failure. There is much here to be admired, and those involved are clearly fans of the text. Taissa Farmiga, of spooky fame from TV’s American Horror Story, excels as Merricat. Her speech, her walk (while never described in the novel) is a brilliant choice. The other actors are less strong—Alexandra Daddario has moments were she shines as Constance, but more often than not the writing stifles the character. Crispin Glover is a fine Uncle Julian with a certain creepy gravitas, and most of the townspeople are sufficiently menacing. 

     Sebastain Stan’s cousin Charles fails to deliver, however. In Jackson’s prose, he is one of the most hateful characters in literature; the script, though, tosses all restraint away, and the impact of the character is lost. Also, while in the novel it is easily read the Charles uses his sex appeal to charm Constance, the degrees this film takes them to, while showing some restraint by modern standards, is too much. The shots of the moon where Merricat wants to go live with her sister are beautiful and nearly justify the film on their own. However, decisions like removing much of Merricat’s cat Jonas and calling Merricat’s rituals explicitly spells remove much of the mystery, magic and psychology which is so engaging in the novel. And the changes to the ending are unforgivable.

     Read the book. Shirley Jackson’s fairy tale of urban legend is a beautiful, creeping tale of the family, home and life, which will be around for years to come.

Saturday, May 30, 2020

Modern Horror Classic Remakes Challenge

     Late one rainy spring pandemic night, while scrolling through social media, the Ghost recently came across a post asking horror fans what modern film remakes-- from the 1970s through the 1980s-- were the best. For an even less discernible reason, I decided to marathon watch those I had not seen, to be able to answer such a curious question.

     The films listed were "Halloween," "Texas Chainsaw Massacre," "Friday the 13th," "A Nightmare on Elm Street" and "Child's Play."

     Previously, I had seen the remakes of  Halloween and Texas Chainsaw Massacre. How did they all fare? What worth could there be in determining how well films that remade modern horror classics over the last decade or more had succeeded, failed and everything in between? I could not answer the question-- so I set out to find answers.

"Halloween" (2007)

     John Carpenter's 1978 film Halloween is, without hyperbole, my favorite horror film. It links the spirit of more old fashioned, Universal monster movies with very modern fear and horror, and does so, beautifully, to the backdrop of All Hallow's Eve. There is a reason why it has endured, and been imitated so often, and will continue to be so for years to come. No fear film holds up better for me; no matter how many times I watch Michael quietly stalk Jamie Lee Curtis and her friends in the waning afternoon before dusk falls on Halloween, I will always have my anxiety surge and heart beat fast as Laurie tries to run away after darkness falls and her friends have been killed.

     This is all to say that I avoided seeing the remake of Halloween for a long time. I did not see it when it first came out at the theater. I remember seeing a DVD for sale at a now long extinct Blockbuster shortly after it was released on video, and I snatched it up and put it on my shelf, where it stayed for a long time. I don't know how long I waited to watch it. But when I finally did, it was not what I was expecting, and it was not good.

    For me, Rob Zombie took everything that worked for the original film, and made it the opposite. The anonymity of Michael in the original, not knowing him, his motives, or even seeing him for much of the film, gave such a build up of dread and wonder; the kind of fear that lasts long after the last shot. In Zombie's film, Michael is given a paint by number sympathetic backstory, which is as predictable as it is ridiculous. And the charismatic actors of the first film-- the teens in Curtis and PJ Stoles, as well as the adults anchored by Donald Pleasance-- are replaced by unmemorable actors who struggle to stay with us as the characters and events of the first film did so beautifully.

     I only saw the movie once, and I have no desire to ever watch it again. The updated score is worth listening to as Carpenter's brilliance is timeless, but other than that, Rob Zombie's Halloween is something of an unsuccessful elseworlds story that I am comfortable leaving in the discount bin for all the years to come.

A Nightmare on Elm Street (2010)

     Since first appearing in 1984, Freddy Kreuger has had a long and varied legacy terrorizing teens in the A Nightmare on Elm Street films. He's fought Jason Vorhees from Friday the 13th, had offspring and even been brilliantly reinvented in 1994's New Nightmare. The one constant, however, until 2010's remake, was that the character of Freddy was played, always, by Robert Englund.

     I went into the remake of Nightmare with as much of an open mind as I could. I have long enjoyed the series and Englund's performance, but it had been many years since I saw a Nightmare film. Obviously, the most divisive thing about this remake is the recasting of Englund. Jackie Earl Haley's casting was blessed by Englund himself-- and, I found, the casting is actually the least of the film's problems. I didn't find Haley's performance problematic, and it is one of the reasons to see the film. This version of Freddy is darker (in terms of lightning, performance and story), and Haley's performance extends that, and works incredibly well. This Freddy is darkly menacing, and the fine line the production walks between having Freddy appear more like a burn victim but not too boldly associated with real-life burn victims is walked reasonably well. Freddy, like Michael Meyers and Jason, are our modern day monsters, and they will be recast for years to come, as Count Dracula and Frankenstein have been-- and will continue to be, as well.

      The script is good to average. There are some lines to be cringed at, but the younger actors are competent, and the older actors who add some weight to the production-- we're looking at you, Connie Britton-- do the best with what they can. The controversial decision to make no qualms about the fact Freddy was a child molester is not a bad one. It increases his malice and evil a great deal, and makes the actions of the parents more understandable.

     The end result is not a bad film-- and it is actually an affecting horror film in parts. The shadow of the original looms large, however, and it is never quite lived up to. If all we had was this remake, it was be hard to imagine we would have been given one sequel, let alone a whole film series spanning over thirty years. For fans of horror and the Nightmare series, this remake is respectable, and well worth watching. It is a shame we have not-- yet-- been given a proper sequel with Haley returning.

 Friday the 13th (2009)

     When the remake of Friday the 13th was first announced, I had every intention of going to see it. And I always meant to. When I embarked on my journey into the remakes, I knew it had been a few years since the movie had come out, and I'd had every intention of getting around to seeing it sooner or later.
     I was somewhat shocked it took me more than ten years. 2009's Friday the 13th, for apparently legal reasons, straddles the line between remake and sequel interestingly-- if not always deftly. The remake proper, or the rehashing and re-shooting of the story, happens in the first several minutes, before the title sequence. It wouldn't take much to have the script refer to the happenings of the first two films, and jump off from there as a sequel.

     Nevertheless, this is a remake the succeeds more than it fails. With Jason almost entirely masked by makeup or his iconic hockey headgear, the problems of recast actors that plague other films like Nightmare have never faced the Friday  films. There is not much original in this film-- younger people at a lake camp being butchered by Jason-- but there's also not much that is terribly bad. For the most part, the film feels like an unsteady, near return to form, that should have set off a few more modern sequels.

    Why it's been more than a decade and Jason has appeared in movie theaters is something I find curious.

Child's Play (2019)

     I have many opinions on the Child's Play films, and they are all over the place. The original trilogy decreases in quality, from an admittedly cheesy but effective starting point. The image of a killer's soul possessing an already creepy child's toy doll and running a murderous muck is a winner. In the 1990s, the later sequel  Bride of Chucky embraced the camp in a way the previous films hadn't-- to great success. The addition of a Frankenstein's monster's bride for Chuck in the way of Jennifer Tilly's character is a brilliant success, the kind of which the films in the franchise which came after never quite achieved.

     I was interested to see what would be done with the first legitimate remake of the Child's Play films. When your iconic horror star is an actor's voice in a doll, it doesn't seem to make sense to recast that voice; but, if you have to, you can't do much better than Mark Hamill. I was also excited to see what the comic talents of Aubrey Plaza, as the mother, would do in such a campy horror film.

     Apart from Rob Zombie's Halloween attempt, Child's Play was by far the worst of this crop of remakes. It swings big, often lazily, and misses all the same. I was willing to be game for this effort, but the film makes it nearly impossible to stay game. Done away with is the possessed serial killer angle, and in its place is a smart technology turned sentient and/or evil story, straight out of (but nowhere near the quality of) the Netflix television series Black Mirror. There may have been opportunities for a Bluetooth Chucky to be scary and entertaining, but this film does not find them.

     The script is at points laughably bad, such as when an entirely wasted (in terms of talent) Aubrey Plaza tells her son to go play outside, in the very urban city, at night under the street lights. This film also makes use of one of my least favorite horror tropes-- the murder of a family pet as an early sign to the threat's danger. The way in which this is done is so tasteless it turned me off from the film completely. Mark Hamill pardon the pun hams it up and tries to chew every last piece of scenery, but there is nothing in this film worth watching. Especially poorly done is the climatic brawl in a department store.

 Texas Chainsaw Massacre (2003)

     Disclaimer time. Of all the horror franchises here discussed, the one I maintain the least fandom in is the Texas Chainsaw Massacre films. I first saw Tobe Hooper's 1974 original film when I was a kid, and the impression wasn't a lasting one. I remember being disturbed by the images of slaughtering people as farm animals are (and worse), and how images of people being placed on hooks were not one I would want to relive by re-watching the films every October, as I do with many of the original films on this list. However, the original TCM movie remains a titan in horror and has spawned countless films that have attempted to do what it did.

     Which brings us to the 2003 remake, which I did see at the time of it's release. Without having a huge love for the films or the character of Leatherface, I found the film a surprisingly effective horror movie in its own right, managing legitimate scares and gross outs that rivaled the original; or, at least, stood on their own from the original. I found it incredibly interesting that the original's cinematographer returned to work on the remake. While Daniel Pearl's work in the original is realistic and almost documentary like for the 1970s time in which it was made, his take on a darker, more stylized cinematography for the film in 2003 adds intriguing dimensions of fear to the work.

     All in all, I still find the Chainsaw remake the most effective remake of this lot. Keep in mind the original I am not a huge fan of, and I appreciate passionate fandoms, as I myself am a part of many of them.

Tuesday, May 5, 2020

Scary Stories: "Mary's Monster: Love, Madness, and How Mary Shelley Created Frankenstein"

 Perhaps it has been the pandemic (well, very likely), but the Ghost has been reading more of the long to read list which awaits him on his shelf. I have finished a book.

 "Mary's Monster: Love, Madness, and How Mary Shelley Created Frankenstein" is a beautiful, haunting and primal look at writer Mary Shelley's life. I have to admit, that I have been a lifetime lover of horror, and "Frankenstein" has near biblical status in my person canon-- but reading this book was the most personal and informative account of Mary's life that I have experienced.

 A graphic novel, the text here is often prose, resulting in a long form poem that would work on its own but excels with the beautiful, ghostly yet alive illustrations showing the complexities of Mary's life, her loves, her sadness and her creation.

 In both film and literature, the story of famous writer creating their renowned creation has become almost a genre in itself. From Michael Cunningham's "The Hours" to the film and subsequent stage musical "Finding Neverland," there is an appetite out there for stories that show how literature's immortal came to be. In this graphic novel, Lita Judge does a fantastic job at not just showing the elements of Mary Shelley's young life that culminated in the novel "Frankenstein," but showing the complexities of how her life and experience led her to the ideas and philosphies her Doctor Frankenstein and his monster have played out for readers across the years-- and forever. will.

From her time as a neglected young girl, with a mother she never knew who would have been so proud of what she accomplishd and persevered through, Mary's life faced constant abuse. Her father, step mother, and later the poet Percy Shelley were all extremely volitale and abusive relationships through which she endured-- and managed to create. Life, in the form of her children and her writing. And this is all captured beautifully in this long form graphic novel. In beautiful black and white. 

The amount of research that went into this piece is daunting, and beyond the limits of commendable. The author's notes and bibliography at the end are worth reading in and of themselves. This is a must read for any lover of Shelley and her monster, and a brilliant piece I am sure I will often find myself returning to. Highly recommended for lovers of scary stories, and lives, art and work that goes in to creating them. 

Monday, April 13, 2020

Stay in Your Haunted Home

 Please, all you haunted hearts, stay home right now, and don't give into the urge to break quarantines and social distancing guidelines.

 Because we all have to hope against hope that Halloween, will not be cancelled this year.

 The loss of an All Hallow's Eve would be tragic in any year. However, there would be extra irony in the face that Halloween is on a Saturday, and we fall back during that night with daylight savings time, and would be afforded an extra hour of haunting.

 Please, stay home.