Archive for September 2022

National Comic Book Day!

September 25, 2022

I would be remiss if I failed to remind you that September 25th is National Comic Book Day! ‘Fess up now…how many of you grew up lingering over the pages of a comic book, and fantasizing about how great your life would be if you had a superpower…like, any one of them!

I had the rare kind of father who would actually bring me home a comic book or Mad Magazine occasionally when he came home from the store with the Sunday paper. It wasn’t just any comic book, either. Nope, it had to be a superhero one! My early years were spent paging through DC comics icons like Superman and The Green Lantern. Later, I would learn of the backstories of more obscure comic heroes like The Phantom and even Mandrake the Magician! “The Phantom is rough on roughnecks,” old jungle saying…

This led me down the rabbit hole in adulthood of discovering even more notable precursors such as The Shadow. When special effects reached a level where superhero movies were better than laughable, we were really off to the races with DC and Marvel characters, some more memorable than others, and renewing or finding new fan bases in the adult population…

And it all started with comic books, so remember this holy day. And I still have my Green Lantern ring, folks, two actually. If only the darn things worked, if only! Well, hope springs eternal, so they say…gotta keep trying! “In brightest day, in blackest night…”

“I’m Looking at a Werewolf,” from Terror in the Woods

September 9, 2022

Terror in the Woods isn’t a bad show, although it’s largely for entertainment value, with documentation sparse and scientific rigor non-existent. The episodes vary from ho-hum to compelling, and if you select the episodes of your viewing carefully, you may find them worthwhile and even compelling to watch…

Season 3, Episode 3 of the series first aired in September 2021, and it’s hard to resist the luring title of one segment, “I’m looking at a (bleeping) werewolf, and it’s trying to kill me!” Well, it turns out that the werewolf in question is kind of the Louisiana bayou variety, which stands about 7′ to 8′ tall, and has larger-than-human-like features with a wolf-like head. Known as a Rougarou, such shape-shifting creatures appear human if sickly in the daytime, reverting to a werewolf form at night with a thirst for blood. ..

Now there are as many ways to become a Rougarou as there are ways to spell it, with methods involving the classic bite to a witch’s spell. The cultural background of the creature is rich and diverse, originating from tales told by French Canadians in Louisiana to keep their kids in line, and out of the woods at night! – – Gotta keep the little buggers scared to get them compliant, ‘ya know!

While Rougarou have some commonalities with both vampires and traditional werewolves, they differ as well. They’re unbothered by silver bullets or religious artifacts, and to kill one usually requires decapitation and preferably burning or severe mutilation of the body.

In the series episode, a young guy hits on a strangely feral girl at the clothing store where he works, booking a date with her that evening. The hours pass but the girl never appears at the appointed site, so the guy plays basketball with other guys at the site for four hours before leaving with them at midnight when the court automatic lights go off. Hearing an unnatural noise behind them, the guys perceive something threatening and inhuman, and attempt to run away. One slips and falls, and the creature is upon him. Seeking to save their comrade, one of the others pulls a .38 from his pack and fires at the beast, because this is ‘Merica, after all! The presumed Rougarou is driven off but not killed, and the narrator of the tale suffers from nightmares thereafter…

So if you’re Louisiana-bound, enjoy some cool jazz and hot Cajun cookin’…but beware of the Rougarou, especially if you unknowingly arrange a date with one!

Pee-wee Herman Turns 70!

September 1, 2022

You tend to either love or hate Paul Reubens as his character Pee-wee Herman, and I have to confess being a fan. His character is a man-child, and falls into that category of people you might call cheerfully demented. Pee-wee is to me an amalgamation of all of the strange kiddy show hosts that I grew up watching, being drawn into their world, and accepting their twisted reality.

Peewee’s Playhouse ran for several years in the 1980’s, and was always a refreshing departure from reality. With his too-small gray suit, red bow tie, and white shoes, Pee-wee helped us navigate his twisted, surreal world of anthropomorphic chairs, pterodactyls, and iconic sidekick stereotypes such as Cowboy Curtis, Captain Carl (a grizzled sea captain), and Miss Yvonne, The Most Beautiful Woman in Puppetland. “We’re all mad here,” as the Cheshire Cat might say...

Paul Reubens is not just a one-trick pony. He has played a number of other roles, including a cameo as a waiter in The Blues Brothers, “The Spleen”in the movie Mystery Men, and the father of Batman villain The Penguin (above). He is scarcely recognizable in the latter role…

As The Spleen (above) in Mystery Men, Paul Reubens’ character had the superpower of, err…powerful flatulence, sufficient to render people unconscious…

So happy 70th birthday, Paul Reubens! And when you hear the Magic Word for the day, remember as Pee-wee reminds us, to scream real loud! 🙀


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