Zombies

I swear there will be new writing up soon, I’m working on finishing a slew of poems and have decided to serialize some of my short stories here so more people can read them.

In the mean time however learn about new podcast episodes of which I’m proud of!

In this episode David and Joshua are joined by self-proclaimed zombie expert DAN HENSLEY to discuss all things ZOMBIES.  Including our favorite zombie movies, comics, games, books, and more!

The trio also discusses their favorite types of zombies.

Are you someone who prefers your undead to be slow and menacing or fast and terrifying?  Are you a fan of the virus related zombification or would you prefer your brain-hungry ghouls to be of a more mystical origin?

We share our thoughts on these subjects and provide some sensible tips to help ensure you survive the inevitable undead uprising!

This episode kicks off our 2018 season of HORROR that will consist of a lineup of shows featuring a variety of spooky and frightening topics!

simpaticopodcast.com

zombie1

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Dread and Revelries of Spring

Below is a poem I recently wrote simultaneously with a short horror story.  The short story was read on Trio Simpatico, the podcast I co-host.  We produced the reading for our string of horror themed episodes in October, and a portion of the poem is used to close out that piece.

Both the story and the poem are based on a dream which my wife relayed to me one morning.  Her dream was splendidly cryptic and contained some really frightening imagery.  The short story, called Ghost Storm, is an elaboration of the nightmare as my wife told it to me, while the poem is more of an interpretation of the same basic ideas though most of the details are transferred to a completely different time and place.

If you’d like to hear our audio production of Ghost Storm click HERE I’ll most likely be posting the text here in the weeks to follow.

The poem is below the break, enjoy!

ghoststorm

 

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Unrequited Death – 1870

To celebrate the occasion of the day I present the following short horro story.

Last year this was turned into an audio reading by Jessica Burkhart and my podcasting partner David Tavolier for our podcast TRIO SIMPATICO but I realized I never posted the actual text anywhere.  So here you are, I present to you in full Unrequited Death – 1870 by me, Joshua Scott Witsaman.

If you’d like to listen to the podcast featuring the reading simply go HERE!

Happy Halloween!

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I Wish Every Day Was Halloween!

Halloween is approaching hopefully all of you boils and ghouls out there have your houses decorated, your candy bowls filled, and your costumes prepped.  Halloween is my favorite of the major holidays.  When October rolls around I try to bust out the skulls and pumpkin decorations as soon as possible, and the wife and I often disagree on how horrific the decorations should be.  Personally I don’t believe that any type of decorations should be blown out of proportion whether it’s a ridiculously involved Christmas light display, or a sprawling Halloween cemetery scene in your front yard with animatronic vampires, contrary to popular belief it is possible to over do it (and frankly your neighbors probably don’t want to look at your gaudy shit for a month anyway!)

I firmly believe that less is more, and that you can have some memorable decorations without going the Clark Griswold route.  The contention between my wife and I is how scary the decorations should be.  If it were up to me I would pass out the Trick or Treat candy between two poles decorated with mannequins made to look like impaled child clowns, along with a few skulls trickling blood from their eye sockets.  You know, nothing extravagant but enough to really hit home and creep the hell out of the kids that approach my doorstep.  If you want the candy, you’ve got to be brave enough to get it.  Lauren however is more inclined to do the whole family friendly schtick.  Some jack O’ lanterns, a Halloween sign on the door, and maybe we dress the puggles in goofy costumes (which is always a good time.)  Our decoration plans are seemingly in constant negotiation.

However despite my love for Halloween, and my enthusiasm for it, I generally hate this last week right before the big day.

It always seems like when October starts the world comes out guns blazing with Halloween excitement.  The weekends are chock full of horror movie marathons, costumes are on display every where you go, and the Reese’s pumpkins are seemingly around ever corner beckoning you to devour them.  As the weeks go on though, and we come to this last week before Halloween the ghoulish spectacle wanes.  It seems like there aren’t any good horror movies left on the upcoming television lineup, and the Halloween decor has already been put on clearance, torn apart, and decimated like a cabin full of virginal teenage victims who’ve fallen prey to a supernatural serial killer.  With retailers quietly displaying Christmas merchandise earlier and earlier each season, it has gotten so that when we’ve reached Halloween people are already bracing themselves for the X-Mas rush!  It seems like every year around this time I’m forced to summon forth my inner demonologist and take it upon myself to keep the spirit of Halloween bright and alive (or at least undead.)  Thankfully through my experience I’ve come up with a regular routine of grotesque activities that help me keep my thoughts dark and my nights sleepless!  Allow me to go over a few of them for you now.

Sign an exclusive deal with Count Chocula:

Like Peeps at Easter, and Candy Canes at Christmas, Count Chocula is a Halloween staple for me.  There was once a time when the Count and his buddies, Boo Berry, and Frankenberry could be found on the cereal shelves all year round, but those days are gone.  Now Count Chocula is a seasonal delicacy and I make sure to get as much of it as possible throughout the month of October.  There’s just something about chowing down on ghost and bat shaped cereal bits first thing in the morning that really helps keep the feeling of Halloween going!  Whether you’re a fan of the fumbling Frankenberry or the beatnik Boo Berry or the coco count himself, make sure to keep your shelf stocked with one of these, the scariest of the breakfast cereals.

I'm almost 100% sure this record won a grammy.

Blast the scary music:

While on my way to work I make sure to set my iPod up to thrill me with some of the best of my Halloween related music.  Things like the theme from Halloween and Night on Bald Mountain are good for creeping yourself out in the early morning darkness.   If you need a little lighter fair, but still want to hit your Halloween groove you can try bands like the Cramps, or classics like the Monster Mash, and Thriller.  A couple of groups that deal almost exclusively with Halloween type themes and who I’ve come to appreciate all year around are Zombina and the Skeletones and Paul Roland.  Musically they’re very different but they both have their own unique darkness that ranges from bizarre and humorous to just plain creepy.  If you’d like to learn more about them click on their links.

Are they a cool band? Yes, they are a cool band.

Horror Movies:

This one really needs no explanation.  Watch. Horror. Movies.  Everyone has their favorites with varying ratios of gore to scare as well as classic to modern.  So I’ll leave the choices up to you.  Oh, and Tim Burton’s Nightmare Before Christmas is a must as well, just be ready to watch it again in a few months when X-Mas rolls around!  AND There is a bonus this year (and hopefully for many more years to come) with the television series’ The Walking Dead and American Horror Story!  Two great ongoing dramas that have thus far been filled with plenty of great storytelling as well as well crafted horror elements.  With the modern wonders of DVR you could conceivably save up your recordings of these shows for the end of the week and have a horror drama double feature!  Both shows are unique and will give you varying degrees of “the willies.”

Only on episode 3, and I can already say this show is a favorite of mine.

Other Things:

Take Halloween into your own hands!  If you wait for this last week to carve your pumpkins it can really help to keep those nostalgic Halloween feelings going, and helps ensure that your pumpkins don’t look like the Crypt Keeper by the time Halloween actually rolls around (unless of course you carved it to look like the Crypt Keeper.)  Personally around this time I also like to delve into some fine demented literature.  It’s always a good time to revisit my favorite paranormal superhero, Dr. Strange and his supernaturally macabre adventures.  Also this year I’m working on completing the entire collected works of H.P. Lovecraft which happens to coincide nicely with the holiday.  Finally look back at some other media that fits the themes of Halloween, for instance I plan on  rewatching the episode of the Star Wars Clone Wars cartoon entitled  Legacy of Terror, which features zombie Geonosians.  There’s even an episode of Babylon 5 called Day of the Dead which features a strange occurrence aboard the station where the dead return to the world of the living for a single night.

Undead Geonosians prowling the catacombs in search of clone brains.

Basically when others aren’t getting psyched for Halloween, sometimes you’ve gotta psyche yourself up.  Remember that Halloween is more than just bad movies, girls dressed like sluts, and tooth rotting candy.  Halloween is a holiday that allows us to briefly acknowledge the darkness of the world, and of ourselves.  Halloween expresses death and allows us to come to terms with the fear of all of our inevitable destinies, and Halloween allows us to revel in the mysteries and instinctive imagination of the human psyche!

Happy Halloween everyone, make sure to scare the piss out of someone special this year!

That is all!

Friday Funny Pages: Don’t F#*%K With Shockwave!


Today I have another quick one for you.  I’ve got a job interview this afternoon and I don’t really have a lot of time, so I wanted to use a panel that needs very little explanation.  This week’s image comes to us from the old Marvel days of the Transformers comic books, this is second generation stuff if I’m not mistaken, but beyond that I have no idea where this panel comes from.  (As it turns out I was indeed mistaken.  The name of the issue was Second Generation but this has nothing to do with second generation Transformers stuff. Idiot!)

I found it awhile back while poking around on the Transformers wiki doing some research for my Terrordrome Renovation Project and I thought it was perfect for FFP.  If you’ve never paid a visit to the Transformers wiki, go take a look.  That site is full of some of the funniest one liners I’ve ever read.  It’s nice to see a fandom that doesn’t take itself or its source material completely serious all the time.  Too many fan groups delve into their subject matter with a scholarly discipline that is on the verge of delusion.  At the TFWiki they certainly have all the facts about whatever Transformer toy or cartoon series that you’d ever want to know, but every entry has more than a few heavy handed goofball captions, or mocking running jokes that bounce around between pages.  I’m not a huge Transformers fan, but it’s always amusing just to search around that wiki and skim some of the articles.  (In a correction, I originally called it a wikia, but it’s not.  But I don’t know what the hell the difference is.)  <To learn what the difference is, see the comments section below!>

Anyway I’m pretty sure this single image from the 80’s Transformers Marvel comic inspired the playground scene in Terminator 2: Judgement Day.  (Jokes!)  But this is terrifying, and I’m pretty sure that kid in the picture is a goner.  Them’s the breaks.

This panel has given me an idea though, I think this is going to start a new segment of Friday Funny Pages entitled:  Don’t F#*%K With _____!  Where the next few weeks will focus on characters with whom you should not fuck with.  Yes, I like that idea, that’s what I shall do.  Excellent . . . . .

That is all!

Worst Movie Universes To Call Home

Everyone has a favorite movie and some folks even fantasize about living within certain movie universes and partaking in the ideal settings or grand adventures portrayed on the big screen. Take me for example, I’ve got a whole life plotted out for myself should I one day happen to find that I’m living within the Star Wars universe. I would get a job at Cybot Galactica working in droid manufacturing, my wife would be a Twi’lek, we’d have a pet Ewok, we’d be model Imperial citizens, and there’d be a modest little prefab duracrete domicile in the rural outskirts of Tepasi that we’d call home.

But enough about that! We’re not here to read about my Star Wars RPG character, we’re here to discuss the movie universes that no one wants to live in, the most dangerous movie landscapes which if they were real, would surely claim the lives of all but the best of us. Of course as we all know movie universes operate under unique laws of physics that ensure the safety of all the leading men and lady types within them. But for all of us average schlubs and below average slobs these unreal realities would not be ideal worlds to call home.
Let’s take a look at what I believe are the top 5 most dangerous movie universes to live in!

#5- Any Zombie Universe!

Zombies suck. Rather, they bite, and how! It’s pretty obvious why living in a zombie infested world would not be cool. There are several different zombie movie universes and several varieties of zombies but they all have a few things in common. First of all, if you’re alive, you’re delicious. Zombies want to eat the living, that’s just what they do. Also they are mostly thoughtless, which means there’s no negotiating with them. That means zombie universes are the epitome of if you’re not with us, you’re against us. Second, zombies outnumber the living. Pretty much in every zombie flick whether it takes place in a small secluded town, or deals with a global undead outbreak the zombie-to-human ratio is tipped in their favor, not ours. In the movies no one seems to get their shit together to quell the zombie outbreak until half the population is already infected. Whompers. Finally, though zombies are undead creatures immune to pain they do have the “Headshot Weakness.” Everyone knows that if you put a bullet between the eyes of a zombie or bash its skull in with a blunt object, you’ll have yourself a re-dead zombie. That’s all well and good but that means if you want to make it in a zombie universe your ass had better be a class-A marksman or have decent upper body strength, but it’s hard to keep a steady hand when you’re constantly terrified and ones strength tends to get drained when you barely have time to eat and sleep between incidents of being chased around by the living dead.

#4- The Neverending Story Universe!

Now you might be asking yourself, “what would be so dangerous about living in this magical fantasy realm of friendly rock biters, talking tortoises, mystical princesses, and flying luck dragons?” and to be honest there isn’t anything inherently dangerous about the Neverending Story Universe, the problems occur when you remember that the universe of the Neverending Story is contained within a magical book, and that universes existence depends on said magical book being read. So if you live within that universe your entire existence depends on the reading comprehension level of whoever happens to pick up your book universe. Uh oh! Now do you see where the danger lies? People are stupid. Kids don’t read anymore! That was the whole plot of the first Neverending Story, the universe was being consumed by the Nothing, and if it was bad then you better believe it’s worse now! To be fair though it’s not really their fault they don’t read, what with teachers under tremendous scrutiny these days and testing standards which have deemed reading useful only for the purpose of answering questions presented in the various achievement tests. It’s surprising our society hasn’t already devolved into a bunch of proto-men speaking in grunts and monosyllabic phrases, only able to comprehend single letter text message style writing that is no longer then 240 characters. Needless to say I wouldn’t feel very secure living in a society that was based on the literacy of our culture. Though I guess there is a slight hope for the Neverending Story universe if they can manage to get their magical book onto a digital format, or better yet, simply convert their readership based existence into a viewership based existence powered by those who watch the movie instead of read the book. But alas that wouldn’t last very long either considering only nostalgic 30-somethings like myself still watch the movie, until there is an effects centric summer blockbuster remake of the Neverending Story I’d steer clear of setting up shop in that universe!

#3- The Godzilla Universe!

Unbridled destruction. Dispassionate stomping monster feet crushing thousands of people with each step. Battling monsters waging war with incredible powers that lay waste to countless square miles of cityscape with each uncanny blast. Well over thirty-five giant radioactive monster attacks have taken place since 1954 each more deadly and more destructive then the last! Does this sound like a world you want to live in? Clearly these people don’t learn their lesson seeing as they repeatedly fuck with nature or try to take advantage of the terrifying beasts of Monster Island. Though Godzilla and his cohorts seem partial to destroying Japanese cities they have not been solely limited to that island nation. Regardless, think of the constant fear the rest of the world would live with knowing that there were a great number of enormous monsters dwelling within the ocean that just need the slightest provocation to set them off on another rampage. The conventional weapons of man are useless against these behemoths and there is no environment on the planet which can deter them. It’s surprising that the petty human populace of the world haven’t turned to barbarism, fighting against one another and enslaving their conquered neighbors in order to offer them up as sacrifices to the unflinching monster overlords that could quite easily obliterate them without even noticing. Though this Lovecraftian existence isn’t quite what we have within the Godzilla universe, it is precariously perched on a razor thin edge and could topple into that type of maddening chaos at any moment. Who knows what world crushing tempest of impairment awaits mankind when the monsters decide to rise up again?

#2- The Alien/Predator Universe!

This one is a double whammy! Aliens and Predators. You can’t win with either of these guys. The future is bleak for mankind. Should we venture into the outer reaches of the cosmos we will inevitably run into the Xenomorph aliens of the Alien movies. However even if we seclude ourselves from the greater galaxy our strongest and most skilled warriors will still fall prey to the aliens from the Predator films, who scour planets for the most challenging prey to hunt and have found a favorite trophy with mankind. If you’re fat and lazy you’ll make a nice incubator for an Alien chestbuster, but if you’re fit and athletic you’ll find a tri laser scope aimed at your forehead. Worst of all is when the two species battle each other and Earth simply becomes the intergalactic proving ground to show which alien is superior, with us pitiful humans getting caught in the crossfire. The best advice I can offer if you chose to live in this universe is to really let yourself go, get off the diet, and forget the workout regimen but invest in a flamethrower and acid resistant body armor. Other than that, you’re on your own.

#1- The Matrix Universe!

Unless you’re one of the few resistance fighters who realize that you’re in the Matrix universe, then you’re already in danger! That’s right, within the Matrix every man, woman, and child has already been captured, bred, and programmed by the bad guys. The machines have already won and your unreliable genetic material is simply keeping things running until your body fails and you are recycled and your proteins are processed to feed your other pathetic human matrix-mates. But if you are brought out of the matrix and allowed to experience reality then the shit really hits the fan because you will be hunted down by the relentless programming and automated defenses that are in place to ensure that any rogue elements are dealt with swiftly. Though the resistance fighters are armed with a lot of wizard technology, gadgets, matrix tricks, and some cool characters dressed like badasses unless you’re Keanu Reeves, you’re still going to get your ass handed to you by Agent Smith and his evil omnipotent matrix constructs. In all honesty I still have not seen the Matrix sequels. I really enjoyed the first one and thought it was a really stellar idea for a movie. The action sequences were unique and groundbreaking and are still emulated and parodied to this day. I just thought it had a good ending point. At the end he realizes his full potential, he becomes aware of the matrix around him, he can control things, and he is a super powerful being within the matrix. A savior type of character who we just assume goes on to make quick work of the villainy within that universe, free all the unbeknownst slaves, and they all live happily ever after rebuilding the world that was destroyed around them. That however wasn’t where it ended and there were more movies. I just never got around to seeing them, and have since been told that I’m not really missing anything and so have stayed away. I can however tell you without a doubt that I would not want to actually live within the matrix universe. If I was stuck plugged into the matrix and still had to live this half-assed life, no thanks. If I’m going to be a brainwashed cyberorganic component powering some evil machine I at least want to be rich and carefree, not working some shitty 9 to 5 and hoping against hope that the wife and I can get the bills worked out this month. And I know for sure I wouldn’t have enough motivation to be one of the good guys, putting my life on the line to fight for some destroyed landscape in a post apocalyptic reality. You would literally have nothing to fight for. Everything you know and love is in the matrix and fake, and the real world is desolate and almost beyond repair. It’s a lose/lose situation at best as far as I’m concerned.

Anyway there you have it, five movie universes that I’m pretty sure no one would actually want to call their reality!

That is all!

Some Thing Old, Some Thing New.


     Today I had the chance to rewatch John Carpenter’s The Thing. It’s been several years since I’ve seen the movie and I was pleasantly surprised how well it still holds up. I know there are a great many people out there who hold The Thing to be the pinnacle of sci-fi horror movies. There are certainly plenty of reasons for someone to think that, and I won’t argue. Though I don’t think it is my personal favorite, it certainly is a quality flick. One comment I regularly hear that I have a small problem with however is that John Carpenter’s The Thing is far superior to the original. I’ve read that folks don’t believe it should even be called a remake, and that the 1982 version is such a completely different, better type of movie that the two are incomparable. As much as I have to admit that the newer movie is a much scarier movie with truly superior effects I think there are really far more similarities between them then most people want to admit. This is not at all to detract from Carpenter’s movie, in fact if anything it should add to his praises for such a boffo adaptation! John Carpenter’s The Thing should really be a guide for making any type of “reboot” especially in this day and age when it seems every movie is a remake. (And there is actually a remake of this movie coming out this year some time . . . )

     Both of these movies were a part of my childhood in different ways. My dad is older than most dads in my age range, and as such always watched the classic movie channels. Turner Classic Movies seemed to constantly be on one TV or another in my house growing up. The original 1951 The Thing From Another World also just happens to be one of my father’s favorite horror movies and since it was one of the few horror movies to be regularly shown on TCM I was exposed to that movie on a regular basis. Of course what youth doesn’t rebel somewhat against their elders? Though my parents loved TCM I was not a fan as a kid. I turned my sights to basic cable and the wonders of the late night movie. By the time I was old enough to be sneaking downstairs to watch late night TV John Carpenter’s The Thing was hitting the airwaves of basic cable and even that edited for TV version was enough to make me piss a little.  Needless to say it left an impression, and brought to mind the phrase “This isn’t your fathers Thing.”   (Which is just creepy when you read it.)

     Before going into the similarities of the 1951 and 1982 versions let me state one difference I really enjoy about the movies. The beginning. At the start of the original movie the arctic base camp investigates and subsequently discovers the crashed UFO and the frozen space man. That scene is one of the most iconic and chilling of old school horror. The music along with the camera pulling up to reveal all the men standing at arms length forming the perimeter of the massive ship encased under the ice still has an impact. Thinking about how movies were made back in the fifties it even adds something more to the effect of the shot when you wonder where and how they actually got that shot of that icy plain and the huge dark disc embedded within it. They of course take photos, then cut around the frozen alien and haul the block back to base where it thaws and mayhem ensues.
     That type of beginning really works for the time period. However I really like the first few scenes of Carpenter’s version. It opens with a helicopter flying over the snow as a gunner onboard tries to shoot a running husky down below. Already you know something is wrong. The copter pursues this seemingly innocent animal across the snow until they reach an American research base at which point the helicopter lands and the gunner in a frenzy continues to try and kill the dog. Grenades are tossed, bullets are fired, the new arrival’s helicopter is blown up, and the American research team doesn’t know what the hell is going on. Already they are in the middle of the mayhem, they just don’t know it yet. I always like those types of stories. Of course it all becomes clear later when they travel to the neighboring base where they find everyone dead and records full of exposition relating the modern details of this alien reimagining.

Now onto the heart of this tirade! Why you should love both versions of The Thing, and perhaps appreciate even more the work of Carpenter’s Thing.

-Setting
     An obvious one. Both movies are set in the Antarctic in a U.S. scientific base. This is an important element because this means that the characters are not only fighting some creature, they’re fighting the elements as well. A small group, fending for themselves, in the most secluded place on earth. I can’t think of anything more terrifying.

-Suspense Is Key
     Though both versions of the movie have their scary moments, what really draws you in is the suspense, an element both films make use of almost as soon as the movies start. In the original the main driving force for the suspense are the teams hand-held Geiger Counters which they use to track the alien through the base. Because of the time period the alien is obliged to be radioactive, and the gradually quickening pings of the Geiger Counters warn the men when the beast is approaching. This makes for some great moments as one of the men stares transfixed on the flashing screen while the others tensely check their surroundings waiting for the monster to come crashing through the wall at any moment. The ’82 version masterfully twists this intense suspense and mixes it with suspicion when they discover that their Thing can get inside of other living creatures, imitating and absorbing them devouring them on a cellular level. This creates fear among the men as they realize that some of them are not who they appear to be.

Robert Cornthwaite as Dr. Carrington

-Crazy Scientists
     Both movies have one wacky scientist who thinks he’s so much smarter than everyone else and thinks he has all the answers if everyone else would just shut up and listen to him! In the original that scientist is Dr. Carrington played by the eerie Robert Cornthwaite, who could be Dr. Quest’s evil twin. In the remake the “mad scientist” is Dr. Blaire, played by the one and only Wilford Brimley. 1951 – Carrington thinks he can reason with the alien, it is an intelligent being from a highly advanced society surely it will be open to rational discussion. He is wrong, The Thing kills him. 1982 – Dr. Blaire realizes fairly quickly that this alien is a high risk to not only their safety but the security of the entire world. In an attempt to isolate it Blaire tries to destroy all the radio equipment and their various modes of transportation. He is right. Unfortunately everyone else just thinks he’s lost it and attempts to stops him. The first movie was telling us not to listen to those God hating, free thinking, science commies. The other was saying, maybe we should have listened to the scientist, before it was too late. Very topical for their times.

Wilford Brimley as Dr. Blaire

-Creative Aliens in Cinema
     The two Things are quite different in each movie but they are both quite groundbreaking for their time. In 1951 any alien in a movie that wasn’t a martian or some kind of lizard was pretty unique. This alien evolved from plants and sought blood for its nutrients, a sensational idea at the time I’m sure. Though they don’t go into great detail about the Carpenter alien, there wasn’t any need to, it just sort of spoke for itself. That Thing was an effects masterpiece that tore into, digested, gored, and ripped its way across the screen and was groundbreaking in its style.

-Badass Leads
     Kurt Russell was just great in the 1982 movie, and it made me think about how many awesome movies he has been in. Does he intentionally pick cool, sci-fi, movie geek roles? Or has he just been typecast into those parts? Either way I’m not complaining. The ’51 version starred Kenneth Tobey an all-american military hero type who smoked cigarettes, barked orders, and killed ugly alien bastards. Both guys are badasses, though Kurt Russel is more of the Wolverine badass while Tobey was more of the Captain America badass.

-Dog Mutilation
     Kill all the scientists and military researchers you want, but when you kill an animal that’s when it really hits home with the audience. Both movies feature, pretty early on, some dogs getting eaten by hungry aliens.

-Fire Bad!
     Both versions make it clear that this particular brand of alien has no weakness for cold, it can stay frozen for thousands of years if need be. So if you want to kill The Thing, you’d better have some high voltage wires or a couple of flame throwers. This also creates a great dynamic between the setting and the action. There are several scenes in both movies where you have someone engulfed in flames stumbling through the blizzard conditions of an Antarctic storm.

-Memorable Endings
     Both movies have unique endings that leave the viewer with something to think about in terms of whether the threat is really over or not. In the original we are left with the now famous line “Watch the skies!” which is modern sci-fi legend. In the ’82 version we are left with an uneasy feeling due to the ambiguous nature of that films end. The final scenes of both Things leave the audience with some lingering questions and a few worries.

     So I guess what this has all been about is just me trying to tell you to love all Things equally. The 1951 The Thing From Another World and the 1982 The Thing have equal merits for different eras of filmmaking. John Carpenter clearly has a love for the original movie, as well as the original book “Who Goes There?” which both are based on. It is said that Carpenter based his take more on the book, than the movie however. I agree that John Carpenter really did a stellar job adapting the movie, and it isn’t simply some knock off attempt. I just hope that some of you also go back and take another look at the old The Thing and try to appreciate it for what it was at the time, and not simply as some old horror movie with bad special effects!  Oh and if this new remake/reboot/whatever is any good than perhaps I’ll have another post about it as well.

James Arness as The Thing (1951)