Sunday, July 31, 2016

The Nosferatu Adventures s10 p24

The Nosferatu Adventures
page 272, chapter 272

Out of Time
The Van Helsing Boys

Landin woke up in a cold sweat. The air around him making his ears ring, threatening to pop. He hated when this happened, and in the last few nights since they'd come to town, it had happened every night. Sitting on the edge of the bed, he shoved the covers off, rubbing the heel of his hands in his ice blue eyes, failing to will away the headache that was beginning to form. Getting up, he crossed to the little bathroom digging through the pink flamingo printed fanny pack for the tiny bottle of pain pills he had taken to carrying. They fell crashing to the floor as the bleached blonde male braced himself against the sink counter, a stabbing overtaking his left eye that seemed to drag down into his jawbone. Instinctively he reached for the cell phone that was still on the edge of the sink peeking out of his bag, hitting the redial button.

"What up?" Seward's voice came through the machine.

"Come get me." was all the older cousin was able to say as he was now doubled over on the floor both hands to his eyes; a pressure in his ears.

"You alright?" the younger male asked hitting a button on his end, activating the video. "I'm on my way. Hold tight." It seemed like forever that he lay crumpled on the floor, his brain pulsating, a heavy heat in his stomach threatening to over take him. Landin could do nothing but rock back and forth debating with himself if he should just give in to the vomit. The whole time, the back of his neck feeling like a million pin pricks. The room became so cold he feared his skin would freeze to the floor, a sound escaping him. A strangled cry forcing him to look up.
The room seemed to blur out of focus for a long second, the light suddenly flooding his view, as images collided. A woman hovering just inches from his face dressed like she was from the 1970's, a man appeared behind her naked except for a towel, both mixing like an overlay hologram over Seward. The younger male now standing in the doorway. Landin felt the pressure behind his eyes begin to let go, the vice grip easing as the familiar voice echoed now in the tiny bathroom. His younger cousin's strength the only thing grounding him once again to reality as he lifted him up off the floor.  "I'm taking you to a doctor."

"No." the bleached blonde shook his head slightly, wincing from the action. "Just take me to a pharmacy. I'll get something for the headaches." he stood still hunched, the nausea releasing it's hold on him. The back of his neck still tingling with the million pin pricks, causing him to turn from the mirror. Their grandfather used to tell them that mirrors were the doorways to other spiritual planes, which always sat buried just under Landin's thoughts.

"I knew you staying at a hotel was a bad idea. What were you thinking?" Seward moved from his cousin grabbing up all his stuff, shoving it haphazardly into his bag. "You going to admit now that you've got some talents?" the younger male made a sound as he tossed a shirt at him. "Hotels are filled with..."

"Don't say it!"

"...ghosts. And you dude, are a ghost magnet." Seward pointed at Landin, his voice filled with both fear and anger.

Landin grunted. "What time is it?" he struggled with the shirt one sleeve getting twisted.

"Just after eleven am. The clerk was coming to knock to tell you it was check out time, otherwise I wouldn't have gotten in. He said you slept through the wake up call, twice."

"Just help me get out of here will you, save the lecture for later."

They sat in the strip club,  Landin still looking a bit green, a pair of dark glasses barely protecting his now delicate eyes from the bad lighting. At lest he thought, the air conditioning was a plus. "I can't believe you brought me here?" he complained to his younger cousin. It was the last thing he was in the mood for.

"Come on. Dude, not like anyone's going to notice you or anything." he reached over tapping his cousin's arm. "I'll buy the first round."  Seward turned trying to get the waitress's attention.

Landin was still feeling less than himself, as he leaned on the edge of the bar, music blasting from somewhere in the corners of the building. "This was a bad idea." he mumbled under his breath as he got up walking out. The afternoon sun felt like a personal assault as he walked out into the way too brightness of it, having to angle his neck so that the gap of the sunglasses didn't let any of it in. Spotting a shorter male exist the building behind him, he sidestepped to let him pass. The dark haired male stopped right beside Landin, smiling at him.  "Am I in your way?" the bleached blonde asked forcing himself to stand to his full height, towering over the other male.

"No. I just want you to talk dirty to me." the smile became this too confident grin, the male too calm. Landin ran his tongue over his teeth as he sized him up. He figured he'd be able to take the guy down with one punch, but he really hoped it didn't come to that. In fact, one wrong move and he might just end up puking on him instead. The back of his neck feeling once again like a million pin pricks, his stomach in knots. The guy continued to stand there, his eyes locked on him. The bleached blonde male found himself more than once having to deal with things like this, men thinking he was for rent. Most were harmless and backed off the second he said no. Landin was about to leave, turning from the guy, just as the man reached out with his right hand as if to touch him. Feeling the need to defend himself, Landin shuffled his left leg back just a millimeter, swinging a punch. The guy ducked moving so fast Landin didn't see it, a pale hand now around the blonde's neck forcing him back against the wall of the building. Knocking the wind out of him.

He couldn't understand it, the guy was so much stronger than he was, so much quicker. "Fine we'll skip the small talk. I want what you've got." The Seer replied moving his free hand over Landin's body, stopping just under his ribcage. "Right here that's the juicy part." he whispered his palm pressing hard into him, at the same time the hand still holding his neck wrenched the bleached blonde down to his own height.

He could do nothing to fight against The Seer, as he forced the taller male to open his mouth, kissing him. Only it didn't feel like a kiss, as much as it felt more like something was being ripped out of him, hooked and dragged up his esophagus, choking him.  Landin slumped to the ground, his glasses falling off forcing him to close his eyes against the sun as it back lit the guy. Crouching down on his heels, The Seer wiped the corner of his mouth with his thumb, his eyes flashing that of the wolf. "Now that's how I like my snacks, packed with protein and not a drop spilled." he continued to smile in that too confident way of his, his dimples showing.

The guy was gone, as if he'd disappeared into thin air by the time Landin caught his breath.

The bleached blonde stood outside of the police station, unsure if he should go in. He wasn't even sure why he had gone there. Embarrassed about what had happened outside the strip club, he'd bolted when he'd spotted Ruthven arrive, not wanting his cousins to see him. At the very lest, they'd ask way too many questions on why and how he'd ended up with bruises. But, the three cousins had made it a point in the last few years, of making sure they had at lest one friendly cop on their side, in whatever town they found themselves in. As they never knew when they might have to call in a favour because their grandfather had been arrested yet again for claiming there were vampires.
Letting out a deep breath, Landin entered the building, just as a female cop asked if there was anything she could help him with. It caused the male to freeze in his tracks. He wasn't prepared to be charming, to flirt and bring up the topic in a casual manner. Instead, his brain seemed to shut down on him, his voice getting lost in his chest. All he could manage was to stand there letting the embarrassment of the whole ordeal flush his cheeks and ears. Hugging himself, Landin was about to retreat, rethink his approach.

"I've got it." the male's voice said gently forcing a smile from the female cop as she backed away. Turning  Landin saw that the cop in question wasn't much more than a few years older than himself, blonde with strange grey streaks at his temples. The guy was standing with a coffee in one hand, his other gesturing towards a door. "Something tells me you might be more comfortable talking to another man." he smiled weakly at him.  Landin swallowed hard as he caught the innuendo. He took another half step back, but then thought better of it. Sure, let that be what the cop thinks. Why not? It made more sense than trying to explain that he'd just been what; mugged by a vampire?  Nodding he cast his eyes down following Arthur into the other room.

Tune in again for another installment of the Nosferatu Adventures starring your up story. Yeah, I'm putting my characters through hell)

night bleeds July

This month's vampire book club movie club selections were Carmilla, and Disney's Hocus Pocus.

I was asked how these two stories fit together to form a combo?  Honestly, beyond being female vampires, I didn't really have a link. I know there were more than a few movie versions of Carmilla out there, but some of them were just too difficult to get copies of, others were soft core porn, so I opted for a different route and just went with the idea of a female vampire.

BookCarmilla by Sheridan Le Fanu - plot : When a young girl has an accident outside of an estate, her mother begs the owner to let the young woman stay for the next three months with him and his daughter Laura. The young Laura, who has never really had any friends, and knows only the servants of her house, is more than eager to take up the request. Before long, a young woman in the village fails ill and dies. Upon her funeral, when Laura begins singing a Christian hymn, Carmilla becomes angry informing her that not everyone is of that religion, nor does everyone find that kind of music enjoyable. Laura then begins to have dreams, which start causing her to question her new friend's nightly habits. Soon, more women in the village begin to become ill and die. At the same time, Laura's father gets a letter from his friend, imploring they meet him at the nearest castle ruins belonging to the family of Laura's mother. When they do, he tells them about the same series of incidents that befell his own daughter only three months before, causing her own death. Upon seeing Carmilla, the older man chases her away with an axe, claiming her the same fiend who brought the plague to his village, claiming she's secretly a vampire. Priests are then brought in to deal with her, freeing the area of the vampire that has haunted them for over a hundred and fifty years.

So the big theme here, and what the story gets noted for is the hinted at not so subtle lesbian theme. There are paragraphs where the lead character of Laura, talks about how she's kissed and embraced by Carmilla, saying that she is both comforted and repulsed by the actions. You also have the idea of erotic dreams, that the women are all giving accounts of. Each saying that they felt as if they were swimming in cold water with the current running against them, right before the dreams become night terrors. Both topics at the time of the book's release in 1872 (but first published as a series in 1871 in a monthly magazine penny-dreadful style) that were considered very taboo.

What I have always liked about this story, is the fact it brings in folklore. Such as the vampire needing to return to it's burial spot for so many hours a day, and that the vampire can be out in the day, just not at noon. And that it must have so much direct moonlight (a major theme in Polidori's short The Vampyre) within the 24 hour time frame.  Carmilla also becomes a cat, which according to folklore, is one of the forms a witch may take when astral projecting. (which became the basis for the witches familiar as they were feared to take the lives of sleeping children). Astral projection was/is believed to be the real way physical vampires were able to move around, explaining why they didn't decompose and why their coffins would be found drenched in blood. As the astral self reconnected to the physical self, the blood could not be absorbed.
It also pulls from folklore that when you commit suicide you become a vampire after death. (another reason witches were burned at the stake so their souls would not have a body to return to after death)
We see the use of the anagram; as Carmilla is an anagram of Mircalla; which is another form of grounding the spirit to the original body, as it's believed that names have great power over demons.(and in this case used in much the same way Dracula uses the soil of his homeland)

I've always assumed that the reason Carmilla only feeds off of women, is because they are easier to get close to in that frame of history. It wasn't uncommon for a teenaged or unmarried woman of any age, to be left with friends or family for any length of time. We never see her even attempt to seduce the men, and I have always put that down to the fact society wouldn't have allowed a young woman to be alone with any man other than her own father.
One thing I've always hated about the story, is there is no explanation for the mother and servants that seem to always accompany Carmilla. Are we to believe they are another extension of her powers? It would explain why she refuses to remove her mask at the ball.

I have also always felt the reason she does not right away kill Laura, is because she is a descendant of the countess's family. We learn midway through the story, that Carmilla's family is connected to the area, and that Laura's mother a member of the Karnstein's. (movie version even go so far as to have Carmilla possessing the human doppelganger)

MovieDisney's Hocus Pocus: plot-  After taking the lives of the children in the village in order to live forever, three women are hanged. Seconds before their deaths, the oldest sister Winifred casts a curse stating that when the magickal black candle is lit, they will return on a Samhain night; and get their revenge on the village.  Three hundred years later, a group of teenagers unintentionally activate the curse. With the help of an immortal cat, the teens manage to outsmart the three witches before they can suck the lives out of the town's kids.

Okay, I know at first glance people are like "Hocus Pocus is about witches not vampires."  But take a second, think about it. What is the main purpose of the spell that the three witches are casting in the beginning of the steal the lives of children in order to live forever. And this is done the same way that any energy vampire would. By literally sucking the lifeforce/soul out of someone. Add to it that they come back from the dead, and you've got classic vampires here people. Before hollywood focused on the blood drinking aspect of vampirism, most folklore did focus on the energy draining, which ironically, was blamed on witchcraft as much as it was ghosts.

One of the things that is half way a throwback to vampiric folklore, is the fact they are resurrected on the same spot they were killed on. This can be tied to the idea that in some folklore, the vampire needs to be able to return to it's burial grounds.
Folklore also states that if you were a witch or werewolf in life, you automatically become a vampire in death. Other ways include a violent death, be it suicide or being murdered. In the case of this movie, the three sisters are lynched by an angry mob.

Like many vampire stories that focus on a female vampire, the use of seduction is heavily coated. In this case, the younger sister of Sarah, who is considered the "pretty one" lures away Winifred's boyfriend, which leads Winifred to take his life out of jealousy. He later returns from the dead as a zombie still caught under her spell to a point.This again, can be harkened back to the classic vampire image, of a master (think Dracula) and fledgling (think Lucy) or servant (think Renfield) who are left with a battle of wills for the fledgling's freedom. In this case of zombie Billy, who literally has no voice as Winifred sewed his mouth shut.
Sarah also the one who "seduces" the kids to begin with by singing. (Again I'm left to compare this with Dracula, given Lucy feeds off of young children/babies as do the three vampire brides. As well sirens are considered a type of vampiric creature, given their nature to kill and sometimes consume their human lovers)
A connection can be drawn too between the scene where the three sisters are hanging out with "Satan" to Dracula and his three brides. The offerings being in a more innocent way, of the chocolate than the infamous crying baby that Dracula secures for them. (and to the wife's disapproval which can be paralleled to Harker's complete horror of seeing them with the baby)

The three sisters, in typical movie fashion, are destroyed by sunlight. Their return from the dead, is limited to only being out at night, and because they fail to secure the lifeforce they need before the sunrises, they are turned to stone and explode. Much like the typical film versions of vampire stories we've come to expect, where sunlight is feared because the vampire will implode. 

I find it ironic, that they in turn curse their enemy into being a cat; who ends up "protecting their house" from anyone who would try to light the magickal candle. As already mentioned, cats were considered either witches themselves or the spiritual protectors of witches.The character of Binx, is thus trapped between life and death in immortality, like any vampire victim in classical vamp mythology, being it folklore or hollywood.

That I think is enough from me this time around. I'm sure I'm forgetting a ton of stuff. I realize, I do not have the typical photo of the combo, but my copy of the book is part of a collection of horror stories, and the cover is just plain I didn't see the point in that.
Okay, so don't forget next month's selection is Let the Right One In.  The book and movie.  And I've decided to stretch the rule on the dvd part, anyone who wants to part take in Let the Right One In, can watch either the original Swedish movie, or the English remake Let Me In.  I will be covering both so... but I'll be back later in the week with the official post for that.

Friday, July 29, 2016

The Nosferatu Adventures s10 p23

The Nosferatu Adventures
page 271, chapter 271

Out of Time

Our heroine felt the weight first on her chest, then her legs forcing her to open her eyes. The blinds were shut still, but it was more than clear to her that it was after ten in the morning. Someone in the apartment was cooking, the smells of eggs and coffee filling the air. That, and the hot dampness of wet dog. Moving her arms she growled as the little pup yelped jumping from his spot by her shoulder. The hellhound wagged his tail happily, as he jumped down from the bed and out the half opened door.  Just before a large snort came from the other male in the room.
The female banshee tried to sit up, finding the task nearly impossible, given the fact the large auburn wolf was draped diagonally across her. "Damn it Dagan." she shoved at him managing to barely wake him up before sending him flying off the bed completely.  A very human hand reached up over the edge of it within seconds, as the male pulled himself up off the floor.

"What I do?" he asked clearing his throat. Our heroine leaned over rolling onto her hip as she stared at him.

"I didn't hear you shift." she said flatly. "Normally, there is so much screaming from you when any of you shift. But you..." she gestured towards him and the fact he was in human form. The male blinked a few times as he looked around the bedroom, standing to his full height, scratching at his naked butt. "Not what I needed to see first thing this morning." she continued to climb out of the bed. "Just when did you wolf out? And what put it in your mind that it was okay for you to climb into bed with me?"

"I didn't climb into bed with you." he brought his hands up to his face running them length wise palms down as if smoothing something out. "I got on top of the bed. You just happened to be laying there already." he shuffled his feet as if wiping them scratching then at his stomach. He yawned continuing to talk. "Thought since the rest of them were all over the living room, being in wolf form would be easier to curl up. Save some space." Dagan crawled across the bed laying back down, dragging the covers up around him. "As far as the no screaming while changing shape, I'm as surprised as you are. Pleasantly I might add. If that's my one real draw back for being in this reality, I can totally live with it." the auburn haired male sprang back up following her towards the bedroom door. Nosferatu felt the air being squeezed out of her as he hugged her from behind. "Now, about that fact we still need a pack alpha." He pressed his nose against her ear, barely breathing his words. "I have no problems taking down those two pretty boys out there, trust me on that." he sniffed her shoulder closing his eyes, only to open them again exposing the amber-grey of the wolf. "But then, we wouldn't need an alpha anymore because there wouldn't be enough for a pack."  Our heroine snarled as she brought her own delicate hands up wrenching at his fingers forcing Dagan to let her go. "That wasn't very nice." he shook his left hand, before bringing it up to lick the few drops of blood.

"Pants!" she screamed over her shoulder at him. "That goes for anyone else in this apartment who is not currently wearing any, human or otherwise." she stated angrily as she opened the bedroom door, surveying the situation. Dagan magick misted a pair of shorts as she did.

Vlad was standing at the kitchen table dressed in a pair of jeans and a t-shirt, a large atlas open in front of him, while Edric, Quentin and The Seer were sitting scattered around the living room, each with a large plate of food on their laps. None of them had been willing to stay at the occult shop, all fearing what the other might do in their absence. Our heroine just couldn't believe that Vlad had let Dagan near the bedroom. When Quentin and herself had arrived back at the penthouse, Edric nearly bowled her over; the sire bond controlling him and Vlad almost ripped his throat out because of it. Stopping the  fledgling short of giving her a hug; his comment being about forgiving Edric on account that the sire bond was to blame. Vlad seemed to still believe he had some sort of claim to our heroine; even though she'd clearly thought otherwise. She hadn't expressed her plans to send Vlad back to his own time. In fact, she hadn't discussed it with anyone.

Dagan stuck his head out of the bathroom door. "You going to shower before we leave?" he asked rapping his knuckles on the doorframe.

"Leave for where?" our heroine asked as she dodged the puppy on her way to the kitchen.

"The occult shop." the auburn haired male replied.

"I didn't have any plans to go there today." she poured herself a cup of coffee. "Besides, we've got to find another place to live. Loki isn't going to be happy that we've taken over his."

"What does he care?" Quentin remarked getting up with his now empty plate tossing it in the sink. "You said he put you up here because he was here keeping an eye on Edward, since Pan is no longer possessing Eddie, then Loki doesn't need to be here anymore am I right? He's a god..." Quentin shrugged. "What does it matter if you move us in?"

"We need a place with more bedrooms." our heroine protested. "Since none of you are willing to be apart from each other like little kids." her voice took on a snotty air.

"Deal with that later." Dagan interrupted. "You going to shower or not before we go to the shop."

"What do we need to go there for?" she made a face dumping the coffee down the drain. "Vlad made the coffee I'm assuming?"  the prince commented that he had. "You never were much of a cook love." she replied grabbing the electric tea kettle filling it with water. "Tea it is."

"We have a play date with a magick mirror. And trust me." he bent at the knees rolling his eyes. "The kid is prompt! He totally gets that from Rolf. You can set clocks to the kid. Seriously, I have." Dagan's eyes went wide.

"I don't want to go. I don't need to see him." our heroine breathed the words.  Dagan ducked his neck just a centimeter as he started to move towards her.

"Excuse me?"  A hush seemed to collectively settle through the penthouse, as all ears were on them. He smiled his eyes crinkling at the corners."That little boy just wants to see you. Just for a few minutes. He's been waiting his whole life for the chance." Dagan's eyelids fluttered as he gestured towards the wall. "It's literally all he's talked about." he rolled his wrist a few times licking the corner of his mouth. "Well, all he's communicated about. The kid can't actually talk, he's mute." the male scratched at his neck. "Draws pictures all the time you. Little stick figures."

"Yeah well I've got no interest in seeing him. So I'm not going."

"Oh you're going." he nodded towards her taking yet another step closer, his finger in her face."I promised that little boy we'd be there in front of that mirror so that he can spend some time with you." closing the gap between them, Dagan growled his eyes still the amber-grey of the wolf. "He's had nine years of uncle Rolf  and uncle Reuben teaching him about the packs, nine years of learning to read and write with uncle Finn. Nine years of stories about what it's like to have been a pirate from uncle Harker. Nine years of god only knows what from uncle Victor twisting his mind up." he licked his lips again his breath hot as it slammed into her face causing her to tremble. "Nine years that little boy has waited for you to come home. Every holiday, every birthday, waiting. Nine long years of disappointment because of you." he brought both hands up palms upward, taking a half step back on his heel before letting his hands slap his thighs in disgust.  The kettle sounded as steam released into the air causing everyone to stir. "Make sure she doesn't try to leave. I'm just going to take a piss." He turned back towards the bathroom, rotating his shoulders as he did, sniffing deeply, as he licked his fingers before trailing them across the wall marking his territory.

"Quentin. You stay here with Vlad and Edward. Edric, you're coming with us." our heroine said her own eyes now having changed to the pure white of the banshee. "Let's just get it over with."

"And that folks, is why being sired sucks." The Seer said with a smirk, his own hand slapping his thigh. "So um...who do I get to eat around here?" he brushed an imaginary crumb off his shirt standing up. "Change of plans, Quentin, how about you and I take Vlad here to the strip club while they go off being the blood sucking Brady Bunch." he slapped his hand on the back of the red head's shoulder. "Well, actually, I guess we'll be the blood sucking Brady Bunch. Energy suckers in any case. You with me?"  The human swallowed hard, then began to relax his shoulders, as The Seer's touch worked. The Seer still wasn't up to full speed, but his natural Sidhe ability to seduce was starting to shine.

"Strip club." Vlad tilted his head to the side turning his entire body towards our heroine. "And you're okay with this?" he raised his hand towards himself. "Me going to a...den of ill repute."

"Actually, it was my idea to send him there before. I shacking hate it to be honest, but it's that or else let everyone run wild in the streets killing everyone they see." her eyes were slits as she turned from the prince. "You feed just enough to get you through the weekend. We're all moving! Just as soon as you all get back. Quentin, that means you too. And I need everyone clear headed understood." she snarled letting the magick mist surround her just as Dagan exited the bathroom.

Tune in again for another installment of the Nosferatu Adventures starring your up story. Anyone else have the line from Lost Boys in their heads right now...)

year 5 day 171

movie: My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2
starring: Nia Vardalos, John Corbett
genre: Comedy, Drama,
year: 2016
format: Shaw Video On Demand

plot: While struggling to keep her life together at learning her teenaged daughter has decided to leave town for college, a mother feeling suddenly useless, learns her own parents marriage isn't legal.

While the first movie was a great big romantic hit, about a shy woman who finally learns to come out of her shell and land the hot guy, this is trying too hard and just feels like it's trying to cover too much. Which ironically, is what its character is trying to do.

We see that the marriage is strained because this woman who in the first movie, fought for her independence from her family, is once again trying to be the glue holding everyone together.  From smothering her daughter in the same fashion her parents did her, to being the one looking after her own parents needs, and taking on the responsibility of their family business.
This to me, would have worked better if it had picked one of the two main bookends here, and just worked with it. Focusing on either the strained marriage because of the kid leaving, or because of the parents' needs.

The actual wedding element in this feels rushed. Almost as if it had been tossed out and brought back in, much the same way the one character treats the whole idea. There is a little side note, where they make the great grandmother look beautiful. In the first movie, and pretty much all of this one, she's a frumpy looking widow. Then for the last scene, she's dressed more stylish then some of the younger female characters have been through out. You almost wonder if that's a set up for what is suppose to be the trilogy ender. And at this point, I think having used the great grandmother's love life as a story plot would have been a hell of a lot funnier.

what did I learn? I'll still sit through anything if John Corbett is in it

Thursday, July 28, 2016

year 5 day 170

movie: Urban Cowboy
starring:John Travolta, Scott Glenn
genre: Drama
format: TV Edit

plot: When a young cowboy is injured during a construction job, he is left watching his marry fall apart.

It seems this is based on a news article.

A few things went through my mind while watching this. One, was the oddly repressive relationship between the main characters, their fight for domestic dominance. Each having their own ideas of what the relationship should be. Which, given the era the film was made, was a big theme in culture. Women finally getting a chance to prove themselves.  And the other thing, was the beard. The first few minutes of the movie has Travolta wearing this thick beard that I'm guessing is suppose to represent him as a rebel. Which, seems to loose it's power once its shaved off, having his character become the one trying to conform everyone else.

It seemed to get a bit pointless after the first fifteen minutes, focusing on a bull riding event. I don't really know if that was the point of the movie itself, or just the way the tv edit angled it? But, that part of the movie sort of lost me. I wasn't too sure why the wife had the affair to begin with, or why she'd let herself go from the oppression of her marriage to the outright abusive relationship she ended up in?

what did I learn? I wish I had something deep and meaningful for this today, but I couldn't get past the beard.

Wednesday, July 27, 2016

The Nosferatu Adventures s10 p22

The Nosferatu Adventures
page 270, chapter 270

Out of Time
The Van Helsing Boys...

Seward was the youngest of the three cousins. He had a wiry frame and a mass of dark curls piled on top of his crown. Which is why he wore his grandmother's lace scarf around his head as a hair band. He'd once auditioned for a local boy band, but just didn't have the right look for it. In the end, he'd been stuck working for their grandfather at the family book store. It had been almost a year since the three cousins had been together. Both Ruthven and Landin had gone to the same college, studying anything that would get them away from the family store. For Ruthven, that had meant a job as an assistant for a travel magazine, and for Landin that ended up being butchery. He hadn't planned on it becoming his future, just something to help pay the bills during his last year at college. Somehow, he'd ended up inheriting the small deli from his former boss when he retired.
With their Grandfather's death, the three found themselves thrust back into the weirdness they'd all tried to escape.

"Something in this town is just not right." Seward commented as he watched Ruthven packing a large cardboard box.

"Oh not again." Ruthven rolled his eyes as he crossed the room to empty out the next drawer in their grandfather's dresser. Carrying the stack of shirts back to the bed, he began sorting them for packing.

"You can't tell me that you don't find it just a little bit suspicious that he sent us his journals like less than a week before he died?" Seward replied.

"No. He knew his health was done for, so he started taking care of ..."

"What? Taking care of what?" the younger male asked raising his chin.

"Stuff." Ruthven shook his head getting another stack of clothes from the next drawer. Something fell on his foot as he turned from the dresser. The two stood there neither wanting to look at it. Still holding the pile of clothes, Ruthven closed his eyes letting out a deep sigh. "Please tell me that is a sex toy and not..."

"A wooden stake." Seward answered as he tapped it with the toe of his shoe. "Just like in the movies." he bent low on his heels reaching for the chunk of wood. "Eww." he crunched up his nose. "Is that teeth marks?"

"Great. Just great." the older male tossed the pile of clothes on the bed, one hand at his hip, the other pinching the bridge of his nose. "This going to be like the time in Wawa? Huh? Are we going to have the police telling us some horrible story about how Grandpa attacked some innocent person because he thought they were vampires?"

"That was different. It ended up being a group of actors doing a horror movie." Seward nodded as he stood back up, the wooden stake in hand.

"What's different?" Landin asked from the doorway as he brought them each a coffee. Seward held up the wooden stake tossing it back and forth. "Another one? I just found three in the den." he gestured towards what used to be a medium sized tree branch.

"This blood?" Seward replied handing it to him. Sniffing it, Landin smirked, enjoying the look of disgust on his younger cousin's face.

"It's not human blood. You spend as much time cleaving chops like I do, and you can tell the difference. That's pig blood. I think that might have been the bait stake."

"Bait stake?" both Seward and Ruthven asked at the same time.

"Yeah. He talked about it in the journals." the bleached blonde shrugged as he took a sip of his coffee. "Same idea as baiting a fishing hook. Dip the end in some blood, and see what it brings you. What?"

"You're talking like him. Like it's normal or something. I loved him, but he was bat crap crazy." Ruthven said pointing to his temple.

"I don't know." Landin said tilting his head to the side letting out a sigh. "His journal entries seem sane enough."

"So you just want us to sit here and agree with the idea that there are vampires out there? Real life vampires?" Ruthven threw his hand up as he moved across the room heading for the door, placing his coffee cup on the bedside table as he did. "You two are as crazy as he was. I'm going to the store I need some air."  They watched him walk out of the house, slamming the door as he did.

"I don't know how much air he'll get at the store. I mean, it's all dusty and stale." Seward remarked as he scratched at the back of his knee.

"When exactly did you move here?" Landin asked still nursing his coffee.

"Only about a month ago. Why?" the younger male answered turning towards the closet, letting his shoulders drop as he opened it. "Want to see what I found the other night?" he began rummaging through the hangers, pushing the suits to the side."Why did he keep Grandma's mink?" Seward asked as he tossed the little fur shawl at the other male. Knocking on the back panel of the wall, it sprang open. Gesturing towards his older cousin, Seward took a step into the hidden room.

"Okay, seriously if you're about to tell me Grandpa was into some sort of  S/M thing, I really don't want to know...whoa." Landin's blue eyes lit up as Seward hit a light switch, flooding the small space with a brazen orange glow. "Is that a coffin?"

"Yeah. Not only that, it's like hundreds of years old from what I can tell." the dark haired male nearly skipped towards it, placing his palms gently on the lid. "It's humming." he reached his right hand out grabbing at his cousin. "Touch it. Dude you've got to feel it." his voice became a sing song.

"Yeah. I'm good." Landin moved his own hands out of reach, locking his fingers behind his neck. "I'll take your word for it." He continued to move around the hidden room, reading labeled jars, flipping through files, tapping a fingertip against a glass box that held jeweled daggers. "So this is where all his money went then?" he picked up a small metal cube that looked like it came out of one of his favourite horror films.

"Seems so. But huh, can we not tell Ruthven just yet. I'd kinda like to keep some of it you know. And he'll have it sold in a heartbeat." Seward pressed his forehead to the coffin's lid, closing his eyes before taking a half step back spinning on one foot making a grunting sound.

"Yeah, we can divide it after...this is interesting." the bleached blonde whispered as he picked up a large book. "I'm surprised he didn't have this on display at the shop." he held it in his hands, the weight of it surprising. The book was bound in what looked like a tanned leather, a small oval in the middle of the front cover. Landin licked his lips as he gently flipped the whole thing over in his hands, his fingertips delicately trailing over it. He figured from the shape and size, the discolouration must have been from some sort of family crest or amulet. Opening it, he had to tilt the book towards the light, the print faded in places. "How's your German?" he asked over his shoulder.  Seward's breath hit his ear in a hot rasp.

"That's not German. It looks more Welsh or something. Gaelic I'm guessing." the younger cousin nodded towards the book still in Landin's hands. "Dude, really?" he pointed to the mink that was now wrapped around Landin's shoulders.

Tune in again for another installment of the Nosferatu Adventures starring your up story. What or who is in the coffin?)

year 5 day 169 (zombie day)

movie: Scouts Guide to the Zombie Apocalypse
starring: Tye Sheridan, Cloris Leachman
genre: Comedy
year: 2015
format: Netflix Canada

plot: When a town is suddenly struck by an unknown virus that turns everyone into flesh eating zombies, it's up to three boy scouts and one cocktail waitress to find a way to stop it from spreading.

This film is right in there with Zombieland, Return of the Living Dead, Zombie Strippers and Monster Squad. It's like the best ideas from all these just rolled into one.

This is one of those movies that are for fun. There really wasn't a whole lot of "the moral of the story" going on, other than not to prejudge anyone. We see the scientist who is "containing" the virus in the beginning, being momentarily stupid, by leaving the undead dude for a bag of chips. Turning his back on the lab. You just want to yell at him to look behind him. Lest I did.  There is another scene later on when the two main characters hit a deer on the road, assuming it's totally dead, only to have it jump up and kill their scout leader. It's like horror 101, never assume anyone is dead-dead.

I have got to say, the whole Dolly Parton thing the scout leader has going on, was never fully explained. I don't know if he was obsessed in love with her, or if he was suppose to be obsessed female impersonator? But props to the props people for finding so many bits of Dolly Parton collectables.

There are a few sexual jokes, that although are really funny, such as the extendable zombie penis, that actually distract from the action. You're in the middle of what should be this extreme panic mode, and then the gag reminds you this is a bunch of teenagers.

what did I learn? It's a good idea to always be prepared for everything.

So, as my title says, it's zombie day. My friend Heather, over at All Roads Lead to the Kitchen, has started a group of posts called In the Kitchen with Zombie Fiction.  Basically, zombies are to her what vampires are to me. When she said she had in mind to cover this movie, I told her I'd jump in this month.

I didn't see a whole ton of food in this, but here's my notes : vending machine snacks, mints, beer, hot dogs (mentioned) canned beans, deer, chocolate, marshmallows, water, alcohol, poptarts, pork, bacon (mentioned) tacos (mentioned) and a full corner store of convenience food.

I wasn't too sure what to do for this one, but I just could not get the scene out of my head where the neighbour played by Leachman, looses her dentures while attacking the one character, gumming at his arse. The fact there is a lot of convenience food in this film, had me thinking along the lines of something out of the vending machine.
I also have this theory that soup is the ultimate survival food. If you can find a few ingredients and water, you can make soup.  So, I ended up going with a version of a black bean soup.

1 can of black beans, drained
1/2 cup frozen hashbrowns
half a green pepper chopped
1 small onion chopped
1/2 cup frozen mixed carrots and corn
1 can tomato paste
corn chips for the side

As I said, I drained the can of beans, because I personally do not at all care for the "black colour" you get when using them. It's unappealing to me on so many levels.

I really wanted to give this some cute little title to tie it in with the whole Dolly Parton theme in the movie, but I just could not think of anything.

Okay, so don't forget to run over to Heather's blog now and see what she came up with.

Monday, July 25, 2016

The Nosferatu Adventures s10 p21

The Nosferatu Adventures 
page 269, chapter 269

Out of Time

"Ugh!" our heroine slapped the muck off her hands. "I hate dirt." she mumbled as she continued to dig.  It was well into the middle of the night, the air hot and sticky from the lack of coolness. "I think this might be deep enough." she grumbled some more, tossing the shovel down.  Quentin said nothing as he climbed back out of the hole grabbing the container. Holding the glass medical jar up to his face, he turned it around in the moonlight.

"You really think this is going to work? That Pan is dead?" he shook the jar watching the formaldehyde slosh. "It looks like a walnut."

"Careful! Don't drop it!" the female screamed.

"You're immortal. What's it going to do to you? Besides, formaldehyde is in pretty much everything in small doses."

"Yeah, but it's also made up of silver, which is dangerous to vampiric creatures and werewolves. Which is why that little bit of tissue there smoked when you dropped it in." she huffed as she reached for the pail of cement; she gestured for him to place the jar into it. "And he's a god. I don't expect him to be dead-dead. I just expect this to contain him for the next hundred years or so."

"Until what? Someone digs him up?" he replied as he started to shovel the dirt back on top of the hole. Our heroine shrugged nodding. "We need to get this finished before the sun comes up. Last thing we need is to be caught." the red haired male commented. Our heroine sniffed as she caught the scent of sweat beginning to roll off the male.  It was enough to make her nose twitch.

"That and I need to get back to Edric. The sire bond will have him climbing the walls by now, it's been over three hours any longer and he'll come looking."

"So, how does that work? I mean, if you're sired to Dagan, and Edric is sired to you..."

"Dagan and I are no longer bonded in that way. I mean, so much crap has happened that he didn't have a choice, he had to get Bacchus to undo the bond. I don't blame him, I really don't." she gave a little giggle as she filled in more of the dirt. "It took a while for us to be affected to the intensity Edric and I have already been. I think that's because Dagan outsmarted himself right off the bat." she said half dreamily.

"What do you mean?" Quentin asked as he let out a defeated grunt sitting down in the dirt.

"Dagan has this thing about dreamcatchers. And he makes them out of whatever he can find. Twigs, bones, stones, feathers, hair...he had made one for whatever reason and tied it to my wrist when he thought I was dead the first time we were separated."  Quentin shrugged forcing our heroine to sigh closing her eyes. "He'd used his own fur for the strings. So there was a piece of him with me. We were technically never separated the first few days. It wasn't till much later that we discovered how bad the sire bond can make you react. Hard to believe it was eleven years ago already."

"May I just say, gross." he looked up at her from the corner of his eyes. "Okay, I've got to ask. Please don't kill me, and I mean that literally...but..." he gestured towards her. "I mean, no offense but, you're not exactly Marylin Monroe or anything. So how is it..."

"I get asked that all the time, don't worry about it." she shrugged sighing yet again. Our heroine felt she might as well just stop talking and only communicate with grunts and sighs. "Two things. One, as Finn pointed out years ago, I'm a limited supply."

"Finn...the one guy from the mirror right?" Quentin nodded to himself answering his own question. "Continue."

"Right, Finn. He pointed out back those eleven years ago, that supernatural females were few and far between. There are almost no female shapeshifters at all, which is why Loki wanted me to begin with. Male werewolves can mate with any kind of female they want, but they can only reproduce with a female werewolf. That, and there are two ways to become pack alpha. One way is to challenge another to the death, the other is to have a supernatural female for a mate. The second thing is, I'm descendant from both Loki and Bacchus's bloodlines. Which in short..."

"Makes you a god." he interrupted her.

"Makes me a god. And that is catnip to pretty much everyone and everything in itself."

Quentin snorted. "So, then these guys don't actually love you, love you? It's a spell or something?"

She stopped shoveling and stood there leaning on the handle squinting at the human male. "I'm wishing I hadn't agreed to not kill you. You're really getting on my nerves." she growled. "Or something. Look dude, even...even the strongest love spells run their course. Then, it's how you chose to respond you know."

"And how are you choosing to respond? I mean, I just stood here listening to you talk about Dagan, and I've seen you react to hearing Arthur was in trouble. How you were around that other guy Vlad, and how you were with Edward. Learning about your being with Loki..."

"Dude, enough of the play by play. Would you like an little table in the corner over there and a microphone..." she gestured with the end of the shovel to where he was still sitting in the dirt.

"So, what's next?" he asked scratching at his ankle.

"I don't want to think about what's next. I just want to grab a shower." she grunted nodding to herself that the container was safely buried for the time being. "Let's go."


The two men stood in line at the club. The one with the jet black hair and beard casually brought the cigar to his mouth, dragging deeply before blowing the smoke into the face of the club's bouncer.  "We're on the list, check again. V-A-N -H-E-L..." he stabbed his finger into the clipboard after each letter, before the bouncer turned away from them completely. "Hey! Hey I'm talking to you..."

"Let it go man." the bleached blonde said as he took a half step out of the crowd, reaching for him.

"I don't want to let it go. I want to be in that club." he protested as he felt himself being dragged a few steps down the street. "Where are we? I think you got us lost." he continued to pout.  Sighing, the bleached blonde shook his head reaching into the little pink flamingo printed fanny pack, retrieving a compass and map. "What are you doing with that?"

"Grandpa always said to be prepared." Landin remarked.

"Yeah but why can't you use a digital map like a normal person?" Ruthven continued to mock him.

"They are unreliable. Besides, if you can track something on the phone, you can be tracked." He stopped abruptly, turning a half circle. "The hotel is this way." he pointed left without looking. They made it another two blocks before Landin stumbled, grabbing onto his cousin's shoulder. "Something doesn't..." he looked around the nearly empty street the back of his neck feeling like a million pin pricks.

"No. You are not going to start with that crap again. I heard enough of it from Grandpa. You're not a medium, you can not detect ghosts because there is no such thing." Ruthven puffed on his cigar some more out of habit. He started to turn when he stumbled himself, the back of his neck feeling like he'd just jumped into a too cold shower. Both found themselves staring captivated by the female figure down the street. She was walking with a red haired male towards an all night coffee shop. "Besides, who's ever heard of a ghost that drinks espresso?" he gestured suddenly feeling a heaviness in the pit of his stomach. The cell phone in his back pocket buzzed, causing him to jump letting out a small yelp. Answering it, the dark haired male closed his eyes in frustration. "Seward. What do you want?"

"Hey guys. I just finished installing the computer system into Grandpa's old car. Thought you might like to know." the teenager was practically dancing around on the other end of the call.

"Great. We'll swing by in the morning." Ruthven snarled at him as he ended the call. "Unless your ghost hunting will get in the way." he remarked over his shoulder towards Landin.

"I'm telling you, somethings up around here. Grandpa moved here for a reason..." the bleach blonde said suddenly exhausted.

"Yeah, he was senile. All those years claiming he was hunting supernatural creatures. Next you're going to tell me that he was on to something..." he puffed on the cigar again.

"He was on to something." Landin said tilting his head to the side. "Otherwise, he wouldn't have sent us his journals." he slapped his one hand on the back of Ruthven's shoulder. "Come on. I need sleep. We'll finish this in the daylight." he headed again towards the hotel. Ruthven sniffed, shrugging as he turned to follow. But something was still sitting uneasy in the pit of his stomach as he turned full around, watching the doorway of the coffee shop for a long second; before turning back around to catch up to his cousin.

Tune in again for another installment of the Nosferatu Adventures starring your up story. Yeah, Paragon Pro Wrestling was on, so we've got vampire hunters now...)

Sunday, July 24, 2016

year 5 day 168 (Food n Flix July)

This month's Food n Flix selection is Popeye, and is being hosted by the Lawyer's Cookbook

The One Movie A Day Challenge part:

movie: Popeye
starring:Robin Williams, Shelley Duvall
format:  online

plot: Popeye comes to a small port town looking for his long lost father. Along the way, he ends up adopting a baby and falling for the landlord's daughter. Soon, they find themselves battling Olive's ex boyfriend's rage, as he taxes her family into the ground.

Okay, I'm not going to lie, I had a difficult time sitting though this one. I've seen it once 36 years ago, when it first came out at the cinema, I was six. And didn't remember anything from it other then I hated it then.   I honestly don't understand what it was that seemed to keep Shelley Duvall in movies back in the day?  She's unfunny, untalented and like a walking skeleton. The only reason she got this film was because she looked like the cartoon character to begin with.
I heard a rumor that not only is this up for a remake, John Cena is up for the lead role of Popeye. (please let it be just a rumor) I think this movie should be buried under some dinosaur bones in a tar pit and forgotten it ever existed. But, if a remake happens, John Cena would make sense as the new Popeye. At lest he wouldn't have to pad his arms or anything. And how fitting, given I think a potted plant has more talent.

What do I think I learned?  I will never like musicals ever.

The Food n' Flix part:

The Food: hamburgers, carrots, canned broccoli, salt, canned spinach, garlic, "olive oil and sweet peas", ketchup, milk, fish, potatoes, shrimp, chicken, meatballs, beer, bread, eggs, turkey leg, whiskey, mustard, rose punch, toothpick-sandwiches, tea, peanuts, popcorn, "castor oil", pea soup, octopus.

Okay, so my recipe got derailed four different times. The heat here has been unbearable, but I finally decided to give something a try, anything! Specially since I missed out last month. So I went pretty damn simple with a Garlic Mashed Potato Cake.  Basically, it is a veggie version of a fish cake. Nothing special. But I did manage to use 4 of the items seen in the film.

I sliced up a couple large baking potatoes, and boiled them in salt water till soft, then drained them.
Added butter, minced garlic, and milk (I used almond milk)

and added a bit of chopped up onion and ground black pepper.
 Shaped them, and fried in a bit of olive oil. They were quick, simple and so tasty.

And this is the part where I get to tell you, next month's selection is Hotel Transylvania 2...take a wild guess who's getting to host that one...right, right.

Wednesday, July 20, 2016

year 5 day 167

movie: The Money Pit
starring: Tom Hanks, Shelley Long
format: Netflix Canada

plot:After a couple are forced to move out of their apartment, they buy what at first seems like their dream house, only to find out it really just needs a wrecking crew.

This is like the ultimate buyer's remorse story. Only, it turns the straw to gold in the end. The lead characters are living in her ex husband's place while he's out of town, and have to vacate when he finally returns. While they are trying to fix up the place, their relationship is tested to it's limits, from the construction crew living with them, to her ex trying to win her back, to loosing all their money.

This makes you ask yourself "what's really worth it?"  Both the lead characters find themselves more than once, trying to get through what seems an impossible situation, which at any point either could just give up the dream. And at a few points in the story, they do only to find themselves right back where they started.
They are given this opportunity for their dream house, that seems too good to be true. Which of course, in the light of day, they realize it really is. The stairs cave in, there's no water, holes in the ceilings, etc. The more issues the house has, the more they find themselves wondering if they are doing the right thing? Are they with the right person? And when they both get conned into a lie by her ex husband, they believe the worst in each other. It takes a total stranger to set them on the right path again. This of course brings up the whole idea of "you don't always see the forest for the trees".

what did I learn? Sometimes you've just got to go with your gut, and take the chance.

Tuesday, July 19, 2016

year 5 day 166

movie: The To Do List
starring: Christopher Mintz-Plasse, Scott Porter
genre: Comedy, Drama
year: 2013
format: Netflix Canada

plot: When an over achiever high school student decides she's going to loose her virginity to the hot guy she works with, she also decides to learn everything she can about sex first.

Isn't that sort of the goal of all teenagers? Have as much sex as you can before you get out of your teens?  Was it funny? Sort of. It had it's moments.

It's set in the early 1990's, when sex was still a bit of a mystery to the average teen, unlike today where the internet has exposed...all puns intended...everything. This almost feels like it's trying to be another version of Sex in the City, but doesn't really make it.  The lead character keeps turning to her friends for some advice, but they end up knowing less than she does. Their innocence seems to be focused through their big desire to do nothing but watch the movie Beaches before heading off into the real world.

The other main theme here seems to be not just taking control of your own sex life, but knowing when to keep emotions out of it and when to let them run wild. Or at lest it seems to up till  the end, where it's almost as if the writer/producer/director had to figure out how to sew it all up in a neat little bow, because the lead comes to the big conclusion that emotions are everything.  As she's caught between the guy she's crazy about and the best guy friend she's been "using" all summer who's crazy about her.

what did I learn? I will never understand the appeal of the movie Beaches.

Monday, July 18, 2016

The Nosferatu Adventures s10 p20

The Nosferatu Adventures
page 268, chapter 268

Out of Time

Our heroine stood there head tilted to the side, as she just stared at Reuben through the magick mirror. She's seen him over the years in dream like visions from Rolf's point of view, but it had been years since she'd seen him with her own eyes. It was comforting.

"It was crazy. Just bizarre." Finn said from just outside the frame of the mirror, his shoulder the only indication that he was standing there. "One minute the kid is dying, like puking up blood dying, and the next..." he slammed his hands down on the desk. "Totally fine."

"That's because of the curse." our heroine replied closing her eyes reluctantly.

"Right, the reason he was sick..."

"And the reason he got better. There can only be two Frankenstein children a generation. Two sons. The fact he got better means this thing." she gestured opened palm to her middle. "Isn't anymore. A Frankenstein I mean. It's Pan. Totally and utterly."

Reuben sniffed as his chocolate brown puppy dog eyes shifted back and forth in thought. Flicking his hair first out of his face, he then tied it back in his trademark too smooth to be human ponytail. "I have another question. Um, does Harker know about this?"

"I don't follow?" our heroine replied leaning closer to the little mirror in the kitchen.

"Well, two sons a generation. The curse makes sure of that by killing anyone who would be a middle child. We have proof of that right, your other children..."

"Loki's liter. I was just the portal." she felt her teeth grind together.

"Sure not bitter about that at all." the dark haired werewolf said clearing his throat. "But, back to my point. Um, Dagan and Harker brothers. One generation. You were sired to Dagan, which started your connection to the Frankenstein line, then it was re-enforced by Victor's saving your life, with the blood and all the yadda yadda yadda blah blah of it." he rolled his wrist and his eyes as he continued. "You were his mate. You and Dagan, technically were married by the claiming and the sire bond. So this is the whole reason the kids keep dying. These would be" he brought his fingers up air quoting the next line. "Dagan's boys. Which means, Harker's not going to be able to have kids. Or at lest if he does, those two..." he pointed towards the wall, his arm disappearing into the frame of the magick mirror. "will die."  Reuben ran his hand over his beard. "Harker looses here. The one reason he was always off limits for turning into a werewolf, was because Dagan wanted to be sure his brother had a normal life. With a family. That's never going to happen, unless the curse kicks in again."

"That is such a rain on the parade." Finn commented, now sitting just behind Reuben on the desk. "But the big question is how are we going to deal with Pan?" his right leg started to swing in the same sort of hypnotic pattern as a tail would have if he'd been in cat form. "There is no weapon created that can kill him. No single spell. It took Loki, Bacchus, Odin and a few other gods to kill Pan the first time. And then what...two familiars working non stop for how long to just contain him in one of the most powerful beings alive, after he possessed him." he let his hand slap his thigh in exhaustion. "There is nothing magickal known to us in this reality that will do the job."

The female snapped straight, standing as if someone had pulled strings on her. "But this reality has something that one doesn't." her pale features seemed to almost glow in a too eerie way as she brought both hands together up to her mouth. "Quentin!" she screamed.  The redhead appeared in the doorway of the kitchen, a box of gingersnaps in hand. "You know your way around the hospital right?"

"Yeah, sure." he shrugged. "Why?"

"You and I are going to do some family planning at the women's clinic."

"Oh field trip." Dagan said leaning in the doorway, knocking Quentin a step into the kitchen as he grabbed hold of the top of the doorframe with both hands. "What time we going? Do I have time to wash my hair?"

"You're staying here. You need to look after Vlad. This is a two man job." our heroine commented closing her eyes.

"Why does he get to go?" the lycanthrope nearly pouted.

"For one, he's the tour guide. And two, if this goes wrong, I don't want any other supernatural beings in possessing distance. I'm betting on the fact that Quentin is human will be a deterrent from Pan wanting to body jump again."

"Huh. Good point." the werewolf nodded, staring at his shoes. The air around them shifted, as he let go of the doorframe, standing straighter himself, running his hands through his hair fixing it, slicking it back a bit. Squaring his shoulders, he stood with his feet slightly apart hands folded in front of him, as if standing suddenly on guard. Our heroine felt the reverberation of the chair scrapping on the floor before the sound processed in her brain. It was followed by a light but urgent tapping on the other side of the mirror. "Buddy!" Dagan said gleefully.  Nosferatu took a half step towards the door, but Dagan refused to move. She was trapped. Leaning in the male pulled her tight to him, his hands suddenly around her hips, as he forced her to turn around. She felt the weight of his chin as he planted it on top of her hair. The gesture was as much to show he still had dominance over her as it was to keep her from running away. "See, what did I tell you." he patted her hips. "the skirt needed to be bigger."  Damen gave a silent giggle as he tilted his head to the side. "But look at you, you gotten taller. I haven't been gone that long."  the kid nodded holding up his hands with one finger down. "What...what is that?"

"He's nine now. You missed his birthday. It was two weeks ago." Reuben answered from behind the kid."July 1st"

"Maybe I have been gone that long?" Dagan replied. The auburn haired male felt the female go completely rigid in his arms. "Hey buddy, tell you what; we've got some stuff we need to finish talking to with uncle Reuben there but I promise you, if you ask the yarn curler behind you..." Finn snorted at the remark catching Dagan's wink. " bring you back this time tomorrow I promise we'll hang out some more."  Damen thought about it for a few seconds before turning to look at Finn. Nodding, the familiar agreed. Turning back to look at the two the kid scratched his knee before bringing his hand up to his mouth and blowing them each a kiss. Jumping down from the chair he ran out of the room. "Speaking of kids. How's the other one?" Dagan asked.

"William is fine. You'd never know anything had been wrong with him. Maxwell is with him." Reuben responded.  Our heroine's face became a mask of disgust.

"Maxwell?" she asked. "What the hell is he doing there?"

"He jumped through the portal with his kid when the others were dying."

"His kid?" our heroine asked. "Look, whatever he's told you, don't trust him." she tore herself away from Dagan's grip pushing past him.

"No worries about that." Reuben remarked under his breath.

Tune in again for another installment of the Nosferatu Adventures starring your up story. Everything comes up to breathe at some point.)

year 5 day 165

movie: Ghostheads
starring: Tom Gebhardt, Ernie Hudson
genre: Documentary
format: Netflix Canada

plot: We follow fans of the Ghostbusters, as they live their lives inline with the morals of the film.

Dude, I've got to say, outside of Trekkies and Jedism, I didn't know other fandoms ever went to this extreme. I should have, let's face it, it's pretty common now to live your fandom.  In this case, it's not just collecting the movie extras, or meeting the actors; it's full on building the Ecto-1 and being that city's Ghostbuster.  It seems these guys are the ones doing the charity events for sick kids, holiday parades etc, and being extras in films.

The thing with documentaries, there's nothing to say. It's a documentary.  The one thing I guess I can point to in this case, is that unlike fans of Star Trek and Star Wars, who have a fictional "culture" and "religions" that they have turned into real spiritual paths, fans of the Ghostbusters, are more hands on. These are the guys who become the volunteer fire fighters and emergency medical teams. 
Someone in the documentary makes a comment about how when you see it for the first time as a kid, you don't go I want to be a ghostbuster and deal with hunting ghosts, you want to help people. I would have actually liked to have seen the other side of that expressed. Those who really did get into the science/metaphysical because of it.

what did I learn? Everyone wants to be a ghostbuster, some of us just decided to actually study the occult and paranormal.

Sunday, July 17, 2016

year 5 Day 164 (what that movie inspired me to do 48)

movie: Ghostbusters
starring: Bill Murray, Harold Ramis
genre: Comedy
year: 1984
format: DVD

plot: When a group of paranormal researchers stumble upon a doorway to the realm of the dead, they end up having to use all their resources in order to save New York from an apocalypse.

Ghosts, hauntings, paranormal research...before it was trendy. I love the little nods to H.P. Lovecraft in this, with the idea of having a cult from the 1920's and the names of the gods. Zuul and Vinz Clortho. (very Cthulhu) and to Aleister Crowley (the fact the two possessed Dana and Louis have to use sex magick to open the seal/gateway) There are hints of real occultism running wild through this whole film.

At the time this originally came out, it was more acceptable to be talking about cults than it was the paranormal, so it's no wonder they made the plot run around a long dead cult leader who wanted to bring about the end of the world. (and maybe a little prophetic too given the last decade) as society was still coming off the Manson Family and the fear of cults were the topic de jour.  Another big theme that was everywhere back in the 80's was the little man vs the corporations. In this case, you've got the team having to battle the environmental protection agency; who are trying to (and succeed for a brief time) shut down their main containment vault. This was also a point in society where "environment issues" was starting to really become catch phrases in the headlines. So basically, everything that you remember hearing in the news back in 1984, found its way into the film, be it in your face or just hiding under the bed.

Of course, I have to mention the fact we have a "keymaster" who is male, and a "gatekeeper" who is female, going back to the idea of ancient fertility rites, that a lot of old societies had. Every pagan religion, believed in the duality of things. In this case, it takes both the male and female "joining" in order to "bring forth" the third element which is the god.  (sex magick still the strongest form of power raising)

This would have never made it as a straight up horror. Weird to say, but it needed the comedic elements for it to be digestible at the time.

what did I learn? Class Five Full Roaming Vapor

This is also the second round of 80's Day! Totally tubular. Really, did you think I would pick anything other than the original Ghostbusters given it's Ghostbusters week?

notes: chocolate bar, coffee, whiskey, lettuce, mineral water, eggs, cereal, celery, marshmallows, pears, pasta, cookies, mustard, mayo, ketchup, parmesan cheese, pickles, soy sauce, pop, cheesy-nips, beer, popcorn, peanuts, casserole, lunch meat, yogurt, jam, pudding cups, cheese, ground beef, salad dressing, Chinese food, pastries, sandwiches, cake, tea, salad, chicken, spud (mentioned) "jello mold" (Slimmer) wine, rolls, duck, carrots, spices, onion, stir-fry, potato chips, twinkies, sunflower seeds, salmon, dip, juice, bagels, soup, pancake mix, pizza, hot dogs, fruit basket (mentioned)

okay so my first instinct was to do a rice crispy treat with vegan marshmallows, only they don't sell those here. So I actually tried to make my own vegan marshmallows. The treats tasted great. BUT, even with being in the freezer for over 8 hours, the second I took them out, they fell apart, and no amount of "shaping" them worked.  So that left me scrambling trying to figure out a new recipe, and I was desperate not to have to switch movies and start all over.
We see cans of soup in one of the kitchen scenes, and plenty of veggies so thinking of how to tie that in, all I could think was Slimmer.
Oh yeah, I went there. What I ended up going with was a version of a green goddess soup.

Slimmer's Soup

ground black pepper
cream of asparagus soup
water and almond milk

As always, I just rough chopped everything, and had a few cheats.  I used half the package of the cole slaw, which had both green and purple cabbage as well as carrot, and half the package of spinach.
As well as about a half cup of both the broccoli and cauliflower.
Half a medium onion, and one stalk of celery.

I cooked the veggies down first for about 45 minutes, then added the cream of asparagus soup and almond milk.  I have to say, at first it had a beautiful shade of green once I added those two ingredients, but the almond milk separated and the colour went back to a darker shade.

So I'm not alone in this 80's Day theme post. As always, my friend Heather over at All Roads Lead to the Kitchen, has made something too. And this this is always my favourite part of the whole challenge; neither of us has told the other what movie we decided to do today. So head on over to her blog (here) and see what she has on the stove...awesome.

Saturday, July 16, 2016

year 5 day 163

movie: Ghostbusters (remake)
starring: Melissa McCarthy, Chris Hemsworth
genre: Comedy
year: 2016
format: Cinema

plot: After being fired from her job as a professor, Dr. Gilbert is forced to take a job with her former best friend, Dr Yates, in checking out the legitimacy of a hunted house. With the help of Dr. Holtzmann, and city worker Patty, they discover a plot by a mad scientist to open the portals between this reality and the one of the dead.

So I loved this movie. I went into it liking McCarthy and Hemsworth, and expecting a lot of cameos from the original cast.  I'll start there. McCarthy rocked the roof off. She makes arguing over soup the funniest thing on the planet. Hemsworth plays a confused character. Literally. I am still scratching my head why they made his character so dumb?

SPOILER ALERT : there is a small statue of Harold Ramis, Bill Murray plays the paranormal debunker, Annie Potts plays the angry hotel manager, Dan Aykroyd plays the lazy cab driver, Slimmer appears to steal Ecto, the Stay Puft Man appears as a parade balloon, Ernie Hudson plays Patty's uncle the undertaker, Sigourney Weaver plays Holtzmann's boss.  I was more than a little upset that Rick Moranis did not make any appearance, as he was always one of my favourite characters. Aykroyd had one of the best lines in the film as he says "It's only a class five" when referring to the city being over run by ghosts. The giant twinkie in times square is a little in joke that you might not catch at first. END SPOILERS

The first scene is in itself a bit of a tribute to the second movie, as you get to see a river of slime, which is what was causing the ghosts to react in Ghostbusters II.  I like how they gave a nod to the current trend in paranormal "hunting" with their little snip of "reality tv".
And I have to say it, the whole mixing heavy metal with the occult. Full on 80's style of horror, even though this isn't a horror, just the fact they go for the goat.  Yeah, you read me right...goat.  I loved that kind of  feel. The music they used for the metal concert was lacking in everything, but the "spirit" of it is there.

what did I learn? If an actor is willing to be slimmed, slime them every scene.

Wednesday, July 13, 2016

The Nosferatu Adventures s10 p19

The Nosferatu Adventures
page 267, chapter 267

Out of Time...

Our heroine found herself standing on the edge of the harbour, unsure just how she got there. A wave of dizziness smashing through her as if she'd just been squeezed from all directions. She turned to her left without meaning to, the breeze catching a familiar scent.  Blood.  She was too late. "Vlad!" she moved towards the male cautiously.  He was breathing heavy, blood dripping from his bottom lip in a rope of pink saliva. He fell to his knees, looking up at her from under his lashes.

"Where are we?" he asked reaching for her, wrapping his arms around her waist. "What happened?" he pressed his forehead to her stomach. She noticed his clothes were the same style from the 1400's. Bacchus had pulled him not just from the other reality, but from the past. Looking at the limp body beside them, she let out a sigh of relief. It wasn't Arthur. Vlad had grabbed a homeless man, Arthur was safe for the moment.

"Come on. There's a lot to talk about. You're not safe right now." she dragged him up by the shoulders.


"So you're sure, we're the only ones here?" Dagan asked Matilda, chewing noisily on a piece of cinnamon candy. "The only werewolves in this reality?"

"As far as I can tell yes." the familiar said sheepishly. "I know our kind..." she closed her eyes rolling her wrist a few times. "Supernatural beings, are brought here at times; but as far as I know, what Loki has told me; yourself, The Seer, and now Edric, are the only lycanthropes here at this point."

"But he's more like that bitch-bat out there." Dagan replied hooking his thumb over his shoulder. "Can't full on" he made a clawing gesture by his nose to indicate a muzzle. "gggrrr."

"What exactly are you getting at?" Edric asked as he advanced a step towards the older male. Dagan just smiled as he looked down a few inches at him, as Matilda got between them.

"Boys, please." she squeaked out as she blushed wildly. "I know where this is headed and I would prefer you two did not destroy my store."

"What she's saying is we need a pack alpha." our heroine's voice broke through the commotion as she and Vlad entered the shop. "Which we will discuss later. Right now, we have to figure out the living arrangements. This little shop isn't designed for a large family."

"What about that penthouse you're shacked up with Loki in?" Dagan nearly spat out the sentence.

"There are only two bedrooms."

"It's a penthouse." the auburn haired male said letting his arms slap against his thighs. "Lots of floor space for your pets here." he gestured towards Edric, Quentin and Vlad. "I'm sure he won't mind us cozying up to his fireplace for a few days." he took a step towards our heroine letting a deep breath hit the top of her hair.

"This is your sire?" Vlad's voice never broke into an actual question. "I see the appeal. But you two haven't seen each other in what months...?" his hands wrapping around her upper arms.

"Try years pal." Quentin said from across the room where he was leaning against a bookcase too casually, his red hair nearly glowing in the lights of the one lamp.

"Human, you are not apart of this." Vlad continued. "What does he mean years? We just...we were just at my castle, the council pleading for more supplies..."

"No. No, we weren't." she turned to face him."Oh shack! This is where you went! This is what happened to you. Vlad, you disappeared one night. I had no idea what happened to you, we all assumed you were captured or worse. But when no word came...things happened. The kingdom, the packs, the covens."

"That witch!" Dagan added snarling.A growl escaped him as he flexed and unflexed his right hand, taking an instinctive step towards our heroine but stopping on his heel causing himself to teeter for a second. He felt her right palm reach up quickly brushing his ear like a whisper. Even with everyone's supernatural abilities, the movement was too quick for Vlad or the others to notice. A smug smile crossing Dagan's lips as it did.

"Right. Okay. Fine." our heroine breathed, emotionally exhausted. "We'll divide into small groups and half will come crash at Loki's."

"But first..." Rufus cleared his throat from the doorway of the kitchen. "You might want to come in here and have a brief chat with Reuben." he nodded towards the magick mirror. "He's got some news."

Tune in again for another installment of the Nosferatu Adventures starring your up story. Magic, magic ninja, magic magic ninja...oh like you weren't thinking it.)

year 5 day 162

movie: Coming to America
starring: Eddie Murphy, Arsenio Hall
genre: Comedy
year: 1988
format: Netflix Canada

plot: When an African prince is dissatisfied with the bride his parents have chosen, he decides to take matters into his own hands, by traveling to America hoping to meet someone new.

This is one of the many films in which Murphy plays more than one character, usually in heavy make up.  The one barber shop customer is eerily similar in style and appearance to the character of Guido from the other Murphy film Vampire in Brooklyn, which he did a few years later. In fact, the storyline itself, is pretty much the same. (maybe Murphy thought no one would care to notice?)

Compared to Vampire in Brooklyn, where the lead character is tossing his wealth around in hopes of impressing the girl,  the earlier version Coming to America, has the lead character trying to hide his wealth, in hopes of impressing the girl. As in this film, he's looking for someone to care about him for him and not for the fact he's a prince. (I think the two bookend each other well) Both films he's got to fight for the girl's attentions as she's already dating someone else, both females are strong independent characters. And in both films, he's only got about a month to make it all happen.

If you've read much of what I've had to say over the years, you know I'm not a big Eddie Murphy fan, in fact, Vampire in Brooklyn is about the only one of his movies I really like. So, with Coming to America being so similar, it should have been a home run right?  It wasn't.  I found it lacking in real style, and the pairing of Hall as the buddy feels like a mis-match.  Not too mention, James Earl Jones, as the father plays it a little too over the top and creepy when he's suppose to be regal and forceful.

what did I learn? I'll never give up hope of a Vampire in Brooklyn 2...

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

year 5 day 161

movie: I am Thor
starring: Jon Miki Thor, Mike Favata
genre: Documentary
year: 2015
format: Netflix Canada

plot: Following the career of heavy metal performer Jon Thor and his band

I haven't covered many documentaries this year, and this was a slight bit different then I was expecting.  Is it horrible for me to say that when I first heard of the band Thor, back when I was still young enough to worship MuchMusic's Power Hour (is that even still a thing?) the one or two videos that got played by these guys, always seemed...fixed? Maybe that's not the right word, but I always thought they lacked what Alice Cooper had, and put them in line with Bad News. (you know the Comic Strip presents comedy team) What I'm trying to say is, I don't think I ever realized these guys were a real real band. Nor did I realize they were Canadian.

So it is a documentary, and there isn't a lot to pick apart at like other genres. You have a guy who's hero was a mythical icon, and he took that aspect building himself around it. We watch him go through thick and thin as he keeps his dream alive. And that is the whole moral of it. He never gives up on what he holds as the most important element of his life.

It was almost a running joke though sad as it was, that every tour there were new band members. Almost like every few years while someone else was stumbling on his music, as each generation found him, he lost his band to loftier ideals, having to start over. I think it was one of the things that made this documentary sort of endearing. The more he seemed to loose, the more he managed to gain.

what did I learn? True vikings never die.

Monday, July 11, 2016

year 5 day 160

movie: The Great Outdoors
starring: John Candy, Dan Aykroyd
year: 1988
format: Netflix Canada

plot: When a family vacation is disrupted by one man's brother in law, not even the wilderness is enough to hold them all.

This should have been a wicked buddy comedy, but it falls short on every level. The set up is simple, the two sets of families get under each other's skin for the first 90% of the film, and have to work together at the end to rescue the kids.  There are moments when it feels like it's trying too hard to be likeable, but fails. It's obviously trying to be another version of the "national lampoons vacation" films that were popular at the time, but even in that vein it is too underwhelming.

The chemistry between Candy and Aykroyd is wasted on this script. And then there is little to no chemistry between the two female leads played by Annette Bening and Stephanie Faracy; who are suppose to be the siblings connecting the two families. They might as well have been talking their lines through a wall as much as to each other. Rounding it all out is a poorly drawn out "romance" for the teenaged son, who crushes on a local. Cliched and predictable in every way.

The only moment in the film that could be even slightly considered funny, is when the family accidentally take a photo with a dead guy. The set up for most of the jokes never pan out as they should (the guys go fishing and wake up with leeches, the grilling of lobster tails instead of hot dogs) plus the addition of the raccoon family between parts, just felt like filler with no real point.

what did I learn? Odd couple plotlines should be the easiest to pull off but sometimes are the hardest to get right.

Sunday, July 10, 2016

year 5 day 159

movie: Sisters
starring: Tina Fey, Amy Poehler
genre: Comedy
year: 2015
format: Shaw Video On Demand

plot: When two 40-something sisters get a call to come home because their parents are selling the house, they decide to throw one last bash.

This is one of those films where I just turned off the tv and am going "what just happened?", it's that forgettable.  The baseline here is the bond between the two leads. One, who is an over achieving caregiver who has fallen into a rut after her divorce, the other a party till you drop mom who can't keep a job. We've seen this countless times in films, some better than others.
Fey and Poehler have a believability between them, that no matter what you watch them in, they seem like two ends of the same braid.

We're taken back to the 80's for a bit with the family house, particularly their shared bedroom. Everything from posters from teen magazines of the time, to the oversized squeeze bottles of bubble hair gel. While the sisters bond over their shared memories, we learn that the "good sister" is keeping secrets from the "bad sister"; namely, she's been letting her niece stay with her, while the out of work mom worries sick. From there, it just plays out like a teen movie we would have seen in the late 80's/early 90's. They invite everyone they grew up with, except for the one girl who snubbed them in high school, and proceed to destroy the house.

The big themes here seem to be about living up to your full potential. As we have the Fey character (bad sister) having to take responsibility not just of the party for the night, but admitting that the way she's been living her life to this point, has been rough on everyone around her, specially her daughter. While the Poehler character (good sister) has been too afraid to do anything irresponsible/take a risk even once. And has missed out, fearing herself to have become too boring even in her own eyes. This is their chance to prove that they still have what it will take to live up to the other person's ideal.

what did I learn? Slapping John Cena into a movie is apparently cheaper than building a talking house plant.

Saturday, July 9, 2016

Night Bleeds Announcement

Yeah, I know my little Spudguns! we are a full week on and I'm only getting to this now. 

Rules:  read the book, watch the movie, and blog about it. If you decide to cook/bake/craft anything inspired by them, let us know.  But the blog post in any case must be current (July 2016) with a link back to this post or the Night Bleeds page. And drop me a comment if you have joined in.

Vampire Combo: Disney's Hocus Pocus (movie) and Carmilla by Sheridan Le Fanu (book)

Deadline:  The last Sunday of the month which is July 31st 2016

As always, if you are in the Thunder Bay area, and would like to join me for the physical book club, just let me know.

till later

Monday, July 4, 2016

Year 5 day 158

movie: Central Intelligence
starring: Dwayne Johnson, Kevin Hart
genre: Comedy, Crime
year: 2016
format: Cinema

plot: The high school all star finds himself the night before his 20th year reunion, getting a surprise visit from the one kid everyone picked on. The two hang out over old times, but soon end up in the middle of a CIA investigation.

This has some really great laugh out loud moments, like Johnson's character lugging a plane through a hanger on his own, him breaking down the whole point of old 80's movies,(I'm ashamed to say half of which I've never seen so the jokes were lost on me)  or the one scene where he uses a tie to start a fire forcing them to jump out a 30 story window.

The comedy seems to be jammed into the first hour, and then it goes into a crime/action film. Which is fine, only it looses what makes it good, which is the buddy comedy aspect. The film becomes too serious, which makes it feel longer than it was.

There is a bar fight at the beginning, which sets the mood for the caper. Which of course plays out the game of who's really the bad guy and who can you really trust?
I kept waiting for it to reveal that the character was so deep undercover, which would have explained some of the unicorns and crap, but it seems they played those elements as meaning to be there.

The big themes here seem to be anti-bullying, and loving yourself no matter what others think or how they try to make you feel about you.

what did I learn? It takes a very confident man to embrace his inner unicorn.