Sunday, April 4, 2010

Editorial April 2010 e-issue #10

Editorial April 2010 issue 10
Nickolas Cook
The Black Glove Magazine

This month’s editorial is going to be more along the lines of a rant, and for that, I apologize. But if you’re over the age of 30 (or, hell, maybe even 25), you’ll probably understand why I felt the need to go ‘postal’.
And it's long one, too. See, I didn't write one last month, and now, well, I've got some stuff to say.
You see, I guess I’m becoming one of those old bastards that I used to dread being around (usually in an enforced situation, such as a classroom in college or at work) when I was a younger man.
Yes, I’ve become the dread North American Male Curmudgeon.
More specifically, the North American Male Horror Curmudgeon.
You’ll know the N.A. Male Horror Curmudgeon by his distinctive markings: he’s usually seen at horror conventions wearing a faded (and sometimes even torn) black horror movie t-shirt. Most times it’s The Evil Dead, Return of the Living Dead, maybe even a “I Survived A Summer At Camp Crystal Lake Blood!”. And his hair is usually too long, too unkempt, or just too gone—possibly all three.
We, dear friends, are a proud species of horror fan. For, you see, we lived through the heyday of the horror industry, from the late 70s, through the 80s, and up to the early 90s. It was about a fifteen years period in which horror at the box office, and on the bookshelves, even on the television screen, was king!
But we’ve become a cynical bunch, indeed.
Or at least I sure as hell have.
And in large part that’s due to what Hollywood’s doing to utterly pigfuck my beloved horror heritage.
Thanks in large part to this asshole...

I swear, if there were such a thing as a petition to send a bill to congress to keep more idiot producers from making more idiot remakes I’d sign it in a heartbeat. Anything to make them stop raping the studio vaults for classics (and some not so classics) to ‘re-imagine’.
You know, I just love that made up word…’re-imagine’.
Nothing absolves a producer/director/actor quite so conveniently when the movie totally bombs, and pisses off the fans, as saying it wasn’t a ‘remake’, it was a ‘re-imagining’, and that we didn’t get it. And what a lousy bunch of ingrates we are. We should feel so lucky that any self-respecting studio even makes this drivel and blah…blah…blah.
But Hollywood, and its seemingly psychotic need to shit on the classics, is only part of the problem. The other thing that’s pissed off a lot of us horror curmudgeons is the lower end of the horror fan base. I’m talking about the under 25 crowd of supposed horror fans. You know the ones I mean.
The darker-than-dark folks who never even knew there was an original “Texas Chainsaw Massacre” that changed the horror world forever, that there’s an original “Halloween” that created its own sub-genre of horror films--a sub-genre that has had such a huge social and cultural impact on our country that there are college courses devoted to it and its hundreds of ripoffs.
These Horr-peas, if you will, have grown up on a steady diet of diluted PG-13, UPN-, FOX-, WB-starring crapfests that they’re convinced is real horror film-making at its best.

Now maybe some of you don’t move in social circles where you find yourself interacting with these Horr-peas, but in my profession for the last ten years or so, I’ve been in a business where I keep getting older and the people around me stay the same age, if you get my meaning. It’s sort of like Matthew McConaughey’s character is Dazed and Confused (1993), David Wooderson.
Invariably, our conversations come around to horror books and movies (if you’ve ever met me face to face, you’ll know why) and these conversations usually go one of two ways: If the person is NOT a horror fan, we move onto more neutral topics of discussion-i.e., dogs, cats, food, that funny smell in the parking lot.
But if the person has convinced himself (or herself, in many cases) that he’s a true-blue horror fan, we talk horror.
In less than five minutes I can usually nose out whether this person is a ‘horrorhead’ or merely a Horr-pea, by the mention of a few key movie titles. “I Know What You Did Last Summer” is one, the “Halloween” remake (which will forever be known as “Rob Zombie’s Halloween” because he’s a twat) is another, the “Prom Night” remake, the “My Bloody Valentine” remake (didn’t matter that it was in 3-D, by the way; it just meant a shitty movie was thrown at you, instead of merely playing its shitty way across the flat screen), “The Grudge” remake, and so on and so forth. I think you get what I’m trying to say here, right?
If you’re caught in a conversation trap with one of these bright-eyed 20 year-olds and he or she mentions any or all of the above titles as being A) scary, B) really awesome or C) the best film of “ENTER YEAR HERE”, then you, friend, are talking to a Horr-pea.

Granted, it’s a shit thing to happen.
But don’t worry, because I’m going to tell you how to deal with it.
First of all, and let me make this very clear, do NOT feign enthusiasm for these god awful movies for politeness’ sake. It will only encourage them to yammer on mindlessly about their fucking sequels. And if there’s anything worse than the original ‘re-imaginings’, it’s the shit-for-brains ‘re-sequels’. Apparently the theory behind said sequels is to make the same fucking movie again, with even less money, and even less respect and imagination than the first one.
Second, don’t bother trying to educate a Horr-pea on the existence of the originals. As far as these assholes are concerned, the world didn’t actually exist before their illustrious births, and we’re all just ‘re-imaginings’ of real people, without histories or memories. Their cultural reference point demarcates backwards at around five years from the point at which you are having this inane conversation from Hell. They do NOT care about your having seen the original “Dawn of the Dead” when it meant something to the world of horror.
Third, do NOT even bother wasting your time talking horror literature with them. Trust me, if they can’t be bothered to educate themselves on the history of horror film, they sure as fuck aren’t reading anything other than their cell phone texts messages.
So what can a horror curmudgeon do in a world where it seems there are now more Horr-peas than horrorheads (Twilight fans…yeah, I’m talking about you)?
Well, you can do what me and my wife do to combat this general dilution of the horror world. We have quarterly all-night horror moviethons called Scream-O-Ramas. Which we 'borrowed' and 're-imagined' from an excellent local arthouse movie theater here in Tucson, called The Loft. We attend their annual Scream-A-Rama every year.

Like theirs, we do a night long event, in which we play classics from the 30s, 40s, 50s, 60s, 70s, 80s, occasionally something from the 90s, but rarely anything new. We’re about the classics, not ‘re-imaginings’, after all, so remakes hardly ever make the shortlist.
We own close to 3,000 movies at the time of this writing, and the collection is growing each year, so, for us, a totally original Scream-O-Rama is easy enough to pull off. It’s almost a guarantee that the movies we play will be first time viewings for even our horror fan friends. But you certainly don’t need to own thousands of movies to pull off your own Scream-O-Rama night with some friends. Not with the technology available these days, with Netflix, On-Demand, and now you can even instantly download movies via your Playstation and X-Box game systems. And I’ve seen the movie lists for these options and they’re pretty extensive, so you should have no problem finding something for everyone.
We make our Scream-O-Ramas real events, by sending out ballots from which to select what you want to see in each category, then we tabulate the votes and send out another email to everyone with the titles we’ll be watching on Scream-O-Rama night. Everyone brings their favorite movie snacks and drinks and we have a great time.
If more people did this, it might send a very clear message to Hollywood studios that we don’t want anymore ‘re-imaginings’.
(Although I’m well aware of what’s driving them to make these shitty remakes/re-imaginings. See, they own the rights to these movies already, which means they don’t have to pay for original material, and they can basically do whatever the hell they want with them. This glut we’re seeing is really nothing more than a corporate minded bottom line decision—purely a fiscal decision, and not a creative endeavor in the least. In other words, it’s the money men telling you that you’ll get what they want to give you and like it, chump.)
And what about the future of the Horr-pea? What will become of them?
Well, my guess is the little bastards will one day be sitting right where I am, angrily expounding on the importance and social impact of such ‘horror epics’ as the “Black Christmas” remake, the ‘re-imagining’ of “Friday the 13th” and why “Rob Zombie’s H2” re-sequel was the best movie of his career.
Yeah, I’m old enough to know that it all comes around, sooner or later.
But that doesn’t make it any easier to watch my horror heritage, the horror world that’s kept me happy and sane for going on 41 years now, being screwed over for a buck by small minded, short sighted assholes, with more money than taste. I hate seeing the cultural and intellectual bankruptcy that’s being played out in my country because of a lack of imagination and honesty in entertainment.
American horror, and the new class of Horr-pea fans, is now a lackluster, homogeneous and utterly safe cinema. There can be no sense of danger in a movie-making industry that’s more worried about satisfying advertisers, middle-American morals, and fucking corporate bank accounts than striving to create something new and over-the-top dangerous for future horror fans. There’s no fear in a PG-13 horror film, except maybe for the 10 year-olds who sneak in to watch such drivel. And it is my opinion that there are no great American horror movies being made.
Not today.
And maybe, my friends, not forever, if the bank accounts and the moral majority have their way with us.
It's heading steadily towards that final scene in Fulci's greatest existential horror film, THE BEYOND (1981), where the last two people in the movie are staggering blindly through a deathly wasteland.

Yeah, that's what the horrorheads have to look forward to in the country that practically invented the best in horror cinema.
Okay, rant over, folks.
True horrorheads, you can go back to watching “Terror Train” and loving Jamie Lee Curtis, even in that ridiculous film.
And Horr-peas, I’m sure there’s a Buffy rerun you can watch, isn’t there? Or maybe you can go fawn over your dreamy Twilight posters. In any case, I’m sure you can easily forget everything this old North American Male Horror Curmudgeon just said.

--Nickolas Cook
The Black Glove Magazine

Staff Profiles

Nickolas Cook (editor-in-chief)
Publishing Credits: Nickolas has had dozens of short stories and non-fiction reviews and articles published in print and electronic formats. He has been the fiction moderator for for over four years. To date, his two published novels, THE BLACK BEAST OF ALGERNON WOOD (Dailey Swan Publishing), BALEFUL EYE ( Publishing) and ALICE IN ZOMBIELAND from Coscom Entertainment, all of which have received several positive reviews and he’s been said to display a true craftsmanship missing in much of modern horror. His upcoming all-original, novel length sequel to the hit, ALICE IN ZOMBIELAND, is ALICE AND THE QUEEN OF THE DEAD, soon to be released from Coscom Entertainment. His first short story collection, 'ROUND MIDNIGHT AND OTHER TALES OF LOST SOULS, will be released September 2010 from Damnation Books.
Personal Info: Nickolas lives in the beautiful Southwestern desert with his wife and three wonderful Chinese Pugs, who are worse than little children…the dogs, not the wife.
URL: MySpace
Contact Info:

MyMiserys (aka Kim Cook)
Personal Info: Kim lives in the Arizona desert with her husband, Nickolas Cook, and a pack of Pugs. She met Nick in 1997 in an old AOL Horror chat room and they married a year later on Halloween 1998. She has had a passion for horror novels since the tender age of 12, when she read The Exorcist (before it was made into a movie). Her favorite author, other than Nick, is Stephen King, and she truly considers herself his “Number One Fan”. She has been reading and collecting King’s books since “Carrie” was first published. When she is not reading, Kim bakes …and bakes and bakes. You can see pictures of her wonderful cakes on her MySpace page and Facebook. Each month Kim asks a featured author “13 Questions” so Black Glove readers can get to know a little about the person behind the books.
Guilty pleasure? MeatLoaf...the man...not the entrée.
URL: MySpace

Steven M Duarte
Personal Info: I have always been interested in horror culture from a very young age. I enjoy all aspects of the genre from movies, video games, books to music. I have a soft spot for foreign horror films most notably Italian made ones. I especially enjoy zombie horror films and have made it my mission to try and view any and all movies involving zombies.
Favorite films: Day of the Dead, Suspiria, Zombi, The Beyond, City of the Living Dead, Return of the Living Dead, and Deep Red, just to name a few.
I primarily listen to heavy metal but enjoy all different types of music. I have been a diehard Slipknot fan since the start and continue to be a supporter of the group. I also enjoy listening to horror soundtracks especially by the Italian group Goblin.

Lisa Morton is a screenwriter and the author of four non-fiction books, including THE CINEMA OF TSUI HARK. She is a two-time winner of the Bram Stoker award, and has published over three dozen works of short fiction. Her first novella, THE LUCID DREAMING, was recently released to critical acclaim, and her first novel, THE CASTLE OF LOS ANGELES, is coming soon from Gray Friar Press. She lives online at

Karen L. Newman
Publishing Credits: Poetry Collections: Toward Absolute Zero (Sam's Dot, 2009), ChemICKals (Naked Snake Press, 2007) and EEKU (Sam's Dot, 2005); Anthologies: The 2009 Rhysling Anthology, Dead World: Undead Stories
Personal Info: I edit Afterburn SF and Illumen as well as serving as an assistant editor for two Sam's Dot Publishing limerick projects. In my spare time I take care of my three-legged cat and write reviews for Dark Discoveries Magazine and Tangent Online.
Fav Movies: SAW, Rocky Horror Picture Show
Contact Info: and leave out NOSPAM when contacting

Jason Shayer
Publishing Credits:“The Ranch” – Necrotic Tissue #6
“No Man’s Land” – Dead Science Anthology (Coscom Entertainment)
“The Toll” – Hideous Evermore Anthology (Shadowcity Press)
Personal Info: Jason Shayer's 12-year-old mind frame has given more than a few people a reason to raise an eyebrow, most often his wife. When he’s not writing or reading, he’s teaching his three year old daughter and three week old son the finer points of zombie lore.
Contact info:

Brian Sammons has been writing reviews for years for such places as the magazines Cemetery Dance, Dark Wisdom, Shock Totem, and The Unspeakable Oath. His reviews have also appeared on many websites like The Black Seal, Bloody-Disgusting, and Horror World. Wanting to give other critics the chance to ravage his work for a change, Brian has also penned a few short stories that have appeared in such anthologies as Arkham Tales, Horrors Beyond, and Monstrous. Some of the magazines where you can find his twisted tales are Bare Bone, Cthulhu Sex, and Dark Animus. For more about this guy whose neighbors describe as “such nice, quiet man” go here:

Stabbed in Stanzas Feature Poet: Lucy A. Snyder

Interview conducted by Karen L. Newman

Lucy A. Snyder is the author of Spellbent, the first of a trilogy of novels to be published by Del Rey Books. Her literary honors include a Black Quill Award for her collection Sparks and Shadows, a Bram Stoker Award for her poetry collection, Chimeric Machines, and four honorable mentions in various issues of The Year’s Best Fantasy and Horror.

KLN: You have a BS in biology from Angelo State University and an MA in journalism from Indiana University. Why did you change professions?
LAS: I wanted to read the moment I found out what books were, and I wanted to write the moment I began to read. Once I started reading science books, I also wanted to become a scientist. That held until my first year of graduate school. I went to Indiana University to pursue a Master's degree in environmental science, but I was dissatisfied with both the program and the apparent career options I'd have after I graduated.
My second semester I took a science writing course and did really well. The professor told me, "Well, why don't you transfer over to the Journalism School? We'd love to have you here!" It was no barrier, apparently, that I hadn't taken a single journalism class as an undergraduate. So I switched programs with the intention of becoming a science writer ... but then I got a part-time job as a computer lab monitor, and all my coworkers were learning HTML and putting together Web pages, and I got hooked on that.
The early years of the Web were tremendously exciting. After I graduated I got a job doing both science writing and web editing for BioTech Resources at Indiana University, and continued working as a web designer until the .com bust. By then I was well beyond returning to science as either practitioner or reporter, but of course I kept on writing.

KLN: You have interest in computer science and have used that in your humorous collection, Installing Linux on a Dead Badger, a wonderful change from the apocalyptic tales. Any plans for future stories using the internet? Why or why not?
LAS: The risk with any technology-focused fiction is having it seem out-of-date just a few years down the road. I'm pleased that people are still enjoying ILDB considering I wrote the first story six years ago, which is a tremendously long time in Internet years. But I probably will return to the characters in Installing Linux on a Dead Badger.

KLN: You’ve taught bassoon. Why did you select that instrument? Do you play any others? Do you use music in your writing? If so, how?
LAS: I used to play both bassoon and saxophone, and started playing both in my early teens (I played string bass in elementary school but couldn't continue with it). I tried the bassoon because the complexity and rarity of the instrument appealed me and the band needed another player; I picked the saxophone because I liked the sound of the instrument. But I haven't touched a bassoon since I was in undergrad. The problem with bassoons is that lousy ones cost $2,000. Good ones cost $20,000 and sometimes more, and my family wasn't wealthy. The end of my sophomore year I was on music scholarship, playing in several ensembles and in the symphonic band and giving lessons to a couple of junior high school students ... and I was completely overwhelmed. I couldn't keep up with that and my lab work and everything else. I asked myself if I'd rather play music (knowing that I probably couldn't become a professional) or write. How often do you see bassoons jamming with the local band down at the bar?
I decided I'd rather write, and so I quit band, lost my scholarship, and had to turn in my bassoon. I haven't really ever regretted the decision (I did have other scholarships, so my quitting wasn't a financial aid crisis). I listen to a lot of music when I write, but I haven't written about music or musicians. I can't tell you why that is, because for ten years my every waking thought was consumed by music.

KLN: You’ve held a variety of different jobs in your life. One that interested me the most was snake wrangler. How did you become involved in that? Please describe that experience.
LAS: Ha! It wasn't my official job description; I was a weekend attendant at the San Angelo Nature Center. It was the first job I ever had, and I'd gone in for my interview with references and all that, but the Junior League lady who ran the place asked me only one question: "Are you afraid of snakes?" She hired me on the spot when she learned that I'd had a pet snake when I was a kid and wasn't at all afraid of them. I also wrangled turtles and frogs and fish in the job, but I did clean a lot of snake habitats. And that part of the job became my gold standard for gauging the relative unpleasantness of a given chore: "Is this worse than chiseling dried snake poo out of the bottom of an aquarium?" My story "Darwin's Children", which is in my collection Sparks and Shadows, is largely based on my experiences in the nature center.

KLN: Why did you select to write your novels in the fantasy genre instead of science fiction, as would be expected with someone of your science background?
LAS: I do still write about a lot of science fictional concepts in my fantasy novels. My fiction is largely cross-genre, and fantasy -- especially urban fantasy -- has plenty of room for genre crossing. I can put a scientist in an urban fantasy, have her continue to behave like an everyday scientist, and readers will accept her. But if I put a soucouyant in a science fiction novel, well, it's stopped being science fiction, hasn't it? Or it will have stopped being SF for a lot of science fiction readers. With urban fantasy you can include elements of mystery, horror, suspense, romance, erotica, science fiction, epic fantasy -- pretty much whatever you want, depending on the world you've built.

KLN: You’ve written prose, form, and free verse poetry. Which is your favorite and why?
LAS: I mostly write in free verse, but pulling off a decent form poem -- say, a sestina or a sonnet -- is really satisfying. I sweated over my sestina "Flyboy", and when I sold it to Strange Horizons I ran into my husband's office yelling "Booyah!" and demanded a fist-bump. He was a bit startled; I generally just email him if I sell something. The trouble with the really fiddly poetic forms is that a lot of readers (and some editors) aren't familiar with them, don't know why they're a challenge to write, and so they only judge your work by its paint job and not by what's under the hood.

KLN: You mentor students at Seton Hill University. What are the most common mistakes upcoming writers make and what’s your advice for correcting them?
LAS: The most common mistake I see is people not reading enough. But correcting this is pretty easy: read more. If you aspire to become a pro science fiction writer and you boast that you’ve read everything by Scalzi and Gibson and Clarke ... you're not reading enough. Read fiction outside your genre of choice. Read classic literature. Read creative nonfiction. Read poetry.

KLN: Thank you for agreeing to this interview. I appreciate your time. Is there anything additional you’d like to share with our readers?
LAS: Thank you for your interest! The only thing I have to add is that my second novel, Shotgun Sorceress, will be out in late October 2010.

--Karen L. Newman
(The Black Glove wants to thank Lucy for her time and efforts, and wish her a huge congrats on the Stoker win for her poetry collection--which is reviewed below. Visit Lucy at her official website for more news on future releases.)

Stabbed in Stanzas Book Review: Chimeric Machines by Lucy A. Snyder

Reviewed by Karen L. Newman

Lucy A. Snyder divides her book, Chimeric Machines, into seven sections to focus on particular human traits or aspects of nature as they relate to humanity. Some poems are speculative, but most are thought-provoking horror. She takes ordinary experiences and makes them extraordinary. The vocabulary she utilizes gives the collection an academic feel at times that takes from the horror, but more often adds to the terror.
Tom Piccirilli writes a brief, yet effective introduction to whet the reader’s appetite for the book’s content. Very unusual for Piccirilli to write this as this task generally falls to a well-known poet.
Snyder uses her scientific background to her advantage in quite a few poems, such as in “Trepanation”: for the rusty saw they used to open / a blow-swelled skull: the trepane / saved careless patricians from coma. Her word choice is precise as a surgeon’s incision for maximum imagery and effect. The prose poem “Ocean” shows her mastery of imagery: The sea wrapped the planet like a blue amoeba that had flattened itself around a grain of sand.
The theme of the poem “And There in the Machine Virginia Finally Stood Up” is common to the point of trite these days, but the poem is the most memorable of the book. Here Snyder utilizes simplistic language for a simple person. Her story is relatable to anyone who reads it. Other common themes Snyder makes her own are bad neighbors, Halloween, cats, and college students.
Each section is effective, except for Part IV Crete, Kentucky. She has not lived in Kentucky at length and thus tends to uphold stereotypes instead of delving into a subculture to portray inhabitants as individuals.
Chimeric Machines is an excellent poetry collection for those who don’t think they’ll like the literary genre. Snyder shows she’s a master of words, a true wordsmith.

-Karen L. Newman

Bloody Pages Book Reviews

By Jeff Strand
Review by Nickolas Cook
Leisure/Dorchester Press

Jeff Strand finally did it!
He impressed me.
That’s right; he finally wrote a book that not only works as a horror novel, but has the thematic poignancy the likes of which most modern mass market horror authors fail to produce, most of them even on a rudimentary level.
DWELLER works because it is a simple story of a young boy who befriends a monster in the woods behind his house—something every young boy with any imagination probably does at some point in their young life. The difference here is that the monster isn’t imagines, but an orphaned young creature, whose monstrous flesh eating family has been destroyed by humans.
Yes, Strand gives us the requisite scenes of gore and mayhem, suspense and physical terror. But what makes DWELLER work on a higher level is the fact that the young boy, Toby, and his pet monster, which he names Owen, are both social outcasts in their own way. Unfortunately, Toby never stops being such, and because of some horrible lapses in judgment, which invariably lead to some fairly horrible consequences that can never be taken back, (And, no, I’m not gonna tell you what there are here, because, trust me, to do so would ruin the fun of the book for you), he spends his life mostly alone and embittered.
Strand does some smart writing here, folks. Because he knows how difficult it would be to put a whole life into such a small space as a 300 page novel, he gives us ‘glimpses’: fast forwarded moments in Toby’s life, mostly innocuous, but also telling because of their very ordinariness. Toby is just an everyday guy, after all, who happens to be best friends with a hideous flesh eating creature. And in the end, he’s like most of us: a hardworking guy, who sees humor in the world, and who ultimately just wants to love and be loved. It’s sort of his desperate need for that love which does him the most harm.
But that’s all the spoilers you’re getting from this reviewer. I want you to really dig in and enjoy the story of a boy and his monster, like I did.

--Nickolas Cook

The Occult Files of Albert Taylor
By Derek Muk
Review written by Nickolas Cook
Publisher: Impact Books

In Derek Muk’s 2009 short story collection, we meet his recurring paranormal investigator, Albert Taylor, an anthropology professor, who just happens to solve paranormal and cryptid mysteries as a hobby. During his adventures, he meets and associates with various minor characters which one can only surmise he’s based on real people, at least in some part.
As far as writing goes, Muk is okay. Not great, mind you. But there’s some potential there, bubbling under the dull glazed surface. Unfortunately, there’s very little in the way of style; it’s a straight forward, almost clinical, and certainly mostly unemotional, school of storytelling, strictly for those who enjoy SyFy’s Ghosthunters and Destination Truth, or even reruns of The X-Files. So if that’s what you’re looking for in your speculative fiction, then you’ll probably enjoy reading this collection of eleven short stories with fictional character Albert Taylor chasing down ghosts, demons and Bigfoot.
But if you’re like me, and you want style, solid character development and archs, emotive writing and the thematic elements that elevate the narrative to another level, you will be sorely disappointed.
Which is frustrating to me as a reader, because I can see Albert Taylor’s potential as a recurring character. He certainly gets into some strange adventures; but, unfortunately, that’s about all he does. What he doesn’t do is live and breathe on the page. Not in the least. He’s as flat as the paper upon which Muk has self-published these lifeless tales. And Taylor is the main character. All the other characters in the book are even less exciting. None of them standout.
The main problem with Muk’s book (and with just about 99.9% of self published books) is that there was no editor to guide the writer, no one to give an objective opinion about the style (or lack of), and no discerning eye to advise when the book was falling flat on its face.
As a reviewer, I’m always a little suspicious of books that look like Derek Muk’s THE OCCULT FILES OF ALBERT TAYLOR. From the cheesy looking cover, which was obviously photoshopped by someone with very little imagination, to the fact that the book publisher doesn’t appear anywhere online (because it was self published, using CreateSpace). But I always try to go in with an open mind and crossed fingers, hoping against hope that THIS self-published work will NOT be like all the others.
Sometimes- very few times- I get lucky.
Most times, I am disappointed and astounded that anyone who fancies himself a real writer would allow such garbage to represent them in the world.
In this reviewer’s opinion, what Derek Muk needs to do is follow the traditional approach: submit, submit, submit and get rejection letter after rejection letter, until he gets better at his craft. He has potential to be a halfway decent writer of speculative fiction. Unfortunately, THE OCCULT FILES OF ALBERT TAYLOR does not meet that potential in the least.

--Nickolas Cook

Stoker Award Winners for 2009

The Black Glove congratulates all this year's Stoker award winners. We're especially proud of our own Lisa Morton's win for Superior Achievement in Long Fiction for her THE LUCID DREAMING.

Superior Achievement in a NOVEL
AUDREY’S DOOR by Sarah Langan (Harper)

Superior Achievement in a FIRST NOVEL
DAMNABLE by Hank Schwaeble (Jove)

Superior Achievement in LONG FICTION
THE LUCID DREAMING by Lisa Morton (Bad Moon Books)

Superior Achievement in SHORT FICTION
“In the Porches of My Ears” by Norman Prentiss (POSTSCRIPTS #18)

Superior Achievement in an ANTHOLOGY
HE IS LEGEND edited by Christopher Conlon (Gauntlet Press)

Superior Achievement in a COLLECTION
A TASTE OF TENDERLOIN by Gene O’Neill (Apex Book Company)

Superior Achievement in NONFICTION
WRITERS WORKSHOP OF HORROR by Michael Knost (Woodland Press)

Superior Achievement in POETRY
CHIMERIC MACHINES by Lucy A. Snyder (Creative Guy Publishing)

For more information about this year's nominees, please visit The Horror Writers Association's Official Website

--Nickolas Cook

13 Questions with MyMiserys: Brian Knight

Interview conducted by MyMiserys (aka Kimberly Cook)

1. How old were you when you wrote what you consider your first story?

About ten or eleven years old I think. My memory is horrible, so I can't be certain. I was in the forth or fifth grade. I don’t remember the title (horrible memory, remember) but I do remember it was a haunted house story full of monsters and floating heads.

2. What inspired you to write it?

It was a school assignment. I was always a horrible student, but for some reason I really got into the spirit of this assignment. The story seemed to impress the teacher. He took me aside after reading it and encouraged me to continue writing. I'm lucky this was the early 80s. If I'd written this in the 90s or the double Os they probably would have locked me up.

3. What was the first book you wrote?

My first book was a short action/hero novel called Some Kind of Hero. It wasn’t very good, but it was a great learning experience.

4. Of all the books you've written, which is your favorite?

Sex, Death & Honey. Nothing supernatural, just a fun protagonist, a sexy heroine, and lots of action. It’s a limited hardcover novella, but I’m going to expand it to novel length and try to resell the paperback rights. If it sells I’d like to make it the first in a series.

5. Which book would you like to forget you wrote?

Black Day. I wish that one would just go away.

6. Who is the most influential person in your life?

I’m not sure exactly how to answer that. There have been influential writers, Stephen King, E.A. Poe, and Charles Grant to name just a few, but I can’t think of anyone who has been influential on a personal level. There are people who compliment me on my work, tell me they love my books, but those compliments always freak me out a little bit. Don’t get me wrong, I love it, but I always have a sneaking suspicion they’re full of shit. No one in my life really inspires me or influences me to write, or influences what I write.

7. Who is your favorite author?

Douglas Adams. It’s a shame he had to leave us so soon.

8. If you could only own one book, what would it be?

The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, omnibus edition. All of the Hitchhiker stories (excluding the sixth and final book And Another Thing, written by Eoin Colfer) in one volume. Ha! Thought you could limit me to just one, did you? Take that!

9. When and where do you write?

Whenever possible I like to work outside. My favorite time is from Dusk until exhaustion makes me stop. I love working outside. Then that isn’t possible, anywhere I can. My favorite new gadget is my Ipod Touch, and my favorite new application is a program that lets me create and edit DOC files. It’s like having a pocket sized laptop. I can literally write anywhere now.

10. Do you have a "day job?"

Yep. Same one for ten years now.

11. Do you have a "dream job?"

Yep. The one I’ve been trying to turn into a fulltime thing for around fifteen years.

12. If you could live anywhere in the world, where would it be and why?

New Mexico or Florida. Someplace warm and within walking distance of a large body of water I can fling myself into. How much water is there in New Mexico, anyway? Any snow? I hate snow. If I never had to see another snow drift or icy road I could die a semi-happy man.

13. What is your guilty pleasure?

Theoretical physics, quantum mechanics, and cosmology. Learning about the deepest and strangest laws that govern our universe, and sometimes even understanding them.

--Kimberly Cook
(The Black Glove thanks Brian for his time and efforts. Visit him at his official website: )

TIME CAPSULES classic book reviews by Bill Lindblad

BLOOD HUNT by Lee Killough

Oh, if she’d only known.

In 1987, Lee Killough produced a police procedural mystery novel which Tor marketed as a horror story. The decision is reasonable; after all, the killer is a vampire. And, as of about a quarter of the way through the book, so is the detective trying to bring her to justice. That’s not a spoiler, by the way… or if it is, you can blame the publisher(s). In its original incarnation by Tor, the cover image is that of the vampiric detective waiting, gun raised, behind a brick wall.

The book became a sleeper hit. That’s a term for the type of book which garners a strong fan following by word-of-mouth, but which had a print run too low to allow people to easily find the story and read it. The problem with sleeper hits is that while it may drive up the price of the book on the secondary market, there’s usually not enough clamor or critical acclaim to induce a publisher to drop the cash for another printing. It gets a reader hardcore fans, but only a relatively small group of them.

The book was followed up with Bloodlinks, and both were eventually reprinted by Meisha Merlin in the late 1990s under the omnibus title Blood Walk. It is far, far easier to find an omnibus edition than the original Blood Hunt, and it’s likely to cost less.

That said, I started this review out bemoaning Killough’s lack of foreknowledge. In this case, one thing could have changed the publishing world: gender.

Killough produces an engaging hero, a beguiling villain who vexes the protagonist with problems of romantic attraction and a sense of duty, supernatural powers and troubles, an enjoyable cast of secondary characters, and a strong mystery well developed. If the genders of her two main characters were reversed, Lee Killough would have created the modern supernatural fantasy/romance nearly a decade earlier than the current famous names. And, from the quality of this book, she’d have done as good a job as any in the field, and a better job than most.

Homicide Detective Garreth Mikaelian is hunting a beautiful murderess, and underestimates her. In the process, he becomes a vampire. Lane has killed many times before, but always ensured that the people she’s drained cannot come back. Knowing she had an opportunity to do so with him, Garreth has to end her slayings and simultaneously discover why she singled him out. The resultant blend of action and characterization blends into a fine literary cocktail.

If you don’t like vampires but do like police procedurals, I recommend this book. If you don’t like police procedurals but do like vampires, I recommend this book. If you like both, you should have this book enshrined on a shelf already.

Five stars out of five.

THE MANSE by Lisa W. Cantrell

Blood Hunt is a mystery/fantasy with horror elements done right, but The Manse is a traditional horror novel done right. They could both be shelved together… and likely were, as this also came out in 1987, but the experience of reading them is completely different.

Cantrell stays within the bounds of convention by staying with the same protagonist throughout the book and by having a wonderfully macabre cover by Bob Eggleton. That’s it.

You get a minor character who is introduced shortly into the book, and who gets an inordinate amount of coverage as the menace starts to develop. Nothing unusual in that… it’s a classic sign of the character who is going to die to demonstrate how horrible the creature - in this case a haunted house - can be. This secondary character, however, is a little kid. Eight years old, brave, and innocent. So, we all know, this character will barely survive, although at the expense of another developing character. The kid will then probably warn everyone of the danger, but won’t be believed.

Nope. The kid dies.

Let me repeat that, for those who might not be paying attention: The. Kid. Dies. I won’t go into detail, but it’s not a pleasant death.

That’s just the start. Conventions are dispatched for this novel, in which people who are generally portrayed as cardboard cutouts show surprising yet believable depth, the violence ranges from graphic and direct to off-camera and suggestive, some people who “should” die walk away unscratched, some heroic characters die, and just often enough a traditional plot device is used exactly in its standard format… just often enough to prevent a reader from guessing how things will occur by assuming the opposite of the usual.

This book won the Stoker for first novel. Cantrell went on to do a few more horror novels, and then (as if bringing it around to tie these reviews together) produced a police procedural mystery novel which had an horrific supernatural element to it, Boneman.

I don’t know what Cantrell is doing today, but I wish she were still writing horror like this.

Five stars out of five.

BLACK AMBROSIA by Elizabeth Engstrom

This book came out in 1988, and I have no idea what Engstrom’s influences were. If I had to guess, I’d toss out James Ellroy, maybe Theodore Sturgeon’s “Some of Your Blood”… whatever inspired her to write this book, the inspiration was appreciated.

The old arguments about women in horror continue. There’s a panel about it at just about every horror convention, and at many of the larger fantasy conventions. It’s almost as common as filking (although less fun if you’re drunk, and more fun if you’re sober.)

To which I say: enough. The first novel I started off with is a great example of a woman writing an action/horror piece; the second is a great “pure” horror story, and this one nails moody, emotional horror perfectly.

We get the travels of a young woman whose experiences steadily convince her that she is not human, but rather a vampire. She kills people and drinks their blood, and battles her dark impulses which are, ultimately, nothing more and nothing less than the emotional swings experienced by most teenagers. The reader watches as she goes from unstable to insane, and watches the same thing happen to the young man who is tracking her.

The writing style is intentionally poetic, and it sets the mood wonderfully. If it were a movie, it would barely register on the Joe-Bob Briggs scale… a neck chewing here, an attempted rape there, no interesting Kung-fu deaths… but it’s pretty damned awesome.

Five stars out of five.

(Not mentioned here: All sorts of crappy horror novels of the 1980s, also written by women. Just as it’s a fallacy that women can’t write horror well, it’s also a fallacy that they’re any more immune than men to producing dreck. And, oh, have I read some of those books.)

To end this trip back in time, we’re not going as far back as usual. I wanted to include at least one bona-fide horror classic by a woman. And as tempting as it was, I didn’t want to be too obvious (thus the lack of The Lottery or Frankenstein.) Instead….


Daphne du Maurier gave us one of the best horror stories of the twentieth century, and most people don’t remember that she had anything to do with it. That story rounds out this collection from 1977 which amassed her stories from the 1950s through 1970s.

The stories are all noteworthy, and range in tone from the physically violent to the emotionally disturbing. The collection begins with the novella “Don’t Look Now“, which was adapted into the film of the same name. It follows up with “The Apple Tree“, which plays with being a literary descendant of an M.R. James story by way of technical realism. The cover illustration is inspired by the short story “The Blue Lenses“. “Kiss Me Again, Stranger” is a thriller disguised as a love story. Other stories fill the book with pleasant variety.

And then there’s the final story, “The Birds”.

People hear that title, and they think of the Hitchcock movie. The more film-and-literature oriented might remember the odd trivia of the screenplay being written by Evan Hunter, a.k.a. Ed McBain. But a surprising few know it was Du Maurier who wrote the story.

Let’s make this perfectly clear: the story is much, much better than the movie. And I liked the movie.

Five stars out of five.

Next month, another theme month: Supernatural detectives!

--Bill Lindblad

Movie vs. Book: Psycho II


It had to happen. In the past couple months, the movies I’ve had to watch for this really weren’t horrible. That could only last so long, and it ended this round. I can honestly say that this is the worst movie I’ve done yet, and even now thinking about watching it makes me twitch.
Psycho 2 is probably the most useless sequel ever made. Produced a full 23 years after the original, there could have been no other motivation rather than simple greed. Money was there to be made, and by golly, they were going to make it. In fact, the first ten minutes had more footage from the original than not, a trick that hasn’t failed this bad since Silent Night, Deadly Night 2. Instead of reminding us of the horror of the story, it just shows how bad this one is in comparison to the original.

Anthony Perkins is back as Norman Bates, freshly released from a mental institution. They deemed him sane enough to return to daily life. Why, I have no idea. From the first glance into his eyes, it’s obvious that Perkins’ Norman isn’t all there in the head. He gets a job at a diner where he meets a down-on-her-luck waitress (Meg Tilly, whose voice is oddly an octave lower than in any other role). He lets her stay with him at the motel, and the two look like they could be on their way to a happy, if not perfectly sane, couple.
Only, things don’t go so well for poor put-upon Norman. He keeps getting calls from “Mother”, even though she’s been dead since before the original. Then people start dying, presumably being murdered by Mother. And his new girlfriend isn’t who she seems—she is the daughter of Lila (Vera Miles, reprising her Psycho role), sister of the woman murdered in the shower 23 years earlier. Mother and daughter are in a plot to drive Norman insane (which shouldn’t be that far of a trip) and back to the institution. But then Tilly’s character changes her mind, because she truly is falling for poor Norman.

You think that would be enough twists and turns for the plot. But oh, no. The filmmakers just have to throw two or three more in for good luck, none of which have any logical reason for existing, and fit nowhere with what happened in the movie before. Forget suspension of disbelief—by the end you’re being asked to forget half of the movie you just sat through. Believe me, I’d like to, but no, it does not work.
I can’t say whether the performances were bad or not. The actors were doing exactly what the script demanded of them. Perkins gets nothing to do but play on the edge of sanity. Tilly tries to make her adoration for Norman believable, but it just doesn’t work for me. Miles, unfortunately, only gets a couple minutes of screen time.
My advice—do not see this one. Forget I ever mentioned it. Put its mere existence from your mind. Get some sort of mental block so, if you see the DVD on a shelf, your conscience won’t let you acknowledge its presence. If you really want some 80s horror cheese, run far from this and go straight to Troll 2. Even that felt ten times better than this half-hearted attempt to cash in on a true classic.

- Jen

BOOK: PSYCHO II by Robert Bloch

How do you revisit one of the most famous horror novels in history?

The answer seems to be: treat it like any other novel. This is a rare sequel that doesn’t require the reader to be at all familiar with the prior work, which is particularly unusual because it’s quite possible that the earlier work (in either movie or book form) is likely to be familiar to every person who picked up Psycho II.

The book takes place in the early 1980s with Norman still in an asylum; it’s quite clear that he’s never going to be allowed to leave. We’re given a look inside Norman’s mind, and while his thinking is clearer than it once was it’s obvious he’s still got his dark side. He’s become adept at hiding it during his incarceration, but how effective those skills are is a matter of question. His psychiatrist has been paying particular attention to Norman, who had achieved a measure of fame due to the weird and violent nature of his crimes.

A fortunate (but surprisingly realistic) confluence of events results in Norman engineering a successful escape. Free after so many years, Norman hunts down (literally) money and clothes so he can go West to… Hollywood!

Yes, Hollywood. It seems there’s a movie being made about Norman and he’s none too thrilled by it. Meanwhile his psychiatrist, seeing all of the work he’s put into Norman’s case going awry, follows him to Los Angeles in an attempt to help recapture his famous patient.

The resultant novel is one part crime novel and one part parody of the Slasher film productions of the 1980s. It’s got scenes of true horror mixed with the comedic elements - I would love to know if any of the film studio characters had direct analogues - and the book mixes them into a perfectly paced, thoughtful and surprising narrative.

Five stars out of Five.

(Okay, this isn’t your typical Movie vs. Book. We decided to do this one in honor of April 1st, as the two were directly unrelated by anything but title.
Indirectly, Bloch wrote Psycho II around the time that the studios were considering a sequel to the movie. The book was read by key people in the studios and roundly rejected for a couple of reasons, not the least of which was the unsavory way in which slasher movie staff were portrayed.
Both the movie and the book can be procured cheaply. Decide for yourself who was right.)


Fresh Blood: New Releases In the World of Horror

In Book News:

The Book of Horror
Published by Living Dead Press

From the backcover:
What frightens you the most?
Is it serial killers, ghosts, demons, creatures that prowl in the night, or perhaps zombies?
Well, whatever your favorite thing that goes bump in the night is, you’ll find it here.
So dig in and set your fears loose in Living Dead Press’ first Book of Horror. Nothing is sacred and no myth is safe as this book delves into the darkest reaches of man’s mind, and perhaps his very soul.
Buckle up, it’s going to be a bumpy ride.

Order links:
(I'm especially proud to announce this release, as the lead story in this new collection of horror short stories from today's up and coming horror writers happens to be by yours truly. SKINS is a western/horror story sure to please readers of both genres.)

In Movie News:

Clash of the Titans 3D
Release date: April 02, 2010
Starring: Sam Worthington, Liam Neeson, Ralph Fiennes
I will always remember the original Clash of the Titans as a kid. It was high tech for its time and was a good telling of Greek Mythology. Now some 29 years later we receive a reimaging with big name actors and a huge budget to boot. The inclusion of 3D was done as an afterthought as the actual film was not filmed with 3D in mind. After the huge success of Avatar you will see many studios scrambling to convert their films into 3D.

Release date: April 30, 2010
Starring: Jackie Earle Haley, Kyle Gallner,
Guess what….. Another remake!!! At least we have a possible worthwhile remake of a well known horror franchise. Jackie Earl Haley takes on the role of old burnt up Freddy giving series veteran Robert Englund a rest. I'm undecided on seeing another actor dawn the claws. Haley was good in Shutter Island and Watchmen, not sure how he will be in filling Englund’s shoes.

--Steven M. Duarte
(Editor's Note: Personally, I think asshat Michael Bay should not legally be allowed within a hundred feet of any remakes, re-imaginings, re-fuck ups, or whatever that simpleton is calling his shit-for-brains films these days. He is pretty much, in my opinion, exactly what the ailing U.S. horror genre needs the least: someone with absolutely no imagination, and even less respect for what made the originals work so well. So here's to you, Michael-fuckhead-Bay! May you choke on one of your overwrought CGI-fest, dummy downed, pieces of shit excuse for filmmaking, you moron.
--Nickolas Cook, Editor-In-Chief, and all around Michael Bay hater!)

Celluloid Horrors Movie Reviews

Alien Contamination (1980)

Director: Luigi Cozzi
Cast: Ian McCulloch, Louise Marleau, Marino Masé, Siegfried Rauch, Gisela Hahn, Carlo De Mejo and Carlo Monni

1980's Italian sci-fi\horror classic, Alien Contamination (known also as Contamination) was directed by the great Luigi Cozzi, and starred that action man himself, Ian McCulloch, of Fulci's undead grue classic, ZOMBI (1980), and it has all the essentials of great spaghetti horror: lots of gore, terrible dubbing and a story that makes almost no sense.
When a deserted cargo ship is discovered to be on a collision course with NYC's harbors, policemen descend upon the seemingly deserted ship, only to find the bloody remains of the strangely mutilated crew, which look as if they've been torn inside out. The police, led by a perpetually scruffy looking Marino Mase as a pissy NYC police detective, find a cargo hold full of strange looking green eggs. They also find out why the dead bodies look so bad, when one of their number stupidly decides to cuddle with one of the embryos. Soon, the government steps in to find the origin of these nasty eggs, with Louise Marleau, as a fem-power military Colonel, in charge of the investigation. She decides to enlist disgraced astronaut Ian McCulloch, who it seems wasn't believed when he said he saw the same eggs on Mars months before during a space landing. So Marleau teams up with pissed off Mase and McCulloch to track down the eggs' origin. And you won't believe where the eggs come from and how the aliens intend to invade our lonely little rock. Suffice it say, you won't be disappointed (even if the alien monster does resembles a Legend of Zelda Boss).
The soundtrack is vintage Goblin (my fav prog rock horror band, ever!) and their sound effects add a whole new level of creep to this almost forgotten grue classic.
If you have a chance to catch this one, it's highly recommended for fun and green eggs and ham, Sam I am.

--Nickolas Cook

Halloween III: Season of the Witch (1982)

Director: Tommy Lee Wallace
Cast: Tom Atkins, Stacey Nelkin, Dan O'Herlihy and Nancy Kyes

Directed by John Carpenter's longtime friend, movie collaborator and bandmate (you can hear an example of their band music in Carpenter's classic Big Trouble In Little China) Tommy Lee Wallace, this has to be one of the strangest horror movies of the 80s. And for those of us who lived through those halcyon days, that's saying a lot. So what do a stolen a five-ton Stonehenge rock and some freaky Halloween masks have in common?
You really wouldn't believe me if I told you.
Hell, I've seen the movie a dozen times since 1982 and I still don't believe it.
But that's besides the point.
This is just plain fun times for horror fans.
Seems Dan O'Herlihy wants to play history's greatest practical joke, by putting tiny pieces of Stonehenge inside his Silver Shamrock halloween masks and then performing a black magic ritual that activates said Stonehenge bits, thereby turning the masks' wearers into...well, that's never really explained very well. It's hinted at with scenes of kids' faces oozing snakes, bugs and pus; but if you're looking for logic and coherency, maybe this isn't the movie for you. Our hero, Tom Atkins, plays a divorced doc who teams up with his murdered patient's daughter, played by Stacey Nelkin, and they traipse across California to the small town of Santa Mira, which seems to be run like a fascist state, by elderly mask manufacturer, O'Herlihy. Well, they don't play it too smart and alert the bad guys to their real mission and, soon, they're hauled away in the middle of the night by O'Herlihy's robot goons (yeah...did I mention there were robots? No? Well, there're robots in this horror film. Just deal with it, okay? I said it made no sense, didn't I?) and detained while O'Herlihy spouts out his master plan...which in the light of things, seems a little stupid, because he's going to die, too.
Anyway, I won't spoil the end for you. Just remember: you've got a little gore, some great acting from Tom Atkins (still one of my fav actors), Nelkin gets naked a couple of times and there's that truly bizarre story.
If you haven't seen it, what the hell are you waiting for? Netflix it! Now! For the children!
(Three more days to Halloween, Halloween, Halloween...three more days to Halloween, Silver Shamrock!)

--Nickolas Cook

The Green Slime (1968)

Director: Kinji Fukasaku
Cast: Robert Horton, Richard Jaeckel and Luciana Paluzzi

From the first moment the rockin' theme song (coming to get you, green sliiiiiiiiiime) plays, while the opening credits pop before your eyes, you just know you're in for a good time with this Japanese\US co-production.
Set in earth's future, the bulk of the story takes place on a space station where a hideous force of invading green slime monsters (carried onboard by a bunch of careless astronauts sent to blow up a stray asteroid headed for earth...hmmmm...sound familiar?) are soon eating up all the electric power they can get to, getting huge, multiplying like crazy, and killing off the locals. But it's not all green slime antics. Heck no, there's adventure and romance, thanks to the likes of such drive-in vets as Robert Horton, Richard Jaeckel and Luciana Paluzzi.
Okay, so this isn't the kind of sci-fi horror that's gonna put the Alien franchise in any danger. The special effects are can even see the strings on the spaceships at times...the monsters are basically rubber suit fodder. But like I said, it's fun. It's Saturday matinee kind of fun, something modern filmmakers have forgotten how to do, with their overblown CGI budgets and multi-million dollar stars.

--Nickolas Cook

House By the Cemetery (1981)

Director: Lucio Fulci
Cast: Catriona MacColl, Paolo Malco, Giovanni Frezza, Silvia Collatina, Dagmar Lassander and Giovanni De Nava

I just got the chance to see this masterpiece of Italian grue on the big screen for the first time, thanks to our local arthouse cinema, The Loft, and I've got to say, even with the usual assinine MST3K antics from the audience, it was a hell of a thrill.
Unhappily married couple, Paolo Malco and Catriona MacColl, along with their whiny son, Giovanni Frezzi, move from the big city to a small country mansion so dad can do some research on old houses. Everything starts out weird from the beginning, as their young son suddenly begins seeing dead little girls and having conversations with her about why he shouldn't go to the old house. But the parents prevail and soon we're treated to tombs in the middle of the living room (no one thought that was strange, I guess...well, not strange enough to get the fuck out of the house anyway), some really grotesque, graphic murder set pieces, some great atmospheric organ music from Walter Rizzati (and this soundtrack has been a favorite of mine for years, ever since I first saw the movie on VHS back in the mid-80s), and a zombie. Yes, a zombie. This is a Fulci movie after all, which means zombies can pop up anytime, anywhere. In this case, our zombie happens to be Dr. Freudstein, the original inhabitant of the house, who has been living secretly in the basement for decades, killing anyone who dares to enter his domicile.
Fulci always had a sort of strangely existential approach to narrative and The House By the Cemetery is no exception. There's little logic, and even sometimes, it feels as if the entire movie might be out of sequence (which it's said actually happened upon its original release and no one noticed for six months, and it happened again upon its original VHS release, and again, no one noticed for several months. What does that tell you about the narrative logic and coherency of this film?). But this may be my 3rd favorite Fulci film of all time, right after Zombie and The Beyond and right before #4: The Gates of Hell. The terrible dubbing also makes for some great unintended laughs, but its the histrionic acting that really keeps you glued to the screen. The bat stabbing scene is just fucked up. You truly have to see it to believe it.
So I highly recommend this to anyone who considers him/herself to be a true blue Horrorhead.

--Nickolas Cook