Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Exclusive Hot Fuzz

One of my favorite films of the year (so far) comes out on DVD today here in the US. While there has been a good deal of critical acclaim for Hot Fuzz I'm not sure how the regular American movie-goer feels. I heard one person I kind of know say it "wasn't funny at all, not even a little" and my friend I watched it with didn't seem to be too into it, but screw those guys, I absolutely love this movie. I've seen it 3 times already and I am pretty certain a 4th viewing is in order tonight. Definitely check it out if you haven't.

Anyway, the reason I'm mentioning this rather obvious news is give people a heads up on the Wal-Mart exclusive bonus disc. Unlike most "exclusive bonus discs", this one is actually very much worth picking up, with three hours of material. The Region 2 DVD released last month was loaded with material spread over 2-discs, but when they announced the Region 1 release they mentioned it would be missing several of those features. Now, Wal-Mart is evil, and I wouldn't normally suggest anyone go near one, but this is the only non-HD way to get a lot of the extras (maybe all of them, I'm not 100% sure) from the R2 set without having to pay a lot to get that one shipped over here. So if you enjoy special features I'd pick this one up. Plus, as you can see, the extra disc has a great image of Nicholas and Danny firing two guns whilst jumping through the air, that's gotta be worth something.

Alright, I suppose that's enough celebrity death and DVD news for now. I will most likely have some music up later on this evening, so be sure to check back.

Michelangelo Antonioni, Tom Snyder and Bill Walsh join Ingmar

After hearing about Bergman's death yesterday I was telling a friend about how there always seems to be 3 or 4 simultaneous celebrity deaths, and sure enough, shortly after saying that I heard that another great filmmaker, Michelangelo Antonioni (Blow Up died yesterday as well. Then I find out that both Tom Snyder and former 49ers coach Bill Walsh had also passed away. So strange how there's always a group to go at once.

Monday, July 30, 2007

Ingmar Bergman Dies at 89


Sad news to report, I just heard that legendary Swedish filmmaker Ingmar Bergman passed away today. You can read about it here. And since I always have a hard time coming up with something touching or thoughtful to say when dealing with terrible news like this, I will just keep it very simple and say that he will be greatly missed.




Saturday, July 28, 2007

Gianni Ferrio - Una Farfalla Con Le Ali Insanguinate (The Bloodstained Butterfly)



Okay, enough talk about a certain animated movie for now, time to get back on track. This is Gianni Ferrio's music from Un Farfalla Con Le Ali Insanguinate (The Bloodstained Butterfly).

1. Soliloquio (03:50)
2. Concerto blues (01:51)
3. Crescendo ostinato (02:25)
4. La fuga (03:22)
5. Soliloquio (la condanna) (01:20)
6. Inutile (00:56)
7. Concerto blues (indagine) (01:55)
8. Soliloquio (ricordi) (01:46)
9. Soliloquio (incontro con Sarah) (01:46)
10. Concerto blues (paura) (02:00)
11. Sarah (04:16)
12. Soliloquio (nel parco) (02:27)
13. Preludio per un incontro (03:29)
14. Pericolo (01:41)
15. Soliloquio (epilogo) (03:36)
16. Soliloquio (Original Film Version) (03:58)
17. Concerto blues (Extended Take) (04:30)

...and by accident I discovered who the murderer was...

Friday, July 27, 2007

Best. Simpsons Movie. Ever


By my calculations I have watched over 1,400 hours of The Simpsons in my life. And that’s probably underestimating it a bit. I factored one 22 minute episode, 5 times a week, 52 weeks a year, times about 15 years. (It’s been on for 18 years, but I haven’t tuned in regularly for the past few years). I mention this just to get everyone up to speed. You know, make sure everyone knows that I've been a big fan of the show for more than 2/3rds of my life before I continue here.

When I first heard the long rumored Simpsons Movie would actually be coming out I was both very excited and a little terrified about the news. It’s been one of my favorite shows since I watched the series premiere with my Mom and my Grandma way back in 1989. But the show has suffered a much discussed decline in quality over the past several years, so I was afraid that the movie would be more "Now Simpsons" and less "Then Simpsons". I was worried that the movie 18 years in the making would totally suck. Well, I'm happy to say that despite my fear that The Simpsons Movie would not live up to the nearly 2 decade wait, it turned out to be a very enjoyable, rather funny, fast paced 87 minutes. I found myself laughing quite a bit, and I really had a good time watching. Pretty good plot they cooked up for the movie and it never felt like they were straining to make it work for the whole 90 minutes. Amazingly, I even teared up a bit during one of the scenes. Probably one of the most touching scenes the show has had in years.

I might be giving too glowing a review due in part to the excitement of seeing hundreds of Simpsons characters on a huge movie screen in a completely full theater, but I would definitely recommend anyone who was ever a Simpsons fan (regardless of whether you currently are or not) check it out. It’s certainly not on the same level of quality as say, the Frank Grimes episode, but certainly better than the last few years of the show. My theory is that they’ve been writing this movie for 6 years and they wanted to save the better jokes for the movie and not waste them on the episodes. Makes sense, right? They can half-ass the episodes, I mean what are they gonna do, cancel The Simpsons?

Random thoughts that I couldn't seem to work into the above text:

I was quite surprised by a very quick joke during Bart’s early skateboarding sequence. I don’t want to give it away here, but you’ll know it when you see it. It got quite a reaction out of the audience. I don’t really think anyone was offended (well, parents of the several really young kids aside) but we did not see that one coming. Also, while I thought maybe seeing it in context would make it funny, Spider-Pig is still not funny. However, Marge yelling out “Somebody throw the goddamn bomb!” was oddly hilarious. Never been a huge Marge guy, but that was pretty goddamn funny. One major downside for me, I never once saw Jasper, Abe’s friend from the retirement home. His “Who shot who in the what now?” is one of my all-time favorite lines.

Get Simpsonized Part Duex


Well, if you were one of the many people who just couldn’t get Simpsonized due to the highly unpredictable and slow nature of the site I linked to the other day, fear not. Looks like there’s another variation of the Simpsonizer available on the Simpsons Movie page. This one doesn’t have a cool name like the other one, it just says “Create Your Simpsons Avatar”, you can find it right next the Simpsons Movie logo at the top of the page. It’s for making an Avatar to use with IM or whatever you use, but you can save it as a JPEG and I found the results to be much closer to what I actually look like (minus the hair). And with this one you don't have to worry about the pesky picture uploading part, you have to start completely from scratch. There are even some cool games to play while you’re on the site.

I’ll be going to see the movie tomorrow afternoon and like a lot of long time fans I’m a little afraid it might suck. But I’ve been watching the show since the very first episode premiered in 1989 so I have to go. I been watching this show for over 2/3rds of my life, so I don't think I have any choice. The reviews seem to be pretty good so far, but the show has been rather mediocre the past several years (I know, everyone says that, but I think it's true), and I'm not really liking a lot of the previews so far. Especially that Spider-Pig thing, which I can’t for the life of me figure out why that is funny. Everyone I know seems to think it’s funny, so maybe I'm just a mean-spirited asshole, I don't know. But I will be there opening day to find out for myself.

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

MST3K Robot Holocaust - Review

Robot Holocaust was one of the movies released by the legendary Wizard Video. Wizard was well known for their oversized boxes and fantastic artwork with titles like Headless Eyes and Psychos in Love. Awesome title aside, Robot Holocaust has gotta be one of the worst movies they were ever subjected to on the show. The only redeeming quality I could find (aside from unintentional hilarity) was that the evil Valeria (played by Angelika Jager, not to be confused with artist Angelika Jaeger) was pretty hot. Hot, yes, but certainly not an actress. In this, her lone film credit, she gives an acting performance so bad it has to be seen to be believed. I'd say it's right up there with the appearance model Bridget Hall made on Cybil years ago (dear God, why do I know that?). The poor girl was clearly just hired for her looks, and hearing her try and speak her lines properly through her very thick accent is kinda sad. Sad in a really, really funny way. I dare anyone to try and understand three consecutive words that come out of her mouth.

Not surprisingly, a lot of the actors in this movie never worked again. Well I'm sure they probably had jobs at some point after Robot Holocaust, just not jobs in the movie business. One of the actors, Joel Von Ornsteiner is now a respected forensic psychologist who goes by the name of Dr. Buzz. He's even appeared numerous times on CNN and CourtTV. The film's director Tim Kincaid put out of few more cheapies throughout the 80s before taking a decade off from filmmaking. He currently directs several gay porn films a year under the name of Joe Gage. Not that there's anything wrong with that. Just using these two guys as an example of how interesting a person's career path can be after taking part in the production of a bad, bad movie.

Being that they were still working out all the kinks in this first season (well, first season on a real network) the jokes aren't as funny and they don't come as fast as we've grown accustomed to. But I think as far as Season 1 goes this one is actually pretty funny. There are some great jokes at the expense of Valeria and her difficult to decipher dialog, and some well used Ted Nugent zingers. Although the guy they frequently refer to as The Nuge doesn't really look like Ted Nugent at all. He looks more like he'd be in Manowar or something, but I guess "The Huge Nuge!" is funnier than if they yelled out "Hey, it's the drummer from Manowar!" One thing I didn't really like about Season 1 was Josh Weinstein. I didn't find his Dr. Larry character very funny, and his Tom voice was way too deep. I mean no offense to the man, I'm sure he's a funny guy (he did write one of the best Freaks and Geeks episodes after all), just saying, I didn't find him funny on this show. Hysterical in Cinematic Titanic, however.

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

The Monster Squad finally hits DVD

Today marks the release date of a DVD that fans have been waiting a decade for, The Two-Disc 20th Anniversary Edition Monster Squad DVD. It's been on the top of a lot of people's most wanted DVDs list since the format was first introduced, and for whatever reason it's taken this long to come out. I always just figured it to be a rights issue, since it featured five of the classic Universal Horror creatures, I thought that might've somehow made matters more complicated and would explain why a popular title like this would take so long to come out. I've actually had pretty high quality bootleg DVDs of both The Monster Squad and Fred Dekker's other horror film Night of the Creeps for a while now, but it's good to see an official release of at least one of them after all this time. Despite not having the original artwork, the whole package still looks very nice and I've already gotten used to the new cover. Plus it's a great set with 2 commentaries and a documentary longer than the movie itself. The movie is about 76 minutes, this documentary is about 90. There's also a funny interview with Frankenstein. I don't mean an interview with Tom Noonan in the Frankenstein costume, I mean an interview with Frankenstein, the actor. He talks about being in the business for 50 years, what he's really like and his personal feelings about the Wolfman. Despite what you've seen in movies, Frank is actually very eloquent and really has a lot to say.



I never noticed the amount of Burger King product placement there was in the Monster Squad. First Sean and his Dad eat Burger King on the roof while watching Groundhog Day part 12. Later Fat Kid jokingly says "Why don't we just go over and do it in Burger King?" Then you've got people and monsters running back and forth in front of the BK several times during the finale. I'm not one to bitch about product placement, I'd rather have someone say Google instead of making something up (although jokes with Google or eBay in the punchline drive me nuts). Just saying with all this product placement where the hell were the Monster Squad toys? I would've loved to have had a chance to get my hands on a Scary German Guy figure or a Hot Wheel modeled after Dracula's phantom hearse.

Now that this one is out, and seems to be selling very well (it's currently #12 on Amazon's top selling DVDs list, right alongside stuff like 300, House and Zodiac) let's hope they haul ass and get the official Night of the Creeps DVD out. The Monster Squad is a blast, but NOTC is better in my opinion.

Also, in case you missed it, Bruce Broughton's score is available here. They've announced an official limited soundtrack that will be released soon, so grab this one now before I have to take it down.

Stelvio Cipriani - Incubo sulla città contaminata



To celebrate the 200,000th visit, I've got some more Stelvio to put up. This is the limited edition (Limited to 1,000 copies) soundtrack from Incubo sulla città contaminata (Nightmare City), which was a major influence on the Planet Terror segment of Grindhouse. In addition to to being known under the most commonly used title of Nightmare City, there are several other great titles it's known by, such as City of the Walking Dead, Nightmare, and my personal favorite Invasion By The Toxic Zombies.

1. L'attesa
2. Metropolis
3. Agguato
4. Incubo
5. Sustain
6. Sustain 2
7. I'll Find My Way To You
Composed by Shaper-Cipriani and performed by Grace Jones
8. Una notte pericolosa
9. Una notte pericolosa
10. Una citta deserta
11. Solitude
12. Masquerade
13. Metropolis 2
14. L'attesa 2
15. Incubo 2
16. L'attesa 3
17. Solitude 2
18. Incubo 3
19. Masquerade 2
20. Incubo 4
21. L'attesa 4
22. Incubo 5
23. Masquerade Jingle
24. L'attesa 5
25. Incubo 6
26. L'attesa 6
27. Incubo 7
28. Sustain 3
29. Incubo 8
30. Solitude 3
31. Una notte pericolosa 2
32. Incubo 9
33. Agguato 2
34. Incubo 10
35. L'attesa 7
36. Incubo 11


Monday, July 23, 2007

Happy 200,000


Just wanted to drop in really quickly to mention that the site just reached the 200,000 visits mark, 11 Months and 11 Days after I first started it up. Thanks a lot to everyone who regularly visits The Morgue, couldn't have done it without you! Well, I don't know, maybe I could've eventually, but it would've taken much, much longer without you guys. So many high fives to all of you. Oddly, I've gotten about 200 more visitors today than I do on average because of my Simpsonize post the other day. I checked the referrals with my site meter and people keep getting directed here to find the link the Simpsonize themselves. So a little tiny bit of thanks to The Simpsons and Burger King as well.

Stelvio Cipriani - Tentacoli

Speaking of Italian ripoffs of the 70's and 80's, this is Stelvio Cipriani's music from Tentacoli (Tentacles). Essentially Jaws with an octopus, Tentacles, directed by Ovidio G. Assonitis (of Chi Sei? fame), was released on an unsuspecting public in the summer of 1977. Like Jaws, it's cast was made up of very talented actors (Shelley Winters, Henry Fonda, John Huston), but unlike Jaws, Tentacles just didn't turn out very well and is considered by many to be among the very worst of the many, many Jaws ripoffs out there. Of course, like a large majority of Italian productions from the 60's, 70's and 80's (Tentacles was mostly shot in the US, with numerous American actors, but it was an Italian production) the music is very well done and makes for a great listen.

1. Small Town Pleasures (03:12)
2. She'll Never Come Back (02:47)
3. My Son's Friend Is A Champion Pisser (02:20)
4. Summer And Winter (02:33)
5. San Diego, Yellow Cab (02:48)
6. Happines is Having Two Killer Whales As Friends (03:54)
"Happines" Happiness is spelled wrong on the package
7. Too Risky A Day For A Regatta (03:44)
8. Sorry, I Have To Go (02:35)
9. Scotch For Two (01:54)
10. The Killer Whales' Game (02:27)
11. The Capture Of The Giant Octopus (01:45)
12. Two Old Kids (03:00)
13. Tentacles (04:21)

It's Turning the Beach ... Into a Buffet!



Saturday, July 21, 2007

Pet Sematary



The 1989 Mary Lambert film Pet Sematary. Yet another movie we can expect to see remade in the near future. Right alongside Prom Night, April Fool's Day, and an assload of others, each set to feature a bunch of people much prettier than you and me. I know, I know, movie stars have always been prettier than us, it's a stupid statement, but I thought it sounded good, so I'm sticking with it. I still think movie producers should think like the Italians of the 70's and 80's and just rip movies off and use a different title. That's much more fun in my opinion.

I, like a lot of people, think a large portion of the movies based on Stephen King books are either pretty bad or downright crappy (especially any of them directed by Mick Garris, Master of Horror my ass.) However, I personally think Pet Sematary is rather good. But I do find it to be very depressing with the gruesome introduction to Massive Headwound Pascow, the little kid Cage being dismembered by a truck, and the overall oppressive atmosphere throughout entire running time, so it's not one I pop in too often. While very depressing, it's not really too terrifying of a film, but I will say that the diseased sister Zelda is one of the creepiest things I've ever seen. The couple of minutes with that character genuinely frighten me to this day. I made that screenshot with my hands over my eyes. Seriously.

Get Simpsonized

Ever wanted to see what you'd look like if you were born a Simpson? Now is your chance, click on this link to get Simpsonized. You upload your picture and you can add facial hair, and pick a hairstyle and all that crap. It's kinda silly, but like most things you find on the internet it's an amusing enough way to kill a few minutes. Be warned, you have to see that scary ass Burger King guy for a minute when you first click on the link. Here's me, or as close as I could get (which is not very close):

They're doing a great job advertising the hell out of The Simpsons Movie with stuff like this and the 7-11/Kwik-E-Mart thing complete with real Krusty-O's and Buzz Cola. By the way, the Buzz Cola is really quite disgusting. Kinda tastes like a mix of Jolt and that pink bubble gum flavored medicine you used to get when you were a kid. I drank one and decided the rest would be better randomly located on my shelf, and not in my stomach. Like this one for example:

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

MGM's Midnite Movies Strike Back!



For a while one of the most sought after bits of DVD release news for Horror Nerds ® like myself was the announcement of the lineup for MGM's Midnite Movies line. Due to some complicated reasons I don't fully understand there were a grand total of no Midnite Movies releases last year. Luckily they're back this year and if you head over toDVD Drive-In you can sneak a peak at the covers. This is kinda old news that I'm sure most of you have heard, but this is the first time that the covers have been revealed as far as I know. I know I'll be picking most, if not all, of these up on September 11th. I really love the title The Earth Dies Screaming, I think I might steal that for my upcoming sequel to the Werewolf in Unnecessarily Short Gym Shorts compilation.

Monday, July 16, 2007

Earth Vs. The Spider: The DVD Cover



Thanks to Greg I was able to obtain an image of high enough quality to use for a DVD cover. So I put this one together based on the Rhino template (from the pre box set releases). Sadly, since the spider is very dark you can barely make out Crow, but you know he's there, so I think it's okay. I actually tried flipping the poster art but it looked awkward.

I'm adding it to the original post, but I wanted to make sure everyone got a chance to see it and print it out if they want. I've personally got about 50 custom MST3K covers printed out and they look really cool lined up on my shelf, so I always like to have DVD covers anytime I make a new DVD from an .avi file or one of the DAP DVD releases. I figure at least one other person out there likes to as well. If anyone catches any typos let me know. Last time I put a cover up I had Mike on the back and Joel's name on the front.

And, if you'd like the 300dpi cover, just click here to download it from Filesend. Thanks again Greg!

Sunday, July 15, 2007

MST3K Earth Vs. The Spider - Review



This is a great episode that I really had fun watching. It starts with a hilarious short called Using Your Voice, hosted by a mean looking old guy who mumbles a lot. It's filled with countless charming extreme closeups of ugly mouths and crooked teeth. And hilarious scenes of awkward public speaking gone terribly, terribly wrong. The feature is some fun old 50's giant bug goodness that's pretty entertaining on it's own. It's got some actually fairly decent looking effects, plus, the girl in the movie, June Kenney, total babe. You can't see the spider in the screenshots, but I assure you, there is a spider. And it is big. Just wanted to assure you that the spider part of the title is not misleading. However, it only attacks this one small town, so I don't know where they came up with this "Earth vs." business. I guess "Earth vs. The Spider" sounds better than "Dumb White Teenagers in a Small Town vs. The Spider".

Earth Vs. The Spider is one of the several Bert I. Gordon pictures to be featured on the show over the years. By my count they did 8 films directed by the notorious B.I.G. (sorry, I had to do it). Bert was a man absolutely obsessed with the idea of big-ass people or creatures wreaking havoc on regular sized people or creatures. Just look at his filmography: Beginning of the End, The Amazing Colossal Man, Village of the Giants, Food of the Gods, Empire of the Ants....roughly half of the 20 or so films he directed feature some kind of giant living thing, or things attacking people. He's the reverse Charles Band. While Charles can't get enough killer puppets or dolls, Bert loved to have giant mutants killing people.

I'm submissive in a 50's kinda way
Oops, slipped on a little bit of your dad there


Here's the very cool poster from the movie. If anyone has some decent quality artwork from the movie, higher resolution poster or a still or something, I can get a DVD cover made for this one.

And for no good reason here's also a little logo I came up with. Making logos for shows that stopped being made 10 years ago, yep, I know how to get the most out of my valuable free time.



If you miss the show, fear not, Mike is still in the movie heckling business with both Rifftrax, which has been around for about a year now, and he's just started The Film Crew along with MST's very own Bill Corbett and Kevin Murphy. They've only released one Film Crew DVD so far, for a Rue McClanahan stripper movie called Hollywood After Dark, but it's very funny and well worth picking up. Killers From Space is the next Film Crew DVD, it's out in August and I can't wait.

Cover art can be downloaded here. See the post above this one for a look at the image.

Saturday, July 14, 2007

Jesse and the Rippers - Forever


I just found this while going through my old stuff, it's only one track but I thought it'd be fun to post. This is the song Forever by Jesse and the Rippers from the show Full House. For anyone who doesn't know, Jesse and the Rippers was Uncle Jesse's (not to be confused with this Uncle Jesse) band, and they finally hit it kinda big and used this song for their music video. I downloaded it like 2 years ago for a CD I was making for my ex-girlfriend, it got a pretty good laugh, so I recommend using it if you're ever making a compilation for anyone familiar with Full House. It's not as bad as you would think, it sounds pleasant enough, it's got a decidedly optimistic "Christian Rock" feel to it (not like those hip musicians with their complicated shoes!), and the solo is kick-ass. Well, semi kick-ass, at least for such a wusstacular song.

While I'm on a terrible 80's television referencing roll here, ALF could've totally sued Full House if they'd had the mind to. ALF came out in 1986, featuring a family called The Tanners. Full House came out in 1987, also featuring a family called The Tanners. Coincidence? I don't know, probably. I have absolutely no point at all here, just saying, ALF could've used the money to step up the ALF effects. Anyway, I hope you enjoy the song that put Jesse and the Rippers (was the Ripper part a Judas Priest reference?) on the map. For that one episode.

Sunday, July 08, 2007

Nora Orlandi - Lo Strano Vizio Della Signora Wardh


This is from Sergio Martino's giallo Lo Strano Vizio Della Signora Wardh (The Strange Vice of Mrs. Wardh) starring George Hilton and the gorgeous and frequently naked Edwige Fenech.

There are like 7 tracks called "The Strange Vice", when you open the folder those tracks are listed as "Strange Vice, Strange Vice 2, Strange Vice 3..." and so on. So if you're burning a CD and want it in the proper order just put them in where they should go. "Strange Vice" goes in at #6, "Strange Vice 2" goes in at #8, so just put them in order after that whenever a "Strange Vice" appears on the tracklist. Sorry, I hope it's not too confusing for anyone, that's just how the tracks were when I got it.

1. The Strange Vice Main Version (01:51)
2. The Strange Vice Main Title (00:13)
3. Edwige Hammond Pleasure (tema a) (02:01)
4. The Pleasure Of Pleasure (M31) (00:49)
5. Dies Irae (M8) (00:29)
6. The Strange Vice (M14) (00:56)
7. Obscure Remembering (M18) (00:57)
8. The Strange Vice (M32) (01:16)
9. Dinner Time (02:04)
10. The Strange Vice (M15) (01:04)
11. Blood Heaven (M42) (00:48)
12. The Strange Vice (M43 Sec) (01:59)
13. Dreaming Of A New Life (M1) (01:08)
14. Edwige in dodici ottavi (M41) (02:05)
15. Samba With Edwige (M11) (01:57)
16. The Strange Vice (M22) (01:22)
17. Shakin' With Edwige (M6) (03:07)
18. Slow With Edwige (M12) (02:07)
19. Obscure Remembering 2nd Part (M21) (01:06)
20. The Strange Vice (M43) (01:51)
21. The Blade Pleasure (M41) (02:07)
22. The Strange Vice Love Theme (M22) (01:29)
23. The Nights Of All The Night (M43) (03:38)
24. Sophisticated Edwige (tema a) (02:13)
25. Dies Irae 2 (M9) (02:09)
26. The Strange Vice (M38) (00:56)
27. Body Fox (M35) (00:17)
28. Descending (M2) (00:51)
29. The Strange Vice Climax (M45) (01:51)

Heaven help whoever is ... NEXT!

Saturday, July 07, 2007

Don't Wake Me Up If I'm Dreamin'


Here's a funny little item I found the other day, the soundtrack from California Dreams. If you're not familiar with California Dreams it was a show put out by the same people behind Saved by the Bell. It was pretty much the same damn thing as Saved by the Bell, but the kids were part of a band called, cleverly enough, California Dreams. A band whose songs don't really match, listening to this soundtrack it really sounds like 3 or 4 different bands due to the multiple singers throughout the 12 tracks.

I used to watch it back when it came on, but I don't remember much about it. I do remember that it had one of the most unintentionally hilarious episodes in television history, right up there with when Eddie got his ass handed to him by The Dragons on Family Matters. The episode I'm referring to is called Tiffani's Gold, where Tiffani (played by Kelly Packard, who was later on Baywatch) gets addicted to steroids in order to to become a kickass volleyball player. Who doesn't remember the outbreak of steroid use among teenage girl volleyball players in the mid 90's? It was an epidemic. For a glimpse of the hilarity, have a look here. Now don't get me wrong, steroid use is nothing to make fun of, however a teen comedy show with acting as corny as was usually on display here has no business trying to tackle serious drug abuse issues. California Dreams, you're out of your element.

1. This Time
2. Castle on Quicksand
3. Everybody's Got Someone
4. It's Gonna Be Rain
5. Let Me Be the One
6. If You Only Knew
7. One World
8. If You Lean on Me
9. If It Wasn't for You
10. Love Is Not Like This
11. Heart Don't Lie
12. California Dreams Theme

Surf Dudes With Attitude!

Twinkie Executioner

I actually intended to throw this up on here on July 4th, but it slipped my mind. This is really old picture I took in my younger, less intelligent days. Well, less intelligent, or less afraid of death, whichever you prefer. When my friend and I were about 13 we were at his house goofing off sometime in December. We were digging through a drawer looking for something when we stumbled upon a couple of old packs of firecrackers. These things were probably 3 or 4 years old, we weren’t sure they would’ve even worked, but we had access to a lighter, and our curious minds got the best of us. To most kids lighting off firecrackers would've been plenty fun, but we wanted a little something more. In our infinite wisdom we decided to stuff one of the firecrackers into a Twinkie and attempt to capture the explosion on camera. (It was this same wisdom which led to us lighting off a pack of Jumping Jacks inside of his old garage later that year. It was a storage garage, no cars or oil or anything explosive, but needless to say, don’t do that.) My friend was on lighter duty and I was the photographer. So I got into position and my friend fired up the lighter and slowly approached the Twinkie. Now for whatever reason the second the fuse was lit the firecracker, along with the cream filled dessert in which it was encased exploded instantly, sending yellow chunks flying everywhere and damn near blowing our eardrums out. There was no delay at all, no time to prepare or anything, the damn thing just went off. Luckily neither of us were hurt at all. I think that was our last winter firework experiment.

Somehow I was actually able to catch part of the explosion along with one of the hands of my genuinely terrified friend with the cheap ass camera I owned at the time, probably a Fuji instant camera or something of similar quality. I think that the sudden explosion startled me enough that I pressed down on the button right when it went off. I know I seem to have some sort of weird Twinkie fixation now, given my Batman post a few weeks back followed by this, but I felt like posting this because it’s one of my personal favorite pictures I’ve taken. And since I’m bored, here’s the Twinkie Executioner Art Print (available for a limited time in the Manchester Morgue shop):

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