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FEARNET.com News and Reviews

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    American Horror Story creator Ryan Murphy recently announced that Season Four will have a carnival theme. This is exciting news, especially for fans that circulated the rumor during Coven, based on clues they found in the finale, and throughout the rest of Season Three. Because each season stands alone like an entire series, the show-runners are known for putting clues in one season that hints at the theme for the following season. For example, there are many hints to what lies ahead in the first season, known as Murder House. Moira acts as an angel of death when she unplugs her terminal mother's oxygen machine, and becomes the literal Angel of Death in the second season, kissing characters goodbye and whisking them away to heaven. Leah talks about the devil being real. Hayden remarks to Ben at one point that he can "get back to Saint Vivien." Vivien even dresses as a witch for Halloween, which might have been a hint for the plot of Season Three.
     
    When I heard the news that the fourth installment in the series would take place at a carnival, I started to wonder what clues exist in the past that have foretold the future of American Horror Story. After revisiting some of the previous seasons, I found a few moments that stood out. Read on to see what clues I discovered, and what could possibly be in store for us fans in the upcoming season!
     
    Season One - Murder House:
     
    AHS10
     
    1. Several references to people being crazy.
     
    At times, it seems that the first season of American Horror Story holds just as many nods to insanity as season two. The word "crazy" is probably mentioned on at least ten different occasions. Vivien accuses Ben of acting crazy when Moira complains about his making advances; Ben asks "Is everybody crazy?" at one point, Billie Dean Howard tells Violet that when you're chosen, "you either get with the program, or you go crazy," and poor Vivien even goes to an asylum. All of these indications point to the main theme of the following season, Asylum, where the main setting was at Briarcliff Manor, a mental institution.
     
    AHS7
     
    2. "I'm not your priest, Tate" - Ben Harmon to Tate Langdon
     
    In the twelfth episode of season one, Ben and Tate have their final reconciliations. Tate tries to win back his old shrink's friendship, with little in the way of success. Ben explains to Tate that he doesn't deserve forgiveness for his many crimes, when he can't even admit to committing them in the first place. Tate then lists his ill deeds, hoping to gain some mercy. Sadly, for Tate, Ben passively responds, "I'm not your priest, Tate. I can't absolve you for any of this." Despite Tate's losses, the fans of the show gained a big clue, since Asylum carries such a heavy religious theme.
     
    Season Two - Asylum:
     
    AHS1
     
    3. "You expect me to stand by as some witch doctor comes in here..." -- Dr. Thredson
     
    When a desperate family brings their disturbed son to Briarcliff Manor, the story they tell convinces Sister Jude and the Monsignor that their boy needs an exorcism. Apparently, the boy has not only killed the family's cow, but also eaten its heart, and spoke in a strange language the family had never heard before. Skeptical, Dr. Thredson pleads with the Monsignor to reconsider a medical solution instead: "You expect me to stand by as some witch doctor comes in here..." but before he can finish, the Monsignor cuts him off, and the procedure is suddenly underway. The fact that one of the characters actually mentions the word "witch" is obviously a big hint for the future of American Horror Story.
     
    AHS3
     
    4. Telekinesis
     
    Despite its gloomy realistic setting, Asylum contains several instances of telekinesis. When the Monsignor, Dr. Thredson, and the priest are performing the exorcism in episode two, "Tricks and Treats," the possessed boy sends the priest and his wheelchair flying across the room. Later, after the devil has entered Sister Eunice, she uses her telekinetic powers to shoot Dr. Arden into the wall after he strikes her. Telekinesis has long been associated with witchcraft, thought of by some as a product of darker powers manifested from Satan. In the next season, many of the witches display telekinesis, and are eventually tested for this ability as one of the Seven Wonders.
     
    AHS9
     
    5. "Cremation is a Pagan process." -- Monsignor to Dr. Arden 
     
    After Sister Eunice's untimely death, Dr. Arden is coming apart at the seams. Arden always cared for Sister Eunice, but was unable to express himself articulately, probably because he is such a withdrawn, introverted man. Or, it could be because he's a sociopathic ex-war criminal, but I'll let the viewers decide. As Dr. Arden and the Monsignor discuss their plans for the body, Timothy is shocked to hear that Arden is choosing cremation over a burial to commemorate the late nun's life. "Cremation is a Pagan process," the Monsignor commented, taken aback. This moment is not only powerful in an emotional way, but it hinted at the Pagan practices that lie ahead in Season Three.
     
    Season Three - Coven:
     
    AHS5
     
    6. Papa Legba
     
    To be accurate, Papa Legba existed long before American Horror Story was ever created. A mythical creature in Haitian voodoo, he serves as a sort of gatekeeper between worlds, allowing or denying humans the right to speak with spirits. However, when Papa Legba arrived on Coven, quite a few fans took it as a big clue that there would be a circus theme for the fourth season. After all, with his top hat and strange attire, it's not that hard to picture this eerie character under the big top.
     
    AHS2
     
    7. "I'm going back to Hollywood, where people are normal!" -- Madison Montgomery
     
    There are a few subtle references to Hollywood and stardom in the third season, including Madison's dramatic statement, "I'm going back to Hollywood, where people are normal!" It could just be that there are many nods for movie stars because Madison is a celebrity herself, but it's also probable that there will be an inclusion of fame in the upcoming season. Perhaps one of the carnival's main attractions dreams of making it big one day in film.
     
    AHS8
     
    8. Myrtle yells out "Balenciaga!" when she burns at the stake.
     
    When Myrtle burned at the stake (for the second time), fans everywhere were stunned to hear her last words were "Balenciaga!" No one really knew what it meant, and everyone wondered if it was a suggestion of things to come in the fourth season. It turns out, there actually might be a connection that makes sense according to the rumors that Ryan Murphy has already confirmed. A German woman named Brigitte Hoss who lived during the 1950s had a father named Rudolf Hoss, who was a commander at the Auschwitz concentration camp during World War II. In the 1950s, Brigitte left Germany, and took up modeling at the Balenciaga fashion house in Madrid. Since Ryan Murphy has stated in recent interviews that Jessica Lange is practicing her German accent for the new season, and its going to take place in the 1950s, it's possible that Lange will be playing Brigitte. She could also be Brigitte's mother, with Sarah Paulson playing Brigitte, since it would be more age-appropriate.
     
    AHS6
     
    9. Myrtle plays the Theremin.
     
    At one point, while Cordelia is working in the greenhouse, Myrtle stands alongside her and plays the Theremin. She explains to Cordelia that the Theremin is an old instrument that was used in horror movies in the 1950s, adding to my suspicion that Hollywood will be included in some way in the fourth season, especially because Ryan Murphy said that the main time period will be the 1950s.
     
    AHS4
     
    10. The Red Scare
     
    Mentioned in scene with Marie Laveau, Fiona Goode and the witch hunters, the Red Scare was an event that occurred during the Cold War, led by Senator Joseph McCarthy. After World War II ended in 1945, Americans feared that the Soviet Union would use their nuclear weapons to bomb the U.S. at any given moment. This paranoia is part of what led McCarthy to campaign against the spread of communism, and those he claimed were spies for Russia. Several famous actors were blacklisted during McCarthy's reign, and even if they were found innocent, their name had already been dragged through the mud so badly that their career was demolished. This reference to McCarthyism could be a metaphorical comparison because of the actual witch-hunt in Coven, but it could also be a clue for season four, especially with the time period, and other references to Hollywood throughout Season Three.
     
    I didn't find any hints for this, but I'm wondering if the writers will bring up the Hartford Circus fire in Hartford, Connecticut. It occurs in 1944, which is only a few years prior to the announced setting, the 1950s, and they usually have more than one time period in a season. No matter what they decide, one thing's for sure: they have more than enough historical information to pick and choose from.
     
    What clues did y'all find this past season? Let me know in the comments, and be sure to leave your own guesses, too!

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    Book of the Dead

    In the Evil Dead franchise, the Book of the Dead - also known as the Necronomicon Ex-Mortis - is quite literally a book bound in human flesh, and inked in human blood. Though inspired by the stories of H.P. Lovecraft, the frightening truth is that books made of human flesh are more than mere fiction, and many of them are housed in places you'd never expect...

    Necronomicon

    As reported by publishing website Galley Cat, three real-life Necronomicons were discovered in Harvard University's library several years back, their covers wrapped in dry, crackling human flesh. The practice is called Anthropodermic bibliopegy and was pretty common back in the 17th century, with many anatomy texts from the period wrapped in the skin of dissected cadavers.

    The three books in Harvard's macabre collection range from a book of Roman poetry to a book on French philosophy, with the other book - a treatise on medieval Spanish law - bound in the remains of a man who was flayed alive.

    Similar books can be found at Rhode Island's Brown University and the University of Georgia, and inscriptions on the inside typically indicate the horrifying truths behind their creation.

    Many believe that the real Necronomicon is being hidden at a New England college. Read all about it!


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    You might not think of swamp eels as something you'd even want to touch, much less eat for dinner... but in other parts of the world, particularly Asian countries, the creatures are considered a delicacy. That could prove to be a big problem, as a new study has revealed that over 25% of eels sold in Asian markets were found to contain live Gnathostoma– parasitic worms of the family known as nematodes. 
     
    Gnath2
    Photo: CDC.gov
     
    The study, conducted by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention was recently published in the quaintly-named journal Emerging Infectious Diseases (and later brought to our attention by I Fucking Love Science). It reports that 13 out of 47 eels purchased at Asian markets in the US (most were imported legally from Bangladesh) were contaminated with Gnathostoma
     
    Now this is where things get really creepy: certain larval stages of the worm, when ingested by humans, can burrow through the intestinal walls and into other organs, including the skin and central nervous system. If the worms are not removed (usually through surgery), the infestation can lead to meningitis and other potentially fatal diseases.
     
    Gnath1
     
    The CDC recommends the best method of preventing infection is to cook the eels thoroughly (the same precaution extends to freshwater fish, shellfish and poultry), but personally I'm going to go that extra step and just not eat any swamp eels ever.
     
    By the way... do you live in New York City? Do you drink the tap water? Wait till you see what's wriggling in every drop!

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    As a composer, I'm quick to acknowledge the role of music in setting the tone for a horror film, and while theme songs with lyrics and vocals can be just as effective as an instrumental score, there are definitely risks involved: along with clothing and hairstyles, songs tend to anchor a film to the year it was made, and as tastes change, a pop tune can be exposed as a quaint and silly relic of its decade. Then again, some of those tracks were pretty goofy to begin with, and nothing could have saved them.
     
    With that said, I love every one of these oddball themes to death (even the truly painful ones), so I'd like to share with you the best of the weirdest, straight from one of my more... uh, let's say “eccentric” party playlists. Let's rock!
     
    Fat Boys: “Are You Ready for Freddy?” (A Nightmare on Elm Street 4: The Dream Master, 1988)
     
     
    You're going to encounter a few dubious hip-hop tracks on this list, and mainly for one reason: in the late '80s, when rap artists were huge on MTV (you know, when the “M” actually stood for “Music”) and the Nightmare on Elm Street franchise still ruled the box office, studio execs were obviously convinced that combining the two would be instant bank. So they paired up Freddy Krueger, the child-murdering bastard son of 100 maniacs, with the hip-hop equivalent of the Three Stooges, and even let Freddy himself kick a rhyme or two. What?
     
    Paul Zaza: “The Ballad of Harry Warden” (My Bloody Valentine, 1981)
     
     
    It might be a bit unfair to slam this nutty tune written by talented composer Zaza, because in a way it ties organically with the folk legend that forms the basis of this classic Canadian slasher. But after the events of the film's finale, this soft-rock tune kinda takes all the wind out of the claustrophobic terror that precedes it. It's a fun song on its own, though, and a sure winner on horror karaoke night.
     
    Michael Jackson: “Ben” (Ben, 1971; Willard, 2003)
     
     
    Not even the King of Pop is exempt from the curse of cheesy horror themes, and this song bears the added distinction of being the only love ballad ever written for a rat. I suppose Jacko deserves some slack-o, since he was just a kid at the time, but I have to wonder if he actually knew the song would accompany a movie about a young man and his army of killer vermin? Believe it or not, the single was a #1 hit – one of only two songs on this list with that distinction. The tune got a knowing nod in the 2003 remake of Willard, where it accompanies one of the film's most unpleasant scenes (at least for a cat-lover like myself).
     
    Burt Bacharach & Mack David: “The Blob” (1958)
     
     
    Here's the other #1 hit song on this list: Bacharach, one of the most celebrated songwriters of his day, co-wrote the jiggling mass of musical insanity (performed by “The Five Blobs,” a.k.a. singer Bernie Knee) that accompanies the original Blob's nutty, squiggly animated opening titles. It seems to be setting up the film as an over-the-top parody, despite the fact that the story itself is played pretty straight. Bacharach sure had a way with a hook, though; just try getting this one out of your head...
     
    “Don't Go in the Woods" (Don't Go in the Woods... Alone!, 1981)
     
     
    An attempted parody of the vintage nursery rhyme “Teddy Bears' Picnic,” the end-title ditty from this hilariously awful backwoods slasher is one of the few titles on this list that was actually meant to be humorous... I think. Considering composer Kingsley Thurber wasn't much better at crafting parody songs than the filmmakers were at writing a horror screenplay (although Thurber did eventually find success in video game music), the end result will probably have you reaching for the STOP button to avoid permanent brain injury.
     
    J. Geils Band: “Fright Night” (Fright Night, 1985)
     
     
    The '80s were a simpler, more naïve era in popular entertainment, and once again it seemed like a slam-dunk to hire one of the decade's highest-charting rock bands to punch up the humorous and playful aspects of Tom Holland's vampire classic. The fact that practically no one – including serious fans of the film – remembers this song at all is proof enough that the decision didn't exactly click with audiences.
     
    Second Avenue Rhumba Band: “Goin' to a Showdown” (Maniac, 1980)
     
     
    Some of you might object to my inclusion of this dorky dance ditty, simply because it's so closely tied to Bill Lustig's original splatter classic... and admittedly it does illustrate the doomed decadence of disco's dying days, accompanying the strutting and posing of a model whom psychotic killer Frank Zito (Joe Spinell) has targeted for death. But as a stand-alone work, this song is, frankly, pretty awful. While the piece is credited to “Aural Exciters” on the soundtrack LP, I'm partial to the band's gloriously cheesy original handle, which refers to a group founded by dance music artist Don Armando.
     
    Syreeta: “Happy Birthday to Me” (Happy Birthday to Me, 1981)
     
     
    I'm not sure if Columbia Pictures just didn't want to cough up the licensing fees for the traditional “Happy Birthday,” but the song that actually made it into the end credits of this studio slasher is kind of amazing. While the lyrics are pretty wacky, and the delivery is probably too quaint for modern tastes, performer Syreeta Wright is indeed an excellent singer, best known as the co-writer of the Motown classic “Signed, Sealed, Delivered.” If only she'd written this one, it might have been a winner as well.
     
    Reggie Bannister: “Have You Seen It?” (Phantasm IV: Oblivion, 1998)
     
     
    In the original Phantasm, music was a key element to the characters of Reggie and his band-mate Jody (Reggie's tuning fork even plays a role in the film's climax), and the fourth installment finally gave Bannister a platform for audiences to hear his real-life music, which overall is a lot of fun. But does his '70s cock-rock delivery fit the apocalyptic tone of the series (which, by the way, will finally see a long-delayed fifth installment)? Well, sort of. It does make good use of the classic Phantasm theme by Fred Myrow and Malcolm Seagrave, which is a definite plus.
     
    Frankie Vinci: “Angela's Theme” (Sleepaway Camp, 1983)
     
     
    Oh baby, this one hurts on so many levels. While audiences were still staggering from the film's notorious, eyeball-searing final reveal (I won't spoil it for you, but you really need to see that), they were promptly slapped upside the head with this epically bad ode to the film's main character, Angela Baker. I never thought I'd find myself writing this, but I kinda wish auto-tune had been around in the early '80s, because those missed high notes will now haunt me forever.
     
    Josh Barnes & B-Dub Woods: “Maniac Cop Rap” (Maniac Cop 2, 1990)
     
     
    Yup, another horrendous hip-hop disaster... only this time we can't even give it a pass for being the product of a musical comedy team. Talented composer Jay Chattaway (Maniac) handled the music, which is pretty catchy on its own, but the lyrics clearly represent a writer waaaay out of his element. While there may be a deliberate attempt at parody behind this one, the end result is about as funny as an ingrown toenail.
     
    Michael Sembello: “Monster Squad Rap” (The Monster Squad, 1987)
     
     
    Oh boy, another failed shot at the “kids love horror and hip-hop, let's mash them together” formula, which as I've already established, almost never works. Composer Michael Sembello, who crafted a fun and exciting score for Fred Dekker's film, kinda dropped the ball when it came to this one... but I'll give it a pass, since it's performed with gusto and features callbacks by the film's young stars, who are having so much crazy fun you can't help but cheer them on.
     
    Paul Zaza: “Prom Night” (Prom Night, 1980)
     
     
    Oh Paul Zaza, I can't quit you... even when you stab me in the ears. In an effort to capitalize on disco's popularity (which was starting to wane by the time this slasher was in the can), the producers wanted to capitalize on the popular club singles of the period, but couldn't afford tracks by chart-topping artists like Donna Summer, so they made up some of their own. The result always seems to bring forth giggles from audiences, especially when Jamie Lee Curtis is strutting her funky stuff.
     
    You might have noticed there are a few obvious choices I'm giving a pass here – songs from movies that weren't meant to be taken seriously (“Attack of the Killer Tomatoes”), or novelty tunes that never appeared in the films themselves (like that horrendous “Chucky Theme” that almost made it into Child's Play). Also, there are a few mind-blowing entries I would have included had I been able to track down embeddable versions, so if you find contenders out there, chime in and I'll include your best/worst picks in a follow-up list.

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    The chair creaks as you settle onto it. The candlelight flickers. All around you the ravenous faces of your so-called friends twist in delight as you slowly open the box laid out on the table. Welcome to Dangerous Games! Each week, we'll feature a horror/thriller/monster tabletop game you should be playing. Don't be scared… roll the dice… what's the worst that could happen? 
     
    MMA_box
     
    Monsters Menace America (Avalon Hill Games, 2005)
     
    All right, you big lug, time to start smashing some cities! Don't get distracted now, focus on leveling Pittsburgh! Those fighter jets blasting past your head? Don't worry, keep stomping. Those tanks rumbling down Route 66? Forget 'em, keep blasting your terrible eye beam. Whether you're a giant lizard, a mutated crawfish, or a bloodthirsty abomination, your goal remains the same: you must menace America!
     
    Monsters Menace America is a light strategy game from Avalon Hill for two to four players. In the game you and your opponents each control a giant monster stomping around a map of the United States. You each also control a branch of the military, and the game becomes a tug of war between military might and monstrous power. In the end the last monster left standing wins!
     
    MMA4
     
    Gameplay Mechanics
     
    Before the game begins each player will roll a die to see who gets to choose their monster and branch of the armed forces first. There are six different monster characters: Megaclaw (the mutated crawfish), Zorb (the giant eyeball), Gargantis (the huge praying mantis), Toxicor (the shambling toxic waste monster), Konk (the giant ape) and Tomangi (the Godzilla-esque lizard monster). Each character has a different set of statistics like: their health value, their move speed, their defense rating, and the number of attacks they can make each round.
     
    MMA1
     
    Monsters race to destroy cities, gaining life and "infamy points" which allow them to attack more often. Each player will also, in the beginning rounds of the game, attempt to use their military strength to slow down their opponents. But all militaries will most likely fall by the end of the game. When twenty cities are leveled, the monsters focus on each other, and a final showdown takes place. The last monster standing is declared king of the monsters, and the game is finished.
     
    MMA3
     
    Replay Value
     
    This is the type of game that looks more complicated than it is. When you open this box up to begin to set it all up your friends may balk at the size of the board. But if you can convince them that this game is as simple as it really is then you and your friends will come back to it time and again. This is a great game for middle-grade kids, too, because the monsters and miniatures are great looking, and the rules are quick to learn.
     
    MMA2
     
    Overall Impressions
     
    While some complain that this is a dice-rolling game and little more, I think they're not giving it the benefit it deserves. There isn't a ton of deep strategy to this game, but the game is a fast, luck-based, wild ride. In the game world this is designated an "Ameri-trash" game, a semi-derisive term meaning a game based solely on luck (as opposed to modern European games which use little or no luck at all). But who cares! It's a damn fun game, full of smashing cities, flying rockets, and special powers. I'm a new convert, and I think you should check it out too.

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    New comic book Wednesday has come and gone. The dust at your local comic shop has settled. An eerie silence descends as you finish reading your last superhero book of the week. Now it's time for something a little more sinister. Welcome to Bagged and Boarded: comic reviews of the sick, spooky, twisted and terrifying!
     
    TWD_124The Walking Dead No. 124
     
    Rick and his merry crew of survivors are trying to regroup after a nasty battle. This is your classic good vs. evil showdown with the zombies of The Walking Dead as little more than background noise. The ever-vile Negan and his followers have been putting pressure on the beleaguered "good guys." In this issue Negan's going for the final push, but the survivors hit back. 
     
    Bag it or board it up? This issue is another delivery on the promise of "All Out War" the covers have been screaming for the last few months. Full of action and treachery, this issue is damn fun (and damn stressful). The ingenious plot device of the villains rubbing zombie guts on their weapons shines in this month's story. I don't recommend jumping right in with this issue, but if you've been semi-following along you must read this comic. 
     
    Godzilla_ROE10Godzilla: Rulers of Earth No. 10
     
    Here's a comic for the Kaiju fans out there! Two big humanoid monsters - vaguely King Kong, but with scales - duke it out in Australia. They're brothers, they seem to be in some monstrous quarrel, and then guess who shows up to give his input: Godzilla. Now it's a three-way battle royale as the armed forces try to stun, incapacitate, and transfer the beasts to a safe "Monster Island." What about this sounds like a good idea?
     
    Bag it or board it up? Writer Chris Mowry only has to do half the work in this comic full of power slams, monster screams, and explosions. It's a good old fashioned Kaiju slug-fest, and if you're into that sort of thing you'll be into this comic. If you're not a dedicated giant monster fan you'll find this story weak, somewhat-floundering, and difficult to follow. 
     
    New_Ghost_Rider_1All New Ghost Rider No. 1
     
    Marvel brings a new story, and a new protagonist, to the Ghost Rider franchise. Meet Robbie Reyes, a good kid and auto-mechanic living in East Los Angeles. His younger brother Gabe is in a wheelchair and constantly heckled by neighborhood gang members. The rough and tumble city that they call home is beleaguered with gang warfare and crime. When Robbie "borrows" a car he's been working on to go street racing, hoping to win fifty thousand dollars, he gets more than he bargained for. And so his hellish journey begins.
     
    Bag it or board it up? Wow. If all reboots were this good I'd say we needed a start over button pushed yearly. This comic really shines in a number of ways. The world feels real, which Marvel's always been pretty good at. There are guns and gang fights, people are unfair to each other, and slang and slurs get thrown around with alarming alacrity. The bad guys seem terrible, and I can't wait for the Rider's justice. This promises to be a gory, bloody, knock down drag out kind of comic, and I'm all in.
     
    Ghostbusters_14Ghostbusters No. 14
     
    This second part of the "Mass Hysteria" plot line shows the emergence of Tiamat, the goddess of chaos and sister to Gozer. She's beginning to cast her gaze on the Ghostbusters and it's making New York City get a little weirder. As the 'busters continue to inspect the supernatural cars float in the streets and it rains blood. Gross, right?
     
    Bag it or board it up? This is a fun issue of a sometimes-childish comic. The goofy humor lacks the sardonic wit of the original two movies, but it does capture some of the madcap glee the Ghostbusters cartoon from the nineties pulled off so well. This issue is a fun read, mostly family friendly, and honors the legacy of the Ghostbusters. On a side note: It's a little sad to see Egon illustrated, still looking like the late, great Harold Ramis. His stories, not just the ones involving the busting of ghosts, continue to ignite the imaginations of the off-kilter all over the world. He's missed, and remembered well in these comics.

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    At Friday night's PaleyFest, Ryan Murphy and the cast of last season's American Horror Story: Coven chatted about the recently-wrapped season. But you watched Coven; you want to know about Freak Show, the next season of FX's anthology series.

    The biggest news was that a new actor was joining the fold. Michael Chiklis (The Shield, Fantastic Four) will be the male lead of Freak Show. We have heard hints and snippets about what season four will hold, but now we have a (slightly) more definitive idea. Jessica Lange stars as a German ex-pat who manages one of the last remaining freak shows in Jupiter, Florida in 1950. I have to imagine that this season will, at least partly, be inspired by Gibsonton, Florida, a popular destination for circus performers during the off season. Chiklis will play the ex-husband of Kathy Bates' character, and father to Evan Peters' character - both actors will return for their second and fourth seasons, respectively. Bates and Peters, along with returning actors Sarah Paulson, Angela Bassett, and Frances Conroy, will play circus performers who were "saved" by Lange. Gabourey Sidibe and Jamie Brewer will also return to the series "in some capacity." Denis O'Hare and Emma Roberts are also in talks to return. Ryan Murphy also promised that some actors from the first two seasons, Murder House and Asylum will return.

    American Horror Story: Freak Show will shoot in New Orleans, and is scheduled to premiere on FX this October.


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    Hannibal Episode 205
    “Mukozuke”
    Written By:  Ayanna A. Floyd and Steve Lightfoot & Bryan Fuller
    Directed By: Michael Rymer
    Original Airdate: 28 March 2014

    In This Episode…

    Freddie responds to an anonymous tip, sending her to the observatory. She enters with a gun, but soon exchanges it for a camera. She snaps away before calling the authorities. When Jack arrives, she suggests someone else enter - it’s one of his own. (Yes, we all know where this is going.) Jack goes in and breaks down when he sees Beverly. Sliced into Beverly-sashimi, sealed between sheets of plexiglass like forensic slides. He and Alana deliver the news to Will, who looks numb upon hearing the news. “I want to see her.”

    This is not just a typical field trip. Much like Hannibal in Silence of the Lambs, Will Graham is strapped into several straightjackets, with a plastic mask placed over his mouth so he can’t bite. Then he is loaded onto a dolly and wheeled into a van. At the scene, Jack instructs the investigators to leave them alone. He unstraps Will while holding a gun to him - but it’s not necessary. Will isn’t going anywhere. Jack leaves him alone and Will tries to do his “killer’s headspace” thing, but it doesn’t work. Beverly appears to him and reminds him to just “interpret the evidence.” So he does. The pieces of Beverly stack back together and Will floats around her, almost lovingly, before getting behind her and strangling her, looking her int he eye. “We know each other.” Will sees the killer freezing her, “preserving shape and form so I can more cleanly dismantle her.” She is dismantled piece by piece, like Beverly would do to a crime scene. Unable to see what the killer took from her, Will returns to the here and now. Jack is back, and Will half-blames him for not being in his office when he told Beverly to find him. “It’s the Chesapeake Ripper and the copycat,” Will asserts. “Same person, two masks.” She was looking for a connection between the two, and clearly she found something. He asserts that it was the Ripper she found last night. Jack asks who it is. Will knows, but won’t say. “Beverly made her connection to the Ripper; you have to make your own.” Frustrated, Jack blurts out, “Then why did I bring you here?” “To say goodbye,” Will says simply. Jack has clearly forgotten that Will is human. Back at the lab, with Beverly’s pieces spread out, Jimmy and Brian discover a major piece of evidence - or lack thereof. Beverly’s kidneys are missing, replaced with the kidneys of the Muralist. When they find her kidneys, they will find her murderer. Hannibal is, of course, cooking her kidneys and places them into a little tartlet that looks eerily enough like the mask that Will wore on his little excursion.

    Will is upset that Chilton spoke to Hannibal about his treatment. He appeals to Chilton’s narcissistic side, suggesting that he could be the one who captures the Ripper. He wants to talk to Abel Gideon.  Chilton agrees and transfers Gideon to this hospital, placing him in the “therapy” cell beside Will. Will wants Gideon to admit he knows who the Ripper is, and tells him it was Hannibal who sent Will to kill him. “He is the devil. He is smoke,” says Gideon. “If you never catch the Ripper he won’t be caught. If you want him, you will have to kill him.” Will’s only response: “Fair enough.” Hannibal is curious to know why Chilton would transfer the man who disemboweled him back to his prison. Chilton’s lame excuse is that he thought he would be “useful” in Will’s therapy. Since Chilton “vandalized” his patient, Hannibal wants to analyze Gideon. Gideon has never met Hannibal, but knows him by reputation. He is rather impressed with Dr. Lecter: Chilton wants to be like him; Will has a bone to pick with him. When Hannibal leaves the hospital, Freddie snaps pictures of him. He chastises her, but she is there at Will’s request. Freddie is not happy to meet with Will in the privacy room. She warms to him when she hears what he wants: to open a line of communication to the killer of the bailiff and judge. In return, she wants exclusive rights to Will’s story. They both agree.

    Sure enough, the ploy works, and the orderly opens up to Will after reading his interview. (This is no surprise; it was revealed in the trailer.) “People don’t understand us, but we understand each other.” He admits that he killed the bailiff, but it was someone else entirely who killed the judge. Will needs a favor, one that the orderly is happy to fulfill: “Kill Hannibal Lecter.” Alana visits him later, surprised and concerned that he gave Freddie the interview. Will believes that Beverly died because of him, and Alana puts the pieces together. “What have you done?” “What I had to do.” As Alana leaves, she sees that Gideon is in the facility and goes to speak to him. Alana tells him that Will isn’t the Ripper, to which Gideon responds, “Not yet.”Alana is alarmed, and Gideon offers her a chance to save Will from himself. (Always riddles, this guy.) “When Will’s rage passes, he will either be a killer or not.” Gideon over heard Will’s lethal request, and Alana knows what is going on. She rushes to Jack, who puts a trace out on his cell phone.

    Hannibal is swimming laps when the orderly shows up. He shoots Hannibal with a tranquilizer and he sinks to the bottom of the pool. The orderly doesn’t let him drown; instead he takes him into a back room, crucifies him, then balances him precariously atop a very wobbly bucket. A noose is around his neck, and he is bleeding profusely. Essentially this one position promises lots of ways for Hannibal to die. He can bleed to death slowly, or “kick the bucket” and get it over with. Hannibal defends Will, insists he is not a murderer. “He is now. By proxy.” Hannibal is surprised that Will asked him to do this. The orderly asks him point-blank if he is the Chesapeake  Ripper. According to the dilation of Hannibal’s eyes, he is. The orderly starts to daydream about what the press will call him, but then thinks that, after Hannibal is dead, he will take credit for the kills, take credit for being the Ripper. Jack arrives and warns the orderly away from Hannibal. Hannibal yells, “He’s got a gun!” Jack shoots him, but it is not a kill shot. Before the orderly dies, he kicks the bucket out from beneath Will. Jack rushes forward and catches Hannibal before he can hang himself.

    Dig It or Bury It?

    I’m almost tired of heaping so much praise onto Hannibal. Tonight’s episode was another stand-out. Beverly’s death - or rather, display - was magnificent. I loved that the dripping as her body defrosted became a recurring theme throughout the episode, both visually and, more importantly, audibly.  Will’s “ode” to Silence of the Lambs, with him in the straightjacket and the mask, was fun, but seemed a little unnecessary. Handcuffs weren’t enough?

    I always thought that Gideon died last season. When he came back, I assumed it was just in Will’s mind. But then when other, assumably saner, people also started talking with him - and Alana’s mention of his non-critical injuries - cleared that up.

    I also thought it was interesting that tonight was the only time we ever saw Hannibal as vulnerable and weak. And he was so easily overtaken, which is stranger. It brought a certain humanity to Hannibal, took him from a Freddy or Jason-level monster to just a human monster. And yet, even in his vulnerable state, he is crucified, suggesting he is more than just a man.

    When will we find out what Beverly saw in Hannibal’s basement? My theory is that it was someone else, cut up and displayed in the same manner she was. Maybe Abigail Hobbs or her father?

    Chef’s Specials

    Appropriately enough, mukozuke is a course of sashimi.

    Prophecies?

    Hannibal is not happy that Will tried to have him killed. Jack finally starts to listen to Will and takes some food home from Hannibal’s dinner party to test! Also, there was a shot of Hannibal and Alana in bed together, which I have to assume is a paranoid delusion from Will’s brain.


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    In the run-up to this week's premiere of the highly-acclaimed horror/action feature Afflicted, we've got four exclusive new stills to give you the fever, so to speak...
     
    Afflicted_1
     
    Told through the cameras of a pair of globe-hopping best friends, Afflicted accompanies the travelers as their adventure takes a horrifically wrong turn following an encounter in Paris with a mysterious woman. As one of the men is consumed by an unknown and bizarre illness which begins transforming his body, what began as a vacation video soon becomes a grim document of their terrifying hunt for answers.
     
    Afflicted_2
     
    Written, directed and co-starring Derek Lee and Clif Prowse, the film has already won multiple awards at Fantastic Fest (where it was screened and reviewed by FEARNET's Scott Weinberg), the Toronto International Film Festival and the Sitges International Fantastic Film Festival.
     
    Afflicted_3
     
    Afflicted makes its US premiere this Friday, April 4th at select theaters and On Demand.
     
    Afflicted_4
     
    You can learn more about it at the film's official site and Facebook page, and be sure to check out the trailer below!
     

     


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    Extreme athlete Scott Young can pop a handstand on just about anything... including a moving motorcycle, or the ledge of a 40-story building.
     
    Scott_Young3
     
    With a background in free-running, acrobatics, parkour and movie stunts (including a gig on The Amazing Spider-Man when he was just 15), Young's obsession with handstands in dangerous places (always without safety gear) has taken the UK daredevil around the world, where he's documented his mad balancing act as far away as India and China... where he snapped the photo below, poised atop the ledge of a Shanghai skyscraper, nearly 500 feet up. 
     
    Scott_Young1
     
    “When you do a handstand, you have to focus on the ground in front of you to keep your balance,” Young told the Daily Mirror. “It's more of a mental thing than anything else... you've just got to focus your mind on what you're doing, not what you might happen.”
     
    Scott_Young2
     
    Scott's photos and videos have garnered a huge online following – with the exception of his mother, who is still too scared to watch. “She got a bit annoyed when I showed her the first video,” he explained, “so I've stopped telling her about them now." It was probably this one, also from the Shanghai stunt:
     
     
    Young should think about teaming up with “Russian Spider-Man” Kirill Oreshkin for a series of videos... except they'd probably be banned as hazardous to viewers with nervous conditions!

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    14-year-old Ali Erturk was digging a hole for a fishing pond on his family's property when his shovel struck something... an object which turned out to be the centuries-old remains of an unidentified Native American.
     
    “When I saw it looked like a human skull,” the ninth grader told Salt Lake's KTVX-TV, “then it definitely was a bit creepy.”
     
    SLC_Remains
     
    According to the Associated Press, a team from the Utah Department of Heritage and Arts responded to the discovery and finished recovery of the remains, which were later confirmed by medical examiners to date back roughly a millennium.
     
    “Humans have occupied this valley for up to 10,000 years,” said the team's spokesman, Geoffrey Fattah, in an interview with The Salt Lake Tribune. “We do run into situations where progress runs into the ancient past.” He also said that around six cases of ancient remains like these are reported annually in the state.
     
    Further study will be needed to determine the corpse's age and gender, and Utah's Division of Indian Affairs will also attempt to trace the find to one of the tribes native to that area, so that proper burial rites can be observed.
     
    Another bizarre find in Mexico uncovered not only the remains of ancient Mayans, but also their pets... which were buried alongside them. Awww...

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    Although a lot of questions remain about the status of GhostbustersIII and when it will eventually be produced, filmmaker Ivan Reitman says has made a crucial decision regarding his involvement when the camera starts rolling for the long-anticipated project.

    In a phone interview over the weekend for his latest film, Draft Day, Reitman told me that the death in February of his longtime friend and collaborator  Harold Ramis – who co-starred and co-wrote the first and second Ghostbusters– was a big factor in leading him to decide that he wasn't going to direct the third film.

    "When I came home to Los Angeles from Harold's funeral last month in Chicago, I actually had a meeting with Sony a couple days later, where I told them that I wasn't going to direct Ghostbusters III," Reitman told me. "I had planned on directing it for the three or four years that I had worked on the script, and I could never think of anybody else directing it, because God forbid, it's my baby."

    Reitman says directing Draft Day also played a part in his decision to produce, but not direct, Ghostbusters III.

    "Somehow, the joy I got from working on Draft Day– working on something that's smaller and more dramatic, and realistically-based, (stepping aside from Ghostbusters III) seemed like the appropriate thing to do at this stage of my life, especially having made the two others," Reitman explains. "That and the combination with the passing of Harold, and knowing that he wasn't going to be there, it seemed like the appropriate time to turn the project over to some other fine director who would bring his own vision to do it. So, I'm going to produce the movie instead and go from there."

    Reitman told me he wouldn't get into specifics about the Ghostbusters III at this point – including whether Bill Murray had finally softened his stance on returning for a third film, and if there was any truth to the rumors about Murray and Dan Aykroyd playing supporting roles as and passing the torch to a new generation of actors.

    The filmmaker – who also worked with Ramis on such comedy classics as Animal House, Meatballs and Stripes– wouldn't go into any detail about Ramis' reported contributions to the Ghostbusters III script, but did say his influence will be felt in the film.

    "I can't talk about what we're going to do, but longtime Ghostbusters fans are going to be very satisfied with the film and Harold's legacy will be honored," Reitman says.

    While there's always a chance that the film will fall through, Reitman says the odds of Ghostbusters III finally materializing are about as good as they've ever been.

    "Everybody wants it to happen and the studio is proceeding as if it's happening, so I would say, 'Yes,' it's going to happen," Reitman observes. "There are always unforeseen issues, but yes, I think it will happen."

    Meanwhile, Reitman's Draft Day, which stars Kevin Costner as the Cleveland Browns' general manager under the gun to score a top pick for his team, opens April 11.

    Tim Lammers is the author of the new ebook Direct Conversations: The Animated Films of Tim Burton, which includes a foreword by Burton


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    This is no April Fool’s joke, for the first time ever we will be live streaming our cable channel  here on FEARNET.com during a special week-long event airing midnight to 2 a.m. ET from Tuesday, April 1 through Saturday, April 6. The “Twisted Comedy” block is a celebration of dark and depraved humor from our Neighbors to the North, Across the Pond, and Down Under, featuring the complete FEARNET original series INSIDE NO. 9, WATCH WITH MOTHER, and S.O.S. as well as five episodes of the FEARNET fan-favorite PSYCHOVILLE. 

     

    INSIDE NO. 9: Created by and starring PSYCHOVILLE masterminds Reece Shearsmith and Steve Pemberton. Each episode presents a different spooky tale full of dark humor and surprising developments, with storylines revolving around a game of ‘sardines’ that brings secrets and sins to light in a wardrobe; a hilarious silent-movie homage about thieves trying to steal a priceless painting while avoiding a variety of obstacles; and a primary school teacher who becomes the victim of a good deed.

     

    WATCH WITH MOTHER: A provocative “exercise in experimental entertainment” exploring the dark side of suburbia, and challenging viewers to be disturbed by what is innocent, while laughing at the horrific. Subjects include a Good Samaritan with bad intentions; a sweet old couple who is anything but; and vengeful roadkill

     

    S.O.S. - SAVE OUR SKINS:  Ben and Stephen are two geeky Brits who are desperate to meet their idol, Xena: Warrior Princess, at a fan convention in New York City. Their plans are quickly ruined, however, as they discover that society has completely vanished. Determined to unravel the mystery, the two men embark on a road trip to Canada, meeting a blue monster, a sexy serial killer, and other crazies, along the way.

     

    PSYCHOVILLE: Reece Shearsmith and Steve Pemberton’s creeping tale about an odd bunch of citizens—the serial killer-obsessed David Sowerbutts; the bitter one-handed clown Mr. Jelly; blind millionaire Oscar Lomax; lonely midwife Joy Aston; and the dwarf Robert Greenspan, who believes he is telekinetic—whose lives are entangled when an unknown blackmailer sends them a mysterious message: “I know what you did.”


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    Andrew Lincoln

    After the Season 4 finale of The Walking Dead, yours truly appeared on The Talking Dead in a manner that made TWD star Andrew Lincoln speechless!

    It all started when Chris Hardwick announced they were holding a contest for a fan to Skype with Andrew Lincoln live on the Talking Dead finale. The contest required me to submit a video of myself asking a question related to the show. Almost immediately, I came up with the idea to do it like Lincoln's character in Love Actually (above) and ask my question via poster boards.

    I came up with a question (though, honestly, it wasn't about the question) and got to work. It took a couple tries - holding those cue cards is harder than it looks - and I even re-filmed it in better light once the producers said they loved my idea and requested a better-quality video. This got my hopes up but as Sunday approached, I had not heard anything more from them. I repeatedly heard Hardwick say they would be accepting live call-ins via Skype so at that point, I gave up hope. It was a bummer because I really thought my idea was funny, though I did worry people might not get the reference. Mostly I hoped Lincoln would get it and that I'd get a smile out of him! My wish was granted.

    Talking Dead

    It was not until the video actually aired that I knew I was chosen! They saved me for last, no less! I was starting to worry as the segment dragged on but once Hardwick said my name, I lost it! Even better was Lincoln's reaction - he smiled, blushed, and melted my fangirl heart. Hearing the crowd react like they did was great, too! I was thrilled people appreciated my nerdy reference! Lincoln was so thrown off that he forgot to answer my question but they did actually make amends for that in the bonus segment! Personally, I did not care if he answered it - I was just delighted by the surprise and his reaction!

    Andrew Lincoln

    The excited reactions of my friends was pretty great too - like my friend who called me screaming in hysterical jibberish. The reaction from the internet today has been wild, too! People seemed to love my bit and I can't stop geeking out about it!

    Yes, it's a silly little 15 minutes of fame but all I really care about is the fact that I made Andrew Lincoln smile and delighted what seems to be a lot of fans like me at home!

    To watch the entire Talking Dead episode, you can stream it here on AMC's site. If you prefer, you can watch the clip of just my part below, and you can also find me over on my website, Viewer Discretion Advised!


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    human skin mask

    There's nothing quite as creepy as one person wearing the skinned face of another, as films like Texas Chainsaw Massacre and The Devil's Rejects have proven. Now, you too can wear a face mask of your own, and you don't even have to go through the trouble of carving and peeling!

    human skin mask

    Founded in 2009, The Shoggoth Assembly is comprised of a group of artists who offer their special effects services to movies and various other productions in their home state of Maine, and their incredibly gruesome creations are also available to those outside of Maine, courtesy of their Etsy shop. While you'll find everything from severed fingers to torn off ears in the shop, it is their face masks that really caught our attention, looking very much like the ones Leatherface and Otis Driftwood have peeled off the faces of their victims.

    human skin masks

    The movie quality masks are made of a durable skin-like silicone, and are completely hand-painted. Several different faces are available and details can be customized, including coloring and bloodwork. Each mask can even be given a clown face paintjob or a sewn up mouth, and they can either be made to wear or display.

    human skin mask

    Head over to the Shoggoth Assembly Etsy shop to see all the faces they've got up for grabs, and learn more.

    As we talked about last week, 'human skin masks' are causing quite a stir over in China, where one vengeful man recently tormented his ex-wife, while wearing one!


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     A company called Kreepy Kustomz creates handcrafted horror film-inspired lunchboxes. They have a great assortment of lunchpails and considering the time that goes in to creating them, the prices are really reasonable. These lunchboxes start at $40.00 and go up from there. While the starting price does not include a thermos, buyers can add one on for an additional charge. This Etsy shop also has some amazing minimalist horror poster art for sale. What’s more, the store’s proprietor is also available to do custom work.

    We are focusing on our top five choices that Kreepy Kustomz has available as of this posting but there are plenty of other options available as well.

    Dawn of the Dead

    This Dawn of the Dead lunchbox is hyper simplistic – it only makes use of three colors/shades but it is highly effective and the choice to use blood red as the primary color makes it stand out nicely and look perfectly gruesome.

    Re-Animator

    Kreepy Kustomz Re-Animator lunchbox is perfectly decadent and makes great use of the bright shade of green that is so closely associated with the film. It prominently features several pictures of Herbert West and also showcases several other characters as well as some of the more grotesque imagery from the film.

    Friday the 13th

    This Friday the 13thlunchbox is another standout piece. It sports one of the film’s taglines and has a fantastic assortment of stills from the feature and the highly recognizable logo from the movie.

    Fright Night (1985)

    The Fright Night cover art is prominently featured on the front of this custom lunchbox and the back has a large photo of the legendary Peter Vincent. There are some fantastic snapshots along the sides of the lunch pale, including a classic picture of Evil Ed.

    Critters

    This Critters lunchbox might be my personal favorite. It has brilliantly showcased the cover art from the film and smartly uses black for the background color. The Crite from the film’s cover art looks gigantic and every detail is perfectly easily visible

    *Tip: If you are ordering one of these lunchboxes as a gift, be sure to plan ahead: the custom work takes quite a while to complete and the seller orders the supplies after you place your order.

    Some of the other options available as a lunchbox from Kreepy Kustomz: Hammer Horror Montage, PuppetMaster, Child’s Play, Salem’s Lot, and more.


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    Often I have found myself telling my students, co-workers, interns, and assorted horror movie fans that before diving head first into any media that has been described as “depraved” or “disturbing,” it is important to remember one thing: once you watch something, you can never un-watch it. It will stick with you forever like an unpleasant break-up or a bad tattoo. I give this warning with Mermaid in a Manhole.
     
    Mermaid1
     
    Sure, the abhorrent and stomach-churning description I give here may make it sound tantalizing to some; the fact that it's considered controversial and often labeled as one of the most “extreme” films ever made may rev up that same inner feeling that makes you read banned books, or listen to the music that your parents told you not to. But just remember before you sit down with a bowl of popcorn to view Mermaid in a Manhole: the stuff you are about to watch will still be in your psyche next week, no matter how silly the presentation. Oh yeah, and you won’t want to be eating anything while watching this one. As a matter of fact, you can probably just plan on not eating for the next day or two.
     
    Mermaid is part of the notorious Guinea Pig series from Japan, which consists of seven Japanese ultra-gore flicks released in the 1980s and '90s. Many of the films are “stand-alones” possessing few, if any, linking qualities except for the fact that they are all contain intense gore. The series has been the subject of press notoriety multiple times; the most notable bad/good press occurred when a viewer (actor Charlie Sheen, according to The San Francisco Examiner) watched one of the films and became determined that in fact it was not fake, but a real snuff film. The FBI began an investigation, and the Guinea Pig filmmakers were supposedly forced by the authorities to reveal all the gory tricks they used to create the disturbing realism (not unlike the rumored charges against Cannibal Holocaust). The series gained notoriety once more when Mermaid in a Manhole was found in the vast DVD collection of a Japanese serial killer. Plus, these films have been endlessly banned, forbidden, and chastised in dozens of countries... and possibly a few neighboring planets. 
     
    Mermaid2
     
    In this “forbidden” film, a young boy sees a mermaid in a beautiful river and draws her picture. As a grownup, he returns to the location to find a fetid sewer where the river once flowed, and trapped in the sewer is the mermaid from his youth. He takes her home and places her in his bathtub, but quickly realizes she has advanced, oozing skin infections from living in the sewer. The man decides to paint her picture again as she dies.
     
    So if all the rumors and “extreme” descriptors didn’t clue you in, Mermaid in a Manhole gets pretty nasty. Though the film seems to have a strangely glossy message about saving the environment and preserving beauty, the agenda is repugnantly clear. This film is meant to disgust you with every drop of oozing Rainbow Brite-colored pus and fluid. By the way, the mermaid leaks in seven different colors (according to a extremely meticulous online fan blog). But yet, somewhere in the bubbling bodily goo, this is a good movie; very compelling, well shot, and, in a exceedingly peculiar and disgusting manner, it’s really quite poetic. 
     
    Mermaid_cover
     
    For decades, the Guinea Pig films were not just hard to find in the US, but scarce worldwide. After copious amounts of controversy and banning, the films became a hot commodity on the bootleg circuit, leading to many poor quality 10th-generation VHS dubs floating about. Luckily, Unearthed Films released a nice box set stateside in the 2000s, but this too was in limited supply, meaning that the DVDs are steadily increasing in value. 
     
    Watch this one with an empty stomach and an open mind. 

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    The Walking Dead Episode 416
    “A”
    Written By: Scott M. Gimple & Angela Kang
    Directed By: Michelle MacLaren
    Original Airdate: 30 March 2014

    In This Episode…

    Rick, Michonne, and Carl are still making their way towards Terminus. They come across an old car with a flat tire and decide to camp here for the night. Carl dozes in the car while Michonne and Rick keep watch by a fire outside. There is a snap from the woods and suddenly, they are set upon by a couple angry men with guns. “You screwed up,” snarls one of the men. It is Joe and his group - they were the ones who came into the house a few episodes back. Rick was the one who killed Lou. Daryl appears and insists they let Rick go. “They are good people,” he insists, without coming right out and stating they are friends. Since Rick killed Lou and Lou was Joe’s friend, Joe sees this as a lie, and sets a couple of his goons upon Daryl to “teach him a lesson.” One of the other goons drags Carl from the car and puts a knife to his throat. With this threat to his son, Rick insists it was he alone who killed Lou. Joe simply laughs and gives him a rundown of how the night is going to go: first they are going to beat Daryl to death; then they will “have the girl,” then they will “have the boy,” then they will shoot Rick dead. Then they will be “even.”  Rick knocks his head back into Joe, causing him to fire harmlessly into the air. Unfortunately, he is too weak from hunger to fight back efficiently, though he, Michonne, and Carl all try. A chubby, balding man wrestles Carl to the ground and shoves his face in the dirt. When Rick hears the man’s belt buckle come undone, he goes bananas and takes a huge bite out of Joe’s neck, severing the jugular and killing him almost instantly. Joe’s guys are surprised enough that Daryl was able to kill the men beating the hell out of him; Michonne is able to kill the man threatening her; and Baldy threatens to kill Carl. Michonne intervenes, but Rick growls, “He’s mine.” He viciously stabs Baldy, over and over and over, while Michonne holds Carl. Carl just watches..

    While it is not the first time Rick has killed a human being, it is the first time he did so with such violence and rage. So when morning comes, he is sitting on the ground, soaked in the blood of the men he killed, just staring. He is in shock. Michonne sits with Carl inside the car; he dozes with his head in her lap. Daryl offers Rick a damp rag to clean himself with, so that Carl doesn’t have to look at his blood-drenched face. He sits, and apologizes for hooking up with Joe and his crew. He knew they were bad, but figured that they had a code - it was simple and stupid but at  least it was something. After he lost Beth, he was alone. Rick insists this isn’t on Daryl. “You are back with us, that’s everything. You are my brother.” Daryl appreciates this, and returns the kindness by assuring Rick that what he did last night, “anyone would have done.” Rick’s only concern now is keeping Carl safe. In the car, Carl hears this.

    The group continues to Terminus. A sign shows they are getting close, and Rick determines they will complete their approach through the forest. At the outer fence, they spread out and keep watch. Rick suggests Carl - still traumatized - come with him, but Carl insists he will be fine. Instead, he goes with Michonne, who worries that he is afraid of Rick. She tells Carl about the circumstances around Andre’s death. She, Andre, Mike, and Terry went to a refugee camp. Things got worse and worse there. One day, Michonne was returning from a run and she saw the fences were down. She heard the moans. Mike and Terry were bit, and she could have stopped it. Instead of killing them, she broke off their jaws and sliced off their arms and took them with her. They were meant to be her “ball and chain,” thinking that was what she deserved. The ironic thing was that they kept her safe by turning her into a monster. “I was gone for a long, long time,” Michonne insists. It was Andrea who brought her back; Rick who brought her back; Carl who brought her back. “You don’t have to be afraid of him or me.” Carl says something interesting right here, something that I haven’t yet deciphered. “My dad told me that he was proud of me, that I’m a good man. I’m not. I know what he wants, but I still have these thoughts. I’m not what he thinks I am. I’m another monster, too.” Is he a monster because of the kid in the woods he shot? Is there something else going on? What could possibly keep him so guilty?

    Anyway, Rick buries most of their weapons in the woods before they all jump the fence and sneak into Terminus from the back. They all have their weapons at the ready and sneak into the main building, towards voices. They walk in, and no one seems particularly surprised to see them. Gareth, the “leader” introduces himself and asks if they are there to rob them. “We wanted to see you before you saw us,” Rick tells him. This seems logical to Gareth, and he assures them they have found sanctuary here. He and his cohort, Alex, ask Rick’s group to put down their weapons. They do so cautiously, and Gareth and Alex frisk them. Alex jokes about Daryl’s battered face, and Gareth promises they aren’t those kinds of people. “We shouldn’t have any problems - just solutions.” They are surprised when Alex hands back their weapons, and he takes them on a quick tour.

    The tour starts with Mary at the BBQ. While Mary cooks up plates of food for them, Rick takes in his surroundings suspiciously. He spies the prison riot gear, a poncho - and Glenn’s watch hanging from Alex’s pocket. Rick grabs Alex, puts a gun to his head, and demands to know where he got the watch. Alex swears the watch came off a dead person; the riot gear off a dead cop; and the poncho from a clothes line. There are snipers on the roof, and Gareth comes out to diffuse the situation. Instead, shots ring out (not sure who shot first) and Rick’s group runs like hell. They run into a garage, out through a door marked “A,” out into the open, and through another door, also marked “A.” No one seems to notice the pile of bloody human bones they run past. 

    Through the door, they follow voices screaming for help. They have stumbled into some kind of altar. Piles of belongings are neatly arranged, with words written beneath them (maybe where they came from?). On the wall, “Never again. Never trust. We first always.” is written. Michonne realizes they are not trying to kill them - the snipers were firing at their feet. They continue through another door marked “A,” and are back outside. The face a fence, and on the other side of that fence, men with guns aimed right at them. Gareth and Alex are behind them. They are trapped.

    Gareth calls for them to drop their weapons. He tells Rick to go to the train car (again, marked “A”) and if he does, the boy goes with him; otherwise he kills the boy. Rick goes. Gareth sends Daryl next, followed by Michonne. He is very specific about them lining up and staying in the order he called them. Rick demands his son, and Gareth waves him over. In front of the train door, Rick sees empty boxes of powdered milk. Gareth demands they enter the train car, so they do. Rick first, then Daryl, then Michonne, then Carl. They are locked in. From the dark, Glenn appears, followed by Bob, Maggie, Sasha, and the rest of their group. It is not the warm homecoming one would expect. Maggie insists that the new people there (Abraham, Rosita, Tara, and Eugene) saved their lives; they are friends. “Then they are our friends, too,” Daryl asserts. “They’re gonna feel pretty stupid when they find out,” Rick says. “Find out what?” “They’re screwing with the wrong people.

    Dig It or Bury It?

    Well that was intense. It seems fairly clear that those at Terminus are cannibals, operating in a WWII Nazi concentration camp-style. Double the horror; gives new meaning to Cannibal Holocaust. I have to assume that this train car is a “Hansel and Gretel” situation: they are being kept there to fatten them up a bit. I actually thought that this would lead to our group of survivors being killed and forcing us to follow an entirely different group. That’s the kind of thing you could get away with in comic books (again, I haven’t gotten that far in the comics) but I think that TV audiences would freak out if that happened.

    I am really looking forward to finding out the full horror of Terminus, and find out what kind of monster Carl believes he is. 


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    X-Files icon David Duchovny has been tapped to star as an LAPD detective on the trail of cult leader Charles Manson in NBC's gritty period drama Aquarius.
     
    Duchovny1According to Variety, Duchovny has signed on for the initial 13-episode run, transitioning almost immediately from seven seasons on Showtime's hit show Californication. Plans for the new show likely got a significant boost from the recent success of True Detective.
     
    Set in the late '60s, Aquarius follows a detective and his younger partner on the trail of Manson, a petty criminal who is gathering young female followers to his strange cause. According to the show-runners (including NBC exec Bob Greenblatt, who worked with Duchovny on The X-Files at FOX), the series will not climax with the 1969 Tate-LaBianca murders; the infamous killing spree which made Manson and his “Family” the center of public attention will likely be the focus of future episodes (assuming a second season is picked up.)
     
    The premiere date for Aquarius has not yet been revealed, but stay tuned for more updates!

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    David Blaine Kids Choice Awards

    The 27th annual Kids' Choice Awards took place on Nickelodeon this past Saturday night, which saw teen heartthrobs being honored with orange blimp statues and covered in slime. Not exactly the sort of event we typically find ourselves talking about here on FEARNET, but when an unexpected decapitation occurs live on stage, our interest is piqued, no matter the event.

    As we spotted over on Perez Hilton, magician David Blaine performed a particularly gruesome stunt at the ceremony, which left the audience of children stunned and appalled. Comedian Andy Samberg introduced Blaine and though he at first told the audience that he only brought of deck of cards, because he didn't realize how large the crowd would be, it wasn't long before his head literally leapt off his shoulders, and Nickelodeon's trademark green slime began spewing out of his neck.

    The stunt, which came off like a kid-friendly version of a Victor Crowley kill scene, can be watched below, and the fun begins at the 40-second mark. Take note of the horrified reactions of the children, which makes you wonder if Blaine chose the right audience to perform such a gory stunt for!

    On a related note, Gwar recently decapitated the Australian Prime Minister live on stage, a stunt that caused quite an uproar. Check it out!


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