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FEARNET.com News and Reviews

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    Zombie Burger

    Located in Des Moines, Iowa, and opened in 2011, Zombie Burger + Drink Lab provides one of the more unique eating experiences in the country, and once you get a look at their menu, we're willing to bet that a thought bubble with the words 'road trip' will soon pop up over your head... if it hasn't already!

    Zombie Burger

    As we spotted over on Roadtrippers, not only is this zombie-themed burger joint decorated on the inside and outside with fitting imagery, but their drink and food menus are absolutely jam packed with treats inspired by some of the most beloved pieces of zombie entertainment of all time. Their burger of the week, for example, is a 'Chicken Fried Beth,' a reference to the Walking Dead character's possible fate as cannibal food, while their drink of the day is 'Carl's Chocolate Pudding Shake,' another homage to the show.

    Zombie Burger

    Other items on the menu include burgers with names like 'They're Coming to Get You Barbara,' 'George Romero's Pittsburgher,' 'The Boomstick' and 'Plan 12 from Outer Space,' with their drink menu consisting of cocktails such as the 'Crystal Eyes Martini,' garnished with a bloody eyeball, and 'The Corpse Reviver.'

    Head over to the Zombie Burger website for the complete menu, and to learn more about the world's most horror fan-friendly burger joint.

    Did you know that there's a Suspiria-themed bar over in Japan? Click the link to take a virtual tour!


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    Florida Atlantic University student Viktor Hluben is part of a team that catches sharks for sport and returns them to the sea... but all his experience hadn't quite prepared him for the harrowing struggle that occurred last week, when he hooked an eleven-foot hammerhead shark off the shores of Broward County, Florida.
     
    Hammerhead1
    Photo: Team Rebel Fishing
     
    In an epic battle lasting nearly an hour and a half, the giant predator dragged Hluben's tiny kayak far out to sea, from a depth of 50 feet to over 250 feet.
     
    Hammerhead2
    Photo: Team Rebel Fishing
     
    “It was extremely exciting, an adrenaline rush," Hluben told the Sun-Sentinel. “It's two apex predators going at it.”
     
    Once he was finally able to return to the beach, the team moved in to cut the line and free the shark; their only “trophy” is this video of the tense battle.
     
     
    “We are all about releasing them,” Hluben says. “The only thing running through my mind is as soon as the shark lands on the beach [is] we've got to be diligent and get it back into the water fast.”
     
    An Australian swimmer recently had his own incredibly close call with a massive shark, as shown in this terrifying clip...

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    As lovable as the cast of The Simpsons may be, bringing one of the animated TV family into the real world turns out to be pretty damned unnerving.
     
    Marge2
    Photo © Alexander Khoklov
     
    Moscow artist & photographer Alexander Khoklov, whose works often include some unsettling visual tricks, proved this recently by transforming model Kate Moukhina into a flesh-and-blood version of Marge Simpson, using mainly body paints and real flowers to capture her canary-yellow skin and huge round eyes... and, of course, that famous mile-high tower of blue hair. 
     
    Marge1
    Photo © Alexander Khoklov
     
    “We love Marge, that's why we decided to make her alive using the skills of make-up, hairstyle, floristics and photography,” the artist told the Daily Mail. The face paint was applied by makeup artist Veronica Ershova, and hair stylist  Mikhail Kravchenko created the towering wig from hundreds of real flowers, painted blue and woven into a wire frame.
     
    This video of the model's transformation has become a viral hit, and apparently has been inspiring more shivers than smiles. See for yourself!
     

     

    Of course, the Simpsons are no strangers to creepiness... their "Treehouse of Horror" specials recently made our list of great horror references from '90s cartoons!


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    The Following Episode 211
    “Freedom”
    Written By: Dewayne Jones
    Directed By: Liz Friedlander
    Original Airdate: 31 March 2014

    In This Episode…

    Joe is working with a group of his followers, to prepare them for killing. A woman, Angela, is brought up in front of the “class” and Joe instructs her to remember the serenity and freedom of the time she went snorkeling, and give that freedom to Carla, a woman tied and gagged on the table before her. She takes some encouraging, but Angela plunges the knife deep into Carla’s abdomen. Joe hugs her. Later, while alone, Emma brings up Mandy to Joe, fearing that she is a lost cause. Joe agrees, she has turned out to be a disappointment. Mandy overhears all this and rushes from the room before they know she is there. Robert comes in to speak to Joe. While he promises that he is with Joe, he says that some of the others are questioning him. They know Joe’s past and doubt his sincerity. Plus, Carla had been a good friend to Robert, so her death (or being sent “home”) hit him especially hard. Joe reminds him that Micah is still in their hearts, and their salvation comes from the redemption of others. He promises to take this message back to the others, and apologizes for his doubt. Joe still has his concerns - he is not used to followers questioning him. He sends Emma to smooth over the situation. Emma sits with Robert on his bunk and admits she doubted Joe in the past; he has made mistakes. “He needs people like us to guide him.” She encourages him to have faith. They kiss, and end up having sex. Later, she returns to Joe and finds him watching a televangelist, Kingston Tanner, speaking about Joe to his flock. “Last year, I thought way too small,” Joe admits to Emma. Poe wasn’t the answer; religion is. Joe is bringing about a holy war.

    Another killing, this time two masked men storm a bakery and knife everyone they can as they move front to back. Mike and Ryan’s research on potential cults that Joe could have commandeered (they have a short list of 73 potential cults) is interrupted by the call from the bakery. They arrive on the scene to discover five dead, 12 injured, and no message. A highly unusually trait for Joe. Not far away, a woman named Serena kills a nurse named Terry - a simple but brutal stabbing as she is getting into her car. Serena stuffs Terry into the backseat, takes her hospital ID, and drives off. She uses the ID to sneak into the hospital, which is overwhelmed with the recent rash of stabbing victims. No one notices her slip in. She goes to one of the break rooms, shoves a bag into a locker, and sends a text with the combination. This text goes to two men in the hospital, posing as bakery victims. As soon as the text comes in, they each slip from their hospital beds and retrieve the bag, which is filled with guns.

    It is around this time that Ryan, still at the bakery, realizes that there were five employees brought to the hospital - but only three working that day. The victims were all taken to the same hospital that still holds Luke. This wasn’t Joe’s people; it was Lily’s.

    Serena uses her stolen ID and a nicked chart to get into Luke’s super-secure ward. She goes to him and hands him a phone. Lily is on the other end, promising they are getting him out of there, just “listen to Serena, and soon you will be home.” Her two cohorts, dressed as orderly and patient, come to ward next. Security won’t let them in, then they get a call, presumably to let them know what is about to unfold. All hell breaks loose, with the men shooting everyone in sight. They don gas masks and throw smoke bombs before smuggling Serena and Luke out. Their plan was to escape in an ambulance, but before they can, the cops have surrounded the area. They have to go to plan B. It is not exactly clear what plan B is - something to do with moving through the basement and escaping into the marketplace across the street - but the group gets separated. Luke is trailing blood through the basement, and hides in a storage closet. Ryan finds him, but then one Luke’s “bodyguards” finds Ryan. He offers to help the goon walk right out of there; they are only interested in Luke. The goon is interested; the two of them fight; the goon ends up dead and Luke escapes into the marketplace and disappears. He finds his way back to the hotel where he reunites tearfully with Lily and Mark.

    Mandy is quickly realizing that Corbin is not a good place for her. When Joe is out, she sneaks into his room, hooks up his computer, and gets a phone number from Joe’s classified secret code. She packs up and leaves the compound. A woman picks her up, hitchhiking on an icy road, and Mandy uses her phone. The phone number she calls is one of Lily’s cell phones. Mark answers; she recognizes his voice. Mark is shocked, and won’t confirm if it is him or not. Mandy is scared, but clearly she is looking to join Lily’s crew.

    Joe sees Carrie’s news report on the bakery stabbings, that Lily is mimicking Joe’s crew. “That clever little viper,” Joe drawls. “We’ll show her.”

    Finally, Ryan and Mike are at Ryan’s apartment. They assume the knock on the door is from Max, and Mike goes to open it. It’s not Max, but he recognizes Matt Daniels, head of witness protection, in an instant. Mike immediately begs Ryan to let him explain, but there is no need. Claire is there, and Ryan is positively in shock.

    Dig It or Bury It?

    I’m glad we finally brought Lily back into the picture. I foresee the battle turning into one between Joe and Lily more than Joe and the world. But honestly, this episode was a little lackluster. Even the killing spree in the bakery just seemed underwhelming. I don’t know if it was the way it was shot, the way it was scored, the way it was cut, but that scene just didn’t have the intensity of, say, the bookstore stabbing.

    Prophecies?

    Ryan is elated to be reunited with Claire. She doesn’t want anything to get in the way of them killing Joe. Joe, meanwhile, is waging war on religion, while Mandy has rejoined Lily’s group.


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    Hellraiser Monopoly

    I don't think that anyone reading this right now will disagree with me when I say that there simply aren't enough board games based on horror movies in existence, with very few films over the years making the transition to the board. Thankfully, horror fans are always eager to step in and take matters into their own hands, which is precisely what Hellraiser super fan Brian Sharp recently did, fusing together his love for the film with perhaps the most popular board game of all time.

    Hellraiser Monopoly

    As we spotted over on Horror Homework, Sharp hand-crafted this incredible Hellraiser-inspired version of Monopoly, which allows you to bargain with souls rather than money, and even includes game pieces sculpted in the likeness' of Pinhead and his Cenobite friends. The board itself is of course modeled after the iconic Lament Configuration Box, and destinations include the various levels of the fiery depths. In other words, there's no going to prison in this version of Monopoly, but don't be surprised if Pinhead demands you pay a visit to Hell... do not pass go, do not collect souls!

    Hellraiser Monopoly

    Oh and yes, of course the dice are little miniature versions of the Puzzle Box... would you expect any less?!

    Sharp actually made nine versions of the game, and he sells them from time to time over on eBay, so be sure to keep your eyes peeled, if you're dying to get your hands on one.

    For more board game fun, check out a list of our favorite vintage TV board games, based on shows like The Addams Family and Tales from the Cryptkeeper!


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    Kid Snippets Zombies

    If Bill Cosby has taught us anything in his long and illustrious career it's that kids indeed do say the darndest things, and the YouTube channel Bored Shorts TV is all about that idea. The channel has risen to popularity with their 'Kid Snippets' series, where they give a group of young kids a general topic, and film them talking about it for a couple minutes. They then create skits based on those conversations, laying the audio over top of them acting out the conversations that the kids had.

    Earlier this month they took inspiration from The Walking Dead and used zombies as the topic of discussion, which not suprisingly resulted in a hilarious conversation that serves as an adorable insight into the way that children view the undead monsters that us adults have become so familiar with over the years. Zombies have never been so cute and cuddly, that's for damn sure.

    Check out the hilarious video below, which plays out like a scene from The Walking Dead... as written by 5 year olds!


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    April Fools' Day is always an interesting day on the internet, as nearly every site on the web channels its inner Onion and comes up with fake news stories, in an attempt to fool readers. It's hard to trust anything you read on the internet on a day like April Fools', and quite frankly it would be wise to follow the immortal words of former WWE superstar “Stone Cold” Steve Austin, and just plain not trust anybody.

    Though you were likely tricked at least once today, and disappointed when you realized that some exciting piece of news simply wasn't true, there's no denying that April Fools' Day spices up the internet, and makes for a fun day of web surfing. We here on FEARNET were victims of a handful of pranks ourselves throughout the course of the day, and we wanted to share some of our favorites with you, now that the fun is coming to an end.

    So here's a look at the very best April Fools' pranks of 2014, within this awesome horror community of ours!

    Daryl Dixon

    Though one Walking Dead-themed prank suggested that Norman Reedus had been fired from the show, the more creative bit of April foolery came courtesy of the official Walking Dead website, which unveiled this first look at the cover for the 129th issue of the comic series. The character of Daryl Dixon was created specifically for the television series and this cover teased that Dixon would be making the leap from the small screen to the world of comics. As one fan pointed out in the comments section of the post, the image of “Daryl” was actually a modified image of comic book character Dwight, which spilled the beans on the clever prank.

    Christine Lives

    Over on his official website, Stephen King got in on the April Fools' fun by teasing that he was writing a sequel to Christine, titled Christine Lives. 'Christine Lives picks up where Christine left off,' wrote King, 'and follows the trials and tribulations of Dennis' descent from school teacher to carnival barker as he attempts to evade the smoking tires of fate.' The announcement included a link to a video of King's announcement, which was actually a video of Rick Astley's 'Never Gonna Give You Up,' in disguise. Rick-rolled by the King... a true honor!

    Catnado

    Spoofing last year's Sharknado phenomenon, UK firm Fetch Publicity sent out this piece of promotional art for a faux film called Catfurnado, which promised to deliver “pussy at 100 miles an hour.” The plot synopsis described a tornado sweeping through London and creating 'a vortex of furry vengeance,' and oddly enough the concept for the prank was based on a real story that came out of England earlier this year, where a tornado indeed did sweep cats up into the air. Wouldn't be surprised if Syfy took this idea and ran with it, and I'm honestly not sure I'd be able to avoid tuning in!

    Justin Bieber Puppet Master

    You just knew that the pranksters over at Full Moon would partake in the festivities today and they indeed did, sending out a press release first thing in the morning that revealed the star of an upcoming Puppet Master remake; Justin Bieber. The remake has begun pre-production, company founder Charles Band wrote in the press release, with Justin Bieber attached to play the role of a young Andre Toulon. “With all Justin has endured as of late in the press and elsewhere,” continued Band, “we knew he would bring an authentic gravitas to the role that many other performers could not.” Of course, a Puppet Master remake isn't really in the works, though it sure is humorous to imagine Bieber in a Full Moon film, is it not?! Well played, Charlie. Well played.

    Tarantino The Gawkers

    Mere minutes after I vowed to myself that I wouldn't fall for any pranks today, the folks over at Fangoria managed to pull one over on me, writing up a news story that indicated Quentin Tarantino is working on a new horror film. Brilliantly playing on the fact that Tarantino's script for The Hateful Eight was recently leaked onto the internet, Fango wrote that Tarantino shelved the movie in favor of a home invasion thriller titled The Gawkers, based on his real-life troubles surrounding the script leak. “Sources claim Tarantino’s script follows a Hollywood director who finds himself facing off against a group of vicious home invaders who aim to steal his latest script at all costs,” read the article, which was capped off by the reveal that it was an April Fools' prank. The fact that I actually fell for this one, for a split second, just goes to show how much of a trusted news source Fangoria is!

     

    Hulu had a whole lot of fun over on their website today, teasing fictional spin-offs of popular network shows, which they billed as airing exclusively through their service. One of those shows was In the Kitchen with Hannibal, a spin-off of NBC's brilliant show Hannibal, wherein Hannibal Lecter teaches you how to cook some of his signature dishes. They even went through the trouble of whipping up a teaser video for the show, which you can watch above. Not saying I'd recreate any of the recipes, but this is one cooking show that I'd most definitely watch!

    Wes Craven

    Much like Stephen King, Wes Craven also played a prank on his fans today, over on his Instagram account. He claimed that he had made a horror film in the 70s that was never released and that he finally decided to self-distribute it, including a video that he advertised as being that film's teaser trailer. Seconds into the trailer, Craven popped up on screen and revealed it was an April Fools' joke, proving that the master of horror has still got some tricks up his sleeve. Head over to Craven's Instagram to watch the video for yourself!

    Fright Club

    And finally, film production/distribution company Lionsgate used the various Facebook pages of their most popular films to spread the word about a fictional movie called Fright Club, a 2015 release that brings together some of their most popular horror icons. As you can see, characters like Leatherface, Patrick Bateman, Cabin in the Woods' ballerina and Otis Driftwood are all advertised as being a part of the faux movie, and the poster successfully did its job of fooling many fans on Facebook. The first rule of Fright Club... is don't believe that it's real, because it unfortunately is not!

    Did you spot any April Fools' pranks that we missed? Comment below and let us know about them!


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    Measuring 550 feet tall and capable of carrying over a thousand passengers, the record-breaking “High Roller” officially opened for business yesterday on the Las Vegas Strip in Paradise, Nevada.
     
    High_Roller3
    Photo: Ethan Miller/Getty Images
     
    The main attraction in the shopping and entertainment district known as The LINQ, the High Roller looks both decadent and terrifying, featuring 28 spherical cabins weighing 44,000 pounds each, encased in steel and glass. Each “pod” can hold 40 people, and is equipped with its own sound system and video monitors. The wheel itself, which is lit by 2,000 LED lights in changing colors, takes 30 minutes to complete a single rotation.
     
    High_Roller2
    Photo: Casino Enterprise Mgmt
     
    After three years of design, planning and construction, the High Roller now passes the 541-foot Singapore Flyer (built in part by the same engineering company) to capture the title of the world's tallest Ferris Wheel.
     
    High_Roller1
    Photo: The LINQ
     
    Find out how you can take a spin at The LINQ's official site... and later this summer, you might also want to check out the world's tallest waterslide!

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    High above the Guadahorce River in Spain is a tiny strip of a mountain trail named El Caminito del Rey ("The King's Little Path"), which stretches for two and a half miles through the El Chorro cliffs, over a straight drop of 350 feet.
     
    Caminito1
    Photo: Roberto Lumbreras via Flickr
     
    That altitude, combined with the path's eroded and rapidly deteriorating condition, makes it treacherous enough, but curious trekkers should know that this passage is also only three feet wide, making it the deadliest hiking trail in the world... and there's a body count to prove it.
     
    Caminito2
    Photo: Gabirulo via Flickr
     
    Extreme travel site Thrillist examined the history of the trail, which dates back 109 years, when it was used to transport materials up and down the cliffs. Since it was never built for hikers, there are no real safety precautions between climbers and the sheer drop below. The most recent casualties on the trail were in 2000, when two people slipped and fell to their deaths.
     
    Caminito3
     
    Thrillist also reports that a multi-million-dollar renovation is being planned for the trail, including a wood-and-glass skywalk over the breathtaking Gaitanes Gorge (shown above), so if risking El Caminito del Rey is on your bucket list (and if you're not careful, it might be the last thing on that list), you might want to make your flight reservations soon.
     
    We've found many more dangerous destinations like this one, including this Alpine cottage poised over a 13,000-foot drop!

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    Face Off Episode 612
    “Industrial Revolution”
    Original Airdate: 1 April 2014

    In This Episode…

    The contestants each select a profession. They must create the robot that has taken their place in the industry. In addition, each creation must display a functional moving part. The contestants have four days for this challenge to allow for the extra time fabrication requires.

    The Creations

    Niko selected construction worker. He sculpts cables for the face, but fabricates everything else. It was cohesive, but big and somehow unremarkable. Glenn was impressed with the amount of work that went into, but found it to be clunky and could have been better proportioned. Ve also found it clunky - but fun. Neville thought the proportions were “wacky.” He is not a big fan, but appreciates the fact that it is cohesive. 

    George selected hairdresser. He was originally going to have each breast be hair dryers, but instead combined them into a large one in the center of the chest. Each of his robot’s fingers is a different hair and makeup tool. Ve would go to a salon run by this robot “in a minute.” Neville thought it was beautiful, with elegant line work. Glenn, though the chest shape was strange, found the form near-perfection.

    Rashaad selected firefighter. He was excited about this challenge - fabrication is his thing. I think this was my favorite creation this week, especially with the carefully battle-worn paint job. Neville was impressed with the astonishing amount of work he put in. Glenn thought this was the best Rashaad has shown this season. Ve was blown away.

    Tyler selected doctor, with little arms that came out of the chest to operate with, and a human face hovering over the “robotic” face to add a familiar feel to the robot. Unfortunately, I found it just looked rather scary. In general, this creation looked like a collection of PVC tubes and felt amateurish. The judges loved it though. Glenn was particularly taken with the harness that holds the face out front. Ve liked the fact that it didn’t look too futuristic; it made it feel more familiar. Neville thought he hit all the right notes.

    Daran selected photographer, with a face like a camera. The body was stupid; it looked like a homemade costume for a three-year-old. But I liked the face. Daran was uncomfortable with the challenge - robots and fabrication aren’t his “thing.” Ve can tell he is out of his element. There was no “va-voom” and it missed the mark. Glenn thought that, even if robots weren’t his “thing,” focus on the basics would have gone a long way. Neville thought the codpiece and the silhouette turned it from a potentially sophisticated look to something cartoonish.

    The Verdict?

    Rashaad won. Daran - no surprise - went home.

    Dig It or Bury It?

    I liked the idea of replacement robots, but the professions were a little bland. Luckily, the contestants really brought it with cool creations.

    Prophecies?

    Next week is a vampire challenge. I hope there is some cool twist so we don’t just have a bunch of Bela Lugosi-looking Draculas. 


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    A horrific harvest is coming soon to Greenville, Wisconsin, when students will have a chance to dig up actual human and animal corpses from a secret burial site nicknamed “The Body Farm.”
     
    Body_Farm1
     
    According to the site Wisconsin Sickness, the Body Farm is part of a program at Fox Valley Technical College which teaches students in Forensics how to detect, uncover and gather data from buried remains. The macabre program is based on a similar study founded at the University of Tennessee's Anthropological Research Facility, which was set up to examine the effects of freezing temperatures on dead tissue, and whether natural scavengers are drawn to frozen, buried carcasses. 
     
    In addition to being buried in an open field, the bodies may also be hidden in buildings, cars and swimming pools... but if you're thinking of a road trip to do a little corpse research of your own, you should know that there will be a heavily-guarded fence surrounding the perimeter. 
     
    There's still plenty of macabre sights to see in Wisconsin, however... including this bizarre roadkill art museum.

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    As a child of the ‘80s and ‘90s, it’s probably safe to say I was a gamer before that term was widely used. And much like the rest of the stuff on the planet, things are just not as cool now as they were when we were kids. Since my childhood took place during the decades of Reaganomics and grunge music, I figured it was only right to showcase some of my favorite classic video game bad guys. Pay attention kids, this will probably be on the test!
     
    Coily
     
    Coily - Q*bert
     
    Q*bert was one of the first video games I became obsessed with when I was a kid. Maybe this is where my affinity for snakes also started? In the original Q*bert game, Coily started off as an egg that bounced down to the pyramid’s center where it hatched into the purple snake thingy you see above. It’s sole mission from that point forward was to catch Q*bert and the only way to stop this beast was to use a Transport Disk which would cause Coily to become suicidal and jump off the edge of the pyramid.  Fun fact: in the short-lived Q*bert animated series, Coily here was the leader of a gang of greasers. Evil!
     
    Mario
     
    Mario - Donkey Kong Junior
     
    I’m going a little controversial on this one, I know. Before Mario was the lovable video game character we all grew to love, he was a malicious bastard that partook in animal abuse. After defeating Donkey Kong in the first installment of the series, Mario now has Mr. Kong in captivity. It is the mission of Kong’s son, Donkey Kong Jr., to save his father. It’s Mario’s role now to do what the big gorilla did in the first game which is to basically to keep Jr. here from freeing his beloved daddy. Did I mention that Mario has a whip? Evil!
     
    Robotron
     
    Grunt Waves - Robotron 2084
     
    Robotron 2084 is one of those classic video games that hit arcades everywhere in 1982. (Remind me sometime to explain to you what arcades were.) The game’s story takes place in the year 2084, when the robots rose up and revolted against the humans. A simple shooter game, the object is simple: shoot all the robots. The robots in question come in waves and one of the worst is known as “The Grunt Wave.” Here, more enemies are on screen at one time than in any other wave. The Grunts here aren’t really difficult to kill as they don’t have the capability to shoot. However, the numbers on screen get worse as over time, they speed up and just chase you. Relentlessly. Oh and they also have been known to jump on you without warning. 
     
    Evil_Otto
     
    Evil Otto - Berzerk
     
    In 1980, Atari released the game Berzerk and the character of Evil Otto was delivered unto the world. Taking the form of a simple smiley face, Evil Otto’s purpose was to bounce around and chase the player. There are also robots in the game and if they remain in the maze, Otto moves slowly. However, if the robots are gone and you are the one moving slowly, Otto’s pace will quicken. What makes this worse is THERE IS NO WAY TO KILL HIM! The only way to defeat him is to evade him as he poisons the walls and tries his best to zap you. In the sequel, Evil Otto can be killed but once he goes, more Evil Ottos appear in his place. I honestly cannot think of which option is worse.
     
    Singe
     
    Singe - Dragon’s Lair
     
    Dragon’s Lair was a video game that first premiered on laserdisc (ask your parents) back in 1983. The often times funny story follows our clumsy hero knight “Dirk the Daring” who is on a mission to rescue Princess Daphne from Mordroc’s castle. The biggest obstacle in his way is Mordroc’s dragon servant “Singe.” How difficult can this be? Quite difficult, in fact, because Singe has all sorts of abilities like: running, flying, kicking, head-butting and of course fire-beathing. 
     
    Death
     
    Death - Gauntlet 
     
    I truly have some fond memories of this game. Atari released this fantasy-themed hack-and-slash game in 1985. What made Gauntlet stand out at the time was that you could play it with up to four friends! This was helpful in that, players would run into a wide array of enemies including ghosts, grunts, demons, lobbers, sorcerers, thieves and the worst of them all: Death. Not only is Death (the art above has him look all Grim Reapery) very difficult to destroy, if you were unlucky enough to get near him in the game, he would drain you of your health. He’s Death, after all, and this is what one should expect. Right?
     
    Satans_Hollow
     
    Satan - Satan’s Hollow
     
    Satan’s Hollow was first introduced as a shooter in arcades in 1982. Two years later, the game was converted Atari and Commodore 64 platforms. The main object is to destroy the flying gargoyles in order to then assemble a bridge that must be built over a river of lava. That doesn’t sound dangerous at all! The further you get, these gargoyles start lobbing explosive eggs and rocks to destroy you and the bridge. If that’s not enough, you’re also faced with floating fire spitting devil heads! Once you finally finish building this bridge, you come face to face with Satan. Once you defeat him, the process of fighting the gargoyles and building a bigger bridge to face Satan begins again. So basically, you’re in Hell and repeating the same mission over and over to kill the devil. Yep, that sounds like Hell to me!
     
    Mother_Brain
     
    Mother Brain - Metroid
     
    I can’t really think of much worse than the idea of a moody self aware spiked brain monster that wants to control and destroy things. It’s worth noting that in the original NES version, she had eyes and tusks like an evil brain elephant or something. Her mission in the Metroid games is pretty simple in which she wants full control of the universe where she would bring order by resetting everything back to zero. Mother Brain has been the main antagonist in the majority of the Metroid games in the series.
     
    Eggman
     
    Dr. Ivo “Eggman” Robotnik - Sonic the Hedgehog
     
    In Sonic the Hedgehog, Dr. Robotnik, aka Eggman, is the archenemy of our pointy hero Sonic. He is an egg-shaped mad scientist with an IQ of 300, which translates to him being a “certifiable genius.” Sure, why not? His ultimate goal within the game is to conquer the world and create hit ultimate utopia, called The Eggman Empire (aka Robotnik Empire, Eggmanland, Robotnikland or Robotropolis). He considers anyone who opposes his plans as a prime threat. So basically, that would be you.
     
    Ganon
     
    Ganon - The Legend of Zelda
     
    Ganon here is the final boss you fight in The Legend Of Zelda. He’s the dude who kidnapped Princess Zelda and he keeps her hostage in his Death Mountain lair. That doesn’t sound ominous at all! When Link finally enters Ganon’s chamber, he encounters statues that shoot fireballs while Ganon himself teleports around the room also shooting fireballs. Once you inflict damage upon this tusked beast, he changes color, which shows he’s weakening. At this point, you (as Link) have to fire a silver arrow at him to fully defeat the bastard. But, much like many of the enemies in this list, he returns in the number of subsequent Zelda games that follow.
     
    Gyaba
     
    Emperor Demon Gyaba - Contra
     
    Contra is the side scrolling shooter that debuted in 1987 and took up too many hours of my time as a child. You’re pretty much an armed buff military dude, and you have an unlimited supply of ammunition to kill all the bad guys in your way. This is helpful, as the horrifying monster above is one of the bosses you will encounter. Known as The Red Falcon (or Emperor Demon Gyaba, depending on your source), he is the Earth’s worst enemy and shows up as the main alien antagonist in the majority of the Contra games. His character design is based on H.R Giger’s Necronom IV, which as all of you know is also the inspiration for the Xenomorphs in the Alien movie franchise.
     
    Dracula_CV
     
    Dracula - Castlevania
     
    This one is pretty much a no-brainer, right? Dracula is a bad guy. That is, unless you’re a vampire sympathizer. He is also the main villain that pops up in every Castlevania sequel because, what would Castlevania be without Dracula? The story here takes place in 1691, where you are the whip-toting Simon Belmont. It is your duty, as a member of The Belmont family, to slay Dracula. But he doesn’t make it easy, as there are all sorts of enemies to defeat in his castle including Frankenstein, Igor, The Mummy, Queen Medusa and more. All these classic movie monsters in one video game franchise, and it’s a wonder Universal hasn’t bought the rights yet!
     
    Mecha_Hitler
     
    Mecha Hitler - Wolfenstein 3D
     
    Nazis are rather common villains in video games. I am quite partial to the Nazi zombies in the Call Of Duty games. However, there wouldn’t be Nazi zombies without Nazis, and there wouldn’t be Nazis without Hitler. And what’s worse than Hitler? Mecha Hitler, that’s what! I mean, just look at him! It doesn’t make any difference to me that this game originated as a PC game (this means DOS in ‘90s speak)! He’s coming at you in a giant robot suit with four chain guns a-blazing! There may be the threat that Nazis are breeding mutant soldiers and you may need to desperately escape Castle Wolfenstein, but MECHA-HITLER TRUMPS ALL OF THAT!
     
    Blinky
     
    Blinky - Pac-Man
     
    This little red bastard right here was the bane of my existence in the ‘80s, and I’m sure if I sat down to play Pac-Man now, he’d continue where he left off. Along with his pals Pinky, Inky and Clyde, Blinky is one of the ghosts in the game. He was always the first ghost to exit the center chamber, and and he’d always make a direct path to Pac-Man when “chase mode” was triggered.  In later games, I hear he became kind of an ally to our round yellow hero. But he will never be my ally! NEVER!
     
    Bowser
     
    Bowser - Super Mario Bros.
     
    The final enemy to round out my list is none other than King of the Koopa, Bowser from Super Mario Bros. As I just mentioned, Bowser is the leader of the Koopa race, which basically are evil turtle-like creatures. He’s also much bigger in size than the other turtles, has a spiked shell, horns, razer sharp teeth and is a ginger. If that wasn’t enough, the dude is also pretty strong and agile, he knows black magic and can breathe fire! His ultimate goals are pretty simple: marry Princess Peach, beat Mario (and Luigi), and take control of the Mushroom Kingdom. In the awful 1993 movie adaptation, King Koopa was played by Dennis Hopper. Hey, I just had an idea: a Super Mario Bros/Blue Velvet double feature! Who’s with me?
     
    We have come to the end of the list, folks. I only showcased 15 of my favorite classic video game villains. What are yours? Inquiring minds want to know!

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    If there's anything I have as much of a passion for as horror movies it's professional wrestling, which has been a lifelong obsession of mine since well before the days my parents allowed me to make friends with guys like Jason and Freddy. Not surprisingly, it's been the horror-inspired characters that I've always found myself gravitating towards - guys who looked and acted like they belonged inside the confines of horror films, more than they did the squared circle.
     

    With WWE's Wrestlemania 30 on the horizon, taking place this Sunday night, now's the perfect time to shine the spotlight on some of the scariest grapplers in the history of the business, which is precisely what I'm here to do today. So here are 10 professional wrestlers who have channeled the spirit of horror cinema over the years, and have brought together my two biggest passions in life!
     

    Kamala
     

    KAMALA
     

    I'll never forget my first introduction to Kamala, which came courtesy of a VHS tape at a friend's house, in the formative years of my childhood. On the tape was a segment from a 1980s WWE broadcast, which saw the 'Ugandan Giant' consuming a live chicken, with the feathers of the ill-fated bird dangling from his mouth and stuck in his beard. Unbeknownst to me, the segment was of course faked, but it nevertheless forever made me terrified of the character, who truly felt like a cannibalistic madman that had been plucked from the wilds of Uganda. Kamala was oftentimes escorted to the ring by a handler named Kim Chee and always wrestled barefoot, further driving home the idea that he was essentially an untamed animal. Though the character was toned down in later years, Kamala remains one of the scariest wrestlers to ever step foot inside the ring, and one of the few to actually strike fear in my childhood heart.
     

    Undertaker
     

    THE UNDERTAKER
     

    When it comes to horror-inspired pro wrestlers, they don't get any more iconic or well-known than The Undertaker, who is one of the greatest entertainers in the history of the sport. Undertaker made his WWE debut in November of 1990 and was essentially portrayed as a dead guy who was totally impervious to pain, with an urn serving as his source of undying power. It wasn't long after his debut that Undertaker acquired a manager in the form of the late Paul Bearer, nor was it long before the character become one of the most beloved in the company. Coming to the ring in a black trench coat and stetson hat, and escorted by both Bearer and an eerie, funereal theme song, the Undertaker made a name for himself by zipping his opponents inside body bags and stuffing them into caskets, usually after delivering his deadly finishing move; the Tombstone Piledriver. Undertaker is still a member of the active roster to this day and he puts his undefeated 21-0 Wrestlemania streak on the line this coming Sunday, against formidable opponent Brock Lesnar. May you Rest In Peace like so many before you, Brock!
     

    Papa Shango
     

    PAPA SHANGO
     

    Charles Wright has cycled through countless different gimmicks throughout his career as a professional wrestler, and though he didn't quite achieve the height of his success as the Papa Shango character, it's nevertheless Shango that remains the most memorable to me. You need only look at the above picture to get the gist of the character; a voodoo practitioner who wasn't above using his devious dark magic on his opponents. Decked out in creepy skull face paint, wearing a necklace made of bones and carrying around a smoking human skull, Shango became known for casting all kinds of spells on his opponents, most memorably placing a curse on the Ultimate Warrior, which forced him to uncontrollably vomit in one particularly nauseating segment. The character lasted only about a year in the company, which was plenty long enough to leave a lasting impression.
     

    Mankind
     

    MANKIND
     

    One of the most successful wrestlers in the history of the sport is no doubt Mick Foley, who has become a New York Times bestselling author, several times over, in the wake of his celebrated career inside the ring. Though he made his wrestling debut in the 1980s, under the name Cactus Jack Manson, Foley became a bonafide superstar when he came to the WWE in 1996, repackaged as a deranged, mask-wearing character named Mankind. The idea behind the character is that he was basically a total nut job, and he would often self-mutilate, ripping out chunks of his own hair and stabbing himself in the leg with a fork. He was said to live in boiler rooms with his pet rat and he'd often scream out for his 'Mommy.' Mankind's main mission upon entering the WWE was to destroy the Undertaker, and Paul Bearer ended up jumping ship during their brutal feud, and becoming Mankind's manager. Mankind eventually become a beloved character, like Foley himself, and in the later years of his run was a whole lot less terrifying than his original incarnation.
     

    Kane WWF
     

    KANE
     

    No stranger to horror-inspired gimmicks, Glen Jacobs made his WWE debut in 1995 as Dr. Issac Yankem, the deranged dentist of Jerry “The King” Lawler. It was in 1997, however, that Jacobs brought to life a truly iconic in-ring monster, in the form of Kane, son to Paul Bearer and half-brother of The Undertaker. Story went that Undertaker had burnt down his family's funeral home as a youth, and though he believed that his whole family was wiped out in the blaze, Bearer revealed that Kane was very much alive, and was coming for revenge. It wasn't long before Kane indeed did arrive in the WWF, wearing a mask and full body suit, to cover his horribly scarred appearance. Kane was known for setting people on fire and it was the character that led to the creation of the first ever Inferno Match, where the ring is literally surrounded by flames. Like most of WWE's evil characters, Kane too has been toned down in recent years, and he now wrestles without the mask on, serving as a corporate lackey for Chief Operating Officer Triple H. And no, he's not actually burnt.
     

    Gangrel
     

    GANGREL
     

    One of the coolest characters of the WWE's 'Attitude Era,' in the late 90s, was Gangrel, who was billed as a real-life vampire. Gangrel had the most memorable entrance in WWF at the time, which saw him rising up to the stage and surrounded by a ring of fire, carrying a goblet full of 'blood.' Prior to entering the ring, he would take a sip from his goblet and spew the blood into the air, which would often drip down his fangs and cover his white shirt. Gangrel rose to the epitome of his coolness when he formed a faction known as 'The Brood,' a trio of vampiric characters who would terrorize other wrestlers with 'blood baths,' which saw buckets of blood raining down from the heavens and covering their adversaries. At one point he joined Undertaker's Ministry of Darkness faction, which was comprised of a motley crew of fellow monsters and madmen.
     

    Boogeyman WWE
     

    THE BOOGEYMAN
     

    WWE is known for recycling gimmicks, and The Boogeyman can in many ways be seen as a modern day upgrade on the Papa Shango character. Boogeyman debuted in 2005 and was introduced to audiences through a series of horror-inspired vignettes, which saw him reciting nursery rhymes, smashing clocks over his head and telling other superstars that he was the Boogeyman, and that he was coming to get them. More memorable than his in-ring matches were the Boogeyman's backstage and post-match antics, which generally saw him scooping up handfuls of live worms, and stuffing them into his mouth. He was also known for making worms rain from the sky and spitting them into the mouths of defeated opponents, solidifying his status as one of the most downright disgusting superstars in WWE history.
     

    ECW Zombie
     

    THE ZOMBIE
     

    Okay, so I know I used the word 'memorable' in the headline for the post, and though this next wrestler is far from memorable, I simply wouldn't feel right not giving at least a brief shout-out to pro wrestling's very first – and to my knowledge only – zombie character. After acquiring fan-favorite independent promotion ECW, WWE made a brief attempt to revive the company, and it was in 2006 that the revival began, with the new ECW show airing on the Syfy network. On the show's very first broadcast, a character simply named 'The Zombie' was introduced, and after making zombie sounds into a microphone, he was demolished by ECW superstar Sandman. The Zombie was presumably created for the sole purpose of attempting to appeal to the Syfy crowd, and since it didn't quite work, he never appeared on the program again.
     

    Leatherface Japan
     

    LEATHERFACE
     

    Though horror-inspired wrestlers here in the states don't typically make direct reference to actual big screen genre icons, things are a little bit different over in Japan, where a character by the name of Leatherface had an extended run in the W*ING promotion. Just like in the movies, Leatherface was clad in a human skin mask, wore a butcher's apron and carried around a chainsaw, and was fittingly known for competing in particularly brutal and bloody 'death matches.' Other characters in the promotion included knockoff versions of Freddy, Jason and Michael Myers, and if you're ever in the mood for a good laugh, we encourage you to look up some of their matches on YouTube!
     

    Wyatt Family
     

    THE WYATT FAMILY
     

    The WWE's most recent horror-inspired gimmick is that of The Wyatt Family, led by mouthpiece Bray Wyatt, who is always flanked by fellow family members Erick Rowan and Luke Harper. The Wyatt Family debuted just last year and was introduced through a series of particularly creepy segments, which depicted them as a backwoods clan ripped straight out of a horror movie. Bray Wyatt is a Charles Manson-like character, speaking in riddles, while Harper and Rowan are silent but brutish characters, with the latter often sporting a plastic lamb mask – looking very much like one of the killers from You're Next. The Wyatt Family comes to the ring in total darkness, lit up only by a lantern that Bray carries, and they've made a name for themselves by getting inside the heads of some of the top WWE superstars. Bray Wyatt goes toe-to-toe with John Cena, at this Sunday night's event.
     

    There are of course many others where these came from, and we encourage you to drop us a comment below and make your own additions to the list!
     

    And if you're hungry for more wrestling fun, be sure to check out our list of nine professional wrestlers who became horror movie stars!


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    It takes a lot of skill, creativity, and good humor to combine geek culture, broad humor, low-budget action scenes, and a big splash of horror mayhem -- and have your movie turn out to be a success. Doubly so when your movie has been sitting on a shelf for a year after suffering through some ugly and well-documented post-production trauma. But given the tone, the trouble, and the multi-genre-style weirdness behind the clunky but energetic Knights of Badassdom, it's pretty amazing that the final product is actually halfway entertaining.

     
    Much of the praise goes to an eclectic ensemble that seems to know how to strike the right tone between poking fun at the "Live Action Role Playing" community and just being mean-spirited. Ryan Kwanten is an affable wannabe rock star who (against his will) joins his pals Eric (Steve Zahn) and Hung (Peter Dinklage) for a long weekend of huge crowds and LARPing lunacy out in the forest. Unfortunately it seems that "level 27 wizard" Eric has accidentally conjured a demonic succubus who (eventually) starts hacking up all the knights and squires and bards. Oh my. Not to mention there's a gang of roving paintballers who hate those gosh darned Dungeons & Dragons freaks.
     
    The "likable nerds who mistakenly conjure a monster" premise is, of course, nothing new, but there's a bit of novelty in seeing it used in LARP culture and, again, the cast does a thoroughly impressive job of making the good gags shine -- and also of making the weaker gags work to one degree or another. In addition to the adorable Zahn / Dinklage combo, Badassdom also offers some simple but consistently amusing contributions from actors like Jimmi Simpson, Summer Glau, Danny Pudi, Josh Molina, and the always awesome Brian Posehn.
     
    It's in the editorial arena that you'd most likely notice the seams that exist because of extreme and probably excessive post-production tinkering -- which basically means that a simple, silly movie starts to feel sort of confused, plodding, and aimless on more than one occasion. Knights of Badassdom is at its best when the actors are simply rambling silly LARP vernacular and riffing off one another in sly and sarcastic fashion. (Simpson, in particular, saves more than one scene all by himself.) Aside from a crazy finale that involves a legitimately impressive-looking troll monster, the flick works considerably better as a "straight" comedy than as any sort of true "horror" comedy. In a movie like this we generally want more horror and less dialogue, but hey, sometimes things just go the other way. Also I happen to think Steve Zahn is very funny, no matter what words he happens to be saying.
     
    Although reportedly dismissed from the film in post-production, screenwriter / producers Matt Wall & Kevin Dreyfuss and director Joe Lynch should not consider Knights of Badassdom a black hole on their respective resumés. It's a clunky, scattershot, and periodically very messy piece of indie filmmaking, but the flick also has a lot of quick wit, a cast that clearly seems to like the material, and a handful of geek-friendly themes and sequences that managed to survive the post-production nightmares and, after all is said and done, just might find some new fans down the road.

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    As horror fans, we make it our business to know the most obscure details about our favorite films. We watch the bonus features on the special edition releases of our favorite DVDs and we read retrospective interviews recalling the details of our most beloved titles. But even the most diligent fan is bound to miss something along the way. So, to help you get the lowdown, we're running a recurring segment that rounds up some lesser-known trivia from your favorite horror films. For this installment, we're setting our sights on Sam Raimi’s 1981 horror film The Evil Dead.

    Feast your eyes on: Ten things you may not have known about The Evil Dead.

    The film is based on a Sam Raimi short called "Within the Woods"

    The 30-minute short film was made in 1978 for $1600. The purpose of the short was to attract potential investors for an eventual feature. Like The Evil Dead, "Within the Woods" focuses on demonic forces that originate in the woods and possess the film’s characters. 

    Ellyn Sandweiss is a high school friend of Sam Raimi and Bruce Campbell

    She starred in several of Sam Raimi’s short films, including Within the Woods, before going on to star in The Evil Dead.

    The Evil Dead was originally called Book of the Dead

    When the film was first screening in the early ‘80s, it showed under the title Book of the Dead. It wasn’t until the film was in negotiation for distribution that the title was changed to The Evil Dead.

    Stephen King was instrumental in helping the film to get noticed and secure distribution

    King saw the film at Cannes, loved it, and provided quotes for marketing and distribution purposes. His approval helped pave the way for the film’s success.  

    The opening scene was shot at least four different times

    The opening scene that made it in to the film was the last scene that Sam Raimi shot. He felt that all of the previous versions were not dramatic enough.

    There was no cellar in the cabin where The Evil Dead was filmed

    The production crew cut a hole in the floor, installed a trap door, and then dug a six-foot deep hole beneath the newly installed door. In that hole, the crew added several steps to make it look as if the door went to a basement. Most of the shots that take place in the cellar were done at Rob Tapert’s parents’ farm in Michigan.

    Night of the Living Dead was a huge influence on The Evil Dead

    George Romero’s use of a single cabin location, a 16MM camera, and a micro budget all influenced Sam Raimi and Rob Tapert in their creation of The Evil Dead.

    Safety was not a primary concern on the set

    The production didn’t use tempered glass, blanks, or many other safety precautions. If script called for a broken window or the use of a shotgun, the crew would break real glass or fire off live rounds.

    The ‘rape vines’ sequence was shot in multiple cuts, at several locations, and over such a long period of time that it lessened the impact of the segment for Sam Raimi and Rob Tapert

    After the scene was edited together, the duo realized that it was more disturbing than they had initially expected it to be but found that it was effective, nonetheless. Tapert says that the scene was loosely inspired by the sequence in “Macbeth” where the woods come to life.

    Betsy Baker had to stick her head in a bowl of onions to produce tears

    On the film’s commentary track, Tapert and Raimi explain that onions were cheaper to purchase than a bottle of Visine, so they opted for onions.

    For more in our "Things You Might Not Know" series, check out:

    12 Things You Might Not Know About Scream

    10 Things You Might Not Know About Trick 'r Treat

    10 Things You Might Not Know About Rosemary's Baby

    12 Things You Might Not Know About A Nightmare on Elm Street

    12 Things You Might Not Know About Black Christmas

    10 Things You Might Not Know About Halloween

     


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    Last week we brought you exclusive stills from writer and director Brandon Slagle’s feature film House of Manson, and today we've got a first look at the flick's trailer.


    Produced by Britt Griffith (co-star of Syfy's Ghosthunters), the crime thriller/biopic stars Devanny Pinn (Dead Sea) as Susan Atkins, Ryan Kiser (Truth or Dare) as Charles Manson, Reid Warner (Oren Peli's Area 51) as Tex Watson, Chriss Anglin (Call of Duty: Black Ops) as Ronald Hughes, Serena Lorien as Patricia Krenwinkel, Erin Marie Hogan (Paranormal Entity) as Linda Kasabian, and Suzi Lorraine (Music and Lyrics) as Sharon Tate.

    House of Manson chronicles Charles Manson's life from his childhood, up until his arrest following the raid on Barker Ranch months after the infamous Tate/LaBianca murders that sent a shockwave not just through Los Angeles, but through the entire world.
    Currently in post-production, release is slated for later this year (details forthcoming). 
    For more on House of Manson, check out the official Facebook page.


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    The common one-celled organism known as Methanosarcina seems harmless at first glance (although on closer observation, it does look kinda creepy), but experts have found new evidence suggesting microbes like these may have triggered the largest mass extinction of life on Earth – a global catastrophe so massive that scientists have nicknamed it “The Great Dying.”
     
    methanosarcina
     
    According to I Fucking Love Science, MIT Professor Daniel Rothman and his team of researchers have theorized that methane production from Methanosarcina could have led to drastic shifts in global temperatures which eventually killed off 90% of all species on the planet– an event 250 million years ago known as the Permian-Triassic Extinction – and it could have taken life up to 10 million years to recover.
     
    These microbes, which can be found all over the planet today (including in your intestines), are so efficient in producing methane gas that a certain set of geological events could have caused microbe populations to bloom and blanket the planet with the gas, raising temperatures high enough to effectively “break” the climate balance. In a sense, they may have literally farted the planet to death.
     
    Visit I Fucking Love Science for a full breakdown of the team's findings... and while we're on the subject of micro-monsters, be sure to check out this real-life microscopic spawn of Cthulhu!

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    "If they have to call Joe Ledger - it's already hit the fan."
     
    I love that line from the back cover of Joe Ledger: Special Ops, the new book of short stories from Jonathan Maberry. If you've never read a Joe Ledger book (there are six in the series, with more on the way), that line does a good job of telling you what to expect. Ledger leads Echo Team, an elite anti-terrorism squad that only rolls out for the most dangerous of missions. Why am I writing about him on FEARNET? Because Maberry throws Ledger and his crew at threats composed of off-kilter science, mutations, tampered genetics, shape-shifters, zombies... you know, real mad scientist stuff.
     
    Joe_LedgerIf you haven't read any of the novels, this is a great way to get a taste and see if it's your kind of thing. These stories (seven reprints and two brand-new tales) weave in and out of the series, and there are spoilers for several of the books along the way, but there are notes at the top of each story that warn you when you're entering spoiler territory. There's also a handy guide at the back that lays out the entire series of novels and short stories in chronological order. That being said, all of these stories work just fine on their own.
     
    "Countdown" serves as a prequel to the entire series, introducing Ledger to the kind of exotic threats he'll soon be facing on a regular basis while immediately establishing the character's gritty, no-nonsense attitude. 
     
    "Material Witness" takes Ledger and his team to Pine Deep, the setting of Maberry's terrific horror trilogy (Ghost Road Blues, Dead Man's Song and Bad Moon Rising), where they're on the hunt for a thriller writer whose realistic ideas for mass destruction are attracting the wrong kind of fans. It's a great showcase for Maberry, who shows how strong he's become at writing action while reminding us that he's no slouch when it comes to creeping readers out. 
     
    Another standout is "Changeling," which takes us down into a nightmarish underground lab where experiments in human transformation have gone horribly wrong. This one centers on some huge spoilers for the series as a whole, but it's a perfect example of how richly Maberry has developed the world and its characters thus far.
     
    That characterization is an important part of what makes this collection, and the series as a whole, work so well. It would be easy to make the Joe Ledger series all about the plot, but Maberry is not content to stop there. All of his characters feel real, but Ledger in particular is a triumph. He's a man who operates according to a high code of honor, who does not hesitate to kill but doesn't kill lightly; he understands the gravity of taking another person's life, just as he understands the consequences of failing to do so. He's our anchor, our window into his world, and it's important that we relate to, and empathize with, him and the decisions he has to make. Under Maberry's guidance, we do — and then some.
     
    My only complaint about Joe Ledger: Special Ops is a minor one about the cover. I really wish JournalStone had gone for something more like the edgy, distinct design St. Martin's Griffin uses on the Ledger paperbacks instead of the generic photo cover they went with. But, truly, the only important thing is what comes after the cover, and in this case there's absolutely nothing to complain about.
     
    Joe Ledger: Special Ops by Jonathan Maberry will be released April 25 from JournalStone Publishing.

    Blu Gilliand is a freelance writer of fiction and nonfiction. He covers horror fiction at his blog, October Country, and contributes interviews to the Horror World website. Follow him on Twitter at @BluGilliand

     


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    In this exclusive clip from the Nurse blu-ray, star Katrina Bowden and costume designer Zaldy discuss the process of coming up with the sexy-but-not-too-sexy costumes.

    Official synopsis: By day, nurse Abby Russell lovingly attends to the patients at All Saints Memorial Hospital; by night, Abby prowls nightclubs, luring unfaithful men into dangerous liaisons. After Danni, a young, sensitive nurse, joins the hospital staff, Abby pursues her friendship. But when the friendship turns to obsession, Danni spurns Abby, unleashing Abby’s fury and a rampage of terror.

    Nurse releases on blu-ray and DVD April 8th.


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    People living near a senior citizens' community in Port St. Lucie, Florida got the shock of their lives when they saw one of the residents sitting at the water's edge feeding her new friend... which happened to be a dangerous wild alligator.
     
    Alligator1
     
    According to WPTV West Palm Beach, the unnamed woman was seen repeatedly feeding the gator by hand, offering it snacks like breakfast cereal. She even talked to it, calling to it like a dog and even scolding it when it got too aggressive.
     
    “She would bring food back and forth and feed him and he would hang out there all day with her," said the woman's neighbor, Lynette Miller. “She nicknamed the gator Puppy Puppy. She would yell at him and he would come.”
     
     
    The incident occurred nearly a year ago, and the woman has since moved out of the community. The gator remained for a while longer, but was finally removed by wildlife officials after it began approaching other people looking for more handouts.
     
    "Nobody called the authorities until it came up to a patio and tried to take a steak," Miller said.
     
    While this story didn't end in tragedy (except maybe for the gator, who presumably never got that steak), getting snuggly with dangerous reptiles is probably not a good plan. You could ask the guy who tried to make out with a snapping turtle... except he can't answer you right now.

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