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November 6th, 2018

Black Wings Of Cthulhu 6: Twenty-One New Tales Of Lovecraftian Horror edited by S.T. Joshi, Part 1

Pothunters
By Ann K. Schwader. This Cassie story sees her face an indecent amount of peril in this archaeological horror story. This is an okay tale of endless dire warnings and thwarted hope and impassioned responses and immediate and serious consequences.

The Girl In The Attic
This tale of time and cosmic horror makes no horrible kind of sense.

Best Line:
“The Gods We Await.”

The Once And Future Waite
A sequel to Lovecraft’s ‘The Thing On The Doorstep’. This is a goodish chilling explanation of what happened after the terrible events in that story.

Oude Goden
An odd tale of a witch.

Best Line:
“Seeing that thing in solid form is something you’ll never unsee.”

Carnivorous
Taking a job agreeing to care for an old woman’s plants was a bad idea.

On A Dreamland’s Moon
A terrible poem.

Teschitigo Creek
A couple go on a make or break holiday. It breaks them. This was okay.

Ex Libris
By Caitlin R Kiernan. This is a disjointed narrative that is yet another sequel to a Lovecraft story. It’s okay but Kiernan is too obviously relishing the transgression.

Trailers, Quotes and Stuff

'Supergirl' 4x05 promo
Looks stupid.

'Arrow' 7x05 promo
Hell no.

There is to be another ‘Time Machine’ remake?

‘The Watch’ show is a go?

Who saw ‘Kindergarten Cop’ (1990) or ‘The Red Shoes’ (1948) or ‘Bean’ (1997) or ‘Straight From The Heart’ (2003)?

Ben Daniels on ‘The Exorcist’ played Adam on ‘House Of Cards’!

Who has a cheese knife?

Anyone tried beer can chicken?

What is Louisiana hot sauce or kraut spice?

I like pickled ginger.

I want agate coasters and an octopus bottle opener and a leather minidress.

What is an eco homestead?

Who read ‘A Dance To The Music Of Time’?

I’d try a mojito éclair and mulled apple & pear cobbler pie and bebe cake. I’d also try grilled sweetcorn with Red Leicester Tabasco mayo and chilli salt. I’d try a breakfast tart, gluten free breaded mozzarella sticks, gluten free paradise pesto pizza and gluten free beer battered onion rings. I want to try chocolate popcorn, sweet and salty gently spiced almonds and parmesan and thyme popcorn and shredded potatoes. I’d try Irish beer cheddar soup.

What is rhododendron honey?

Double bagging is a thing?

There are Hot cocoa flavoured M&Ms?

What is an eyelash lift?

‘Matinee’ Quote:
“The Brain Leeches.”

‘The Sunday Times’ Quotes:
“Dominant youth preoccupation.”

“She has few real friends anyway.”

“Gold-digging for a non-existent fortune.”

“So horrified by an interviewee that he leapt across the table.”

“Whose fates were never acknowledged.”

“Holding unfashionable opinions.”

“He doesn’t know how doors work.”

“Towel etiquette was the unlikely hot topic.”

“Shunned by the community.”

“Speciesism,”

“Mass open rescue.”

“Women mourn, men replace.”

“Perceive bereavement as a vacancy.”

“Cautious respect.”

“Collected only once in a goat’s lifetime.”

“Learning essential skills like how to ride side-saddle on an Italian boy’s Vespa in a miniskirt.”

“The sluttiest shoes I owned.”

“Generally felt very louche and bohemian.”

“Overtime clause.”

“Disappearing then resurfacing in a foreign country with a new name 10 years later is okay.”

‘The Irish Times’ Quotes:
“Too-often unwelcoming.”

“Refusal to take responsibility for negative consequences and an aversion to oversight and rules.”

“Once-mighty empires and civilisations that crumbled into the dust.”

“Resource exhaustion.”

“Functionally dead.”

“Defend them on TV.”

“Weaponises negative stories.”

‘Dr Phil’ Quotes:
“What you call facts.”

“Don’t like where I am in life.”

“Came out with nothing.”

“3 screaming women in his life.”

“The prostitute and the drunkard.”

‘Justin Theroux’s Altered States’ Quotes:
“What’s goes on in there?”
“That’s the chicken coop.”

Chapter 70
There are more hilariously trite flashbacks in this frequently awful cheerless season. This show long ago stopped being an absolute delight. Nothing is being wrapped up. Was Claire ever flattered by FU’s attentions? This was mediocrity and full of hubristic lunacy. Bill, one of the evil siblings, is so terribly earnest in his woeful inadequacy. This is monumentally boring. Claire pardoned Doug.

Claire has devastating problems. Or does she? She’s unlikely to be met with sympathy. Nobody acts in a calm and reflective manner. People are smug and irritating rank humanity. There is self-inflicted conflict in this appalling ep. This is not splendidly cynical. Claire regrets marrying FU. This was not deeply ominous. Claire acts completely incapable of taking responsibility but it is just wiles.

This was unappealing. People have endless malice and devious belligerent triumph and grievance one-upmanship. Claire is the personification of smuggery. This is uniformly wretched and full of unpleasant moments. People are difficult to like. Conway is mentioned. People chew the scenery by the fistful. People want to invoke the 25th Amendment. Rumour turns to concern. Doug’s pathetic dependency on the Underwood clan marks him as obviously unhinged.

People are professionally disdainful and muttering judgementally. There is no terrible resonance. Claire is widely disliked. Claire plans to inevitably retaliate. There is no couch-edge intrigue. There is no strongly positive response. This is not heart-tugging. Tom harasses some dirty man. The irritating Duncan lurks. This has no galvanic impact. Nobody is a vibrant presence and nobody has real antipathy.

Jane annoys and is in Saudi Arabia. Claire spins a lie about Tom Yates and Mark. Claire fires her cabinet and Mark is thrown under the bus. Cathy ran off. Claire has an all female cabinet.

Best Lines:
“The worst thing that has ever happened to this country.”

“I’m closing the door on you.”

“Manage me my whole life.”

“Who’s they?”
“Who isn’t?”

“Dead man’s words are worthless.”

“Dressed down acting like they belong.”

“SETH IS SMARTER THAN YOU!”

Chapter 71
Tom lurks. Where’s Gillian? Mark’s under pressure. Claire is filled with certainty. This was not credible ore enjoyably empty just matchless vapidity. I don’t care about the implacably righteous siblings. Nobody is a dignified presence. People throw strops. This has little appeal. Jane’s back in the US. Nobody cares about Duncan. This was not replete with joy.

One is markedly less enthusiastic for this season. Claire’s gone back to her maiden name. Jane and Claire are bitterly estranged. Seth and Doug are smug male toxicity. This season is unendurable. Seth is vociferously awful. There is no moral strength. There is ideological fervour and denunciations and a sense of certainty. Where is Tusk? The miserable looking FBI agent lurks. Doug stole Tom’s dog! What is Bill dying of?

There is moral degeneration and terrible behaviour and no idealism. The siblings cause a situation. Tom rages. There is no calm reflection or reassurances. Seth has no shame. Bill is an ass. Duncan learns where he came from. Claire mocks Doug’s slavish devotion to FU. Tom gets his dog back and then gets shot in the head. He’s dead, Cathy’s dead and Jane’s dead. Doug stares at a folder and Claire reveals she and FU had a pre-nup. She also reveals she is knocked up. HOW? WHY?

Best Lines:
“Do you miss them?”
“Her. Not him.”

“Like to see others fail.”

“Where’s Duncan?”
“Not here.”

“The optics are awful.”

“The only place I feel safe.”

“Nothing but loyal to you.”

“Well liked around town.”

“I’m tired of the disposable girl story.”

“A mess in all the ways these stories do.”

“Prisoner of his past until the day he died.”

“Not a just world Tom.”

“Foreknowledge of hazard.”

“You don’t belong here.”

~
The Andromeda Strain (2007)
This remake miniseries totally changes the Michael Crichton novel. It stars Benjamin Bratt, Daniel Dae Kim, Viola Davis of ‘Traveler’, Justin Louis of ‘Stargate Universe’ and ‘Prom Night II: Hello Mary Lou’, Ricky Schroder and Andre Braugher of ‘Last Resort’. A satellite crashes and people die of a mysterious disease. Only a man, a baby and a dog survive. People talk about the Wildfire Protocol. A doctor (Bratt) has a crazy bitch wife and a yob thug son.

There is no deep unease. This was absolutely irrelevant and a reporter into wanton self-promotion runs around. People talk about bio-defence. What is Project Scope? People talk about Iraq and poison birds. This was not effective. The dog is left behind when the 2 human survivors are taken to a lab. There is slo-mo, do nothing characters, a devastating incident, the reporter has a reckless attitude and morality, ethics and decency should be central to behaviour and existence. But aren't.

I expected not a lot. There is grave concern and this is not ingenious. The reporter, Nash, is needlessly sanctimonious and it clouds his reputation. Bad acting hinders interest. The satellite was designed to ensnare bio-samples in space. Nash is relentlessly aggressive and has a gladiatorial approach to conversation and is wilfully deaf to sense. Nash (Erik McCormack) is immediately unpleasant and does virulent condemnation of The Man. Is the disease absolutely deliberate? Characters are narcissistic sociopaths. There are moral arguments, talk of nanotechnology and it is critical to the planet that a cure is found. The ignored dog is sick and animal life bothers it when it is dead.

Lives pivot on fleeting moments. A bad CGI snake slithers. There are destructive life patterns and a wormhole and talk of aliens. This was glib with bad acting, weirdness and a plane crashes. There are no definitive conclusions. More birds die. There are flamethrowers and Nash rants. There is no rational causality just nefarious designs. There is sulphur based life and this was not fraught. People talk about stomach acid and time travel in this banal twaddle.

None of this makes any sense. There is a mysterious unexplained symbol. WTF is going on? The POTUS doesn’t listen. There is talk of vent mining. Was this a pilot for a TV show? What is the symbol? What is the final scene about? Seriously WTF?

Best Lines:
“Go where no man has gone before.”

“Astrobiology.”

“We call that gravity.”

“Doesn’t have DNA.”

“This is alien.”

“An alien life form.”

“Creation of any kind of terrestrial power.”

“Tinpot fascist.”

“Everything ides. What kills you?”

“You saying it thinks?”

“He also tried to kill me. Twice.”

“Nuke Utah.”

~
Mind War
Sinclair discusses a megacorp. Talia gets a gift, that didn’t stop Sheridan having her personality-murdered. Felicity Waterman and Walter Koening guest star as angry looking Psi Cops. There is exposition and who knew Koenig could actually act?  The social impact of telepaths was detailed more in the Psi Corps novels. The VFX looks like 90s clip art.

The female Psi Cop wears a long skirt. Koenig wears an obvious hair piece. Jason Ironheart shows up showing off powers. There is bad acting and Sigma 957 is mentioned. There is foreshadowing and talk about telekinetic abilities. Catherine encounters something at Sigma 957. Sinclair punches Bester in the face. Ironheart disintegrates Bester’s female sidekick and people shrug off Ironheart murdering her. Talia gets the gift of TK which came to nothing. Bester becomes Garibaldi’s sitcom arch-nemesis. This was okay and a famous line of Shirley Jackson is plagiarised.

Best Lines:
“Alive if possible. Dead if necessary.”

“Strange things happen there.”

“That’s a lie.”
“Yes. It is.”

“Beam weapons.”

“Mind quake.”

“A personal message from God complete with stone tablets.”

“All the moral fibre of Jack The Ripper.”

“They walk near Sigma 957. They must walk there alone.”

~
The Apple
The crew walk around a paradise planet and someone dies. Spock is injured and the transporters don’t work. People die. Kirk gets in a fist fight with a caveman who speaks English. People talk about Vaal. McCoy urges that the Prime Directive be violated, they’ve done that already. The cavemen worship a papier-mâché snake head. David Soul guest stars. This sucked.

Best Line:
“What do you want? Violence?”

~
Supergirl 4x03

Man Of Steel
This is the origin story of the season’s big bad Ben. Alex and her overreach has no forethought or caution and she had caused unintended consequences. Lena was smug and Mercy recruited Ben. This was okay if not an enrichment. The DEO’s unwavering support for aliens caused people deep seated trauma and turned Ben into the big bad.

He was a college professor and family man and aliens ruined his life. Supergirl is dying because Otis and Mercy poisoned the atmosphere with kryptonite. Ben had many furious confrontations with aliens who stabbed him, ruined his father’s factory, cost him his job and burnt down his house. Smug liberal elites like Lena and Jimmy wouldn’t listen to or help him.

There is no sense of anticipation. The big bad was born out of sublimated frustration and was personally affected by the idiot actions of the main characters. People are right to be deeply wary of aliens who keep invading, attacking and ruining people’s lives. Ben was falsely accused by Alex who didn’t listen to him. Ben’s dad lost his factory. People foresee the dangers of aliens. People are not valued.

Supergirl and co are out of touch with reality. Alex is a smug fascist. J’onn burnt down Ben’s house. Aliens caused the death of Ben’s father (Xander Berkeley). Ben did something out of outrage and his ultimate response was to go bad. He was fired. But he ended up recruiting the smug boss who fired him. Ben became a crazy ranter and is now a big bad. The actor who plays Ben was Doomsday on ‘Smallville’.

Best Line:
“Stupid name.”

~
Blood 1x04&1x05
Cat is manipulated by her father and accused of dividing the family. Cat’s friend rants madly. This was bad with a death and consequences. Cat causes strife and casts blame and is neurotic and grumpy. Cat is not free from the gaze of judgement. Cat’s father seems to run the town and ruin lives at whim. How did a woman with MND take a photo? Cat finally gets an apology from being lied to and gaslit. Her father admits killing her mother. These 2 eps bored.

Best Lines:
“Only so much I can forgive.”

“Men like that leave notes.”
The Huntsman: Winter’s War (2016)
This is a prequel/sequel featuring Emily Blunt as a never before mentioned sister of the evil queen. Chris Hemsworth and Charlize Theron co-star and Liam Neeson does a voiceover to fill in the plot holes. There are bad accents, retcons and no wonder this flopped. Freya the snow queen knockoff is oblivious to sense. The Huntsman is all fratboy boorishness. Freya has no steely élan and this is a nuisance.

There is community strife and no reasonable prospect of joy. There is no Snow White just sap. The trailer gave away everything. ‘Game Of Thrones’ iconography is ripped off. Nick Frost, Sam Clafian and Jessica Chastain co-star. Snow White and the Huntsman did not knock boots; she seems to have picked the other guy.

Best Lines:
“Fear her very name.”

“You’ve won.”
“Have I?”

~
The Inherited aka Stranger In The House (2015)
Nathan Darrow of ‘House Of Cards’ and ‘Gotham’ stars alongside Dennis Boutsikaris of ‘Quantico’ and Annabella Sciorra in this inept TV movie. A couple move into the house that the husband Tom (Darrow) inherited from his dead cougar 1st wife. Lines are not delivered with passion. The new wife does not fully and completely understand Tom. There are terse conversations and Tom still has his 1st wife’s wedding china. There are hints of her husband’s dubious past.

Tom’s creepy former sister in law lurks. There is paranoia, poison, murder, a bizarre will, a bizarre ending and a blatantly obvious plot twist. The idiot heroine does pitiful pleading and there are heated emotional entanglements. This was grimly stupid and causes mass discontent.

Best Lines:
“You hate anything invented after 1940.”

“Oh, how grim.”

~
Final Girl (2015)
Abigail Breslin and Wes Bentley and Alexander Ludwig star in this. A girl is trained to hunt and kill serial killers by a creepy mentor. 4 boys hunt and kill women. But they’ve met their doom in Veronica. This was goodish.

Best Line:
"That's a really big rock."

"He's hunting."
"In a tuxedo?"

"You're an interesting girl."

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