HELLO BEAUTIFUL

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Model: The fabulous (and sultry) Honey via Restrained Elegance

 

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Happy All Souls, AKA Saturday November 2; HEXES Final Issue Update; Recent Films + Books + More…

spirit-2304469_1920-e1520661783949Photo: Haunted Museum of Nature

Intro!

HELLO, hello! May we please go vertigo? We will accept your silence as an implicit yes so here we go, shuffling through the wrinkled Snickers and Twix wrappers and uneaten candy corn of Halloween, another Samhain come and gone, sad but true but oh babies, don’t you panic! By the light of the night it’ll all be all right, we’ll get you a satanic mechanic…

Entry! HEXES The Final Issue, aka The Final Hex is shaping up to be the thing of things, an issue compiled entirely of original material solicited exclusively for this issue. You might want to re-read that sentence, because it’s quite the break from normal operations in HEXES land. Ya see, the modus operandi usually went like this: The Creep in the Art Department would find an image so compelling he just HAD to turn it into a magazine (or webzine, if we’re splitting atoms) cover, and then it was over to the editor (moi) to scour that week’s internet offerings for an engaging TOC and links, featuring clips of text and very pretty pics, and that was that. There were exceptions, of course, most notably in the “themed” issues, such as THE VAMPIRE SPECIAL and HELL AT LAST and DEATH BY SOUND. But even so, any given issue of HEXES was compiled entirely of preexisting material.

Not so for The Final Hex. The final issue will consist entirely of original pictures and words commissioned specifically for the bid bad swan song. Big artists, Big writers.  Behold, The Creep’s call for cover models…

HEXES Model flyer

Of course it’s internationally recognized! We have readers in the UK, Europe, Asia, Russia. Just sayin’.

At any rate, The Final Hex will be the Bees’ Knees, the Show of Shows. But we already know of at least one feature that won’t be included…

Entry! SABBATH by Nick Mamatas…

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…will be published by Tor later this month. I had originally planned on reviewing said tome in The Final Hex. However, once I began approaching certain artists and writers for the above mentioned original material, I realized they needed a doable deadline (which is December 31st, curious scribblers). SABBATH pubs in a few weeks, so my review will coincide with the release. Perhaps Nick will agree to an excerpt for inclusion in the Swan Song. Who knows? In the meantime, stay glued to these pages…

EH_pevCWwAIhWSvSpecial thanks to Tor for the ARC

Entries! Current (and currently favorite) Book: MOON by Oliver Morton. It’s a masterpiece, and Morton is nothing less than a poet.

“Oliver Morton explores how the ways we have looked at the Moon have shaped our perceptions of the Earth: from the controversies of early astronomers such as van Eyck and Galileo, to the Cold War space race, to the potential use of the Moon as a stepping stone for further space exploration.” And so much more. This book belongs on every Lunaphile’s shelf.

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Followed by the very best heroic action film we’ve seen in way too many Moons, ALITA, Battle Angel! 

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This movie kicks ass, man, putting all the Marvel shit to shame… Wait, what? What’s that you say? Ah. The answer is Nnnno. I am in no way prejudiced or predisposed to sing Alita’s praises. Yes, I loved the original manga and 90’s era anime, but if anything that love would make me even more critical. Example: I liked this “live-action” version of Alita far more than I liked the 2010 live-action version of Space Battleship Yamato. There are solid reasons for Alita’s potency, as it was directed by Robert Rodriguez with a screenplay by James Cameron, who also served as producer with Jon Landau… um, these guys know what the fuck they’re doing. They deliver the goods.

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And finally

Entry! For all the limp scarecrows.

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HELLO BEAUTIFUL

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A No-Prize will be awarded to the clever being who can ID the manga.

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HELLO (and goodbye) BEAUTIFUL

Friday the 13th, yes.

Full Harvest Moon, yes.

September 13, 2019… 20 years to the day, baby.

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“I Am The Chosen One.”

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Then let’s do it, motherfucker.

Image via theredshtick.com

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HELLO, BEAUTIFUL

Virgin Sacrifice

Ariel Anderssen VS The Moon

@ArielAnderssen

@RElegance

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VideoScope #111! and Libby Cudmore’s THE BIG REWIND!

VS#111

#111! Unbelievable. It seems like only last Friday that The Phantom and the VS crew hit historic #100! VS is so much more to me than a cool mag I used to write for; it is nothing less than a staple of my life, eternal as the tide. Sure, I miss the days of visiting The Phantom and Managing Editor Ms Nag in fog-cloaked Ocean Grove on the Jersey shore, where multiple cats ruled the sidewalks, a sleepy town right down the street from Asbury Park and its formidable ghosts: the music, the Stone Pony; the broken boardwalk often seen on The Sopranos; a place where I made multiple pitches to The Phantom which included my short-lived column 21st Century Goth! and reviews of shit not easily available in North America. The Phantom let it roll, man—most of it, anyway. He hooked me up with interviewing Dario Argento, for fucks sake; he facilitated my sit-downs with the entire PHANTASM brigade (Don Coscarelli, Angus Scrimm, Reggie Bannister, Michael Baldwin, Bill Thornbury); and so much more, all of which I am forever grateful.

So here’s to VideoScope #111! We’re looking forward to #150.

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Libby Cudmore’s THE BIG REWIND

BigRewind

My Amazon review of this excellent novel:

Yearning, desire, heartache… and regret. These are the elements that drive every successful love song, and they are the forces that make THE BIG REWIND a wonderful novel. It’s a murder mystery, yes, as well as a carpet-bombing of pop-culture references—too many per paragraph, in this reviewer’s opinion—but the excellent Libby Cudmore gets a pass. This girl can write. Insightful, funny, and often poignant, THE BIG REWIND is a bulletproof concept album of a novel that will play smooth and seamless in every music lover’s literary jukebox.

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Libby holds a music party every Saturday night on twitter! Tune in @LibbyCudmore!

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Remember

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The Hiroshima Cenotaph, photo by Michael A. Stecker

 

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The Children’s Memorial, designed by Kazuo Kikuchi

 

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John Hersey’s Hiroshima

Upon publication, Albert Einstein ordered 1,000 copies.

 

 

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“Why the Long Face?” Well…

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SO, everybody and their third cousin went absolutely bonkers today with FaceApp, a Russian app that allows narcissists everywhere (yes, guilty) to play endlessly with, well, their face. One can add glasses, beards, smiles, wild hair, tats, time-warps forward and backwards, blah blah blah, and it’s all very convincing, not to mention a little scary. See above. And everyone’s worried, “What will The Russians do with OUR FACES?” See below…

 

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Call me obtuse (again, guilty), but I don’t see how this changes… anything. For nearly two decades our faces have been plastered across our beloved social media platforms: Facebook, Instagram, Tumblr, Twitter—not to mention Big Brother’s cameras at every freaking intersection and stoplight— it’s all ripe for pillaging. Jesus Christ, our CATS are easy victims for identity theft! What the fuck are the Russians going to do with my face? Proof that Rasputin lives? Maybe. If I’m lucky!

 

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It’s the ease of the deep fakery that’s frightening. The above image of 84 year-old Drax was convincingly realized with a click of a filter on my phone. With tech that’s easily available for free.

Yes, you may refer to me as Grampa. Because I am scared shitless.

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Hello, Beautiful

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Photo by Greg Martin

Of course I remember the Moon Landing. I was four. I don’t recall the specifics, not the lift-off on July 16, nor Armstrong’s first steps four days later, but I certainly remember the event as a whole. My brother was home on leave from Vietnam with his best bud, Joe, and the two of them just camped out in front of the TV for days. Of course I made a perfect nuisance of myself: “Where are your guns? Where’s your helicopter? Why can’t we go to Mission Control and watch everything on the REALLY big screens?”

They’d tell me to outside and see if I could spot the astronauts on The Moon with my naked eyes, to which I would reply, Of course I could. And 50 years later, I’m still looking.

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