im back bitches

Well, it’s been… a long time. Life has had its ups and its downs over the past year and a half I’ve been absent. But at the very least I’ve gotten a novel out of the deal and a change of scenery. From Texas to Connecticut, I’m moving up in the world. There’s gonna be some changes around this here piece of the interwebs. The least of which will be me dividing my website into my “official” author website (where I keeps me links for books and news about such specifically – basically my “writing” home) and the other will be my more “personal” blog where you can hear me bitch about bad writing days, bad food days, and days I know I should have gone to the gym but I totally didn’t and ate a bunch of cupcakes instead. You know, the average junk.

But there you go. I’m a week or so away from finishing “The Monsters Among Us” (working title), and from there it’s just editing, cover, and then it’ll be up for sale on Amazon. I’m looking forward to it. And I hope you are too.

Yours in horror,

Shanna

HPH - The Possession

Hump Day Horror – The Possession (2012)

Here we are. Another Hump Day.

source: Wikipedia

Now, when I watch movies at home, I usually try to keep a pad of paper or a Word doc open and just stream my thoughts as the film progresses. In going over my so called “notes” for this film, I decided my play-by-play stream of consciousness was coherent enough to just copy/paste here as a review. Though, a word of warning, my stream of consciousness doesn’t care about spoiling it if you haven’t seen it. Just, be aware of that.

So without further ado, let me introduce myself.

Shanna’s

Spoilerifically Hilarious In-real-time Thoughts

Or Shanna’s S.H.I.T. for short.

i like how they don’t play around with the “the box has something in it”. no wasting time here. we all know what it’s supposed to be about, etc., no need for time wasting set up. let’s get right into the mix here.

My stream-of-consciousness self doesn’t capitalize. Deal with it.

i’m not okay, however, with the character development of the whole divorce/kids and dad thing. sort of, but it just seems forced at moments. — perhaps i’m wrong though. maybe that’s what teenage girls are just like, cause i certainly wasn’t, so i don’t know..

“i think you’ll feel better if you just stop giving a shit” …. spoken like a true teenager.

Dead Like Me FTW

source: Ehmgeew on Tumblr

 Who could possibly embody this idea better than George? (From Dead Like Me, by the way.)

i love that the box opens by itself. that’s cool.

sometimes i hate the whole mirror shit — so she’s brushing her teeth, looking into a mirror, and doesn’t see the bug flying around behind her? and what’s with all the running water??

Yes, because as everyone knows, when you’re brushing your teeth you’re far too caught up in staring at yourself and making sure to do 32 cycles of up and down to notice anything happening behind you. Am I right? I know I’m right, because this is what all the movies and t.v. shows show us. Focus everyone, focus on those teeth!

Oh, and waste water like it’s 1999. Or 1899. Or 1599. Or some time period that makes the “don’t they know better than to waste water?” joke funny. But then again, she is like 10 or something years old, so I guess it’s completely normal. Or not. My kids harp on me about wasting water all the time thanks to their GREEN education in school. And they’re both younger than her. Hrm. She’s just wasteful, I guess.

definitely has some nice creepy touches… the sounds of eating suddenly seem sinister..

i like the whole child abuse aspect.

ha. new dudes a dick.

i like that dad took matters into his own hands. he don’t fuck around. very go getter. i like that.

ha. i knew mom would come bursting in, that was fairly obvious.

the movie’s an hour in, how long before mom figures it all out?

haha. cool. it could be seen on an mri. ha.

i’m assuming there’s a conversation missing somewhere, where he describes what the issue is to her mom, she dismisses it, and later becomes a believer – awkward lack of discussion. maybe unnecessary, but it’s still left out.

i like the family aspect of the ceremony. that’s cool.

they’ve unleashed a demon on a hospital. awe-some. though, seriously, i already know it’s not going to end as well as it possibly could — how neat would it be if it was a screwed up ending and the demon gets the girl’s body, and just starts slaughtering people? all cause of a yard sale…

halloween 2Oh, wait, they already did that, didn’t they?

cool. it climbed out of his mouth. that was neat.

haha. i knew it was gonna get hit by a truck.

interesting how much influence it wields even outside the box, even locked inside.

anyway, overall, i liked it. i have a special place in my heart for possession/exorcism/demons/etc. i like what they did with this one. it was AWESOME to see the jewish version of a typically catholic/christian demon possession, and it’s especially creepy the weird shit that went on behind the scenes. must do more research into the dybbuk/dybbuk box thing. apparently that shit will freak you out.

heck, and it’s even based off some “real “events, in that a “dybbuk box” was bought on ebay, and said to be haunted — strange events and unfortunate occurings happened to the box’s owners and anyone in proximity (nightmares, hair falling out, one woman had a stroke, allergic reactions, welt, hives, etc.) And it contained weird shit to boot.. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dybbuk_box

the real box and it’s stories.. http://www.dibbukbox.com/story.htm

http://web.archive.org/web/20051105000557/www.andrew.cmu.edu/user/rubyc/eBay_dibbuk.htm

Well, if you’ve read to this point it means you must have already seen it, or if you haven’t seen it, I just ruined it for you.

My sincerest apologies.

That said, it’s not a bad flick as long as your expectations aren’t too high. If you’re already a fan of the whole “possession/exorcism” genre of horror films, you pretty much know exactly what’s going to happen whether it’s about Jewish demons or Japanese revenge spirits. In that case, it’s more about what they did differently, and I think The Possession will stand out for 1) actually being a film about demonic possession that wasn’t about Christianity (which counts as unique in my book) and 2) it had a few really neat moments, was pretty well-acted, and the story wasn’t bad considering the real story it’s based on. If you haven’t checked out those links yet, please do. The real story behind the Dybbuk Box is about as interesting (if a lot shorter to read) than the film.

Perhaps it’s an even greater coincidence that I finally wrote this blog up about The Possession and The Last Exorcism 2 is due out this Friday. I watched the first ages ago, and there is indeed on my hard drive another Shanna’s S.H.I.T. for it. I plan to go see the 2nd this weekend, because I can and a solo trip to the theater in my tiny burg is less than $15 bucks – including popcorn, drink, and a candy of my choosing.

Next HPH – The Last Exorcism 1 & 2.

Mama Movie Poster

Hump Day Horror – Mama (2013)

Source:  Wikipedia

Tonight I saw Mama. It was the last time it was playing in theater in my tiny little burg, so I had to.

Man, am I glad I did. It’s a fantastic film. I jumped a few times. (And even covered my eyes once. *shh* Don’t tell anybody.) The film has an amazing atmospheric tension. Even now, sitting at home in a well-lit room in front of a humming laptop, I still haven’t been able to completely ditch the dreadful feeling that something is looking for me in the dark. And there’s not even any shadows nearby!

tumblr_mfuto5ghC41s1sys3o1_400 - black cat loki's page

Source: Black-Cat-Loki on Tumblr

Don’t even try and tell me that’s not freaky.

I really don’t want to spoil it for everyone by giving away crucial details. I will say that if you know anything about the supernatural (ghosts, demons, e.g. watched a TON of horror flicks and read a TON of horror stories) you’ll realize fairly quickly this is a little twist on the La Llorona mythos.  The story, written by  Andres Muschietti, really draws from the La Llorona mythos and expands upon it into fresh territory. Muschietti originally penned this script as a short film which Guillermo del Toro later saw and decided it deserved to be a feature film.

I agree with Guillermo wholeheartedly. Muschietti created an atmospheric, startling, and honestly, beautiful horror story. Through the entire film my heart is pumping, I’m biting my knuckles to keep from yelling at the screen (although Jessica Chastain’s Annabel actually listened to my psychic ranting and DIDN’T do… whatever.. it was.. *not spoiling*), I’m sitting in a wee bit of fear and thinking I drank WAY too much soda . . . and then the dramatic conclusion comes and . . . it’s not at all what I was expecting.

I nearly left the theater in tears.

tumblr_lnzz9d6eXd1qivsub -- stewie

Source: MoralCodeofBuzzards on Tumblr (and Family Guy)

Overall I thought the movie was great. It had all the best elements of horror, none of the shtick, and some decent creepy CGI. And the girls playing Victoria and Lily = awesome.

So I know I can’t quite suggest going and seeing it in theaters (if it’s already left mine, then I KNOW it’s already left yours), but whenever it becomes available on DVD, go pick it up.

Hump Day Horror – Movies with Mike

Pictured: Mike’s usual face

So I’ve got this pretty amazing kid. I have to start there. He’s really embraced the lifestyle, and spends as much time as I do watching horror movies (nothing too scary) or thinking about crazy weird stuff. And since I’ve been planning to see Prometheus, he has been excited to tag along.

But how can I take him to a prequel without giving him a tour of the series?

introducing the classics

Yesterday we watched Alien. It was awesome. Mostly because his reactions are freaking priceless (also in green, his favorite color):

Complete and utter ennui while the story is set up and established and Mom, where are the aliens!? Who’s gonna die?

Did that thing just grab his face? He’s dead, isn’t he? Yup, he’s gotta be dead. He’s not? Wow.

It’s gonna kill them now. They’re gonna get it on their face, yup.

And at that oh-so-pivotal moment–

O. M. Gee, that alien is awesome!

(That’s my kid. #parentalpride)

Ok, for my birthday what I want is that game Minecraft and the alien plush toy from that magazine Forget Call of Duty – just Minecraft and the plush. (ThinkGeek is a staple catalog in our home. He said “plush” a lot. It was killing me. He said it so much it sounds all weird now, alá Adventure Time. See video below. Plush. Pluuuushh.)

Back to Alien:

Lots of advice: Don’t go in there! Leave the cat! Just go!

And when the xenomorph is tossed out the airlock:

Look at him, he’s cooking. Let’s have some alien barbecue!

Pictured: Google search of “alien bbq” because

“xenomorph bbq” turned up nothing suitable.

So, Alien went over pretty well. Today, obviously, it was time for Aliens.

Are there boring parts? *sigh* Why do they need to have boring parts?

That company is evil, so evil.

I definitely want that alien plush for my birthday. Don’t forget. 

He even fetched the ThinkGeek catalog to remind me, and then asked if we could look up some more on the Internet. Found a load at this site here. He asked for one of each.

That one guy is stupid. That guy is a bad chicken.

–At the elevator scene–

The Queen’s going to get in the other elevator, isn’t she? She did, I predicted it! Those aliens are so smart!

–At the bitch-slap-wrestling-match between Ripley and the Queen–

(running back to the armchair by the tv) Front row seats for the fight!

Pictured: Front row seat(s)

post-movie Q&A

Let’s look up plushes! I don’t care about the history of aliens. Let’s look at pictures of the Queen. 

Following a big picture hunt of close-ups so he could better examine them, we discussed the other kinds of xenomorphs (Dog Alien/Runner from Alien³, PredAlien from AvP: whatever) and I had to give a quick summary of Alien³ and Alien:Resurrection.

Then he got bored and went to watch more Minecraft videos on the youtubes. It’s my fault really. I once looked up a tutorial/walk-through for a game I was playing (Dead Island) that he was watching me play (family thing) and ever since all he does is look up video game walk-throughs.

But speaking of youtube and munchkins, the other little one, Alexandra, spends all her computer time looking up My Little Pony songs, home videos girls a little older than her make with their toys, and recipes. (Seriously. She’s addicted to this one lady’s series about cupcake decorating, and keeps demanding we – her and me – make graveyard cupcakes for Halloween. *sigh* At least she’ll be a better cook than I am.)

Here’s how she watched the movie with us.

Pictured: My freckly shoulder. And a sleeping mini.

I really enjoyed watching the movies with Mike. He’s hilarious to listen to, he asks the oddest questions, and he’s willing to go fetch me a bottle of water or the remote while Alex is super-glued-dead-asleep to my side. (^_^) Look forward to more of these. Movies with Mike is definitely going to become a regular (infrequently regular?) segment. It will probably get me blogging more, since there really hasn’t been a whole lot of recent horror films released that are particularly interesting or worth watching. At least watching old flicks with Mike has some point of conversation. Maybe next time I’ll pause the movie and record particularly funny things he says for your enjoyment. Or just record the whole thing and edit it? I’ve never done that before. Food for thought.

Oh yeah, and…

Prometheus in 24 hours, 33 minutes and counting!!

Algebraic!

If you know what I mean by algebraic, you’re epic awesome. If you don’t, you probably don’t have kids or you’re a for-real-grown-up. (Note: I am not a for-real-grown-up. I’m an 8 year old trapped in a hobbit sized body that people keep insisting is an adult, but I keep telling them I don’t know what that word means! Besides the obvious requirement for giggling anytime adult is combined with something else. Adult diapers. Adult swim. Adult movies. Adult waffles. It’s all funny to me.)

Algebraic

So what’s this non-movie-review-themed blog going to be about? Well, if you haven’t caught on already…

Adventure Time

Adventure Time (with Finn and Jake) is literally one of my favorite shows of all time. Not to suggest I don’t enjoy more adult fare too. I love The Walking Dead, Arrested Development, Alcatraz, Family Guy, Futurama, Johnny Test, Grimm, Once Upon A Time, and too many others to list because it exposes just how much time I waste sitting on my rear watching television. <sigh> But I can watch AT all the time and never really get bored, which says a lot for a kid’s show averaging 12 minutes per episode, with but 3 seasons in the can (so far).

I guess I’m a little over-excited since new episodes are hitting the adult-tube on April 2nd. I can’t wait!

But why bring this show up in the first place, you’re probably thinking as you scratch your head. Well, I think a lot can be learned from this show. It shouldn’t get overlooked just because it’s on Cartoon Network.

First, the show takes place in the Land of Ooo. Through reveals during certain episodes and the opening shots, the viewer realizes Ooo is actually planet Earth following some horrible, terrible catastrophic event. Remnants of war, bombs and planes and such, hang around like half-buried memorials to the world that used to be. Throwing logic right out the window, magic has become very real, the Candy Kingdom is filled with living, breathing, talking candy people, and Finn is the “last” human left.

Aside from its wildly apocalyptic setting, the show tackles some really serious plot lines. Zombies (twice), murderers, soul snatchers, of course Finn’s semi-lonely existence as the sole human anyone knows, vampires, whywolves, dungeons, beasts, best friends, kidnappers. One of my favorite moments finds Finn and Jake talking with talking Princess Bubblegum, in which they reveal Finn is the “last” human around and was found abandoned in the forest. Princess Bubblegum asks if Finn has any interesting stories about his human relatives, and he replies: “I’ve never met any other humans. When I think about it I get all soul searchy and weird.”

Finn gets soul searchy and weird

I freaking LOVE that stuff. There’s these little interjections of awesomeness between the fart and prank jokes that gets overlooked because it’s a show for children. The show tackles moral questions through the eyes of a heroic, violent boy on the cusp of teenagedom (he’s 13), and asks “Why not?”

Maybe I enjoy the show so much because in some ways, I really am still a child. For example: When you see a house with a  turquoise/blue lawn, you know that pesticide was recently put down, right? Well, I thought it was paint and I didn’t learn it wasn’t until my husband told me so. One day I had remarked how silly it was that people painted their lawns in summer since the grass dies – especially since they painted it an unnatural color like blue – and he actually doubled over with laughter and told me through his tears that it was pesticide, not paint. I was 22 at the time. Just so you know. Go ahead and get your laughs in. I’ll wait and doodle.

my drawings

From left to right: Jake, Ice King, Finn. Also my not-so-hot drawing skills are so math, right?

But really, the biggest lesson I take away from Adventure Time is to have fun, be yourself, be silly, be whatever you feel like being. (Insert create wherever it fits.) I realized recently I’ve been so wrapped up in writing something good — something that matters – I haven’t been creating and there is a difference between the two.

So thanks, Penn Ward and the Adventure Time cast and crew, for reminding me to enjoy what I do, even if I get a little silly (or plain crazy) at times.