Tagged: dracula

Martha Thomases: Funny, You Don’t Look Booish


It’s Halloween today, when we laugh at death and taunt ghosts, witches and demons. Traditionally, we dress up in costume as something that scares us, exorcising our fears through make-up and disguise. If this was still a barometer of what we are afraid of, most women (and girls) are terrified of sex. And of nurses, police officers. And of sexy nurses and sexy police officers.

Which brings us to comics. Of course.

There have been a lot of scary comic books over the decades. Some were so scary that Congress felt the need to step in. Some scared me and didn’t scare you, and some scared you and didn’t scare me. That’s why there is room in the comments.

Alan Moore has written the most comics that scared me the most. From all the bugs to vampires that figure out how to be out in the daytime (stay underwater where the sun can’t reach you) to menopausal werewolves in his Swamp Thing, to super-powered conspiracies in Watchmen and assorted creepy Lovecraftian monsters in various one-offs, Moore’s work regularly freaks me out.

Most of us don’t believe in Lovecraftian monsters, werewolves, vampires or other tropes of the horror genre. I’m not even really afraid of bugs or conspiracies – although please keep both out of my kitchen and bathrooms and, actually, my entire apartment, thanks.

Most literary critics consider that classic monsters of horror to be metaphors for the things that are really able to hurt us. Frankenstein is about men who want to create life without a womb. Dracula is about the dangers of desire. Zombies reflect our fear of infectious diseases.

You know what’s scary right now? Sugar and the people who sell it.

And fundamentalists.

And Ebola.

These are things that can’t be fixed with a stake through the heart or a healing crystal. These are things that can still kill you when the masks are off, and the candy is all gone.

They are also not things that will inspire a single noble hero, or a small group on a quest. Instead, to fight them we will need an educated and engaged citizenry acting together to do the right thing. It means putting down the remote. It means getting off the couch.

That’s the thought that scares me the most. Not the ghouls on the street tonight, but the ones elected next Tuesday.


Box Office Democracy: “Dracula Untold”

I can’t believe Dracula Untold got made. It’s an amazing jumble of nonsensical film parts that I can only believe the pitch meeting between screenwriters Matt Sazama and Burk Sharpless and the development executive at Universal went something like this:

Matt: So, we want to make a Dracula movie that tells the origin story of the most famous vampire in the world.

Executive: Great! Universal has a rich history of making horror movies with iconic characters like this. We’d love to get in the business of making a good horror movie to rescue vampires from being such a punch line in chick lit.

Burk: Oh, no, this isn’t a horror movie. It’s going to be more like the 300 movies. It’ll be a dark atmosphere-y old war movie like that.

Executive: That sounds good too. A brave town hunkering down as they have to defend themselves from the unspeakable horror of the first ever vampire. I still like it a lot.

Matt: Dracula is going to be the good guy in this movie. He’s going to fight the army of the Ottoman Empire.

Executive: Ok, I guess anti-heroes have always done good business and having him fight against a giant army might be interesting. We’ve seen vampires overwhelm individuals but an army of thousands of people might pose an interesting challenge.

Burk: He’s going to kill thousands of people effortlessly in seconds, there won’t be a moment in the film where you believe that anyone is a legitimate challenge to Dracula’s power.

Executive: Well…that’s an interesting way to handle conflict. I think I can still greenlight this movie, if we drop it in October no one will notice it isn’t a scary movie until we already have a lot of their money. Can you at least make a bunch of scenes that feel like they come straight out of Game of Thrones?

Matt: Absolutely, we even already have Charles “Tywin Lannister” Dance himself already attached.

Executive: Great! Is $70 million enough to get this movie in to theaters?

Suffice to say this didn’t produce a great movie. All origin movies have to deal with a certain feeling of inevitability but the good ones manage to do things that shine a new light on the stores we’ve heard a million times. Dracula Untold decides to tell us the parts of the story no one ever cared enough about to ask. I’m not in to Dracula movies to see Dracula care about his family or struggle with the burden of ruling Transylvania. I want to see vampire stuff, victims being stalked and seduced and the like. Dracula Untold gives that to me in the last three minutes of the movie. It’s like making a Superman movie where he doesn’t save Lois Lane until the end credits are rolling. There are a lot of movies this could have been and some of them might have even been satisfying but this was a terrible vampire movie and I would call it a disgrace to the name Dracula but I’ve seen Dracula 2000.

Photo by BagoGames

The Point Radio: THE STRAIN Proves Grit Beats Glitter

FX’s THE STRAIN winds up it’s first season this weekend and we sat down with Guillermo del Toro and his cast to talk about where the show ended, where it goes next and how their vampires stack up against those who “glitter”. Plus famed actress, Isabella Rossellini takes her GREEN PORNO from TV to the stage and tells us how it all got started.

THE POINT covers it 24/7! Take us ANYWHERE on ANY mobile device (Apple or Android). Just  get the free app, iNet Radio in The  iTunes App store – and it’s FREE!  The Point Radio  – 24 hours a day of pop culture fun. GO HERE and LISTEN FREE  – and follow us on Twitter @ThePointRadio.