Archive for September, 2014

AWESOME-tober-fest 2014: Fangoria Scream Great #1 – The Incredible Melting Man (1983)

Posted in Fangoria, Genres, horror, magazine, monsters, movies, nostalgia, pop culture, zombies with tags , , , , , , , , , on September 30, 2014 by Paxton

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Fangoria was known for it’s pull-out posters. These posters featured screen grabs from popular horror movies. Fangoria labeled the posters Scream Greats. However, these pull-out posters weren’t added to the magazine until around the third year of the magazine’s existence.

Since I showed you the first ever Fangoria cover yesterday, let’s continue that “firsts” theme with the first ever Scream Great pull-out poster. Below is Scream Great #1 from Fangoria #26 way back in 1983. This first poster featured an image from 1977’s The Incredible Melting Man.

Scream Great 23

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Also, check out the blog Countdown to Halloween for more Halloween-y, bloggy AWESOMEness.

AWESOME-tober-fest 2014: Fangoria #1 – 25 years of Godzilla (1979)

Posted in Fangoria, Genres, Halloween, holiday, horror, magazine, monsters, movies, nostalgia, pop culture with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on September 29, 2014 by Paxton

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AWESOME-tober-fest 2014 begins!

Let’s begin this year’s AWESOME-tober-fest Fangoria celebration with a quick look at the cover to the very first issue of Fangoria from 1979.

Fangoria 01 cover

As you can see, there was a feature about the history of Godzilla movies up to that point (25 YEARS!).  I scanned in that article, so if you want to read it, here is page 1 on my Flickr stream.  Just click to the right to continue through the article’s 8 pages.

There were two pretty awesome Godzilla pin-ups that came with the article. The first is an awesome painting featuring Godzilla battling Megalon on the top of the Twin Towers which I thought has to be an homage to the 1976 King Kong remake with Jeff Bridges and Charles Grodin which featured a poster with Kong astride the same Twin Towers.  However, if you read the article, the below poster was designed for the 1973 Godzilla vs Megalon movie.  And it features a scene that never appeared in said movie.  I love this poster.

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This second pin-up is a better look at the Godzilla painting that was used on the cover.

Godzilla pin-up 02

See you guys tomorrow for more, gory goodness from my favorite issues of Fangoria magazine.

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Also, check out the blog Countdown to Halloween for more Halloween-y, bloggy AWESOMEness.

AWESOME-tober-fest begins on Monday!

Posted in Fangoria, Halloween, holiday, magazine with tags , , , , , on September 26, 2014 by Paxton

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This is it. My month long Halloween celebration, AWESOME-tober-fest, begins on Monday. I’ve taken down the “normal” header and colors and put up the spooky Halloween decorations. On Monday I’ll begin talking about all things Fangoria magazine. Expect to see covers, Scream Greats posters, articles, pictures and ads.  All the things that made Fangoria the best in horror entertainment.

Plus, every Friday in October I’m going to review a cult horror B-movie of the type that you could typically find inside the pages of the magazine.  And, honestly, considering the 5 movies I’ve picked, calling them “B movies” is probably a bit generous.  But they are all chock full of ridiculous fun and a plethora of all your favorite cult movie stars.  And I’ve picked movies I’ve never watched before.  It’s going to be a blast.

See you back here on Monday.

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Nerd Lunch Episode 110: Lost in Time #TBT

Posted in nostalgia, podcast, pop culture, time travel with tags , , , on September 25, 2014 by Paxton

Nerd Lunch Podcast

Hurtled 10 months into the future, our long lost 110th episode has finally been retrieved out of the time stream. CT and I welcome back to the show Tim Lybarger in this very special Throwback Thursday episode.

Lost in Time photos

This week the nerds are thrown back to three different points in their history where they must survive ten months with nothing but the clothes on their back. How do they survive? What friends do they make in the past? What do they change? All these questions are answered and more! Plus, Nerd To-Dos feature Doctor Who, Thor 2 and Christmas.

Download this episode from iTunes, Stitcher or listen to it on Feedburner.

Or listen to it online right here.

Cavalcade Comics #4 – Ghost Rider vs Ghost Rider Halloween showdown!

Posted in comic books, pop culture with tags , , , , , on September 24, 2014 by Paxton

Cavalcade Comics Vintage Comic Throwdown

Welcome to issue #4 of my Vintage Comic Throwdown series where I pit character vs character in a vintage comic book cover showdown.

This time, since we are only DAYS away from the start of AWESOME-tober-fest 2014, I thought I would do a somewhat Halloween-type throwdown featuring two “supernatural” characters. And I chose two incarnations of the Ghost Rider character. Check out my cover for Cavalcade Comics #4 – Ghost Rider vs Ghost Rider.

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Many people may not realize that Ghost Rider actually started out as a Golden Age gunfighter character that debuted in 1949’s Tim Holt Western Comics #11. The character was originally owned by Magazine Enterprises but was bought out by Marvel and revamped in the 70s into a motorcycle riding demon.  And now I have them battling each other on the city streets.

For those that like to know, this cover is primarily based on Marvel’s Ghost Rider #31 from 1978 (left) and I took the original Ghost Rider from Ghost Rider #2 from 1950 (right).

Ghost Rider 31 Ghost Rider 02

Because this is a special Halloween issue, I decided to make an alternate cover.  This second cover is based instead on an old Golden Age Ghost Rider cover instead of the newer Marvel cover.

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Imagine that this is the direct cover and the previous one is the newsstand cover.

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Reading and reviewing the 1992-93 launch titles for Image Comics

Posted in comic books with tags , , on September 10, 2014 by Paxton

Cavalcade Comics

You may have heard on Nerd Lunch that I set out a goal of reading the original flagship titles of Image Comics’ 1992 launch. I remember collecting comics at the time, but I mostly ignored the Image Comics onslaught because as a comic reader, I wasn’t a fan of most of those guys. Todd McFarlane I knew from Spider-Man and Venom, and I liked him, but Jim Lee and Rob Liefeld I knew from X-Men and X-Force and I was NOT a fan. Back then, Lee and Liefeld had very similar art styles that I hated. Lee has since evolved into one of my favorite artists but Liefeld has not evolved AT ALL and continues to be an atrocious artist. Again, if you listen to the podcast, you may have heard me mention Liefeld a few times.

Regardless, I was waxing nostalgic about that 1992 Image comics launch and regretting that I never really gave those first 6 or 7 titles a chance, especially now that I am a big fan of Jim Lee.  So, I thought I’d revisit those launch titles today with fresh eyes and see if they still hold up.

So, let’s go in the order I read them.

Spawn 01 Spawn splash page
Spawn  (creator: Todd MacFarlane) – Released in May 1992.  This is the big launch release of Image.  It wasn’t first, that award goes to Liefeld’s Youngblood, which I’ll get to, but this title personifies the early days of Image Comics.  And I’ve never read it.  I think I even own the first issue from when I bought it off the comic rack, but I never read it.  Looking over the run of the series the first 20 issues features mostly McFarlane with fill-ins by Greg Capullo on art as well as Grant Morrison, Alan Moore, Neil Gaiman, Erik Larsen, Dave Sims and Frank Miller on writing duties whenever Todd had to drop off to do a crossover.  So I thought those 20 issues was a good indicator of the series as a whole.  So that’s what I read, and, for the most part, I liked it.  The story is a little disjointed and all over the place, but Spawn as a concept is pretty cool and it keeps a lot of the mystery of the character alive by not revealing too much all at once.  And McFarlane’s art style is CRAZY.  It’s a very splash page heavy aesthetic with ridiculous amounts of cape porn.  I thought Batman artists like to draw capes, but McFarlane is not only on a different level, he’s playing a completely different game.  Amazing. I’d recommend this, the art definitely elevates this, but the story isn’t that bad either.

Wildcats #1 Wildcats #4
WildC.A.T.S. (creators: Jim Lee and Brandon Choi) – Of all the titles I was planning to read, this was the one I was most excited about.  Like I mentioned, Jim Lee is currently one of my favorite artists.  He won me over with Batman: Hush and his work on the New 52 Justice League.  Since these early Image days Lee has evolved into an amazing artist.  Traveling back in time to 1992 to read the first 13 issues of this title, I remember why I stopped reading X-Men. This book is pretty much garbage. The art is confusing and jumbled.  There are WAY too many characters and WAY too many characters are too similar to each other as well as WAY too similar to Wolverine.  By my count there are at least three overt Wolverine analogs in this book.  And holy sh*t, Lee, stop putting SO MUCH F**KING DIALOG ON THE PAGE.  Check out this splash page (click to make BIGGER).

Wildcats splash page

This is the problem with the entire comic. Too many characters, too much backstory, too much goddam dialog.  It was a monumental chore reading through the first 13 issues.  I’m glad that’s over.  I also acquired a later run of WildC.A.T.S. which featured a redesign by Alan Moore who wrote about 14 issues of the title in the late 90s.  However, I’m going to wait a little bit to read those.  I’m WildC.A.T.’ed out.  Plus, I HATE typing that stupid title with the periods every. single. time.

Savage Dragon 01 Savage Dragon 02
The Savage Dragon (Creator: Erik Larsen) – This was the title I was most excited about trying after WildC.A.T.S. (HATE. Typing. That. Name.).  I’ve never read Larsen’s Dragon comic but I’ve always wanted to start.  This was the perfect opportunity.  It was tough to ferret out where I should begin.  Apparently it started as a four issue mini-series, and then began as a regular title, starting over again at #1.  Once I figured that out, I was able to grab the Baptism of Fire collection with that first mini-series and then also grab the first 6 issues of the regular title.  I also bought a standalone issue #0 from 2009 which featured the never before revealed origin of Savage Dragon that was only printed in one of Image Comics’ anniversary collections.  And it holds up.  This is a pretty fun, creative book.  Larsen has a lot of fun with the characters and introduces interesting villains and side characters you actually want to read about.  There are even some awesome guest stars like the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles in issue #2.  All in all, a pretty great book that I would love to continue reading from this point forward.  And it’s amazing to me that Erik Larsen has written and drawn the majority of this book since the very beginning.  Keep on keepin’ on, Erik.

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AWESOME-tober-fest 2014 is coming!

Posted in Halloween, magazine, nostalgia, pop culture with tags , , , , , , , on September 4, 2014 by Paxton

AWESOME-tober-fest 2014

It’s the first week in September!  Which means we are now officially 1 month from October 1st, which is the beginning of my annual AWESOME-tober-fest Halloween celebration.  Needless to say I am hip deep in preparations for this year’s festivities.

Technically, this is my EIGHTH year doing a Halloween celebration as I started in 2007 with a few posts during the month of October.  However, the daily AWESOME-tober-fest as you’ve come to know it wasn’t really born until 2009 when I did Frankenstein.  Which means this is my sixth year of doing the full blown AWESOME-tober-fest celebration.

Since Frankenstein in 2009 I’ve covered; wolf men, vampires, movie maniacs and then zombies.  My original plan was to do ghosts as my theme this year, but you know what, I thought it was high time I paid special attention to one thing that really had an effect on me in my high school days.  And it crosses all these boundaries.  This year I want to focus on Fangoria magazine.


I’ve used scans from old Fangoria magazines throughout each year of AWESOME-tober-fest, but this year I’m going to be doing an entire month of only Fangoria goodness featuring covers, articles, ads, pictures, Scream Greats movie posters, the Video Eye of Dr Cyclops and the Nightmare Library.

Video Eye of Dr Cyclops
Nightmare Library

I’ve got a stack of magazines and I’m going to comb through them all and bring you some of my favorite content from all of my favorite issues of horror’s greatest magazine.

And, as a bonus, every Friday in October is going to be Fangoria Movie Friday.  So it’s not just all scanned magazine content I’m going to review old B-horror movies that were featured in 5 of my favorite issues of Fangoria.  These won’t be the A-listers like a Nightmare on Elm Street or a Friday the 13th.  I’m talking something more along the lines of The Reanimator (which I reviewed last year).  I’m looking forward to those reviews because I’ve picked 5 movies (one for each Friday in October) that I’ve never seen before but have always wanted to watch.  And the movie will definitely have been featured in some way in an issue of Fangoria.  It should be a lot of fun.

So gird your loins, ladies and gents, and head back here on Oct 1 and, you know what, that’s a Wednesday, I’m making an executive decision, AWESOME-tober-fest 2014 will start two days earlier on Monday Sep 29.  Holy crap, I’m starting AWESOME-tober-fest in September!  I hope I don’t get cited by the Halloween police.  The staff here at the blog just looked at me with murder in their eyes.  Oh well, hopefully I’ll see you back here at the end of the month!

And, as always, I’ll be a part of the giant Countdown to Halloween celebration as well.
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Check out the blog Countdown to Halloween for more information on how you, too, can join in on the fun.