FYI READERS: The writing between the "++++++++++++++++" indicates SPOILERS! EVERYTHING ELSE is safe for ya!

Believe it or not I was not in line for Harry Potter and The Deathly Hallows, I did not attend 1 "Potter Party" nor preorder my book on Amazon.com to ensure a Saturday delivery. I nonchalantly reserved a copy on the Tuesday before, and didn't pick up the book until about 3pm in the afternoon. That was about as rational as my actions were, as once I got the book home it was an exercise in obsession in insanity.

31 Hours later (counting 6 hours of sleep I needed from 6am to 12pm), and I was finished with the final chapter in the 7 year story of Harry and the wizarding world he inhabited. Did I cry? Heck yeah I did! Several times throughout the book and the last 4 chapters were interrupted by my tears. And I'll tell you right now - it has a happy ending!! It confirmed things that could only make me happier! But all of this joy was somehow overshadowed that this would be the last time I would read something new about Hogwarts and Snape and Harry and the Weasleys.

How do you scare a Potter fan? More harrowing than the spoilers indicating that Harry dies (which for many of us was a necessary evil for those of us that believed that Harry was a horcrux and must be killed to end Voldemort and his ultimate evil) was the spoiler going around that Ron dies to save Hermione from some horrific torture by Voldemort. Hermione and Ron not being able to end up together in the end was enough to make my stomach turn. This story turned out to be unbelievably false, but nonetheless this is the one I held on to the most because it seemed that someone major of the 3 would have to die, and Ron was most likely as his skills were the least developed.

There is so much to be said about this book and so much I don't want to say too much about, so let's just get right into it.

==ROCK on Lady Rowling==
+The book's structure is a virtual tour of the prior books and Harry's adventures; starting at Privet Drive, The Burrough, Grimmauld Place, The Ministry of Magic, Gringrotts and Hog's head Tavern are revisited. Of course Hogwarts and The Forbidden Forest are the locale starts at the end (as it should be). Seeing new places like Malfoy Manor, the Lovegood's estate and Godric's Hollow (and what a dramatic visit that is!) are just icing on the cake.

+My boy Snape is rarely seen or heard from firsthand until "The Prince's Tale" (Ch. 33) and this is where we learn the real deal about Severus, what motivates him and why he is more like Harry than the reader could ever have realized. My favorite chapter by far.

+Neville Longbottom is finally able to separate himself from the shadow of Harry in a spectacular fashion and become a hero in his own rite. Congrats to Neville!

+The tying up of loose ends is done quite nicely, with the further revelation that some names (like the "evil wizard Grindelvald") mentioned in passing are more important than could ever be forseen.

+Uber-kudos to Rowling's chapter "King's Cross" (Ch.35) which contains a crying mass that is never identified. Children may be a bit confused by this chapter but I'm glad that Rowling gave the older fan something to ponder and be proud of. The astute reader knows that this is Voldemort's small bit of humanity, the only shred that is still left of the pure evil that Voldemort has become. Dumbledore iterates that there is no hope left for him...and only in the final Chapter (Ch. 36 "The Flaw in the Plan") is this confirmed.

+My favorite part in the book? Harry calling Voldemort "TOM" - the ultimate slap in the face for the all-powerful Dark Lord.

==JEERS for JK==
+Percy's reconciliation and return to the Weasley family is rushed and honestly, barely needed.

+The EPILOGUE? Totally uncalled for. Have Harry give Ginny a hug and a smooch at the end of the last chapter and I think the future would've sealed itself.

+Did Harry really have to lose Hedwig too? Rowling really wanted to drive home that the most important people and things in Harry's life will be destroyed, save for the friends around him that mutate into his family.

==It just HAD to Happen to Harry==
+I'm still a little peeved at Dumbledore. I know that his guesses are almost always right, but even Snape was a little put-off with Dumbledore's final plans. Chapter "King's Cross" may have tied up loose ends and helped Dumbledore's character in the eyes of some fans, but I think I'll remain bitter.

+Quite a lot of deaths took place, the most jarring to me being Fred Weasley. I'm not a twin, but my father is and so the phenomena of twins has always intrigued me. I hope that George is able to use his great humor to get through his brother's death.

+and Dammit!! I (and my sister) WAS RIGHT!!! Harry was a horcrux. You gotta love the confirmation of a theory.

It has been 8 days since I finished the very final Harry Potter book Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, and yet the PPD (Post Potter Depression) still lingers. Surely it’s just a book, a fictional story about some silly wizard boy, but the world that JK Rowling created captivated me beyond comprehension of most “muggles.” This was a series that could be enjoyed by child and adult alike, read on a very cursory level or depths plumbed for a higher understand and theme. For generations to come I can see myself pulling out the 7-book set and starting all over again and seeing new details I never caught before. I look forward to these times because in the end that is what will make this series timeless and relative to me.

Till next time Kittlings.


Bordello of the Punk Variety

It was a typical Thursday evening, or as typical as my evenings had become with my (then) new beau Goddard. We had attended dinner with the cast of MURDERERS and had retired to my abode for some continued drinking and downtime. Music videos ON DEMAND is a hobby of mine as I have discovered some of my favorite bands (THE FAINT for one) from the various video channels provided. I had already gone through my standards as of late (PEEPING TOM and 30 SECONDS TO MARS), and was perusing the menus for something new and interesting when Goddard rather non-chalantly requested I play GOGOL BORDELLO’s “Not a Crime.” This band was not even a blip on my radar but it was as if I was a lowly human and Prometheus just offered me fire. Within one minute I knew I needed to hear every stitch of music this group ever produced.

They were debauched and bohemian in a frenetic sense; it was if I had stumbled upon a hole in the wall bar in Romany with the local house band playing their most popular drinking song to a loving crowd. The energy, even over the TV screen was intense.

The Wikipedia entry describes GOGOL as “gypsy punk” and it seems like a fitting label as GOGOL’s 3rd album is entitled “Gypsy Punks.” The group consists of many members, with the majority claiming Easter European descent-a heritage that is extremely apparent in their musical style and influence. Touting both an accordian and fiddle player combined with raunchy acoustic guitars, the sound is both cabaret classic and modern punk choppy in the most delightful way. The music and lyrics so inspiring that the same day my “go-to music pal” Stefan heard them for the first time he threatened to start his own Slavic punk band. (((Update on that – Go-To Music Pal got a guitar for Christmas and is still not in and sort of band))). =)

Since that fateful Autumn evening when the BORDELLO made its mark on me, I have seen them twice in concert and maintain it is perhaps the best live show I’ve ever seen (I still hold a special place in my heart for KAISER CHIEFS that totally rocked my socks off). One of the most interesting little tid-bits I have since learned about the band is that the **lead singer** is also the actor in EVERYTHING IS ILLUMINATED. Clean-shaven, sans porno-moustache, and playing a foreigner obsessed with hip-hop and Michael Jackson. The major players in the band actually make a cameo…add to the juicy gossip that you have the Bass drum hot gal dating (Married to?) lead singer and you’ve got yourself one interesting band musically and otherwise.

Be sure to check out “gypsy punks” and enjoy these couple videos taken from their most recent show at the Trocadero in Philadelphia. Video by Stefan; shakiness courtesy of rockin’ crowd.

My pal Dave Johnson asked me to promote their DRINK AND DRAW Charity event during SDCC, but alas, it was Thursday and I’m a little late this week with my column. Sorry Reverend!!! But you can always check out Drink and Draw’s Social Club myspace page, as well as their collected art available in book form. Includes a foreword by yours truly!
http://www.drinkanddraw.com/ <===official site
www.myspace.com/drinkanddraw <====myspace goodness
http://www.amazon.com/Drink-Draw-1-Dave-Johnson/dp/1582407142 <===buy the book
Till next time kittlings. Monday will FINALLY reveal my final thoughts on the series that made a grown woman cry—HARRY POTTER.


REWIND - Asian Horror Flashback

(((this story originally appeared on another web site, Sorry kittlings I'm still writing my HARRY POTTER AND THE DEATHLY HALLOWS review, stay tuned for THURSDAY~!)))

Ze Brickthrower has not been able to read, sleep or watch TV properly since Ju-On The Grudge entered my stratosphere. I have
watched that film over 15 times and the bloody thing still makes me jump. People who have gone to horror films will say “But Mary, you jump at EVERYTHING!” and “You know you’re the one that cried in the theater while watching The Blair Witch Project.” And while these statements used to hold true, I have been schooled in the horror genre enough (with Italian Horror and early 80's specifically) to the point where I have now branched off to the Asian Horror genre on my own.

Here I go again. ”As if”, my friends might be saying. I am the girl that got scared whilst smoking a cigarette after watching The Ring because I saw a black cat and I could’ve sworn that the curtain moved by itself!

Its not that there are huge monsters or aliens or evil of epic proportions that drives the fear in Asian horror. The majority of the Asian cult that I've watched revolve around one evil place, be it a house, a village, a warehouse, where ghosts from a prior horrendous act take revenge on any who enter their space.

The camera angles are the creepiest things about these films. As a viewer, we are not allowed to see the entire picture, or we see just enough
of the evil (whether it be a little boy's feet, a bloody hand, a strand of hair, or a dark water spot) to make us freeze into fear at what is about to happen. The camera sweeps above the victim as she/he slowly turns their head and looks around, but it is not until she/he swings back around is the evil in front of her, on her, clawing her or running out of frame quicker than lightening. You might miss it if you're not paying attention.

It’s this presence of evil, an evil that is always obscured, blurred, or just barely in the frame, that is what makes the genre one of the most frightening.

Although both Dark Water and The Eye h
ad this type of camera shot down to perfection, and Ju-on exemplifies the ghost story gone extreme, the repetition is inevitable, but inevitable for any genre. Cliché comes quick as soon as anything pop culture related is given a label. But just as many people are sick of M. Night Shymalan and his “formula,” I maintain that with him and Asian cult, one scene in the entire film can make it worth your time and attention. I do not doubt this for one second. My case in point lies in the eerie and mysterious A Tale of Two Sisters.

The color in many of these films wrestles with vivid and lush hues or stark white and black imagery. A Tale… has one scene in particular that illustrates this with the simple set of a small kitchen which leads into a dining room. The kitchen is flourescent lit a
nd bathed in white and pastel blue; a wooden 2-door wide entry way leads to dark wood and a deep red and green color scheme. In this scene in particular, the Stepmom in the film hears something and gets on the kitchen floor to peer underneath the sink. Of course this is a classic set-up; nothing new here—the audience knows that something scary is going to happen. The scene is filled with 3 things: the actor’s full face, the floor of white tile, and behind her, in clear focus and seated in the dining room table is a female (only her bottom half revealing a floor length dress) in a heavy green fabric. The Stepmom turns around quickly but the dining room is now empty. This is not the full scene, but this game of cat and mouse with the audience continues for minutes more and is enough tension to fill the entire film, let alone one act.

Some words on JU-ON THE GRUDGE written and directed by Takashi Shimizu. If you’ve seen
THE RING (the American version) and were terrified by the overall creepiness and dread mood cast over every frame, then JU-ON is going to make you piss your pants. Asian Cult Cinema is the wave of the future kittlings, at least for those of us sick of the general mediocrity present in American film today. JU-ON THE GRUDGE is not the first in the series of these films, but the original is hard to find. It is not detrimental to see the first in this series to understand it, a flashback at the beginning of the film is enough of a preface. “The Grudge” being the accurate word in the title as the creepy little boy that haunts the Katsuya house certainly seems to hold quite a big one. The plot is somewhat SHINING-esque with the murder of a wife and disappearance of their child holds a house captive by evil. As we were watching the film, my esteemed colleague Ms. Irate remarked, “This is the horror PULP FICTION” and she’s totally right. The scenes are shown out of order, with separate lives and storylines converging at the Katsuya house is both smart and stylized. The plot strays from the usual “Haunted House” cliché as Toshio (the missing boy previously mentioned) is able to appear anywhere and follow his prey to the their places of employment, homes, or ever better to draw them back to the house where it all began. And to further the creepiness factor, the soundtrack is almost non-existent—a silence hangs heavy over every scene—until too late; a standard eerie horror score is put in to make the tension almost unbearable. Not once but twice I screamed out loud. I was also fidgeting like a crack fiend. I have subsequently viewed the sequel, which is just as confusing but loses some of the original luster.

Finally, let me leave you with a list of the Asian Cult that will leave you either a fiend or annoyed at me for putting you through this:
DARK WATER (soon to be an American remake starring Jennifer Connelly
JU-ON THE CURSE (the original made for TV movie; also has a sequel)
TOMIE (which touts 3 sequels!)


Harry Potter and the 37 different Spoilers

So I caved. Apparently the real Epilogue of the Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows is online, and I kinda scanned it. Several things about the pages looked real, but the end to the story itself hardly makes sense. It just seemed…too easy if you catch my gist. I also had my sister do some recon and reveal to me who will be killed off. After all, I have to believe its how you get to the end of the book – not that actual outcome. Word on the street is there are 37 different spoiler endings available online at this point in time, so here's hoping anything I read was a complete lie.

I’m more interested to see Harry’s search for horcruxes, etc. Either way, I’ve failed at keeping the spoilers from mine eyes and ears. I really do believe that even if I managed to keep away from the interwebs until I obtained the book, I would still have looked through the book once it was in my possession. That’s just the way I am. I always skip ahead comics and novels. Sometimes it can’t be helped.

What the heck Sandman?
As I continue with the Sandman series, I was halted for quite a while on a particularly lame story, in “Cluracan’s Tale”. Sorry Neil [Gaiman], but this story is almost painful to read. The other tales flow together so well it is almost criminal to be stopped dead in my tracks with this boring issue. And maybe it’s just me but every time we’re in the Faerie realm I feel like I’m reading about A Midsummer’s Night Dreamthe New Class or something. My favorite part of this story was the “Frame” story outside of this one, where Cluracan (the character the story is named after) is interrogated by the other patrons of the “The Inn at the End of the World” regarding his yarn, as they also seem disgruntled by his tale. I was glad to finish this issue and continue with “Hobs Leviathan” which is a bloody amazing story so far, quite possibly my 2nd favorite issue so far (after “24” in the 1st trade).

If you’re in NEW YORK or the outlying areas, you might want to check out this show:

Americans UK will be rockin’ out @ 9pm, I chatted a bit with JEF UK and he gave me some info on his band and the show: “Americans UK will be taking over the Hot Rocks Party @ the Delancey Lounge on the Lower East Side. $5 admission! Two for one wells until 8:30 and free PBR at midnight! Other bands include THE ART OF SHOOTING, and GOLD STREETS. DJ's will be spinning '50's and '60's twist-and-rock-o-rama between sets. We play fast-paced, danceable punk and garage. Here is live footage of us so you can see just how much we don't suck: http://youtube.com/watch?v=K0HW-vzN4_4 "

Check them out, and get your arse up there if you’re in the area. I try to get up to NYC at least once a month and July’s trip is centered around this show. Can’t wait!

And if you're going to POTTER PARTIES on Friday, would love to hear about them. I'll be getting the book Saturday and reading through the weekend. Enjoy the weekend kittlings!


Harry's all up in my Hallows

WARNING !!! MAJOR SPOILERS AHEAD IF YOU HAVEN'T READ THE BOOKS. YOU HAVE BEEN WARNED. ((but there are other blurbs too kids! So skip over this first part and you'll be solid!))

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows

What does HALLOWS mean anyway? DEF – 1. To make or set apart as holy. 2.To respect or honor greatly; revere.
((("hallow." The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition. Houghton Mifflin Company, 2004. 16 Jul. 2007. http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/hallow.)))

I didn’t become a full-fledged Harry Potter fan until the 3rd film, The Prisoner of Azkaban. Forced to see it with my family as my niece was quite into it, I figured “why not?” after all my mother was paying for my ticket. I was blown away, hooked, knew that I needed to find out more about this Harry Potter bloke right away. After all, this boy was cute.

I can’t deny it. Daniel Radcliffe hit puberty around the time of the Prisoner of Azkaban, and started looking VERY hot! I’m the girl that cat-called during Harry’s bathtub scene in Goblet of Fire and had a countdown clock for Daniel Radliffe’s 18th birthday (only 7 days away ladies!!). My boyfriend finds it creepy, my family mocks me, yet I can’t deny the attraction to fictional Harry. But I digress.

After seeing the 3rd film, I read all of the books and became hooked. I was on a constant cycle of reading. I would read the entire series and start over again. It actually was a major and conscious decision to STOP reading the series and move onto other things (trust me, I’ll be starting again soon, once the new book comes out).

So the new book. CANNOT WAIT!!!! There are the obvious questions – will Harry die? JK Rowling has promised 2 major deaths in this final novel. I’m sorry for all of those fans of Harry (me included but something I’m willing to accept) – but his death is likely. Here are some of my predictions and theories:

1-My sister has convinced me that Harry is a horcrux (if you haven’t read the books and want to know – Lord Voldemort has divided his soul into 7 parts to ensure immortality, each part called a horcrux). For Voldemort to be defeated, all horcruxes must be destroyed. Harry has shown his connection with the Dark Lord in previous novels (Goblet of Fire and Order of the Phoenix) particularly where he sees things through Nagini’s eyes. Nagini being Voldemort's snake, loyal companion and most likely one of his horcruxes. If we list the horcruxes that are known:
1-item from Slytherin (Destroyed by Headmaster Dumbledore)
2-item from Hufflepuff
3-item from Ravenclaw
4-Locket (another Slytherin item, searched for by Dumbledore and Harry – stolen by R.A.B. aka Regulus Black?)
5-Nagini (unconfirmed)
6-Tom Riddle’s journal (Destroyed)
7-Gryiffindor Item OR ??? – HARRY (unconfirmed - the only Gryffindor artifact left is the sword which has been protected/bewitched)

2-I believed at first that Dumbledore was not dead, in the sense of Gandelf the Gray from the Lord of the Rings trilogy, but this is probably not true. After all, his portrait was filled in the Headmaster’s house of Hogwarts, thus symbolizing his demise. The other noted death from the series is Harry’s godfather, Sirius Black. But with the portrait and the mirror (mentioned in books 6 and 5 respectively), communication from the beyond is possible. And likely. After all, these are Harry’s 2 mentors, dead but still major characters in the series…and full of knowledge about YOU KNOW WHO.

3- SEVERUS SNAPE – bad or good? He is the ultimate red herring. Often looked to by the Harry, Hermione and Ron as the evil one, he leads them off the trail again and again in the novels. Will this continue with the final chapter or will he be revealed as all good? I hope for his redemption; but I also know that his hatred for Harry’s father runs deep. I am gunning for a good Snape.
In the end, despite the outcome of Deathly Hallows, my biggest hope is for a prequel recounting Harry’s parents time at Hogwarts. The ridicule that Snape was subjected to whilst being enamored over Lily; the frat boy mentality of Padfoot, Prongs, Wormtail and Moony – this intrigues me most after the conclusion of Harry’s 7 years at Hogwarts. Either way – I cannot wait for the final book and the end to a brilliant and exciting series that has captured even this stuffy B.A. in English Graduate’s mind. =)

In other news –Josh “JAG” Garcia is a liar!!! Not once but 2 times over!!! The last 10 minutes of “Who Will Be The Next Food Network Star” proved to be the most rewarding as Jag was called out on not one but two lies about his prior life. Not only was he NOT a culinary school graduate but the Military man was never in Afghanistan despite his insistence that he was. He resigned himself from the competition and now it’s up to ladies Rory Schepisi and Amy Finley for the final episode. I’m hoping for Amy to win, next door gourmet is right up my alley.
I saw the new HP film over the weekend, and I enjoyed the heck out of it. But to agree with my boyfriend and my little sister – it mos def did not feel like a full Hogwarts year in the same vein as Goblet of Fire or Prisoner of Azkaban. Alan Rickman reprising his role as Snape was genius, glad to see him with more speaking parts than Goblet…I was fully surprised with Sirius’ death despite knowing full well it was coming (creative previews and sneak peeks helped out on that one); all in all I was happy with the final product. But shorter than all the other movies kinda makes me sad – it could’ve been 30 mins longer and showed MUCH MUCH more. The final book coming out helps satiate my HP fever.
And finally, despite Mel Gibson’s absolute insanity, Apocalypto is a gripping and beautiful film. No major actors, no snuff film tactics – just real history coupled with a simple story of a man trying to get back to his wife and family is executed wonderfully in this movie. Jaguars rule – nuff said.


The Overkill of 'Cloverfield'

It all started simple enough. I was up late on Friday night after the friends and the drinking had calmed down, surfing the internet and trying desperately to occupy my still wired brain. My Yahoo Mail shows the latest "Entertainment" Headlines along with the capacity of my inbox every time I sign on. And this headline : "'Transformers' Audiences get peek at new disaster pic" caught my eye. A new movie by J.J. Abrams? Written by Drew Goddard (of Lost fame)? The Bad Robot logo before the film? The trailer was *not* available on the internet yet; apparently Paramount pulled the few ones that had sneaked onto YouTube. But I was determined. My wired brain demanded that I find this thing before I settled into sleep. And find it, I did.

I did some google searches and video after video turned up fruitless. I would hit that "play" button only to be told that the video was removed. Finally, through a horrible bootleg (where someone actually WALKS in front of the screen at the very beginning of the trailer) I saw my first glimpse of "Cloverfield" in the pitch dark of my room.
The scene opens with some handheld footage of a going-away party for someone named "Rob," the usual party-goers dancing, mugging it up for the camera, talking about how much they're going to miss Rob once he leaves for Japan. Suddenly a thunderous roar is heard over the audio of the party, then pitch black...and when the lights come back on a TV is being filmed, reporting the roar with the words "Earthquake" printed below the newscaster. Another roar, shaking of the camera; one of the on-lookers suggests the roof of the building for a better look at what is going on. Here is where the trailer becomes truly frightening as we see the skyline of New York City and the tallest buildings lit up by fire and explosion. Huge fiery shards of building hurl towards the camera as complete mayhem breaks out. Screaming, frenzied shots of running and destruction round out the barely 2-minute trailer with the final piece of NYC hitting the ground right by our cameraman is the head of Statue of Liberty. Then no title, just the credits of JJ Abrams (producer), Matt Reeves (director), and the ominous release date: 1-18-08.

Seriously, if you haven't seen this for yourself yet, the 1st thing you need to do is to stop reading, open up another window, and check it out: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QX8cpgLkj7U

The internet is now abuzz with fact and speculation and its hard to distinguish between the two. I've done as much research as one can do on this film without murdering my next of kin, and here is what I've been able to gather.

+There is not title to this project yet. The "fake" working title (per IMDB.com) is Cloverfield. IMDB has it titles "Untitled J.J. Abrams Project." It is also being referred to as 1-18-08 as per the end credits and the web site.

+While many people have pointed to http://www.ethanwasright.com/, http://www.parasitemovie.com/ as being related to the film, JJ Abrams has squashed these theories (at least for now) - by releasing a statement on Ain't It Cool News --http://www.aintitcool.com/node/33261

+Some virtual unknowns are heading up the cast including Michael Stahl David (The Black Donnellys), Odet Jasmin, Mike Vogel (Supercross) and Lizzy Caplan (The Class)

+The "hipsters of the internet" are saying that it might just be CTHULU and they have one thing going for them: the rights to HP Lovecraft's stories have gone into public domain. So those monsters are up for grabs. The mention of "Rob" going to Japan, could almost be a tongue-in-cheek reference to Godzilla, that other huge monster that is known to wreak havoc on large cities.
+The bare bones official website http://www.1-18.08.com/ which shows just 2 snapshots (nothing clickable but you are able to move the photos around the screen) apparently only had 1 photo a few weeks ago. I have not been able to confirm this but I will be checking back often to see if photos are added. Stay tuned.

WHAT WE DON'T KNOW - (aka I dig Speculation)
+While Abrams has said that http://www.parasitemovie.com/ has nothing to do with the movie, it is rather odd that the trailer for the film is available on said site. I followed the link provided by the ??? that is at the bottom of the screen. This leads the browser to http://www.tossinggames.com/ which it a puzzle within itself. I browsed the message board, which has this very random post on it as well, by "Steve" who is admin for the forum:
Answers:Are Ethan Haas and such sites connected? Per JJA, no, not a bit (although you were lead to believe that they were!)

Why? In due time you will understand, but in the meantime I will tell you to google the word "buzz".

What does this site (http://www.TossingGames.com) and the host site (http://www.SledRiding.com) have to do with any of this?

If JJA hasn't said yet, then you will have to wait and see on 8-1-07. It sure beats waiting until 1-18-08.

What does (http://www.1-18-08.com) and (http://www.ParasiteMovie.com) have to do with any of this?

Again, if JJA hasn't said yet, then you will have to wait and see on 8-1-07. I am not obligated to say.

Also it should be noted that the site talks about "MONSTER SIZED GAMES" and leads to other sites. Confused? Join the bloody club kittlings. I took the bait though and googled "BUZZ" but found nothing - probably just a joke because all this movie is right now is buzz.

+the Ethan Haas hubbub is supposedly the part of some ARG (Alternate Reality Gaming) that is coming out soon, as is this the web sites that branch from this. It is pretty strange that http://www.ethanhaas.org/ also has a link to Lost related Hanso Foundation. To add to the insanity, http://ethanhaaswaswrong.blogspot.com/ is written in an alphabet that is only decipherable if you have the key (I'm not going to give you everything guys).

JJ Abrams and Matt Reeves are chuckling right now at the insanity and buzz they have spawned with a little 2 minute trailer for a film that isn't even done yet. But here is what I believe: It is NOT Lovecraft, it is NOT Godzilla. The creators of this film have often borrowed small parts of other literature and myth (in both Lost and Alias) but never blatantly told someone else's story. Why would they start now? If anything they are only going to increase their own mythos by putting in small clues to the Hanso Foundation, etc. With Abrams track record of smart and exciting work I haven't a doubt in my mind that this viral internet craziness is only the tip of the iceberg for this film. Until August 1st when more information will be revealed - the speculation continues.

Do you have any theories?? Share'em in the COMMENTS section.
Ze Brickthrower would like to thank M.Sean McManus for all of his help in research and compiling info for this story. Be sure to check out http://www.thelastsin.com/, the official site of McManus' comic book THE LAST SIN OF MARK GRIMM where you can check out the trailer, read previews, and buy the comic online.
((PHOTO 1 - NYC gets blowed up ; PHOTO 2 - OH NOES! Poor Lady Liberty, the end of the Cloverfield Trailer)))


Shout at the Devil

Guillermo del Toro's THE DEVIL'S BACKBONE (Originally titled EL ESPINAZO DEL DIABLO in Spain) is a creepy and stunning film from start to finish. The story is based in 1939 Spain at the end of the Spanish Civil War. A young boy (Carlos, played by Fernando Tielve) is brought to an orphanage that is barely surviving on the harsh outskirts of the country. Not even 5 minutes in his new habitat and the boy starts seeing the ghost of a dead boy that is known as "the one who sighs" - and Carlos is thrown headfirst into the secretive and harsh past of the school. He is curious to find out what has caused the ghost to haunt the place, while trying to outwit the school bully and stay away from abusive caretaker Jacinto (Eduardo Noriega). Everyone seems to have secrets...even the kind Professor Casares (Federico Luppi) and stern headmistress Carmen (Marisa Paredes).

Never overdone, this movie was spellbinding in its look and tone. The schoolyard itself is ominous with a huge bomb decorating it (one that has been diffused but cannot be removed for whatever reason) -- an ever constant reminder of the war and death that has taken its toll on the country. The typical Hollywood flash and scream-fest is checked at the door for a utterly spooky tale that reveals many more ghosts than a simple dead boy ghost with a warning. I found the sincerity of Federico Luppi's character Casares; he is what every "good" archetype strives to be. This film may be a few years old but holds up wonderfully in a horror genre that becomes more and more disposable every year.


The Beauty of American Elf -

James Kochalka may be a name not readily mentioned in mainstream comic book conversations but within the independent scene he is revered as one of the best. Highly prolific with such works as Monkey Vs. Robot, Peanutbutter & Jeremy, and Quit Your Job, he is known for his large output of comics. But he participates in other mediums as well.

He shares his namesake with his band, James Kochalka Superstar, a pure rock extravaganza that earned a spot on Rolling Stone’s list of the "Top 100 Songs of 2006" with the super-catchy "Britney’s Silver Can" (a tune capturing the world’s obsession with Justin Timberlake by repeating his name over and over...and over again).

Kochalka also just ended a stint at the Giant Robot Gallery in New York City, that spotlighted his oil painting work. But this "James of all Trades" illustrates his most profound art with his daily diary comic strip, known as American Elf.

Started in 1998, the premise is simple: Kochalka composes a small (usually 4 panels) strip revealing an event that took place that day. This endeavor is not striking in the single day’s strip but in the sum of its parts; the chronicling of what may seem mundane and unremarkable becomes simply amazing with the sheer volume and the universal appeal of it. Writing about his family, his cat, his work, his band, his fears, Kochalka has produced one strip every day for the past 9 years and has shown no signs of stopping.

Highly addictive, I plowed through the daunting American Elf Volume 1: James Kochalka’s Collected Sketchbook Diaries in about 2 days, that’s 496 pages of pure comic strip goodness! The 2nd collection came out just last month and while it is considerably smaller (192 pages), it is no less entrancing. To get a taste of American Elf, check out Kochalka’s web site, there you can view the cartoon for that day. If you subscribe to the site (a mere $1.95 per month) you’ll be given access to the archives of past comic strips.

Although I highly recommend picking up the collected volumes, as his comics en masse are where they truly shine. Also available on his web site is links to where you can buy his music, books and other merchandise.

Support the Elf Movement today!
(this story is reprinted from FOG! where it originally appeared, as well as my blog)


Knight Mice and Lawn Chairs.

This, from MIKE OEMING's Newsletter:

Solicitations are out for September and Mice Templar is finally ready for order! We were treated very well by Image and Diamond...See pages 6, 19, 145, 146 and 147

The order number is JUL071921.
Help us out the best you can by pre-ordering the book, at least make sure you get your retailer to! We really need your support on this one to make it work, its an on-going series so if its going to be on-going, we need that fan base to grow! Thank you guys so much for all the support!

The next two years or so are all about Powers and Mice Templar!

MICE TEMPLAR SHIRTS :Mice Templar : CafePress.com



Hello Zombie lovers, one and all!

Here is a link to our First Annual Founding Fathers Zombie Walk flyer, which happens next Tuesday, July 3rd. Zombies meet at Ben Franklin's grave, 5th and Arch, 8PM, and work their way to Liberty Lands Park in Northern Liberties, for a free screening or HORROR OF PARTY BEACH aka Invasion Of The Zombies... on 16mm!

Please do forward this to friends... the more the scarier!
The Constitution say that our government guarantees all Zombies the right to peaceably assemble and petition the government for their brains and then eat them... or something to that effect!

Above is just for Filthadelphia Natives and the surrounding areas, but this is now the 3rd (correct me if I'm wrong) Zombie-related event here in Philly - believe me when I say I am proud of our Zombie population!!!

Now, can someone loan me a lawn chair?? Happy Independence Day!