Saturday, 21 April 2012

A-Z Challenge: S is for...Stuck on You Salt & Pepper Shakers

S is for...Stuck on You Salt & Pepper Shakers!

Whilst I'll be the first one to admit that salt and pepper shakers are not the most overtly horror-related items and not something I should be writing about on this blog, after receiving this wonderful pair of pots on my birthday last year I think I'm going to make an exception here! They are from the Nemesis Now, Willow Hall Collection, as part of the 'Stuck on You' range. 

View of the pair when unstuck
The set I own is 'The Monster and His Bride', which are actually labelled as "zombies" on the box. The two of them are independent salt / pepper pots, but by way of a magnet they each have embedded in their mouth they join together, giving the impression of a kiss (awwww... ....?). The details on them - from stitching to nail polish to hair - give the "lovers" great character and a healthy dose of charm, which makes them rather endearing.

The happy couple
As well as being decorative, they are also functional salt and pepper shakers, with holes at the back of their heads. However, I haven't used them for their intended purpose yet and probably never will, so I can't say how well they actually work.

The back of their heads
Nemisis Now also have other horror-themed pairs in the Willow Hall Collection, including vampires, skeletons, witches and coffins. Sadly, they only sell to the trade on their website, so unless you can find these little dears in a shop (physical or virtual), it's not possible to buy them. However, I've seen them dotted around the internet, so I'm sure they'd be simple enough to track down for those who want them!

The images below are from the Stuck on You section at Nemesis Now's website:

'Love at First Bite'
'Love Never Dies'
'Love is Spooky'

This post is part of the A-Z Blogging Challenge

Friday, 20 April 2012

A-Z Challenge: R is for...Rokurokubi

R is for...Rokurokubi
Stills from 'Yôkai hyaku monogatari' (1968)
Rokurokubi are a type of demon in Japanese mythology belonging to the same group as futakuchi onna. They are former humans (usually women) who, either by way of a curse or due to their desires / lifestyles, grow their necks to an extremely long length at night. They are often tricksters who revel in the fear they instill in others. They can kill humans by either scaring them to death or tightly winding their necks around the victim and crushing them. 

Stills from 'Yôkai hyaku monogatari' (1968)
However, some rokurokubi aren't intentionally malevolent, being unaware of their affliction and assuming that they have simply experienced strange dreams, in which they view the world from unusual angles. The experiences of this type of rokurokubi are similar to descriptions of out of body experiences.

This post is part of the A-Z Blogging Challenge

Thursday, 19 April 2012

A-Z Challenge: Q is for...Queen of Blood!

Q is for...Queen of Blood
Sometimes also listed as 'Planet of Blood', 'Queen of Blood' is a 1966 sci-fi horror film directed by Curtis Harrington and starring John Saxon, Judi Meredith, Basil Rathbone, Florence Marly and Dennis Hopper. It's set in 1990, which although is now 22 years in the past, was 34 years in the future at the time of the film's release! 

Florence Marly as the alien in 'Queen of Blood'
Scientists receive a distress call from an alien ship that has crash landed on Mars and a rescue party are sent from Earth to assist them. A sole survivor is rescued and taken on board the ship. However, those on board realise something is wrong when, after unsuccessfully trying to feed the alien, the crew member assigned to guard her is found dead. The alien had eaten blood / flesh after hypnotising him!

They then try to get home in one piece as quickly as they can, before the extraterrestrial vampire has the chance to claim another victim. Will they survive?

The plot alone might not convince you to watch 'Queen of Blood', but how can you resist tag lines like:

"A deathless witch, who devours men, turns the Milky Way into a galaxy of gore!"
"From planets yet unknown comes out of this world HORROR!"
"Hideous beyond belief...with an inhuman craving!"

This post is part of the A-Z Blogging Challenge

Wednesday, 18 April 2012

A-Z Challenge: P is for...Paper Craft and Postcards

P is for...Papercraft and Postcards
Papercraft is a quick, fun and cheap way to make decorations for spooky parties or just to brighten up creepy corners anytime. There's a huge choice of designs - from pumpkins to Nosferatu - and if there's nothing you like you could always try designing one of your own!

Krampus and Nosferatu papercrafts
Skull, La Catrina & Pumpkin

Pumpkin & Skull paper craft patterns from Paper Box World
La Catrina, Nosferatu & Krampus paper craft patterns from Macula


La Catrina & Skull


Krampus stealing a child

Since I also received some monster / alien postcards from a friend, as a bonus, P is also for postcards!

This post is part of the A-Z Blogging Challenge.

Tuesday, 17 April 2012

A-Z Challenge: O is for...Oblina

O is for...Oblina
Oblina was a character in the animated series 'Aaahh! Real Monsters', which centred around a scare school for monsters and its students. The tall, stripy, upside down candy cane Oblina shares a room with the main character, Ickis, and Krum the eyeball holding scarer. 

Oblina and Ickis
A model student at The Monster Academy, Oblina excels at terrifying humans, which makes her a favourite with the usually bad-tempered headmaster, The Gromble. 

This post is part of the A-Z Blogging Challenge.

Monday, 16 April 2012

A-Z Challenge: N is for...Nomskulls

N is for...Nomskulls

Nomskulls, made by Fred, are "kooky creepy" skull-shaped silicone cupcake molds and just happen to be the focus of today's A-Z post! My sister gave me a set of these last September, but I only got around to using them last night. According to the box you can:

"Knock 'em dead with these four stylish silicone skulls. Nomskulls are ready to fill with your favorite grey batter and bake into perfect cupcake craniums. One bite and you'll be head over heels, because there's no doubt about it - this skull bone's connected to the YUM bone!"

For some reason known only to my brain, I forgot that I was making skull-cakes and decided to make the mixture red. The molds are fairly huge but don't make too much batter, as they will overflow if you don't leave the top inch or so free. Of course, it depends entirely on what kind of mix you make and how much you expect it to rise though. 

So that's 3 brain-spills and 1 fancy hairstyle at the back...

However, despite the overflow setbacks, the good thing about the molds being silicone is that any spills come off really easily and the contained cupcake slides out equally as well when you're done.

Unfortunately, the inside of the mold is completely smooth (see photo above) except for the eye imprints, which means that the cakes will come out looking like zombies and aliens unless you decorate them. 

I'm fairly sure that they were intended to be served only inside the molds rather than out of them. It doesn't matter that much though, as the flat tops are there to be adorned with iced brains! 

If you do decide to take them out of the mold, you could try sugar skull-themed icing, zombies with eyeballs popping out, gas maks, Frankenstein's Monster...the list goes on. I think I'll experiment a little and make another post about the decoration when A-Z is over. (It might seem like I've caught up here, but the truth is I'm still missing J, K, L, and M.)

To be May

This post is part of the A-Z Blogging Challenge.

Tuesday, 10 April 2012

A-Z Challenge: I is for...Incubus (1966)

I is for...Incubus (1966)
'Incubus' is a 1966 supernatural horror film directed by Leslie Stevens, the creator of the cult TV show 'The Outer Limits', starring William Shatner and Allyson Ames.

Amael and Kia
The film opens with a beautiful, young Succubi, Kia (Allyson Ames), seducing and drowning a man on a beach. She then complains to her demon sister, Amael (Eloise Hardt), that she is tired of taking tainted souls that are already destined to go to Hell and that she would rather take a pure soul instead. Amael warns her against this, as she believes Kia could fall victim to the mysterious power of "love", but Kia ignores her and goes in search of a pure soul anyway.

She soon meets Marc (William Shatner), a courageous war veteran who has returned home injured and lives with his younger sister, Arndis (Ann Atmar). Marc falls in love with Kia very quickly and she attempts to lure him to his death by offering him her body, but he refuses, saying that he wants things to be "right" and for them to share love, not just physical pleasures. Kia falls asleep and Marc carries her to the local cathedral. When she awakes, the religious imagery and Marc's pure love disorient and repulse her and she runs away.

Kia and Marc

Kia returns to Amael and the two swear revenge against Marc for his "defiling" of Kia with his pure "act of love". The demon sisters then summon an incubus (Milos Milos) - a male equivalent of a succubus -  to get retribution for them and he begins by going to find Marc's sister...

Kia and the Incubus

About the Film:
'Incubus' was shot entirely in the devised language Esperanto and has never been officially dubbed, only subtitled. It was the second feature film ever to be filmed in Esperanto and one of only four that have ever been shot (so far). It was thought to be lost for many years, but a sole surviving copy was found in the  Cinémathèque Française in Paris. However, the French subtitles had been burned onto the film and so when the DVD version was released in 2001, they were blacked-out and the English ones written over the top. This, unfortunately, obscures varying portions of the shots. 

It was also said that the film was "cursed" due to the deaths / suicides / murders of several cast members and people close to them, as well as the divorce of Allyson Ames from Leslie Stevens and the bankruptcy of Stevens' production company.

Is it Any Good?:
The film in general was surprisingly enjoyable and far less over the top than recent supernatural horrors dealing with Hell and the damnation of souls tend to be. I was expecting it to be much more ridiculous, but the story line was solid and believable. Even the finale was quite subtle and left the characters' fates somewhat open-ended. Apparently the pronunciation of the dialogue by the cast was quite poor, but I can't speak / understand Esperanto myself, so I can't comment on that. I suppose if it sounded hilarious, it would be pretty difficult to view it as a horror, but again, I don't know about that aspect of it.

This post is part of the A-Z Blogging Challenge.

Monday, 9 April 2012

A-Z Challenge: H is for...Horror!

H is for horror, the theme of this blog.

Are you horrified that I put so little effort into 'H'?

  This post is part of the A-Z Blogging Challenge.

Saturday, 7 April 2012

A-Z Challenge: G is for...Grim Reaper

G is for...Grim Reaper
Excuse my random drawing C.C;
The Grim Reaper, or Death, is a mythological, supernatural being that collects the souls of the recently deceased and aids their transition to "the other side". Due to this role, he is classified as a psychopomp - beings in various cultures that guide those near death safely to their next destination. He is often depicted as a skeleton in a long, black hooded robe that carries a scythe, which he uses to reap the souls of the dead.

This post is part of the A-Z Blogging Challenge.

Friday, 6 April 2012

A-Z Challenge: F is for...Futakuchi-onna

F is for...Futakuchi-onna
Image by Laura Plansker
Futakuchi-onna (two-mouthed woman) are yōkai - a type of supernatural being / monster from Japanese mythology. They are starving women, or women who eat very small portions, who develop a second mouth at the back of their heads, under their hair. The mouth is fully functional and ravenous, making up for the woman's meager portions by eating twice as much as she needs. If the woman refuses to feed the second mouth, it shrieks insults and obscenities at her until she complies, but can also use the unfortunate victim's hair as tentacles to grab the food for itself.

There are multiple variations on the story of how futakuchi-onna come into being, but many versions feature a young, beautiful woman that marries a miserly man who bullies her into not eating, as he doesn't want to pay for the food. As the starvation sets in, the woman begins to grow a second mouth, often due to some kind of demonic spirit taking hold, and it begins to gorge itself frequently. The new mouth also shouts terrible insults at her husband when he berates the woman for eating again, and he no longer bullies her. However, the mouth continues to scream at her if it is unfed.

Another, less common version of the tale features a woman that lets her step-child die of starvation, while feeding herself and her own children well. The child's spirit possesses the woman, creating the second mouth, and carries out its revenge by eating huge amounts and screeching spiteful insults at her when not fed. 

This post is part of the A-Z Blogging Challenge.

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...