Friday, October 30, 2009

Thursday, October 29, 2009

G-FAN Magazine # 81 "No Tricks, Just Treats"

A blog posting by Brett Homenick led me back to issue #81 of G-FAN, and I am glad it did. This may have been the second issue I received via subscription, and it was a fun one to revisit.
Things get off to a solid start with "Singing for the Smog Monster," Homenick's interview with Adryan Russ, the co-writer and singer of "Save the Earth." Her memories of writing and recording the song are vivid, and she seemed genuinely pleased to have been contacted about it. That is followed by Homenick's discussion with Don Frye of Godzilla: Final Wars, who wins the reader over with his humility (he describes himself as "a giraffe on roller skates on an ice pond" in relation to other actors). Mike Bogue salutes It Came from Beneath the Sea, noting that Eiji Tsuburaya seemed to have a thing for octopi.
"Godzilla's Most Embarrasing Moments" comes next. Ken Bockelman does a fine job pointing out Godzy's goofiest gaffes (led by "The Neverending Drop Kick" from Godzilla vs. Megalon).
Don Jolly's "Growing Up with G-FAN" is a heartfelt tribute to the 'zine itself. Most Godzilla lovers will find it easy to relate to Jolly's enthusiasm and his description of the sometimes solitary nature of G-fandom.
Homenick returns with interviews of George Touliatos and Michael Lennick, both of whom worked on Virus.
Mark Justice's "Shinto Symbolism in Toho's Daikaiju Eiga" helps provide subtext for the films' prevalent images. One minor quibble I have with the article is that it neglects to mention the Christian symbolism especially evident in the Japanese version of Mothra--although that admittedly falls outside its stated scope.
Brett Homenick talks to Godzilla: Final Wars' Jonathan Legg, who shares an amusing anecdote about Don Frye's arm wrestling prowess.
John Le May's "Up From the Depths" is a kaiju-inspired sampling of real-life lake monster reports, drawing on the works of cryptozoologists such as Loren Coleman and Karl Shuker. I am always happy to see such articles in G-FAN, as I think there is a natural cross-over between an enjoyment of giant cinematic monsters and an open-mindedness regarding the potential existence of such creatures in our world.
Mike Bogue's "Alternate Monsterverse" is a testament to his own creativity and imagination, growing up, as he did, with nary a Bandai figure (or even a Shogun Warriors Godzilla) with which to play.
Armand Vaquer contributes an interview with genre historian August Ragone, who talks about the path his Tsuburaya biography took to publication, along with sharing his memories of his first exposures to Godzilla and Ultraman. Vaquer then reviews Ragone's "Eiji Tsuburaya: Master of Monsters," rightly describing it as a "labor of love" and "one of the most important, if not the most important, movie books on Japanese science-fiction to come out in years." I couldn't agree more.
Ragone himself checks in with a remembrance of the life and personality of the multi-talented Jerry Ito. Included is a moving description of Ito's 2004 reunion with Mothra co-star Hiroshi Koizumi.
Brett Homenick presents a conversation with Luciana Paluzzi (the article that sent me back to this issue) and the star of The Green Slime speaks with candor about her surprise at the cult movie's enduring appeal and her experiences during filming.
David McRobie's "The Globe Meter" reviews a variety of treats, such as Ultraman Mebius and the Ultra Brothers and The Host (which gets a thorough and thoughtful review later in the issue).
Armand Vaquer returns with an informative look at the Fukuoka Dome, a 48,000-seat arena that is central to the action in Gamera, Guardian of the Universe. It is nice to know that the issue of "naming rights" is not purely American (the structure is now known as "The Fukuoka Yahoo! Japan Dome)!
Also included is a highly illustrated retrospective of G-FEST XIV, which featured guests Shelley Sweeney and Rhodes Reason, and Steve Agin's traditional toyfest summary.
Issue #81 is highly informative. The spotlight on Ragone's book was especially warranted and was done well. The sheer volume and quality of Brett Homenick's interviews should not be overlooked, either. He seems to be able to bring out the best in those with whom he speaks and presents them in the best possible light. The variety of writing styles, subjects, and visuals (beginning with the ominous cover) makes this issue one that stands up to repeated, satisfying reading.

Countdown to Halloween: Day Twenty-nine


Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Toybox Treasure: American Greetings Godzilla

This is my favorite American Greetings Godzilla ornament. Not only is the screen behind Godzilla lenticular, allowing for a number of images of Godzy's friends and foes, but it also has a great "soundtrack" of monster roars, culminating in the most famous roar of them all. The pose that Godzilla is in is also great fun; he's ready to launch an all-out attack if you don't wish him a Merry Christmas!

Countdown to Halloween: Day Twenty-seven


Monday, October 26, 2009

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Friday, October 23, 2009

Countdown to Halloween: Day Twenty-three--Weirdly Wonderful Book Club

The Richard Gere film The Mothman Prophecies only scratches the surface of the oddities that plagued Point Pleasant, West Virginia (and the surrounding Ohio River Valley) during the original Mothman "flap." John A. Keel tells the whole unnerving story in the book that inspired the film and put Point Pleasant on the paranormal map. Keel writes about his investigation into the Mothman phenomena, which ultimately would include Men in Black, UFOs that responded to flashlight signals, inexplicable technological tampering and, of course, the all-too-real collapse of the Silver Bridge. By any standard, Keel's "The Mothman Prophecies" is a page-turner--it just happens to be a page-turner that will make you want to leave the lights on when you go to bed.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Marvel Comics' "Godzilla" Issue #2 "Seattle Under Siege/Thunder in the Darkness"

Synopsis: Godzilla comes ashore in Seattle, destroying everything in his path. Meanwhile, aboard the S.H.I.E.L.D. helicarrier, Dum Dum Dugan confers with the Takiguchi contingent about the nature of Godzilla, and young Rob Takiguchi reveals himself to be a G-sympathizer. Godzilla approaches Seattle's Space Needle, but is diverted when S.H.I.E.L.D. first blows up the city's power plant (the city council was waiting too long to decide to turn off the grid), then lures the monster away with a chain of flashing lights (in a possible homage to Godzilla Raids Again). S.H.I.E.L.D.'s block-busters knock Godzilla into the ocean, and he swims away.

High Point: It's not a good sign when the best part of the story is another flashback--this time showing Godzilla battling non-Toho 'kaiju' and crushing Tokyo. The inclusion of the Diet Building is a nice touch, but the rest of that particular panel is marred by a very unusual perspective that makes it appear that Godzilla has tripped and is crawling along on all fours. Weird.

Low Point: Godzilla gets "bonked" off a cliff by giant S.H.I.E.L.D. sling-shot blocks. Yes, you read that right.

"Hmmm" Moment: The cover shows Godzilla effortlessly gnawing on the Space Needle, which is approximately 180 meters tall, making Marvel G almost twice as big as his largest Toho screen incarnation. Another "hmmm": the cover scene never takes place in the story (the Big G never snaps the Space Needle in two; it is clearly still intact when he is mesmerized by the S.H.I.E.L.D. light show).

Bottom Line: For the second time in two issues, S.H.I.E.L.D. battles Godzilla to a draw--not exactly an exciting pattern. A few interesting tidbits emerge (Tony Stark is named as a key player in the construction of the secret anti-G weapon; Rob Takiguchi claims (in his thoughts) to "understand Godzilla"), but they are not enough to add momentum to the plot. If anything, "Seattle Under Siege" seems like the second half of the first issue (or maybe issue #1.5) because nothing different really happens.

Countdown to Halloween: Day Twenty-two--Weirdly Wonderful Book Club

Loren Coleman's "Mysterious America" is, simply put, a Fortean classic. There's a little bit of everything here: cryptozoology; modern folklore and urban legend; an insightful study of American place names; and a host of incidents that defy easy classification. And if you have something against clowns, you will really be uncomfortable with them after reading the "Phantom Clown" chapter. All the while, Coleman reminds us that episodes of high strangeness can and do happen right in our own backyards. If you only read one "speculation" book, make it "Mysterious America."

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Countdown to Halloween: Day Twenty-one--Weirdly Wonderful Book Club

Like most speculative non-fiction, Kelleher and Knapp's "Hunt For the Skinwalker" raises more questions than it answers. But oh, what creepy questions they are. Just what was going on at "Skinwalker Ranch" in Utah in the mid-to-late 90s will probably never be explained, but it appeared to involve five-foot-tall ravenous wolves; glowing orbs; UFOs of nearly every description (including classic saucers, sombrero-shaped craft, triangles and RV-sized vehicles gliding silently through the air); Native American folklore; cattle mutilation; Bigfoot; dimensional "tunnels"; and highly strange tricksterism, such as some unknown force shoving four prize-winning bulls inside a tiny trailer. "Hunt For the Skinwalker" is engrossing, well-written, and not for the easily unsettled.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Marvel Comics' "Godzilla" Issue #1 "The Coming"

Andy and I are reading our way through Marvel's "Godzilla: King of the Monsters" Essentials Collection, and I thought it would be fun to chart our progress here. For more on this eclectic series, see G-FAN issues #53 and #54 which feature in-depth interviews with writer Doug Moench and artist Herb Trimpe and more analysis.

"The Coming" begins with Godzilla laying waste to the Alaskan Pipeline. S.H.I.E.L.D. (Supreme Headquarters International Espionage Law Enforcement Division), commanded by agent "Dum Dum" Dugan, arrives to battle the rampaging creature. Meanwhile, Nick Fury is shuttling Dr. Yuriko Takiguchi, his assistant Tamara Hashioka, and his grandson Rob to a rendezvous with the S.H.I.E.L.D. helicarrier, as the doctor has plans for a secret anti-G weapon. S.H.I.E.L.D. zaps Godzilla with a laser cannon, which only succeeds in infuriating the monster, and soon he has destroyed both cannon and oil camp with his radioactive fire. Godzilla lumbers away as Dum Dum is introduced to Dr. Takiguchi and crew.

High Point: The flashback sequence that "explains" Godzilla's origins. The "Destruction of Japan" panel offers the most realistic Godzilla in the issue--tellingly, it is a view of Godzy's backside.

Low Point: A toss-up between Godzilla using the Alaskan Pipeline as a giant whip and S.H.I.E.L.D.'s Operation Mosquito, which is as effective (and silly) as it sounds.

"Hmmm" Moment: Godzilla's "birth year" is reported in flashback as 1956. Evidently this is based on the release of the Americanized "Godzilla: King of the Monsters" and not the original Japanese "Godzilla" which premiered in 1954.

Bottom Line: Godzilla gets off to a decent (if abrupt) start, as long as one accepts that this story takes place in the "Marvel universe."

Countdown to Halloween: Day Twenty--Weirdly Wonderful Book Club

"Bigfoot" by B. Ann Slate and Alan Berry is one of the most bizarre studies of the subject ever written, and that's saying something. It eschews Bigfoot cliches and over-reported incidents in favor of exceedingly strange original encounters, some of which directly involve co-author Alan Berry. Published in 1976, there is an "anything goes" quality to this book: nothing is too odd to be included, whether it is a psychic conversation with Sasquatch, Bigfoot-as-UFO-occupant speculation, reports of a twelve-foot-tall (!) truck-chasing monster, suspicious "men in black" appearances at cabin doors or subterranean "factory sounds" in the Sierra Nevadas. Entertaining and often genuinely eerie, "Bigfoot" is a unique entry in the annals of Sasquatch literature.

Monday, October 19, 2009

Budding Kaiju Artist Presents: (Not) Orga!


Andy created his latest kaiju artwork waiting for our Steak and Shake order to arrive. He is insistent that this drawing does NOT depict Orga from Godzilla 2000 (perhaps he is worried about legal ramifications!). So as not to offend the artist, I present to you this drawing which in no way, shape or form is meant to represent G2K's Orga, and I'm sure you see no resemblance whatsoever.

Countdown to Halloween: Day Nineteen


Sunday, October 18, 2009

Countdown to Halloween: Day Eighteen


Mount Frightmore--Lake FarmPark

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Friday, October 16, 2009

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Now Playing: Prince of Space (MST3K Edition)

For various reasons, the Mike Nelson years of Mystery Science Theater 3000 are "lost years" for me, so it was with some surprise that I discovered the film Prince of Space in one of MST3K's DVD sets. It turned out to be pretty doggone enjoyable, both on its own terms and in the MST3K context.

According to the Internet Movie Database, Prince of Space was released in 1959 by Toei studio, orginally as a mini-serial and then as an edited one-shot version in the U.S. The story centers around the Prince of Space defending Earth from the Phantom of Krankor. The Prince of Space disguises himself as a shoe-shine boy who takes care of children in his spare time and evidently is teaching them the trade! The Phantom of Krankor is one of the most hilarious villains I have ever seen, with an appropriately flamboyant "heh-heh-heh-heh" chortle that goes way over the top. Then there's the giant that guards the Krankor base...you really need to see this movie. The production values are relatively high and the print the Best Brains guys got their hands on is a beauty.

The MST3K "layer" is fun too--although towards the beginning, even they seem to be caught up in the on-screen shenanigans, to the extent that no riffing takes place for long stretches. The host segments are all take-offs on "worm-hole" sci-fi alternate realities. One of them features a brain-twisting, out-of-order conversation; in another, Mike Nelson becomes a ventriloquist-dummy-sized robot version of himself (this bit is particularly amusing, as the robot Mike joins the 'bots in the theater for a segment); and in yet another, Mike, Crow, and Tom Servo are actually filmed outside in the woods somewhere, which, to the long-time fan, is a somewhat jarring image!

The jokes are enjoyable--the film itself lobs softball after softball across the plate for the guys to hit. My laugh-out-loud moment came when the camera panned across a Japanese cityscape accompanied by the comment: "Ah, a rare Godzilla-free day." Mike and company also make passing reference to Gamera and their infamous Gamera song.

Prince of Space is worth a watch, whether you go with the MST version or not. Be forewarned, however, you will not soon forget the Phantom of Krankor's evil laugh (or his costume)!

Countdown to Halloween: Day Fifteen

Graveyard Ann


Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Musings on Megalon


I refuse to apologize for my affection for Godzilla vs. Megalon. At the time of its release, I was part of the demographic category for which this kooky movie was intended. I have happy, nostalgic memories attached to it: seeing it in the theater with my dad; watching the infamous "Belushi Broadcast," believing (as only a child can) that this meant Godzilla had "made it" in America.

To this day, there's just a lot I enjoy in Megalon, from Jet Jaguar and his "punch-punch-punch" song, to Robert Dunham's "fabulous" Seatopian Ruler and even the Megarogoji suit. (Reviled by many, this is the Godzilla that I could draw well as a kid, and these days, its "cutesy" features remind me of my cat. No, really.)

While watching Godzilla vs. Megalon recently, I was once again struck by its whacked-out charms, but for some reason I was more aware of its deficiencies. Most obvious was the cost-saving empty battleground near the movie's end and the almost total reliance on stock footage for scenes of urban destruction. At one point Gigan's claw is shown batting planes out of the air, even though Megalon is supposed to be the monster antagonist. That's just sloppy and disappointing. At least the footage from War of the Gargantuas is incorporated with a smidge more creativity, as Megalon appears to hop behind a heretofore unglimpsed stand of trees.
Another thing that seemed more apparent than usual was just how cartoonish the monster action (and interaction) is in this film. Clearly, Godzilla vs. Megalon was never meant to be taken seriously--as if the G-sized drop kicks did not remove all doubt. The Godzilla that ends up shaking Jet Jaguar's hand while shrieking his thanks is so far removed from the nightmare creature of 1954 as to seem like an entirely different character. He is, and yet...he's isn't--and that's one of the things that makes Godzilla "Godzilla." As a character he has not just survived re-invention, but the ambiguity created by his personality changes makes him complex, even vaguely human. In other words, across the series, he's not just one "thing." Fifity years of Godzilla as avenging, unstoppable destroyer probably wouldn't have happened, because of the predictability factor. Paradoxically, this ridiculous incarnation of Godzilla may have helped extend his longevity. The critic might respond, "At what price?" I'll admit I don't have a sound answer to such a question.
As fond as I am of Godzilla vs. Megalon, I am prepared to say that it is virtually impossible to defend it as a "good movie" in objective terms. Subjectively, though, I still respond to this crazy tale with childlike enthusiasm and a great big Jet Jaguar grin, and I doubt that will ever change.

Countdown to Halloween: Day Thirteen


Monday, October 12, 2009

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Countdown to Halloween: Day Eleven


Toybox Treasure: Yuji Sakai Godzilla 54


The detail on these mini-dioramas by renowned sculptor Yuji Sakai is simply amazing. Keep in mind these are no more than three inches tall. The G-suit is perfect; the perspective of the Diet Building is excellent; even the black and white tag adds to the effect.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Countdown to Halloween: Day Ten--Spooky Shirt Week

Halloween Wrap Group
Music You Can Really Dig

Friday, October 9, 2009

G-FAN Magazine # 89 "Fans Fan the Flame"

Issue 89 of G-FAN finds kaiju fandom alive and well, despite the absence of Godzilla from movie theaters for the foreseeable future. The sensational cover invites careful inspection and is a great inducement to open the magazine and explore. The issue begins with a summary of G-FEST 16, which did not seem to suffer any ill effects from the current economic climate. The attendance of Kenji Sahara no doubt had much to do with the strong showing. It was wonderful to re-live the event through the summary article and the abundance of photographs.

Kenji Shimomura begins the features with "Japan Under Star Wars Fever," examining the Star Wars variants that beat the blockbuster to the screen, as well as those that trailed behind, such as War in Space and Message From Space. Mr. Shimomura reveals how the ultimate box office failure of homegrown Japanese space adventures led to the rise of animated features, resulting in the explosive growth of anime.

Brett Homenick interviews Kazuaki Kiriya, director of Casshern. I enjoyed Kiriya's stated approach to film making, challenging himself and his crew to make the most of their abilities (and budget).

Retro Reviews appear throughout issue 89, two of which are credited to Mike Bogue. The movies reviewed are The Cosmic Monsters, The Black Scorpion, and The Magic Serpent. Of the three, The Black Scorpion appears to have the most appeal. (I mean, monster scorpions on the move--talk about creepy!)

Brett Homenick and totorom present an interview with the great Horoshi Koizumi, whose answers exude the class and dignity that you might expect from the storied actor.

Allen A. Debus offers his take on the "raptors" from the TriStar Godzilla, correctly identifying the influence of Jurassic Park had on their presence in the movie, and doing so in a rather whimsical way.

Lyle Huckins thoughtfully reviews Big Man Japan, and after reading this article, I must say I'm pretty ambivalent about seeing the film myself--perhaps if I find it through our library system, I'll give it a whirl.

The G-Mail section is something I'm growing more fond of all the time. Suffice it to say that I never tire of learning how people make meaning of Godzilla in their own lives.

Brett Homenick and totorom return for an interview with Goro Mutsumi, who was the alien leader in the original Mechagodzilla movies, and who (albeit dubbed) utters one of my all-time favorite lines from any Godzilla film: "Mechagodzilla: beat Godzilla to death!" Sadly, it seemed that Mr. Mutsumi did not have many distinct memories from the set of these films, and he even seemed to be disappointed with himself for not being able to remember more.

By contrast, Ulf Otsuki, interviewed by Brett Homenick and Sota Otsuki, provides a wealth of detailed recollection about his work Japanese film and television. Most interesting are his reflections on the TV series Rainbowman, in which he appeared with Akihiko Hirata.

Evan Brehany sits down with Dana Foreman for an absorbing discussion of Foreman's role in the mid-1990's kaiju boom. The conversation goes deep and gets fairly personal, and his insider's perspective makes for compelling reading.

Brett Homenick (busy guy!) speaks with Peggy Lee Brennan, star of Message From Space, and finds the actress to be very open and forthright in sharing her acting experiences in Japan. It sounds like she had fun, but took her craft very seriously!

Four reviews of Monster X Strikes Back: Attack the G8 Summit are presented. Upon close examination, there is not a wide variance in the opinions stated--the reviews seem to complement one another, and raise similar questions independent of each other. To summarize: Is this really the future of kaiju films?

Johnny Astchak shares his list of "Godzilla In Print," an ambitious undertaking in which he methodically identifies where and when Godzilla-related articles have been published.

The next two pieces would be foolish (and impossible) to "review," since I am responsible for them. The first is a look at the two most recent Ultraman theatrical releases; the second is a bit of fan fiction that incorporates a few "tips of the cap" to my surroundings in Northeast Ohio.

Jeff Rebner treats us to dynamic illustrations of kaiju from the Gamera series. Previously mentioned are the many fantastic photos from G-FEST 16; my favorite is a shot of Kenji Sahara at Wrigley Field in Chicago--he looks genuinely pleased to be there.

The G-FAN Scrapbook is a potpourri of information, including the happy news that there is a new issue of Calling Monster Island available. The issue wraps up with Steve Agin's vinyl-addiction-inducing "All Monster Toys Attack."

Issue 89 is a reflection of where G-Fans are at right now, as we wait and wonder about Godzilla's cinematic fate. The variety of articles included in this issue suggests that as long as Godzilla stays "retired," G-Fans will continue to widen the scope of their interests, which is natural and probably a positive development. Significantly, there is not one in-depth article about a Godzilla movie in this issue. There are interviews with actors who have shared the screen with Godzilla, news about Godzilla, and reviews of Godzilla products, but no features specifically about the Big G himself.

Late 2009 finds Godzilla fans resourcefully fanning the flame of their favorite interest, while wondering if G-fandom has become a purely retrospective pursuit.

Countdown to Halloween: Day Nine--Spooky Shirt Week

Save the Earth! It's Hedorah, the Smog Monster!

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Fantastic Kaiju Books In Production


G-FAN's Armand Vaquer is reporting on his blog that two very exciting books are currently in production.

The first is The G-FAN Travel Guide to Kaiju Japan, which looks to be a joint venture between Armand and J.D. Lees. As the title suggests, it will be an entertaining and information-packed primer for those who wish to see the landmarks featured in tokusatsu films. Hopefully Mr. Vaquer will recap his visit to the Bandai Museum, as well.

The second is the winsomely titled Mushroom Clouds and Mushroom Men: the Fantastic Cinema of Ishiro Honda by Peter H. Brothers. To readers of G-FAN, Mr. Brothers needs no introduction. For the rest of you, his writing has set the standard for serious anlaysis and appreciation of Japanese fantasy cinema. Somebody please correct me if I'm wrong, but I believe this will be the first biography/career survey of Ishiro Honda to appear in the English language.

This is great news for G-readers. For more information go to: http://armandsrancho.blogspot.com/

"A library is not a luxury but one of the necessities of life. -Henry Ward Beecher

Countdown to Halloween: Day Eight--Spooky Shirt Week

Rhythm and Boo's
Fright Night Club

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Fake Monsters of Japan Calendar

Around these parts we are beginning to talk about Christmas wish lists, so I thought the time was right to highlight a really unique gift for the kaiju fan in your life. As you can see, it's called the "Fake Monsters of Japan Parody Calendar," and it is the brainchild of G-FAN publisher J.D. Lees and artist Jolyon Yates.

The calendar traces the "history" of G-Fantis (the official monster of G-FAN), whose career traces an arc remarkably similar to another giant radioactive lizard from Japan. Along with beautiful visual parodies of Godzilla, Godzilla: King of the Monsters, King Kong vs. Godzilla, Destroy All Monsters, Son of Godzilla, and more, the text accompanying each poster offers truly amusing "facts" about G-Fantis' film career. A thorough knowledge of all things Godzilla is rewarded with hilarious send-ups and in-jokes that ultimately serve as a warm salute to the Big G.

In addition to the comedic and artistic elements of the "Fake Monsters" calendar, there is information galore, including birth and death days of kaiju eiga key players, release dates of Godzilla/Toho movies, and brief biographical sketches of the people who worked before and behind the cameras. The dates of the next G-FEST are also provided, for those who like to plan ahead.

"Fake Monsters of Japan" captures the fun of being a kaiju fan. Anyone with more than a passing interest in Godzilla would be happy to find this under the tree this Christmas. How could you go wrong with twelve months of monster-sized smiles?

For ordering information, go to: http://g-fan.com

Countdown to Halloween: Day Seven--Spooky Shirt Week


Jack Skellington
"The Pumpkin King"

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Countdown to Halloween: Day Six--Spooky Shirt Week

Wanted: Frankenstein's Monster
Dead or Alive? Good Question!

Monday, October 5, 2009

G-FAN # 89 Has Arrived!


The latest issue of G-FAN came in Saturday's mail. Thanks to Brett Homenick's blog, I knew what to expect. But I'm still not over the shock of seeing my writing in my favorite magazine.
I submitted three articles over the past several months: a review of the recent Monster X Strikes Back; reviews of the two latest Ultraman theatrical releases; and a bit of fan fiction in which a monster attack (on Cleveland) is reported via twitter.com. To my surprise, all three made it into this issue.
Five months ago I would've never predicted that I would be published in G-FAN. What inspired me was the creativity I saw at G-FEST 16. The seed of what would become the "twitter story" started to grow the last morning of G-FEST, and that opened the floodgates, resulting in two more articles and the birth of this blog. (It may interest you to know that I wrote the "twitter story" on my cell phone, whenever I had time--a large chunk of it was composed in a nursing home, while I was waiting to visit an elderly friend!) Along the way, other G-FAN writers have been very cordial and encouraging with their comments, and I truly appreciate their kindness.
Unlike so many of the great contributors to G-FAN, I have no specialized knowledge of the G-universe or connections to those who have made these wonderful films. I'm just a fan, with a sincere affection for the realms of Japanese sci-fi and fantasy. I hope that the enjoyment I derive from this genre translates into enjoyment on the part of the reader!

Countdown to Halloween: Day Five--Spooky Shirt Week


Andy loves his mummy

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Countdown to Halloween: Day Four

Special Agents Mulder and Scully--Sunday Night TV's No Fun Without You!

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Countdown to Halloween: Day Three

Quasimodo Plush Doll--cathedral not included

Friday, October 2, 2009

Countdown to Halloween: Day Two

Frankenstein's Mug

Kaiju Artwork Week Continues...







Here are some poster I made for Andy's third birthday party. They were very loosely based on movie posters for each film, and were lots of fun to create.
I'm proud to say that three years later they're still on display in his room!

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Countdown to Halloween: Day One

The Creature from the Black Lagoon...what an excellent and atmospheric film!