True Blood – the novel vs the show

There I was, surfing the paperback shelves of my former ‘go-to’ book store, the Atwater Library Book Store. I was on the phone with an associate editor of mine and I joked about buying the Sookie Stackhouse mystery book. It was all of 25 or 50c. She warned me against it, but insanity won out.

I’m a big fan of the show (or at least collected seasons of the show, we all know the writing and the coin-toss that is the script changes got funky sometimes). 

Is the book better than the show?

In an answer—no. Sorta. But. no.


The energy of the show, the charisma of the cast, and the damn right sexiness of it all is almost entirely missing from the book.  

Jason is like creepy as fuck in the book. Do the math on the age—then figure out the ‘football’ playing and ‘college’.

Lafayette is umm…not really Lafayette. It seems the only character that was consistently cool in the show is just about absent in the first book.

Rene — well, let’s just say Rene is CAF like Jason, too. 

The book does, however, have merit.

No Tara. That’s right, the first book is completely Tara-less. For that alone, I can give the book 3 1/2 fangs.

Smash—but only if on sale.

If you are wondering as I did, so many winters ago—is this book worth buying/reading? The answer is ‘yes, but only if you want to fill that True Blood world in a bit more and only if it’s on sale (or free).

If you feel like buying it full price, well—you won’t get what you pay for.

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Horror – Games, Movies, and Comics?! (Oh my!)

There is no secret about how big of a horror fan I am. I loved it since a kid and still look forward to my next scare (that isn’t cholesterol related). This site is going through a bit of a revamp. At first, I thought maybe I would use this for RBY overflow but I want to keep ‘personal and business’ separated (the irony here is the legal business name is Czykmate and RBY is the imprint).

So, starting in July a few changes are coming.  Most of the site is getting nuked and we will have a few sections for horror junkies like me. I’m a big pen and paper nerd, so expect some of that goodness, too.  Everything that is horror, really.  As a cool treat,  be on the lookout for guest writers. These folks are personally vetted horror buffs and I’m glad to be in a position to give them their shot (with pay!)

Until then….


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Bazowie! the new venture from SexyFandom

I love Bazowie! That’s right, I said it.  Bazowie! is the ultimate fandom magazine brought to you by the ultimate fandom website  What Molly Case and crew brought to the printed pages of their first issue is nothing short of amazing. It is everything we’ve always loved about SexyFandom (the art, the writing, the community of cool) but something live and tangible for your filthy little eyes and hands.

IN this issue we have some great interviews and cultural happenings.  I mean we’re talking about Masuimi Max, RazorCandi, Vaughn Belak, Anastassia Bear, and WindID_Lust–PLUS Comic Cons, fashion (wtb R2D2 heels), television, and movies.  It is SexyFandom in a bottle (or more accurately, in kick-ass magazine form).  There are a lot of great voices here and each of them shines through as one collective Sexy Fandom family.

Not only is the writing engaging and fun, but the photography! Oh, the photography! Masuimi Max’s Morat alongside BlueBlood’s Amelia G and Forest Black?  PLUS art by Vaughn Belak and RazorCandi? You’ve got to be kidding me. That’s like putting Michael Jordan with Larry Bird on the 88 Lakers,  which was pretty much what the Dream Team Olympics were about…for those who keep score at home.  Does that make Jim Phoenix Sir Charles?  *shudder*   The point is there is plenty to keep all of your visual and mental sensories going and flowing in this high quality ‘sexyfandom in print’.

The price is pretty damn right, too.  If you love fandom, sexy or otherwise, you need to do yourself a favour and pick up an issue of Bazowie! I put my money where my mouth is (hard to eat, I am sure…bloody Loonies) and picked up a digital and print version of this. I must say no matter how good the digital version looks, the print is flawless.  Such a great quality design and hats off to the entire team.

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Phantasm IV – The return of the return of the Tall Man

I love horror and I love Shudder. Shudder is what my Netflix queue should be and always failed. It is a cheap streaming alternative to ripping off your favorite movies by illegally downloading them and paying the artists jack. Shudder brings so much horror joy to us that if you are still stealing content because ‘you can’t afford’ it then you really need to get off the internet.

This time I heated up Phantasm IV: Oblivion aka “There was a 3rd movie?”. The Tall Man does not disappoint. I think he is the scariest mofo to ever stomp ass on an ice cream man and I know he’s featured in a few of my nightmares as a kid. Angus Scrimm plays the role perfectly. He goes to show that not everyone has to be Freddie to be scary in the 80s. Subtlety kills and this guy slays them all. But not even the Tall Man could escape 2016–the accursed year that took everyone worth staying alive for…

Let’s sit back and remember one old man whose balls you most definitely didn’t want to touch (wait…)

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Hellbenders – the movie needs to be a Netflix series

Quick pick for this month after a long absence. Hellbenders is a horror-comedy about a group of Holy people with the sacred mission to take down the forces of evil by any means necessary. The concept here is rather brilliant–only a sinner can truly take the devil back to hell. This group of misfits just might be humanity’s last (and worst) hope to stop the total annihilation of the world.

As my first movie on Shudder, this was a great find. The acting, for the most part, is pretty decent. The premise (as already stated) is brilliant. The stopper here is the writing. The gags sometimes seemed force and there are parts that were best left on the cutting room floor of the writer’s room. With all that said, I stand by my statement–this would make a great Netflix (or Stars) series.

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Conjuring 2 – Why horror movies exist

Long time no see. I’ve been busy doing that ‘review for pay’ job I’m a bit fond of, but it’s back to my own review for a quick look at Conjuring 2. Conjuring 2 is the movie The Witch should have been but drastically wasn’t. It is the ‘if you believe, you will be scared and probably have to research most of this on the way home–with the lights on’ type of movie. Hell, even if you aren’t a believer in the after-life, this movie is packed with ‘scares’ that work. The setups are patient things and my hats off to James Wan on this. The payoffs for the ‘monster scares’ are rather sinister in parts.

At one point, I honestly didn’t know who was screaming–the girls on the screen or the ones in the row ahead of me.  That is how good this movie is.  I did not see it in 3D. I do not know if a 3D version exists, but if it does–you better bet your ass I’ll be in on it.

If you haven’t seen the ‘rebirth of real horror’ (aka Conjuring)–it’s okay (no it isn’t! GO OUT AND SEE IT NOW!).  You don’t need to see the first one to enjoy the sequel. Oh, and speaking of sequels I have it from this website that the Nun is getting a treatment of her own. Oh mama…

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The Witch is awesome…unless you wanted horror

Before my almost non-existent horror video blogs are boycotted, let me start out by saying, “I like The Witch”. I think it was well done. I think the writing and the acting and everything in between was well done. It works brilliantly as a period piece exposing the all too familiar push of religion in the US. It works brilliantly as a tale about the way society manipulates women and punishes anyone who dares think her body is her own.  In that aspect, it is rather well done as horror. The horror of “Sweet Jesus, this is still the time we live in.”


Scary in the sense of “I can’t sleep at night/What was that? Fuck you, cat! Gave me a heart attack!”? No. It just isn’t horror in that sense. It isn’t. Unless you were traumatized by a cult (or any religion) and/or had a really bad experience at a petting farm, well, it won’t be scary to you. The BEST line I have seen describing this movie comes from  The review by Rich Smith was pretty spot on, but the Comment by Michael Crowl is priceless.

“I’m glad she escaped her horrifying family. She’s happy now.” That’s what hit me like a bucket of blood-milk as I walked home from the theater.
You’re both wrong. The Witch is basically Sixteen Candles with a better ending and more goats.” – Michael Crowl

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The #VaticanTapes – a movie that wasn’t

I think it was just a brief moment ago that I wrote about this killer zombie movie from down under. I said zombie genre was the bestest in the whole wide world–except, of course, for possession films. The Vatican Tapes taunted me at my local dvd store (no longer local, boo!) for some time before I broke down and rented it for 99 Canadian cents (that’s like 3 pennies and a Hail Mary for you US peeps). At first I thought I had quite the bargain. The acting–solid. The special effects–nothing to cry about. The concept? A young woman becoming the Anti-Christ while a Vatican team rushes to save her and the world? It’s been done, but the story was engaging.

Then the thing ended.

Ever see a movie that has a lot of promise from cover art to 9/10s of the film done only to completely drop the ball at the end? If not, try watching The Vatican Tapes because that’s exactly what this film did. The fault is 100% directly with the writers. I don’t like to push ‘how to’ books, but fucking hell, someone buy these guys Save the Cat. They followed Blake Snyder’s beat sheets almost perfectly, you know, until they stopped their movie 10 minutes shy. (When I say 10 minutes shy, I literally mean this. The dvd said 91 minutes for the movie. The credit sheet started at 81 minutes. I fast-forwarded through 10 minutes of credits to see if the real ending was anywhere. Nope–just 10 minutes of credits.)

At least I have Age of Ultron (hey, MARVEL, where the heck is my digital copy you promised me?!) to wash this disappointing movie away.


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Zombie Down Under – Wyrmwood: Road of the Dead

Zombie movies. How I love them. I seriously think the only movie genre that can trump a zombie movie is the possession genre. I haven’t seen anything worth mentioning on the possession end, but darn if I didn’t find a gem on US Netflix. It’s called Wyrmwood: Road of the Dead and it’s a sleeper. I am shocked at how little I’ve heard about this (apparently) award-winning film. Out from the land down under (where beer does flow and men chunder, or so I’ve been told and choose to believe), this gem is what Mad Max should have been (I can’t be the only one to think that the claims of “Furiosa” as a feminist role model is laughable, right?).

The movie is dark. It’s funny. It’s a bit gory (not too much blood, really). It even has a boomerang in it. I mean, need I say more?

Go. Go to Netflix US now and plop yourself down for an hour or two. Play a bit of Men Without Hats or Men at Work, or just have it bloody raining men (hallelujah!). Either way, just press play.

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Inner Demons – #Netflix US gem

I’m back in Canada for a bit and that means my VPN is stuck on Netflix US.  I’m not sure why Netflix Canada has such a poor selection of horror (or even non-horror…).  One great gem that is now trending is Inner Demons.  Inner Demons is a low budget indy film that, although given low star ratings, is actually damn good.

The premise is simple:  A formerly ‘good girl’ turns to drugs to suppress the demon trying to control her body. The writing and acting are both rather strong through most of the movie.  The ending (almost) works well.  I won’t give spoilers away, but this is one of the few ‘let’s do a mock reality show’ films that I actually watched to the finish.  If you are looking for 30000 scares a second then pass this one by, but if you want a horror film that spins from the newspaper reality, then this is your movie.



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