Categories
Married Geek Couple

Barb Approves of More Stuff!

Look, it’s more stuff of which Barb approves! (And I, Park, do, too!)

Let Sleeping Corpses Lie (1974) (also known as The Living Dead at Manchester Morgue

I am not usually a fan of zombie films. They bore me. All zombie films have the same plot: zombies eat a bunch of people, humanity is screwed, the end. 

Yes, there are exceptions. I love the original Night of the Living Dead, Hammer Studios’ Plague of the Zombies, and the obscure radio production of a Halloween one-off called “The Peoria Plague.” But unless a zombie film has something different to offer me like the Blind Dead films or, I just have no interest in the walking-dead-type films.

So, I was surprised how deeply affected I was by Let Sleeping Corpses Lie. It had such a stupid title, just for a start. But Kill Baby Kill has a silly title, and I like that film, so, what the heck, I decided to poke those sleeping corpses with a stick to see what gives.

Categories
Married Geek Couple

Barb Approves of Stuff!

My husband Park and I spend a lot of time reading, listening to music, and watching movies, old TV shows, etc.

We’re also pretty picky about what we like.

So, I thought I’d make a list of some stuff I (and he) do approve of!

–“The Water Ghost of Harrowby Hall” (read by Jonathan Frid)

I’m putting this up at the top of this list front for my fellow Dark Shadows fans! My husband and I are huge fans of the old supernatural soap opera Dark Shadows, and the lead vampire actor, Jonathan Frid, had such a compelling voice! So listening to him read this funny ghost story about how to outwit a ghost that makes rooms and people wet with water, is a minor treasure and a major pleasure for me.

–“The Erl King” by John Connolly

“The Erl King” is a scary poem about a father and son riding on a horse at night. The son starts hearing the voice of the “Erl King,” who is the king of the fairies. The Erl King wants to drag the son away to his fairy kingdom…

Categories
Married Geek Couple

Married Geek Couple #6: Watching the Detectives

Park: So recently– and funnily enough this had never come up before– you explained to me that the first adult books you read were mystery stories, and then I suppose entire mystery novels, yes? So is that how you got into Dorothy L. Sayers?

Barb:  As a child, I hated most children’s books.  Only Dorp Dead, The Pushcart War, and The Egypt Game appealed to me.  I hated kids’ mysteries where kids foiled jewel robberies, bank heists, found stolen loot, and so on.  See, I knew that kids would never do such things, so I couldn’t suspend my disbelief…

Categories
Married Geek Couple

Married Geek Couple #5: Barb’s Turn

Barb’s Turn! Finally, I ask Barb some questions instead of the other way around!

Park: Okay, questions-for-Barb starts now! Favorite Actor?

Barb: OOOH, tough one. I really love Van Heflin, the old Hollywood star. He’s so tough yet so gentle. And I love Robert Ryan, as he has a “don’t mess with me, you’ll regret it” vibe. I don’t like a lot of modern actors. I love Tom Holland, but I don’t think Hollywood knows what to do with him, post-Spider-Man. Same goes with the other two modern actors I like, Tom Hiddleston and Ryan Reynolds. Of course, Ryan Reynolds doesn’t have a thing to worry about, as he’s a savvy business man. But Hiddleston needs to find some post-Loki roles. Maybe he should go back to Shakespeare.

Park: Favorite ACTRESS?

Categories
Married Geek Couple

Married Geek Couple #4: TV and Movies, Disney and Marvel  

Still my (Park’s) turn to answer questions from Barb! Today, Barb mostly asks about Disney and Marvel stuff.

Barb: What’s your favorite old-school live action Disney film?

Park: Oh dang… Tron counts, right?

Barb: I think that my favorite might be Pollyanna, because it’s a problem-solving film.  One perky kid can change the world.

Barb: Damned right, Tron counts!!!!

Barb: So, Tron?  Back when I met you, you were the only other person I knew who understood what a great film Tron was.

Categories
Married Geek Couple

WE NEED TO TALK ABOUT DARK SHADOWS (Part THREE): The Dark Shadows FAQ

It’s the Dark Shadows Frequently Asked Questions… list!

–WHY ARE SOME EPISODES IN BLACK AND WHITE? At first, it’s because they hadn’t started using color cameras yet. But then, some episodes can still only be watched by us in this century because they didn’t always save all the tapes of the color episodes—but they did save (almost) all of the black-and-white recordings of the shows. The easiest way to explain it is that they broadcast the show in color (once that started) on most stations. But some stations didn’t show Dark Shadows at the same time—for just one example, California is three hours behind New York (where the show was made) time-zone wise. So some stations would show a black-and-white recording of the show (oh well—not everyone had color televisions yet, so they’d hardly notice). So when no one saved a color copy of an episode, modern Dark Shadows viewers watch the black-and-white copy.

–“I HATE X CHARACTER—BECAUSE X CHARACTER IS SO MEAN//ANNOYING! WHEN WILL THEY GO AWAY?!?” This is a complex question because the answer depends on who we’re talking about. Let’s hit the most common characters that people say this about.

Categories
Married Geek Couple

WE NEED TO TALK ABOUT DARK SHADOWS (Part TWO): How To Watch Dark Shadows

Okay so: Dark Shadows. The 1966-1971 gothic soap opera. Maybe you are thinking about watching it.

Here’s some stuff you need to know.

You have two options:

1. Start at the very beginning. NOT RECOMMENDED UNLESS YOU ARE INTO 1960s SOAP OPERAS IN THE FIRST PLACE. OR unless you are not used to scary/supernatural stories in the first place. If you are not used to scary/supernatural stories, then yeah, maybe you di want to start with episode 1. (But if either of those don’t sound like you, then come back and watch the first 209 episodes later, after you’re totally hooked.)

2. RECOMMENDED for some people : You might want to consider starting with the vampire. The vampire is where practically everyone, at the time, started paying attention.

Categories
Married Geek Couple

WE NEED TO TALK ABOUT DARK SHADOWS (Part One)

Okay, Barb and I have been talking about ourselves, but now we need to talk about Dark Shadows.

NO, not the 2012 Tim Burton movie. We try not to talk about that (although if it attracted some new fans to the real Dark Shadows— and it did– then fine, whatever). No, I’m talking about the TV show it was based on, from 1966 to 1971, the world’s first gothic daytime TV soap opera, Dark Shadows.

Barb got me into Dark Shadows.

Barb loves Dark Shadows. And, now that she got me into it some years ago, so do I.

When I was growing up, I saw ONE episode of Dark Shadows on TV– as a re-run. It was during what’s called The Leviathan Storyline, which happens to be the one where a Lovecraftian monster dude not entirely unlike Lovecraft’s story “The Dunwich Horror” –but who can turn himself into a normal human-lookin’ dude as long as he can get back to a specially-prepared saferoom back at his lair place– is trying (reluctantly) to help an ancient evil cult take over the world (starting with the New England town of Collinsport).

Categories
Married Geek Couple

Married Geek Couple #3: Growing Up

This installment of Married Geek Couple is in great part about things we grew up with, one way or another…

Barb: You and I share a love of children’s literature. How did you get into the “Great Brain” books?

Park: I think the Great Brain books were something I discovered on a shelf in a classroom. Maybe third grade? Or… Maybe another Reading Is Fundamental giveaway.

Barb: One of my fave jokes from The Simpsons mentions that Lisa reads The Great Brain books. One of us! One of us! We accept you! One of us!

Barb: Next question: How’d you get into The Rocky Horror Picture Show?

Categories
Married Geek Couple

Married Geek Couple #2: Barb Interviews Park Some More

Barb Says:

It’s that time again.

Time to study phrenology?

Time to get your teeth cleaned?

Time to Spin the Wheel of Morality?

No!  It’s time to interview my husband again!

Barb (to Park): Last time, I asked you about kids’ books. This time, it’s time to talk about other Geek culture subjects:

Barb: What were your favorite cartoons as a kid, and why?

Park: Spider-Man and his Amazing Friends, because it actually was pretty well-written and acted dialogue-wise, and had lots of guest-stars from the rest of the Marvel Universe.

Battle of the Planets, because anime and style.

–Warner Brothers cartoons, because hilarious.

Barb: I got you a “Battle of the Planets” action figure set (still in box) and a t-shirt you wore until it was just threads.