Monday, October 31, 2011


In Part Six of Zombzany and Major Maniac's Sci-Fi Marathon, Zombzany attempts to find some information on Arnold Schwarzenegger’s horrific acting from the evening’s previous film in his Encyclopedia of Horror, but is unsuccessful. Zombzany’s lack of knowledge on the science fiction film genre is making hosting the Sci-Fi Marathon nearly impossible. Zombzany continues to harass his zombie servant Bill E. Bones as to the location of his Science Fiction Film Encyclopedia and Bill (who hid the book in Part Five) claims he has Sebastian looking for it in every grave. With much distain, Zombzany introduces the next Sci-Fi film of the marathon.

Enjoy Part Six of Zombzany and Major Maniac's Sci-Fi Marathon!

Monday, October 24, 2011


In Part Five of Zombzany and Major Maniac's Sci-Fi Marathon, Zombzany receives another call from Major Maniac. Maniac complains to Zombzany that he is not using “that there nitro orbital zippy script” that he faxed him. Zombzany informs the Major that he will not be using the script that is full of “imbecilic idioms”! Zombzany hangs up the phone and is about to continue the SF Marathon by reading another entry from his Science Fiction Encyclopedia, when he notices that it is missing.

Enjoy Part Five of Zombzany and Major Maniac's Sci-Fi Marathon!

Tuesday, October 18, 2011


Once Upon A Time is a new fantasy series that premiers this Sunday that I originally had no intentions of watching.  Fairy tales held little appeal to me as a child or as an adult. Still, the more I read, heard and saw about this series, the more I became intrigued. Here is the official synopsis on ABC's web site.

"For us, that’s what a fairytale is. It’s that ability to think your life will get better. It’s why you buy a lottery ticket—because if you win you get to tell your boss that you’re quitting and you get to move to Paris or wherever and be who you always wanted to be. And that’s Cinderella, right? One day she’s sweeping up and the next she’s going to the ball. Adam and I just wanted to write about something hopeful that for one hour a week allows one to put everything aside and have that feeling that your dreams just may come true."

- Edward Kitsis, Co-Creator/Executive Producer

Emma Swan's life has been anything but a fairytale. A 28-year-old bail bonds person, she’s been taking care of herself since she was abandoned as a baby. But when Henry — the son she gave up 10 years ago — finds her, everything changes. Henry is desperate for his mom’s help and thinks that Emma is actually the long, lost daughter of Snow White and Prince Charming. Yes, the actual Snow White and Prince Charming. Even stranger, Henry believes that Storybrooke, the sleepy New England town he calls home, is really part of a curse cast by the Evil Queen, freezing fairytale characters in the modern world with no memory of their former selves.

Of course the seen-it-all Emma doesn’t believe a word, but when she gets to Storybrooke, she can’t help sensing that everything’s not quite what it seems. As Henry shows Emma around with the help of his fairytale book, the town, and its inhabitants like Henry’s therapist Archie Hopper and the enigmatic Mr. Gold, seem just strange enough to set off her already suspicious nature. She becomes even more concerned for Henry when she meets his adopted mother, Regina, who he suspects is none other than the Evil Queen herself!

Storybrooke is a place where magic has been forgotten — but is still powerfully close — and happily ever after seems just out of reach. In order to understand where the fairytale world’s former inhabitants came from, and what ultimately led to the Evil Queen’s wrath, you’ll need a glimpse into their previous lives. But it might just turn everything you’ve ever believed about these characters upside-down.

Meanwhile, the epic battle for the future of all worlds, modern and fairytale alike, is about to begin. For good to win, Emma will have to accept her destiny and fight like hell.

"We kept circling back to the idea of fairytales. The very first stories that you hear when you're a kid. They're full of magic and heroics and fear and joy. But we also found fairytales are full of all these unanswered questions. Like why is Grumpy grumpy? Why is Geppetto so lonely that he'd actually carve a little boy out of wood? And did the Evil Queen really try to kill Snow White simply because of vanity? With Once Upon A Time, we set out to explore those questions and not re-tell these stories but attempt to dig beneath what we all know and try to discover something new."

- Adam Horowitz, Co-Creator/Executive Producer

Adam Horowitz and Edward Kitsis conceived the show seven years prior joining the writing staff of Lost,  but wanted to wait until that series was over to focus on this project.

In May 2011, Jane Espenson was added as a co-executive producer and Liz Tigelaar was brought on as a consulting producer.  Damon Lindelof served as a consultant on the show's pilot. Kitsis described Lindelof as his and Horowitz's "godfather", while Horowitz said that Lindelof's "name isn't on the show, but his DNA is in it," and that he will continue to advise the two. They also noted that Disney has allowed them access to their fairy tale characters for use in the series. "They've given us license," Kitsis said. "I could be wrong, but I think this is the first time anyone's shown Snow White with a sword, or pregnant."

Both Horowitz and Kitsis later emphasized that the series will focus more on the characters themselves and won't feature a "complex" storyline, which reportedly was the primary focus. "We don't want this to be a mythology show," said Kitsis. "It's about characters and characters first.

I was not a fan of Lost and gave up on that series' muddled mythology after two seasons. Still, it sounds like Horowitz and Kritsis may have learned from Lost and will not dwell on the mystery over the story and characters on Once Upon A Time. Plus, unlike Lost, Once Upon A Time clearly emphasises at the start that it is a fantasy series. Unlike Lost, which initially had illusions as posing as a Science Fiction series. At least with Once Upon A Time I know what I'm in for right away.

Here is the trailer for Once Upon A Time, which premiers on ABC on October 23 at 8pm.

Saturday, October 15, 2011


In Part Four of Zombzany and Major Maniac's Sci-Fi Marathon, Zombzany is informed by his zombie cameraman Myron that a fan letter has arrived in the post. His loyal, but dimwitted zombie manservant Sebastian delivers the missive and Zombzany proceeds to read the letter. As Zombzany reads the letter, he gradually realizes that it is less-than-complimentary on his previous appearance as a horror host. Zombzany becomes so incensed by the letter’s disparaging commentaries that he tears the letter to shreds and stomps off set in a huff. Zombzany soon returns to the set somewhat embarrassed and dashes off a brief introduction to the next film of the Sci-Fi Marathon.

Enjoy Part Four of Zombzany and Major Maniac's Sci-Fi Marathon!

Tuesday, October 11, 2011



American Movie Classics brings back The Walking Dead with a second season of thirteen episodes. If you missed out on the first season of six episodes, here is the official synopsis from AMC for season one:
Waking up in an empty hospital after weeks in a coma, County Sheriff Rick Grimes (Andrew Lincoln) finds himself utterly alone. The world as he knows it is gone, ravaged by a zombie epidemic. The Walking Dead tells the story of the weeks and months that follow after the apocalypse. Based on Robert Kirkman's hugely successful and popular comic book series, AMC's The Walking Dead is an epic, edge-of-your-seat drama where personal struggles are magnified against a backdrop of moment-to-moment survival. A survivalist story at its core, the series explores how the living are changed by the overwhelming realization that those who survive can be far more dangerous than the mindless walkers roaming the earth. They themselves have become the walking dead.

Here is the official plot tease from AMC for season two:
The Walking Dead is back with its much anticipated second season. When we last left the The Walking Dead, the characters were in the midst of a high-intensity struggle to survive, fleeing the CDC as it burst into flames. In Season 2, they are still on the move, facing more threats and obstacles than ever. Rick leads the group out of Atlanta. On the highway, they are stopped by a threat unlike anything they have seen before. The group searches for someone who has gone missing.
There has been some controversy surrounding the second season. In July 2011, series developer and showrunner Frank Darabont stepped down from his position as showrunner for the series, with believed reasoning he was unable to adjust to the schedule of running a television series. Executive producer Glen Mazzara will be the series' new showrunner.  Darabont's sudden departure further sparked controversy in August when The Hollywood Reporter broke a story revealing that Darabont had in fact been fired due to issues of the show's reduced budget and a strained relationship with AMC executives. Sons of Anarchy creator Kurt Sutter went off on Frank Darabont being fired as showrunner of The Walking Dead on Twitter saying, “Darabont reacted strongly to slashed budgets. He made mistakes, he was fired."  "No creative in town will trust AMC to back up their artists." "I don't know MW, got no beef with him. Just hate that Darabont is being demonized. No one has the balls to tell the truth. MM gutted AMC.” Regardless of the reasons for the changes in season two’s showrunner and purported reduced budget, I as a fan of the show can only hope that the quality of the show remains as high as the first season.

I have only read the first six issues of the Image Comics that The Walking Dead is based on and didn’t enjoy it enough to continue reading it. The Walking Dead is continuing to be published as a monthly black-and-white comic book series. The comic was created by writer Robert Kirkman and artist Tony Moore, who was replaced by Charlie Adlard from issue #7 onward. The comics series has already run to 89 issues, so there is plenty of stories for the AMC TV series to draw on. Readers of the comic have already been warned by producers of the show that the AMC series will not follow the comics series plot exactly.
Season 2 of The Walking Dead premieres with a 90-minute episode on Sun., Oct. 16 at 9/8c. After the first seven episodes air, the series will go on hiatus, and then return on February 12, 2012, where the final six episodes of the season will begin airing.
Enjoy the trailer for The Walking Dead, Season Two!

Monday, October 10, 2011


Part Three of Zombzany and Major Maniac's Sci-Fi Marathon begins with Bill E. Bones sitting in Zombzany's chair, reading from Major Maniac's script that comments on the previous film. Zombzany returns to the set, promptly tears up the script and has his zombie manservant Sebastian escort Bones to the dungeon.

Zombzany decides to host the "Sci-Fi Moron-a-thon" in his own unique style and proceeds to read dryly from his science fiction film tome about the next film. Myron, Zombzany's zombie slave and cameraman, begins falling asleep behind the camera, which causes it to go in and out of focus. Evidently, Sebastian forgot to lock the dungeon cell doors, because Bill E. Bones can clearly be heard behind the camera trying to wake Myron up and keep the camera in focus. The segment ends with Zombzany clearly frustrated at his attempt to enlighten his zombies and pleads with them to "go to black".

Enjoy Part Three of Zombzany and Major Maniac's Sci-Fi Marathon!

Saturday, October 8, 2011


I had not planned on watching American Horror Story,  the new horror program which premiered on the FX cable network this past Wednesday night at 10 pm. My favorite subgenre of horror is supernatural horror. American Horror Story appeared from the teaser trailers to fall within the horror subgenres of ghost stories, creepy houses and psychological horror, all three of which are my least favorite. Ever since Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Angel went off the air, I’ve been getting my weekly supernatural horror TV fix from Supernatural on WB/CW.  The new supernatural horror show that I’ve been looking forward the most is Grimm, which NBC has pushed the premier date back to October 28. Still, as a curious and dedicated genre fan I decided to give the first episode of American Horror Story a try.
After watching American Horror Story on FX HD On Demand and I can honestly say it is the most disturbing horror psychological drama that I have ever seen on Television. The lines that the show draws between reality, imagination and the supernatural are so fine that it really leaves you guessing as to which is which. I can't say that I found the show entertaining, but it is so skillfully done - both visually and contextually - that I find myself intrigued enough with the series set-up that I think I’ll be drawn to watching future episodes.
The basic story is about a married couple from Boston, Ben and Vivien Harmon (Dylan McDermott, Connie Britton), who along with their teenage daughter Violet (Taissa Farmiga), move to Los Angeles to get a “fresh start”. It is revealed that Ben cheated on Vivien after she had a miscarriage and was refusing his attentions both emotionally and physically. Ben, a psychiatrist, saw this old mansion for sale on line for a reduced rate and hoped that he could use one of its many rooms as an office to see patients. Even after finding out that the previous owners of the home committed murder/suicide, the Harmon’s buy and move into the remodeled, but still oddly creepy mansion.
All the Harmon family members have deeply disturbing character flaws. Ben Harmon is frustrated by his wife’s lack of sexual attention and her obvious need to take out her anger and grief out on him. Ben’s practice also puts him into emotional turmoil as well, which adds to his dysfunctional behavior towards his family. Vivian Harmon is not only still suffering from the grief of a lost child, but her distrust of her husband still forces her to distance herself from him. Violet Harmon is also troubled, as she feels aliened by both her parents, to the point that she suffers from self-injurious behavior (SIB).
As if their own problems weren’t enough, the Harmon’s home is invaded by a childlike woman who decrees the death of them all. Her mother, Constance (Jessica Lange) arrives to retrieve her daughter Abby (Jamie Brewer), but dispenses disturbing gossip about the gruesome murders committed in their home. Almost as mysteriously, an older woman named Moira (Frances Conroy) shows up at the mansion and declares herself the mansion’s housekeeper. She goes into great detail as to how she was the one to discover the bodies of the previous owners and that she was the one to clean up the mess. For some inexplicable reason, Moira appears to Ben as a very attractive young women and this causes the sexual tension between he and Vivian to increase even further. The first episode concludes with a bizarre sexual encounter between Vivian and someone who she thinks is her husband and a big reveal at the end.

Even for a cable network show, the language and graphic depiction of sexuality are fairly strong. While FX’s American Horror Story still can’t compete with HBO’s True Blood for its explicit nudity or casual use of the “F” word, it still conveys a true adult tone without resorting (thus far) to True Blood’s gruesome gore and blood. The acting is all finely underplayed in the style of Gothic Horror and as there are no stand outs among the cast, it plays nicely as an ensemble piece. I was somewhat displeased with the use of the character Abby, who obviously suffers from Down’s syndrome, and her treatment by her mother Constance, but I’ll give the show some time to elaborate on their relationship before sicking my metal PC police on them. As there are no strong moral characters in the show, it makes it difficult relate to or empathize with any of them. I’m assuming because this is serialized Television and not a one-off film that at least one of the characters will grow from their horrifying experiences as the program progresses. I’ll continue to watch American Horror Story for as long as they continue to exceed my expectations and not overindulge in the disturbing drama, but further explore the supernatural aspects of the show.

Sunday, October 2, 2011


In Part Two of Zombzany and Major Maniac's Sci-Fi Marathon Zombzany is awaiting the arrival of Major Maniac’s script to introduce the sci-fi movies. It is being received via FAX, which obviously Zombzany knows nothing about, as he is unable to even pronounce the word. The script is handed to him by his faithful zombie servant Sebastian and as Zombzany reads it he realizes that the script is still in Major Maniac’s somewhat eccentric dialect. Zombzany stomps out in a huff and leaves Bill E. Bones to introduce the first film of the sci-fi marathon.

Enjoy Part Two of Zombzany and Major Maniac's Sci-Fi Marathon!