Locke & Key and Horror Comic Books

By Michael J. Miller

Locke & Key 1
Photo Credit – IDW Publishing

This is a special post for a few reasons.  First, as someone who’s loved reading comic books and delighting to the adventures of superheroes since 1986; Joe Hill, Gabriel Rodríguez, and Jay Fotos’ Locke & Key is THE FIRST REAL HORROR COMIC I’ve ever read.  I broke brand new genre ground here and it was…an experience.  Second, this series came highly recommended by Nancy (half of the awesome twosome Nancy & Kathleen who run the wonderfully geektastic comic blog Graphic Novelty²).  Locke & Key is one of Nancy’s all-time favorites and she’s been urging me to read it for ages.  I made a lot of excuses because, well I can be a baby with horror stuff sometimes :).  But I did it!  Lastly, this is special because regular readers will notice Kalie’s been super busy with her PhD work of late so, sadly, that means less time for her to write new content.  I decided to write this guest post for her today in celebration of our three year anniversary.  Yep, three years ago today was the day we first met!  Awwww…let’s mark this special occasion by talking about the gruesome, macabre, and haunting tale of the Locke family shall we?? Continue reading “Locke & Key and Horror Comic Books”

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Locke & Key and Horror Comic Books

A Very Deadpool Nightmare on Elm Street

with Michael Miller

Well, Michael and I sat down to write our second genre mash-up.  Instead of placing the original Ghostbusters in The Shining’s Overlook Hotel, we chose to work with the hugely popular, always hilarious Deadpool and placed him in the dreams of Nancy Thompson, main character of Nightmare on Elm Street, to help banish the infamous Freddy Krueger.  We have yet to determine what our third series installment will be, but since this was, again, very fun to write, we’re very much planning on creating more!  If you’d like to check out our first genre mash-up on The Shining and The Ghosbusters, feel free!

Continue reading “A Very Deadpool Nightmare on Elm Street”

A Very Deadpool Nightmare on Elm Street

The Just Dread-Full Poetry Corner: Mary Elizabeth Coleridge’s “The Witch”

witch poem 5
Preparation for the Witch’s Sabbath: D. Vivant-Denon

I’m not sure why it never occurred to me to analyze poetry on this blog, especially since one famous Edgar Allen Poe made macabre poetry so popular.  (By the way, stay tuned for an examination of some Poe poems to come this summer).  Still, I held fast to films, with the occasional graphic novel, short story review, or miscellaneous essay.  Then, one fateful Wednesday evening during my second semester of PhD course work, my Victorian literature professor assigned a thick chunk of lesser-known female poetry from the Victorian Era to read.  There is, to be sure, an entire world of often unacknowledged brilliance in my Victorian Women Poets anthology, but one work, about the depths of evil shrouded in complete innocence, struck me as particularly apropos for this blog.  We have Mary Elizabeth Coleridge, great grand-niece of renowned Romantic-era poet Samuel Taylor Coleridge, to thank for this subtle work of unnerving literature, an 1896 poem entitled “The Witch.” Continue reading “The Just Dread-Full Poetry Corner: Mary Elizabeth Coleridge’s “The Witch””

The Just Dread-Full Poetry Corner: Mary Elizabeth Coleridge’s “The Witch”

Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein

frakenstein-novelOn the rare occasion that I write about a novel – especially a classic novel – on this horror site, I balk at the prospect.  Reviewing a movie – even analyzing some of its salient components – is fairly easy, but how does one “review” a classic work of literature?  To what extent am I just writing a paper?  Who am I to say whether Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein is a great piece of literature?  Haven’t preceding generations already decided that?  And what in God’s name am I going to say about this novel that is original?  Such hesitant speculation deterred me from writing for about a day after I finished the text, but since I haven’t written for my beloved website for over a month, and since I just read frickin’ Frankenstein, it was hard to justify my lassitude on a permanent basis.

Continue reading “Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein”

Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein

Celebrate We Will: Happy 1st Birthday, Just Dread-Full

Jaelyn's LogoThe title of this post comes from the Dave Matthews Band Song, “Two Step,” an old favorite I found on a dusty, battered but still half-working mixed CD I made in college over a decade ago.  In the song, Dave sings “Celebrate we will, ‘cause life is short but sweet for certain.”  Well, Dave, I agree with you, life is short, and (often, but not always) sweet, but I’m not celebrating because life is short and sweet.  I’m celebrating because my little blog recently had her first birthday (yes, in case you didn’t know, Just Dread-full is a girl), and I’m gushing and bragging like any proud parent.  Unlike the proud parent who thinks her baby is the best, I in no way contend that my blog is the best blog on the interweb (I’m not delusional, and there’s tons of good stuff out there) but it is a creation uniquely mine that I can share with anyone who’s remotely interested.  If I’m Victor Frankenstein, this blog is my glistening, verbose, sometimes pedantic monster – only, it’s not going to skulk around my perimeter, threatening to kill me if I don’t create a mate for it (which I tried to do when I started another blog that I never post on, 1000 in a Decade).

Continue reading “Celebrate We Will: Happy 1st Birthday, Just Dread-Full”

Celebrate We Will: Happy 1st Birthday, Just Dread-Full

N – Or the Frailty of the Non-Monster

n-picturePre-Reading Note:  My grad program has been time consuming, so I haven’t been able to post as regularly.  I hope to keep up a slightly more regular posting schedule, however, in coming weeks, my writing will be supplemented by the works of other bloggers who will add to my Walking Dead Series and/or write about their first frights! (Get excited!)

Funny Story: It took me a second perusal of the comic rendition Stephen King’s N to realize that the plot sits at the nexus of some of my favorite literary areas of exploration.  What – you were expecting a story that was literally funny?  Sorry to disappoint you.  This is a horror blog.  We don’t laugh here. Continue reading “N – Or the Frailty of the Non-Monster”

N – Or the Frailty of the Non-Monster

Taking a Bite Out of Bram Stoker’s Dracula

Dracula Book 2When I read the first Chapter of Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein today (which was a delightful experience filled with melody and profound thought) it occurred to me, yet again, that I read Bram Stoker’s Dracula earlier this summer and never wrote about it.  Sigh.  Such negligence seems remiss for a horror blogger, I told myself.  This is especially true because I don’t write about many classic horror novels.  As a self-professed lover of literature (or, a so-called lit nerd), many of the novels I commit myself to aren’t horror novels (because one must engage in some soul-warming optimism to counter the darkness), so I focus on scary short-stories (and of course, movies) for this blog.  And to me, there is much merit in this approach; it is, after all, easier to critique – or analyze, or review – a short story than it is to do the same with a thick, 300-some page novel. (As such, I have immense respect for book bloggers who manage to eloquently sum up hefty volumes in elegant, relatively concise blog posts.)  But because I don’t read many horror novels, when I finish a classic novel in the horror pantheon, I have to carpe diem and write about it.  So I’ve decided to write about my experience reading Bram Stoker’s Dracula, and compare it to some cinematic adaptations spawned by the work. Continue reading “Taking a Bite Out of Bram Stoker’s Dracula”

Taking a Bite Out of Bram Stoker’s Dracula