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warrenlapine July 28 2014, 17:56

www.fantasticstoriesoftheimagination.com

It's official, Fantastic Stories is now live. Please visit the site and help us get the word out. Fiction in the first issue: "New Beaches" by Daniel Hatch, "Man or Mech" by Becky Kyle, "Invisible Friends" by Steven Sawicki, "Cancelled" by Edward J. McFadden III. Non-fiction: "The Fan" by Carole McDonnell, "The Remake Chronicles" by Adam-Troy Castro, "Area 51 and 1/2" by Steven Sawicki, and an editorial by Warren Lapine.

We are also now open to submissions. 15 cents per word for original fiction with a max of $500.00 and $25.00 for reprints. Guidelines are on the site.

www.fantasticstoriesoftheimagination.com
e_moon60 July 28 2014, 17:49

Seventh Summer Socks

The seventh pair of "Sporty Shorty" socks for summer bike riding aren't finished, but a friend brought me a gorgeous yarn bowl from ArmadilloCon this year  (since I still can't drive, I couldn't go) and that's my excuse for photographing the unfinished pair of socks.  The name of this pair is Carnival.


knitting-bowl-carnival-socks224

Although the top of the sock on the right is in shadow, it's exactly like the one on the left--a rolled top in the gold, then ribbing in the deep rose, then more gold before the turquoise stripe.   The yarns are, from the top:  (1) Ella rae Classic, #135 gold, the "framing" color (top, heel flap. toe) (2) Plymouth Yarns Galway Nep, #541 deep rose, (3) Ella rae Classic Superwash, turquoise (bands long gone, no number), Cascade 220 Superwash handpainted (bands long gone, a rich royal purple heather) Ella rae Classic #90, emerald green.
Read more...Collapse )
dochermes July 28 2014, 16:43

Read on! SUMURU commands you!

From 1951, this was the second in a series of five books* Sax Rohmer wrote about his other mysterious supercriminal. If you have read all the Fu Manchu books and are craving more, Sumuru is very close in style and theme but also has some unique qualities all her own. This particular book has a real startle toward the end, when you realize Sumuru is even more seductive than she seems. (This ending was changed for the British edition SLAVES OF SUMURU.)

Rohmer repeats himself most obviously with his pair of investigative heroes, pretty much lesser copies of Sir Denis Nayland Smith and Dr Petrie. American intelligence ace Drake Roscoe ("Ka-Chow!") is deeply tanned, steely-eyed, with the tense hyperactive nervousness of Smith... drumming his fingers, pacing quickly back and forth, losing patience with his partner's susceptibility to female charm. Working with him is former BBC reporter Tony McKeigh, now temporarily assigned to Intelligence. Tony is perhaps not so much like Petrie as he is like the young romantic fools that Rohmer so often saddled the misogynistic Nayland Smith with. He goes thrugh an awful lot of emotional agony to win the heart of one of Sumuru's followers.

These guys are hot on the trail of one of the great criminal masterminds in thriller fiction, known to her followers as "Our Lady" or "My Lady". She is called the Marquise Sumuru for convenience, having been married to a Japanese nobleman at the start of the war. Like one of Will Eisner's venomous female crooks, she has been married to several very wealthy men, none of whom seemed to have survived for too long. 1417863_640

Although she is described as the most beautiful woman in the world, with a spellbinding golden voice, suprisingly few details are given of her actual appearance. Knowing Sax Rohmer, I expected the old boy to make her an exotic Eurasian or half Egyptian or another of his obsessions (not that there's anything wrong with all that, to be sure). One character seriously says that he thinks Sumuru appears different to each onlooker, always what they consider most desirable... the literal "glamour" of sorcery. There are quite a few hints here that she does indeed know a little witchraft and telpathy. There are also a few suggestions that she in fact very old ("Have you sometimes asked yourself why I never change? Have you asked yourself if I might be the Wandering Jewess?")

Sumuru is the absolute ruler of a global cult, the Order of Our Lady, which she herself founded. Several times, she mentions how her goal is "to restore beauty to a world grown ugly" and even to forestall the coming war between the superpowers. She mentions how the Second World War could have been avoided if someone like her had judiciously assassinated a few leaders. We quickly learn her real plan is much more ominous and inhumane.

Our Lady basically runs a huge religious cult, kidnapping beautiful women from all over the world and keeping them as agents under terror of reprisal and the dominance of her own charisma. Interestingly, most of these followers seem to genuinely believe in their Lady and accept her wisdom without question, like semi-brainwashed members of the religious cults still running around today. Trying to leave means a painful death. These gorgeous minions seduce and entice powerful men into Sumuru's control ("...for men, however brilliantly gifted, readily become enslaved by beauty," as she observes).

She's hit on a good tactic here. Fu Manchu used to inject people with a coma-inducing serum and then revive them as his slaves, using hypnotism and fear as additional incentives. Sumuru has harnessed the immense power of sexual attraction to be her weapon. (Let's face it, how many us either male or female haven't acted like fools for a pretty girl or a handsome guy? If I could have back all the time and money I wasted on...errr, back to the story.)

Although she doesn't show near the Devil Doctor's mega-genius (with his degrees from half a dozen universities, all his inventions and medical discoveries), Sumuru seems to have instead specialized in the study of exotic poisons. Any purpose, any effect, she has a potion for it. Her most unnerving toxin is the "rigor kubus, a sort of fungus that invades the system and apparently turns the body into something like stone." This leads to some grisly scenes, as her victims freeze where they're standing and turn into something hard as marble. I love this technique, it has echoes of the ancient Gorgon, Medusa, whose stare turned men to stone, and it gives Sumuru a slightly supernatural air.

Our Lady's ultimate goal is to establish a new order with herself on the throne, and women of her cult running the world. Men who don't have either useful skills or physical appeal would be liquidated. She has thousands of followers on every continent, and although her actual plan would ultimately end in pointless slaughter and genocide, even now she has become leader of one of the great secret empires. I don't know how seriously we can take her slightly totalitarian vision of the human race reduced to a breeding stock under her enlightened control. Supervillains often had grandiose explanations to justify why they were killing and robbing, none of which stand up to consideration.

As you might expect with Rohmer, the heroes are dogged, rather uninteresting bloodhounds on the scent. The villain, on the other hand, is a fascinating mix of traits. She's an incredible tease, for one thing, constantly keeping the surprising number of men on her personal staff worked up over the one woman that they can't possess. Most symbolically, her great joy is swimming nude in a pool and tormenting a ferocious barracuda named Satan. The killer fish batters himself against a glass partition to get at her and she thinks it's the funniest thing possible. This kind of shows how she regards the world. She also has a mink fetish.

One of things I like best about Sax Rohmer is that (like Robert E. Howard and Ian Fleming), he is right there in everything he wrote, his fears and joys and preoccupations are right there on the page. Sumuru is an impressive creation, not just because of her strong seductive qualities and ingenious schemes, but because Rohmer himself was feeling her awesome presence when he wrote. Like Fu Manchu, she radiates cunning, confidence and determination that in real life would run right over ordinary people. Now I have another four books to track down....

______________
*Our gal actually first appeared in an eight-part BBC serial starting in December 1945, SHADOW OF SUMURU. This was later reworked into the first Sumuru book, NUDE IN MINK (hey, if she's wearing a mink coat, she's not really nude, eh?).
dochermes July 28 2014, 16:09

Wouldn't Atlantis screw up the Gulf Stream?

1 climate efects mu atlantis 001

I don't recall anyone mentioning this, but honestly... look at the size Colonel Churchward thought Atlantis was. What would this have done to the Gulf Stream? Wouldn't northern Europe and the British Isles be a lifeless frozen waste? Not to mention the equally humongous Mu in the Pacific. The effect on all that land mass occupying what is now ocean must have enormous consequences on world climate.

Not that there aren't already reasons to dismiss Atlantis, Mu AND Lemuria, not to mention the Hyborian Age, Middle-Earth and the Flintstones.
jimhines July 28 2014, 15:52

Encouraging Everyday Diversity (Guest Post by Rose Lemberg)

Rose Lemberg was born in Ukraine, and lived in subarctic Russia and Israel before immigrating to the US. Her prose and poetry have appeared in Strange Horizons, Apex, Beneath Ceaseless Skies, Unlikely Story, Daily Science Fiction, and other venues. She edits Stone Telling with Shweta Narayan. Rose has also edited two anthologies: Here, We Cross, a collection of queer and genderfluid poetry from Stone Telling (Stone Bird Press, 2012) and The Moment of Change, an anthology of feminist speculative poetry (Aqueduct Press 2012). Rose can be found at roselemberg.net, Livejournal, and Twitter.

Her newest project, An Alphabet of Embers, will be a professional-paying anthology of “unclassifiables – lyrical, surreal, magical, experimental pieces that straddle the border between poetry and prose.” As of today, it’s within a few hundred dollars of being fully funded.

I’m happy to welcome Rose to the blog to talk about diversity and what looks like a beautiful project.

#

An Alphabet of Embers - Kickstarter ImageI am very grateful to Jim Hines, who invited me to write about everyday diversity in connection with my new editorial project, An Alphabet of Embers.

Fundraising for diverse anthologies has become something of a trend in SFF, with wonderful, successful projects such as Long Hidden and Kaleidoscope, and painful failures such as Spellbound/Spindles. In the best case scenarios, editors are clueful about encouraging a truly diverse pool of submitters, and choose brilliant stories to challenge and inspire readers; worst case scenarios leave behind them disappointment and bitterness. Since I am currently fundraising for a new fiction project, An Alphabet of Embers, this topic has been much on my mind.

An Alphabet of Embers does not have the word “diverse” in its subtitle. I have envisioned the project as an anthology of very short, surrealist, magical, lyrical pieces that would delight their readers with beauty and meaning. I did, however, end up talking about diversity a lot in conjunction with this project – everyday diversity, which is the topic of my blog post today.

I co-edit Stone Telling, a magazine of boundary-crossing poetry, with Shweta Narayan. When I founded Stone Telling in 2010, I did not envision the magazine as specifically a diversity venue – but I wanted personal, emotional, experimental poetry that pushed the boundaries of genre. I also knew from the get-go that I wanted diversity of both voice and theme – I wanted to work with more PoC poets, more LGBTQIA poets, and others; I wanted to encourage new poets and discover published voices unknown to me, alongside those already established. So, from the very first issue, diversity became a cornerstone of Stone Telling. Not only did we encourage, and continue to encourage, new voices, but we also showcased voices of people who’ve been in genre for a very long time and deserve much greater recognition; e.g., it baffles me why JT Stewart is not more widely known – her work is so powerful.

An Alphabet of Embers is my first prose project. While it is not a diversity-themed anthology, I strongly feel that every project of mine must be diverse (c.f. not only Stone Telling, but The Moment of Change and Here, We Cross), showcasing a range of marginalized as well as non-marginalized voices. While I strongly believe in the power of special issues, I feel that everyday diversity is extremely important.

Here are some thoughts of how to cultivate everyday diversity:

Trust. The more marginalized an author is, the harder this trust is to come by. Even the most well-meaning editors don’t always get your marginalizations; every diverse author I talked to has a horror story of a personal rejection that perpetuated oppressions, of a lack of understanding of harmful clichés, of dismissiveness.

Earning your readers’ and submitters’ trust doesn’t mean that you don’t fuck up. It’s impossible to never fuck up, or at least, I don’t think it is a worthwhile aspiration. It’s the reaction to being called out that matters. My advice to editors is this: don’t get defensive, don’t try to explain/justify what you did. Instead – listen. Consider. Go for some empathy. Talk to others – especially people from demographics different from you. Educate yourself about issues that matter to people different from yourself.

Trust is built through your work – your work with submitters, whether you accept or reject them, and the finished products you put out into the world. Your finished products will speak to your principles and your editorial aesthetic. Your body of work – as an editor, writer, speaker – keeps building up. Trust is organic and evolving.

Accept that diversity is not a zero-sum game. This applies to readers, writers, and editors alike. We benefit from a greater variety of voices, writing, publications, venues – and this growth in the field challenges us as editors and writers to do better. (I am hoping to write more about this topic soon).

Consider issues of power. Who benefits from your editorial work? Whose voices are you showcasing? Whose voices are missing from your work? What are you missing, as a reader as well as an editor? Do you stick to comfortable and/or hegemonic narratives, or are you willing to challenge yourself?

Make an effort to include diversity of voice and theme. Diversity of voice is about including authors from different demographics – authors of color and white authors, authors who identify as LGBTQIA and those who do not, neuroatypical and neurotypical authors, etc. Diversity of theme is about showcasing characters who belong to different demographics, as well as different cultural settings. When we limit ourselves to diversity of theme alone, we may get things like all-man panels on feminism in genre. When we limit ourselves to diversity of voice alone, we run the risk of making marginalized people write only about non-marginalized perspectives; e.g. a queer author would make it into a ToC, but only if they write about straight people. A mix between theme and voice also helps to avoid tokenization.

I have written two more entries on this topic:

The submission guidelines for An Alphabet of Embers are here. We have some fabulous rewards, like custom essays and poetry, an additional chapbook of science poetry featuring forgotten figures of science and technology, custom treasure boxes, songs, and more; and we will soon unveil stretch goals with letterpress-printed broadsides, illustrations, a song by the Banjo Apocalypse Crinoline Troubadours, and  a joke issue of Stone Telling! If you’re looking for beauty and wonder, An Alphabet of Embers is for you.

Mirrored from Jim C. Hines.

jpsorrow July 28 2014, 15:27

Book Discussion: "Happy Hour in Hell" by Tad Williams

Time for the last book discussion of the July book releases, Tad Williams' Happy Hour in Hell, the second Bobby Dollar novel. Here's the new cover and cover copy! Who's read this one already? What did you think?





Cover Copy: I've been told to go to Hell more times than I can count. But this time I'm actually going.

My name’s Bobby Dollar, sometimes known as Doloriel, and of course, Hell isn’t a great place for someone like me--I’m an angel. They don’t like my kind down there, not even the slightly fallen variety. But they have my girlfriend, who happens to be a beautiful demon named Casimira, Countess of Cold Hands. Why does an angel have a demon girlfriend? Well, certainly not because it helps my career.

She’s being held hostage by one of the nastiest, most powerful demons in all of the netherworld--Eligor, Grand Duke of Hell. He already hates me, and he’d like nothing better than to get his hands on me and rip my immortal soul right out of my borrowed but oh-so-mortal body.

But wait, it gets better! Not only do I have to sneak into Hell, make my way across thousands of miles of terror and suffering to reach Pandemonium, capital of the fiery depths, but then I have to steal Caz right out from under Eligor’s burning eyes and smuggle her out again, past demon soldiers, hellhounds, and all the murderous creatures imprisoned there for eternity. And even if I somehow manage to escape Hell, I’m also being stalked by an undead psychopath named Smyler who’s been following me for weeks. Oh, and did I mention that he can’t be killed?

So if I somehow survive Hell, elude the Grand Duke and all his hideous minions and make it back to the real world, I’ll still be the most hunted soul in Creation. But at least I’ll have Caz. Gotta have something to look forward to, right?

So just pour me that damn drink, will you? I’ve got somewhere to go.
puppetmaker40 July 28 2014, 12:42

So I was listening to NPR this morning...

And two stories caught my ear.

One was about information avoidance and medical information and the other about people with purpose live longer than those without.

What if your purpose was to avoid medical information?

I kid, I kid.

There is a song in Avenue Q called “Purpose” where Princeton muses on finding his and makes it his goal to do so. He has graduated college with a BA in English and now is trying to figure out what is next so he makes finding his purpose, his purpose.

The study that the article was talking about said that it didn’t seem to make any difference when you found your purpose in life just that you did. Also it doesn’t have to be a life changing or earth shaking purpose just something that works for you.

I have had goals in my life may of which I have accomplished and a few I would like to accomplish. But I have also had purpose in my life. And that purpose has changed from one thing to another over time as my life has changed from one thing to another.

One that has stayed pretty much rock steady for me since the 80s is my purpose to educate people about puppetry. I believe that the information I have learned should be passed on to others to encourage them to share too. I am a fount of knowledge about puppets and all things puppety. I do this at conventions and online. I am willing to teach just about anyone how I make my kind of puppets and the tricks I have learned or been taught over the years that makes it simpler to do.

I have purpose as a mother and a wife.

I have purpose in various fandoms still. Because of professional reasons, I hide a bit when in that sandbox however there are reasons.

I have pretty much had a goal or a purpose most of my life. The only time I felt really adrift was at a rather low point. Once I got back on track, things got better. I know that doesn’t work for everyone or even anyone else but it worked for me. I know my brain is wired a little differently than others but I think none of us are wired the same.

Right now my immediate purpose is to get some puppets done and get ready for Shoreleave.

I am grateful for my purposes through out my life.
suricattus July 28 2014, 12:32

writer's prayer

Universe grant me the serenity to admire the bestselling* works of my friends,

the courage to write my own stories,

and the wisdom to accept that not all will sell the same but that does not mean they should not also be written…






*or critically-acclaimed
suricattus July 28 2014, 11:01

My (tentative) Shamrokon/Eurocon Schedule

Although sad to miss Loncon/Worldcon, I'm thrilled to be attending Shamrokon, and not just because Dublin's become one of my favorite cities to visit!  So, if you're going to be in town that weekend (22-24 August 2014), and thinking about/planning on attending Shamrokon, this is where you can find me...

Adaptations - Live Action To Text
Friday 16:00 - 17:00, E. Room 1/2

We usually think of adaptations going from prose to film, but in this panel we celebrate the other adaptations - movies and tv shows that have become books and comics. (Heather Urbanski (M), Laura Anne Gilman, Lawrence Watt-Evans)

Pseudonyms
Saturday 12:00 - 13:00, D. Ground Floor 2

Pseudonyms, anonymous publications and pen names have been a part of SF&F writing ever since Frankenstein was published anonymously. Sometimes they're an open secret to aid branding (eg Mira Grant) and sometimes they're a secret to allow a work to be judged on its own merits (JK Rowling)  (Laura Anne Gilman, Seanan McGuire, Ann VanderMeer)

"All This Is True Because It Rhymes"
Saturday 21:00 - 22:00, C. Ground Floor 1

Prophecies as a plot device in SF&F  (Laura Anne Gilman, Ruth Frances Long, Andrzej Sapkowski, Jeff VanderMeer)

"She wrote it, but..." - Invisible Women Creators

Sunday 10:00 - 11:00, B. Main Room 2

Madame d'Aulnoy, Sara Coleridge, Mary Shelly, Jane C. Loudon, Margaret Cavendish, Hope Mirrlees, E. Nesbit, Stella Benson, C. L. Moore, Andre Norton, Ursula K. Le Guin, Shirley Jackson, Leigh Brackett, Evangeline Walton....  Women have been profoundly important and influential creators since the very foundation of Speculative Fiction, so why are they often left out of the academic texts, the awards lists and the reprint market? And what do the panel and the audience do to alter this trend?  (Susan Connolly, Laura Anne Gilman, Cheryl Morgan, Theresa Derwin)

rosefox July 28 2014, 03:35

"Get me off this crazy thing!"

Zoloft taper time! The plan:

Day 0 (today): 12.5 mg/day (the dosage I've been on for the last 18 months)
Days 1-14: 6.25 mg/day
Days 15-28: alternate 6.25 mg/day and 0 mg/day
Day 29: fully discontinue

The last time I went off Zoloft I dropped it cold turkey because I was at much too high a dose for me and it was making me suicidal, manic, and possibly psychotic. (As indicated above, my therapeutic dose is below most people's starting dose, and my psychiatrist at the time had no idea how to dose someone like me.) I don't recall experiencing any adverse effects from the abrupt stop, but I wasn't really paying much attention at the time, and I'm not sure I would have noticed anything unless it was worse than the effects of the Zoloft itself. That said, I don't expect to have any problems, especially since I'm tapering this gradually.

I wasn't expecting to be able to cut my half-pills in half again, but J keeps our kitchen knives nice and sharp, so that makes life easier. I could possibly cut them even smaller but I think that's probably unnecessary.

I cannot wait to be off this stuff. Cannot. Wait.

Usual rules for comments about medical stuff: no advice unless I specifically ask (which I'm not) or you think I'm about to inadvertently harm myself.


You're welcome to comment on LJ, but I'd rather you leave a comment on the Dreamwidth version of this entry. The current comment count is comment count unavailable.
kradical July 28 2014, 03:19

final table of contents for Without a License

Later this year, Dark Quest Books will be publishing Without a License: The Fantastic Worlds of Keith R.A. DeCandido, a collection of my short fiction. I've finalized the table of contents, and here's what's gonna be in it:

"Partners in Crime" (a new Dragon Precinct story written for this collection)
"The Ballad of Big Charlie" (originally published in V-Wars, part of the shared-world series created by Jonathan Maberry)
"A Vampire and a Vampire Hunter Walk Into a Bar" (originally published in Amazing Stories #608)
"Under the King's Bridge" (originally published in Liar Liar)
"The Stone of the First High Pontiff" (originally published in Defending the Future: Best-Laid Plans)
"Seven-Mile Race" (a new Cassie Zukav story written for this collection)
"Editorial Interference" (originally published in Fedoras Literary Review Volume 1, #2)
"Sunday in the Park with Spot" (originally published in Furry Fantastic)
"Wild Bill Got Shot" (previously unpublished, written as part of "Two Beers and a Story" at Noreascon in 2004)
"-30-" (originally published as part of the Viral novella series, created by Steven Savile)
"Behold a White Tricycle" (previously unpublished, written for the never-actually-published 44 Clowns: 11 Stories of the 4 Clowns of the Apocalypse anthology)

Not sure of the exact release date for this yet, but I'm looking at the possibility of throwing a release party for it at Arisia in January. We'll see.....
dochermes July 27 2014, 17:08

HOUSE OF HORRORS (not House of Representatives. Although....)

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HOUSE OF HORRORS (1946)



Dir: Jean Yarbrough

1946 was very late in the day for traditional horror flicks and there would only be a few borderline entries that year. A little bit later, Abbot & Costello would send our beloved menagerie into limbo with some affectionate spoofs and, a bit after that, monsters would make a big comeback in science-fiction guises. But for a while, WW II-weary audiences wanted a breather. HOUSE OF HORRORS is a minor film and it features the final Universal monster, the Creeper (played exclusively by Rondo Hatton).

A little background on the Creeper may be useful. His first and best appearance was in the Sherlock Holmes movie THE PEARL OF DEATH. After HOUSE OF HORRORS, the guy reappeared to tell his origin story in THE BRUTE MAN. And Rondo Hatton also played nearly identical characters (not that he had much choice) in THE SPIDER WOMAN STRIKES BACK and THE JUNGLE CAPTIVE.

Enjoying Hatton's movies is a bit of a moral problem. The man (who was once presentable and had played straight roles) suffered from agromegaly. This disease enlarges parts of the face, the hands and feet, and has side effects (like high blood pressure and arthritis)that were eventually fatal in the days before modern hormone therapy. After Rondo Hatton contracted the disease, he gradually became deformed enough that he resembled one of Jack Pierce`s creations but without the makeup*. The studio gave him parts and fairly good money, but they also exploited his looks in advertising and in the films themselves. So if this bothers you, I can see why you wouldn't want to watch his films. (On the other hand, many actors like Reggie Nalder and Margaret Hamilton also had careers based on bad looks, so go figure).

So here's the Creeper, a well-known maniac who kills his victims by breaking their backs. Since he hates women screaming and since they understandably scream when he abruptly confronts them with carnal thoughts, you can see how there would be problems. Although the police think he's dead, he bobs up soggily one night in the river to be found by exactly the wrong person. This is a hypersensitive self-centered sculptor bitter about the way critics have sneered at his work. (Martin Koscleck does a terrific job as Marcel DeLange; you may dislike the character but Kosleck makes him believable. He was also very good in THE MUMMY'S CURSE.)

Ever since BRIDE OF FRANKENSTEIN, Universal had gotten a lot of mileage out of having a bad egg made even worse by a manipulating weasel. As the Creeper agrees to pose for a bust by Marcel, the self-pitying artist primes him to go out and do some extreme osteopathy on the art critics who wronged him. (You know, Marcel has a notorious serial killer living in his house and, even as he sends the brute out to commit murders, he's fashioning a sculpture of the guy... a little bit of evidence there that you know the Creeper, Marcel.)


As broken-backed cadavers start to sprout around the city, the police start to get the vague suspicion that maybe that Creeper guy is still alive and up to his tricks. Soon a breezy, fast-talking art critic (who acts more like a gal reporter) gets on the trail and events rush to the big finale. (Virigina Grey is a delight as the sassy Joan; I've always liked the way her voice shows inflection, and her bizarre hats are worth the price of a rental themselves. I swear, at one point it looks like she has a stuffed bird on her head and another hat looks like big moth wings or something.)

As a monster movie, HOUSE OF HORRORS is decent (mostly enjoyable for Kosleck and Grey) but no classic. There's nothing new or exciting about it except for its star. And there's my real misgiving about this film. I don't find Rondo Hatton scary in the least. Sure he's got a huge chest and shoulders, and hands like Col. John Renwick's. But the famous disfigured face expresses nothing but sadness and pain; he never shows any convincing menace or lust. And he reads his lines as if he's prompting someone else to repeat them for the cameras. I haven`t heard such a flat delivery since Halle Berry in DIE ANOTHER DAY.
____________
The Nazi henchman "Lothar" in THE ROCKETEER was an actor made up to resemble Hatton and in one scene, he did a bit of bone breaking that would have made the Creeper proud.

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