wings hauser

I’m sure Italy is a wonderful place: nice people, delightful food and wine, rich history, beautiful scenery, etc, etc. But ‘giallo’ films and Italian horror as a whole…I’ll just say they make me absolutely sick.

And I think I know why:

Caligula.

Now Caligula can’t be considered ‘giallo’ OR horror, but it might as well be. If you recall, that film absolutely scared the shit out of me as a kid and I never quite recovered. So my response to Italian horror is similar to having alcohol poisoning: if you get it once by drinking vodka, you can’t quite stomach vodka again. The Italian style of tight closeups, zooms, disorienting music and editing, and fixation on gore and nudity just make me a little queasy.

But I have a job to do. And that job is to watch EVERY cheapass horror film on Tubi. That includes the filmography of the legendary Lucio Fulci. So I started at the worst possible place:

A Cat in the Brain.

The movie forced me to do some research while I was watching it, largely because I had no idea what the fuck was going on. Fulci plays the lead: himself as a film director that’s slowly becoming disturbed by a movie he’s making. As we watch him descend into madness, we’re shown random clips from prior films, almost as if this movie was thrown together in the most halfassed way possible.

A Cat in the Brain was produced towards the end of Fulci’s distinguished career, so there’s no telling where he was mentally. But I’ll say this: Fulci did a much better job of cobbling together this Frankenstein of a movie than Godfrey Ho did for Robo Vampire.

I neglected to mention that A Cat in the Brain is considered a “comedy” (thus deploying the “covering your ass” method over decade before Tommy Wiseau did for The Room). Maybe the humor went over my head, but I was too petrified watching some guy beat his wife’s face off to laugh.

You needn’t worry though, because this movie has a happy ending: a disgusting Fulci sails off into the sunset with a bikini-clad woman that’s at least a third his age.

I hated A Cat in the Brain. But Fulci fans love it. Just check out the reviews at IMDB.

After watching that shitshow I needed a palate cleanser. That’s when I found the 1984 Wings Hauser and Bo Hopkins (RIP) classic , Mutant.

Perhaps calling Mutant a ‘classic’ is a bit of a stretch, yet despite its lackluster script, it is competently made. It’s a story we’ve seen a thousand times before: strangers roll into town, weird things happen, everyone turns into zombies, heroes save the day in the most ham fisted way, blah blah blah.

Of course, none of the character archs pay off. Least of all Bo Hopkins’, the alcoholic town sheriff with a dark past. Nevertheless, Hauser and Hopkins’ performances carry the day, ALMOST to the point where you don’t feel cheated out of your time or money.

Actually, I just LOVE saying ‘Wings Hauser’. It sounds like Wings of Desire, the 1987 Wim Wenders film. Then I imagine Wings Hauser being in Wings of Desire and it makes me happy. His might be my most favorite name of anyone who has ever had a name.

Wings Hauser

It’s not his birth name, but still…

what is a reel ass dude?

Definitions vary. But in short, it’s any person that rides a fine line between being insane…or criminally stupid…and a total menace to society.

Which leads to a bigger question that I get asked everyday of my life: how does one get inducted into the Internet Ruined Everything’s Hall of Fame of Real Ass Dudes (IREHOFRAD)?

Because this is such an elite club, one must meet the following criteria:

1. Demonstrated clear excellence in insanity or stupidity. But their eccentricities can’t lead them to be perpetually in jail. Remember, being a menace to society is a clear disqualification for being a real ass dude. Serial killers, mass murderers, and Harvey Weinstein will never qualify.

2. That being said, there are bonus points for criminal activity. DUIs, robbery, minor drug trafficking, embezzling, manslaughter, fraud, etc, are perfectly acceptable. Sex and hate crimes, however, are an automatic disqualification. OJ Simpson totally rides the line here.

3. Have outstanding achievements in the fields of entertainment, business, sports, politics, technology, etc, that will stand the test of time REGARDLESS of their insanity, stupidity, and criminal activities. A prime example here is Bobby Knight. The man had no business coaching a college basketball program who nevertheless won three national titles. This is why Knight was the first inductee into the HOF.

Basically to get into the Hall, inductees must exemplify, or outright facilitate, the decline of society’s collective super ego.

Have someone you want to nominate? Let me know in the comments.

On the ballot next year is OJ Simpson, Brett Favre, Lyndon Baines Johnson, and Donald Trump. Only one can get in.

“bitcher”: where free speach is MANDATORY

All the political ideologues claim they want to protect free speech. Well now’s the time to put their money where their mouth is.

Twitter’s a dumpster fire.

So allow me to introduce you to new kind of free speech platform: Bitcher.

Clearly I haven’t worked out all the kinks yet. Nor have I set up a website. Any Big Tech billionaire can take (or steal, if you prefer) this idea.

But here’s the general concept:

-For every Bitch (equivalent to a “Tweet”), there is NO character MAXIMUM. Only a character MINIMUM (which would greatly exceed the character maximum on Twitter). The idea being that participants MUST present a well reasoned Bitch. If any poster tries to cheat the system by circumventing the character minimum (i.e by stringing together random words and letters, or by typing something like “penis penis penis,” etc) then that Bitch will be flagged and removed and the poster will be suspended for a brief period.

-Each Bitch must have at least ONE hyperlink to an external source that is relevant to its subject. To submit a reply, the poster MUST click on the link. Replies don’t have to provide links, but must meet the character minimum.

-If a reply also presents an external link that’s relevant to the subject, the OP MUST respond within a given timeframe (ex: 48 hours). If there are an excessive amount of replies that fit this criteria, a minimum amount of replies from the OP will be set (ex: 5). Failure from the OP to reply will result in a temporary suspension.

-Name calling and obscene language ARE permitted. (Terroristic threatening and harassment are not)

-It will be highly encouraged on the platform to belittle and name call any politico on Twitter that has yet to join Bitcher (within the bounds of reason, of course). If they are interested in free speech, then they should have the courage to join Bitcher.

-It is my belief that the format of Twitter encourages snark, sarcasm, dunking, and just general stupidity with its character limitations. By setting a high character MINIMUM, hopefully this will minimize the effectiveness of those acts by FORCING the participant to engage thoroughly.

So you want free speech? Here’s your chance:

Bitcher: Where Free Speech is MANDATORY

This is bullshit

I can’t believe that in the middle of my obsession with Phil Spector, it completely missed me that Ronnie Spector died!

Why didn’t anybody tell me?

I guess between Bob Saget and Meat Loaf passing that the news somehow fell between the cracks. But that’s no excuse!

Pop music wouldn’t be what it is without the Ronettes.

Why are all the GOATs dying?

Somebody keep an eye out for Tom Brady. 😕

u look like a fool!

No matter how educated you are, no matter how smart you believe yourself to be, you CAN be deceived.

You WILL be deceived.

Ever heard of SANTA CLAUS? He’s real. He died in 2020. His real name was James Randi and he was one of the greatest scientific skeptics and magicians of all time:

You know who else isn’t real?

Kool Moe Dee

Those freestyle skills were unreal.

penisball

So I was tossing and turning over night, agonizing over a specific question: is pop culture dead?

Of course, “pop culture” can never really “die” so long as there’s entertainment, fashion, etc. But has it fundamentally shifted in a way that requires new methods of critique?

Guys like Theodore Adorno were critiquing “pop culture” way back in the 1940s, claiming things like movies, music, etc. were massed produced commodities and were therefore not genuine (or whatever). But maybe the pandemic and the prolific use of the internet has changed the game.

Obviously these things have changed the way we interact with pop culture, but the question I’m concerned with is: “has the pandemic, and specifically the internet, changed the very nature of pop culture itself.”

(This is all from my dementia-driven perspective, btw)

Anyways, what made me agonize over this question is that everything feels a little passé. When people talk about reading tweets, I’m thinking “you’re still using Twitter?”. Even at 106 years old, I feel like I’m more “in the know” than most 20 year olds. It’s not because I’m “cooler” than them, it’s because they don’t give a shit. So how can “pop culture” be pop culture if it’s not popular?

Please help me. I haven’t slept in 27 days.