Balladeer’s Blog’s end of year retrospective concludes with this look at November’s best:
A NEW LIST OF HILARIOUSLY WRONG PREDICTIONS FROM PSYCHICS – Cannibalism in Pennsylvania? A Civil War in the 1980s?
All that and more. CLICK HERE
ANCIENT SCIENCE FICTION: The People of the Moon (1895) HERE , The Dominion in 1983 (1883) HERE , A Fantastical Excursion Into The Planets (1839) HERE
THE RUSTIC – My look at this ancient Greek Comedy by Epicharmus. CLICK HERE
ALLEGRO NON TROPPO – A review of the 1977 Italian film. CLICK HERE
IRON SIGHTS: TWO PSYCHOS – Comic book giant Richard C Meyer’s latest graphic novel featuring all-out action against the Mexican drug cartels. CLICK HERE
CONGRESSWOMAN TULSI GABBARD CALLS OUT HER PARTY – The heroic role model once again displays her courage. CLICK HERE
THE BLACK TULIP: SWASHBUCKLER – An action-filled adaptation of the Alexandre Dumas novel from 1850. CLICK HERE Continue reading
FOR PART ONE OF BALLADEER’S BLOG’S EXAMINATION OF THIS OLD, OLD MARVEL COMICS STORYLINE CLICK HERE The revisions I would make are scattered throughout the synopsis below.
AMAZING ADVENTURES Vol 2 #37 (July 1976)
Title: Arena Kill
Synopsis: NEW YEAR’S EVE, 2019 into 2020, which is why I held off the extra day or two to post this review, since I wanted it to actually appear on the REAL December 31st, 2019.
Northern Florida, in the Okefenokee National Wildlife Refuge along the Suwanee River. Killraven and his Freemen continue their guerilla uprising against Earth’s alien conquerors. They have encountered another of the pitifully few bands of humans who also defy the aliens.
We jump right into the middle of some action, as Killraven is pitting his sword against the two battle axes wielded by Brother Axe, the leader of this rebel colony. Brother Axe’s dozens of followers and Killraven’s own Freemen stand in a large circle around the combatants, watching the battle.
The cause of the conflict soon becomes clear – Brother Axe is skeptical that Killraven really is THE Killraven, the world-famous scourge of Earth’s alien conquerors. He suspects KR and his band may be fakers trying to bamboozle him or – even worse – undercover human quislings trying to pinpoint the location of Brother Axe’s rebel band so they can betray the band to their alien masters. Continue reading
THE THIN MAN (1934) – Mystery writer Dashiell Hammett’s final novel, The Thin Man, introduced former private detective Nick Charles and his wealthy socialite wife Nora. After marrying Nora, Nick left detective work in order to manage her business interests.
When a former client of Nick’s – eccentric inventor and title character Clyde Wynant – is suspected of murdering his female assistant/ mistress Julia Wolf, Nick is told that Clyde wants him to prove his innocence. Though retired, Nick is unwillingly drawn deeper into the investigation by circumstances beyond his control.
The Thin Man is set in New York City from Christmas Day of 1932 through the following few days, making it ideal Christmas into New Year’s reading material. Unlike Hammett’s Sam Spade and Continental Op characters, Nick and Nora Charles live it up among the wealthy and famous, traveling at will, dining at the best restaurants and gleefully downing as much booze as they can despite Prohibition still being in effect.
The Charles’ schnauzer Asta is along for the ride but she doesn’t become cloyingly cutesy like the dog would sometimes do in the Thin Man movie series.
The “lovable lushes” aspect of Nick and Nora’s characters is a huge part of their charm, along with their sparkling, witty banter. Readers get to feel as brilliant and sexy as the two leads as they fend off unwanted advances, sling snappy dialogue and interact with shady criminal types plus assorted New York entertainers and Old Money families. Continue reading
Democrats are in SERIOUS need of introspection and soul-searching, yet refuse to venture out of the pompous haze of self-infatuation that they wrap themselves in 24 hours a day. THEY are the 21st Century’s “Ugly Americans” who prance along oblivious to all of their faults while fancying themselves to be THE moral models for the rest of us. (For the Republicans see below)
We are long past the time when America’s pompous, pretentious asses called Democrats need to be called out on their ridiculous airs. Let’s dare to blaspheme against the Democrats’ most sacred deities – Themselves:
*** GROW UP, ALREADY! YOUR PERCEPTIONS HAVE BECOME NOTHING MORE THAN WISH FULFILLMENT OR DELUSIONS TO STROKE YOUR OWN EGOS AND TELL YOURSELVES HOW WONDERFUL YOU CONSIDER YOURSELVES TO BE. (Over and over again, too, until you become unbearable. Then when you drive people away you despairingly moan how you think everyone you know is becoming right-wing.)
*** YOU HAVE A SIMPLE-MINDED, COMIC BOOK-LEVEL WORLDVIEW IN WHICH LIFE IS A CHILDISH FANTASY ABOUT GOOD GUYS AND BAD GUYS WITH YOURSELVES CONSTANTLY PAINTED AS THE GOOD GUYS AND EVERYONE WHO DISAGREES WITH YOU AS THE BAD GUYS.
*** YOU INSIST ON CASTING ALL OTHER ADULTS AS SUPPORTING PLAYERS IN YOUR INCREASINGLY JUVENILE DRAMAS, WITH YOU AS THE CORRECT-THINKER SETTING STRAIGHT THE VILLAINS OF THE PIECE.
*** AND IT ISN’T JUST THAT YOU PERPETUAL CHILDREN CAST EVERYONE ELSE AS SUPPORTING PLAYERS IN THOSE DRAMAS, IT’S THAT YOUR LIMITED IMAGINATIONS CAN ONLY CONJURE UP SUCH FOURTH-RATE DRAMAS. Continue reading
Reblogged on Balladeer’s Blog
Balladeer’s Blog’s look back at 2019 continues with Halloween Month’s best:
THE MONKS OF MONK HALL – This eerie and macabre 1845 novel features human and supernatural menaces operating in 1842 Philadelphia. “Twin Peaks Goes To The 1840s” is how I describe this book, which was America’s best-selling novel before Uncle Tom’s Cabin. CLICK HERE
THE “RIGHT SIDE OF HISTORY” DELUSION – Only fools think that they know what the final verdict of history will be regarding the times they are living through. CLICK HERE
KILLRAVEN: THE FINALE OF THE DEATH-BIRTH SAGA – The final two chapters of the most acclaimed Killraven saga of them all. CLICK HERE and HERE
THE WERWOLVES – An 1898 werewolf story from Canada. CLICK HERE
ROLLING STONE’S MATT TAIBBI – The journalist blasts the Democrats’ “permanent coup attempt.” CLICK HERE
MAD MAX (1979) – A lengthy review of the Mel Gibson/ George Miller post-apocalypse classic. CLICK HERE
THE COFFIN – The year 2000 graphic novel about a macabre, unliving superhero. CLICK HERE
CIA CRIMES – The disgusting past of one of the most loathsome American organizations in history. CLICK HERE Continue reading
FOR THE FIRST CHAPTER ON CHARLEMAGNE’S PALADINS CLICK HERE
I. A 14 ft tall giant named Ferragus was preying upon Charlemagne’s subjects, carrying them away at will and devouring them in his cave. When the Emperor was made aware of this situation by the inhabitants of the affected region he called for a volunteer from among his Paladins to kill the giant.
Roland was the first and loudest volunteer and so Charlemagne, despite being worried over his nephew’s safety, permitted him to ride off to battle Ferragus.
A few days later Roland had ridden to the site of the giant’s mountain cave. The monster emerged to battle the armored adventurer and the two clashed. Hours went by with Ferragus unable to slay Roland and with Roland’s enchanted sword Durindana failing to penetrate the giant’s thick skin. Continue reading
Balladeer’s Bowl always pits the National Champions of the NAIA (National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics) against the National Champions of the NCAA Division Three.
The MORNINGSIDE COLLEGE MUSTANGS are the NAIA Champions for 2019.
The NORTH CENTRAL (IL) CARDINALS are the NCAA Division Three Champions for 2019.
Readers of Balladeer’s Blog get to vote on the winner, to be announced on New Year’s Day, so NAIA and D3 boosters can begin their annual deluge of emails to me arguing for their choice. Continue reading
Balladeer’s Blog’s end of year retrospective continues with this look at September’s best:
POLEIS (CITIES) 422-419 B.C. – A look at the ancient Greek political comedy written by Eupolis. CLICK HERE
TRANSGRESS WITH ME: SEPTEMBER 23rd – Are you brave enough to share some more transgressive thoughts? CLICK HERE
ANCIENT SCIENCE FICTION – Messages From Mars (1892) HERE , The Queen of Appalachia (1901) HERE , Babylon Electrified (1888) HERE , Looking Forward (1899) HERE , The Automatic Maid (1893) HERE
HEROIC WOMEN FIGHTING OPPRESSION IN THE MUSLIM WORLD – The title says it all. CLICK HERE
WOI EPIC – A Liberian epic myth about gods and demons. CLICK HERE
ISAIAH WASHINGTON – And yet another Martin Luther King Person of Courage to profile – CLICK HERE Continue reading
Balladeer’s Blog takes another look at some very strange movies from the cinematic hinterlands. Enjoy these four to help get over any post-Christmas blues.
INVASION OF THE BEE GIRLS (1973) – William “Big Bill” Smith from biker films and the old western series Laredo stars as a government agent investigating the mysterious deaths of scientists working on Top Secret projects.
Turns out a female mad scientist is creating a race of human/queen bee hybrids out of female subjects. These Bee Girls then go forth and slay their male targets by literally “loving” them to death. Continue reading