Monthly Archives: December 2020

BEST OF 2020: NOVEMBER

Iron SmokeBalladeer’s Blog’s year-end retrospective comes to a close with this look at November’s best. Hunker down with some Iron Smoke Bourbon to help you ring in the new year.

As usual with whiskey I prefer cask strength, and the people at Iron Smoke amusingly call their cask strength bourbon “Casket Strength.”

It’s ONE-HUNDRED TWENTY PROOF and goes with any celebration.

The Thin ManTHE THIN MAN (1934) – My review of Dashiell Hammett’s final novel, a murder mystery set between Christmas and New Year’s. Click HERE.

GULLIVAR JONES ON MARS (1905) – A work of “ancient” science fiction and a look at the controversy surrounding it. Click HERE.

LEO FONG’S BEST B-MOVIES – Several of Fong’s very flawed but enjoyable films, like Bionic Ninja. Click HERE.

DEMOCRAT GLENN GREENWALD RESIGNS OVER CENSORSHIP OF THE BIDEN CORRUPTION SCANDALS – One of the few journalists left with integrity, Greenwald revealed his censored story about Joe and Hunter Biden AND the emails from his editors wanting the story covered up in order to save Biden’s campaign. Click HERE.

EIGIL HOLST: RIVALS OF SHERLOCK HOLMES (1973) – The renowned Danish detective in a mystery set in Copenhagen. Click HERE.

666 picSIX-HUNDRED & SIXTY SIX (1972) – A combination science fiction/ post-apocalypse/ horror/ religious flick starring cult actor Joe Turkel, best known for his role as Lloyd the Bartender in The Shining. Click HERE.

CHIEF PURSER HORROCKS: RIVALS OF SHERLOCK HOLMES (1973) – Chief Purser Eli Horrocks solves the theft of gold bullion on a trans-Atlantic vessel. This 1900 tale is sort of an Agatha Christie mystery BEFORE Agatha Christie. Click HERE. Continue reading

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GALLUP POLL: DONALD TRUMP IS THE MOST ADMIRED MAN OF 2020

President Trump and flagFor the second year in a row America’s de facto Third Party President Donald Trump is 2020’s most admired man per the Gallup Polling organization. (link below) I will point out again that Trump has done more to help the working class and the poor OF ALL COLORS than any other president of my lifetime.

On top of that, he deserves admiration for the way he strikes fear into the hearts of America’s notoriously corrupt cesspool of a “government.” Trump has fought the disgusting Powers That Be in the U.S. and kept us out of any new wars. He tried to bring home our troops from others, but the military-industrial complex and their pocket politicians always slithered out to prevent that. Continue reading

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CHARLEMAGNE: THE TOURNAMENT TO WIN THE CATHAY PRINCESS

FOR MY FIRST CHAPTER ON CHARLEMAGNE’S PALADINS CLICK HERE

paladins of charlemagneTHE NEXT MORNING, the 31 warriors who wanted to joust for the possession of Princess Angelica of Cathay donned their armor and rode together to the Fountain of the Pine. Angelica’s brother Argalia was awaiting them there.

With Maugris the Enchanter held captive by King Galafron of Cathay, as we saw last time around, none of the Paladins and Muslim soldiers knew that Argalia had the unfair advantage of a mystical lance which would unseat every combatant at its slightest touch.

Astolpho drew the first lot in our previous installment and so he was the first Paladin to face Angelica’s brother the prince. Argalia’s enchanted lance did its usual work of unseating Astolpho immediately upon contact. Astolpho was never noted for success with a lance, though he was deadly with a sword, so nothing much was made of him having been unseated. Continue reading

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FIFTEEN MORE FAILED PREDICTIONS

mascot sword and gun pic

BALLADEER’S BLOG

Balladeer’s Blog has previously examined failed predictions on the part of “psychics,” religious figures and more. This time around here is a list of failed predictions from another belief system with its own form of apocalyptic eschatology.

*** By the year 2000 New York City will be completely submerged by rising sea levels. The sources of that prediction are legion. 

*** By the year 2020 there will be no more snow on Mount Kilimanjaro because of climate change. That was from Al Gore’s Reefer Madness-style Dire Warning flick An Inconvenient Truth plus the Vancouver Sun and others. 

*** In 2004 the Guardian predicted that nuclear and conventional wars would break out by 2020 because of scarce resources. They also predicted that multiple European cities would be under water by 2020. 

*** In 2009, authorities from the U.S. Geological Survey predicted that by 2020 Montana’s Glacier National Park would have no more glaciers. Last year a scramble began to push that date further ahead since obviously 2020 was going to come and go without that prediction coming true. Continue reading

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BEST OF 2020: OCTOBER

Balladeer’s Blog’s end of year retrospective continues with this look at Halloween Month’s best:

Vampire movieFIVE SCARY BUT NOT GORY HORROR FILMS – For those who like scary Halloween flicks that lack intense gore. Click HERE.

THE DISCOVERY OF THE DEAD (1910) – Neglected horror novel about a researcher who discovers a very unique breed of ghosts. Click HERE.

MARTIN LUTHER KING PERSON OF COURAGE BERNADINE KENT ENDORSES PRESIDENT TRUMP FOR REELECTION – The black Democrat lawmaker praises Trump’s many accomplishments for communities of color. Click HERE.

Ghost rider picGHOST RIDER: THE MOST HALLOWEENISH COVERS – A look at the original 1972-1983 run of the Marvel Comics horror character Ghost Rider. Click HERE.

CROW INDIAN TRIBE PLUS MORE BLACK CIVIL RIGHTS LEADERS ENDORSE TRUMP – Click HERE.

FOOL KILLER 50: A 1980s SLASHER VERSION OF THE FOOL KILLER – The title says it all. Click HERE.

JOE BIDEN STAFFER NAMED IN VOTE FRAUD SCANDAL – Because for Democrats, vote fraud is a way of life! Click HERE.

BladeBLADE THE VAMPIRE SLAYER: THE EARLY YEARS – A look at the original 1973-1983 run of the Marvel Comics horror character Blade. Click HERE.

THE MOST HALLOWEENISH WEREWOLF BY NIGHT COVERS – A look at the Marvel Comics horror series called Werewolf by Night. Click HERE.

TECHNO-FASCISTS CENSOR STORIES ABOUT BIDEN FAMILY CORRUPTION – Click HERE.

FACULTY LOUNGE FASCIST ROUNDUP: OCTOBER 6th – A look at the Democrat Archie Bunkers of the “educational system” (LMAO) – Click HERE.

FOUR NEGLECTED HALLOWEEN STORIES – Four neglected horror short stories from the 1800s onward. Click HERE. Continue reading

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REMINDER OF THE JANUARY 6th PROTEST OF THE STOLEN 2020 ELECTION

Trump is like jfk

One by assassination, the other by vote fraud?

Independent Voter site Balladeer’s Blog is posting this reminder of the January 6th protest in Washington D.C. over the forever-tainted 2020 presidential election results. Just as few now doubt that Samuel Tilden and not Rutherford B Hayes really won the 1876 election or that George W Bush stole the year 2000 election the 2020 election apparently will be remembered for the way America’s cesspool of corruption which masquerades as a government stole the election from de facto Third Party President Donald Trump.

This is not a partisan issue. Regular readers know I despise both the Republicans AND the Democrats and would love to see both parties splinter into multiple smaller parties in order to break their stranglehold on our government. Just like John F Kennedy, Trump has been about the only president to rock the corrupt Washington boat. It looks like the next decades will follow the JFK assassination pattern – more and more people will acknowledge a coverup and a virtual industry will thrive with books and documentaries about the mountain of evidence regarding election fraud this year. Continue reading

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CHARLEMAGNE: THE PRINCESS OF CATHAY

CharlemagneChristmas time through Twelfth Night is the time of year that Balladeer’s Blog covers tales of Charlemagne and his Paladins. These tales are the legends, not the historical accounts of the real Emperor Charlemagne and his court. FOR MY FIRST CHAPTER ON CHARLEMAGNE’S PALADINS CLICK HERE 

Charlemagne's empireTHE PRINCESS OF CATHAY – The previous installment’s reference to a tournament prompted a lot of readers to ask for a full-blown tournament story from the tales of Charlemagne. As always, I listen to you readers, so here we go.

During the brief period of Charlemagne’s Peace, when he was not at war with any of the other powers in the known world, the Emperor held a magnificent tournament. With no war currently raging between the Franks and others, participants from all over came to Paris for the event.

Even Saracens from Muslim-Colonized Spain competed in the jousting and enjoyed the feasts. During one such feast, the court was surprised by a visit from four 10-foot tall giants who bore a divan. Beside the giants and their burden walked a Paladin in exotic, unfamiliar armor. Upon the divan sat the most beautiful woman ever seen by any of those present.

masc graveyard smallerThe woman’s black hair was adorned with jewels and her clothing was of the finest kind. She and her Paladin were permitted to approach Charlemagne’s throne and present themselves. The woman identified herself as Princess Angelica of Cathay. The man in armor was her brother, Prince Umberto.

NOTE: In many medieval legends such as this, “Cathay” does not refer to the actual location in northwest China but to a mythical city-state which supposedly existed in some non-specific location to the East of Europe. This fictional Cathay combined qualities of Europe and the Far East.

Princess Angelica presented the challenge she and her brother brought with them – Prince Umberto would joust with any of the armored warriors gathered for the tournament. He would meet them one by one by the Fountain of the Pine. Continue reading

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BEST OF 2020: SEPTEMBER

Balladeer’s Blog’s end of year retrospective resumes with this look at September’s best:

DuneAMERICA: PART OF THE DUNE FRANCHISE – America’s equivalents of the Harkonnens and other Houses. Click HERE.

TWENTY MORE SENSATIONAL FAILED PREDICTIONS – The latest list of predictions which failed big-time. Click HERE.

DEMOCRAT SLOGANS – A humorous look at the attitudes and policies of Democrats. Click HERE.

THE FIRST TWENTY HULK STORIES FROM THE 1960s – The Hulk takes on the Leader, the Gargoyle, the Circus of Crime and more. Click HERE.

FOOL KILLER: JULY 1911 – The Fool Killer whacks bloated rich pigs like J.P. Morgan, William A Clark, astrologers and others. Click HERE.

DEMOCRATS AND CORPORATE FASCISM – A look at the Democrats and their embrace of corporate fascism. Click HERE.

Blue Bolt coverSUPERHERO PANTHEON OF NOVELTY PRESS – Forgotten 1940s superheroes like the White Streak, Twister, Sub-Zero Man and the Green Sorceress. Click HERE.

CIVIL RIGHTS ICON CLARENCE HENDERSON SAYS TRUMP DID MORE FOR PEOPLE OF COLOR IN FOUR YEARS THAN BIDEN DID IN NEARLY FIFTY. The title says it all. Click HERE.

VENUS IN FURS: AN OPERA VERSION OF THE 1870 NOVEL – Another look at an opera adaptation of an unexpected work. Click HERE. Continue reading

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A CHRISTMAS CAROL (2018)

A Christmas Carol 2018A CHRISTMAS CAROL (2018) – MERRY CHRISTMAS! Balladeer’s Blog’s eleventh annual Christmas Carol-A-Thon takes a look at this Scottish adaptation of the Dickens classic. David Izatt directed and Stuart Brennan wrote and stars as Ebenezer Scrooge. 

The premise of a modern-day Scrooge running a distillery definitely sounds like it could work, but Brennan is absurdly over the top in the lead role. He’s not stingy and covetous, he’s psychotic. There are cartoon depictions of Scrooge who aren’t as artificial as this.

Brennan’s Scrooge is more like a supervillain from a bad comic book movie than he is like a money-grubbing executive. J.R. Ewing would tell this guy to show some subtlety.

Sarina Taylor portrays Bob Cratchit … not even Bobbie Cratchit, just “Bob” in a fairly lazy creative decision. She doesn’t have a sickly son named Tiny Tim, she has a cancer-stricken husband named Tim (Scott Ironside). Whether or not she calls him Tiny Tim is an issue for their marriage counselor, not me.  Continue reading

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A DIVA’S CHRISTMAS CAROL (2000)

A Diva's Christmas CarolA DIVA’S CHRISTMAS CAROL (2000) – Balladeer’s Blog’s Eleventh Annual Christmas Carol-A-Thon continues with a look at this Vanessa Williams venture. Due to the nature of this adaptation of the Dickens classic it is often categorized as one of the “African-American versions.” Among other such Carols I have reviewed are Christmas is Comin’ Uptown with Gregory Hines and John Grin’s Christmas starring Robert Guillaume. 

The forever-underrated Vanessa Williams is brilliant in this very good film that mixes comedy, music and drama together far better than many stage versions manage to do. Williams stars as Ebony Scrooge, a pop singer who puts on a kind and pleasant public face but who is a … well, a diva behind the scenes.  

Ebony is even more nasty than usual as she pushes her entourage beyond all their limits to get ready for an alleged “charity” show for the homeless on Christmas. Ebony’s demeanor makes it clear that she is really doing it all just for public image reasons and to feed her own ego (Bono – cough – Bono) as she wallows in the plaudits sent her way.   Continue reading

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