The laughing, leaping, clingy character played by Mark Duplass is definitely unnerving in soon-to-be-released found-footage film “Creep”, and it’s that childlike buffoonery that makes the last two scenes in this trailer genuinely scary. (more…)
Okay, now that I’ve caught your attention with a sensational headline that appeals to your baser instincts, here’s a chance to redeem yourself by exercising your philanthropy and love of werewolves at the same time (philycanthropy?). Anathema is a horror comic project by writer Rachel Deering, artist
Alan Quah Chris Mooneyham and colourist Jorge Maese.
The story focuses on a huntress named Mercy Barlowe, who falls in love with the daughter of a local reverend. When the romantic nature of their relationship is discovered, the reverend cries heresy and vows to see both women tried as witches. Mercy escapes, but the reverend’s daughter is sentenced to burn. The agony and torment of the burning lures wicked creatures from the darkness, who attack the village and steal the souls of the dying women. Mercy vows to track the evil beings to the ends of the earth and vanquish them to reclaim her lover’s soul, even if it means taking on dark powers of her own.
What sort of dark powers might Mercy take on, do you think? Hmmmmmmm. What web site are you on right now?
They are looking to raise $6,000 through Kickstarter by Friday September 2nd, which will pay for the first issue’s art and printing costs. That sounds pretty reasonable to me! As with all Kickstarter projects, the more you contribute the more sweet stuff you get in return. You were pretty quick to follow the link here, so you must be totally jazzed to help out, right?
Hello everyone! My name is Macabri, and you’re reading this because I have been given the great honor of being added as a contributing writer to this site! I thought I would kick things off with a review of “Werewolf Haiku” by Ryan Mecum.
There is no really good way to sum up what this book is like. It’s funny, it’s wild, it’s gross, it’s disturbing and much more. I read this little beauty on a plane trip to Florida, and it was one of those books where you try to make sure no one is peeking over your shoulder. It’s pretty hard to explain why you’re reading a book whose contents are splattered with images of blood, matted hair and pig heads.
“Werewolf Haiku” follows the life of a mailman who has been bitten by a werewolf and has now become a werewolf himself. It is essentially a personal journal of his life after his lupine encounter, but told entirely in haikus. (That’s the five-seven-five syllable format you likely learned in school.) As you may have surmised, this is no sissy werewolf type of story. We’re talking puking, moonlight hunts and gallons of blood.
I’m still not sure how this book really makes me feel. At times I was positively nauseated (and I have a REALLY strong stomach). At other times I found myself giggling. How can you not laugh at a haiku that says:
If you think tacos
are hard for you to digest,
try passing chipmunks.
Pretty funny, right? At the same time, there is something so disturbingly honest about the descriptions in the book. Things are said that make sense, but that also make you wonder about the author and where some of the ideas came from. For example, there was this haiku:
When people eat corn
and spot them in their feces-
teeth are that way, too.
I get that, it makes sense, but it also goes over a line that rarely gets crossed even in horror literature. There are quite a number of squirm-worthy comments throughout the book.
If you have a weak stomach, this is not the book for you. I have a strong stomach, and I’m still not sure it was the book for me, either. Maybe I’ll give it another read sometime…but definitely not after I’ve just eaten.
I’ll give this book 3 out of 5 dead squirrels.
The more popular a dangerous thing becomes, the more rounded its corners get and the safer it becomes for public consumption. Just look at what happened to punk music: from Sex Pistols to Green Day in just 12 years! It’s plausible that the recent glut of mom-and-teen-friendly horror/fantasy entertainment is in danger of having the same effect on werewolves. Until recently, I was actually concerned about this. A Google News search for “werewolves” would result in a dizzying hall-of-mirrors effect involving Taylor Lautner and Joe Manganiello and I would have to go lay down until the shakes went away. But no more! I’m confident that the werewolf will always remain a creature of horror and gleeful, animalistic mayhem. What changed, you ask? Simple: I read Joshua Boulet’s graphic novel “The Wrong Night in Texas“. This book contains a story that you already know if you’re even remotely familiar with horror comics and movies. There’s a young couple, an isolated cabin and a werewolf whose human appearance identifies him as the antagonist the instant he appears. If this were a song we’d all know the words after hearing the opening four notes. But what makes “Texas” special is the masterful way Joshua plays it– this is no cover. This isn’t even a tribute. He simply owns the story in a way that’s so confident, vicious and downright fun that it feels new and fresh, and as a result it’s impossible not to pay attention. And just when you’re having a good time, confident that you know what’s coming next, Joshua steps right over the werewolf horror tropes and punches you in the stomach. More than one panel had me pulling wide-eyed double-takes. The effectiveness of these storytelling maneuvers is due in part to pacing and composition. William Strunk told writers to omit needless words; here, Joshua omits needless panels. He has a cinematographer’s eye for angles and blocking, and combined with his knack for illustrating just the right beats of the action, the story progresses in a way that’s relentless without ever feeling rushed. The reader learns just enough about each character to believe in them, and to form opinions about them. That most of those opinions will probably be negative matters not a bit; once the werewolf arrives and the blood starts splattering the walls, it’s impossible not to root for these people, even the asshole redneck brother. I wanted everyone to survive because I was genuinely scared for them, which made the shock of the grisly deaths (and there are a lot of them, believe me) all the more effective. The book’s carefully tailored economy isn’t confined to the storytelling. The artwork is spare but packed with details and flourishes in all the right places. Joshua’s faces, for instance, tend to contain fewer lines than one usually sees in comic-style art, but the lines he does draw tell you everything you need to know about the character’s emotions. The plentiful gore is rendered in busy clumps and blobs that imply visceral nastiness without ever getting too detailed– you know when you’re looking at a gouged-out eye or spilled intestines, but Joshua smartly avoids going for the cheap thrills of gore porn. Where Joshua’s art truly excels is exterior environments. When introducing an exterior he often takes a quarter panel or even half the page and fills it with lush, organic fields of colour and stark pools of black shadow. His use of gradients and transparency do wonders for setting up an atmosphere, whether it’s the torrential rain and wind of the eponymous night or the cruel sunlight of the morning after. Even the black and white still life compositions that bracket the story vibrate with the suggestion that they are real places. “A horror story that stays true to the genre”, reads the epigraph on the back cover, and while “Texas” isn’t the first piece of horror media to assert its value by claiming to be authentic horror, it’s the first thing I’ve experienced in a long time that genuinely horrified me. It also thrilled me with its energy, charmed me with its lovingly-crafted aesthetic and, above all, satisfied that primal part of my brain that just wants to see a vicious, monstrous werewolf tearing shit up.
Buy, borrow or skip?
Buy. Joshua Boulet has captured and unapologetically celebrated everything that makes the werewolf wild, dangerous and fun. Available from Joshua’s web site for $10 US + $5 shipping,
Through the magic of Facebook, I came across these great photos of Werewolf News reader / contributor / friend Macabri. She was kind enough to let me post them here, and she had this to say about the shoot:
What I can tell you is that is was for a horror-themed group shoot that happened last year in San Diego. Each model was asked to dress up as some sort of monster, but since the coordinator already knew me, she asked me to be their werewolf. The makeup artist (Chrissy Lynn) is really good with blending sexy and scary and did the makeup from scratch that day with little to no planning. She always blows me away.
Great makeup, great photos, great concept! This looks like it was a lot of fun– I wonder if stuff like this happens in Vancouver? Thanks for sharing, Macabri!
If you’re at all interested in books, you’ve probably heard of the recent classic literature / horror novel mashups Pride and Prejudice and Zombies and Sense and Sensibility and Sea Monsters. These silly (but generally well-received) conglomerations of classic prose and monsterific additions have been sufficiently popular that Del Ray’s doing it again, this time with werewolves. GalleyCat has announced that Little Women, the story of the March sisters, will be retold as “Little Women and Werewolves”. No word on a publication date yet, but here’s a description from the publisher to keep you interested:
In this retelling of Louisa May Alcott’s classic, the beloved little women must keep not just the wolf, but the werewolves, from the door…and the kindly old gentlemen next door and his grandson may have some secrets to hide–or share with the March girls.
A while ago, ArcLight sent me a note about a werewolf comic called Bane Of The Werewolf. I haven’t actually had a look at it until now, and I like what I see! It’s a retro-revival creation, very gothic in its art and story– the web site describes it as being “akin to the silver-age horror comics produced in the 1970s, with guidance taken from black and white, classic horror films of the 1930s-40s.” It looks like a labour of love created, written and illustrated by Rob E. Brown (of Marvel Comics & Chaos Comics). You can pick up issue 1 (pictured above) from Silver Phoenix Entertainment, and a preview of issue 2 is available on the Bane Of The Werewolf blog.