The Cultural Gutter

going through pop culture's trash since 2003

"We are all in the gutter, but some of us are looking at the stars." -- Oscar Wilde

RIP, Arthur Rankin, Jr.

Animator, director and producer Arthur Rankin, Jr. has died. Rankin is probably best known for his Rankin/Bass studio’s holiday television specials such as Rudolf the Red-Nosed Reindeer, Santa Claus Is Comin’ To Town and Mad Monster Party. He also produced and directed The Last Unicorn, The Hobbit (1977), The Return Of The King (1980), The […]

Death to Life Day

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A lot of people my age have vague memories of a Star Wars holiday special back from some time in the 1970s, but beyond that their memories go blurry. Maybe they recall it had something or other to do with wookies, but specifics are difficult to drag up from the recesses of the mind — […]

“Rankin / Bass’s The Thing”

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Trailer for Rankin / Bass’s The Thing. (Also, please enjoy The Thing re-enacted with G.I. Joe action figures).

“When Little Joe The Krampus Met”

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Friend of the Gutter K.A. Laity has created a digital chapbook of her festive Krampusnacht story, “When Little Joe The Krampus Met, A Cautionary Tale.” Read the pdf or listen here.

“The Truth About Krampus”

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At Atlas Obscura, Al Ridenour writes about the Krampus, Krampusse, Perchten and LA’s upcoming Krampusfest.

Haunted History

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Just in time for Halloween, The Gutter’s own Keith Allison explores haunted history in New York City; Louisville, KY; Centralia, PA; London, UK; and Sydney, Australia at his website, Teleport City.

Rain City Superheroes at May Day

Seattle’s superhero community is planning on attending May Day demonstrations, just in case. Here’s footage from superhero Phoenix Jones’ Phoenix cam at last year’s demonstrations. Update: Report and footage from May Day, 2013

50 Wonderful Things in 2012

Linda Holmes shares 50 wonderful things at NPR’s Monkey See blog.

Krampus Papercraft!

Make yourself two little Krampusse just in time for Krampusnacht! Krampus 1 and Krampus 2.

John Carpenter’s Halloween

At Funny Or Die, John Carpenter presents, “John Carpenter’s Halloween!”

Things That Go Bump In The Night

(No, I don’t mean that kind of bump. Sheesh.  You people.) Given the timing of this column, and its proximity to Halloween, it seemed logical to write about the spooky side of Romance.  But it was a little harder than I thought to put together a reading list.  I wanted to concentrate on books that […]

“Cool Guys: The Ballad of Astron-6″

Spectactularoptical interviews the gentlemen of the Canadian genre film making collective, Astron-6, and includes a retrospective–with video!

“Sometimes It Doesn’t Get Better”

In discussing Astron-6′s horror movie, Father’s Day, Dave Pace notes that what seems to make viewers uncomfortable is not the violence but the nudity, the male nudity.  “What I don’t understand is the uncomfortable shifting around and the outright revulsion you will hear for the scenes where you just see regular naked men. I also […]

Auld Lang Syne

John Hodgman telepathically communicates the meaning of, “Auld Lang Syne.”

Comics-Themed Cocktails

Comics Alliance‘s Chris Sims has concocted his own comics-themed cocktails, including a comments section cocktail for comics fans.

“Merry Xmas from Chiron Beta Prime”

Jonathan Coulton’s “Merry Christmas from Chiron Beta Prime” rocks in ASL, as performed by Stephen Torrence.

A Very Kaiju Christmas!

Some Kaijutastic Christmas displays–prominently featuring Godzilla!

In Honor of Amps that Go to 11

The Monkey See blog celebrates Nigel Tufnel Day with a serious consideration of “the greatest rock and roll record ever made: 1984′s soundtrack for the movie This Is Spinal Tap.”

Posada Documentary

A complete short documentary on the brilliant Mexican illustrator and satirist, Jose Guadalupe Posada from the Academic Film Archive. It includes both his calavera (or skeleton) and non-calavera prints.

Pumpkin Zombie Sculpture

A gallery of pictures of Ray Villafane’s incredible zombie pumpkin sculpture for the New York Botanical Garden.

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  • Of Note Elsewhere

    At Graveyard Shift Sisters, Ashlee Blackwell looks at “Cinema’s Black Women Werewolves.” “At first viewed as monstrous, a deeper look would allow some semblance of compassion as horror films have originated in giving the monster character outside of its supposed and/or actual threat. Here, I wanted to look at two contrasts of the Black female as a werewolf to help us consider past attempts and possibly encourage future narratives.”

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    Three articles on the end of “gamer” as an identity, on the end of gatekeeping and the end of gaming culture: Leigh Alexander at Gamasutra; Dr. Nerdlove; and Dan Golding. “And the sad thing is: nobody’s trying to destroy games.

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    The Gutter’s own Keith writes about The Gangs of Wasseypur for Teleport City. “But more than that, Gangs of Wasseypur isn’t a potential Bollywood cross-over hit because it isn’t a Bollywood film. If anything, it is the antithesis of a Bollywood movie….Gangs of Wasseypur dwells in the spaces Bollywood does not want to show. The mines, the scrap yards, the slums, perhaps most fittingly an abattoir streaked with grime and blood and offal (not all of it from slaughtered animals). Rather than being a slick fantasy world, Wasseypur takes place in a world that screams, ‘No one gets out of here alive.’”

    And The Times of India writes about the real life gangs of Wasseypur here.

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    A gallery of Fan Ho’s photos of Hong Kong from the book, Fan Ho: A Hong Kong Memoir. (Thanks, Clarice!)

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    A gallery of Medieval European beasts and creatures who can’t even.

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    At Badass Digest, Gaming Editor Andrew Todd writes about “rampant issues with sexism, homophobia, and racism within the gaming industry.”

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