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Summons

We sat in a circle, each of us with a half dead thing in our hands. We had tried to bring them to life on our own. Injecting our own souls, tears and blood into them. But there they were limp, ragged and useless. We hoped that through our shared experience, chanting psalms of encouragement and judgement, one or two of them might see life. There was a time, each of us thought ourselves invincible, that our creations would unfurl to take this world into a new age of darkness with us as its dark lord. We forsaken writers wept.

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In The Shadow of the Mountain Released!

Cover by Jon Claeton

The quiet town of Kodiak Lake is great place for snowmobiling and ice fishing. It’s a picturesque Adirondack village that’s a destination location for a select type of winter lover. But something is wrong in the Adirondack mountains. Some people have begun acting oddly, and others are terrified. What stalks the winter wonderland seeking refuge inside the residents of this sleepy town, and what is watching from the shadows with far too many eyes?

Check out the interview with Reed below, and purchase a digital copy of the book below that!

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Reed Alexander’s Horror Review of ‘Residue’ (2017)

Time is an illusion, your life is meaningless and nothing is real.

Kicking off out last Lovecraftian horror before the release of my new novella “In the Shadow of the Mountain,” already available for pre-order, we’ll look at an absolute fantastic b-rated Lovecraftian style movie, that is creepy, cerebral, and silly. Order it here!

Continue reading Reed Alexander’s Horror Review of ‘Residue’ (2017)
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The Girl Next Door

You and an older fellow sit in small room with a big box with lots of switches on it. You both draw a slip of paper from a hat. You get to ask the questions. The older guy gets to answer them. The scientist walks you both into the adjacent room. The older guy is sat in a chair and strapped to a bunch of electrodes. The idea is that you are going to ask him paired words from the room with the big box. He answers them. When he answers correctly, nothing happens. When he answers wrong, you punch one of the switches and give him a shock. Those shocks increase in voltage until he yells out that he has a heart condition and wishes to stop the study. The scientist tells you it’s okay to keep going because the shocks hurt but don’t cause any damage. You keep doing the study until he reach the last switch which you believe delivered enough electricity to kill the man in the other room. 

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American Cult, Part One: The Empty Places

Next month, Madness Heart Press will release American Cult, an anthology of stories of alternative history and distinctly American horror. It includes my short story, “stuffed,” and to celebrate, this is the first installment of a three-part examination of horror that has been molded by the American experience; a look at the empty places. Continue reading American Cult, Part One: The Empty Places

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Reed Alexander’s Horror Review of ‘The Void’ (2016)

A Void of Strong Women Characters

Let me just start out by saying, there was a LOT about this movie that was testing my fucking patience. It really prayed on “Weaker Sex Syndrome” far too often, and for a hot second, I could swear they were doing “Gladiator Moments.” There was scene after scene of what seemed like completely unrelated artsy bullshit. Thank god I was wrong about that because I really wanted to like this movie just from the premise.

In the end, the random moments of esoteric bullshit did get tied in nicely and the movie almost (note that’s ALMOST) redeemed the “Weaker Sex Syndrome.” I guess I have to give them credit for trying, as it’s more than most in the industry do these days.

But here’s the thing. There are very few Lovecraftian movies that did the feel of the genre justice without getting into the artsy silent films. There was YellowBrickRoadIn the Mouth of MadnessColor from the Dark, and, of course Lord of Illusions (LOI), which this movie very much reminded me of. The one thing that LOI had that this didn’t was the mystery aspect of Lovecraft. The search for truth leading to the discovery of madness. That’s sort of essential to the Lovecraft genre and The Void picks up after that pretty much already over and done with.

Still this movie had amazing atmosphere, a storyline that was coherent, which is hard for this genre, character development that was somewhat decent, and acting that was pretty good, even for horror… so why did I almost stop watching?

SPOILERS!!!

JESUS FUCKING CHRIST THE IRRATIONAL WOMEN IN THIS FUCKING MOVIE!!! They cast all the female roles in this movie pretty much just to drive the plot by being completely fucking useless or even worse, idiotic. If it wasn’t the nurse’s assistant breaking down into hysterics every five fucking minutes, it was the headstrong independent woman who you KNOW is gonna Lois Lane herself into being the damsel in fucking distress. Then there’s the country bumpkin pregnant girl who is only in this movie to give birth to a tentacle beast. Fucking seriously? Where are my Ripleys? Where are my Black Widows? Where are the women at? You know? The real women with active grey matter who drive the plot by being a part of the story, not by being fucking “McGuffins With Legs.”

And the fucking main character. Jesus fucking Christ, it’s like he spends the first fucking 20 minutes either unconscious or getting the shit kicked out of him. Isn’t he supposed to be a fucking cop? I mean, I get that they wanted him to be portrayed as a dweeb, but FUCK. Every five minutes for the first 20 minutes, he either gets knocked the fuck out or faints. Look, he had to have some kind of training, right? Self-defense? Boxing? How the fuck did this guy even become a cop?!

So why did I like this movie? Fuck man, I’m not even sure. The beginning is rough and poorly conceived, but the rest is so captivating.

It’s not just the fact it’s a creature feature with tentacle beasts. I do love a good creature feature, but there was more in this. Now, as you can tell by me complaining about the three “McGuffins With Legs,” a lot of the story is forced. But it always leaves just enough for intrigue. You can’t just ignore the fact that the movie starts off with a cult surrounding a hospital, trapping everyone inside and just slowly erodes from there. You find out quickly that this all has something to do with the bumpkin’s baby. It starts out as s simple struggle for survival, but then the mystery starts to kick in.

Once you get through the bullshit, and the bullshit is livable, it’s actually amazing.

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Reed Alexander’s Horror Review of ‘The Void’ (2016)

Let me just start out by saying, there was a LOT about this movie that was testing my fucking patience. It really prayed on “Weaker Sex Syndrome” far too often, and for a hot second, I could swear they were doing “Gladiator Moments.” There was scene after scene of what seemed like completely unrelated artsy bullshit. Thank god I was wrong about that because I really wanted to like this movie just from the premise.

In the end, the random moments of esoteric bullshit did get tied in nicely and the movie almost (note that’s ALMOST) redeemed the “Weaker Sex Syndrome.” I guess I have to give them credit for trying, as it’s more than most in the industry do these days.

But here’s the thing. There are very few Lovecraftian movies that did the feel of the genre justice without getting into the artsy silent films. There was YellowBrickRoadIn the Mouth of MadnessColor from the Dark, and, of course Lord of Illusions (LOI), which this movie very much reminded me of. The one thing that LOI had that this didn’t was the mystery aspect of Lovecraft. The search for truth leading to the discovery of madness. That’s sort of essential to the Lovecraft genre and The Void picks up after that pretty much already over and done with.

Still this movie had amazing atmosphere, a storyline that was coherent, which is hard for this genre, character development that was somewhat decent, and acting that was pretty good, even for horror… so why did I almost stop watching?

SPOILERS!!!

JESUS FUCKING CHRIST THE IRRATIONAL WOMEN IN THIS FUCKING MOVIE!!! They cast all the female roles in this movie pretty much just to drive the plot by being completely fucking useless or even worse… idiotic. If it wasn’t the nurse’s assistant breaking down into hysterics every five fucking minutes, it was the headstrong independent woman who you KNOW is gonna Lois Lane herself into being the damsel in fucking distress. Then there’s the country bumpkin pregnant girl who is only in this movie to give birth to a tentacle beast. Fucking seriously? Where are my Ripleys? Where are my Black Widows? Where are the women at? You know? The real women with active grey matter who drive the plot by being a part of the story, not by being fucking “McGuffins With Legs.”

And the fucking main character. Jesus fucking Christ, it’s like he spends the first fucking 20 minutes either unconscious or getting the shit kicked out of him. Isn’t he supposed to be a fucking cop? I mean, I get that they wanted him to be portrayed as a dweeb, but FUCK. Every five minutes for the first 20 minutes, he either gets knocked the fuck out or faints. Look, he had to have some kind of training, right? Self-defense? Boxing? How the fuck did this guy even become a cop?!

So why did I like this movie? Fuck man, I’m not even sure. The beginning is rough and poorly conceived, but the rest is so captivating.

It’s not just the fact it’s a creature feature with tentacle beasts. I do love a good creature feature, but there was more in this. Now, as you can tell by me complaining about the three “McGuffins With Legs,” a lot of the story is forced. But it always leaves just enough for intrigue. You can’t just ignore the fact that the movie starts off with a cult surrounding a hospital, trapping everyone inside and just slowly erodes from there. You find out quickly that this all has something to do with the bumpkin’s baby. It starts out as s simple struggle for survival, but then the mystery starts to kick in.

Once you get through the bullshit, and the bullshit is livable, it’s actually amazing.

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Review: Clive Barker’s ‘Books of Blood’

When Clive Barker’s Books of Blood began their publication in 1984, it would be fair to say that Stephen King had already reinvented horror as a popular genre. Throughout the 1970s and early 1980s, King had published more than a dozen novels. Still, even Stephen King himself viewed the publication of the Books as a watershed moment for horror: it was the Books of Blood that led King to famously call Clive Barker “the future of horror.”
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