Friday, May 30, 2008

Harvey Korman - RIP

For a period of time, Harvey Korman was a member of one of the funniest comedy ensembles on tv as part of The Carol Burnett Show. I, along with millions of other folks loved to tune in each week to see how Mr. Korman and the others were going to make us [and each other] laugh. In fact that was one of the joys of the show, seeing the cast members attempt to not crack up as they played out their scenes. Mr. Korman won four Emmys for his work on the show.

After leaving The Carol Burnett Show, Mr. Korman went on to make other guest appearances in movies and tv. Mel Brooks used Harvey Korman regularly because every time Mr. Korman appeared on screen he made things at the very least just a bit funnier. Here's a link to a classic bit with Mr. Korman from The Carol Burnett Show plus a photo tribute.

Our thoughts and prayers go out to his family, friends and fans.

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Kimbo: the Face of MMA?

This weekend there are two nights of MMA action available to fans. On Saturday night CBS teams with EliteXC and jumps into the mix with Kimbo Slice headlining a card that also features a female MMA fighter. Sunday Jens Pulver challenges Urijah Faber for his World Extreme Cagefighting featherweight title belt on the VS channel.

There's no doubt that I plan to tune in both nights. I'm a fan of MMA fighting and will enjoy the bouts. Saturday night my guess is a lot of folks who aren't already MMA fans will tune in to see what all the fuss is about. Thinking along those lines I planned a post about why Kimbo shouldn't become the face of MMA, but why he might be [at least for a while]. Then I read Dan Wetzel's column today and realized that he said everything I planned to and more.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Will It Blend? aka Don't Blend Me, Bro!

This dude has created a blender that will blend anything. I mean anything. Golf Balls? Check. Marbles? Check. Magnets? Check. A baseball? Check. A one million volt taser? Check. Chuck Norris? Well... almost anything. [Thanks to Mike for the tip!]

Monday, May 26, 2008

The Black Sleep

Last night I was in the mood for an old-time horror movie. But what to watch? How about one starring Basil [Sherlock Holmes] Rathbone [as the mad scientist], Lon [The Wolfman] Chaney, Jr. [as one of the monsters], Bela [Dracula] Lugosi [as Rathbone's assistant], John [Dracula] Carradine [as a madman] and Tor ["Plan 9 from Outer Space] Johnson [as another monster]? Yep, "The Black Sleep" fit the bill perfectly!

What, you've never heard of "The Black Sleep"? I wouldn't be surprised. Unless you're a real aficionado of the horror genre, you probably haven't. I guess that's what makes it a cult film. The sad thing is, "The Black Sleep" is one of the better low-budget 50's horror films. So let's take a look at it...

The Pitch: "Frankenstein" meets "The Island of Doctor Moreau." A mad scientist [Rathbone] frames a former student [Herbert Rudley] for murder and then helps him escape the gallows. In return Rudley must help Rathbone with his evil experiments which turn his subjects into monsters.

The Good: The movie is introduced by Lon Madnight! Having Lugosi [in his final role] along with Chaney, Carradine, Johnson and Rathbone sharing screen-time is a hoot for any horror fan. Akim Tamiroff as Odo the Gypsy steals every scene he's in. The screenplay is more complex than most of the genre -- we have the mad scientist performing evil experiments, but he does so in hopes of learning a way to save his dying wife -- we have a framed hero who must solve a murder mystery in order to clear his name -- we have monsters chained in hidden cells below the castle, but they are victims of Rathbone's experiments -- at the same time the police are following leads leading to... a great climax with the monsters breaking free just as... ah, but that would be giving it away! [Be sure to keep watching after "The End" credit appears -- there's an added bonus!]

The Bad: What the experiments do to the subjects! Poor Bela is regulated to the role of a mute assistant -- he was in terrible health in his final days. The hero's name is Gordon Ramsay [and yes, it reminded me of him.]

The Ugly: Tor Johnson, Lon Chaney and the rest of the monsters! Also there's a great scare with a beautiful girl who's suddenly revealed to be one of the monsters!

In Summary: "The Black Sleep" is a welcome addition to any horror fan's library. The transfer is crisp and clean with excellent sound. The disc also includes trailers for other films in the AC DVD library [some you can see HERE], as well as the first chapter of a Blackhawk cliffhanger serial. "The Black Sleep" is another winner from Bill Black and AC DVD.

Sunday, May 25, 2008

UFC 84 Results

UFC 84: Ill Will lived up to the hype. The three main fights were all worthy of their headline status. Let's take a look at them and the results:

  • BJ Penn vs. Sean Sherk for the lightweight championship. BJ and Sherk were both in great shape. I thought it would be a great fight and it was. Although most predicted a BJ win by submission, the fight turned into a stand up slugfest! Neither man was willing to back down. BJ got the better of Sherk in the first two rounds, but Sherk kept it close. In the third round it appeared that Sherk may have hurt his right hand because he wasn't throwing it with conviction and seemed to be favoring it. At the very end of the round, Penn landed a solid punch that sent Sherk back into the cage. BJ immediately followed with a running knee to the head and Sherk went down. BJ rained blows as the ref stood by ready to stop the fight -- and the round ended. There was immediate confusion as BJ walked around the ring in apparent victory. Then we learned that Sherk's corner called the fight. When both fighters met in the center of the ring for the decision, each praised the other. A great ending to a great fight.
  • Wanderlei Silva vs. Keith Jardine. I predicted it to be the slugfest of the night and it was.. Both men came out throwing bombs. Jardine was KO'd despite landing some of his own.

  • Tito Ortiz vs. Lyoto Machida. When the two met in the center of the cage, the bad blood with Dana White no longer mattered. It was two of the best fighters in the weight class ready to wage war. Machida fought the entire fight backing up which is his style. Tito was willing to fight standing up, and it was a good thing because he just couldn't get Machida down. Although Tito pressured the fight, Machida landed better counter-punches and at times made Tito look bad. In the third round, and with Tito way behind on the scorecards both fighters ended up on the mat. With just seconds left in the fight, Tito locked in a triangle choke. To Machida's credit he continued to fight and roll, and to Tito's credit he rolled with Machida holding on to the choke... unfortunately the new position allowed Marchida to come out as the bell sounded the end of the fight. Machida won by decision but Tito showed he still has more fights in him.
Next week it's Kimbo Slice on CBS!

Saturday, May 24, 2008

Rambo Collector's Set Contest

On Tuesday, May 27th, for the first time, LIONSGATE will release all four Rambo films together in Rambo: The Complete Collector’s Set. To celebrate the release of these great action movies, LIONSGATE has provided me with three sets to award to three lucky winners.

The contest is being run through my StalloneZone site. Click HERE to learn more about it!

Friday, May 23, 2008

UFC 84 Predictions

Tomorrow night the UFC presents UFC 84: Ill Will. This is the first MMA fight card in a while that I've been excited about. There are three fights that really interest me. Let's take a look at them and my predictions.

  • BJ Penn vs. Sean Sherk for the lightweight championship. BJ won the title when Sherk was stripped of it for alleged steroid use. Now Sherk is back and he wants his title. This could be a great fight. Most folks are leaning towards BJ by submission, and he should win, but to keep things interesting I just may throw down a dollar on Sherk if I can get the right odds.
  • Wanderlei Silva vs. Keith Jardine. This should be the slugfest of the night. Both men will probably come out throwing bombs. Whoever lands best wins. Pretty simple, huh? I'm going with Jardine by KO.

  • Tito Ortiz vs. Lyoto Machida. One of the things that makes this fight so interesting is the stuff going on behind the scenes of the fight. Tito and UFC head honcho, Dana White, have bad blood. This is Tito's last fight under his current UFC contract. Dana wants Tito to leave with a loss so he's matched him up against Machida, an undefeated (12-0) rising star. Tito wants to put down Dana's golden boy before leaving the UFC for greener pastures. Styles make fights and this one is tough to call. Tito needs the takedown to be most effective. Machida likes to fight backing up. He's a counter-puncher. I hate to go against Tito, but I'm thinking the edge goes to Machida by decision.

Paul Gulacy Speaks!

Paul Gulacy was the artist on some of my all time favorite comics. You can hear an interview with Paul here. It's worth the listen.

Jock Layin' the Smackdown

Chris Mills [the creator of one of my all-time favorite crime comics, Gravedigger] wrote yesterday about being a fan of Jock Mahoney. Nearly a year ago I posted about Jock being a guest at OrlandoCon and how I was lucky enough to appear on stage with him. Then I remembered that my buddy Bill Black had sent me a photo of Jock giving me a knuckle-sandwich. So thanks to Chris for tweaking my memory and Bill for forwarding the picture.

PS - Regular ZONErs can probably guess who it is sitting under all that curly hair. LOL!

Wednesday, May 21, 2008


Most of the music I listen to is from the 70's. Don't get me wrong, I like some music from most genres and time periods, but it's not often that I hear a current song that grabs me. Mercy by singer/songwriter Duffy grabs me. If you've heard it, it probably grabbed you too. If you haven't heard it, click HERE and prepare to be touched.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Checkin' in with the Walking Dead

The Walking Dead continues to be my favorite regularly published comic. You can read an interview with Walking Dead creator and writer Robert Kirkman HERE or artist Charlie Adlard HERE.

Monday, May 19, 2008

Updated Strain

Although I thought the original movie was alright, and this poster doesn't do much for me, I am looking forward to the new mini-series which will premiere on A&E.

This Poster is Not Happening

Although I'm looking forward to "The Happening" I'm really not overly thrilled with this poster for it.

Sunday, May 18, 2008

The Brute Man

I recently watched "The Brute Man" as the second part of the double feature dvd "M is for Madman". "M is for Madman" is the third in Bill Blacks' Crypt of Horror series which takes us back to the days when drive-in movies and late night horror hosts were two of the things that made weekends so much fun. "M is for Madman" features "The Man Who Turned to Stone" and "The Brute Man" hosted by Lon Madnight.

Lon Madnight
is our horror host. He appears before and after each film to provide insightful trivia about the movie to be seen and later leave us with some final thoughts and a chuckle or two. He's exactly what's needed in a horror host. The production values on the dvd are top notch. The films are crisp and clear with excellent sound. The movies can be seen without the Lon Madnight openings and closings, but they're so much fun, who'd want to miss them? Priced at less than twenty bucks for two remastered movies and Lon Midnight -- you'd be hard pressed to find a cheaper evening of family fun.

I reviewed "The Man Who Turned to Stone" here, so let's take a look at "The Brute Man"...

The Pitch: "Frankenstein" meets "The Dark Man" set in the 1940s. A star high school football player is left disfigured by a practical joke and years later comes back for revenge.

The Good: The movie moves at a brisk pace. All of the cliches of the genre can be found here: spinning newspapers with headlines updating us on what we've just seen, the blind girl who doesn't know she's harboring the killer, a huge disfigured monster who walks the streets at night and easily escapes the cops after each murder... and there's even some comic relief with the chief of police and city commissioners. And let's not forget Rondo Hattan.

The Bad: How The Creeper kills his victims - he breaks their backs!

The Ugly: The Creeper.

The Summary: There are a couple of things that will make this a must own dvd for fans of the genre:

1] It was produced by Universal Pictures, so completists will want it for their collection to place along side "Frankenstein," "Dracula," etc.

2] It stars Rondo Hatton as the monster. Hattan suffered from acromegaly, a disease which caused abnormal growth of his hands, feet, and face. Because of the disfigurement caused by the disease, makeup wasn't needed for Hattan. Most reports attribute the onset of this disease to Hattan's exposure to mustard gas in World War I. Hattan is somewhat of a legend among horror buffs and even has a horror award named after him!

Trivia: Janelle Johson had a supporting role in the film. Her biggest claim to fame is probably that she is the mother of Mickey Dolenz of The Monkees!

If you'd like to see a clip of the first three minutes of "The Brute Man" click HERE. If you'd like more information about the dvd then click HERE.

Saturday, May 17, 2008

Never Knew Hitler Could Sing

I knew he was a failed artist, but I never knew Hitler could sing! [And a hearty "Danka" to Brandon Peterson for the link.]

Friday, May 16, 2008

We Have a Winner!

I visit a lot of blogs daily. Rod Lott's Bookgasm is one of them. I enjoy his reviews - he's turned me on to some very good books. He also runs contests and I enter the ones that have prizes that I think I'd enjoy. Guess who was just named the winner of a copy of Indiana Jones: The Ultimate Guide? Yep. Big ole me.

You'll have a chance at the next contest if you start reading his site... not that I want the competition.

Hellboy II Poster a Hit has a poster that I can get behind. Click on this link and see the Hellboy II poster!

Thursday, May 15, 2008

What 'Cha Watching?

I just read today that "Back to You" the FOX comedy starring Kelsey Grammer was cancelled. My guess is that most of you never caught an episode since low ratings killed it. I thought it was one of the funniest shows on and was surprised to find that it wouldn't be brought back. It was really well written with an ensemble cast that meshed. I guess I should have posted about "Back to You" when it might have helped.

I was happy to see that "Boston Legal" and "Medium" have both been given the greenlight for new seasons. I've yet to see an episode of either show that let me down. "Til Death" is another show that I don't miss. I can't recommend it as unconditionally as "Boston Legal" or "Medium" but it does have it's moments.

Of course my wife and I still watch "Survivor" [yeah, I think I WILL GIVE UP THE IMMUNITY NECKLACE!] and "American Idol" [which David will win? -- my guess is Archuleta]. I'm still in front of the set each week when "The Ultimate Fighter" airs, but I think this season lacks a bit of the drama. Maybe it's because they have two fights each episode and we don't get to know enough about the fighters' backgrounds. My newest favorite show is "Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives" which comes to us from the FOOD NETWORK. And you just know that I still dvr episodes of "The Wild, Wild West" off of RTN.

So, what am I missing?

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Not as Scary

For some reason, THIS doesn't seem as scary as it did THEN.

Monday, May 12, 2008

Sammy Terry

Here is a link to about 20 minutes of Sammy Terry from the early 80's. Of course I started watching Sammy when he premiered in the early 60's out of Indianapolis when I was but a child. You can imagine how spooky he seemed in black and white. [That's right youngsters, there was a time when television shows weren't broadcast in living color.]

I don't guess you'll watch the entire clip, but if you do you'll see ads for used cars, Billy Graham, a brand new $350 VCR, John McEnroe, Cowboy Bob and a bunch of other stuff... but Sammy Terry is the reason to click on the link.

Sunday, May 11, 2008

Stoked for QoS

I loved the James Bond reboot, Casino Royale with Daniel Craig as Bond. As I walked out of the theater I was ready, right then, for Craig to do another round as 007. So I was excited when a new Bond film was announced. Then the title and teaser poster were leaked and I was left feeling a bit less excited. has posted quite a few pictures from the filming of QoS and I have to admit I'm starting to feel more stoked about it. Maybe you will too, if you check out the photos.

Saturday, May 10, 2008

Checkin' in with the Jazzman

It's been a while since we checked in on my buddy, Ernest "Jazzman" Resendes. Jazz is always working on something involving his creative talents. He's an artist, musician, actor, director and more. Jazz's latest video is a spooky, hypnotic combination of all his talents. You can see more of Jazzman's art here.

Wednesday, May 07, 2008

Moon Nazis

I hadn't heard anything about Iron Sky until just a few minutes ago. Looks like a fun concept. I hope that the movie turns out to be as good as the teaser.

Monday, May 05, 2008

Indy Now

There's no movie coming out this summer that I want to see more than Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull. Check out all these trailers and you'll get a taste of why.

Sunday, May 04, 2008

The Man Who Turned to Stone

Longtime ZONErs know how much I enjoyed watching horror/monster movies as a kid growing up in Indiana... especially those shown by late night horror host Sammy Terry. For years I've been saying that someone needs to find a horror host and run a double feature of scary movies late on Saturday night. Although, no major network has stepped up to the plate, my buddy Bill Black has released a series of dvds that fits the bill [as in black].

Last night I watched "M is for Madman" the third in Bill's Crypt of Horror series. It's a double feature of "The Man Who Turned to Stone" and "The Brute Man" hosted by Lon Madnight. Madnight [whose name is a play on "London After Midnight" - the lost, silent horror film starring Lon Chaney] maintains the perfect balance of insightful trivia about the movie to be seen and bad puns. He's just what the doctor [or at least I] ordered. The production values on the dvd are top notch. The films are crisp and clear with excellent sound. The movies can be seen without the Lon Madnight openings and closings, but they're so much fun, who'd want to miss them? Priced at less than twenty bucks for two remastered movies and Lon Midnight -- you'd be hard pressed to find a cheaper evening of family fun.

So let's take a look at "The Man Who Turned to Stone"...

The Pitch: Mad scientists run a woman's reformatory and drain the "bio-electrical" life force from inmates in order to prolong their unnatural lives.

The Good: The special effects are surprisingly well done for a low-budget film of this era. You're slowly made to realize that the people in charge of the reformatory aren't just bad, they're...

The Bad: This isn't a classic horror movie -- it's bad in all the right ways. The hero kind of looks like Lee Harvey Oswald.

The Ugly: What happens when Eric doesn't get enough "bio-electrical" life force.

The Summary: "The Man Who Turned to Stone" isn't a classic, but it's better than you'd expect given it's lack of budget and notoriety. It's exactly the kind of movie that works when you're in the mood for an old time horror movie that you haven't watched a million times. I can't wait to watch it with friends/family who love scary movies.

Saturday, May 03, 2008

Harsh Times = Bad Time

I really, really wanted to like "Harsh Times." David Ayer directed it. Ayer also wrote it. Okay, you ask, "so who is David Ayer?" He's the talented writer of such films as "Training Day," "Dark Blue," and "The Fast and the Furious" among others. Ayer also directed "Street Kings" which I really enjoyed. So even though "Harsh Times" starred Christian Bale, Freddy Rodriguez, Eva Longoria and Terry Crews [in a small role], it was Ayer who was the major selling point for me.

The Pitch: "Training Day" meets "Ferris Bueller's Day Off" without the comedy and where Ferris is an over-the-edge ex-marine.

The Good: The scene when Bale & Rodriguez attempt to sell a handgun in a Tex-Mex bar. The tension throughout the movie -- who's going to die?

The Bad: There's a lack of redeeming characters. The movie is dark, dark, dark.

The Ugly: How disappointed I am, that I didn't like the movie more.

The Summary: "Harsh Times" was too bleak for me. Good director, good cast, but without characters that I could really get behind.

Friday, May 02, 2008

Updated Links

I've updated my blog and artist links sections with a bunch of really cool sites. I'm sure that you'll find at least a couple that you'll bookmark for return visits. [Hopefully not at the expense of visits here.]