Lotti Pharriss Knowles, the writer/producer of Chastity Bites, is a self-professed horror nerd, and it shows. The film, which had a midnight showing at the Dances With Films independent film festival in Hollywood on Saturday night, both honors and sends up a lot of classic horror tropes and conventions. The result is a fun, campy horror/comedy that’s both genuinely funny and genuinely scary.
Everything old is new again. Doctor Who Classics, from IDW Publishing, takes old comics, published in Doctor Who Magazine during the time of the original series, and repackages them for a new generation of Doctor Who fans. Originally printed in black and white, they’ve been colorized and given a slick, new appearance. This first issue contains two adventures of the Seventh Doctor (played by Sylvester McCoy on the show), a somewhat mysterious, though capable and determined, incarnation, identifiable by the question mark motif in his attire.
In many ways, Tales of Discord plays out like a season of the show Lost. There’s a large ensemble cast and a number of concurrent storylines. There’s a present-day plotline, which is illuminated by flashbacks to the histories and origins of the various major characters. And, most importantly, it’s confusing to follow at times . . . but still addictively entertaining.
Doctor Who Classics #2 takes another old adventure from issues of Doctor Who Magazine, colorizes it, and assembles it into comic form. "Invaders from Gantac" is a three-part arc which has the Seventh Doctor (Sylvester McCoy on the television series) stumbling into an alien invasion as only the Doctor can stumble.
It feels wrong to say that The Colonized has a lot in common with the movie Plan 9 from Outer Space, but it's technically true. The cult classic by Ed Wood has become so known for its pervasive awfulness and hilarious continuity errors that such a comparison would seem like I was saying The Colonized is somehow a bad or laughable piece. This is far from the case. But, they share some common plot points: aliens coming to Earth, finding a bunch of despicable and violence-loving humans, and resurrecting the dead.
There’s a lot of backstory to the It Girl and the Atomics saga, spanning several different series prior to this one, which provide the details of who these characters are, how they came to be, what they can do, and what their relationships are to one another. None of it really matters a whole lot to this particular issue. If you wanted to jump in with #9, with no prior knowledge of the series or the characters, you could do so without becoming too terribly lost. The only really important information is this: they’re superheroes. Everything else is pretty much incidental.
Danger Girl: Trinity #1 from IDW is pure, glorious entertainment. It has a little bit of everything: action and adventure, exotic locations, intrigue, beautiful women, fight scenes, explosions, and just a touch of humor. Combine that with a fast-paced, compelling plot, beautiful artwork, and a cliffhanger ending, and you’ve got a comic that’s just tremendously fun to read.
The Colonized #2 continues the story of the Carbon Falls Collective, a small, “off the grid” town in Montana with the incredible misfortune to be invaded by both aliens and zombies simultaneously, compounded by the incredible misfortune of having a lot of closed-minded xenophobes in its populace.
God the Dyslexic Dog is an epic story in three volumes, published over the course of several years. It’s sometimes strange, occasionally surreal, often existential, and more than a bit confusing. It spans time, from the dawn of the universe to the present, and into the future. It deals with history and myth, religion and science, God, man, animals, and everything in between. Often, it’s difficult to understand or keep track of. But, even when you have no idea where you’re going, it’s still a crazy ride and very entertaining.
Way Down in Chinatown is bizarre and often incomprehensible. Sometimes shrill and discordant, sometimes uncomfortable, and sometimes discombobulating. These aren’t criticisms of the film, merely observations. It was designed to be all of these things, and quite a bit more.