Ye Olde Christmas Magazine Ads

All of these were taken from ads in the 1950s and most came from LIFE magazine.

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Aww, look at those loveable little scamps sitting atop of the stairs. But why are they spying on their parents and other guests drinking 7-Up when they have their own bottles?

Man, I’d love to get my hands on that bottle case.

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Dutch Masters Cigars

Conflicted about this one. The scene depicted is so peaceful and serene… the artwork is phenomenal, but do you know what ruins it? It’s an ad for cigars! There’s some nice sentiment being said down at the bottom but then they get back to pitching cigars. Perhaps it the store was a toy shop or drug store instead of a tobacco store, I would feel compelled enough to share this one on my Facebook feed or make it my desktop background.

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Six Spectacularly Spooky Spider-Man Villains!

spiderWhy only six? Well, because I need sequel material for Halloween Scream 2016, that’s why! Besides, the alliteration works.

Just like Batman, Spider-Man has all kinds of kooky and gimmicky foes. Both characters seem to excel in attraction villains that would fit right in a horror movie or at a Halloween costume party. Here’s a handful of spooky Spider-villains that are dressed for Halloween all year ’round!

Green_goblin2Green Goblin

Well, might as well start off with the most obvious one! The Green Goblin has been a thorn in Spider-Man’s side since 1964. Variations of the costume have come and gone, as have the characters behind the mask, but the original version seen above (with both Norman and Norman Osborn donning this look) is iconic. Absolutely perfect design for a villain and perfect for Halloween! C’mon, the guy rides a Goblin Glider and throws pumpkin bombs!

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Abbott & Costello Meet the Monsters Collection [DVD Review]


Abbott & Costello Meet the Monsters Collection
2015, Universal Studios Home Entertainment

Buy the collection

This is a two-disc collection featuring Abbott and Costello Meet Frankenstein (1948), Abbott and Costello Meet the Invisible Man (1951), Abbott and Costello Meet Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde (1953), and Abbott and Costello Meet the Mummy (1955).

While I already owned the Frankenstein movie as a part of the Frankenstein Legacy set, it’s good to see all of these movies in one collection. They’ve all been available on DVD previously but in various other box sets. Surprisingly, these four movies were collected and released on Laser Disc in 1994 under the exact same title as part of a 3-disc set!

What I wish they would’ve included was Abbott and Costello Meet the Killer, Boris Karloff. I know it’s not based on a Universal Monster, but it is a Universal horror comedy and features Universal’s most popular horror icon. Seems like a no-brainer to have included it here as a bonus movie. 1941’s Hold That Ghost would’ve been another good choice for Abbott & Costello horror comedy completists!

Anyway, if you want my thoughts on the Mummy movie, click here. As for the rest, it’s a case of diminishing returns. The Frankenstein movie is rightfully considered a comedy classic. It’s good but it does make me a bit sad to see the monsters played for laughs. It’s almost like it’s mocking them. I don’t consider this canon at all in the Universal Monsters universe!

When Abbott & Costello meet the Invisible Man and Dr. Jekyll/Mr. Hyde but affairs are passable but nothing exceptional. At least …Meet Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde features Boris Karloff in the role of Dr. Jekyll. Unfortunately, it was a stuntman who played the role of Mr. Hyde. Also, that film seemed a bit more straight-forward. There were long scenes that didn’t feature Abbott or Costello (unless I missed it, I don’t think they appeared until 10 minutes or so into the movie) and the jokes were sparse.

By the way, it’s interesting to note that the only time Universal took a crack at Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde was in an Abbott & Costello movie. Then again, seems like every studio but Universal had tried some variation of the novel, so maybe that’s why Universal had stayed away.

I like to imagine that if the comedy duo’s popularity hadn’t dwindled and Universal hadn’t dropped them, we’d probably have gotten Bud and Lou interacting with the likes of the Phantom of the Opera and the Creature from the Black Lagoon, but it wasn’t meant to be.

The Frankenstein movie is essential viewing while the rest are merely a decent way to waste your time, but I can’t imagine any hardcore Universal Monster fan (such as myself) not wanting to have any of these movies in their collection.

Creature from the Black Lagoon: Complete Legacy Collection [DVD Review]


Creature from the Black Lagoon: Complete Legacy Collection
2014, Universal Studios Home Entertainment

This two-disc, three movie collection is a reissue of 2004’s Creature from the Black Lagoon: The Legacy Collection. I’m completely okay with that because the original run of the Universal Monsters Legacy sets have been out of print for quite some time. The only sets I didn’t buy when they were first released were of The Mummy and Creature from the Black Lagoon. I snagged a used copy of the original Mummy set a few years back but the Creature set is usually around $30 used, so I held off. Luckily, Universal re-released the sets last year and I picked up this Creature set for $10 at Walmart.

With all of these new Legacy releases, I’m fairly certain everything has remained the same (movies, special features, etc.). They’ve just received new packaging and aren’t trying to promote that Hugh Jackman Van Helsing movie anymore.


Creature from the Black Lagoon

It’s weird how the Gill-Man/creature monster ended up lumped in with the classic Universal Monsters of the 20’s, 30’s and 40’s. Post-Wolfman, Universal introduced a series of monsters that never really caught on (the Ape Woman, the Brute Man, Night Monster, She-Wolf of London, the Mad Ghoul, etc.). This was probably because they were B-movie characters and treated as such.

By the mid 1940s, the Universal Monsters craze had died down once again and by the early 1950s, the only thing keeping them in the limelight were a series of horror comedies starring Abbott & Costello. That is, until Creature from the Black Lagoon came along. It’s much more in the vein of your typical 50s monster movie of the era, but it’s still entertaining and features great underwater scenes and an amazing costume design for the Gill-Man. It also helped that the movie employed that new-fangled 3-D technique.

A personal highlight for me is seeing the gorgeous Julia Bond in a swimsuit!

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Horror Movie Mini-Reviews!: From Beyond, City of the Living Dead, Critters and The Innkeepers


Quite obviously with it being October, I’ve made it my mission to watch as many horror movies as possible. Sometimes I may really like them and feel like I need to devote an entire post to them. Other times, I may not have much to say but still want to document that I at least watched them! That’s what this post is for. Here’s a handful of horror movies that I’ve recently watched but don’t feel warrant their own individual entries.

Here’s a few quick thoughts on them. Continue reading

Emerald Coast Con 2015

This past weekend was the first-ever Emerald Coast Con. It’s technically an all gen gaming convention but it mostly focuses on retro gaming. There was a vendor room, a free play arcade room, a retro console room, a panel room and then a giant tournament room with all kinds of fighting games and shooters were being played.

I happened to win a free weekend pass on Facebook months ago, but was only able to attend the show on Saturday. That worked out fine for me because The Game Chasers and The Gaming Historian were both doing their panels on Saturday. I don’t like crowds, so after getting there around 10:30am and hanging out and seeing the Game Chasers panel and buying a few games, I was pretty exhausted and ready to go home.

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Jay, Billy and Melvor from the Game Chasers

Most game vendors there were selling NES, SNES and Genesis games. I’m not up on all the prices, so I probably got ripped off a bit, but it was all in the spirit of supporting the gaming community and the event itself was being put on for charity.

I didn’t take many pictures. This was a decent but small event but I hope it was profitable and there is as second year. This area can definitely use more events like this. With the success of the all-geek PensaCon, I’m happy to see my town of Fort Walton Beach get it’s own geek con.

Here’s what I bought:
20151024_154017Undoubtedly, this is the big prize for me. While I don’t have my NES anymore (left it and all my games behind by accident after breaking up with a girlfriend), I was more than happy to buy a COMPLETE IN BOX edition of TMNT II: The Arcade Game on the NES. One of my favorite games of all time and it includes two extra stages that aren’t in the arcade game.


Another big score for me was picking up Baseball Stars. Another of my favorites. Just need the box now! The only thing I didn’t like was that the vendor I bought this from was pretty shady. He had a box of manuals that were separate from the games. I found the game and was looking on the off-chance the manual was in there. When I brought my items to buy, he says “Oh, you found the manual”. Of course the manual cost me extra.


I don’t think I’ve ever played this game. I know it’s pretty terrible. I only wanted it because it’s Rambo and I love Rambo / Sylvester Stallone. It was only $5.


If you ever had a NES, you probably had twenty copies of this mini poster. They came with virtually ever game. Funny how now it feels like something I need to own after having so many as a kid back when I felt they were worthless.

Anyway, that’s all I bought. I’m hoping for bigger names and more vendors next year. I’d like to see some action figure vendors brought in!

Halloween Hot Wheels!

After a stressful day at work, I headed to K-Mart where I knew they had all of their Christmas decorations out. I needed to be among Star Wars ornaments, white rotating fake Christmas trees, holiday appropriate hand towels and bronze stocking holders in order to sooth my soul and find peace once again.

My hike through their Christmas section lead me to the toys where I found two Hot Wheels not like the others…



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