“On a verdant slope of Mount Maenalus, in Arcadia, there stands an olive grove about the ruins of a villa. Close by is a tomb, once beautiful with the sublimest sculptures, but now fallen into as great decay as the house. At one end of that tomb, its curious roots displacing the time-stained blocks of Pentelic marble, grows an unnaturally large olive tree of oddly repellent shape; so like to some grotesque man, or death-distorted body of a man, that the country folk fear to pass it at night when the moon shines faintly through the crooked boughs. Mount Maenalus is a chosen haunt of dreaded Pan, whose queer companions are many, and simple swains believe that the tree must have some hideous kinship to these weird Panisci; but an old bee-keeper who lives in the neighbouring cottage told me a different story.”
Today I am reviewing a beekeeper from the works of H. P. Lovecraft. I expect that even the most devoted fans of Lovecraft would barely remember this character, though, given that he is alluded to but twice in a minor Lovecraft story, “The Tree“. He doesn’t even do anything in the story. Basically, this story is narrated by some chump. That chump tells a story that was related to him by a beekeeper. Thus, the beekeeper is neither the narrator, nor is he actually a part of the story of the tree.
What do we know about this guy? Not much. He’s Greek. He’s old. And he knows this story. He automatically gets Two Honeycombs for being a good beekeeper (one doesn’t get to be an old beekeeper if one is not good at it, after all), but I could infer more. Maybe this beekeeper actually knows a lot more than this one story. Perhaps he knows all manner of secrets of the Lovecraftian universe and all its monsters and such. It seems entirely likely that this beekeeper is a major force in protecting humanity. Nobody out there can prove me wrong! But, unfortunately, this story also can not prove me right.
Two Honeycombs out of Five.
It’s your average workplace-set show, except the workplace is the high stakes world of professional knifefighting.
Maddy is a smart young woman who could be doing a lot of things with her life, but instead she is trying to make it in the male-dominated world of professional knifefighting. She isn’t the first woman to join the sport, but she intends to be the first to work her way up to the title of World Knifefighting Champion.
Yvonne Hale is not a knifefighter, but is the kind of person who dabbles in as many shady dealings as possible, and so she has started assembling a stable of knifefighters she sponsors in various underground fights throughout the world. She treats them well enough, not withstanding her acerbic wit, and is just kooky and rich enough to enable their outlandish ideas to raise their fame.
Sullivan is a knifefighter who takes the sport very seriously. After years of training himself to feel no pain, he has also dulled his emotions to an almost robotic point. Nonetheless, he has a bit of a crush on Maddy and doesn’t at all know how to handle it. This has been affecting his performance in the ring.
Walt is the opposite of Sullivan. He’s all emotions all the time. He was once a homeless man who was paid to knifefight by some rappers on the West Coast, but he turned out to be very good at it, so Yvonne got him under contract. In his good moods, Walt is very supportive of Maddy and is always trying to come up with ideas to raise the team’s profile, such as barbed-wire-rope-bridge matches. Audiences love him.
Evan is currently the highest-ranked fighter in Yvonne’s stable of fighters and boy is he a jerk. He is one of those “macho” guys who thinks that only men can really be good at knifefighting (and he’s also pretty racist). Maddy would live to fight him, but they both work for Yvonne. For now, Evan is just an annoyance she can use to motivate herself to be better.
Moreso than any other idea I’ve come up with so far, this show would have a jaunty 80s-sitcom-style theme song. That is a must.
Today I am thinking about a 1988 horror film, called Pulse.
Pulse is about some sort of technological entity, maybe living electricity or something, that seems to enjoy nothing more than taking over the electronics in suburban homes so as to slaughter those inside. We’re never given any kind of motivation or explanation or anything, but bad horror movies love to do bad storytelling and use the “whatever is in your imagination is scarier” excuse, so I’ll just allow it. Anyway, the protagonal victims here are this one kid* and his father and step-mother. Basically, their house tries to kill them. That’s the movie.
It isn’t a terrible movie, of course. As a fan of horror films, I have watched much worse. But it wasn’t great either I have enough trouble connecting with horror movies given that I’m not in the least afraid of the dark or of night-time. Anyone who knows me can attest, PDR thrives at night. But you know what else I am also not afraid of? Technology. Therefore, I am definitely not the target audience for a movie, the point of which is apparently “Remember, all this technology in our lives? It could kill us.” I’m a lot more off-put by the people using the tech than the tech itself.
And anyway, this movie is probably two decades too soon for a real Killer Technology House plot. Sure, lamps can overheat and start a fire and such, but the Killer Technology House in here is way too low-tech for anyone living in the 21st century. Okay, a lamp can overheat and start a fire or a hot water heater can… also overheat and cause scalding water to hurt people. Those are potentially deadly things, sure, but our houses these days are literally connected to the Internet. The Pulse Entity of 2018 could audio of it killing the kid onto the father’s phone so that the father is distracted and gets into a car accident. In 1988, the monster has to basically malfunction at the people. In 2018, it could use the technology as it is intended and still kill people. And all that without having it inexplicably lock doors that are in no way electric. Was it doing that with magnets, movie? What did I miss movie?
Also, we have electric locks now too, so we could do that too.
Anyway, in spite of my gripes, there will always be something about movies made in the 80s that I will appreciate. I don’t think it is just the time period (Though I do love the time period. I love that there was a time when calling someone a “turkey” was considered a serious insult), but there is something a quality to film of that time that I’d love to see brought into the modern era, and not just via works set in the 80s (Stranger Things).
In conclusion, I am willing to write and direct a sequel to this movie if Hollywood calls. Thank you, goodnight.
*It was not until I checked the IMDB page that I learned that the main kid was played by Joey from Blossom. Whoa. (Good reference, PDR)