Becca’s pick- no, amazingly it wasn’t me who picked it -for Richard’s assignment this week is the gloriously enjoyable train wreck that is 1983’s The Keep. Along with John and I, we all dive into what made the movie what it is.

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Okay, so let’s set the stage for this one. Arthur Rankin Jr.- he of Rankin/Bass Productions fame -decided he wanted to creatively branch out a bit. So, after decades of becoming famous for children’s holiday specials like Santa Claus Is Comin’ to Town, Mad Monster Party, Frosty the Snowman, and variety shows like The Jackson 5ive and The Osmonds, he decided he wanted to make more adult oriented television movies with 1977’s lost world adventure The Last Dinosaur and 1978’s horror offering, The Bermuda Depths. There would also be a third film, 1980’s The Ivory Ape, but the less said about this film the better. Having had some luck working with Japanese production companies years earlier with 1967’s King Kong Escapes, and possibly because everyone else laughed at the proposals for the films, he struck a deal with a somewhat past its prime Tsuburaya Productions to handle much of the monster FX works. So, basically, you’re talking about a great recipe for total disaster.

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Some ongoing news popped its head up into the social media world this last week, and fandom suddenly felt its heart grow three sizes that day. Unfortunately, this was one of those things where fandom really needed to stop and think and maybe play the part of the Grinch a little more. Outside of seeing some interesting speculation with regards to some Marvel properties (which was what most of the people I saw salivating over this were initially talking about) I saw little about this that made me think it was a good idea. Even seeing the Marvel properties “go home” to Disney- while that could open up some interesting possibilities for the next phase of Marvel films -might not ultimately be the great thing some initially thought it could be. To be honest, perhaps the only good thing in such a deal would be straightening out a lot of the remaining issues around Star Wars: A New Hope.

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Assignment Horror returns with a look at a classic Hammer science fiction horror offering.

“John, Jerry, & Becca once again educate one Richard Ewell in the Assignment: Horror Podcast with the film Quatermass And The Pit. Find out Richard’s opinion of the film and ultimate grade that was a bit of a controversy among the group.”

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After two rather successful forays into the world of the Blind Dead, Amando de Ossorio decided to change the formula up a bit and introduce some new twists into the mythos. Not all of this worked as well as he had hoped it would. The Ghost Galleon (also more commonly known as Horror of the Zombies in the 50 films for $20 public domain movie DVD sets) would move our decaying blood drinkers out of their scenic Spanish countryside home and into a broken down vessel drifting on the ocean waves. It also tried to introduce the weird, paranormal pseudo-science that was showing up in a lot of low budget (and the occasional bigger budget) horror films of that time. The former concept was actually enjoyable on a cheesy, so bad it’s good level once the film got past all of the mumbo jumbo buildup of the latter concept, but, still, enjoyable as hell or not, this film was a turkey and then some.

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“I don’t like horror. I just don’t watch that stuff.”

I’ve been told that, or a slight variant of that, more than a few times over the years. Occasionally, they absolutely mean it. Interestingly, more often than not, they don’t realize that what they’re saying isn’t actually true. If you’re wondering how someone can be unaware they like or have been watching horror while saying they don’t like it, you might not realize the levels to which people can in general compartmentalize and separate some things in their own mind. Well, that and how much some people take the “reality” part of reality TV seriously.

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Well, here’s something I never thought I’d be doing. Today’s blogging and commentary duties included a last minute fill-in as a guest commentator on Peter David’s website for the weekly Freak Out Friday piece. For those unfamiliar with the regular commentary he started a while back, it’s basically a look at the week in Trump.