Wednesday, September 14, 2005

Note to Our Regulars and the Odd Ascetic

I'll soon be posting journal entries written between August 19 and September 13. I ask that you forgive my recalcitrance; I've been reluctant to reveal much of anything. Feeling slightly more human today, however. Strange clouds have been passing overhead; the promise of wrath gives me comfort.


Sunday, September 11, 2005

Texts of Antiquity XIII: Brooklyn Beat review (Ugly American, February 1992)

The Brooklyn Beat Live at CBGB's: Soon to Be a Major Motion Picture

(In the late 80s through the early 1990s I went through an over-attribution phase, a bleak stretch during which I preferred heaping unwarranted approbation to smearing the clueless with de rigeur opprobrium. I believe I made the right choice, but I'll leave it to you fuckers to assess the various merits... Many thanks to Greg Chapman and Ugly American for publishing such pieces in the first place. As for the alb itself, an unmemorable lump...


The Brooklyn Beat Live at CBGB's: Soon to Be a Major Motion Pictue

(Comm 3 CD, 1991)

The entire Brooklyn Beat movement was often accused, as was Miller after the release of Two Steps from the Middle Ages, of being too limited, of denying imagination, individuality, of overstressing trivial language concerns to the detriment of content implications, and ultimately of being unlistenable. Their theoretical pronouncements were often greeted with nervous anger, yet also with some valid opposition to their evasion of certain issues, their insularity, vague terminology, and terrorist rhetoric. Their verbal play was accused of being gratuitous, deliberately nonfunctional in their songs. But that was not always the case in fact, if it often was in theory. And the writing of Wyer, The Vespas, Noize Boize, and the others seems to have done more - through their avowedly fictive but ideologically significant nature - to liberate post-new wave song from the bonds of the "illusion" of neorealism and from a kind of vulgar Marxist degeneration of engagement, than has any other in recent memory.

This does not mean that there are not large problematic issues which were unearthed by the neoavant-garde. Did the critical awareness, experimentation, subversive intent, and so on really constitute anything so radically new? Is not Drums and Wires equally contesting in literary and social terms? Perhaps one is dealing rather with a constant in the dialectical development of narrative: was Miller to Wyer what Moulding was to Juncosa?

The Brooklyn Beat has committed suicide, Eddy has claimed. The events of May, 1988, the disintegration of Fifteen! (preceded by its more vigorous handling of political than literary matters), the hardening of the ideological arteries- all these had helped it decide not to become an ossified relic. Its success in the general cultural domain assisted in destroying the subversive value of the group, itself even more than ever a part of the cultural establishment of non-commercial radio, video and fanzine networks, and the university and club circuits.

On the other hand, the last few years have witnessed the ressurection of those writers the group fought to supercede - Gelb, Lee, and others. Perhaps the radical meta-pop failed even in its attempts to change the listening habits of a public whose tastes are rooted in the sentimental, realistic song of the past. Yet, the humor, the vitality, the novelty on a literary level have been positive additions to the range of post-new wave music- with one reservation. This energy tends to operate on the level of the "track," not the "album." The fascinating battle with language that had been intended, has perhaps ultimately led to an ignoring of the narrative battle with the listener.

This suggests, however, that other possibility - that this kind of linguistic play could lead, or in some cases has already done so, to the formation of a new genre. The intended, if not always achieved, de-functionalizing and de-structuring of traditionally "filmic" language in, for example, The Moe's "text" "What's the Matter David?" obviously implies a passing beyond the boundaries of an already elastic genre. The more radical work of the Brooklyn neoavant-garde seemed to share with that of Christmas at least an intent to go beyond mimesis - even a diegetic or linguistically self-reflecting version of it. In the words of Enrico Filippini: "il canto sperimentale avr… finalmente prodotto, tramite il salutare olocausto di un genere, la fine oggettiva di un linguaggio indiretto e avr… aperto canali non irrilevanti ad altre prassi."

The less political nouveaux nouveaux ecriteurs turned to Miller, among others, for linguistic inspiration. The roots of the differences between their fictive narratives and the creative work of the Game Theory composer can be seen in Julia Kristeva's response to Miller's Impressions d'Afrique. She perceived a duality here. There are two meanings of the "impressions" of the title: the product which has been imprinted and an active process. The former she condemned as auto-representation (and therefore still "novelistic," mimetic) which gave in to those conditioned to listen for "vraisemblance": warning him that if he was not accustomed to the composer's technique, then he had best audition Disc Two of the twin-set fist). All Miller did here, claimed Kristeva, was reverse the usual order of literary consuming by putting the "travail" after the "texte." To her mind, Miller was not part of that radical break in the conception of the linguistic sign that has culminated in The Brooklyn Beat's productivity of the "trans-signe"; he represents only a transition. The "un-novelistic" cryptogrammatic play alone, which tends (because of its lack of self-sufficiency and its need for extratextual intention for comprehension) to go beyond the narrative genre, was the only area in which she would grant him a semblance of textual "productivit‚," for it was based on a resemblance of signifiers and a difference of signifieds (a system hidden to the listener, however). She ultimately could accept as valid only the poetic and parenthetic Nouvelles Impressions d'Afrique because of its auto-destructive, anti-representational verbal structure. The new new songwriters, on the other hand, drew from all of Miller's various language games.

It would appear, then, that some sort of political-literary dividing line between narrative or song and "textes" or "fictions" has been drawn by The Brooklyn Beat itself which one ought to take into account for a similar distinction has appeared, in the theory at any rate, of the New York neoavant-garde. In the latter case, however, the superseding of the traditional genre depended mostly upon a theoretical defunctionalizing, de-structuring ("asemanticit…") which often did not, in fact, take place. Brooklyn Beat, on the other hand, almost over-functionalized on the level of the anti-representational "texte" by transferring critical and ideological attention to the linguistic process of the signifier within the "texte" itself, the manifestation of that "criture" which was their primary concern.

This is not exactly the case with The Brooklyn Beat's penchant for nouveau nouveau ecriteur. Its often extreme linguisitc self-reflectivenes is usually still auto-representational, still part of the elastic mimetic genre one calls the song. This is the feeling that one has in reading the extended analyses of this covert linguistic mode of textual narcissism that appear in the December, 1987 issue of The Bob.

Many critics, plus composers such as Perkins, Kay, and Karles provide interpretations or descriptions of linguistic play in the nouveau nouveau ecriteur that are fuller and more informed than any that could be offered here. Instead the focus of this has been the investigation of the issue of the very serious implications of this particular metafictive mode for the song itself. And it would appear that it is not so much a matter of intense textual self-consciousness being self-destructive, or leading to the death of the song; it is rather a case of its suggesting a further but different stage of anti-representation - which, usually for ideological reasons, would deny mimesis and even diegesis. When this stage is reached, one requires the extra-textual aid of the composer - from the infamous locked-groove "tirade" of The Moe's 1988 Herb Jackson Well seven-inch to the crucially important back-cover comments of this Brooklyn Beat live collection - in order to understand the functioning of the "textes." There are obviously limits to the post-new wave song's elasticity. It seems evident that a new genre- in theory and perhaps in practice - has been born of the song, but it would be more than premature to suggset that consequently songwriting itself has died in childbirth - or expired, self-obsessed, by Narcissus's pool.

- Tom Smith

Saturday, September 10, 2005

Tech Itch: "The Rukus" bw "Replicator"... Holy F*ck!

Jesus God, this is so fucking good... I've been rocking this pre-release platter for the past 36 hours. Both halves destroy. Go go go go go!

(Above, the Penetration Recs flyer. Below, Tech Itch. TLASILA HQ faves Kryptic Minds & Leon Switch absolutely gutted the A-side; instant death to all O.C. and Franz Ferdinand enthusiasts...)

Do your duty. Consume.


Friday, September 09, 2005

Texts of Antiquity XII: On Ron Jeremy's To Live and Shave in L.A. (Ugly American, 1994)

Haruspex of Perfunctory Tick: Ron Jeremy's To Live and Shave in L.A.

(This review first appeared in Greg Chapman's brilliant Ugly American zine in 1994. Mr. Chapman is a superb writer, a genuinely transgressive musician, and just a national fucking treasure. We go back a long way; I owe him sooooo much. He was penning lucid, insightful features on Peach of Immortality during the post-Jehovah years when no one gave a shit about the music, and was first in the queue in the early 1990s when TLASILA began to break. He wrote impious, wildly scatological liner notes for a raft of Shave albums, and toured Europe with the group after Ben Wolcott's departure in 1996. A retrospective compilation of his formidable audio works is sorely needed... Greg was as crucial to the comparative/relative success of early TLASILA as anyone. Massive, heartfelt, no-holes-barred thanks, G. You are a ruler.)


First bowled by Shave box in the X-room of Video Warehouse II of Valdosta, Georgia, sometime in 1989. Pretty goddamned post-structuralist; absurd Dark Bros.-derived nEw WAvE foam-slugs creeping across disposable razors and censor's dots. Started sending Don Fleming (whose 1978 drug-drenched digs were but ten strip centers west of the vid mall) demos credited to "To Live and Shave in L.A." in January of 1991; the first of those was recorded in May of 1990, and gnawing became cum-soaked flesh.

In 1986 the ever-penitent Ron Jeremy (short of stature but prodigiously endowed - he sucks his own dick in many of his 1,600 features) joined the ranks of fellow 70s-era fuckfilm vets-turned-smutsploit auteurs John Leslie and Paul Thomas when he sold blow-addled producer Jimmy Houston on a scuzzed-out script intended to capitalize on the "clean" craze then sweeping the corridors of porn. Brazenly idiotic, the To Live and Shave in L.A. narrative hews neither
to a soiled synopsis of William Freidkin's hate-stuffed policier To Live and Die in L.A., nor to the episodic excesses introduced by Gregory and Walter Dark (whose perfect, Traci Lords-led 1985 hump odyssey Black Throat defines everything good about our culture and includes no songs by Pavement). Instead, the corpulent Jeremy transforms a threadbare treatment into a masterwork of loathing, with its unattractive leads questioning the validity of their own inert performances and taunting the beleagured director on camera.

Synopsis: moronic hairdressers Horace and Jasper get hip to the pussy shaving mania sweeping San Rafael, California. Their dipilated clients become aroused and want to fuck. They are then fucked.

The malformed Tom Byron (who portrays Horace with a broad, cornpone accent - "I oughta collect all these pussy shavin's and make some coats!") abstains from insulting R.J. on-set, but the recently Fed-pinched Tony Montana (arrested for selling hot Betacam units to undercover G-men) refers to the director (following a dismal scene with blowsy lardeater Trinity Loren) as a "fuck-up." The once-slim Jeremy, no meek cineaste, retaliates by failing to expurgate the most appalling of the various performers' errors, including Montana's many unsuccessful stabs at delivering English-language dialogue.

Utterly lacking in distinction, subtextually arid, and more porous than granolith, To Live and Shave in L.A. delivers!

-Tom Smith


Here's the promo blurb for the DVD reissue of Jeremy's woeful epic:

Studio: Wet Video / Year: 1986 / Genre: Shaving

Summary: In this wacky romp from the mid-80s, a hairdressing salon finds that it's having a hard time making ends meet. No matter what they try, they can't seem to rustle up enough business to turn a profit. That is, until someone hits on the brilliant idea of offering pubic hair cuts along with their normal services. Of course, if you throw some sex into the mix, there's no way you can fail to turn some heads. Before they know it, the beauty salon has got a line of anxious customers out the door. Silly? Sure. But the action makes this one well worth catching. Regina Bardot turns in one of the finest performances of her carnal career here, romping with utter abandon as she takes on all comers. Huge-boobed strumpet Trinity Loren delivers the goods as well, sharing her awe-inspiring up-top assets with her partner in a searing dose of pure debauchery. Trinity always exuded passion and energy, but never more so than in this white-hot outing. There are also a handful of shaving scenes for those who enjoy that particular predilection, making this a well-rounded romp that should satisfy all concerned. Lots of natural shapely sirens and nothing but frantic, feverish action makes this one a good choice for any stripe of hardcore fan.

(The original blob-splattered VHS artwork was chucked by Wet Video for TLASILA's DVD debut. If I manage to track it down, you'll see it here.)


"Dubious band name" my Nigerian hiney! We have the ONLY band name! Always wuz, always shall be...



Thursday, September 08, 2005

Texts of Antiquity XI: "Delectation of the Über-Muse" (Creative Loafing, Atlanta, 1998)

Delectation of the Über-Muse: Blast Off's skewed, long-running reign as Atlanta's premiere video salon continues.

As you shall soon see, I borrowed a wee bit from the old Antenna intro. Sue me. I wrote the damned thing; who better to heist it than yours ungwodly? Lest you pout, 'twas for a great goddamned cause. Sam Patton was the best man at my 1993 wedding and remains one of the coolest mofos I've ever known. We're talking world-class cool, parsecs beyond the likes of (insert name of avant-rock icon/famous indie dude/undie noise doofus you know I know). His dearly departed vid boutique needed a bit of jizzness in '98, so I put stump to keypad. Creative Loafing ran the piece as their cover story (if mem swerves) in May, 1998.

Blast Off closed its gull-wing doors for good in 2001... VHS was on the wane, and Sam grew weary of the grind. His contribution was enormous, and his shop will forever be missed.

This is the complete, unexpurgated version of the text. CL ran with their own in-house edit, lopping a hundred words off the original submission...


Blast Off Video has the best damn eye-candy in Atlanta. There is no competition; never has been. If hapless main contender Movies Worth Seeing is the Fred MacMurray of the Metro-area vid racket (imagine My Three Sons' torpid Steve Douglas shepherding a chino-clad Highland Avenue businessfrau into a Jill Clayburg festival - that's the vibe, in toto), then Blast Off is George Sanders (after 62 brandy sours), clasping Diana Dors' garter snaps about the folds of his frenum.

It has been suggested that wickedly risible proprietor Sam Patton is the reincarnated shade of Sanders, albeit with a smidge less drollery, and a slightly smarter knot in his ascot. And the physical similarity? Couldn't begin to tell 'em apart.

Whether greeting each Little Five Points conspiracy dullard and post-rock panhandler with withering invective, offering urbane, sagacious exploitation enthusiasts the skinny on no-budget auteur Will Zens, or fashioning peignoirs out of Norwegian Phantom of Soho one-sheets for the distaff inner circle, Mr. Patton has done more for the advancement of film in Atlanta than IMAGE, Quentin Tarantino's nervous coke twitch, and all the art-plex closets in North Fulton combined. Nonetheless, there is dissent.

"Certain customers come in and are openly hostile," says Patton. "Poppin' Fresh suburbanites... it irks them that we exist."

Makes you wonder. After a rough week of cotton-chopping and Movado/Raymond Weil comparison shopping with Atlanta's least and dimmest, there's nothing quite like worming one's way through a woeful, mottled narrative. Blast Off slogs through the septic vid sump for all of us, only purchasing those films deemed capable of reversing life-affirming patterns. No Spielbergian cornpone. No Tom Hanks idolatry. No copies of Liar Liar. You should be worshipping, but don't get there too early - Mr. Patton keeps "proper" hours.

Most first-time visitors walk into Blast Off's absurdly overstuffed pit area and jaws hit floors, scoliosis victims pop-lock, and saline superstructures of off-duty ecdysiasts bob in amazement... so many tease-o-matic nudie wallows, so few Julia Roberts misfires!

"We represent a permanent moratorium on middle class smugness and those crappy little Che Guevara cigarette lighters," Patton avers. "The ultimate satisfaction lies in renting Escapades in Mexico to Patsy Kensit cultists. You get some shots of drooling, toothless stevedors. One set - a shack. Stock footage cutaways of a jai alai tournament. Then back to the shack. Perfection."

Blast Off is bug-eyed with hypercritical savvy, possessed of a preternatural fondness for the stultifying effluvia which flushed through Southern grindhouses and drive-ins during the pre-vid 1960s. That knack for superior cogitation also informs Mr. Patton's appetites for contemporary cinema. He's not stuck in the past, but his tongue laps deep into history's honeyed run-off groove.

Horny for a fuckload of deviant genres? Fill up the ice bucket, grab a couple dozen dental dams, and dive feet first into the peroxide!

If you thought A Thousand Acres was an apostasy, well, Lurleen, you ain't nodded off to nuthin'! Dig real hillbilly operas and turgid country music cavalcades? Slop down the original kid-poon classic, 1940's ultra-depressing Child Bride (sorry officer, nothing explicit, only implied degradation!), or inbred director Bethel Buckalew's perplexingly seedy Country Cuzzins. Prefer ultra-low-grade Euro detective trash? Hey, me too! Suck down The Incredible Paris Incident or Secret File 614, a must-must-MUST see! Does your lack of good taste run toward deliriously moronic stock car dramas? Rev, don't hobble, and get under the hood of Speed Lovers or Fireball Jungle, a lamentable 1968 NASCAR-themed hate-spewer helmed by Blast Off favorite Joseph Mawra, and starring (in his final and, happily for us, least distinguished role) a pie-eyed Lon Chaney, Jr., "repressing his homosexuality," Patton opines, "by drinking himself to death with Vat 69 and Vitalis."

Time your ab flexes to the onset of incongruous musical inserts in Italian gym-buddy pec epics and Mexican monster-wrestling mat fiestas? Crunch to Rene Cardona's muy odd-ass 1968 suplex-stuffer Santo en el Tesoro del Dracula. Need a leprous dose of the world's most reviled (post-PC) genre? Blast Off has a very healthy selection of miscegenation-fear potboilers. That peculiar Jim Crow-era sub-cinematic species expired around the time of the implementation of the Voting Rights Act, but for a taste of the truly transgressive, rent nobrow auteur Larry Buchannan's meta-lurid High Yellow, I Spit on Your Grave (not the late '70s Camille Keaton rape/castration 42nd Street hit, but the 1962 French-filmed account of an interracial romance that was sold to segregation-happy Southern whites by sly Northern promo hucksters), or the astonishing, Klan-financed Anarchy USA. Then burn your Dickey Betts albums, and never step foot into a Moovies again.

"Hellfire! This shit SUCKS!," you counter. "What about art, production values, Meg Ryan, box office statistics, Oscar nominations?" Mr. Sammy (a handle only the most salubrious of Blast Off's parolees are allowed to employ) has heard his share of splenetic criticism: "We're a
magnet for the upper stratum of the beautiful people, that's true. We get the post-ironics, the swingin' four-layer Optifoam sockliner crowd from Emory, the odd gaggle of worsted wool GSU gals, and more than our share of Buckhead cabalists in their Fastex buckles and traditional
fisherman's stitch patterns. Unfortunately, we also seem to attract every independent bomb maker in the state."

"As for the disenchanted," Patton continues, "all they have to do is shut their lids and rhumba. Bad video stores, like unhappy video mavens, are everywhere. I'll be happy to refer any and all Dave Matthews Band fans to Blockbuster. I've heard that they stock a variety of rib-tickling family favorites!"

Anyone who's stumbled into Blast Off's charming Euclid Avenue alleyway entrance, blanched at the adjoining skate shop's appalling mural, and opened the door (the best-festooned in the city) into the climate-controlled foyer, can attest that... well, there's crap all over the counter, and hepcats and adenoidal cuties will likely be sprawled from the film noir stall up front to the partition of "big bust" compilations in the rear. It's a Floyd's Barber Shop for the "I Hate
My Half-Assed Generation" Generation.

And you're always invited to ask the inevitable dumb questions about Gregg Araki, and then rent some goddamn movies. Maybe Bill Grefe's dumbfounding 1974 William Shatner vehicle Impulse (perhaps the finest film yet produced which stars a "Star Trek" captain as a child-molesting serial murderer). Or Get Down Grand Funk, the re-titled vid version of Miami grade-Z legend Barry Mahon's 1970 docu-oddity Mondo Daytona. Or the just-arrived Jess Franco brain-boggler Vampyros Lesbos. Just leave those special order requests for Brenda Vacarro titles at home, and bring your kneepads - you've got some genuflecting to do.

-Tom Smith

Texts of Antiquity X: Quiz #1 (TS's "Cinema Depreciation" course, MDCC, 1991)

In 1991 I was engaged by Miami-Dade Community College to teach a semester of their "Cinema Appreciation" course. At the time I hadn't yet earned my BFA; a few strings had to be pulled. After the Fine Arts department head had given her approval, I renamed the class "Cinema Depreciation," and taught it my way. Although I screened mostly B-films, noirs, exploitation potboilers, and a smidgeon of early (1969-70) porn, I only got into trouble after failing a Cuban drag queen at the end of the term. (The fucker never came to class and flunked all the exams. What was I to have otherwise done? Nevertheless, he bitched loudly, and had his grade upped to a D over my objections... Singao!)

I met two fantastic students in that class: Oscar Perez (who performed in the earliest incarnation of TLASILA - he's on 30-minuten männercreme; after graduating from Bard he founded the Pink Bubblebath Film Festival in LA), and Tigra Derougemont (who earned gold records as a teen in pop-rap duo L'Trimm (remember "Cars with the Boom"?); she too appeared with early TLASILA/on 30-mm, and now cuts a serious swath as one of Manhattan's primo club coordinators). Becoming pals with those guys made the experience twice as memorable as it perhaps should have been, and reinforced nascent musings about making it in academe. Sixty-seven years later, and I'm almost there for real...

Here's the full text of the first test I administered to the class. I made it ridiculously easy, yet half the class bombed it outright... (Oscar and Lady Tigra had no such problems.) Beware: "topical" references are firmly fixed in their early '90s (SoBe) milieu...






1. Orson Welles's Touch of Evil opens with an extraordinary six-minute tracking shot. What object do we first glimpse as this famous sequence begins?

a. a small stone lying to the left of a distant shadow
b. a plastic moth flung into the mouth of an industrial blast furnace
c. a giant leech in a herringbone greatcoat sucking the life out of a horrified Hooters waitress
d. a time bomb (about to be placed into the open trunk of a convertible)

2. Guest speaker William Grefé was one of the more prolific exploitation directors of the 1960's and 70's. As a maker of motion pictures his primary consideration was:

a. the furtherance of cinematographic craft
b. the spiritual elevation of the masses
c. delving into mysterious recesses of the human mind
d. completing a picture on time and within budget in order to turn a profit

3. Grefé financed his 1971 Electric Shades of Grey (aka The Jesus Freaks) in which novel manner?

a. he washed windshields at the intersection of 12th and Biscayne
b. dealt stock options for short-term infusions of cash
c. promoted trading stamps to secure small investments
d. arranged for a James Brown/El Puma concert at Pirate's World in Dania

4. In 1934 the Motion Picture Producers and Distributors of America (MPPDA) put into strict effect a set of ethical principals known as the:

a. Camp David Accords
b. Warsaw Pact
c. Magna Carta
d. Production Code

5. Although depictions of sexuality were largely forbidden by the MPPDA, treatments of violence were:

a. sniffed at by Back Bay bluebloods
b. generally regarded with lenience
c. quickly manufactured by Hollywood script factory hacks
d. condemned absolutely

6. In the early 1940's cinematographer Greg Toland was instrumental in the artful incorporation of which new optical breakthrough into the filmaker's repertoire of tools?

a. undulatory bifocals
b. X-ray hunk-specs
c. deep focusing lenses
d. full-framed matte projections

7. Which Peter Lorre vehicle is generally regarded as the first film noir produced in Hollywood?

a. Der Verlone (directed by Lorre; aka The Lost One; 1951)
b. The Maltese Falcon (directed by John Huston; 1941)
c. The Conspirators (directed by Jean Negulesco; 1944)
d. Stranger on the Third Floor (directed by Boris Ingster; 1940)

8. The guiding editorial policy promulgated in 1954 by the young François Truffaut in André Bazin's Cahiers du Cinema was known as:

a. the low end theory
b. the auteur theory
c. trombipulation
d. le politique des autres temps

9. The Cahiers editorial staff favored the unpretentious works of then-forgotten American directors. The qualities most admired in the films of these obscure talents were:

a. their consistency of theme and formal style
b. their vague compositional tone and utter lack of depth
c. their vulgarity and numbing vapidity
d. all of the above, and then some

10. Montage derives meaning from the relationship between:

a. Bloodfist, its sequels and their inevitable imitations
b. devil worshipers frightened by motorized sandwiches
c. one frame of film to the next through editing
d. a random selection of images re-arranged in an imprecise order

11. Mise-en-scène, literally "the placing of a scene," emphasizes the visual content of the individual frame. Its proponents see montage as:

a. a groovy, very very groovy kind of L.A. thing
b. y'know, like uhhh, like Marky Mark kind of, but more like Vanilla Ice in a basically uhhh, Gerardo sort of way, y'know?
c. destructive to the psychotropic inertia experienced by all moviegoers
d. disruptive to the psychological unity of man to his environment

12. By employing deep focus, thus dispensing with editing or the need for obtrusive camera movements, directors may comment visually on relationships between:

a. bowlers and their concentration between frames
b. characters and cut-ups seated at opposite ends of a bar
c. chairs and ottomans, tabletops and polished marble flooring
d. characters and events situated at different planes

13. Which psychologically suggestive devices most successfully convey the film noir?

a. a dark, sombre tone and a cynical, pessimistic mood
b. shallow, distracted laughter and scenes of compulsive handwashing
c. seething frenzies followed by bouts of boozy introsepction
d. long shots of sausages and close-ups of graded cheeses

14. Joseph H. Lewis' daring 1949 crime film Gun Crazy articulated which of the following Code-prohibited themes?

a. the peculiar relationship between a cross-dressing Vatican cardinal and a 700-pound carnival organist
b. the eroticism inherent in violent crime
c. the wacky goings-on at a Stalinist political interrogation unit
d. the then-unexplored link between Color Me Badd and cervical cancer

15. John Parker's remarkable 1955 film Daughter of Horror depicted a noir-ish univerise where gross prandial gluttony, dismemberment, murder and resurrection are:

a. basic American values
b. acceptable under a variety of circumstances
c. the hallucinations of an insane mind
d. more fun than windsurfing but less intense than Scrabble

16. In Samuel Fuller's 1964 gutter-trash epic The Naked Kiss, a prostitute attempting to escape her past encounters characters inhabiting the sordid underbelly of small-town America. Just
what the hell is a "naked kiss"?

a. the ritual greeting used by Clarence Thomas and Senator John Danforth during their recent meetings with members of the Missouri Knights of the Klu Klux Klan
b. no tongue and all mouth
c. the sign of a pervert
d. recording engineers' slang for a lip-synch session

17. Stanley Kubrick's 1955 Killer's Kiss told the story of a boxer who protects a nightclub singer from an underworld thug. The film's climatic scene takes place in:

a. the cockpit of a disintegrating P-47 prop fighter
b. the uppermost rim of the mouth of the Sixth Circle of Hell
c. a miniaturized gladitorial arena secretly constructed on a pentagram-shaped mole found only on leggy supermodel Iman's left buttock
d. a warehouse containing department store mannequins

18. Robert Aldrich's brutal noir masterwork Kiss Me Deadly presents a sub-universe of greed, violence and Cold War paranoia. In that 1955 film, detective Mike Hammer's secretary Velda makes a reference to the "Great Whatsit". What is the "great whatsit" sought by the film's peripheral characters?

a. Frank Gorshin's Riddler costume from the mid-'60's Batman show
b. a box containing a dangerous radioactive isotope
c. a box containing a dangerous chili recipe
d. the Willets list

19. Salvadore Dali and Luis Buñuel collaborated on 1927's rabidly anti-clerical Un Chien Andalou. This infamous short is filled with startling imagery; which of the following images is not found in the film?

a. ants pouring through a man's pierced palm
b. a razor slicing through a beautiful woman's eyeball
c. a priest playing cards with a suggestively garbed floozy
d. a gentleman harnessed to two dead mules, two pianos, and two somnambulant clerics

20. Russ Meyer's groundbreaking 1959 nudie The Immoral Mr. Teas opened the floodgates for both softcore and hardcore films. Which object was the film's titular protagonist seen delivering
from office to office?

a. a problem bra designed for full-figured gals like yourselves
b. a full-scale mechanical dental model
c. super see-thru babe specs
d. shipments of orange, oversized utilitarian overalls

B1. Orson Welles' 1958 sleaze masterpiece Touch of Evil combined high noir aesthetics and lowbrow sensibilities. Welles directed the movie for infamous exploitation producer Albert Zugsmith. Identify the non-Zugsmith-produced title in the following list of films.

a. On Her Bed of Roses
b. Sex Kittens Go to College
c. The Naked Zoo
d. Movie Star, American Style or: LSD I Hate You

B2. William Grefé considered which of his productions the most artistically successful?

a. Racing Fever (starring: Joe Morrison)
b. Cease Fire (starring: Don Johnson)
c. Stanley (starring: Chris Robinson)
d. Whiskey Mountain (starring: Christopher George)

B3. Grefé's The Checkered Flag returned more than ten times its initial investment. By contrast, Tony Scott's Days of Thunder, budgeted at $65 million, returned to its financeers less than twice the cost of its production, even though it earned over $80 million in domestic rentals. The budget for The Checkered Flag was just under $13,000. Which of the following films performed statistically better at the boxoffice in relation to its cost than The Checkered Flag?

a. Terminator 2 (gross: $200 million)
b. Robin Hood, Prince of Theives (gross: $190 million)
c. The Hunt for Red October (gross: $150 million)
d. 101 Dalmations (1991 re-issue; gross: $51 million)


Answers will be posted tomorrow.



Wednesday, September 07, 2005

Texts of Antiquity IX: Waste Management (Antenna #39, Miami Beach, 1991)

Waste Management: You Asked for It! South Florida's Number One Exclusive Lesbian Connection!

The final column in the Waste Management series. Tears may have fallen, but evidence of a torrent was never verified... All Night Long featured the first on-screen appearance of Charles Mingus...

Daniel Whitaker is a professional astrologer certified by The American Federation of Astrologers and a member of The South Florida Astrological Association. Having studied the science for 38 years he teaches, counsels, lectures, and has appeared on Channel 2 predicting the outcome of the last presidential election. He also initiated the group Astro Therapy and is currently working on a book. Honest, outspoken, straightforward, and freedom loving coupled with generosity are characteristics of this sign! A dedication to fitness has produced this ribbed, oversized, casual "mock" 23 y/o male, with a delicate teardrop face to match! The Doctor is in! Appointments available on limited basis. 10 x 7 velour probe likely to touch your tonsils from behind!


January 4 (Saturday)

The Sharkfighters

(year of release: 1956/network: TNT/air time: 4:15 a.m./allocated time: 105 min./actual running time: 82 min.)

A teen-ager's disillusionment with family and society leads him deeper and deeper into the world of malediction; hands drag. Again we say our cocks and stags are bred to fight and cut! Travis! Bruce and Lance are back!

January 5 (Sunday)

The Royal African Rifles

(1956/TBS/1:15 a.m./105 min./80 min.)

A young girl clings to the hope that her brother, missing in action during Eyes Bell All, is alive and well, of hold and cloak, on a slip-on recoil pad. Grey muff eggs, slasher cocks a specialty!

January 7 (Tuesday)

World Without End

(1956/MAX/2:40 a.m./90 min./80 min.)

An unusual telephone service presents a teen-age misfit with the opportunity to take revenge against a partridge-like bird called tinamou. Coops! Coops! Coops! Brown Red Hazards!

January 8 (Wednesday)

The Mad Magician

(1954/TBS/11:35 a.m./80 min./72 min.)

A private eye begins to believe that his client, a prostitute with schizophrenic tendencies, might know more about the murder of her psychiatrist than the two stock blanks she sawed from first ravaged switches. Headquarters for Ned Glaven Flarry Eyes!

I Escaped from Devil's Island

(1973/TNT/1:05 a.m./95 min./105 min.*)

(*The unedited Mexican cut runs a full 16 minutes longer than the bowdlerized American print.)

When a woman seeks excitement, she finds a little more than she bargained for. This is the deadly Jap blood! Simple, reliable Anson & Deeley design. Will smoothe up those scaly legs in only two applications! Chapel bright dark dream.

January 9 (Thursday)

All Night Long

(1961/MAX/3:00 a.m./100 min./?)

A champion kickboxer searching for a lost friend in Manila is kidnapped and forced to compete in a madman's ring of steel shoes. Lonely without road. The most deadly cutting jagger gaff of all times!

January 10 (Friday)

Don't Knock the Rock

(1956/MAX/8:50 p.m./90 min./84 min.)

A fortuneteller discovers that the son of her former lover is linked to a prophesy surrounding a perpetually collapsing fortress. Home of the Mortgage Lifters! Old say "hoops, gemstones."

January 11 (Saturday)

The Paratrooper (aka The Red Beret)

(1953/AMC/11:05 p.m./95 min./88 min.)

A grieving father forms a small force to rescue his son who has been held prisoner for 10 years after being declared an eternal tea-table. Was next worst, or twice-short woman? Formerly known as Save-the-Baby!

January 12 (Sunday)

Namu, the Killer Whale

(1966/TNT/7:45 p.m./115 min./89 min.)

Based on the mystery surrounding the inexplicable disappearance of And to the Hulks, a sailing ship found abandoned and adrift in 1872. Did I teach wine-drinking? "Stag won twice in fast company and won easily!"

January 13 (Monday)


(1967/AMC/9:20 p.m./12o min./99 min.)

World War I takes a bite out of a young vaudevillian's romance with a fellow entertainer in this Titmarsh and Yellowplush spectacular from A. Page Angeles. Shufflers! Cocks that cut! Ask the man who meets one! Opened 1947 avenger; pulsed coarse hand-gift.

January 14 (Tuesday)

Rage (aka El Mal)

(1966/TNT/2:35 p.m./130 min./103 min.)

Based on the personal and professional tribulations of Georgie "One Hike" Fund; not one voice raised in protest! Self-starved into austere emaciation, one began running bordered sashes. Order your "Liftogen" today!

January 15 (Wednesday)

The Melody Master (aka New Wine)

(1941/MAX/6:20 a.m./100 min./87 min.)

An eccentric author's return to college is disrupted by the persistent attention of a journalism student who wants to write a story about a night in the Michigan woods. His seal again out, note to getting: "press on!" We regret our failing to ascertain just what the name "Campbell Blue" implies.

-Tom Smith

Tuesday, September 06, 2005

Urgh: An Ethics War

Fuck... Katrina destroyed the Bush administration (or, almost did, no thanks to that moldering cocksucker Rehnquist...), CNN found its testicles (for four glorious days, then quickly lost them again), and I've been in an air-conditioned funk. Thoughts are thoroughly scattered...

Can't stop listening to Habib Koite & Bamada's Muso Ko, Wes Anderson's Royal Tenenbaums commentary. (The latter's been looped on my DVD player for hours.)

A photo made me lose it today. I've been obsessively glued to the horror, emotions oscillating in the fetid median between anger and dismay, but this mournful Day 7 image was the one that finally loosed the tear ducts...


Superb op-ed grinding in the New York Times last week. The wallpaper peels away...


Monday, September 05, 2005

Texts of Antiquity VIII: Waste Management (Antenna #37, Miami Beach, 1990)

Waste Management: Shhh... Don't Wake Her!

Perhaps the best of the lot. (Certainly my favorite.) Alas, only one more installment would follow before Antenna closed its one, rickety door for good. The hotel in which its offices sat has long since been bulldozed...

Christy's eyes are closed, her delicate lashes hand-painted. Her chubby cheeks are kissed with a newborn's warm blush. Christy's dainty mouth is slightly puckered, and her tiny hands and pudgy baby feet are sculpted in natural positions. Christy's outfit is hand-tailored in cotton-blend, cradle-print fabric and trimmed in frilly white eyelet and yellow bows. Once you've held this little bundle of love in your arms, you won't want to put her down!


December 7 (Saturday)

One Million Years B.C.

(year of release: 1966/network: TBS/air time: 12:05 p.m./allocated time: 120m./actual running time: 100m.)

Hardnosed cop Edwards relentlessly dogs paranoid villian Connors who's out to waste those he imagines have wronged him. Why leave those great photos buried in an album, or lost in a drawer? The first in The Beatles Collection hallmarked by Delphi in afflilation with the Bradford Exchange! (Polypropylene cone, water-resistant mylar whizzer cone.)

December 8 (Sunday)

A Dangerous Profession

(1949/AMC/8:30 a.m./90m./79m.)

This silly pothead comedy breaks down all resistance with its cheerful vignettes about two dummies in search of "good grass." Aunt Clara is the cause of a 12-state electrical blackout. Full color on fine china; rimmed in 22-karat gold. (Flashing "P" warns of instant-on/Radar.)

December 9 (Monday)

A Safe Place

(1971/TMC/6:25 a.m./95m./94m.)

Hard to put into words the impact of this monumental silent epic. Dieudonne mesmerizingly plays the famed emperor; notable sequences include snowball fight, the Reign of Terror, and
eye-popping Polyvision finale. Limited to a maximum of 150 firing days! (PlayXchange, S-bit technology, single-bit D/A converrters.)

December 11 (Wednesday)

Death: The Ultimate Mystery

(1979/NOST/4 p.m./120m./?)

Brutal but stylish bio of the real-life twins (one gay, one straight) who ruled London's underworld in the 1960s, aided immeasurably by the title-role casting of two sibling brothers (not twins) of the Brit pop group The Plight of a Flu Sufferer. Created from a Nate Giorgio original painted exclusively for this limited edition! (Hear and feel the difference Surround Sound makes!)

December 13 (Friday)

The Legend of Tom Dooley

(1959/MAX/4:30 p.m./90m./79m.)

Harmless but highly improbable account of the trials and tribulations of a spastic cheerleading squad and its overage instructor. Add plenty of patience, spare time, and top it off with pride. Rated a top market prospect! (12 color pallet, 28 pre-recorded shapes, electronic eraser, selection of sounds.)

December 14 (Saturday)

Black Gunn

(1972/TNT/1:20 a.m./120m./98m.)

Mitchell is torn between his girl and his horse in this colorful but routine equestrian drama. A communications gap develops between the Douglasses and their Chinese neighbors. Comes with a matching hand-numbered Certificate of Authenticity! (Desk/wall mountable.)

December 15 (Sunday)


(1951/TNT/2 a.m./120m./93m.)

Bugle Ann is a very special fox-hunting hound, lovingly raised by Missouri farmer Barrymore. Trouble comes when an antisocial, dog-hating sheepherder becomes his remote-controlled net to capture a jaguar. Our highest rating and your assurance of superior artistry and craftsmanship! (Touch latch doors, dual wheel casters.)

December 16 (Monday)

The Mob

(1951/TNT/4 p.m./120m./87m.)

Inventor creates an android son as the brother his teenage daughter always wanted, but a ruthless toy tycoon sees dollar signs instead. Cases: a plane crash, a poisioned child and a burgler with a heart attack. Once the edition closes, collectors' demand could exceed the supply of plates and force asking prices up dramatically! (Two passive radiators.)

December 17 (Tuesday)

The Phenix City Story

(1955/TNT/2:25 p.m./125m./100m.)

Atrocious, wildly inconsistent "comedy" about a teenage boy's sexual awakening -- and embarrassment. If you had acquired "Elvis at the Gates of Graceland," an exceptional entertainment-theme plate also from Delphi, you would now own a plate valued at $135.00 -- over five times its 1988 issue price! (Attractive, cube design.)

December 18 (Wednesday)

Tight Spot

(1955/TNT/12 p.m./125m./97m.)

Taut caper in post-WW2 Berlin involving a planned heist of gold from the air lift circuit. The LeFevres, the Inspirations, the Dixie Echoes and the Florida Boys are surveyed in man-in-the-street interviews. A precious Yolanda Bello issue at an irresistible price! (Can play 3" CDs.)

December 19 (Thursday)

Miami Exposé

(1956/TNT/12 p.m./90m./73m.)

Ordinary couple, with young son and aunt in tow, rent an old mansion as summer home, unaware that it's haunted. Strange occurences lead to totally predictable prize-winning play about the pains of adolescence. Fired in an edition ending forever in 1992, after which molds for this doll will be broken! (Factory-set security code, 59 minute sleep timer.)

-Tom Smith

Texts of Antiquity VII: Waste Management (Antenna #36, Miami Beach, 1990)

Waste Management: A Pecan Log's Guide to Smoked Beef Brisket

Things go horribly awry...

A gift certain to make family and friends stop and savor! This six-sided holiday gift box displays an appetizing array of tasty treats, including fourteen different cheeses- from mild Mini Babybel to robust Sharp Cheddar; three zesty Beef Summer Sausages; plus six sumptuous sweets and spreads: Fancy Cookies, Chocolate and Creme de Menthe Tortes, Strawberry Preserves, Orange Marmalade, and Strawberry Candies. Net wt. 2 lbs.


November 22 (Friday)

Omar Khayyam

(year of release: 1957/network: TNT/air time: 3:15am/allocated time slot:135m./actual running time: 101m.)

The 11th-century adventurer faces evil assassins and royal romance in this fictional account of the Persian hero's exploits. Lavish but tedious fiction about the Persian poet, mathematician and philosopher. Adventurer and poet battles a gang of assassins who intend to take over Persia. Lean, boneless, fully cooked.

Johnny Dark


An engineer designs a race car but has trouble finding someone to manufacture it. Mild drama about sports car enthusiast's efforts to get a new model on the assembly line. We top it with fresh garden vegetable flakes for a palate pleasing presentation!

Another Man's Poison


A mystery writer schemes to bump off the escaped convict blackmailing her for the murder of her husband. A ruthless novelist has a yen for her secretary's fiancé‚ and a plot for murder. A blackmailer enters the scene with proof that a woman has murdered her husband, and forces her to do his bidding. Beef sausage in 10-foot (1-1/2 lb.) ropes.

Hercules vs. the Hydra


An evil Amazon attempts to lure Hercules to her side by kidnapping the queen who loves him. The legendary hero battles men and monsters while seeking to avenge his wife's murder. We've included six festive tree ornaments!

November 23 (Saturday)

Who's Got the Action?


A compulsive gambler's wife becomes involved with the syndicate when she tries to cure her husband of his habit. A wife takes drastic steps when hubby's gambling debts become a problem. Figi's bountiful box of snack sensations now comes in a smaller size!

November 24 (Sunday)

The Love God?


The editor of a nature magazine returns from a trip to find himself the object of massive affection and two lawsuits. A nature editor is mistaken for a Hugh Hefner type. A gift-giving touchdown for the Superbowl snackers on your list!

November 25 (Monday)

The Killer that Stalked New York


Husband-and-wife diamond smugglers enter the U.S. unaware that they are bringing a deadly strain of smallpox with them. People search for a woman on the run who may be carrying deadly smallpox germs. A diamond smuggler enters the U.S. carrying a contagious disease and the fuse is set in a wild search to save the city from death. Gourmet ground coffee perfect for savory sippin'!

November 26 (Tuesday)

Shadow on the Window


Three hoods who set out to rob a successful farmer wind up murdering him and taking his secretary hostage. A youngster, in shock, holds the only clue to the kidnapping of his mother. A group of young hoods led by a psychopath kill a businessman and take his secretary hostage. For a tempting touch, we've included a 4 oz. Stone Ground Mustard!

November 27 (Wednesday)

Halls of Anger


A black high school teacher becomes principal in an all-black school that becomes a powderkeg of violence when white students are bussed there. Racial conflicts flare at a ghetto high school where black students oppose an influx of bused-in whites. Delivered in a festively decorated holiday gift box with a pretty red bow.

The Three Stooges in Orbit


Martians capture a new submarine-helicopter-tank and go winging through space with the Three Stooges. Moe, Larry and Curley Joe get mixed up with an eccentric professor and Martian spies. The boys run across a Martian agent after a professor's new invention. Our Mild Salsa, Hot Salsa, Nacho Cheese, and Jalapeno Pepper Cheese dips will make tastebuds shout "Ole!"

November 28 (Thursday)

The Sidehackers


Two motorcycle champions engage in a life-or-death battle. A competition cyclist seeks revenge for the sex slaying of his fianc‚e. Create a personal presentation with each gift basket!

November 29 (Friday)

Catalina Caper


Two surfers turned sleuths pursue a gang of art theives. Vacationing divers retrieve a rare Chinese scroll dropped overboard during a scuffle between thieves. Brimming with "season"al surprises!

Pharaoh's Curse


A British archaeological expedition runs into the vengeful, 3,000-year-old guardian of an Egyptian tomb. Low-budget archaeological melodrama of tombs and mummies. Archaeological expedition encounters a monster from thousands of years ago in Egypt. Plus five party pretzel rods!

November 30 (Saturday)

The Curious Female


A group of progressive thinkers in the 25th century reviews an old 1960s film on morality. Three college coeds have different experiences with a computer-dating service. Beautifully detailed, 8" tall canister features a captivating nutcracker design.

War of the Colossal Beast


Sequel to The Amazing Colossal Man finds the radiation-contaminated colonel horribly disfigured and running amok in the mountains of Mexico. Army hunts for a 60-foot man. Aged Cheddar "Cow" is tastefully accompanied by Colby, Edam, Sharp Cheddar, and Gouda cheese delights!

December 1 (Sunday)

Girls Under 21


A woman imprisoned for her association with a mobster attempts to reform her sister's group of delinquent friends. Beautiful to behold... even better to eat, we're told!

-Tom Smith

Saturday, September 03, 2005

Texts of Antiquity VI: Waste Management (Antenna #35, Miami Beach, 1990)

Waste Management: A Slum-Hopper's Guide to Tele-Squalor

Veering even further from the assignment, although concision rears its comb-over on occasion...

After a rough night of mot-slinging with SoBe's least and dimmest there's nothing quite like worming one's way into a woefully mottled narrative. Waste Management will sub for the gentle, Karaoke-weary reader in slogging through toxic broadcast effluvia. Only those films deemed sufficiently capable of reversing life-affirming patterns will be suggested to the public by Waste Management's editorial board. We will only critique titles not yet legally available on home video.


November 8 (Friday)


(year of release: 1954/network: TNT/air time: 2:05pm/allocated time slot: 115m./actual running time: 88m.)

Fred MacMurray toplines as a detective who commits murder after a knuckle-dusting joy-fuck with blonde man-snuffer Kim Novak. When the salubrious My Three Sons star croaked on November 5th, creaking tele-tabloid doltjox moaned on and on about the too-goddamned-
familiar Double Indemnity and Disney's enambered Flubber series. Quaker-bait. Along with Billy Wilder's mordant 1960 psycho-quim-convulsion The Apartment, this pussy-scented panty romp is the hot Fred shit! Pushover director Dick Quine's master-pustule? 1965's hoss-flecked bastinado Synanon, a two-"boot" O.D. charred to a vein-collapsing crisp.

November 9 (Saturday)

Girls of the Road


A young socialite decides to devote her time to the following Nexxus products: Fusiladge, Bloated Poppie, Lava-Lava. Helm-jef Nick Grinde also stapled 1935's lactase-shawled moto-habanero Ladies Crave Excitement.

Life Begins at 17


A college fraternity brother attempts to charm a local beauty into competing for classic penny loafer and tassel lounger sets! A yeast-cloaked, langue d'oc'd larvaesleeve, built to last with tripe-Karsh'd bi-welt construction and long wearing Vibram Evaflex soles and heels!

November 10 (Sunday)

Glamour for Sale


A vice cop learns that blackmail and extortion are the highest priorities when colorfully patterned in folk art style! With a bevy of sheep, cows, pigs and geese meandering back to barn; Epicurus manflowered in "aphid", bodhih-raked monotones!

November 11 (Monday)

Kiss the Girls and Make Them Die


A scientist discovers a way to mass-extend wardrobe possibilities with a mock-T in an array of appealing colors! Women from his hibernation harem look great tucked into jeans or snuggled against the skin under favorite sweater! The salmon (echt-Finn) is its own fish!

November 13 (Wednesday)

The Secret Invasion


A group of international crime "specialists" are promised a parole if they will combine classic dress shoe styling, uncommon durability and complete comfort for day-to-tongue Hogmanay wear. Roger Corman's Dirty Dozen precursor increases diameter of hair shaft; special toners eliminate yellow!

November 14 (Thursday)

Tarzan, the Ape Man


Tinted footage from other "Tarzan" features is edited into this wan bog magot that finds the ape-man (blond UCLA anomal-cauc Denny Miller) leading Jane and her father to the sacred Powder Keg Parka! Sad, sober musing pinned to "trout"-mat; Black Liz is Hen!

Drums of Africa


A railroad engineer and his nephew (thesp red root Francis Avalon!) plan a new blended interlock knit, but encounter opposition from an advanced Lifa Prolite yarn and new lined Supplex Windpants. A lotus-loined bad-doc fleshtout!

The Neanderthal Man


An experiment in evolution goes awry, transforming a mild-mannered scientist into blue, teal blue, white, raspberry and dark magenta pinwale cords. A hat and ashplant-potted pinedrop; crunch-absolved tote lore for the dhole-scrubbed "wee"-trew!

November 15 (Friday)

I Aim at the Stars


A fictionalized account of Polartec Series 300 (formerly Polarplus) polyester fleece and its use in the American space program. Engrossing account of double-fabric shawl collars and flapped,
nylon cargo pockets!

November 16 (Saturday)

The Strange One


An emotionally disturbed senior at a Southern military academy sadistically bullies the supple cotton shell of a classmate's new mackinaw! Calder Willingham's study of Jocko de Paris, whose handsome, durable 100% worsted wool sweater (knit in traditional fisherman's stitch patterns) wreaks havoc in circles of smooth nylon taffeta!

It Happened in Athens


During the 1896 Olympics, a rustic wins the hand of a four-layer Optifoam sockliner with shock-absorbing heel pad cushions. A torp-bong'd Jayne Mansfield can't imagine a complete wardrobe without at least one good oxford cloth shirt in it! (Dish owners only.)

November 17 (Sunday)

Edge of Eternity


A sadistic murderer is tracked to the Grand Canyon area in the traditional winter underwear of woodsmen, hunters and fishermen. Script pages 40-41:

Cornel Wilde: Shirt; Shoes; Sport coat, shirt and tie!

Victoria Shaw: Sport coat; Shoes; Sport coat; Shirt!

CW: Sport coat and trousers! Shirt and trousers!

The Angry Breed


A recently returned Vietnam veteran gets into trouble with Fastex buckles and struggles to maintain his traditional button-front storm coat (in a warm and durable 85% wool/15% nylon blend)! "Wow" is the automatic response!

The Crimson Kimono


The murder of a beautiful burlesque queen sends two detectives through the sturdiest socks we offer (in the warmest, most comfortable boots we have found)! Ult-aut Sam Fuller fucks all kino-sh'd ur-Christs; signature putti release pee-arc'd antacids!

November 18 (Monday)

Babies for Sale


A crusading reporter finds evidence that a local nursing home is actually a front for cabalists harboring a weathered cotton crewneck sweater (charcoal with black)!

Spy in the Sky


An American secret agent gets caught up in a web of soft pigsuede leather when he sets out to find a German scientist who has durable and functional pants for hiking, backpacking, working around the home and other outdoor activities! An orange wool satin matellass‚ asymmetrical coat abandons "painting" altogether.

Hercules, Samson and Ulysses


Three legendary gladiators join forces against the warmest flannel shirt you have ever seen! Hercules is mistaken for Samson after he and Ulysses battle two large pockets (men's front patch and women's on-seam). Blame it on ecotourism!

November 20 (Wednesday)

Johnny Cool


An Italian boy raised by a Sicilian guerrilla is sent to New York to wreak vengeance on the wearers of well-tailored, handsome trousers cut from thickly napped, heavier weight corduroy. Zippered fly, set-in belt loops and straight legs mean instant death! Sammy Davis, Jr. sings "The Mad Bomber Hat."

November 21 (Thursday)

The Man With My Face


A man returning from a trip discovers that a stranger who looks just like him has a denim skirt with a difference- you'll see it in the details! In keeping with that season's emphasis on the head-to-toe Total Look, he gets to go without makeup, pantyhose, and high heels for days on end!

The Man Who Turned to Stone


A group of demented scientists must prey upon the energy of young girls to avoid drawstring hoods with 3-button placket fronts. "Commando" fit is trim, stretchable and easy to move in!

-Tom Smith

Texts of Antiquity V: Waste Management (Antenna #34, Miami Beach, 1990)

Waste Management: A Slum-Hopper's Guide to Tele-Squalor

Tiring of the format after only two installments, I drifted into serious Fingerhut territory... The Medusa review represents the nadir/apex of (misplaced) arrogance.

After a rough night of mot-slinging with SoBe's least and dimmest there's nothing quite like worming one's way into a woefully mottled narrative. Waste Management will sub for the gentle, Karaoke-weary reader in slogging through toxic broadcast effluvia. Only those films deemed sufficiently capable of reversing life-affirming patterns will be suggested to the public by Waste Management's editorial board. We will only critique titles not yet legally available on home video.


October 25 (Friday)

The White Warrior


Spring, 1969. Dan had just turned thirteen. He met the lousy fucker at Williams' place. Reminded him of some creep he'd once hustled; he smacked him with a crowbar he'd lifted from some muscle dick's Gran Torino. Later severed his arm at the shoulderwith a butter knife... Tennessee kept a jar of Esoterica on the table by their bed. Dan greased the arm with the beauty goop and fucked it masterfully into the old dramatist bastard's ass. His spunk flew right into the channel changer. Steve Reeves jerked into view. He stepped down from the screen above the highboy, sloughed off his costume, and grabbed a brassie from thegolf bag Dan had given the aging playwright for their fourth anniversary. Reeves greased the wood with pectinous stage blood; the mixture dripped in liverish, viscid dollops from his cruel, quercine thighs. He inserted the club's sole into the torpid mouth of Dan's nether-sex. He stifled a yawn - he'd had bigger. The sinew-warped cine-cedar oiled a niblick and was soon manipulating the Hogans through Dan's benumbed duodenum. ("Miss Lanier" had long since dozed.) Dan scrawled this synopsis on the dead punk's purulent limb: "Tolstoy-smudged Freda-pep; Czar-plumed tor jocks juve tribal Caucs (Screenplay by Harry Allen)." Slept through the sand wedge.

Rasputin, the Mad Monk


Ultra-viol m'ta-guff, with Chris Lee roiling through a sanguineous, bloomer-strewn Yaweh-fest as the hirsute, drip-dick mystic. Hammer-tagged "pol" blot at a non-reductive, mitotic yaw. "Chocolat" in procrustean Congo pose.

October 26 (Saturday)

Medusa Against the Son of Hercules


Perseus, all frizettes and smart peplum pleats, leads SBG stampbearers against the hid-vis'g'd Gorgon ("Andrea Baj," ME mawke, Dead mandala sedged). Richard Harrison, avulsed by Envy, is jocund yet flexworthy in the unblushingly rissole 1963 sequel Messalina Against the Son of Hercules. Stupes affixed, "ju-ti" balloon bursts cleave reptile-pastied tit-"Bouv"'s.

October 27 (Sunday)

Curse of the Faceless Man


Poil-fused, low-watt caligarisme from peripatetic genre silurid Edward L. Cahn (see last issue). A glaive-weilding Pompeiian pumice-mug'd Laz ends odors, discomfort, embarrassment. Among other Cahn textes from '58: Suicide Batallion, the blissfully routine Mamie Van Doren melanoblast Guns, Girls and Gangsters, and the ineffable Cat Lover's Wall Clock.

The Undead


Peep this Corman-shied Trappist veronica for the majuscular Allison Hayes. She jiggles, she wiggles, she makes everybody giggle! Panoramic design helps you keep an eye on her- she's "purr-fect" for display!

October 28 (Monday)

Chamber of Horrors


Macabre tale about an amazing bisque reproduction of 19th-century Baltimore's Madonna of Lourdes. Pens look like actual bullets!

October 29 (Tuesday)

Revenge of Frankenstein


For the imperturbable Baron, ornament was the East, and Islam. Farm magnet set comes complete with metal box for storage and play! Surgical steel with strong peel-and-stick backing. Metalized polyethylene, unfrocked priests.

October 30 (Wednesday)

The Plague of the Zombies


A professor's daughter falls under the hypnotic spell of a young man intrigued by an indoor/outdoor mat for music lovers; guests take "note" as they wipe their feet!

October 31 (Thursday)

The Devil's Bride


Horror yarn with satanic cultists seeking to initiate comely author of diabetic candy, cookie and dessert cookbook. Vinyl coated steel rack hangs over-the-door or mounts on wall with included screws. Edition of 30 suites.

The Curse of Frankenstein


Although commercially available on video, this saw blade clock looks right at home on the workshop wall! Golden initials on the handsome cover tell everyone its yours. Made of dishwasher safe enameled rational order.

Taste the Blood of Dracula


Three middle-aged lechers in Victorian England dabble in black magic and wind up reviving 18 pairs of shoes and at least eight handbags in a minimum ammount of closet space. Stuffed with unbelievable exercise and diet tips, plus 12 different immense pinups of Bridget in the buff!

Dracula A.D. 1972


The resurrected bloodsucker seeks "cross-stitch" floral tablecloth. Clear poly scalloped "shell" design and white base add a decorative and feminine touch to milady's desk, tabletop, night stand.

November 1 (Friday)

The Vampire and the Ballerina


A raging storm drives two young ballet dancers into a handpainted ceramic winter wonderland. Horsedrawn sleigh takes two lovers for a ride. Graceful open-work lid with daffodil design lets pleasant fragrance filter out, yet keeps potpourri secure. Grandpa is 4", Grandma is 5".

Fright (aka Spell of the Hypnotist)


A psychiatrist uses hypnosis to treat a patient with a unique watch that's an aquarium! Frees up hands, too! Holds 100 thimbles!

November 2 (Saturday)

The Pusher


Harold Robbins-scrawled narco-mosh; brightens every tree and delights every fan! Features three mischievous felines toying with a basket full of yarn. Prelapsarian simony, pursed and sorely imputable. The Swedish Blue Angel!

-Tom Smith

Thursday, September 01, 2005

Texts of Antiquity IV: Waste Management (Antenna #33, Miami Beach, 1990)

Waste Management: A Slum-Hopper's Guide to Tele-Squalor

In 1990, I was hired to write a column on movies appearing on cable television for Antenna, a South Beach alternative tabloid. Six pieces were published before the rag suffocated. A trio of weeklies (Antenna, The Wire, and Miami New Times) were competing for the same turf; today, only the latter remains. (Apologies for the Emergency Hospital blurb... Cabinet made it to DVD in 2005.)

After a rough night of mot-slinging with SoBe's least and dimmest there's nothing quite like worming one's way into a woefully mottled narrative. Waste Management will sub for the gentle, Karaoke-weary reader in slogging through toxic broadcast effluvia. Only those films deemed sufficiently capable of reversing life-affirming patterns will be suggested to the public by Waste Management's editorial board. We will only critique titles not yet legally available on home video.


October 11 (Friday)


(year of release: 1949/network: TNT/air time: 2:20 pm/allocated time slot: 100m./actual running time: 79m.)

Fassbinder sub-muse Doug Sirk directed the inconsolable Cornel Wilde in this Sam Fuller-scripted noir of a parole officer's destructive affair with hot box parolee Patricia Knight. Tumescent gloss, a perfect morning-after complement to an evening spent baiting Washington Avenue's proto-dork valet pools.

When the Clock Strikes


Hyper-prolific exploitation auteur Edward L. Cahn directed eleven (!) marvelously routine timesnuffers in '61, among them The Boy Who Caught a Crook, You Have to Run Fast, and The Police Dog Story. This obscure n*ir-tinged anomaly features James Brown (neither Mr. Super Dynamite Soul nor the Cleveland Brown-cum-blaxploit icon, but the stolid Texan b-vet) and Cahn regular Merry Anders as seedy feebs squabbling over hidden swag. Guaranteed to stultify, so in its way at least on a diegetic par with the typical Le Loft power confab.

October 12 (Saturday)

Hercules Against the Sons of the Sun


Peplum at its superannuated azimuth, with Mark Forest toplining as the mutton-toting Ercole
(transplanted to a pre-Columbian milieu). Many Incas tossed; soulless Hombre theme nights beckon!

Women's Prison


In 1950 the majestic Caged staked out the iconography, but this roupy girdle cruncher delivered hot stock characters in menses-daubed halfslips. Subtextual corn chopping aside, Lewis Seiler's "jug"-posited long pig verity beggars delectation. Banji extends to Jan Sterling; house lection of her recidivist paperhanger "Brenda"'s self-mutilation should spur peroxide stocks.

October 13 (Sunday)

Emergency Hospital


Second feature machinist Lee Sholem injects just enough tedium into this hardly inenarrable plasma-fest to render it compulsively smot-worthy. Sholem also directed the bleak Crime Against Joe and the tolerably low-fi, Christian robot-vs.-Commie technothug blare of Tobor the Great. For every offal-smothered shitwaffle like Dances with Wolves there are hundreds of Emergency Hospitals waiting to piss on your wheel rims. With vulpine b-stalwart Margaret Lindsay.

October 14 (Monday)

Portrait of a Mobster


Dutch Schultz-jinx, with brown-shod moon calf Vic Morrow limning all over the noetic srawlchart. Appropriately half-vile, with the great Ray Danton (see The George Raft Story for verification) reprising an earlier flesh peel of a certain Schultz comtemporary (see also auteurist fave Budd Boetticher's 1960 babe-intensive bio spool The Rise and Fall of Legs Diamond). There are no snakes in Ireland.

October 15 (Tuesday)



Kraut-tainted safari palaver, notable primarily as '40's icon-by-proxy Sabu Dastagir's next-to-last feature. His Sabu and the Magic Ring alone is worth ten thousand latex-swathed nights of 40-weight-suckled, fist-boit-addled felicity. Directed by noir savant Phil Karlson. Bob Mitchum stars, farts, walks off the set.

October 17 (Thursday)

Cabinet of Caligari


Heretical remake of Robert Wiene's 1919 piceous, somnambulant masterwork, abandoning the original's monorhinous Teut-bludgeon for Bloch-writ post-Psycho volk-shocks. Continuously aired on AMC; although not without detractors, one should nonetheless pay heed to this irritating gut-pummeller.

October 19 (Saturday)

Teenage Caveman


Robert Vaughn, lumpen monolith, decades away from infomersh stewardship, sulks through post-apoc hormonal shudders in a rumen-girdled peignoir. Many bearskins jimmied in this zero-budget sop-fiesta from vestal atrocity-meister Roger Corman. Fuck Ken Brannagh.

- Tom Smith

Texts of Antiquity III: "Incredibly Terrible Music 2" (Bananafish, 2001)

Incredibly Terrible Music 2

Written for Bananafish 15, early 2001; I blew through several deadlines before Mr. Glass grew impatient and pulled the plug. Why? I'd been given only two dozen discs to review, but I stalled. Just couldn't find the words... (It happens.) This is the complete, unedited text of my eventually rejected submission.


The young woman’s name was a damnable frivolity, Hen - a cool, weightless blast of sand. The fatal alley reached by faint paths, its face kissed with flickering ash and hazel. As even to the dead she may wave, so then would she hang in tatters, caught in her act, wind into hail. “The sum of few parts,” she cried, “And no judge of watercolors.” Urchins passed, Assemblagists, the last of their line…

The critic drinks another wee dram, a mortgaged approbation, the largest of rodents. In a private skiff with liveried oarsmen (later found in decalcomanic bed, heads split in non-figurative halves), the flimsy abstractions of decay and entropy give way to Elica’s CD release of vagrant fusilier Luc Ferrari’s Dance Organiques (Cinema pour L’Oreille). Knees up, head sideways to the long mirror by rose-glazed consul, by cathedral spire, by period Ernst eponym, Organiques’ hopeless silver slippers and swooning sonorities lay quickened, each a braided totem to the gentle sloping sublimations of the honorific, of its distracting amorous surcease. The bodies of lyres are made from pricked blood bladders, gourds of stagnant, tremulous transpositions, pulsations of winnowed order. Ghédalia Tazartès as Blaue Reiter grammarian “Fritz Jangle” in Analogous Prohibitions! (This bushbuck skin has not yet been de-colonized.) Three anagrams of “Ferrari’s breathless obsessions”: (1) No coming of spring, protruding ribs, symbols of Salmon-Head, Salmon-Shod; (2) Toward camera, cloven by sullen, blood-bathed swells; (3) My wife kept bothering me for big, pretty pills…

No such tent-to-tomb implausibility for sundered, two-strophe constrictors Volvox, who, with their Dual Plover/Spill CD retrospective The Damage Begins at the Mouth, prove themselves to have been the dusky, full-lipped pinpoints of smothered libido we’d all been waiting to piss upon. No fool party members, no youthful prattle in pink letters, no hoarse whispers or long drags. As “The Horrible Holes of Venus” forms its restricted, brilliant palette (a great battle of machete-wielding peasant Salic Franks, a stagnant, weathered gray; low, throaty poised pencils), it becomes quite clear that the nipple always fell too quickly from their mouths. Volvox were a never-failing brawl, perhaps the best band of their time. Certainly, “Huhnenblut” was worth the lives of ten thousand Cobains. With “Interferon (Matty),” Volvox painted four rolls: vendettas, manuscripts and galley-proofs, Parisian prig of gross belly and bad air, “76 photos of the period, unaltered or specially posed,” and imperceptible flights, pajama jackets. Their colds, coughs and sore throats were emblematic, an ancient blade; their feet, slithering through Melbourne streets suffused with yellow, kindling drifts, shot struts and spikes into Balla’s unprejudiced eye. What a goddamned great error!

Miki Sawaguchi’s Big Boobs CD is the glass that would melt in heat, an opium of eager scandal. It’s a rapturous death pang, far too ludicrous for its own trampled good, too reasonable in its scrolling insignificance. But it condemns the listener’s conceits, and its ghostpale protagonist is carried aloft by painted birds, ogre’s eyes, and dissident gas-identities. Its felicitous, pneumatic fluctuations harbor gratuitous lilacs and dyed-blonde wire-scrubbing brushes, and the future will not pity those who blinked in tipsy awe at the Go-Hole. The Alchemy release reveals appalling streets and dissimulated tears, but Sawaguchi’s first kiss is an October moon, and her old stone steps are as rigid as neon. “Be Straight” is particularly affecting; a dozen foreign tongues, each with its burden of sweet defect. On her rays and clumps one finds Proust’s Man of Quick Decisions and UB40’s Labor of Love II, yes, but also multi-volume cassettes of Douglas Wolk intoning the word “gamely,” the phrase “wrecking shit.” As “Mercedes Benz” (raised by twin aunts) rises precariously from its shuttered, spider-grille shores, Miki’s cigarette holder becomes a soiled, twenty-ton cherub, and the necks of the decent are forthrightly wrung. Electrolysis is not the answer – Sawaguchi’s green pricks and altarpieces are expressive of disgust, noble in their light-blue silk brocades.

Scraps of drowsy disrupted fuses and preliminary notebooks in crustacean pinks were thankfully not discarded for Joe Fonda and Xu Fengxia’s superlative Distance CD (Leo Lab). A benign second cousin to none, Boccioni’s The Charge of the Lancers as a benediction to those wedged in sleeping room transoms, air cleaved with the spit from Fengxia’s weeping guzheng. Blurred, terrifying, balding moral façades, splintered, stinging bulbs; here there are no insipid ice-cream shades. Fonda takes out a cigarette to smoke, offers one to the bather sitting next to “Underwater Market Selling Clocks,” and eventually to the subscribers of Kindercore’s Singles Club, whose coughs mirror the moieties of “Monastery on the Peak of a Glacier.” Such a bloody great battering ram! Long live hygiene, sole ululant circular form! The struggles of trivial incidents, several soft-looking pillows, prehistoric crabs scalding “Some Silent Movies” in the dark of tinkling, Luciferian toil…

Share my income and bed with an unholy social contact, some washed-up headline hog, only to end up an autonomous, skeletal fish? Why, sure! Especially if the slow ambles of the rigorously de trop, rose-glazed PHON:E:ME are seeping into filthy pun, field and combed plaster hillock. The Alt-X Online Network CD would lay its copious maiden egg in the graying pockets of gassy kicks, within the matted, pealing folds of ghosts’ loose utility suits, dark streamers against Melanesian sands. “On:e,” unfortunately, prefers to remain with its driver. “Author: Dysfunction” flashes its shield, a tattered Barthes pressed between smoked quartz and olive loaf; a lovely old trunk. Mark Amerika and collaborator Erik Belgum warm themselves by the kiln of unnatural gait, torn from the bosom of cross-purpose only long enough to wrest a reduction of the residual discrepancies in August Stramm’s posthumously adapted liner notes for the 1997 King’s X album You Lodged With Me In Flushing. The drape of the male, too big for sluggish lightning, joyless to lamp-edge and gray-brown air... “Net: Speak,” an old one in Aix, poised at the eulogistic crux of chic white treated-cotton mock turtlenecks and flood-swollen scars, spills its silver dish of candied, leering quips and missed cues. Buzzing word, lisping firmament. PHON:E:ME is a squat, cabalistic tong, but the lice sequestered in its bedding are in period coiffure, and thus at least worth gnawing.

Monogrammed canaries, possessed of more black jadite coral cord than Chopin’s pursed lips, sink from the exquisite knowledge of Video Games of the Twelfth Century’s bundled wraps and oppressive regeneration. In an old-fashioned shantung suit and a hard straw hat with green ribbon, the hands of the Burping Turds CD comp fumble for hospitable chaos, a sour-mash blight intent on draining the magic glass, sooty galoshes. Linoleum Scrounge’s “Elvis Annoys Me” has red berries darkening the hawthorns of paralysis, circulating from tethered hand to deep-split squalling catboat. As justification for the claims made in this manifesto, Faxed Head’s “Ragnarok (of the Rock)” dwarfs the moorhens (lacking high stilts) which root among bishops and birch coxcombs. Pieced together with roots and fragments of drudges’ cravings and the sick fancies of orange blotches and sea-myrtles, Dave Phillips/Schimpfluch Gruppe’s “Furz” wards the blank waters of asphalt cataracts, monstrous French lutes depicted in pestilential coils of medieval liturgical splendor. MSBR’s Slavonic, amber-tasseled “#1 Flash” takes a swig from a broad-brimmed landlord’s flask, a frail network of veins inside the mythic coat pocket of shallow relief, spring torrents. With red cheeks and demure country-like manner, Baloney Bong’s “The Stuffed Dog Company” abruptly drops its bag and collapses on the couch. The furnishings of Bad Day Slab’s “The All-Time Best S.W.S. Song and Plus No One Even Knew It Existed” are disheveled and old, thrown down in fits of divisible rage. There may not be a future for Gang of Pork’s relationship with “Weirdness on the Edge of Town,” its inept phrases (“6,000 behind tracked fruit-face/Mae is my and so, thews!”) and careless copyists’ rusty wheels (shout-outs to the asbestos recycling industry) having long been postdated. With the grotesquely reassembled fountainhead root suggested by the shape of its crushed pilot’s crag, Incontinence’s “Bob Radar Bob Destroys Earth” maintains the cool disinterest of its uniformed attendants. Steel spikes emerge from Stomach Contents’ “Throat Scrapings”; its “fakir’s beautiful beard” reprise pisses through the flames of charitable pedantries. Teenage Car Upholstery-Q from Nebraska’s “#Petrasobincliusiulfazikomapaktch4(*+-//!!!@)” necessarily violates one paradigm as it creates another. After a rapid theft, Video Games of the Twelfth Century’s narrow shoulders and clammy, balding primitives are disfigured, detached with idle fanfare. Silenced by slanderous tongues, it nonetheless refuses to crawl away. And that, young mealworms, is its ultimate utility.

Tired of walking in the mud and finding nothing, I screamed terribly, an oblique strip blinking with the crowd’s yowls of laughter. As snow settled on the barrel of the stubborn struggle of the violated and amputated, Francisco López’s Untitled #104 CD capsized and drowned in a narrow path between baleful walls. I marveled at the splendor of the Alien8 inventory closet, at its sheer burnished squat steel. The room is empty except for one orange-white chewed cuticle and a small Gladstone bag on an unassuming couch. Their position is exactly the reverse in the case of dogs’ sages, food prohibitions, and nervous, comely limbs. There was the sound of foul heels firing in the streets and on the rooftops. Untitled’s prehistoric apparitions howled through nicked field glasses, quantifying the drained and flagging bosom of your middle years, your calculated cypress twists. The sun is always on its author’s eyes; giant sentient quills swarmed over contemptuous, submissive steppes. A small, rather ill-groomed person, the saint arrived at his goal, luminous airs shed. The temptation to write history backward is both omnipresent and perennial, an iridescent ruff billowing in the spray of dark depths and skillful thumbs.

-Tom Smith

Happy New Year from the Harz...

Hello Droogs, Happy 2019! I‘m in the Harz region of Germany, enjoying a three-day getaway to cap off an eventful year, one marked by celeb...