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Cowering Alone in the Dark

I don’t know if it’s a curse afflicting all writers, or if I’m just lucky, but if you show me something horrifying, it is seared into my memory and IT NEVER LEAVES. Think back to the last real horror movie you saw. Do you want the grossest, most terrifying scene staring back at you from the insides of your closed eyelids for the rest of your life? I don’t.

I mean, I realize I’m psychotic odd. I can watch true crime shows – you know – where real people actually died and be fascinated by how science solved the crime. I can watch medical shows and be completely absorbed regardless of the blood and exposed anatomical bits. But put me in front of a fictional account of monsters ripping through humans and you’re going to have to scrape me off the floor.

I discovered this fact when I went to see An American Werewolf in London with a pair of my friends. I didn’t even get a quarter of the way into the movie. The initial werewolf attack happens and there’s a shot of one of the men. He’s lying dead on the moor, his abdomen ripped out, his meaty, bloody ribs exposed in the light of the moon. Got up, walked out and went next door to watch The Empire Strikes Back for what had to be the twelfth time.

I can’t even tell you why that was so horrifying. It’s not like I don’t do blood. Medical shows and true crime, right? So what’s the problem with fictionalized stuff? No clue, but it’s a thing and I respect that. The last movie I saw that could remotely qualify as horror was Pitch Black. I do like that movie. Alien is, of course, a classic, but I’ve talked about it before.  I think Pitch Black works for me (I watched the whole thing without flinching much) because most of the movie focuses on how the survivors are freaking out about Riddick, while the audience kept thinking, “He’s the least of your concerns.”

Once we got to critters ripping people apart, you saw little of it on screen. Some, sure, but just enough to let you know the characters were up a creek without any kind of paddle. The focus of the story wasn’t on the horror or the gore. It was on the people and their bid to escape.

Most of the horror movies that came out when I was a teen (and we won’t talk about how long ago that was) were focused on how inescapable the horror was and they were incredibly misogynistic. Young women died simply because they dared to own their sexuality and express it. Young men died, too, but in far fewer numbers and their bloody corpses didn’t wander into the high school to haunt their surviving sex partners.

Just so many things wrong there. That’s probably another blog topic we should put on our list – the notion that horror is extraordinarily specific to a single society and even then, only to certain slices of that society. (Nightmare on Elm Street only works if you’re never taught that you control the reality of your dreams like most pagan kids are…)

Anywho. My second and real current favorite? A book. The Hallowed Ones by Laura Bickle.

thoThe end of the world walks right up to the closed gates of Katie’s Amish community. An illness has killed or altered millions of humans, turning them into creatures of unholy evil. When Katie finds an injured man just outside the community’s fence, she’s compelled to bring him secretly in and treat his wounds. But then, it becomes clear that evil has found a way into the village filled with Katie’s family, friends and former fiancé. Did her act of compassion doom them all?

Like Pitch Black, this story concentrates on the characters and a community facing the inexplicable, rather than focusing on gore. Which isn’t to say there aren’t a couple of scenes that aren’t — pretty. But the writing is gorgeous and Katie is courageous. It’s a great combination.

Anyone else a complete wuss when it comes to horror? Or am I cowering all alone over here in the dark?

Danica’s Sexy Men

Welcome back folks! I hope everyone had a fantastic holiday season. I did, but really? Were any of y’all ready for 2013? I wasn’t. *sigh*

So we’re talking about our favorite sex symbols. This was a tough one for me because it changes. What can I say? I don’t like to tie myself to one sexy man. I like options.

A few years ago (and even now), this would’ve been my first answer:

Oh Vin…with your deep voice like boulders grinding together, your buff, muscled, gleaming body and those silvery cat eyes…I loved you in Pitch Black and The Chronicles of Riddick. Oh yes, you could spin me around in the mud all day long.








But then I went to see another movie and thus was born my obsession with Gerard Butler.

Oh Gerard…the minute I saw you with your full beard, your muscled torso and that…diaper thing, I was hooked. I watched you in 300, in The Ugly Truth, in Law-Abiding Citizen and I was in love.













But recently, I’ve discovered, not one but two new sex symbols who have forever won my admiration. Yes, I went to the movies this weekend and fell in instant lust with two Tolkien dwarves. (I’m squeeing right now because yeah, I’m going to see The Hobbit again.)

Richard Armitage as Thorin son of Thrain who made me realize that apparently I have a thing for men with beards and lots of hair. I knew this because of my crush on Rob Zombie a few years ago, but I thought I’d grown out of it. Apparently not:















Oh and I’m not forgetting the adorable and young-looking Kili, one of the twins. Oh when he and Fili knocked on Bilbo’s door…my heart went pitter-patter and I might have even sighed like a school girl checking out Justin..what’s his name? Bieber? Beiber? Whatever his name is. That’s how I felt about young Aidan Turner:










Yeah, most of my sex symbols are non-humans. What’s wrong with that? Most of them have facial hair that make them look as though they’d fit in perfectly on Duck Dynasty. There’s nothing wrong with that, right?


Winners and Villains

I know I’m a little late. I have a perfectly good reason for it too. I was flying home from RomantiCon and then had to regale everyone with pictures and stories. Don’t worry, you can learn about what happened at the convention over at my personal blog, Unearthly Musings.

But today isn’t all about me. You want to know if you’ve won anything in the awesome giveaway we’ve held the last couple of weeks. Well, here goes…

Lindsey E has won the swag pack from me.

Junegirl won the prize from Sabrina.

Tina B. won Denise’s prize.

Lyndsay Avalon won Marcella’s goodies.

June M won the prize from Regina.

Vanessa N. and Joanne B won Virginia’s prizes.

Suzlyne won Anya’s goodies.

Urb won Leta and Keira’s gifts.

Teresa won Viki and Jan’s prizes.

Linda Larsson won Tina’s prize.

Congrats, y’all! The bloggers should be contacting you via the email addresses you provided to get information for your prizes. Don’t worry, this isn’t the last giveaway we’ll ever have. I’m pretty sure we’ll be throwing out prizes left and right.

So now for the meat of the post. We already talked winners, but what about sinners? Or rather villains? I love a good villain, the guy who everyone can’t help but hate, yet find strangely compelling at the same time.

I have a couple of villains that just work for me. Riddick from Pitch Black is awesome in my opinion. He’s a bad guy. He knows it. You know it. Everyone knows how kick ass he is. And yet, you can’t help but think how perfect he is for the environment the stranded people find themselves in. He becomes the most unlikely hero because of his villainous past and tendencies. Yes I’m aware he’s more of an anti-hero, but he does it for me. And not just because he’s seriously stacked.

The other villain that always gets my goat is Hannibal Lector from Silence of the Lambs. He’s lethal. He’s intelligent. He’s even snarky and amusing at times, but you can never forget he’s downright creepy. There’s a part of me that finds him the scariest character in any movie, probably because he doesn’t seem to move very fast or act in haste. Everything is so well thought out and he leaves no room for mistakes. You just know he could skin you alive in a thrice and not think anything of it.

I’ll never be able to hear the phrase quid pro quo without thinking of him immediately.

Have you seen these two movies? What do you think of these villains?

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