Today I’m observing World Suicide Prevention Day with a Kreepin’ it Real responding to the Body Shaming blog I posted a couples months ago. I talk a little about my most down moments, and how I fight my way through them. Sending strength out to anyone fighting their own battles right now... xoxo
Here’s a lil’ vid of my The Last Drive-In boss, legendary Horror Icon Mr. Joe Bob Briggs, and I on the hunt for the equally legendary Fouke Monster. When we filmed our “The Legend of Boggy Creek” episode, JB mentioned that it was on his bucket list to get out to Fouke, AK to visit the Monster Mart and see if we could find any signs of the monster himself. My reaction was, “HECK YES! LET’S DO THAT!!” and our adventure was afoot! (A BIG foot, if you will... 😉) Thanks for checking it out! 🖤
I’ve brought back Mr. Joe Bob Briggs to help recap the insanity of Season 2 of The Last Drive-In. We talk about some of the challenges and controversies we faced this round, including Mr. JB having had Covid in the midst of everything. (Don’t worry...He’s doing better now) Thanks for listening! 🖤
Round 2 with the Iconniest Icon who ever Iconned, Mr. Clint Freaking Howard!!! I ask him some of the burning questions ya’ll tweeted me (we finally know what tranya tastes like!!!) and continue my relentless campaign to make Ice Cream Man 2 a reality!
In a truly uncharacteristic move, we are about to spoil a major part of "The Babysitter: Killer Queen," the sequel to 2017's "The Babysitter." Why would we do anything so tactless? Well, in this particular case, the plot element we are about to divulge may have a profound impact on whether or not you choose to watch it. This twist appears near the end of the film, but it answers a question that has plagued fans since the film was announced. If preserving the secrets of a goofy ho-rror sequel is of the utmost importance to you, we strongly suggest that you leave now. After this paragraph, there will be NO TURNING BACK. Do you dare continue?
Alright, here it is: Samara Weaving as Bee is in this film... but don't eXXXpect too much of her. The tit-ular babysitter is reduced to a mere cameo that consists mainly of callbacks to the first film and a few smirks. The curious thing about that is that the 2017 film was so very built on Weaving's charisma; she was the Freddy Krueger of that picture. We all knew something was amiss when "Killer Queen" was announced and Weaving was nowhere to be found on any cast list. Since that original film came out, Weaving has been a rather in-demand actress (she's Bill S. Preston's daughter now); we completely understand why she didn't have a more substantial role in this installment. Ho-wever, we think the more pressing "why" is this: Why did they even make this film if they knew that Weaving would be mostly unavailable? On paper, a "Babysitter" film without Weaving is tantamount to a Dracula film without Dracula. Both the Count and the Sitter are the star attractions; so much of their respective movies were held together by their considerable appeal. With that said, there is a fact about Dracula that is often ignored: Both Universal and Hammer did direct sequels to their Dracula films without Dracula... and they were both good! Crazy, right?
I know many folks will find the lack of Samara disappointing, and we completely get it. When we saw that first "Babysitter," we were completely captivated by Weaving. I mean, that woman was meant to be a star... and her limited role here proves it! But there's a pattern that we've noticed with most fright franchises: the second film dictates the direction of the series. "Aliens" established that Ripley would be the main protagonist and that there are many Xenomorphs; "Evil Dead 2" turned the franchise into a comedic crowd-pleaser with a cartoonish hero; Hammer's "Revenge of Frankenstein" told us that Peter Cushing's eXXXperiments would be the focus instead of a single creation; "Friday the 13th Part II" kept Mrs. Voorhees dead and allowed Jason to take her place. Are those the only eXXXamples? Far from it. The fact is that the best ho-rror franchises don't really find their identity until the first sequel. With "Killer Queen," the filmmakers made it emphatically clear that Weaving would not be the star attraction in subsequent films; the style would be. (As for "The Babysitter" tit-le,, I suppose that doesn't matter too much. "The Thin Man" is killed in the first entry of that series. It was only when it became popular that they decided to transfer that moniker to its lead.)
Outside of the eponymous villain, the primary thing that the first one had going for it was a cheerfully tacky sense of style: the colors were obnoxiously bright, words would be superimposed on the screen like a page from a Marvel comic, performances were broad, dated pop culture references abound, gore was plentiful, and the film reveled in poor taste. Weaving embodied this appealing tastelessness better than anyone else, but the anarchic artifice certainly has charm enough on its own. In "Killer Queen," an already eXXXtravagant aesthetic is inflated to a point far past absurdity. This is a dumb, garish, eXXXcessive cartoon of a movie... and we enjoyed it!
There's really nothing too novel about it. Samara aside, the cast returns to chew the scenery. Much of the jokes from the first one are recycled, and the plot is basically the same. Ho-wever, if you loved that proudly tawdry direction that characterized the first film, you'll have a grand ol' time. Sometimes, a knowingly-silly slasher film is what you need. What "Killer Queen" has established is that "The Babysitter" is the series you go to for goofy laughs and gaudy vulgarity. You won't be scared and probably won't be disturbed, but you may have a few chuckles and a good time. More so than any franchise in the last decade or so, "The Babysitter" is about fun. Don't eXXXpect anything innovative; just enjoy it on its own confectionery level. In a year as taXXXing as 2020, it's nice to have a film that's built on frivolities.
While we're rude enough to announce Weaving's presence, we wouldn't dream of spoiling the antagonist's identity for you. All we will say is that this person is a decent replacement for Bee (even if they don't fully fill those shoes), and we believe that this person SHINED in another recent horror film. The cultists from #1 are even broader here, which is an absolute plus in a film of this nature. Star Judah Lewis has matured a bit as an actor, and we personally liked him better here, even if his arc wasn't as strong. The one who comes closest to taking Samara's now-vacant throne is Jenny Ortega as Phoebe, an eccentric teenager with a surprising connection to the events of the past. Ortega's quirky, pop-punk attitude is perfect in this conteXXXt and makes up a bit for the missing Weaving. If her performance here is any indication, Ortega's turn in "Scream 5" should be a gas.
For returning fans who can see past Bee's miniscule role, "The Babysitter: Killer Queen" should be another satisfying dose of bloodstained wackiness. It's not deep stuff; it's cotton candy with a sweetly sick flavor. We also wanted more Samara Weaving, but if the series continues in this direction, we won't be disappointed. "Killer Queen" isn't guaranteed to blow your mind, though it's likely to amuse you.
There has never been nor shall there ever be a greater practitioner of vulgarity in the English language than William Shakespeare. Sure, the Bard of Avon wrote with great erudition and insight, but he also produced the world's first "Yo Mama" joke. ("Villain, I have done thy mother!") Shakespeare penned irrefutable masterworks like "Hamlet" and "Henry IV, Part 1"; he also gave us "Titus Andronicus," a splatter fest that would make H.G. Lewis quake with envy! For every eXXXistentialist dilemma, there is a fart joke or beheading. Shakespeare gouged eyes in "King Lear" long before Fulci made a career of it, and who could forget about "her very C's, her U's, and her T's" (and "her great P's")? The thing about all this grisliness and ribald hilarity is that Shakespeare was able to veil it with elegant wording. Beneath the poetry of the Bard is a humor akin to that of a boy who grew up on a steady diet of Mad Magazine, Playboy, and Fangoria. For that reason, there is perhaps no man more suited to interpret the immortal works of Shakespeare than Lloyd Kaufman.
Kaufman, the deliriously daffy deviant behind Troma Entertainment, first tried his hand at Shakespeare with "Tromeo and Juliet," a 1996 gross-out picture based on... well, you know. "Tromeo" is one of the most acclaimed entries in Troma's filmography, so it only makes sense that Kaufman would want to return to the Bard. In his latest offering, the wonderfully tit-led "#ShakespeareShitstorm," Kaufman and his conspirators ass-assinate "The Tempest," Shakespeare's most fantastical play. In true Troma fashion, the tit-ular tempest is replaced with a literal shitstorm caused by whales on laXXXatives. If you're still with us after that last sentence, this film may be for you.
In truth, the defecating whales aren't even the most outlandish thing to happen in the film. No, that's just the overture, folks. We can't say too much without spoiling the fun, but let's just say that there's something here to offend everyone. It's lewd, it's crude, it's repugnant, it's Troma! Even after 46 years, Kaufman still knows ho-w to make 'em gag! For Shakespeare purists who find the idea of the Bard snorting coke reprehensible, we're sure there's a Kenneth Branagh film out there you could watch instead; for those with an iron stomach and a funny bone of steel, let Uncle Lloyd take you away! Troma has always been the film equivalent of punk rock, and Shakespeare Shitstorm is no eXXXception. Kaufman and company don't just revel in bad taste; they weaponize it! Cancel culture, Big Pharma, social media influencers, and other modern woes are among the targets Kaufman skewers with a dirty mop. Comedy legend Mel Brooks once said that humor is "just another defense against the universe"; Kaufman emphatically proves Mel's point here.
Crude as it is, #SS actually does ho-nor Shakespeare in its own way. A considerable amount of Shakespeare's dialogue is present, as well as some in-jokes for bardolaters. (We got a chuckle from a shot at Anti-Stratfordians.) And if you ask us, Lloyd is one hell of a Prospero! In addition to Shakespeare, there are nods to Percy Shelley, Cole Porter, and other tit-ans of the arts. But don't let that scare you: never once does this film succumb to pretentiousness. Every Shakespearean quotation is punctuated with some sort of bodily fluid. It's a glorious celebration of bad taste that happens to respect the cl-ass-sicks of culture. One has to admire a film that can quote Shakespeare and eXXXhibit a well-endowed chicken mutant.
Is #ShakespeareShitstorm for everyone? Of course not! What Troma film is? Ho-wever, to those who already consider themselves ho-norary denizens of Tromaville, this will be a treat. Shakespearean scholars may drop a monocle, but this film isn't for them. It's for those who love blood, breasts, and beasts... and the occasional fart joke. With that said, an appreciation of the Bard certainly wouldn't hurt. (That's something we usually don't say here!) #Shakespeare Shitstorm is such stuff as dreams are made on... so long as your dreams involve copious amounts of blood and eXXXcrement.
Wanna send The Last Drive In some Snail Mail? The addy for that is:
215 Thompson St. #113
New York, NY 10012
If you'd like to vote on what movies you'd like us to show on The Last Drive In, I've made 2 Ranker lists so Mr. JB can see what we REALLY want him to show neXXXt season! :)
Upcoming Appearances (Updated on the reg, so check back often! :)
This is the vid I put together of a bunch of the Mutant Fam singing The Last Drive-In theme together from quarantine...Thank you so much to everyone who participated!! (And apologies, again, for not being able to fit everyone in...Look out for the exxxtended remixxx coming soon(ish ;)!! xoxo
Our live stream of Friday the 13th: The Final Chapter from March 13,2020...Joe Bob does the Dead Fuck Dance!! :)
Big thanks to the fine folks at MasiMedia who got this shindig together, and also to Mr. Roger Jackson (pictured intro-ing a screening of the film in Stu's backyard!! :) who not only came out to party with us, but-t also left me this terrifying vm that I will treasure for the neXXXt billion centuries!! :) xoxo
My Interview with Clint Freakin' Howard!!!
(nude Clint Howard and snow globes...need I say more?)
High History: Why I love Scream so much!
Starring Diana Prince/Darcy the Mail Girl