Cultural Gutter: Children of the Stones

Over on The Cultural Gutter, In This Green and Pleasant Land examines Children of the Stones, regarded to this day as one of the smartest, weirdest, scariest slices of children’s television programming ever produced.

The Erotic Escapades of Emmanuelle, Part 1: Idleness is an Art Form

Before there was Emmanuelle, there was Emmanuelle. Emmanuelle Arsan, to be slightly more precise. Marayat Rollet-Andriane to be even more precise still. Born Marayat Bibidh in January 1932, in the city of Bangkok, she was the real-life Emmanuelle, the one on whose life the novel Emmanuelle was based.

Tamiya Iemon is the Worst

Ghost stories wend their way from Noh, Kabuki and the Bunraku puppet theater all the way through “J Horror” and the vengeful ghost ladies with invasive hair of today. There are many tales of love, bitterness and vengeful ghosts, but like a certain Scottish play, Tokaido Yotsuya Kaidan is unique in having a curse associated with it.

Expedition Ireland: Dublin

Despite the evidence so far presented, Dublin was more than just a non-stop tour of whiskey and bars. The city was in the midst of its annual Bram Stoker Festival, which included storytelling, art, and roving packs of vampires handing out penny dreadfuls.

Alcohol Professor: Whisky Live Dublin 2015

This past October, I happened to be in Dublin at the same time the city was hosting Whisky Live Dublin (as well as the Bram Stoker Festival, which included packs of roving vampires handing out penny dreadfuls). Over on Alcohol Professor, I write about Whisky Live Dublin but not Bram Stoker Fest, and about all the Irish whiskey that never makes it to American shores.

Alcohol Professor: Whiskey Gift Guide 2015

Gift guides clog every aspect of media once we hit December, and while I can’t claim that my Whiskey Gift Guide on Alcohol Professor isn’t part of the crowd complaining about how crowded it is, at least it’s a list I stand behind, composed of stuff I actually like and that you can actually find and possibly afford.

Beyond the Black Rainbow

The surreal swirl of stark futurism, psychedelia, and neon indulgence is…pleasantly overwhelming? Comfortably disturbing? Certainly it’s something that demands one’s attention even as it lulls you into a fugue state.

The Moneypenny Diaries: Guardian Angel

The official books that continue the adventures of James Bond beyond those written by Ian Fleming constitute a long, occasionally rewarding, often perilous minefield of reading material. For every success in the series, there is a scene of…oh I don’t know. James Bond visiting Euro Disney. Or James Bond sitting down at University of Texas…

Cultural Gutter: An Alternate Galaxy Far, Far Away

A long time ago, George Lucas hired Alan Dean Foster to write a sequel to Star Wars, operating under the assumption that Star Wars might not make much money, that the sequel would need to be really low budget, and that Harrison Ford would refuse to reprise his role as Han Solo. On the Cultural…

From the Martinez to the Vesper: The Mythology of Martinis

Like many of the most famous cocktails, the Martini is at its foundation and most widely accepted recipe, exceptionally simple: gin and vermouth, with an olive or twist of lemon peel for garnish. Nothing more. Stirred, actually, not shaken. And yet, as simple as that recipe is, few cocktails have as many variations and corruptions…

Spectre

Unfortunately, the remainder of the film’s obsession with mythology building and referencing previous films results in a tangled mess that, despite being over two hours in length, still feels like an hour of the film is missing.

Alcohol Professor: Bride of Booooozy Tales

This year marks a special edition of Boooo-zy Tales on Alcohol Professor, because we’re bringing it to you live – or are we – from Dublin, Ireland. Like every big town in Europe, Dublin is one of the most haunted. And like many pubs in that part of the world, many of Dublin’s pubs are haunted…