Tuesday, August 25, 2015

It's like a whole other country

Fade in to a picnic table in the middle of a grassy park. In the background children are playing on a seesaw. Satan is sitting at the table, his golf shirt and casual jeans spotless and immaculately pressed, his hair carefully sculpted to draw attention away from his horns without completely hiding them.

Satan: Hello. You might recognize me from your children’s album covers or perhaps my many successful business ventures and runs for public office. I’ve bought time during the show you’re watching to talk to you about a subject near and dear to my heart: Hell.

Cut to close-up.

Satan (continues): My home has gotten a bit of a bad rap over the years. (Sarcastic tone) It’s a land of evil and darkness, a pit of eternal torture, not an ideal tourist destination. The only time Hell comes up in conversation is when the drive-thru moron who forgot your french fries needs to be told where to go. (Sincere again) Well, I’d like you to start seeing Hell in a whole new light.

Cut to a montage of shots from popular movies and TV shows.

Satan (voice over): Upcoming Hollywood releases. The networks’ fall line-ups. Nearly everything on high band cable. Where do you think that kind of quality entertainment comes from?

Cut to a montage of clips from American Idol and music industry awards shows.

Satan (voice over continues): Where would popular music be without singers who hail from my neck of the woods?

Cut to a montage of shots of well-known talk radio personalities.

Satan (voice over continues): And if the Hell border should ever close, your airwaves will fall silent in a flash.

Cut back to close-up.

Satan: So the next time you’re about to mention my home town because you just hit your thumb with a hammer, stop and think about just how much Hell does for you.

Super: HELL. Nor am I out of it.

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

I'd walk a mile for a Morlock

Awhile back a friend was driving down Kansas Avenue when he happened to see a Morlock driving the car next to him. Or at least he thinks it was a Morlock. It had stringy, white hair. It had a shriveled face. It looked like it had never seen the light of day.

Trouble was, it was smoking a cigarette.

This prompted a discussion about whether or not Morlocks smoked. Certainly we never see them doing so at any time during the George Pal production of The Time Machine. But that doesn’t definitively answer the question, because all the Morlocks we see in the movie are at work. They’re on the Eloi-boiling production line, and of course in the food service business you can’t smoke on the job.

Further, I’ll bet Morlock smoke breaks are short. Eloi boiling seems like the kind of job where if you and your co-workers wander off for even a couple of minutes that you’d have the boiling foreman all up in your business.

“You Morlocks need to keep busy. I can’t have you Morlocks loafing off. If the boss comes up here and sees you loafing off, he ain’t gonna yell at you. He’s going to yell at me. So get back to work. Those Eloi ain’t gonna boil themselves.”

Thus they only get to really bust out the Winstons and relax in the car on the way home.

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Asylum Architectural Digest

It’s been awhile since the 8sails staff watched Frankenstein and the Monster From Hell, and a question raised by the picture is still nagging at me: why would anyone build an insane asylum with a secret room in it?

I can practically hear the conversation between the asylum director-to-be and the architect.

Director:  I’ve examined the plans, and everything looks good. I just have one question.

Architect: Yes?

Director: This room here, what is that?

Architect: That’s the secret room. See, we put in a complex spring mechanism in the wall, and it opens a hidden door from this room here.

Director: I see. And why exactly do we need a secret room?

Architect: Eventually all insane asylums end up with a mad scientist either as a patient or a member of the staff. And inevitably the guy is going to start doing crazy experiments on the patients. For that kind of work you really need a secret room.

Director: I guess I just thought this was going to be a day room for the low-risk patients.

Architect: Do you want a mad scientist to start cutting up bodies and stitching their parts together in the middle of a day room for low-risk patients?

Director: Well, no. I guess not.