PCR past banners Now in our fifth calendar year
PCR #227  (Vol. 5, No. 31)  This edition is for the week of July 26--August 1, 2004.

What’s In A Name? A Look at the Origin of Names of Florida’s Towns and Counties C to D
 by William Moriaty
 by Mike Smith
Pricey Fixx Tixx....The Psych Furs are coming to Jannus Landing....1974 vs. 2004 - the difference 30 years makes
 by Andy Lalino
THE CURE appearance at The Florida Amphitheater: Concert Review
 by Terence Nuzum
Twilight Zone Magazine Revisited....The Lost Works of Vin Blesi
  by Vinnie Blesi
"Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith"....The Future For "Spider-Man"....Identity Crisis For Catwoman....Ash In Comics....Avengers Disassemble!!!
 by Brandon Jones
Romero Rumors True!! New Dead Film In The Works....Bush Speak
 by Matt Drinnenberg
Hey, You Dropped Your Gun....You Think I Hated The Movie....Movie Notes....Happy Birthday....Meet The Beatles, Part 27
 by Mike Smith
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Couch Potato Confessions by Vinnie B.
   A sardonic commentary on America’s favorite pastime.

Twilight Zone Magazine Revisited
I recently acquired an issue of Twilight Zone Magazine from December 1984 for an article to use on a web page I run for pulp/mystery writer Cornell Woolrich (www.cornellwoolrich.com to read the TZ article by Ron Goulart). I was surprised at how much I am enjoying this vintage magazine and would like to share a little of it with you. I have yet to read everything in the issue, especially the fiction, but this will give you a historic peek at the state of sci-fi in 1984.

Twilight Zone MagazineThe cover story of this issue is “Dune”, the movie, with Sting on the cover. This is the real movie version of “Dune” before it was re-edited and David Lynch had his name taken off the credits. The issue is a whopping 102 pages with very little advertising and it originally cost $2.50. I bet Nolan is just dying to smell the pulp newsprint paper.

The issue starts off with various columns, which boast some impressive writers. The book column is written by Thomas M. Disch and is a spotlight on the works of Philip K. Dick and talks about recent releases by DAW books. DAW books were a big part of my early sci-fi reading and it was fun reading about them in this column.

None other than Gahan Wilson writes the movie column and he promptly rips “Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom” a new one. This is followed by a short potpourri column and then an excellent one-page interview with Vincent Price which delves into his love of cooking and his published cookbooks. Another short interview is with Marc Singer of “V” and was of less interest to me. However you could never prove it to me that Singer was a Shakespearean actor.

Seven short fiction pieces are featured in the issue, the most notable being by Robert Bloch. As I noted, I haven’t had time to read the fiction but it looks like a good way to spend a rainy night.

The feature article of the magazine is “The Long, Long Road to Dune” (not to be confused with the Lucille Ball movie, “The Big, Big, Trailer”). A very interesting history on the failed “Dune” movie projects prefaces a preview of the upcoming Lynch release. The details of the project that was to be made by Alexandro Jodorowsky are intriguing and was to feature design work by artists, Moebius, HR Giger and Richard Corben and music by Henry Cow. The article also states that Douglas Trumbull and Dan O’Bannon were to be involved and that is how O’Bannon met Giger, which resulted in their now famous “Alien” collaboration.

A column called “Hexes and Hoaxes” discusses the existence or non-existence of H.P. Lovecraft’s Necronomicon. This is another column I haven’t had time to digest fully, but it looks I won’t be disappointed.

The issue is rounded out with Part Six of an “Outer Limits” episode guide and the tour de force, an actual teleplay from a Twilight Zone episode “Escape Clause” written by Rod Serling. No review of this classic mag would be complete without a few mentions of the adverts. A small ad for the NY Times Bestseller “Battlefield Earth” touts “Soon to be TWO motion pictures”. Well, it took them a bit longer than expected but I think we can all agree it was worth the wait! A full-page ad for Bic Razors with a young John McEnroe touts Bic Razors that cost 20 cents! The best ad however is the back cover of the magazine and features interactive computer games for your Apple II or Commodore 64 computer for sci-fi titles by Ray Bradbury, Arthur C. Clarke, Heinlein and others.

The most impressive thing I found was that the caliber of writing is excellent and the strong editorial content provides hours of enjoyment. I don’t believe any magazines today can boast that, as they are basically ad driven vehicles.

The Lost Works of Vin Blesi
Thanks to the encouragement of Nolan B. Canova and Patty G. Henderson I have started writing again after a long drought. After a recent move I found some old writings dating back to the late '70s and have published them on a website, http://www.strangeagents.com/vinblesiarchive.htm

"Couch Potato Confessions" is ©2004 by Vinnie B.  Couch Potato main graphic by Vin Blesi and Nolan Canova.  Webpage design and all graphics herein (except where otherwise noted) are creations of Nolan B. Canova.  All contents of Nolan's Pop Culture Review are ©2004 by Nolan B. Canova.