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Doors Closing and Doors Opening: Part One
 by William Moriaty

"The 40 Year-Old Virgin"
 by Mike Smith

Is Horror at a Turning Point?....Happy 50th
 by Andy Lalino

Changing Tastes Puts Column on Hiatus
 by Peter Card

Birthday Bash....King Kong DVD Update....Go Bucs
 by Matt Drinnenberg

Birthday Revisited....Get Me Clive Owen....Gas Pains....Jaws: The Story, Part 30
 by Mike Smith

Nolan's Pop Culture Review, 2005!
    Established A.D. 2000, March 19. Now in our sixth calendar year!
Number 282  (Vol. 6, No. 33). This edition is for the week of August 15--21, 2005.

The Weekend That Was

The Weekend That Was wasn't the weekend that coulda been or shoulda been, but it was the weekend that saw me through my landmark half-century mark regardless, and a good time was generally had by all who were able to attend. I'd say we had about a better than 90% turn-out of those invited and genuinely expected to show. I got very, very inebriated from the donated drinks and remember being very happy. Of course there were a few disappointments, but there were a couple surprises as well.

August 13th, to recap...
This was originally going to be the first day of the two-day NolanCon 2005, an event I'd dreamed up and planned to realize for years. Its scheduling was deliberately set on my birthday which, conveniently enough, was on a Saturday this year. However, through a series of mishaps, misunderstandings, misfires and miscalculations, all documented in earlier issues of PCR (and which will not be recapped here), NolanCon 2005 was forced to be cancelled. After barely recovering from that devastatingly depressing development, in its place a birthday party was planned with libations at the site of where the convention would've been: The Best Western Hotel on Westshore in Tampa, and specifically for this new purpose, The Durango Bar & Lounge located within. 7:00pm was the starting time.

But first...
I knew there would be no "cake-and-candles" as such at the bar, and I did want to observe that little ritual somehow, so my brother set up a lunchtime arrangement at his house for a few of us to conglomerate, especially if one couldn't make the Durango shindig. Besides my brother, Ron, this turned out to include only Count Poffula, Lauré (past PCR contributors and extremely close friends whose pseudonyms have always been requested for privacy) and myself. After lunch and cake, we watched about half of a Chriss Angel magic special on A&E (pretty good if a little too goth and Blaine-esque for my taste). Dropped back off at home afterwards, I had just enough time to take a short nap before preparing for the night's festivites.

CLICK ON IMAGES TO ENLARGE. Pictures will open in a new browser window. Close that window to return here.
My brother Ron on the right, and I, from the only digital picture saved from the lunchtime party at his house. An outstanding portrait, I think.
The first 35mm photo taken from the Durango shindig by Ivan Ilaraaza. That's Creature Feature archivist Lonnie Dohlen sitting in the foreground next to Will Moriaty (white suit). In the background Chris Woods (left) talks to my brother Ron. The red streaks are camera errors.
In an inexplicable turn of events, my digital camera started to rebel and I got pictures like this half the night. I'm including it for illustration. This is an extremely distorted view of Terence Nuzum (left) and Tina Butler (center, wearing Mighty Mouse T-shirt).
Thank goodness for Ivan Ilaraaza and his 35mm camera! Here we get a more realistic view from the entrance to the bar. Left-to-right, Tina Butler (head's turned, darn it), Terence Nuzum, Ricky Sousa, Drew Reiber, Chris Woods, Ron Canova, Neil McCurry (back of his head, foreground), and a piece of Lonnie Dohlen trailing off the right side.
There's Tina! Terence and Tina laugh with Drew Reiber while everyone else's heads are turned this time.
Finally got a front view of Neil McCurry, even if it is a little blurred. We are several margaritas into the night by now. Will Moriaty's across from us, partially obscured.
While it looks like everyone has their back to the camera here, I'm including it because it's the only picture taken with Brandon Jones (extreme right, highlighted). Chris Woods' girl Barbara peers over Chris's head, left foreground.
CLICK ON IMAGES TO ENLARGE. Pictures will open in a new browser window. Close that window to return here.
I swing around to try and get a group portrait that includes the lovely Barbara, Chris Woods' significant other we've all just met. Unfortunately, Ricky Sousa's head obscures Chris's just a bit! Woops! Thanks anyway, Ivan, good picture of me and Barbara anyway!
We have a little better luck with this group portrait. Left to right (standing): Ricky Sousa and yours truly. Left to right (sitting): Chris Woods, Barbara (I'm sorry I forgot her last name), Ron Canova.
All the way from Wroclaw, Poland, Legion Studios co-founder (and valued message board commentator) Christian Dumais honors me with a visit. Other Legionnaires are here, too.
Left to right: Ricky Sousa, Gus Perez (oh, there's Gus!), Legion Studios co-founder Scott Pero, Joe Davison's wife Jori (sp?), filmmaker Joe Davison, Barbara.
Some late-arriving Creatures round out the night. Left to right: Wanda Vaters, unidentified friend of either John's or Christian's, John Lewis (sitting, ball cap), Chris Woods and Barbara (backs to camera), Sheryl Cerrato (background, near entrance), "Mad Matt" Cerrato (just barely make him out next to Sheryl), Joe Davison (drinking).
Legion Studios meets Crazed Fanboy! L-to-R, Former Legion honchos Christian Dumais and Joe Davison stand with Crazed Fanboys Nolan Canova and William Moriaty.
Sheryl Cerrato staged this ass grab by Joe Davison and thought it was hysterical. I have to include it or else I'll never hear the end of it.
We arrive....

A special note regarding the photographs: My main digital camera, a 1999 Hewlett-Packard that has supplied 99% of all photos used on this website since the beginning, picked Saturday night to start failing. Of my camera's shots, I was only able to recover the very first picture (with my brother) and the last 5 (starting with Chris Dumais). All other photos are courtesy of party attendee Ivan Ilaraaza who I imposed on for this purpose and to whom I'm eternally grateful. Further aggravating the matter, my scanner started failing this week as well, so some areas of Ivan's pictures may have some streaking---that is my scanner's fault and not his film. I did the best I could to clean them up in the available time. While Ivan himself doesn't appear in any of these pictures, he can be found in PCR #273. Thanks again, Ivan! ---Nolan

William Moriaty and I originally planned to eat at the Durango restaurant first, but the late lunch and cake was still settling, so I was sluggish getting out the door. This was very unthoughtful of me as William was pretty hungry and we got a late start on my account. William would wind up postponing dinner until later. We arrived at The Best Western just 5 minutes to 7:00pm.

First guests...
First to greet us was Creature Feature Database researcher and archivist Lonnie Dohlen, the only one in the lobby and, at first glance at least, the only one to have appeared to be on time! William thought maybe people were getting lost and decided to go out into the parking lot to guide visitors(!). I didn't think this was necessary, but later turned out to be a useful idea. I showed Lonnie around the halls and lobby of the hotel and pointed out the rooms NolanCon would've been held in. As it would turn out, Lonnie was the only one to get this tour as people were now filtering in at an accelerating rate. Next to arrive were Mr. and Mrs. Ivan Ilaraaza, Florida actor and an extremely nice man who starred in Gus Perez's Light of Blood. I'm not sure which happened next, but two things happened nearly simultaneously. I discovered that Drew Reiber had been in the Durango restaurant the whole time eating dinner with Terence Nuzum's family (Terence himself would not arrive till later, but I greeted and welcomed them all to the hotel) and Florida actor Gus Perez (Light of Blood, The Raging Bells) arrived with Ricky Sousa, past president of our beloved, ancient sci-fi club from the '70s, The Andromeda Society. Ricky had brought with him his own six-pack of beer(!!), specifically St. Paulie Girl. He offered me a bottle, but I had to remind him that it was illegal to bring open bottles into the hotel. He was amused at my concern, but unphazed, and continued drinking unabated. He presented me with my first gift: a "Hoberman Sphere", a bit of angled sticks looking at first glance like a plastic sea urchin, that, when tugged on would expand and form into a sphere. I used this gadget as an ice-breaker the rest of the night.

Drew Reiber had already joined us, but Terence's family was still dining. It was about this time William came back inside and we decided to move our meet-and-greet from the hotel lobby to the Durango Bar & Lounge.

The Durango Bar & Lounge
Our initial group sat down and spread out across a booth and a couple tables. I started drinking what would wind up being double-digit counts of margaritas (two-for-one night, what a coincidence), so please forgive if the rest of this story doesn't follow a strict chronological order, because frankly, I don't remember the order.

My brother Ron Canova was among the next to arrive and he was most generous with the alcoholic contributions (thanks, Ron!). Filmmaker Chris Woods came in soon after with his new girlfriend Barbara (there's a great story to that--some other time), whom we all met for the first time. The Sarasota Film Festival's Neil McCurry came in right around then and presented me with a Possessed T-shirt (from his movie of the same name).

Second wave. About a half-hour or so later, Brandon Jones (Splash Page) arrived. I'm very happy Brandon was able to make it, his life's been upside down for months, but hopefully he can return to PCR soon.

The lord of darkness himself Terence Nuzum then bounded in with his girlfriend Tina Butler. This was a pretty big "unveiling" as Terence and Tina had been dating for months, but until this night, almost no one had met her. She was great, though, and we enjoyed her company. Terence's family soon came strolling in from the Durango restaurant. This includes Patty G. Henderson and Art Brown (past and present editors of Flash Fantastic), Jeanie and William Brown, Terence's mother Yolanda (who, with me under the influence, I embarrassingly failed to recognize at first I so rarely see her), and family friend and graphic artist Michele Corby. They pulled up chairs and we formed a fairly tight circle around my booth.

(Slight digression: it's funny, large groups seem to splinter off into smaller groups or factions, but in the case of Saturday night, there were only two groups really: the "Nolan" group, and the "Gus" group. I think the only ones common to both over the span of the night was Neil McCurry and William Moriaty. The "Legion" group had yet to arrive, but they could count as a third.)

It was a delight for us to all get to know each other. I remember Drew and I would alternate talking to Terence and Tina and then resume an earlier conversation with Neil McCurry or whoever. I just realized about that time that Ivan Ilerraza and his wife had left, William had moved to the "Gus" group with Chris, Barbara, Ricky, and my brother, and Neil was in William's original place at my booth.

Wherever they were, Neil and Ron were very conscientious about keeping the booze coming to me, and for that, I'm grateful to both of them.

Patty, Art and the Nuzum company (except for Terence) prepared to depart about this time. Before they left, I made one short speech to the crowd regarding Flash Fantastic. I'm glad I did because the smattering of applause confirmed no one had connected them to the publication until then (or was able to express appreciation for it until then, one of the two). William presented Patty with an autographed copy of his book William Moriaty's Florida (Lonnie had been reading it intensely up to that point), and with that, they were gone.

The third "wave" came in about then: Mike "Deadguy" Scott (Deadguy's Dementia) and Eric Avant (Mike's best friend, actor in my first movie, and musician with "Yeti"). They got a separate table and were slow to join the main group but eventually did mingle a little. Mike and I pledged to go see "Bodies, The Exhibition" at MOSI providing the state doesn't shut it down first, of course. Two of John Lewis's friends arrived about then, Doug and Wanda Vaters, a couple connected to both Creature Productions and the Tampa Giant Comic Con. Strangely, they seemed to be there primarily to tell me John and Ashley were on their way and keep me posted on their progress. Extremely tipsy by this time, I failed to even make their introductions, I'm really sorry about that. "Mad Matt" and Sheryl Cerrato came in when I'd almost given up on them---turns out work-related issues kept him late, but they made it anyway, and that's what counts.

The fourth and final "wave" came within the last thirty minutes the bar was open (closing time turned out to be 11:00pm, WAY earlier than I'd expected). Two-thirds of the former Legion Studios triumvirate, the now Poland-based Christian A. Dumais (whose name message board patrons will recognize) and Scott Pero (whose head is now shaved like Christian's---yes, I told him it was a mistake). Derrek Carriveau, the third Legion founder, had already returned to Poland so, unfortunately, was not in attendance. But filmmaker Joe Davison (Unearthed) was, just back from England, and managed to offend everyone at the party with just the few minutes he was there. God bless 'im, I can always count on that, haha. They presented me with an 8 X 10 framed enlargement of three of us, Joe, Christian and myself, at the Third Renegade Saints & Sinners Film Fest (May of 2003) that originally appeared in that issue of PCR.

Well over an hour after they were supposed to be there in "ten minutes", John and Ashley Lewis arrived, dead last, about ten minutes to 11:00pm. Ivan, Lonnie, and most of the Nuzum camp were long gone, and Terence and Tina were nearly out the door themselves. Hasty intros were made with some explanations by the Lewises of movie shooting delays and car trouble. A shame, they missed almost everything Durango-related. However, the night, as it turned out, wasn't over just yet...

The "Legion" crowd was just getting warmed up and made a suggestion we move to The Dollhouse (titty bar) nearby, but the Cerratos and the Lewises were urging me to dry out at The Egg Platter (diner in South Tampa). Chris Woods and Barbara bade us farewell for the night as did Terence, Tina, and Drew. The rest of us decided to go to The Egg Platter. I know Christian, Joe and Scott must've been pretty disappointed at our short meeting, I know I was, but I'm sure they raised hell at the Dollhouse plenty fine. Thanks for coming, guys.

The Egg Platter
"I...I....I....have become.....comfortably numb." My butchered rendition of Pink Floyd's classic is about all I can remember contributing to The Egg Platter get-together, although I'm sure I mumbled other stuff, too. We pushed two tables together and I remember Will, Matt, and John trading UFO/cryptozoological stories. I remember the waitress bringing me an ice cream cake and starting the crowd singing "Happy Birthday" (you know that thing restaurants do). Turns out the Cerratos were behind that one. Ha, ha, good one, ya got me. Good cake, too!

William poured me out of the car at home at roughly 2:00am and I zonked out.

Florida actor Joel D. Wynkoop and the soon-to-be-Mrs.-Wynkoop, Cathy Holseybrook, joined William and myself at Hooters Sunday night. Besides their always excellent company, Joel arranged for me to get sacked a second time this weekend by that infamous waitress sing-a-long Happy Birthday thing (you know that thing Hooters does---cross between a military and a cheerleader chant with hands clapping in time). Got me again, you nutty people! Seriously, thanks, Joel & Cathy, for being a part of it.

If there are names or incidents you don't see in the above article and wonder what happened to them, well, first consider I forgot some things since Saturday, and for this I apologize beforehand---this page will likely undergo several revisions before Friday. Alternately, there were several people expected who did not show up, but most if not all have emailed me and I won't publicly embarrass them by exposing their lame excuses to the world (snark, snark). Too bad, I wish you coulda been there.

Post-publication update: According to the more sober memories of Terence Nuzum, my only major gaffe in recollecting the chronological series of events listed above was that Brandon Jones did not appear before the Nuzum family entered the bar, but much later, around the time Deadguy and Eric came in. Sorry about that. Now that he's pointed that out it does seem more correct. Thanks, Ter! ---Nolan

This Week's Apologies...
I should've known better than to think I could get in the Romeo Coffeehouse Film Series Reviews For August in the same week as the birthday extravaganza to say nothing of what I'd planned to say about the Fall TV Schedule. On top of that, my odious "day job" sacked me with working two extra shifts I hadn't expected or planned on and the result is I am flat out of time for this week. I will still put up Ivan's pictures from the party over the weekend as soon as I can get them from the PO BOX (which I still haven't been able to visit as of this writing).

Please know that I will include the Romeo Coffeehouse Film Review for August in next week's PCR (#283) as well as the commentary I had planned for some Fall TV shows.

I apologize to everyone for any inconvenience this caused.

Please consider making a donation to help support Crazed Fanboy! Click on the "donate" link below and give whatever you can. I sincerely thank you for any and all consideration.---Nolan
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"Mike's Rant" is ©2005 by Michael A. Smith    "Matt's Rail" is ©2005 by Matthew Drinnenberg     "La Floridiana" is ©2005 by William Moriaty     "This Week's Movie Review" is ©2005 by Michael A. Smith    "Asian Film Update" is ©2005 by Peter Card    "Chiller Cinema" is ©2005 by Drew Reiber    "Creature's Corner" is ©2005 by John Lewis    "Couch Potato Confessions" is ©2005 by Vinnie Blesi    "Oddservations" is ©2005 by Andy Lalino      All contents of Nolan's Pop Culture Review are ©2005 by Nolan B. Canova    
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