Music Monday: Roger Waters’ Comfortably Numb Video Makes Me Wish He’d Pull a Taylor Swift

I wandered onto YouTube last night and amid the “new releases” there was a video of “Comfortably Numb” by Roger Waters. Liking both the artist and the song, I innocently hit play.

Mind blown.

Not because it was part of his live show, as other videos indicate. This seems effective for a concert performance and I would have loved to have experienced it.

Not because of the chilling apocalyptic visuals, though they are worth seeing, so go to YouTube and search “Roger Waters Comfortably Numb 2022” to enjoy more than these screen grabs.

What awes me is the music. We have known this song for 42 years, yet here it gets a rebirth. From the dramatic opening thunder to the sparse and spooky production (mostly keyboards, soft bass and drums, voice overs, Waters’ near whisper, an “oohing” chorus, and a female vocalist whose plaintive power and range replaces guitar leads), this recording is gripping and feels incredibly current.

This iteration of “Comfortably Numb” also inspires the irrational fan in me, one I thought I had long outgrown. The thought rose by mid-song, and only strengthened in the face of all logic with each repeat viewing.

“I want Roger Waters to release a version of The Wall done like this, right now!”

My allegedly mature side argued the impossibility of this request. But as I found myself inside the music, the fan in me ridiculously argued, “He can do it like Taylor Swift re-recorded her first albums!”

That is not going to happen (he only released it as a single and I’ve heard zero about any further plans, sadly), though, my inner fanboy voice screams, it is a great dream to have, and, based on this recording, the possibilities would be astounding. At least we can enjoy this amazing version. Wear headphones. The mix is so worth experiencing.

Give it a few plays, especially on Thanksgiving morning before the relatives arrive.

Posted in 2022, Music, pop culture, Roger Waters, Pink Floyd, Comfortably Numb, The Wall, classic rock, writing | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

WTF Wednesday: He’s Back, Uninvited

By Christopher Ryan

I agree with the often expressed notion that it shouldn’t be this hard to talk about things. But it is. Let’s talk anyway.

Somebody declared his intention to run for the office of the President of these United States last night despite his party basically saying, “No! No! Please! No!”

And despite two impeachments and a staggering number of state and federal investigations focusing on his alleged criminal offenses.

And despite the fact that, on Election Day, America rejected all of his top candidates.

None of that seemed to matter to him.

At least the Once And Future Candidate didn’t seem that thrilled. Gone was the swagger and sarcasm. Instead, he stood there, a bizarrely face-painted grouch in an ill-fitting suit, seeming to be baffled that he didn’t already have what he had pissed away because he couldn’t help himself.

Just being honest, folks. If this guy hadn’t been so extreme he probably would have been re-elected. But it just isn’t in him to care about anything but himself for deeply embedded reasons best examined in Confidence Man by Maggie Haberman.

To give grudging credit to The Grump Who Stole America, he did attempt to use his “I’m a serious world leader” voice for as long as he could.

It didn’t last.

The I’m-being-forced-to-behave chastened boy part of him gave way to his complainer-in-chief persona and the “third time’s the charm” announcement devolved into the tired schtick of an unfunny stand-up.

Incredibly, the suspected chief architect of the January 6th insurrection stood before America and said, “I’m a victim.”


This happened after an Election Day that, if we’re being honest, surprised Republicans, Democrats, journalists, pundits, and voters alike.

The Red Tsunami turned out to be a trickle, at least in part because Gen Z got out of bed in impressive numbers, lowered their phones, and voted. Nobody saw that coming.

Now that’s a response to WTF.

And it seems that non-radicalized Americans of both parties also deserve credit for coming out and voting to calm the country down.

Maybe a majority of us realize we want to move on from “Accusation America”. As the saying goes, we don’t have to agree on all things as long as we agree on one thing – that America is worth the debate.

That is another great answer to WTF.

Meanwhile, the 24-hour news outlets covered the Least Desired Political News of The Decade as they have for the last seven years. They analyzed it, discussed it, debated it, detested or celebrated it, doing whatever they thought would bring in ratings because they are a huge part of the problem.

Their justification seems to be that everyone else is “reporting” it, so they must as well. That thinking contributed to national madness, and deep in their hearts they know it. Spending no more than one minute an hour on The Mouth That Roared would suffice, unless advertising dollars and ratings mean more than the well-being of a nation.

Please understand, I love Journalism. But it has become a cancer second only to our uncaring government.

Having news everywhere all the time is like your Aunt Constance, who lives for gossip and picks at it and picks at it throughout Thanksgiving dinner until your cousins are brawling and Uncle Charlie mushes Aunt Beatrice in the face with the cranberry sauce.

None of us need this. There must be a better way.

And I’ll admit I don’t have concrete answers. Just dreams. But that’s the Idea of America, isn’t it? That anyone, from anywhere, of any color, ethnicity, religion, or gender, can come here, dream big, work hard, and contribute to this grand tapestry on their own terms.

That’s the Idea of America, anyway.

In that spirit, let’s dream. Let’s dream big. (Here’s where you get to say, “WTF?”)

Imagine a focused bipartisan effort to: -rebuild the economy for the long term -figure out how to handle immigrants without betraying professed American Ideals (if not reality) -create tax incentives to help make climate protection profitable for anyone willing to invest in the future, including older energy barons -create jobs in jobless area (looking at you, energy businesses) -and recreate a strong middle class that can help America forge a stable future.

Of course, we need to do this without bankrupting the rich, forgetting the poor, or exploiting people of color or alternate lifestyles.

Easy right?

Of course not, but nothing worth doing is ever easy, and I’m saying America is worth saving, WTFs and all. And the party that achieves these things owns the future, but we would be a much stronger nation if we could do it together.

The sooner we wave goodbye to clown cars full of distractors and detractors, give up on the politics of blame and shame, and embrace the American Ideal of hard work and cooperation, the sooner things will get just a tiny bit better. And then maybe a tiny bit better than that.

Hate and deficits and finger wagging and BS have had their day. We The People want something more. We want the American Dream.

Sounds good on paper, any way.

Christopher Ryan is such a believer in the Idea of America he wrote a horror novel about what might happen if we keep this country divided. He recently rewrote and expanded it. Check it out here:

Posted in #community, #election, #inspiration, #POTUS, #voting, #WeThePeople, America, healing, horror fiction, Oil, POC,, politics, racism, America, writing | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Music Mondays: Bright Harmonies Defeat Politics

By Christopher Ryan

We have an ongoing relationship with music. Sometimes old friends come back to visit. Other times, new sounds energize us wonderfully. This Monday series is about all of that.

Like most of the country, I was just sick of all the political divisiveness in this country, especially leading up to the recent elections. I found myself avoiding TV so I wouldn’t be berated by attack ads. Discussion among those with different opinions continued to grow disturbing.

To my pleasant surprise, relief came from an unexpected source- The Traveling Wilburys.

A not-so-secret supergroup gave us two uplifting albums, Vols. I and III.

In 1988 and 1990, undisputed, hit-making superstars George Harrison, Roy Orbison, Bob Dylan, Tom Petty, and Jeff Lynne released a pair of bright, fun, harmony-filled albums that featured numerous hits including “Handle With Care”, “Not Alone Any More”, “Tweeter and the Monkey Man”, and “End of the Line” as well as “She’s My Baby”, “Inside Out”, and “Wilbur Twist”.

But that was then. What do the Wilburys have to do with 2022?


Bob Dylan, Jeff Lynne, Tom Petty, George Harrison, and Roy Orbison.
The Traveling Wilburys.

And that is the joy of it. There are. no political overtones in this music, no fury, anxiety, or anger. No hate. The harmonies are gorgeous. The music and lyrics range from fun to uplifting, with a moment of breathtaking heartache from the late, legendary Roy Orbison. Taken together, the albums offer a great vacation from the headlines.

Sadly, we’ve since lost Orbison, Harrison, and Petty, and the Wilburys are relegated to history.

But they remain a quick search away in your favorite music streaming service, and they are so worth the visit.


The harmonies of The Traveling Wilburys are not to be missed.
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Satanic Panic Novel Feels Timely in Our Divisive Times

by Christopher Ryan

Clay McLeod Chapman is currently on what looks like a fun book tour for Ghost Eaters and more power to him. While that intriguing book is on the ever-growing TBR list, his 2021 novel Whisper Down the Lane leapt off the shelf this weekend. The experience was fast, fun, and rewarding.

Chapman’s horror novel about the 1980’s satanic panic features a dual timeline, weaving its tale in 1982/1983 and 2013, but the themes ring loudly and impressively true in 2022.

The overwhelming belief in what is demonstrably untrue by people who want and need it to be true devastates entire communities in 1983 and 2013 in the novel. Much to our national detriment, such insidiousness is even more prevalent in 2022. In all three eras, people suffer for succumbing to a variation on the evils of lying.

Chapman is a superb writer, a compelling storyteller, and a master of subtext. This novel never telegraphs, moralizes, or preachers. Instead, the author offers the story with such strength that the characters expertly run through the plot via action and dialogue while subtext and social commentary pulse just below, like a killer bass line and funky drum beat driving a hit song.

Having lived through the 1980’s satanic panic era when so many came to a judgment having already decided which conclusion should be reached no matter the facts, this novel intrigued. What was not expected was how powerfully the ruinous depictions of agenda-driven “investigations” and too easily accepted smears would resonate in today’s accusatory climate. The result is an impressive tale unencumbered by politics but offering powerful social food for thought.

The only thing better than a quick, satisfying read is one that also leaves the reader with something to reflect on long after closing the book. Chapman’s Whisper Down The Lane delivers all of that in captivating fashion.

Highly recommended.

Posted in #community, #reading, #WeThePeople, America, Book lovers, book recommendations, fiction, horror fiction, lying, pop culture, satanic panic, writing | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Bono and The Idea of America

by Christopher Ryan

U2’s Bono spoke at the 23rd annual New Yorker Festival last night. Well, first he riled up the crowd, and sang, and recited new poetry, and sang some more.

And then he ignited my soul.

Bono performing at the New Yorker Festival, Oct. 7.

During his performance he noted that in this country, we can take a DNA test and discover we are 40% Polish, 12% Korean, 23% Argentine, “but it will never describe you as American.” That, he suggested, is something we become ourselves.

The legendary Irish rock band’s front man and global activist then put forth the notion that “America is a song that is still writing itself.” He is correct. And the latest verses have grown dark, more yelling at each other than creating harmony utilizing our different voices.

Bono then discussed this country being built on “The Idea of America” murmuring, “Lucky you. Lucky us. Lucky me,” before kneeling to the audience and, I thought, that very precious concept.

Bono banters with crowd outside before the event held at The New York Society for Ethical Culture.

The Idea of America is the belief that anyone, from any country, any religion, any political leaning, any race, any gender identity, any sexual orientation, with any dream, can come here and they’ll get the chance to work hard to create the life they envision.

This promise is central to my love for this country. It is what sustains my faith in the possibilities and potential of this nation even amid all the divisiveness tearing at our collective soul these days.

It is so important to me that I wrote an entire novel in defense of both The Idea of America and reigniting the potential of this country. And then Jan. 6th happened, compelling me to rewrite it, expanding, editing, and improving it into the best it can possibly be. The Idea of America is at work on every page of what one reader described as “a love letter to America.”

The Idea of America is very much alive in this “love letter to America.”

A Simple Rebellion is the story of a widowed, depressed former comedy icon tricked into appearing remotely on a late night talk show. His response to the host is misunderstood, and triggers a shocking and increasing g number of Americans to passive protest, with explosive results. And somewhere in that tumult, the American Spirit is rekindled.

I love and believe in America, scars and all. To hear Bono’s belief in this nation of infinite potential energized me to share what I am doing to try to help this great experiment continue, to do what I can to protect The Idea of America and nurture the American Spirit. And, yes, I secretly dream that it might ignite a few souls like Bono ignited mine, again.

Thanks, Bono. I needed that.

Posted in #amwriting, #community, #reading, #U2, #WeThePeople, America, Bono, Book lovers, digital publishing, ebook publishing, Faith, fiction, horror fiction, Music, New Yorker Festival, politics, pop culture, self-publishing, Spirituality, writing | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Stephen King Offers Gold for All in Fairy Tale

by Christopher Ryan

Stephen King is 75 years old and at yet another thrilling peak of his writing powers with his new fantasy epic, Fairy Tale. This is, of course, reason to celebrate for his long-time “constant readers” as he refers to them. Fairy Tale can also be seen as wondrous entry point for a new generation about to discover King because the beautifully youth-friendly cover will draw them in like butterflies to a gorgeous flower. But this masterpiece may be most thrilling to older writers.

The book is a great read. The audiobook is equally delightful.

This grand tale of a 17-year-old boy, a dog, a recovering alcoholic dad, a cranky old neighbor, and a hole in the ground to another world rich in gold and adventure and horrible dangers is King’s 64th novel. That it may prove to be among his best is electrifying, especially to authors of a certain age.

Yes, he is a singular talent, America’s storyteller, but King has also always been an author of approachable style that inspires writers to write. He has consistently used a blue collar vocabulary to weave fantastic stories that reflect a range of human experience, from the darkest corners of our souls to the brightest center of our heart. This energizes other authors to keep working to their best talents, in my opinion.

King’s new work offers additional delights as well. In an age of shorter novels, Fairy Tale is among his longer works, yet a reader can fly through it in a few truly enjoyable days. The heroes within aren’t perfect and the villains have recognizable flaws that temper our disgust, making for a richer experience all around.

King has always played honestly with his constant readers, and does so here right from the title. This epic cleverly flips, inverts, and spins well-known fairy tales of old and new. He shades characters to echo stories we grew up on. Ultimately, he creates a fascinating subtextual commentary on what we learn from these stories while offering insightful takes on character, theme, genre, and meaning in delightful, painless ways that never slows the wonderful pacing.

A master at work is always a joy to behold.

Fiction lovers have many reasons to embrace Uncle Stevie, but Fairy Tale might just make him our favorite relative of all time,

Posted in #adventure, #amwriting, #community, #dogs, #inspiration, #reading, Book lovers, fantasy, fiction, horror fiction, pop culture, Stephen King, writing | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

We Came From an Island is Special

By Christopher Ryan

It came in a package so small it didn’t seem like a book had arrived. That added to the intrigue. Once opened, the 4.5” x 7” volume startled me. So petite, so slim. With a drawing of what turned out to be the Vejigante, a spirit creature, crying on the cover. Not what was expected at all.

Wait, “expected” is the wrong word. Assumed is more accurate, and serves this experience better. People make assumptions about books, authors, people, nationalities, cultures, and life, almost always to their mutual detriment.

We Came From an Island by Cynthia Pelayo smashes those assumptions, replacing them with an engaging mixture of Chicago grit and Boricuan mysticism. Her characters struggle under racism, conflicting national identities, rich cultural traditions, starkly hateful history, deep cultural sexism, misunderstood mental illness, and family secrets that define who they are, for better or worse.

All in 77 pages.

That’s powerful storytelling.

Better still, the three short stories included here work a magic together that is wondrously different from the spells they cast separately. “Boricua Obiturary” first appeared in PAQUE TU LO SEPAS! , a dynamic 2019 anthology, and “The Lament of the Vejigante” made its debut in the 2020 immigration -themed anthology Both Sides: Stories from the Border. But here, these works combine with the third tale, “The Puerto Rican Syndrome” to cast a cumulative magic and examine a deepening horror that goes from youthful innocence to adult awareness, and from ancient cultural mysticism to inherited trauma. The tales weave together the themes of stripped culture, fiercely protected spirituality, colonization, immigration, rage, sexism, racism, isolation, inclusion, identity confusion, mental illness, and the complexities of familial love to deliver a masterwork of modern horror that the stories cannot achieve apart.

To be clear, I thoroughly enjoyed the first two pieces when I read them separately. But experiencing them together in We Came From an Island allows for connections and reversals and evolution of stories not as easily apparent before.

The result is magical. And emotional. And wondrous.

Pelayo opens with a voice that is both as Chicagoan as the freezing cement sidewalks of that town and as rich as her island’s intriguing folklore. Clear observations of daily life and the supernatural elements enveloping it hook the reader. From the opening sentence, “If you went out at night you saw ghosts,” Pelayo sends us on a mesmerizing journey that weaves together the disparate threads of family tensions, spiritual belief, political reality, economic abuse, persistent racism, traditional sexism, emigration as escape, and immigration as isolation to create the Puerto Rican experience.

It is incredible.

This collection allows us to live the stories as a journey from long-standing family tensions to the horrors of casual racism to youthful encounters with supernatural beings, to cold, hard truths laid bare. We encounter ghosts as guiding memories, memories as haunting ghosts, and horrors that are progressively more real than supernatural.

Our experiences define us. Exterior forces, whether they batter or embrace, influence who we are. Navigating the many layers of life that create us necessitate facing horrors both ethereal and concrete, ranging from what is in our power to change to what threatens to overpower us if we cannot muster the personal strength to work through them.

Cynthia Pelayo demonstrates such strength, crafting an experience that continually evolves on all levels, beginning in frustrating reality, then becoming more spiritual so that both characters and readers are prepared when she plunges us back to riveting, heartbreaking everyday life.

We Come From an Island is one of those rare reading experiences that attaches itself to us, inspiring reflection, comparison, and, hopefully, a better understanding of how the myriad paths we travel intersect to make us who we are.

Bravo, Ms. Pelayo.

Posted in #amwriting, #community, #inspiration, #reading, fiction, horror fiction, independent publishing, pop culture, racism, America, Religion, Spirituality, writing | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Morbius and Moon Knight Demonstrate the Difference in Handling IPs

Sony’s Morbius is a bad film that gets worse the more it is discussed. Moon Knight is a promising show that improves with analysis. This illustrates the basic mistake film companies outside Marvel Studies continue to make when producing comic book intellectual properties (IPs).

Dr. Michael Morbius is having a bad day. So are audiences for his film.

Each of these characters can arguably be considered B level at best. From this vantage point, we can discuss how the respective companies seem to have developed their project. Yes, Marvel’s Moon Knight is a six-part television season rather that a feature film like Sony’s Morbius, but both function to establish the character’s origin and position him as an ongoing part of a larger fictional universe.

When Moon Knight shows up in the final minute of episode one, it is most definitely on.

Why each company produced works featuring a lesser known character is similar as well: they want to grow their already lucrative franchises. Neither surprise nor complaint there. Film studios are in business to make successful films. It is how they work toward that goal that seems to cause problems.

Marvel clearly proceeds from the position that great storytelling equals success. Sony repeatedly has provided evidence to suggest they believe boardroom decisions equal success and story is less important than spectacle.

We see a pattern of Sony cramming too many characters into their films, under-developing their scripts, and shoehorning scenes into films that are meant to force sequels rather than seed plot points that pay off satisfactorily in later films.

This ruined the Andrewverse, Venom, and now Morbius. Some may argue that it didn’t ruin Spider-Man: No Way Home, but that was developed with Marvel, with a script holds up beautifully under close scrutiny. Morbius collapses under casual post-viewing discussion; a study would annihilate it.

Moon Knight can also withstand the storytelling microscope. Is it perfect? Nah, no story is. But this project, like so many Marvel IPs, has been developed with the amount of care and respect needed to make a lasting tale that fans can play with intellectually and emotionally. That makes all the difference.

Does Marvel have an immaculate record of doing this? No. Avengers: Age of Ultron and The Eternals are examples of when they didn’t quite get there.

The former fell victim to the sort of corporate interference Sony and DC films seem hamstrung by, where commands from on high as well as boardroom goals of marketing and franchising seem to receive more time and attention than the actual stories.

The latter sought to introduce and develop too many characters at once, not allowing us time to become familiar with and decide to root for them (and it committed the cardinal sin of changing a character considerably without immense justification – the shortcut plot twist never works). The Eternals would have worked much better as a six-part (or longer) series on Disney+ rather than in theaters.

The most sadly intriguing difference between Morbius and Moon Knight is that the Disney+ show stands up better to scrutiny than the Sony film even though we have only seen one episode so far. That is damning not only to the Living Vampire’s potential but to Sony’s interest in telling the Marvel stories available to them. They seemed far more interested in spectacle and setting up their long-held goal of ramming a Sinister Six movie down our throats than in telling a compelling tale. And Morbius, with its classic monster myth structure, could have been so much more than it is.

The regrettable result is I, at least, will remain reluctant to plunk down cash to see any future Marvel story told by Sony. And I would much prefer to applaud their good story well told.

Sony, please pay more attention to the main rule for storytellers: SERVE THE STORY. As Marvel continually shows us, once you get the story right, everything else (marketing, franchising, toy sales, box office success) can happen.

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Sunday Chill: We All Need That Soft Groove Sometimes

Been a long, challenging week. Got my geezer badge, irreversibly sliding into the fourth quarter. Buried a mother who was at best equal parts battle and blessing. And I did all that with my Irish siblings whom I love, but we are always a tension fest around each other (they will argue with me over that, too). So I needed a never-fail album to chill out with today.

This was not a job for Ozzy, beloved energy god that he is. Allmans weren’t gonna do it today, though they usually come through. Peter Gabriel? Talking Heads? Dua Lipa? James McMurtry? BB? The Dan?

My soul was still too exhausted for these favs. I needed a sonic couch to lounge in. A silk-sheeted king-sized bed to sleep in on.

I needed Kacey Musgraves.

She is perfect for a Sunday chill. Softly welcoming. Musically comfortable. Intelligent, clever lyrics sung from the back seat without needing to shout. And that voice. Part yearning, part warm hug, with the ease of afterglow pillow talk, it can shoo away just about anything.

She’s got Golden Hour if you’re in love and Star-Crossed if that love has crashed. Both soothe, each in their own way. They hang out, never making demands that you sing along, dance, or grab a guitar yourself. What a relief.

So if you are looking for way to reset for the upcoming week and none of your go-to records are working, Kacey might have what you are looking for. She is sure as hell helping me watch the embers of last week finally fade away.

Thanks, Kacey.

What music helps you do the Sunday chill? Share your go-to music in the comments below.

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FRIDAY FUN: Is Moonknight the MCU’s First Horror Character?

When I was a kid, I delivered newspapers in the morning and put the Sunday papers together at Tony’s candy store. From the money I made, I put $5 aside every week for comic books. At the time, the cost 20 cents each, so I was reading 25 comics every week. That allowed me to read almost anything that came out. It also taught me vocabulary, pacing, foreshadowing, character development, and a love for mixing genres, as comics mixed adventure with romance with sci-fi with local coming of age with horror with mystery with suspense with supernatural, often in the same issue!

That was then, this is now. Comics are approaching $5 each and most kids get their stories online or on TV. They see the heroes I read about in big budget films and TV shows, for better or worse.

Disney+ and Marvel Studios have delivered, to varying degrees, on most of the story telling techniques and genres mentioned above, but are not known as horror houses. Or maybe they are and always have been. Let’s see.

How about horrifying heartbreak? Have either company ever killed parents in service of story? Ask Bambi, Thor, Iron Man, Dumbo, Simba, Cap, Wanda and Pietro, Cinderella, and Hawkeye.

Have they supplied suspense? Have dealt with accident tropes, as well as strangers, lies, missing people, escapes, fear inspiring revenge, sleep, and spooky treatment. Both story factories are actually experts with forest fires, pirates, ticking clocks, sleeping potions, figuring out how to handle big sisters from Hel, stampedes, mischievous half-brothers, power mongers, purple aliens, and terrorists.

Are there any creepy, powerful antagonists? Malificient. Cruella. The circus owners. Nasty step-mothers. Arrogant, jealous uncles. Corporate greed. Nazis. A god of mischief . Genocidal robots. And again, that purple alien.

Do they offer story elements that frighten both characters and audiences? See above.

So yeah, Disney+ and Marvel aren’t strangers to these story elements. So why does Moonknight feel like their first foray into true horror?

Oscar Isaacs plays multiple roles extremely well in Moonknight.

Maybe because it is really good at telling the tale offered. I suspect the keys here are the fast-paced, excellently executed combination of genre elements presented and the storytelling risks they are taking.

First, they put Oscar Issac in the lead roles. He doesn’t know how to give a less than arresting performance. And that wasn’t a typo; Isaacs plays at least four characters. Well, he plays one character with a minimum of four personalities – Steven Grant, Marc Spector, Moonknight, and Mr. Knight – as he suffers from dissociative identity disorder. And the identities are battling for dominance, often to save their shared lives. Bringing the audience in close on Steven Grant’s struggle with DID and establishing immediately that he does not understand what is happening to him, put the audience in the harrowing position of going along for his nearly insane ride.

The choice to launch this series in the midst of Steven’s struggles adds to the psychological horror feel as we are dropped into the middle of his suffering through a life in shambles. He fights to stay awake, ties himself to the bed, uses locks, chains, sand circles, and painter’s tape to confirm he hasn’t wandered in his sleep. When all of that fails, he wakes up in a variety of dangerous situations and cannot fathom how any of it has come to pass. He misses time, dates, and a weekend (egads!). And, oh yes, is being chased by ancient Egyptian gods and their servants, and an apparent cult leader. So, yeah, suspense and fear abounds.

And there be monsters. Initially, just an assortment of people who treat Steven horribly, then the more powerful and otherworldly kind. (SPOILER!) and it is only when he is cornered by jackals serving as ancient Egyptian hellhounds that he gets any answers. And those would truly freak out even the bravest among us.

Finally, his reality breaks. Or is it his allusion cracks letting a far scarier reality in? Either way, we are clearly in horror town by this point, right in time for the titular hero to make his dramatic entrance, and he’s scarier than anything we’ve seen thus far.

These are my arguments supporting the idea that Marvel has injected true horror into their universe. Yes, Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. introduced us to Ghost Rider, but at the time that show “wasn’t canon.” (It is now.) And with Moonknight making his scary ass debut, fun’s being offered up with the exciting genre quality that has become Marvel’s signature style.

If you are looking to sit back with some popcorn and a cool beverage to get your entertainment on, click on over to Disney+, select Marvel, and bask in the Moonknight of it all. This is great comic bookie horror fun.

Posted in # thrillers, #adventure, #MCU, comics, fiction, film, horror fiction, Marvel, Marvel Cinematic Universe, pop culture, super-heroes, writing | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment