The End of the Beginning

OP-dEaD has always been an undead blog. Now, sadly, it’s dead. At this very moment, the coroner is working on the remains, skillfully slicing his scalpel through muscly verbs, fatty adjectives and stringy adverbs. With practiced care he lifts bloody nouns from dark openings and weighs them in his scale.

Still, for all his methodic dissection, we already know the cause of death—too little time and a shift in priorities.

But even as you read these words, the contents are being put back in their rightful places, for OP-dEaD wasn’t an organ donor. And every incision is neatly sewn shut. In other words, the blog won’t be deleted anytime soon, especially since some of the posts continue to generate decent amounts of traffic. Hopefully, there’s some useful stuff here for fans of the fantastic.

Thanks for reading!

“It is not the end.

It is not the beginning of the end.

It is the end of the beginning.”

– Sherman the Robot, Millenium (1989)


Words for a Missing Post, Part 1 … of 1

Due to overhanging work commitments, the third part of my Music from “The Elder” retrospective won’t be posted until Tuesday. A big sorry to anyone who might be waiting for the concluding installment!

In other news, it took less than two weeks for my guide to Gremlins in-jokes to become the most widely read OP-dEaD post since the blog’s inception. A big thank you to everyone who has checked it out so far, mostly by way of the link I posted at IMDb!

Gizmo was very pleased at the amount of blog hits his movie got.

Happy New Year!

What say we start things off with a real bang?

Gloom is Good

December, and as befits my blogging alter ego, I spend all my waking hours in darkness. It’s still night when I get up in the morning, I sit in an office with tinted windows all day, and the sun has dipped below the horizon when I take the subway home. It’s the perfect time of year for horror movies, despite the bright lights and festive decorations. At present, I only wish I had time to actually watch horror movies—or anything else, for that matter! Bare trees, cold rain, and long evenings create the perfect mood for spectral visitors, deranged axe murderers, and unspeakable fiends of every stripe. Oh well, Paranormal Activity is on the cards for Monday. Yay!

Remember when I blogged about Father Ted, right after Halloween? I didn’t include a clip back then, but here’s a link to an unusually reflective moment from an earlier episode. It’s the season one finale, and Father Jack (Frank Kelly) is seemingly dead from floor polish poisoning. Ted and Dougal (Dermot Morgan and Ardal O’Hanlon) stand to inherit a generous amount of money, but only if they carry out an unusual proviso in the older priest’s will. Since Jack was terrified of being buried alive, they have to spend the night with his casket. And in the hush of the small hours, while Dougal sleeps, a pensive Ted paraphrases the closing words of The Dead” by James Joyce

Cream of the Creeps?

Last week, “after an appropriately terrifying level of debate,” the good people at Total Sci-Fi Online listed their top 100 horror movies of all time. Every last entry gets its own pithy capsule review, which makes for very enjoyable reading. But of course, a ranking like this will inevitably lead to differences of opinion. The Others in lowly 89th place, while the overrated A Nightmare on Elm Street nestles in 17th? And what are Drag Me to Hell and Scream doing in the rarified company of Creature from the Black Lagoon and Re-Animator? That dog won’t hunt, monsieur! I don’t entirely agree with their top 10, either, which looks like this:

  • The Shining
  • Rosemary’s Baby
  • The Wicker Man
  • Bride of Frankenstein
  • Psycho
  • Alien
  • Night of the Living Dead
  • The Texas Chain Saw Massacre
  • Halloween
  • Jaws

The Shining as the very pinnacle of celluloid horror? If you read OP-dEaD over the Halloween weekend, you know my choice for first place! In addition, I’d bump The Wicker Man, Bride of Frankenstein, Psycho and Alien in favor of Dawn of the Dead, Frankenstein, Suspiria and The Innocents. But then again, my preferences seem to change from day to day—you probably know the feeling! Besides a spot of rearranging, I’d also have to include plenty of favorites that Total Sci-Fi Online omitted. Was there really no room for The Hitcher? Robert Harmon’s existentialist slasher would thumb its way onto my list with ease. And here, in no particular order, are ten more missing movies that I’d include in my top 100: 

  • The Changeling
  • Bram Stoker’s Dracula
  • The Phantom of the Opera (1943)
  • The Lost Boys
  • Frenzy
  • 28 Days Later
  • The Devil’s Backbone
  • Profondo Rosso
  • Shallow Grave
  • Dawn of the Dead (2004)

Note: A big “thank you” to Undead Milkman for alerting me to the list in the first place!

What’s in store for Halloween?

Halloween is almost upon us—the year’s holiday highlight for any horror buff worth his or her salt. Basically, if you don’t watch a horror movie (or three) on Halloween night, you might as well pack it in and start collecting porcelain unicorns or something. I don’t remember what I watched last year, to be honest, but I can assure you that it was bloody and/or creepy. It always is, because that’s the law. And as to what I’ll be watching this year, I haven’t decided yet. I do know, however, what I’ll be blogging about over OP-dEaD’s three-day “Halloween Special” weekend. Here are three tasty hints for you to chew on. You’ll probably notice a theme …

First …


Friday: An understandably obscure zombie flick.

And then …


Saturday: A rightfully lauded zombie classic.

And finally …


Sunday: A very funny zombie parody. (No, not THAT one!)

See you on Friday!

What?! Not a zombie?!

Hoo boy, did I get a surprise at my last checkup! Dr. Frankenstein, my close friend and personal physician, shrugged his shoulders and sheepishly admitted that he’d misdiagnosed me. I’m not a zombie after all, but a vampire! It’s an honest mistake, I suppose, what with both creatures belonging to the ranks of the undead. Still, my “life” is in upheaval. Here I’ve been stuffing my face with rich, creamy brains, when I should have been slurping delicious, tangy blood. Obviously, I’ve had to alter my bio; I’ve also changed my name. (By some freakish coincidence, this new name is also the alias I’ve been using on IMDb for a couple of years. Weird, huh?) Otherwise, it’s business as usual.

  • Legal Disclaimer

    OP-dEaD is a blog of random writings on horror movies. Much of the generated content is founded in opinion, and should not be regarded as authoritative in any way. The aim is simply to provide enthusiastic and generally positive comments on the horror genre, written from a layperson’s point of view. In cases were copyrighted materials are used, the intent is only to enhance the visual experience. The copyright holders retain all ownership of the materials, and any wish from the relevant, and proven, owner to have specific materials removed from OP-dEaD will be respected.