Posted in General

Jude’s Recap Fundraiser for Black Lives Matter

[Wing: I want to open this by saying upfront that Devil’s Elbow stands with Black Lives Matter around the world. If Black lives don’t matter, no lives matter, and Black lives have long been forfeit in a world built on systemic racism. Black lives matter. All Black lives.]

Hey everyone, Jude here. We have a lot of fun on Devil’s Elbow but now I’d like to chat with you all on something serious.

As most of you are probably aware, the world’s a pile of shit and things don’t look good on the horizon. We’ve been dealing with a global pandemic thanks to COVID-19 and now with the murders of George Floyd and Breonna Taylor [Wing: Among many, many, many others.], protests have begun all over the world against police brutality and systematic racism. On top of that, Yemen’s on the brink of destruction and the people of the Philippines are fighting against a fascist “anti-terror” bill. That’s not even mention what the indigenous communities of North America are dealing with due to both the pandemic and our fascist government. [Wing: As well as indigenous communities around the world.]

Many of us fear we won’t live to see 2021, and even if we do it’ll most likely be worse than right now.

To that end, for the post couple of months I’ve been trying to do what I can to help. Aside from donating my own money I’ve been offering fan fiction commissions and liveblog slots on my tumblr account to raise donations. I’ve mentioned this in a couple of my posts, but now I’m making an official announcement to the Devil’s Elbow audience at large.

To help with the state of the world, I am officially offering the option for you, our readers, to commission a recap of your choosing in exchange for a donation to help any of the organizations or programs providing relief and support to the state of the world. I’ve already received donations for two recaps, “Return to HorrorLand” and “Mayhem on Mackinac Island,” and will be offering this service for as long as necessary.

So if you’d like to see me recap your favorite or least favorite Goosebumps book, or maybe something rare from the Spinetinglers series or some equally obscure series, or maybe a standalone novel such as Zilpha Keatley Snyder’s The Egypt Game or Joseph Bruchac’s Skeleton Man, this is your chance to make it a reality and do some good in the process.

This link to my tumblr account will bring you to a list of every YA horror book I currently own with mentions of what books I’ve already recapped.

Below you’ll find the rules of donating and the rules of recapping.

(more…)

Posted in General

Jude’s Favorite Scary TV Episodes of the 90s – Presented by Scream-O-Vision

Before we begin, I would just like to announce that, for the first time in Point Horror’s history, this article has been brought to you by SCREAM-O-VISION.

A byproduct of Holland’s vast tulip industry, Scream-O-Vision heightens your reading pleasure by informing you when to scream. Example:

SCREAM
SCREAM

As some of you might’ve figured by now I enjoy making lists, and I’m especially fond of looking up Top 10 lists of favorite episodes or favorite characters. While I normally do this for Halloween Extravaganza, I figured global and national circumstances called for a change of pace.

We all know once in a while, TV shows and cartoons might do a scary episode (not counting Halloween specials). They might be a paranormal episode such as exploring the local haunted house, a camping episode where the characters get freaked out by an urban legend, a miscommunication episode where one character assumes the other’s a monster or serial killer, or one where the child characters get scared by a horror movie and assume the bad guy’s real.

Below I’ll be listing off and discussing the scary episodes of 90s TV shows I grew up watching as a kid and teenager. Specifically, these are episodes that either aired during the 90s or aired as part of TV shows that first began during the 90s. Halloween episodes I’ll save for a separate occasion. And this isn’t me saying what are and aren’t the definitively best scary episodes of all time, just ones I’m particularly fond of.

Now, I’ve realized I should try to do this as a regular thing because I’m gonna suddenly remember some episode I didn’t think to add or couldn’t find any images or screencaps. After this first one, let’s see how many more I can work on.

[JC: I’m about a decade older than Jude, so we experienced the 90s very differently. The majority of the animated series in this list weren’t on my radar during their original runs. Is that going to stop me from commenting? LOL NAH]

[Wing: I was a teenager for a solid chunk of the 90s.]

(more…)

Posted in General

Halloween Extravaganza: Jude’s NYCC 2019 Sketch Post

Another NYCC has passed us by, and this year makes it a decade since I began collecting artwork and commissions. I’ve been able to do yet another sketch post for all you saucy little ragamuffins, though this year I didn’t get any Goosebumps commissions. Shocking, I know. I did, however, get two (or three) of Wing’s favorite “Graveyard School” characters from two of my NYCC regulars.

Since this month will have the last Graveyard School recap, I was hoping to see Nola Thacker at the convention again. I initially thought Thacker was appearing at the con again, and hoped to ask her a few questions about Graveyard School to go alongside the final recap this month. Unfortunately, what I assumed was the website being glitchy turned out to be due to Thacker not speaking at any panels this year. I looked through every panel listing that was being held at the New York Public Library and her name didn’t appear in any of them. Nor was she mentioned in other panels. Frustrating and disappointing, but beyond my control.

The con weekend didn’t start off great for me. It was raining and miserable on Thursday, and just as I was getting off the subway at the Javits Center the strap on one of my bags broke. I’d packed too many comics and reference material so I couldn’t decide who I should visit first, and I got overwhelmed.

Friday and Sunday were much better, though. The weather was nicer, I found a new bag, and I was able to get some stuff out of the way for my job at the store while I did my con experience. I had a lot of fun getting to chat with Colleen Doran and Gail Simone. I kept going back to Gail’s table because I was constantly forgetting I had stuff to autograph. On Sunday I was finally able to give Gail these two comics I’d been wanting her to have for years.

(more…)

Posted in General

Halloween Extravaganza: Jude’s Horror Comics and Manga Recommendations

It’s time for another Halloween Extravaganza, and to start us off I’ll be discussing these hair-raising, bloodcurdling, tongue twisting tales of terror to get you in the mood for Halloweenus.

Here’s a list of some recommendations for different horror comics I’ve personally read and experienced. Keep in mind I’ll only be mentioning comics I haven’t yet reviewed and recapped on Point Horror. So comics like Scary Godmother and Mermaid Saga won’t be discussed.

This was initially going to be longer, but I was having difficulty focusing on adding more titles. I’m considering doing a follow-up post in December for the sake of holiday shopping options.

(more…)

Posted in General

Halloween Extravaganza: Jude’s Top Most Messed Up Monsters From Cartoons and TV

For this year’s Halloween Extravaganza, I decided to do another little list.

We all have those traumatic childhood memories when we were watching some cartoon or TV show and suddenly something in that specific episode scarred us for life. Even as adults when we recognize how poorly the animation is, how bad the voice acting is, or just how cheesy the whole thing comes across, that certain thing still scares the shit out of us.

For this Extravaganza, I’ll be talking about the monsters and creatures that used to scare me as a little kid.

And still do to this day.

I’m not talking about monsters that make us go “Oh wow they’re so fucked up that’s great!” I’m talking about monsters that make ME go “…dude what the fuck.”

(more…)

Posted in General

Halloween Extravaganza: Jude’s NYCC 2018 Sketch Collection

For the Halloween Extravaganza I’ve done another sketch collection post. I was having some trouble deciding what to get from what artist since I planned to do a post for here and for Legion of Super-Bloggers…

But then I decided I needed a break from DC Comics because of their latest “Epic crossover” and the week-long depressive episode it instigated.

I wish that was a joke.

So every sketch this year is horror themed.

Last year I only showed you guys the Goosebumps and YA horror related sketches I bought, but this time I’m sharing everything. Not just YA stuff, but movies, TV shows, video games, and non-DC horror comics.

I only did three out of four days at NYCC this year, and I’m probably going to regret how much money I spent. Right now I’ve got the post-con blues and I feel bad I didn’t spend as much time with my friends as I could have. I do, however, have a fun Point Horror-related experience to share with you all.

I got to met Nola Thacker! Or as you guys might know her, D.E. Athkins/Tom B. Stone. She was speaking at a panel on queer YA comics during the first day of the con. I was SO relieved to confirm she really was the author of the “Graveyard School” series because I couldn’t find anything to verify those websites. I gave her a print out of my Jordie Flanders commission (which she loved), I got her to sign my copy of “Boo Year’s Eve,” my Ginger commission by Levy (which she also loved), and my copy of “Thirteen.” She signed the Graveyard School stuff as Tom B. Stone but “Thirteen” as D.E. Athkins. She said she had a lot of fun writing “Blood Kiss.”

I told her I was reviewing “Graveyard School” for Point Horror and she thought it was genuinely sweet someone remembered those books. I told her about how much everyone was loving the reviews, but don’t worry Dade I didn’t mention anything about her “Nightmare Hall” books. When I said I loved the Christmas books, she asked if I picked up how she wasn’t fond of the holiday. This has led me to believe “The Fright Before Christmas” was supposed to be satire. Oh, and apparently “Goosebumps” killed the series when the publisher was bought by Scholastic since they didn’t want “Graveyard School” taking attention away from “Goosebumps” or something.

I was sure to tell her I genuinely believe, for as much a Goosebumps fan as I am, I think her books are better. Because unlike the Goosebumps kids, Park, Stacey, and the rest are legit more likable and interesting as protagonists. She seemed really touched by the compliment. I hope to see her again next year to show her more of my commissions.

[Wing: I am so envious of this meeting! It sounds like she was a delight to talk to, and I love that she was speaking about queer YA comics. We may have some issues with her Nightmare Hall books, but the Graveyard School books are always a delight. As much as I love Goosebumps, I’m sad that it killed Graveyard School, because I could have read a billion recaps of those books.]

Now on to the art!

(more…)

Posted in General

Halloween Extravaganza!: Wing’s Fave 5 NoSleep Stories

Wing’s Fave 5 NoSleep Stories

We’re back with Halloween Extravaganza 2018! I love horror stories and NoSleep has some great ones. Here are my fave 5 in no particular order, except that Down in the Library Basement is my #1.

Down in the Library Basement by u/sleepyhollow_101

Part 1, Part 2, Part 3

There’s something in the library basement and a fill-in librarian goes on an adventure.

Etch-E-Sketch by u/Midnight Writings

Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4, Part 5

Big sister struggles to bond with little brother until things with his daycare teacher go terribly wrong.

Life On an Outback Cattle Station by u/CreepyAus

Index and final part

Australia is creepy as shit.

I Work as a Wilderness Guide by u/goldvine_throwaway

I Work as a Wilderness Guide

Be careful who you trust to take you into the wilderness.

Search and Rescue by u/searchandrescuewoods

Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4, Part 5, Part 6, Part 7, Part 8

The woods are creepy as shit.

Posted in General

Happy 5th Anniversary!

2018 brings the fifth anniversary for Devil’s Elbow. I can’t believe we’ve been recapping here for so long, and that you keep coming along for this ridiculous, terrible, wonderful ride. We’re bringing all the regular series recaps you’ve come to love (or loathe; we certainly have a love-hate relationship with a lot of what we recap), as well as some fun surprises throughout the year.

Keep an eye on this space for a couple of contests with fun prizes, lots of celebratory posts, some special events revisiting old recaps, and a whole lot more.

Thanks for five years of cheesy YA horror fun. You guys are the best part of it by far.

Posted in General

Coming Soon: Nostalgic Bookshelf

In January 2018, Devil’s Elbow celebrates its 5th anniversary and Sweet Valley Online its 1st. We’ve had a blast recapping, podcasting, and connecting with all of you over the years. We’ve had readers tell us it’s like one big, opinionated book club, and that’s part of the joy for us too.

Devil’s Elbow and Sweet Valley Online will be holding their own celebrations in January, but we want to announce our next big venture: Nostalgic Bookshelf (www.nostalgicbookshelf.com). We’re expanding the recap empire, and boy do we have some fun things in store for you.

Both Devil’s Elbow and Sweet Valley Online will continue with their current schedules, but we’re adding additional content and new recappers. In January 2018, Nostalgic Bookshelf will launch. In addition to the ongoing content at Devil’s Elbow and Sweet Valley Online, we will be recapping and discussing the Baby-Sitters Club series by Ann M. Martin, the Making Out series by Katherine Applegate, the world of Enid Blyton, and the Game Box, which will include Choose Your Own Adventure books and games, tabletop games, and classic console and computer games.

There will be many more surprises to come, and more information as we get closer to our January launch.

We’ll introduce the new recappers with their first recaps, and we know you’re going to love them.

(If you have ever wanted to be a part of this nostalgic recapping, podcasting, and discussions, or if you have any comments or questions, email us at management@nostalgicbookshelf.com. We’re open to nostalgic media from at least 10 years ago or earlier.)

We’ve had a great time building this community with you, and we hope you’ll enjoy the additional content and new areas of nostalgia. Be sure to tell your friends!

Posted in General

Halloween Extravaganza: Atypical Halloween Films

I, for one, welcome our new overlord: the Great Pumpkin!

It’s October! It’s Fall! It’s the best season of the year!

Each year about this time, there’s always the general consensus list post of “Halloween” films – among them Halloween, Friday the 13th, the Universal Monsters movies, Hocus Pocus, The Nightmare Before Christmas, Halloweentown (and its three sequels, though that fourth film is purely awful) – and there are the staples that several generations have grown up on, i.e. It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown!, which is the one film that still airs on a major network every year (or twice in the same month, some years.)

I don’t want to write one of those lists.

So, instead, I decided to pick some of my favorite spooky and/or horror-themed films that always seem to put me in the mood for Fall and its haunted delights. Join me and check this list of atypical not-exactly-Halloween films you should check out for the Fall season! Spookiness, ahoy!

It meeeeeeeeee!

(more…)

Posted in General

Halloween Extravaganza: Favorite Horror and Creepy Podcasts

Welcome to October, my favorite month of the year! Marching band competitions are in full swing, the air here is crisp, the night sky bright with moon and stars, leaves change color and fall and crunch when you walk through them, horror movies are everywhere, and Halloween is coming. Here at Devil’s Elbow, we love horror and scary stories and Halloween (…obviously), and to celebrate, we have a month of bonus posts to go along with our regular recaps.

Sit back with a cup of hot apple cider(1) (liberally dosed with the alcohol of your choice; I recommend rum or vodka) and celebrate the season with us.

(more…)

Posted in General

Halloween Extravaganza: Jude’s NYCC 2017 Goosebumps and YA Horror Sketches

New York Comic Con is my second favorite time of the year, next to Christmas/my birthday. I spend all four days walking around adding more pieces to my already large collection of art commissions and sketches. This year I was only able to do three days, as I was called into work at the stadium on Sunday. That being said, I realized since I would be working and thus earning more money, I decided to splurge the next two days. And thankfully I was smart enough to set up a few pieces in advance of the show.

For the last couple of years I’ve been devoting NYCC towards a sort of horror theme and have been trying to add additions to my Goosebumps-related artwork, as well as other YA horror related art, and added these fine pieces to my collection.

(more…)

Posted in General

Halloween Extravaganza: How to Re-Halloween When You’ve Un-Halloweened Halloween (aka Donna’s list of Halloween feels)

I was born and raised in Connecticut. The only way I could get more New England is if I pahk the cah in Hahvahd Yahd. Which I don’t. I don’t paRk my caR anywhere near HaRvaRd YaRd because I always avoided driving in Massachusetts as much as possible. At least in the eastern portion of the state.

I’m used to four seasons even though I absolutely despised one of them and was allergic to another. Humidity always sucked but it was always a thing and I reveled in those days when the humidity dropped to like 50% and it didn’t feel like I was choking on my own lungs in the summer.

And then came September. One: The Big E. It’s the state fair to end all state fairs. Technically it’s a multi-state fair and you can eat your way through that states. And your pants. It’s glorious. Two: Autumn.

OMFG I love autumn. For about five weeks, from September through Halloween the weather is divine. Mid-70s to 60s during the day, 50s at night. Perfect for jeans and sweatshirts, drinking apple cider and eating apple everything and maybe a little bit of pumpkin (I’m not part of that cult). I put out Halloween decorations and carved the shit out of some pumpkins. I burned all the pumpkin spice Yankee Candles (I AM part of that cult) and I absolutely loved cuddling in on those crisp autumn nights and watching scary movies. It was all so perfect.

(more…)