Well, I hope all my readers in the path of Sandy made it through with as little damage and power loss as possible. I’m writing this post on Monday, just in case I’m not so lucky. Thank you, WordPress, for your awesome scheduling feature! [ETA: We came through Sandy with few hitches. Lost power for a few hours and one of our trees came down.]
Before getting into the meat of things, I want to announce the winner of the Mr. Blank giveaway. As you may recall, I asked folks to comment with their guesses about which two monsters were “better known” than the chupacabra. A fellow named Roy thought that aliens and Bigfoot were the two. Since I’m using the Fortean Times article that Justin Robinson linked to in his guest post as my source, I have to report that Roy was only half right, with the answer being Bigfoot and the Loch Ness Monster. That said, I thought Roy brought up a good point, questioning the concept of “fictional” and “real.” If, as he said, monsters like Godzilla and Frankenstein ” are dismissed as ‘fictional monsters’ then does that mean Nessie is real?”
So, what is real? The Loch Ness Monster? Frankenstein? The “vulture eye” of an old man? What can our belief in “reality” make us do?
Let’s find out, shall we? In honor of the holiday, let’s watch some horror, as written by Edgar Allan Poe and performed by my favorite master of the genre, Vincent Price. Vinnie recorded this piece as part of the film, An Evening with Edgar Allan Poe, in 1970. The film includes four pieces that Price performed for a live audience: “The Sphinx”, “The Cask of Amontillado,” “The Pit and the Pendulum,” and the one I want to share with you, “The Tell-Tale Heart.”
I think this is one of Price’s best works (he leaves his knowing looks and campy demeanor at the stage door), exploring the madness of a murderer who insists that he’s completely sane, albeit a little “nervous.” The piece makes me laugh, but it’s also quite chilling (and is one of my favorite tales by Poe). I hope you’ll enjoy it as much as I do. I’d love to know your thoughts.