Author: Craig Zablo

RIP: Tom Snyder

Tom Snyder, best known for his late night talk show, Tomorrow (which aired at 1am after The Tonight Show with Johnny Carson), died yesterday at the age of 71.

Younger ZONErs may not know of Tom Snyder, but I fondly remember staying up late to catch his show during the summer when I was in junior high and high school. At the time, Snyder seemed like no other talk show host on television. His sets were minimal, but his guests and topics more than made up for the lack of showbiz glitz. He was cool, but not hip. Most of all, Snyder seemed like a real guy, not a tv show host. I enjoyed the hours I spent watching his programs and the memories that remain.

My thoughts and prayers go out to his family, friends and fans.

30 Days Just Got Scarier

And speaking of Steve Niles [as we just were], he must be absolutely loving how the movie adaptation of his classic “30 Days of Night” graphic novel is coming along. Over at the “30 Days of Night” movie website, they’ve just added an “R” rated trailer and additional scenes from the movie. This is NOT appropriate for all ages, but those who are of age and enjoy this type of movie are going to dig it.

A Real Prison Thriller

We have over 2 million people locked up in US prisons. Conditions are usually tough. Gangs, violence and drugs are rampant. Everyone cries out for a solution and yet no one really knows what should be done… until now.

It seems that a prison in the Philippines has a program that all inmates enjoy and participate in. I give you the 1,500+ inmates of the Cebu Provincial Detention and Rehabilitation Center, Cebu, Philippines in their version of Michael Jackson’s Thriller.

Anyone Going to Stumptown?

Greg Rucka, one of my favorite novelists, has announced that he’ll be writing a new detective series called Stumptown that takes place in the same world as his novels!Although Rucka has been writing award-winning [Whiteout — soon to be a major motion picture] and fan favorite comics [Queen & Country, Gotham Central, etc] for some time, it is his five Atticus Kodiac novels [Finder, Keeper, Smoker, Shooting at Midnight, and Critical Space] that put him on my “must buy” list.

Rucka has a new Atticus Kodiac novel, Patriot Acts, coming out next month.  It’s already on my pre-order list!

The Big Heat

Over at Film Noir of the Week, author Eddie Muller provides an excellent write-up of the 1953 cult classic “The Big Heat”.Fritz Lang directed stars Glenn Ford and Lee Marvin in screenplay by Sydney Bohem. Lang, Ford, Marvin and Bohem all brought their A-games to this project. Although some don’t consider “The Big Heat” a true noir film, no one can deny it’s a classic hard-boiled crime drama that deserves a spot in any movie lover’s library!

The Big Heat rates an A

Depp Steps into Dark Shadows

When I was a kid, I loved “Dark Shadows”. For a time it was one of my favorite shows. Barnabas Collins was the man!

Johnny Depp has just signed to play tv’s coolest vampire in a movie version of “Dark Shadows”. Depp is an excellent choice and here’s to hoping that the big-screen versions of Barnabus and “Dark Shadows” live up to the legacy started on the tube.

Frazetta’s Universe posted a report today that Image comics will be expanding their take on “Frank Frazetta’s Death Dealer” into several series based on other Frazetta paintings. As I read the piece, I started thinking, this could be very cool if done correctly. Then I read…

“The Silver Warrior” is a four-issue mini-series by Fotos, Nat Jones and Joshua Ortega. One-shots include Rick Remender on Frazetta’s “Creatures,” “Swamp Demon” written by Joshua Ortega, Steve Niles handling “Dracula Meets The Wolfman,” and Mark Kidwell doing the same for “Dark Kingdom.”
Rick Remender, Steve Niles and Nat Jones and everything is run by Frank Frazetta for his approval. Yeah, they’re doing it right.

No One is Safe

Nearly four years ago issue #1 of The Walking Dead hit the stands. I bought it and really dug both the art and story. I soon discovered that I wasn’t alone. A lot of people were buying and loving it!

Before long The Walking Dead was my favorite comic. After the first six issues, artist Tony Moore left the regular art chores and Charlie Adlard took up the slack. The book remained my favorite regularly published comic.

Each month The Walking Dead was the comic that I most looked forward to reading. From time to time, I’d talk up the series so that ZONErs who’d never heard of it would have a chance to jump on board. Robert [creator of The Walking Dead] Kirkman’s interview at reminded me that I hadn’t crowed about The Walking Dead in a while.

So I decided to remedy that with this post.

The Walking Dead Book 1 [Collects the first 12 issues in an affordable hardcover] A+ rating

The Walking Dead Book 2 [Collects the second 12 issues in an affordable hardcover] A+ rating

Put ‘Em Up Times Six

Today I thought we could take a look at Six of the All-Time Best Movie Fights. First, some parameters… let’s limit the fights to people [no King Kong vs T-Rex], let’s limit the special effects [no Neo vs Agent Smith], and let’s try to limit the weapons.
Okay… here are my six

6. L.T. Bonham [Tommy Lee Jones] and Aaron Hallam [Benecio Del Toro] in The Hunted. [This fight would have rated higher, but they didn’t limit the weapons.] ; )

5. Nada [Roddy Piper] vs. Frank [David Keith] in They Live

4. Chaney [Charles Bronson] vs. Jim Henry [Robert Tessier] in Hard Times

3. A Number 1[Lee Marvin] vs. Shack [Ernest Borgnine] from Emperor of the North

2. Rocky Balboa [Sylvester Stallone] vs. any opponent in Rocky – Rocky Balboa

1. Lee [Bruce Lee] vs. everyone from Enter the Dragon

So what did I forget?

Mallow-Con Report

That’s Brenna Barry surrounded by Keith Mallow and Wild Bill Black. For some reason the guys seem much happier than Brenna. I wonder why? That photo and those that follow were taken yesterday at Collector’s Comic-Con in Fort Pierce, Florida. Keith puts on the show and brought in Brenna, Bill and John Beatty as special guests. Keith and Big John always invite me along and since I enjoy their nonsense, I always make an effort to attend.
That’s Aleissa [hope I spelled that correctly] and her boyfriend. Aleissa is one of John’s returning sketch customers. This time she opted for a Batman and Beatty came through in style.
Jesse “Cadre” Hansen was set up selling prints and sketching!Wild Bill Black brought in a bunch of his movies and showed us the latest trailer [which features me, Big John Beatty, James “The James” Howell, and John Higashi in a cameo – where’s our IMDB listing?] for “The Ghost of Garganta.” Bill also talked about plans for future movies as well as a possible syndicated horror movie package complete with a horror host [the excellent Lon Midnight]!

Big Beatty was sketching away and each one was a winner. He was in the ZONE [and I don’t mean this ZONE… although he IS in it as well]. The Punisher sketch below got a lot of attention from fans, but it was the final sketch of the day, a Joker piece, that won the Best Beatty Sketch of the Show Award.

As always, Keith’s shows are a lot of fun. His next one is scheduled for late October. If you can make it, you should!

No Country for Old Men scored an advance look at the poster for “No Country for Old Men” which is based on Cormac McCarthy’s novel of the same name [which I have sitting in my to be read pile].Llewelyn Moss is out hunting when he comes across a pickup truck surrounded by dead men. In the truck he finds a stash of heroin and two million dollars in cash. Moss takes the money and “sets off a chain reaction of catastrophic violence” that results in more murders and Moss on the run.

The screenplay is by Joel Coen [who also directed] and Ethan Coen. “No Country for Old Men” stars Tommy Lee Jones, Javier Bardem, Josh Brolin and Woody Harrelson. You can see the movie when it opens on November 21, 2007.