We’re pleased to announce a new horror/exploitation column will be debuting on Dread Central on Monday, April 18th, at 7am PT: “Son of Oddservations” by fan commentator/filmmaker Andy Lalino (producer, H.G. Lewis’s The Uh-Oh! Show).
Son of Oddservations is an all-new continuation of Lalino’s previous fandom column “Oddservations,” which ran from 2005-2008. “I am happy to return to column writing concerning horror, sci-fi, exploitation, and fandom, especially for Dread Central, the home of horror on the web,” says Lalino, a self-proclaimed veteran fanboy who’s experienced every facet of fandom: horror, sci-fi, comics, RPG’s, sword & sorcery, and even independent filmmaking.
Lalino has been a horror/sci-fi fan for as long as he can remember, and he’s eager to share his enthusiasm and love for the fantastic genres with other fans. Especially appealing to the columnist is the celebration of horror and exploitation of the 20th century, the millennium of practical special effects and the “Age of Illustration.”
“I am a great admirer of the make-up geniuses and SPFX masters when practical effects were the key visual – and continue to be impressed by new talent that emerges in the practical FX field,” exclaims Lalino. “I also cherish the hand-drawn illustrations of vintage movie posters and book covers. Frazetta. Ken Kelly. Boris Vallejo. SanJulian. Esteban Moroto. Pablo Marcos and so many more. I can never get enough looking at the wonderful cover art that graced illustrated horror magazines, the pulps, sci-fi paperbacks, and even toy packaging. I miss it; it’s a lost art!” he laments.
Son of Oddservations will decidedly set a “Purist” tone when it debuts on Dread Central. “One of the many things I love about horror is how much it celebrates the past,” states Lalino. “Even now, in the days of smartphones and tablets, a horror fan is just as eager to discuss Lon Chaney and Tod Browning as he or she would Insidious 2 – that, to me, is something to be admired. Son of Oddservations will take this love of horror and exploitation’s history, celebrate it, and endeavor to influence both fans and creatives to immerse themselves in grindhouse and drive-in culture – especially from the 1950’s to the early 1980s.”
Lalino plans to champion independent filmmaking and the philosophy of “cinema over software.” “There’s an over-abundance and over-reliance on CGI to keep an audience interested in the presentation,” Lalino complains. “The more we as audience gets accustomed to the endless wonderscapes that CGI affords, the less we will appreciate the simple pleasure that is a horror film,” he warns.
Reboots, sequels, and reimaginings are also subjects to be tackled in Son of Oddservations. “Big Hollywood spends untold dollars securing licenses and properties that the masses are familiar with, most notably Marvel, DC and Star Wars. Meanwhile, the independent filmmaker has to rely on conjuring their own original characters, storylines, and scripts. It’s unfair – the deck is stacked against the original thinker and artisan. Son of Oddservations will have much to comment about this subject and help the struggling independent author, artist, actor, filmmaker, SPFX artist, print publisher as much as possible. They are the future, not Hollywood. Those artists are doing the heavy lifting, dreaming up original ideas much like the great masters Lucas, Spielberg, and Carpenter once did. We should spend our income on their endeavors, not Disney’s.”
Son of Oddservations promises to be a fannish thrill ride: unpredictable, fearless, aggravating – but hopefully and ultimately enriching. “It’s my goal to comment on what it was like being a fan in the 20th century, and the negative effects of how new technologies and sensibilities have changed the landscape.” The “Rock of Gibralter” of the column will be what Lalino refers to as the “Grit and Grindhouse” of the ‘70s, primarily. There will be plenty of fun stuff, too: interviews, videos, reviews – and you’ll even be encouraged to chime in with your opinions on social media!
Horror fans worry that with the CGI onslaught of endless science-fiction, fantasy, superhero, and kiddie movies – will there be enough interest in horror as a genre in the future? “Yes, people will always love horror – and the horror fan is always the one who comes to the rescue when the movie industry is about to fold,” reassures Lalino. “Like anything else, horror has its ebbs and tides, but always comes back from the grave – never count it out, just when you think the genre is in trouble, it just takes one filmmaker or author with a vision to bring it back to it’s rightful place – as King of the Fantastic Genres.”
…and that is something that Son of Oddservations will truly honor and memorialize.