Studying film in college we were constantly subjected to important cinema. Movies which either helped establish production norms or predicated stylistic moments within the medium. They were important as they were exhausting. With a cosmetology so often inaccessible, I was typically left wondering, what would Cecil B. Demille have done with a talent like Dolph Lundgren? What would Orson Wells have done with a killer turkey?
I was never one to question whether or not bad movies had a place in the world. Some of my fondest memories from adolescence are the nights sitting around with my friends watching scene after scene of questionable value and quality. A zombie loses an arm. A down and out cop gets called “loose cannon”. A girl takes her top off, only after discovering the thespian limitations of looking like a Mexican Cybill Shepherd. Usually we would file into a mom and pop video store, already having established the criteria of our pending movie selection during the drive over. Somewhere on a dilapidated VHS cardboard casing we would be required to find three words. Gory. Mutated. Sexy. This procedure most likely lead to my name being placed in a secret government file for “at watch” citizens. Sometime in the future I could easily be called in for questioning just for having rented “L.A. Blood Bath” and “Gore Whore” in the same night in 1997.
Had we watched movies of actual substance the events would have been far less memorable. It was a joyful, social event. I can’t remember a single part of a night watching “The Shawshank Redemption”, but I sure can remember a vampire hooker violently chomping down on one of her Johns and prompting my friend Daniel to quote the Owl from the Tootsie Pop commercial. Beyond this, after studying film, and trying to make film, there is something inspiring about the bad movie, much more so than acclaimed cinema. The thought of “this killer turkey thing actually got financial backing” would even give confidence to an aspiring writer with 98 pages of boogers.
In short, “Citizen Kane” is an important film. But, in it’s own special way, so is “Thankskilling”.
I don’t know whom, if anyone, is reading this, especially as this is the first post of an actual comic on this site. Perhaps it would be egocentric of me to expect anyone to be reading this – but I would like to assume that at least Brandon or Nicole (or if I’m lucky, perhaps even both), are reading this. If I’m really lucky John and Lawren (not yet featured) are also reading it.
So to Brandon and Nicole, yay us. The comic has gone live, after months of me obsessing over the idea, bugging the both of you over script ideas, then ignoring you both as a I disappear to draw, ink, color, or just plain slip away into the comic. So, sorry about that, but hey, I followed through and we actually have a comic. That’s good right?
To Lawren and John… well sorry… you are going to show up… just not yet. My bad.
That being said, the idea of “Life from the Cheap Seats” is that of a semi-autobiographical webcomic that also serves as a blog for myself, my wife, Nicole, and my good friend Brandon, along with our many other friends here in Los Angeles. It follows our lives, the struggle of our careers in the entertainment industry, battles with unemployment, our thoughts on film and anything else that just might cross our minds upon which we feel the need to blog, complain or share for no apparent reason.
And on that note, we arrive at Bad Movie Night. Nicole and Brandon take a particularly immense pleasure in forcing me to suffer through the worst films that they can find. In all fairness I do have a taste for bad monster movies, and do on a regular basis put my wife through the pain of horrible, ginormous, CGI sharks feasting on hapless swimmers on the Sci-fi channel (I know it is SyFy now, but that is a whole other rant for me). But this strip may actually be my typical Saturday night – and the killer Turkey holding a knife… well that is completely accurate.
Of course, I am told that these bad movies actually serve some sort of purpose in our lives, but me… well, I’m unclear on that purpose, so I will let Brandon speak more on that matter. Expect a rant from him soon – as soon as my dumbass remembers to email him that I need the rant. It will happen. I think… I’m even writing a post-it note to remind myself to write the e-mail. How could this plan fail?