Thursday, December 31

2015 Roundup & Reflection



As we rapidly approach last call for this year, I thought it the perfect time to look back and reflect on the year 2015. It was an interesting year, all things considered, and a very successful one for me, professionally-speaking...

During the last year I:

  • Was inducted into the HORROR HOST HALL OF FAME
  •  Won a RONDO AWARD for BEST BLOG (for this blog!)
  • Produced 29 episodes of THE FANTASTIC FILMS OF VINCENT PRICE
  •  Had 3 short stories published: Emby Press, Horrified Press, and Empire Comics Lab. Two others were accepted into anthologies but still await publication.
  • Wrote 4 Scary Monsters Magazine columns as well as a piece for the Body Count Zine.
  • Wrote 10 short film and two feature film scripts
  • Was a guest on 14 podcast shows
  • Produced 4 video segments for the STAY COOL GEEK podcast
  • Did a radio interview with NASHVILLE FILM RADIO
  • Hosted THE COMEDY OF TERRORS live at Wonderfest with special guests Sara Karloff and Victoria Price
  •  Hosted A NIGHTMARE ON ELM ST., THE GOONIES, & TAILYPO at the Franklin Drive-In
  • Hosted the 12th annual DR. GANGRENE'S HORROR HOOTENANNY
  • Wrote/Produced a short film based on an H.P. Lovecraft short story
  • Wrote 100 blog posts
  • Introduced TOURIST TRAP at the Belcourt Theater's all-night horror movie marathon
  • Made a number of live appearances around town for various events and fundraisers.

Thank you to everyone who voted for me in the Rondo Awards, and to the HORROR HOST HALL OF FAME for the induction. Those are both HUGE honors, and I'm truly grateful.


This was the first year I actually kept tally of my activities - I started keeping track somewhere around mid-year, and probably missed one or two things along the way. Seeing that list makes me realize that I kept busy, and that makes me proud. I like to stay busy. My goal is to top that list next year - but I'm not really sure if that's possible!


2015 was also a tough year, however, as a number of notable celebrities passed away, including:

Christopher Lee, Roddy Piper, Leonard Nimoy, Wes Craven, Robert Z'Dar, Gunnar Hansen, Terry Pratchett, James Best, Filthy Phil Taylor, and Lemmy...


Damn. That's a helluva list. Looking at all those names together, that would have made an awesome convention if they had all appeared together, wouldn't it? Lemmy's passing in particular really hit me hard. He is such an iconic figure, a true one of a kind rebel, a legendary figure the likes of which we'll never see again.

In 2011 I wrote the following review of the documentary LEMMY - I still find that documentary just as inspirational, and will miss that giant for some time to come. Hail Motorhead.


Wednesday, December 30

Dr. Gangrene Presents #11 - The Last Round

 Doc Gangrene Presents hosts an episode of One Step Beyond called THE LAST ROUND starring Charles Bronson as a boxer who keeps seeing a ghostly apparition backstage. Fun short - it aired in 1961, Bronson would have been 39 at the time this was shot. Directed by John Newland, who doesn't get enough credit for the quality of this show. The better episodes were on par with any other horror anthology series.


Sunday, December 27

Dr. Gangrene Presents #10 - The Dark Room

Looking at this old episode of my program Dr. Gangrene Presents I was struck by just how pretty Cloris Leachman was in her younger days. This came from an episode of ONE STEP BEYOND from 1959 called The Dark Room, and features Cloris as an American photographer in Paris who hires a model with an interesting face to pose for her, who turns out to be a bit on the unusual - and supernatural, side.



Cloris was 33 at the time this was shot. Born in Des Moines, Iowa, on April 30, 1926, Cloris was a Miss America pageant entrant, competing as Miss Chicago. She has had a long career in Hollywood, and is still working to this day at age 89. Genre fans will remember her most notably as Frau Blucher in Mel Brooks' YOUNG FRANKENSTEIN, with over 260 credits on IMDB in film and television. Here's to you, Miss Leachman, you've had quite the career!

Thursday, December 24

The Raven

In this episode Dr. Gangrene takes a look at the Roger Corman film THE RAVEN, starring Vincent Price, Boris Karloff, Peter Lorre, Hazel Court, and Jack Nicholson.



About this series: Dr. Gangrene, Physician of Fright and Award-winning Nashville-based TV Horror Host (aka writer/film historian Larry Underwood) explores the films of the merchant of menace, Vincent Price, in chronological order from first to last, approaching them from a scholarly perspective, offering commentary, review and criticism. In this episode Dr. Gangrene takes a look at the Roger Corman film THE RAVEN, starring Vincent Price, Boris Karloff, Peter Lorre, Hazel Court, and Jack Nicholson.

Tuesday, December 22

Vincent Price NFL Football Rap Song

Vincent Price rapping about the NFL? Yes Please! This is part of the 1987 NFL football documentary, and the rap is done to the tune of Michael Jackson's THRILLER. Pretty funny and cool clip.

Wednesday, December 16

Tower of London 1962

In episode #50 of THE FANTASTIC FILMS OF VINCENT PRICE Dr. Gangrene takes a look at the 1962 Roger Corman remake of Tower of London, a darker take on the 1939 Universal film, focusing on macabre elements such as torture, death, and ghostly apparitions. Price stars as the scheming Lord Richard, who covets the throne of England and will stop at nothing to achieve it.


About this series: Dr. Gangrene, Physician of Fright and Award-winning Nashville-based TV Horror Host (aka writer/film historian Larry Underwood) explores the films of the merchant of menace, Vincent Price, in chronological order from first to last, approaching them from a scholarly perspective, offering commentary, review and criticism.

Wednesday, December 9

Dr. Gangrene Live Show 4-26-02

I recently started revisiting some of the old live shows I did at the cable access station in Nashville TN. The one I'm featuring in this post is from April 26th, 2002. The cable access station had just opened shortly before this, and we were the first chow to broadcast LIVE from the new station. This was actually our second show, and featured a band called THE REVERBIANS and their awesome dancing robot, toy collector Michael Lester, writer Stephen J. Hill, and more!








Addams Family Polar Bear on Night Gallery

Now that I finally have a DVR and access to METV I have been a happy Mad Doctor, grabbing a number of old TV series, including Rod Serling's Night Gallery. I was watching an episode the other night entitled "Hatred Unto Death" (with a second very short segment called "How to Cure the Common Vampire") when I spotted a familiar face. Not one of the actors, mind you, I'm talking a famous prop in the background.


The episode (from Season 3, aired May 27, 1973) involves a big game hunter (Steve Forrest) who brings a gorilla back from the jungle to civilization after realizing there is a link between them, a hatred carried on from a past life. At one point the gorilla gets loose in a warehouse, and that's where I spotted the fine fellow featured above - the bear from THE ADDAMS FAMILY TV show. No doubt the prop was sitting around the backlot where Serling and Company filmed and they thought why not throw it in the shot.


Here's a shot of Gomez with his bear - definitely the same one. Night Gallery is perhaps my favorite TV anthology series - although it's hard to pick just one. Karloff's Thriller, Twilight Zone, Tales from the Darkside, Monsters... all great stuff. Perhaps someone will revive the TV horror anthology format. Could be interesting to see some fresh terror tales for today's audiences...!

Friday, December 4

Tales of Terror

Episode 49 of the Fantastic Films of Vincent Price takes a look at the 1962 Roger Corman anthology film, TALES OF TERROR, featuring three tales based on Edgar Allan Poe short stories - and all starring Vincent Price.


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