Posts tagged halloween

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Delusion: The Best Haunted Attraction In Southern California (And Possibly Anywhere Else)

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I am a huge horror nerd. I love scary movies with spooky soundtracks, Halloween is my favorite holiday, and October makes me the happiest because it means my friends and I get to visit all the worthy haunted attractions in the Los Angeles area. We’ve done the typical LA staples like Universal Studios Halloween Horror Nights, Knott’s Scary Farm, the Haunted Hayride, etc. They’re fun and charming in their own way, but Delusion surpasses them all easily!

Appropriately named, Jon Braver is the genius behind this live, interactive, chill inducing “Haunted Play” that not only relies on some incredible production value, but includes some of the best live actors I’ve ever seen. The best part of this attraction is that the story changes every single year, and this latest one, about author Elena Fitzgerald’s literary (and not so friendly) character creations coming to life, is my favorite yet. I loved it so much I went twice this year! And, to be honest, my favorite part is seeing my friends who never get scared, actually freak out. No fake chainsaws needed here!

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The location has also changed each year, so none of us lucky (or unlucky?) visitors have any idea what to expect, and, this year, they secured an enormous, super creepy old house in the historic West Adams district. It was truly remarkable to see how each room in the house was staged in detail to really help the audience feel like they’re part of the story and to up the psychological thriller factor to the holy sh** degree.

There’s not a single negative thing I can say about Delusion. The actors are insanely talented, the atmosphere and special effects are jaw dropping, the musical score is spine tingling, and even the welcoming and social media staff are lovely. Fans are called Delusioners, so I’m gonna go ahead and call myself a Delusionerd. I’ve been one since my first, amazing Haunted Play experience, and I can’t wait to see what they come up with next year.

Rightfully so, this event sells out immediately, but, lucky for you, they release new dates every so often so make sure to sign up for their official website newsletter, follow them on Twitter, or like them on Facebook.

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Fellow nerd celebrities are big fans of Delusion, too!

Screenshot from 2014-11-07 17:02:50

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How To Build A Dalek

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Last Halloween, my friend Stephanie revealed an incredible costume she had been working on all year: a dalek. At first, I thought ‘How is that even possible? How will you wear it?” I underestimated the creativity, crafty skills and motivation Stephanie had behind this undertaking. It was unfortunate that New York was slammed by a huge snow storm Halloween weekend which cancelled all local parties, including the big one Stephanie had planned to show the dalek off at, and hopefully win a costume contest at. I couldn’t let this incredible costume go back into the basement without sharing it with all my fellow Doctor Who fans, so I set upon compiling all the information I could from Stephanie on how she pulled this off. Hopefully some of you will feel inspired by this to create your own awesome Halloween costumes this year!

I asked Stephanie to answer a few questions for me about the experience of building her dalek and hopefully a little advice for those of us thinking of trying this out:

Lissa: When did you first decide to take on the project of building the dalek? Was there some thing/event in particular that prompted you to do it? 

Stephanie: I started in February of 2011.  I am not sure what exactly got me into the idea, but when I found out Dalek’s stand about 5 feet tall (and that is my height), I figured it would be an excellent idea.  Then when I found the very detailed plans online, I was sold.

L: Did you have some idea at the beginning of how long it might take you to finish it, and how close was your estimate to the actual time it took?

S: I don’t think I had an idea, but I definitely did not think it would take the amount of time (and money) that it did.  I knew it was good to start early, and I’m glad I did, because I ended up finishing very close to Halloween.

L: Was it challenging to collect the materials?

S: It definitely was.  I was trying to find components that would work but be cheap and light and would make the final product mobile/portable.

L:  What were some of the changes you made (if any) from the original set of build instructions you used?

S: I didn’t make many changes, except ones to make it able for me to go inside.  Accidentally, it ended up taller than expected, but that turns out to be good because now people who are not petite like me can go inside it as well.

 

L: What was the biggest challenge in the project and how did you work past it?

S: The biggest challenge was making the dome for the head.  I could not find any bowls that were the right size (huge), so I decided I would use paper mache over a large beach ball.  However, I also could not find a beach ball that was the right size, despite ordering some online that turned out to be incorrectly described.  I finally had to use wire mesh and shape my own dome and then cover it with paper mache.

 

L: I know thanks to a big snow storm you were unable to show the dalek at  Halloween parties. Did you get to actually take it out for display to the public? Have you made any plans to display it since halloween?

S: I have not yet had a chance to bring it out to the public yet.  I do plan on attending one or two cons this year, though, to show it off.  And hopefully this coming Halloween.  Unfortunately I need a large venue to effectively display it, and that can be hard to find.  (It does not fit through a conventional doorway, except in pieces, so that also creates a challenge.  I have to put it together in one room and stay there the whole time.)

 

Now for the technical details:

The plans Stephanie used were found here. That site offers plans for several different styles of daleks. Stephanie chose to build the ‘New Series Dalek’, which premiered in 2005. I’m assuming she picked that model because, being fans of David Tennant’s 10th Doctor, her boyfriend Dave would be happy to wear the appropriate Doctor costume.

For technical notes from Stephanie and her bio, read past the break.

(more…)

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Nerdy Pet Costumes, Anyone?

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We’ve seen many a princess puppy or pirate cat prance around on Halloween.  These pale in comparison to the amount of awesome and geeky that went into this simple, yet brilliant costume.

Esther from Villain School Dropout has been known to occasionally dress her little buddy, Brian, in some fun doggy attire. This time, however, she’s taken a Happy Dwarf doll, cut off its cheeks:

And combined it with a piece of fabric cut from a brown dress to make Brian into a tiny little Ewok:

Our hats are off to you, Esther. Just brilliant.

Do you dress your pets for Halloween? Post your pics!

♥ JackieBee

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Ebert’s original review of Halloween

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Just saw this on Mr. Ebert’s Twitter feed. Really cool to see this review from back in the day.

http://rogerebert.suntimes.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/19791031/REVIEWS/40823003/102

Unzipped makeup

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In the spirit of Halloween I thought I would share this awesome tutorial… It is about the unzipped look from Mac a few years ago. Enjoy!

Jess D. (1/2 of Hooked On Veg)

Come on a Veg-tastic Voyage with us!

http://hookedonveg.podbean.com/

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Random Thought of the Day…!

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•  ‧ ☆ ☼   •

I’m gonna be a serial killer for Halloween! Now if I can just think of a Halloween costume……….

ø¤º°Sparkles°º¤ø

Artery Cloggers…terrible for u but sooooo good.

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Mr Doc and I went out to a couple of really awesome haunted houses last night(I will post a review of those later). On the way home we stopped at the only Denny’s within 100 miles of where we live, and I discovered something amazing. A Fried Cheese Melt. Basically it’s a Grilled Cheese sandwich with Cheese Sticks in the middle. They give you marinara to dip it in. It was delicious but I swear I FELT my arteries clogging as I ate it.

Childhood: It follows you to Adulthood

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As a child I was scared of lots of things, I didn’t like the dark, I was terrified by spiders, vampires gave me the willies. Normal stuff for kids.

But one night, when I was about 7, my mom rented the cartoon version of the Legend of Sleepy Hollow. All I remember is having weeks upon weeks of nightmares about the Headless Horseman.

I didn’t think about it again until I was 11. In 6th grade I was in an advanced Literature class and we traveled to a nearby town to see several short stories get the theater treatment. I really enjoyed The Monkey’s Paw, and The Tell-Tale Heart. But then, they started telling the story of that ghoul of a German Mercenary, the Headless Horseman. I was so scared I had to leave. The HH scared me so bad, I couldn’t even finish the Wishbone version of the story.

My freshman year of college, my parents and I took a trip to Walt Disney World and we attended Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween party. I was really excited about seeing the parade until my Mom informed me that it was led by the Headless Horseman…on a real horse…whose hooves sometimes sparked on the cobblestones. *shudders* So instead we rode Splash Mountain three times in a row. It was tons more fun than having a week or more worth of nightmares.

Even now, 5 years later, at 23, I still am uneasy about anything to do with Sleepy Hollow. I won’t even watch the Johnny Depp movie, and he is one of my favorite actors of all time.

Childish it may be, we all have fears, some we admit to, others we don’t. But we aren’t the only ones with those fears. And it’s so much better to share them than keep them bottled up inside.

So to start a sort-of Halloween discussion…what is something that has terrified you since you were a child? Or something that is a newly discovered fear?

New York Comic Con – Day 3

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Well, here we are folks – the end of the road. My last day at Comic Con was relatively low-key, but there were enough exciting moments to make it just as good as the rest of the weekend.

8:00am – Wake up for Day 3 of Comic Con! I am excited about the adventures that await, but also somewhat glad it is the last day. To be perfectly honest, I have worn myself out with all this fun I’ve been having. I might be getting too old for this…

Nah! That’s crazy talk!

9:01 – The journey begins with a train platform full of people dressed to the nines for NYCC. We all sit in the same part of the train. It occurs to me that all 3 days this weekend I have met cool people because of this convention.
10:21 – Back inside NYC, but have to get the monies before making my way. This convention is cleaning me out.
10:45  After meeting a friend en route to con, I arrive at Javits Center. We are made to go downstairs just to go back up again. I think this is silly but whatever.
11:09 – Haven’t been here that long and already spent a ton of money. Got my copy of “Days Missing” signed and talked to the guys about the panel last night. They threw in a free poster, also signed. Dudes were super nice and gave me a great start to my morning. I also got my screwdriver for the Doctor Who costume I’m working on and discussed the series for a bit with the people running that table. I vow to not spend any more money this weekend, as I am close to being The Broke.
12:40pm – Found some cool prints and decided to break my “no spending” rule. Talked to the artist (Tim Smith) for a bit as well. He was really cool and nice. You could tell he loves his craft and doesn’t really care about the money.
1:36 – I feel like half my time here has been spent on lines. Standing in one now, this time for the Walking Dead panel. While waiting, a friend and I come up with new nicknames for each other – basic and expansion. This because her holding onto my shoulder so we wouldn’t get separated made me think of an expansion game. We are such nerds! But I love everything about it.
2:34 – After much craziness, and a near riot, we finally get seats for the Walking Dead panel. First we got a 6&1/2  minute clip of footage from the 2nd episode. I’m not gonna lie, Gracie, the series looks pretty bad-ass. I’m looking forward to the premiere on Halloween.

Next, we got introduced to the people behind the show (writer, director, producer). The moderator went through a series of questions about some of the decisions involved (making it a TV show instead of a movie, the choice of doing it on AMC & how the network responded to it, and how it feels to see the thing finally come to fruition. Apparently AMC has been very supportive of this project. They also said they plan on taking this “on every spastic direction we can”. It sounds like there will be plenty of surprises while still keeping fans of the book happy. I think it will help that it’s on a cable network, because it means they can push the boundary on how far they take it and what they can do without getting hounded by the network.

After we got through a round of questions, we got another clip from the show. More questions followed, this time focusing on casting as opposed to story and production. We then got introduced to the cast, as the actors were added to the panel. Each actor got a chance to talk about their character for a bit and their familiarity with the comic the series is based off of. The panel gave us a good look at the series and its characters without giving away too many details. They eventually opened it up to questions from the audience, then concluded by playing the trailer and telling everyone one final time to watch the show. Their success depends greatly on us, so don’t let them down! (That last part is all me, but I’m sure the panel would have agreed).
4:12 – Panel concludes. We wander a bit before another friend sends out the bat signal and I meet them for dinner. Overall I would call this weekend a huge success. I will do a wrap-up and photo blog ASAP (hopefully tomorrow). Until next time, fellow nerds!

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