Little Miss Scare-All

A college goth trying to find her way in the world.
Current partakers in bad horror misunderstand what makes the subcategory work

Current partakers in bad horror misunderstand what makes the subcategory work

Oversaturation is killer, even when it attaches itself to a realm so heavily focused on death.

The horror genre has been consumed with purposely bad horror flicks for quite a while, but recently I’ve been noticing an increase in this particular subcategory. This should come as no surprise.

Technology and the Internet have allowed your average inspired citizen to take on filmmaking and garner attention for their efforts. I’m not demonizing these attempts for there have been instances in which the Internet has allowed talented groups of people (no, I’m never going to shut up about my love for Tangerine) to reach acclaim, but it’s impossible to deny that such an entertainment setting has allowed undeserving pieces to float to the surface.

Photo courtesy of Radiograph Pictures

Photo courtesy of Radiograph Pictures

Pair this with the popularity of The Room and RiffTrax, which have re-sparked the general public’s interest in subpar movies, and you’ve got yourself creations such as Revenge of the Spacemen, which sports an unfortunate mess of a trailer that wishes to rely on minimal and misplaced retro horror aesthetics with little else backing the flick.

This subcategory may appear to be perfect for the average, uninformed director newbie because low budgets typically accompany these types of movies, making it ideal for those who can’t afford the proper equipment and aren’t attached to a studio. It comes across as an easy path to take, both in financial and marketing terms, but what ends up happening is that the finished work betrays a complete avoidance of the fact that quality must go into low-quality material.

Some of you who’ve been keeping up with Little Miss Scare-All since its inception may be thinking, “But, Kim, you once blogged about how terribly made releases are necessary for the horror genre. Why the sudden backtracking?” I wouldn’t necessarily consider this an evolution of opinion, rather an expansion of it.

Photo courtesy of Gravitas Ventures

Photo courtesy of Gravitas Ventures

See, good bad horror walks along a line defined by the formulaic. You have to have the cheesy, laughable threat paired up with abysmal acting and questionable cuts. It’s part of the territory. What many people are forgetting it seems is that story is just as important here, maybe even more so.

When you’re working so hard to produce a garbage product, you need to at least give someone a reason to look at your pile of trash. If you don’t, well, it’s just trash. If there’s not a story to be invested in or at the very least characters with addictive personalities to ooze over, then you’re basically asking your audience to sit down and suffer for 90 minutes. You’ve given them no reward.

There’s more to it than the intentional mistakes. Presenting junk as valuable junk is an art form, and people should stop underestimating the amount of effort that goes into such an endeavor.

 

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Goth wardrobes can survive during the pastel cruelty of spring

Goth wardrobes can survive during the pastel cruelty of spring

The flowers are blooming. The birds are chirping. The goths are suffering.

That’s right. It’s spring which means that black clothing is disappearing from racks the world over. What’s a poor darkling to do when all the stores are pushing their brightly colored floral prints onto consumers? Hibernation is out of the question, although it is tempting. You could make sure to get your wardrobe shopping sprees done in the fall and winter, but what if you get the urge to do so earlier in the year?

Are we doomed to suffer? Certainly not.

If you like trying on your clothes before making a purchase, your best bet is to start in your community. Some populous cities, such as Tampa, are home to goth clothing stores. This is your most reasonably priced option, but unless you live near these lucky locations, you’ll have to make quite the drive to give this choice a shot. What you might save in shipping fees could very well be spent on gas money.

Many of these shops feature items from Hell Bunny, Spin Doctor and Sourpuss to name a few. Finding all of these brands in one spot is a heartwarming experience, especially when you come across a pair of creepers on a shoe rack. It’s goth heaven, I assure you.

Photo courtesy of Ravens & Rockers

Photo courtesy of Ravens & Rockers

Of course and unfortunately, a lot of cities (ex: Orlando) aren’t home to stores like Ravens & Rockers. If you still want to do some in-person shopping, however, conventions are another option, specifically Spooky Empire. The con’s April date is a perfect middle-of-the-year break from the pastels you see taking over the malls. Keep in mind that items will be priced a little higher here.

Both of these options have a similar downside. If you’re my size (x-small), it’ll be exceedingly difficult to find anything that fits. Since these environments don’t bring in as many customers as online stores do, it’s best to keep inventory to a select, popular range, which tends to be small all the way through to large, sometimes x-large.

If you’re not in that size range, try calling the stores or booths beforehand to see if paying a visit is worth your time.

Then there’s the Internet. Oh what a glorious invention.

Many months ago, I blogged about my experience with Vera’s Eyecandy. While I adore the selection, it hasn’t evolved too much since then, so I’ve started to look elsewhere. Again, I find the same problem I always have, with stores refusing to acknowledge that people my size exist.

Photo courtesy of Blame Betty

Photo courtesy of Blame Betty

Then I discovered Blame Betty. At first, everything seems to be way overpriced. No way in hell was I paying $80 for a dress. I’m relieved to say that the prices for U.S. residents aren’t what they seem. The site defaults to its Canadian prices, but a quick changeover will show you that many dresses are in the $50-$70 price range.

Items come from respectable brands and usually are available in a wide range of sizes. The $8 shipping fee is a bit of a turnoff, but chances are your package will get to you in about a week. That’s rather impressive for international deliveries.

If none of these options appeal to you, there’s always thrift stores. That’s a day’s adventure all on its own, but the finds can be memorable. I’m still impressed with my friend for chancing upon some $10 Dr. Martens a year ago.

No matter what path you take, there will always be some disadvantages. It comes with the alternative territory. Just remember: The sun is out, but that doesn’t mean you have to let its rays dry out your wardrobe. There’s hope for you bats out there.

 

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Dom/sub relationships aren’t the misogynist catastrophes people find them to be

Dom/sub relationships aren’t the misogynist catastrophes people find them to be

Activists are constructing arguments left and right advocating for parents to stop spanking their kids. Other activists are fighting against spanking as well, but they’re not wishing to help children.

Here, let’s talk about sex, baby.

Every once in a while I come across another post from a feminist claiming that Dom/sub relationships are built upon a hatred for women and that supporting said relationships makes women eternally subservient to men.

I too am a feminist, but if the collar I wear every day is any indication, I strongly disagree with this sentiment. Never have I felt more liberated than when I’ve been dominated.

**For those of you who stick to a simple, back-to-basics style of sex and don’t know what I’m referring to when I say Dom/sub, here’s a handy post that will give you a broad understanding of what I mean.**

What many people fail to realize about BDSM and the various subcategories that stem out from it is that respect is critical, and no matter what foul-mouthed phrases are spit out to the sub, they are the ones that are in full control. Yes, that person who’s beaten, choked, pulled on and has hot wax poured all over their body is at the top of the power structure.

Photo courtesy of Les Films du Losange

Photo courtesy of Les Films du Losange

To have a healthy rough sexual relationship, rules should be set in place upon a stable foundation of trust. Since the subs are the ones that have pain and/or situations inflicted upon them, they tend to be the ones who decide what the boundaries are. They give Doms permission to do what they do, not the other way around.

Now let’s say that these boundaries are violated. That does not speak to a sexist form of sex. That speaks to rape. It’s horrible, but it’s not reflective of the fetish; it speaks to the individual.

This is all besides the point, however. All of this is said with the assumption that men are always doing the beating, but one Dutch study concluded that 26% of men in their California pool had submissive tendencies. And it’s silly to think that these activities don’t occur between gay men.

Photo courtesy of Strand Releasing

Photo courtesy of Strand Releasing

If BDSM was subconsciously constructed to parallel a sexist society, a small batch of men saying that they are submissive would be an exception to this theory, but when a significant portion rises up and states that they’re into being tied up, told what to do and thrown around, then you have to step back from your overly critical feminist eye and start to wonder whether there’s really anything wrong in what you’re denoucning.

Some people ask me, “Kim, how could you ever be into being humiliated on such an intense level?” To be honest, I have no idea why. Maybe it’s because I’m so in control of my day-to-day life that the idea of relinquishing power is overwhelming, but really, I don’t need an answer.

Some people like feet while some are into voyeurism. As long as everyone involved in a sexual situation is a consenting adult, I don’t see why anyone else should care.

 

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Twitter: @TheKimSlichter

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