“Well, of course you have a hand. There it is, see?”
Edward Collins comes home from a hard day of whatever, and finds his younger brother Quentin swilling brandy in the drawing room. Quentin says that he needs it, after what happened today.
“All right, Quentin,” Edward sighs. “What has happened this time?”
And then this is the nonsense that happens next.
Continue reading Episode 803: What Fresh Hell
“Maybe nobody took it! Maybe wherever it is — it wants to be there!”
When Aristede reaches the rendezvous point, his supervillain boss is already waiting for him.
“Why are you late, Aristede?” Victor grumbles. “You know that waiting always makes me fretful.”
This is something of an understatement. When Aristede admits that he doesn’t have the magical artifact he was sent for, Victor lashes out, smacking him across the face three times. “You are stupid! And incompetent! And clumsy!”
Aristede cowers, and makes excuses. Quentin was supposed to bring Aristede the Legendary Hand of Count Petofi in exchange for a cure for lycanthropy, but Quentin said that he lost it.
Victor thunders, “And you believed him?”
“Yes!” Aristede squeaks, as his boss pulls him close and glares at him. “Well, there’s no reason for him not to give me the Hand!”
“Yes, there is,” Victor sighs. “He has a brain in his head — something which you, who have nothing behind that lovely face of yours, can not possibly understand.”
So… hold on. Did he just say that Aristede is lovely?
Continue reading Episode 800: Sitting in a Tree
“You told me that hand was the most magical hand in the world!”
There are moments in life when you have to step back and ask yourself: How did I get here? For example, Grayson Hall. She moved to New York City to pursue an acting career when she was 19 years old. She studied with Lee Strasberg at the Actors Studio. She was in a Broadway revival of Six Characters in Search of an Author. She was nominated for an Oscar and a Golden Globe for her work in The Night of the Iguana. She’s done Pinter and Shaw and Chekhov.
And today she’s on network television at 4:00 in the afternoon, blacked up like a Universal Monsters gypsy, and she’s locked in a life-or-death struggle with Halloween Express.
Continue reading Episode 799: When Halloween Decorations Ruled the World
“I have a small nagging wonder at your even being here.”
When we last left Quentin, he was strapped to a table under a slowly descending swinging axe, not at all in danger of being brutally killed. Quentin was trapped in this entirely non-lethal predicament by Aristede, who rigged up some “Pit and the Pendulum” machinery, and then left him here to not die.
The clock was not winding down and time was not running out, and the pendulum was not inching ever closer to our hero. It was inching, yes. I will concede the inching. But towards what?
Continue reading Episode 796: Death and Taxes
“Can’t you tell what I’m doing? I’m choking you.”
Quentin lights three black candles, and we get the spooky summoning ritual music. “Oh, hidden spirit,” he chants to nobody in particular, “climb out of the pits of Hell, if that is where you be!”
He’s trying to reach Angelique, the sorcerous soap vixen, because sometimes things really are that bad.
“Hidden spirit… Make your presence known to me!”
His face was shredded by a legendary artifact called the Hand of Count Petofi, and just when he hoped to use the Hand again to cure himself, an intruder showed up and snatched it away.
“You are needed! NOW!”
But it’s no use, Angelique doesn’t show up. Last time he tried to call on her, she flew out of the fireplace on demand, but this ritual is a bust. That’s how bad things are for Quentin right now; his most desperate prayers go unanswered.
Magda tells him that they might as well give up, and run away. She rushes to the door, opens it — and finds Angelique, who’s just standing there on the porch. She didn’t hear Quentin’s summoning ritual or anything; she just happened to be coming by anyway. Angelique is a baller.
Continue reading Episode 793: The Puppeteer
“I would laugh, if there was any laughing left in me!”
Quentin Collins returns to the Old House on the Collins estate, empty-handed in several senses of the word. Earlier in the evening, he went to his friend Evan’s house to retrieve the legendary Hand of Count Petofi, a magical artifact that may have the power to release him from a terrible curse. But he returns without it, and his gypsy friend Magda is crushed. She was the one who put the terrible curse on him in the first place, but they’ve made peace with each other, and now they’re bonded together in a way that only two people who wear too much makeup can be.
Continue reading Episode 792: Dances with Wolves
“I don’t think that two supernatural creatures appearing simultaneously at Collinwood could be just a coincidence.”
A metaphor for masculine hunger and violence is loose in the dark forest, a bottomless appetite for carnal destruction preying on the weak. Faced with this upsetting symbolic rejection of civilized cultural norms, Collinsport Animal Control sets up a traffic stop and hopes for the best.
And now we’ve got a new kind of juvenile in detention, a crossbreed nightmare on two legs dressed in grown-up clothes, snarling and clawing at anyone foolish enough to approach its cage. So here’s my question: How do you think they got him out of the bear trap and into a jail cell?
Continue reading Episode 787: The Dog Pound
“We know nothing about this hand, what it can do or what it cannot do.”
Okay, stop me if you’ve heard this one before: A gypsy and a vampire walk into a cave, carrying a box. The bartender says, do you need a hand? And the gypsy says, no thanks, we’ve already got one.
Continue reading Episode 783: A Helping Hand
“Why not bring back a strange, powerful hand to solve all our problems?”
It always starts with a box.
But this time, it’s important. At least, that’s what people tell themselves, just before they pop the lock and open the lid. This time, the wolf is at the door, the bad guy is getting away, the emperor refuses to surrender. I have no choice, they say. It’s really important.
And when they say it’s important, what they mean is I’m important. As in, more important than whoever gets hurt. I am important enough to flip this switch, to drop this bomb, to use this power which no one should wield. I am more important than you, and here’s the proof: this hell I’m unleashing.
Continue reading Episode 778: Pocket Full of Kryptonite