Category Archives: Holidays

Comics Grinder Winter Giveaway!

It’s time for a Comics Grinder Winter Giveaway!

I have some treasures to give away. Here is the plan: I will mail out any of these treats to you in return for a little good cheer back. My prime objective is to get more folks to become aware of my book of collected works in comics, “A Night at the Sorrento and Other Stories.” What I ask of you is to read the book and give it a review on Amazon. Of course, say whatever you like. I will truly appreciate the feedback. And it can be as short and sweet as you like too. You can easily purchase my book (or read for free) at Amazon. Just go right here. I think this will be a natural fit for my thoughtful readers.

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Filed under Comics, Comics Grinder, Giveaway, Holidays, Promotions

Santa Has a Shadow: KRAMPUS

Krampus movie

The shadow brings balance to the light. And so it is even for Santa Claus. When was the last time you saw a really good Christmas horror movie? Well, now we have “Krampus,” the movie. And as writer/director Michael Dougherty makes clear in the interview below, the dark side to Christmas isn’t new. Consider, for instance, the chilling Dickens classic, “A Christmas Carol,” or the noirish Frank Capra classic, “It’s a Wondefrul Life.” Below is footage from the KRAMPUS premiere with writer/director/producer Michael Dougherty, writer/producer Zach Shields and writer Todd Casey:

Krampus is the one-man cleanup crew for all the naughty boys and girls. Seems like Santa couldn’t be in charge of everything. Maybe he had no choice. The origins of Krampus go further back than Santa Claus. By the 17th century, folklore had teamed up Krampus and Santa. Perhaps we’ve made a mistake to separate these two for American tastes. Then again, for the purposes of this movie, we want Krampus to work alone.

While I would never begrudge anyone’s enjoyment of a traditional family comedy this season, we need its polar opposite: typical family gathering but with bloody horror. Oh sure, and a touch of comedy. “Krampus” stars Toni Collette, Adam Scott, David Koechner, and Conchata Ferrell. Writer/director Michael Dougherty has contributed to the screenplays for “X-Men 2,” “Urban Legends: Bloody Mary” and “Superman Returns” before directing his debut, “Trick ‘r Treat” in 2007.

KRAMPUS release date in the U.S. is this Friday, December 4, 2015.

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Filed under Holidays, movies, Universal Studios

Review: THE WALKING DEAD: THE POP-UP BOOK

The zombie book of the season!

The zombie book of the season!

It is ingrained in our DNA to thirst for bloody horror. Oh, wait, I think I just used that opening line recently. Well, it’s a good one and it certainly applies to The Walking Dead. I firmly believe that, when you strike the right balance of evenly spaced blood splatters and evenly paced plotting, it will resonate with an audience. It’s the next phase a horror creator wants to get to and fast just like Robert Kirkman has succeeded in doing. In tribute to horror done right, behold “The Walking Dead: The Pop-Up Book,” published by Insight Editions.

Lots of details and hidden goodies

Lots of details and hidden goodies!

This is no mere pop-up book! Look it over form every angle, there is plenty to look at and marvel over. This masterful work is created by paper engineers David Hawcock (Journal of Inventions: Leonardo Da Vinci) and Becca Zerkin, with text by Stephani Danelle Perry, and illustrated by Sally Elizabeth Jackson.

AMC Walking Dead Insight Editions

Zombie Surprise!

Zombie Surprise!

Based on AMC’s hit television series, “The Walking Dead,” this has got to be the ultimate gift idea for many a friend and loved one into zombies, horror movies, or pop culture in general. It’s big but also compact enough to fit comfortably on your coffee table or wherever you like to keep groovy ghoulies.

THE WALKING DEAD: THE POP-UP BOOK is a hardcover featuring five glorious page spreads and over 20 pop-ups. For more details, visit our friends at Insight Editions right here.

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Filed under Books, Gifts, Holidays, Insight Editions, Television, The Walking Dead

Everyone Can Enjoy Cosplay at PureCostumes.com

Deluxe Darth Vader Adult Costume available at PureCostumes.com

Deluxe Darth Vader Adult Costume available at PureCostumes.com

Cosplay is for everyone at PureCostumes.com. It can be anytime and anywhere. If you feel like dressing up as Darth Vader, just go for it. I know I’d like to. And there’s so much more to find at this unique outlet for all kinds of costumes.

Steampunk Fantasy Adult Costume from California Costumes available at PureCostumes.com

Steampunk Fantasy Adult Costume from California Costumes available at PureCostumes.com

Let’s say you’re into steampunk, PureCostumes.com has got you covered with the steampunk costumes by California Costumes. The key is in all the details and this year will see a bunch of new styles that are sure to please any steampunk enthusiast.

Pinky Pie Adult Costume available at PureCostumes.com

Pinky Pie Adult Costume available at PureCostumes.com

Keep browsing and you are bound to find something that strikes your fancy. Maybe you’re a fan of My Little Pony. Then check out all the options, from the youngest fans to adult fans, at PureCostumes.com.

Spider-Man costume available at PureCostumes.com

Spider-Man costume available at PureCostumes.com

Or maybe you’re looking for something classic, like a Spider-Man costume. You can find it right here.

Minions costumes available at PureCostumes.com

Minions costumes available at PureCostumes.com

With something for the whole family, PureCostumes is definitely your one-stop-shop. So, the next time you’re feeling like cosplay, go visit PureCostumes right here.

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Filed under Comic-Con, Comics, Cosplay, Costumes, Halloween, Holidays, Lifestyle, pop culture, Purecostumes.com

THE CHRISTMAS TRUCE OF 1914

1914 Christmas Truce

The Christmas Truce of 1914 is a moment in time that is an object lesson for us all.

The First World War (1914-1918) was six months in when a push for a cease-fire for Christmas took hold mainly between the German and English infantry. The men stepped out of their trenches and met the enemy on the No Man’s Land fields. And they discovered that this war, fought in the trenches was, indeed, fueled by entrenched hatred.

The fires were constantly stoked by each side’s propaganda machine. Entrenched hatred, whether on the battlefield or wherever, is a powerful force not easily overcome. And yet, the Germans and the British, on that Christmas of 1914, found common ground.

How many of us can find common ground? It is such a fundamental question applicable in a myriad of ways. Why don’t we try harder to find common ground? Is it because we don’t feel compelled enough to do so? Do we prefer to inflict pain and destruction? Too often, we want to maintain our position at all costs and find it difficult, if not impossible, to compromise. This can be in matters small and petty all the way up to matters of life and death.

The solution to many, if not all conflicts, is to step back: find perspective, see the big picture, do not take one’s self too seriously, and act in what is truly the best interest of us all. These are words but, for each of us, in our own lives, they can become acts of peace, love and understanding.

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Filed under Essays, History, Holidays

DALE AND THOMAS POPCORN: The Go To Gourmet Snack for Geeks

Comics Grinder is a place for all things fitting into a geek lifestyle and beyond. To that end, let’s talk snacks. Whatever your pop culture preference, there’s always room for some kind of treat while you’re reading, gaming, watching. As we kick into holiday season, consider  your snack search to have struck gold with all the amazing goodies to be found at Dale and Thomas Popcorn. An impressive gift box, decked out in a Halloween theme, arrived at Comics Grinder headquarters to my utter joy and amazement. I immediately ripped open a bag marked, “Parmesan & Garlic Cheese Sticks.” Now, these things are not popcorn at all so I was a little confused but they were so delicious that I didn’t care. I could see myself enjoying these with a movie anytime.

Next, I went for “Hall of Fame Kettle Corn,” assuming this would be closer to a popcorn product and I was correct! Yes! These bad boys are quite tasty. I’d rank them up there with the best kettle corn. On the Dale and Thomas Popcorn Web site, they have a quote from the Today Show: “The Rolls Royce of Popcorn.” That’s a nice quote. And, I had to say right then, that I was very much in a holiday mood and found myself feeling a bit pampered.

Here’s where it gets interesting. I have to put my foot down and say that, by and large, my favorite of the whole “Spooktacular Halloween Gift Box” extravaganza was stuff with chocolate. There were two items that fell into this category. The first one: “Twice-As-Nice Chocolate DrizzleCorn.” That’s right, they chose to run the words “drizzle” and “corn” together to create the trademarked “DrizzleCorn.” Anyway, I was feeling the luxury all the more with that. It’s a nice blend of salty and sweet. Next up in the chocolate category is actually the one item that left me breathless: “Milk Chocolate Popsters.” Yes, indeed, they’re called “Popsters” and why not? That name says it all. Of all the chocolate covered delicacies out there, including strawberries, I believe that this caramel coated popcorn dipped in chocolate is an utter inspiration. Seriously, I highly recommend them. I don’t think  you can order them separately but they’re part of some rather tantalizing gift packages available at the Dale and Thomas Popcorn Web site.

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Filed under Dale and Thomas Popcorn, Food, Holidays, Lifestyle, Snacks