Wednesday, October 11, 2017


One month to go till this year's NovKon, and yes! 
New releases!

Issue 4 (of 4)
By David Hontiveros and Romnick Magbanua

Our heroes’ grueling encounter with the savage Yokusuru wraps up here, with a colored cover by Kadasig co-creator, Ian Sta. Maria.

DAKILA: Makadaot
Issue 3 (of 3)
By David Hontiveros and Carl Corilla

Your name is Brandon Ramirez and you’ve been a geek your whole life: comics, movies, RPGs, cosplay.

And now you’re officially the world’s first superhero, as evidenced by the cape, the mask, the totally ripped physique, and those crazy-awesome powers.

Higher agencies seem to have conspired to steer you right into that skintight outfit.

We have only one question:
How’s that working out for you?

The Makadaot arc wraps up here, as we see exactly what Kasuko’s “sweet itsusiak deal” was all about.

Dakila. 18 years old. Cosmic champion.
All of a sudden, acne and getting a driver’s license are so not a big deal anymore.

To help celebrate the 25th anniversary of Reno Maniquis’ Maskarado…

Silver Like Dust
By David Hontiveros and Reno Maniquis

Two kick-ass heroes.
One awesome team-up.

Dakila finds himself in another dimension, in another Philippines, where he meets “Manila’s Masked Marvel,” Maskarado.
Together, the heroes face an enemy driven by madness and greed.
An enemy who hungers for all the power in the world.
Including theirs.

(See the complete sneak preview pack--including 2 lettered pages--at the Maskarado FBpage, here.)

And there you go.
Set the dates: November 11 & 12, at the Bayanihan Center on Pioneer.

Hope to see all you mighty fine folk at NovKon!

you can’t drink just six,


Tuesday, October 3, 2017

A Rundown of the 13 Best Horror Movies I've Seen in the Past Year
[13 of 13]

(April 2017)

Writer/director Trey Edward Shults' second feature film, It Comes at Night, sets us down in the middle of yet another post-apocalyptic scenario. To the film’s benefit, the narrative doesn’t play out as per your usual post-apocalypse de rigueur.
We don’t witness the catastrophe that triggers the collapse (and specific details are never really offered). All we really know is the unfortunate can become sick, and when that happens, drastic measures need to be taken.
Instead, the story’s focus is Paul (Joel Edgerton, also the film’s Executive Producer) and his family (wife, teen-aged son, and father-in-law’s dog, Stanley) living far away from the city.

Shults tells his story at a very slow and deliberate pace, and some may even wonder if this is actually a “horror movie.”
Since it’s found a comfortable home on the ¡Q Horror! 2017 rundown, it’s safe to assume I believe it qualifies. Because, while the journey is a slow, low-key one, the ultimate destination is a harrowingly brutal gut punch, the horror, the kind that underscores the tragic hollowness of that most banal and grotesque of platitudes uttered in the face of mind-numbing, soul-crushing disaster: “Everything’s gonna be okay.”

Parting Shot:
And so there we are.
Another October, another ¡Q Horror! rundown.
If you're in the mood for a horror movie marathon to celebrate the season, try and check this year's titles out (if you haven't already).
Here's to a Happy (and safe) Halloween for all of us!

(It Comes at Night OS’ courtesy of &

A Rundown of the 13 Best Horror Movies I've Seen in the Past Year
[12 of 13]

(January 2017)

"Fairer skin has been in favor for the past, what, couple of hundreds of years? But now the pendulum has swung back.
"Black is in fashion.”

Anyone who’s passingly familiar with my writing or has been to the Iguana more than once would, in all likelihood, have noticed my preference for genre pieces that have something to say.
That’s the kind of genre material I’m deeply interested in, the ones that use the tropes and the conventions and the form as a platform to delve into important, vital matters. The kind of material that says something to its audience about the world they live in.
And if you’ve seen the trailer for Jordan Peele’s feature directorial debut, Get Out (which Peele also wrote the screenplay for), it should be fairly obvious that the film is about race, and its ugly, bigoted offspring, racism.

“Chris, you gotta get the f*ck up outta there, man! You in some Eyes Wide Shut situation. Leave, motherfu--”

The Fades’ and Black Mirror’s Daniel Kaluuya plays Chris Washington, who is being introduced to--and spending the weekend with--his girlfriend’s parents (played by the always marvelous Catherine Keener and a vaguely unrecognizable Bradley Whitford).
And when that happens in a Blumhouse film, you just know things are gonna get ug-leeee…

To say anything more is not really my style here at the Iguana; it would also be a frank disservice to the extraordinary piece Peele and company have brought to the screen.
Suffice it to say that if you, like me, have a taste for horror with a brain, then Get Out.

“I mean, I told you not to go in that house…”

Parting Shot:
For those who know Jordan Peele as half of the comedy sketch duo Key & Peele, note that at the age of 13, he knew he wanted to be a horror film director.
Apparently, the whole comedy thing was a huge detour, but he’s managed to find his way back to the dream.
A few more things to look forward to from Peele:

The 4 other “social thrillers” (his term) that he plans to work on, of which he has this to say: “The best and scariest monsters in the world are human beings and what we are capable of especially when we get together. I’ve been working on these premises about these different social demons, these innately human monsters that are woven into the fabric of how we think and how we interact, and each one of my movies is going to be about a different one of these social demons.”

He’s also teamed up with J.J. Abrams’ Bad Robot to adapt Matt Ruff’s Lovecraft Country for HBO (it’s been given a straight-to-series order). has this to say about Lovecraft Country[Ruff] makes visceral the terrors of life in Jim Crow America and its lingering effects in this brilliant and wondrous work of the imagination that melds historical fiction, pulp noir, and Lovecraftian horror and fantasy.

Yes, please. Some more of that…

(Get Out OS courtesy of

A Rundown of the 13 Best Horror Movies I've Seen in the Past Year
[11 of 13]

(October 2016)

There's something to be said for well-crafted traditional horror cinema and Mike Flanagan’s Ouija: Origin of Evil, is certainly that.

A prequel to Stiles White’s Ouija--the 2014 film based on the Hasbro game (which I never got to watch)--Origin of Evil follows the Zander women, mother Alice (Elizabeth Reaser), her high school daughter Lina (Annalise Basso, who also featured in Flanagan’s Oculus), and 9-year-old Doris (Lulu Wilson), as they try and get by in Los Angeles, 1967, after the loss of their husband and father.
Alice’s business name is “Madame Zander,” and she and her daughters perform a community service by giving their clients closure through faux séances, or at least, that’s what Alice tells herself and her children.
Things go awry of course (because let’s face it, they have to, given that this is a horror movie) when Alice purchases a (gasp!) Ouija board.
The premise sounds dopey as hell, but Flanagan and co-writer Jeff Howard (who also tag teamed on the screenplays for Flanagan’s Oculus and Before I Wake) wring it for all the creeptasticness they can muster.

Parting Shot:
Oh, and look! Doug Jones and Elliott, errr, I mean Henry Thomas, are in it too!

(Ouija: Origin of Evil OS courtesy of

Sunday, October 1, 2017

A Rundown of the 13 Best Horror Movies I've Seen in the Past Year
[10 of 13]

(October 2016)

Right out of the gate, writer/director Bryan Bertino carved out a slot for himself on the 2008 ¡Q horror! rundown with his feature debut, The Strangers.
Though circumstances have thus far prevented me from checking out his 2014 follow-up, Mockingbird, he is back ‘round these parts with The Monster.

As with The Strangers, Bertino balances character with the tense thrills produced by a horrific set-up; in this case, it’s a mother and daughter stranded on a lonely road, at night, in the rain, with the titular (and savagely hungry) beast lurking in the woods.

There are strong performances here from Zoe Kazan and Ella Ballentine, and Chief Tyrol himself, BSG’s Aaron Douglas, also shows up for the fun.
If you’re in the mood for some suspenseful and moving horror, then hunt down The Monster.

(The Monster OS courtesy of

A Rundown of the 13 Best Horror Movies I've Seen in the Past Year
[9 of 13]
The TV Horror Slot

The second tie of the year...

(September 2016)

After the terribly disappointing Damien--the A&E TV take on The Omen--I honestly didn’t have high hopes for Fox’s The Exorcist.

Let’s face it, The Exorcist is a much more towering presence in horror cinema than The Omen, so it stood to reason that a television version of it would have a much higher degree of difficulty.
But wouldn’t you know it, Jeremy Slater (who developed The Exorcist for the small screen) actually pulled an infernally feisty rabbit out of this particular hat, and gave us another notable reason to celebrate TV horror.

Not much more I can say without getting all spoiler-y, except maybe this: there are a whole bunch of callbacks to the original film peppered throughout the first season’s 10 episodes (you’ll know them when you see them), and there’s one apparently incredulous Mulder Moment courtesy of Geena Davis’ Angela Rance in the Pilot, my suggestion for which is, “Just roll with it.”

So, yeah.
If you’re in the mood for some excellent TV horror, then the power of Christ compels you to check this out!

(October 2016)

"Do 'ya sense it?
"Something is coming.
"A strange vessel headed for the cove…”

What do you get when you take alumni from Twin Peaks (Harley Peyton) and Hannibal (Nick Antosca), and the son of noted director John Landis (Max), toss them into a wild, creatively horrific blender, then sprinkle the goo that’s left onto a heap of steaming Creepypasta?
You get the highly unsettling Channel Zero: Candle Cove.

This is the kind of TV horror we desperately need, the kind that never forgets that horror isn’t just about jump scares and on-screen gore; that it’s also about tone and atmosphere.
Craig William Macneill (who directed all six episodes) certainly understands this, and now, based on what I saw on Candle Cove, I feel the need to check out his feature, The Boy (the one with David Morse and Rainn Wilson).

This is the first time the post-BSG SyFy has come up with a winner of this caliber. (The fact that Channel Zero isn’t even science fiction, but a horror anthology,  is another conversation entirely.)
So looking forward to Season 2, based on “The No-End House.”

“A fire needs fuel.
“Power demands sacrifice.
“I made mine a long time ago.”

Parting Shot:
Both series have kicked off their sophomore seasons very promisingly.
With any luck, we'll see those seasons in next year's rundown...

(The Exorcist OS’ courtesy of and; Channel Zero OS courtesy of

A Rundown of the 13 Best Horror Movies I've Seen in the Past Year
[8 of 13]

(September 2016)

"You'd be surprised at the things you find when you go looking.”

Co-written and co-directed by Jeremy Gillespie and Steven Kostanski (art and make-up veterans on the sorely missed Hannibal, among other things), The Void is the kind of horror film that does not f*ck around.

As per this excerpt from the synopsis on the film’s Indiegogo page (more on that later), In the middle of a routine patrol, officer Daniel Carter happens upon a blood-soaked figure limping down a deserted stretch of road. He rushes the young man to a nearby rural hospital staffed by a skeleton crew, only to discover that…
Dot dot dot indeed.

“… [T]he body has to adjust, of course. Adapt. We weren’t… built for this kind of thing.”

Suffice it to say that experiencing The Void is like having rotting, putrid gobbets of Carpenter, Fulci, and Cronenberg (along with some stringy bits of Lovecraft) flung right in your face… in the best possible way.
There’s plenty of dread and gruesome practical effects (to which the Indiegogo funds went), and if you’re in the mood for some disturbing cosmic horror, you’d be well advised to step right up and into The Void.

“I defy God. There are things much older. Older than time. And they blessed me.”

(The Void OS’ courtesy of

A Rundown of the 13 Best Horror Movies I've Seen in the Past Year
[7 of 13]

(September 2016)

"I have heard myself say that a house with a death in it can never again be bought or sold by the living.
"It can only be borrowed from the ghosts that have stayed behind.”

After carving out an entire slot for himself in the ¡Q horror! 2016 rundown--for co-writing the screenplay of The Girl in the Photographs, and for his feature debut, The Blackcoat’s Daughter--Osgood Perkins is back, with his sophomore effort, I Am the Pretty Thing That Lives in the House.

Here, we see 28-year-old hospice nurse Lily Saylor (Ruth Wilson), move in with the elderly Iris Blum (Paula Prentiss), a writer of horror novels (“… [t]he kinds of thick, frightening books that people buy at airports and supermarkets,” Lily observes).
Novels with titles like The Dark Moon Flower, Underwater Housewife, She Wore Her Hair Around Her Neck, and--of particular interest to the film’s plot--The Lady in the Walls.
True to ¡Q horror! form, things do not go well.
At all.

Nothing more need be said, save that I Am the Pretty Thing… is the kind of horror film that advances with a languid, stealthy tread, trailing its horror behind it in a train of rotting lace.
If you enjoy the exquisite, lingering dread of slow burn horror, then you definitely need to check this one out…

“… [b]ut left alone, with only your own eyes looking back at you… and even the prettiest things rot.
“You fall apart like flowers…”

Parting Shot 1:
It’s interesting to note that there’s another prominent ghost in this film: Osgood’s father, the one and only Anthony Perkins.
From the prominent use of “You Keep Coming Back Like A Song” (by Tony Perkins with Urbie Green and His Orchestra, contained in From My Heart from 1958), to a scene from 1956’s Friendly Persuasion (for which Perkins was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor), to the film’s dedication (“for A.P.” which I can only assume stands for “Anthony Perkins”), the late Perkins’ presence is very much felt in I Am the Pretty Thing

Parting Shot 2:
There also another Perkins with a prominent role here as well, Osgood’s brother, Elvis, who provides the film’s soundtrack, as he did on The Blackcoat’s Daughter.

(I Am the Pretty Thing That Lives in the House OS courtesy of

A Rundown of the 13 Best Horror Movies I've Seen in the Past Year
[6 of 13]

(September 2016)

"Mommy told me something a little girl should know.
It’s all about the Devil and I’ve learned to hate him so.
She said he causes trouble when you let him in the room.
He will never ever leave you if your heart is filled with gloom.”
--“Open Up Your Heart”

The body of an unidentified young woman found under strange circumstances is brought in to the Tilden Morgue & Crematorium, where father and son Tildens, Tommy (Brian Cox) and Austin (Emile Hirsch) set about to uncover cause of death.
But this is far from a cut and dried post mortem, as the Tildens soon discover…

The Autopsy of Jane Doe is a rousing “Welcome Back!” for director André Øvredal (who was last seen ‘round these parts in the 2011 ¡Q horror! rundown, with Trolljegeren).
This time though, there are no amusing, humorous chuckles to be had. This is dark and disturbing stuff, courtesy of a script by Ian Goldberg and Richard Naing, which is, honestly, a welcome surprise.
Familiar with some of Goldberg’s work on Once Upon a Time and Dead of Summer (for which Naing also wrote an episode), I hadn’t expected him capable of horror of this grimness. I’m glad to be divested of that impression.

So effective is the film that no less than Guillermo del Toro (“A fun, stylish, beautifully built funhouse of horror!”) and Stephen King (“Visceral horror to rival ALIEN and early Cronenberg. Watch it, but not alone.”) have sung its praises.
¡Q horror! can do naught but agree…

“Whatever the hell happened in here… we are way past possible.”

(The Autopsy of Jane Doe OS’ courtesy of &

A Rundown of the 13 Best Horror Movies I've Seen in the Past Year
[5 of 13]

(July 2016)

"This is a serious undertakin'. It's not fuckin’ astral projection or runes. This is real stuff we’re playin’ with.
“Real angels, real demons.”

Writer/director Liam Gavin’s feature debut, A Dark Song, is a vastly impressive piece that sees Sophia (Dark Touch’s Catherine Walker) hire Joseph Solomon (Steve Oram from TV’s Glue and The Living and the Dead) to help her with a heavy-duty occult ritual.
Isolated along with the pair in a house in the Welsh countryside, we watch as they gradually move through the varying stages of the ritual, moving inexorably towards its culmination.

“Science describes the least of things. The least of what something is.
“Religion, magick… bows to the endless in everything. The mystery.”

This isn’t some Dr. Strange fancy-hand-gestures-with-spinning-CGI-sparklers-as-background magic, mind.
This is the exacting, torturous world of ritual magick we’ve stepped into, where tiny and seemingly innocuous signs are meant to be interpreted as supernatural portents of massive weight and undeniable gravity, manifestations of the divine (or the infernal).
A world where everything comes at a steep price.
And Gavin places us right in the middle of this occult crucible, compelled to watch as Sophia suffers the rite’s rigors, as she burns with the righteous flame of her personal desire.

“This is the price of our rage. Embrace it, don’t fear it. It’s you and it’s me.
“Poor us.”

(A Dark Song OS’ courtesy of &