Comments on a cultural reality between past and future.

This blog describes Metatime in the Posthuman experience, drawn from Sir Isaac Newton's secret work on the future end of times, a tract in which he described Histories of Things to Come. His hidden papers on the occult were auctioned to two private buyers in 1936 at Sotheby's, but were not available for public research until the 1990s.

Friday, November 22, 2013

Anniversaries ... and a Royal Horrorshow

Image Source: Thomas Kluge / Danish Royal Family Collection via Yahoo.

Thoughts go out today to all who are marking the grim 50th anniversary of the assassination of JFK and those celebrating the happy 50th anniversary of the time-traveling TV series, Doctor Who (including Google!). What also caught my eye was this Flowers in the Attic-retro-styled portrait of the Danish royal family by Gen X Danish artist Thomas Kluge. From Yahoo:
A new portrait of the Danish royal family has been unveiled, and critics are saying something's rotten in Denmark. The painting, which depicts the group in a shadowy hall against a classical backdrop, is currently being displayed in Copenhagen's Amalienborg Museum. It took Danish artist Thomas Kluge four years to complete, though it may haunt him though the afterlife.

The work is being described by some as more Addams Family than royal family. Only three of the subjects make eye contact with the viewers, Queen Margrethe II, her son and heir apparent, Crown Prince Frederik, and his son, Prince Christian. The little boy, lit eerily from behind, is standing alone, front and center, while the other children play. He carries the weight of his duties-or is that the thoughts of his sinister deeds?-on his shoulders. To his left, his evil twin-like cousins build a blood-red tower, and to his right, slouched in an inky black corner, sits his little sister, Princess Isabella, blueish-lipped and hunched over a rag doll. She resembles none other than a six-year-old ... [Heather O'Rourke] cowering in the flickering light of a TV screen, seconds before her first run-in with a poltergeist.

The painting will "steal your soul," writes Fast Company and also claims it looks "Satanic" and "creepy" and describes the royal brood as "Damien-like progeny." The Daily Mail says it resembles a poster for a scary movie, and the gathering does have the feel of a season one American Horror Story reunion.

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Generation X Goes Back to the Future 12: Danny Torrance Grows Up

From Kubrick's The Shining (1980) © Warner Bros. Image Source: Feel Guide.

It's strange, being a near-exact contemporary of a famous fictional character. The five-year-old child, Danny Torrance, in Stephen King's 1977 horror novel, The Shining, and depicted in Stanley Kubrick's immortal 1980 film of the same name, grew up this fall. King's sequel, Doctor Sleep, depicts Dan Torrance as an adult. The book debuted on 24 September 2013, and immediately became a best-seller.

Shelley Duvall as Wendy with Danny Lloyd as Danny Torrance in The Shining. In this scene, Danny Torrance wears an Apollo sweater which fueled Illuminati conspiracy theories that director Kubrick had participated in a moon landing media hoax. Image Source: Warner Bros. via NY Daily News.

I just finished reading The Shining and Doctor Sleep. I was struck by Dan Torrance, a character whose cultural world was almost exactly contemporary to my own Gen X experience; and I was impressed by how Stephen King made him grow up. The first book is pure 1970s. And, as several characters in its sequel state, 'we're in the twenty-first century now.'

Artwork for Doctor Sleep. by Glenn Chadbourne. Image Source: The Overlook Connection.

King states in the afterword of Doctor Sleep that he changed a great deal in the thirty odd years between writing these two novels; he is also preoccupied with how his characters change, and how the world changed in that time. This is horror for the new Millennium.

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Curios: Upcoming Hollywood Memorabilia Auction

Up at auction: the 1940 Buick Phaeton automobile from Casablanca (1942).

An amazing array of Hollywood props, scripts and other memorabilia is going up for auction at Bonham's in New York City on the 25th of November, 2013 at 1 p.m. Eastern - from the Maltese Falcon prop, to wafers of Soylent Green, to Michelle Pfeiffer's Catwoman suit and Michael Keaton's Batman suit. And Bonham's have storyboards from Raiders of the Lost Ark.

Soylent Green! The original prop.

They have signed contracts, countless costumes (some are breathtaking, have incredible craftsmanship, or are sci-fi classics) and posters, and they have Francis Ford Coppola's working script (here) from The Godfather (1972). They have a script from Citizen Kane (1941). And Marilyn Monroe's high school yearbook.

All film genres, classics from all decades. See the auction house's Website here. You can bid online.

The iconic lead statuette of the Maltese Falcon from the 1941 film of the same name.

Monday, November 18, 2013

Plutonium at the Bay of Rainbows

The Bay of Rainbows (Sinus Iridum). Image Source: NASA via Space.com.

Next month, China will launch an unmanned lander mission to the moon, which, if successful, will be the first non-crash landing on the moon since Apollo 17's 1972-1973 manned mission and Russia's unmanned Luna missions from the mid-1970s. Although the International Space Station has contributed invaluably to our knowledge of how to live in outer space, there is a sense now (not least with mythical movies like Apollo 18 - see my posts on that film, here and here) America got sidetracked when she abandoned the moon. Of course that myopic view also excludes NASA's great accomplishments in the exploration of Mars over the past twenty years.
Apollo 17 mission insignia. Image Source: Wiki.

Nevertheless, it was an American flag that was first planted on the moon during the Apollo 11 mission in 1969. Apollo 17 was also the most recent, and sixth, manned mission to the moon. For all Russia's contributions, humans had walked on the moon, and the moon was American! For over a generation, that claim has rested on laurels which lay neglected and undisturbed.