The Quest For Monday! Part 61: Down A Dark Hall

(Post title reference here)

(Episode: “The Dreadful Doll”)

Synopsis: The Quests are diverted from marine biology,  first by the appearance of a spy sub, then by villagers with a voodoo problem. The voodoo is a smokescreen…er, zombie-drug-screen…to hide the construction of an undersea base, and the situation escalates faster than you can say “Wade Davis.” Highlights of this episode include turbanless Hadji and Bannon beefcake, because the dreadful doll is a doggone distraction.

Welcome back, campers! We all needed a break after fighting that giant turkey, no doubt. (Note to self: do not accept holiday food gifts from Dr. Zin.) Let’s check in with the Quest clan from a rather academic point of view.

Tip 61: Knowledge can be applicable in, shall we say, all sorts of places.

In the director’s commentary to his horror classic The Fall of the House of Usher, Roger Corman goes on at enthusiastic lengths about the Freudian symbolism of the burial chamber.

What does that have to do with the price of voodoo in Questland, you ask?

I’m just going to leave this here. (Technically, seventh grade still counts as “academic.”)

Fortunately, such profound psychological pondering doesn’t get in the way of a daring Quest rescue, followed by an explosion.

“Did we just hear a secret-sub-base-shattering kaboom?”

So it all works out in the… *immature giggle*

 

Next time: I come up with a Friday category for “Thing I got from Netflix thinking I was getting another thing, then watched it anyway.”

 

Next time on TQfM!: We start an episode titled “A Small Matter of Pygmies.” This is not my fault.

 

 

 

The Quest For Monday! Part 60: The Hunt For Just Some Goober

(Episode: “The Dreadful Doll”)

Synopsis: The Quests are diverted from marine biology,  first by the appearance of a spy sub, then by villagers with a voodoo problem. The voodoo is a smokescreen…er, zombie-drug-screen…to hide the construction of an undersea base, and the situation escalates faster than you can say “Wade Davis.” Highlights of this episode include turbanless Hadji and Bannon beefcake, because the dreadful doll is a doggone distraction.

Tip 60: There are subs, and then there are subs.

Always be clear what you mean, campers: This “sub,” for example, is a secret evil construction project built under cover of voodoo.

 

Call it the Blue November.

Meanwhile, the voodoo guy himself is called upon as a sub: a substitute for a decent guard.

Poor guy. At least Barney Fife got pants.

Clarity (with no small help from any children who may come to your aid in time of need) will see you through.

 

Next time: To hell with “based on a true story”; Night of the Demon is based on a good story, and I’ve finally watched it!

Next time on TQfM!: Another rescue, the ghost of Sigmund Freud has a laugh, and the episode ends.

The Quest For Monday! Part 59: Unity And Variety

(Episode: “The Dreadful Doll”)

Synopsis: The Quests are diverted from marine biology,  first by the appearance of a spy sub, then by villagers with a voodoo problem. The voodoo is a smokescreen…er, zombie-drug-screen…to hide the construction of an undersea base, and the situation escalates faster than you can say “Wade Davis.” Highlights of this episode include turbanless Hadji and Bannon beefcake, because the dreadful doll is a doggone distraction.

Tip 59: It’s hard to look at a familiar problem with fresh eyes.

When you’ve recently waltzed around a secret nerve-gas factory, etc.,  it can be easy to forget that sometimes infiltrations don’t go so well.

Being reminded doesn’t seem great, either.

Instead, look for ways to liven up ordinary tasks and keep them exciting.

For example, Korbay the would-be voodoo priest lifehacked (sorry) this skull into a two-way radio.

 

Next time: I’m going to take a run at finishing my long-neglected post on The Conjuring.

Next time on TQfM!: Rescue.

The Quest For Monday! Part 57: The Right Tool For The Right Job

(Episode: “The Dreadful Doll”)

Synopsis: The Quests are diverted from fun fish-identifying business: first by the appearance of a spy sub, then by villagers with a voodoo problem. The voodoo is a smokescreen…er, zombie-drug-screen…to hide the construction of an undersea base, and the situation escalates faster than you can say “Wade Davis.” Highlights of this episode include turbanless Hadji and Bannon beefcake, because the dreadful doll is a doggone distraction.

 

Tip 57: Sometimes old movie quotes say it all.

You know how to make it seem like you can turn people into zombies via magic, don’t you?

It’s true: you just put your lips together and blow.

 

Next time: I wish I knew…

Next time on TQfM!: We finally see the darned doll.

The Quest For Monday! Part 56: Putting The “Ick” In Ichthyology

(Episode: “The Dreadful Doll”)

Synopsis: The Quests are diverted from fun fish-identifying business: first by the appearance of a spy sub, then by villagers with a voodoo problem. The voodoo is a smokescreen…er, zombie-drug-screen…to hide the construction of an undersea base, and the situation escalates faster than you can say “Wade Davis.” Highlights of this episode include turbanless Hadji and Bannon beefcake, because the dreadful doll is a doggone distraction.

Only a spot of voodoo could interrupt Team Quest’s oceanic idyll… apparently.

Tip 56: It’s good to love your work, but maybe not too much.

Especially if your work shows signs of loving you back.
And the family’s not even that surprised.

 

Next time: Christopher Lee in a movie I haven’t seen since the days of TBS’s Five Film Fang Fest, which is to say a hell of a long time.

Next time on TQfM!:  Becoming a voodoo master the easy way.

The Quest For Monday! Part 55: Scuba-Dooby-Doo!

(Episode: “Skull and Double Crossbones”)

Synopsis: The Quests are back on their home turf—the surf. What should be enviable underwater fun and education is ruined when Jonny finds a treasure and Team Quest is set upon by some very lazy pirates. Also, Bandit learns to dive.

(OOC Author Note: Even before my time got compromised late last year, I struggled with this one because it’s everything I ever wanted out of a Jonny Quest episode as a kid: sea creatures, showy-but-plausible science, and a swashbuckling plot. That makes it a little bland for Benton Quest Field Guide purposes, so I think I’m just going to wrap it up today.)

When your life is on the line, even from the laziest of sources, and you need to summon help…

…such as when confronted by pirates who are averse to standing up for long periods of time, but who could still shoot you.

Tip 55: Sometimes the weird thing to do is the right thing to do.

Bandit’s reporting trouble above the water. He’s kind of an inverse Lassie.

 

Next time: I’m letting someone else decide Friday’s movie, so it’ll either be really silly or the Hammer (film) will drop…which doesn’t actually preclude the silly.

Next time on TQfM!: “The Dreadful Doll” looks like the TV equivalent of movie voodoo, only in the Questverse. This has the potential to be excruciating. I can’t wait.

 

 

Belated Found-Again Friday: Putting The Chris Sarandon In Christmas With The Resurrected (1991)

Why Found-Again? It’s only been a year or so since I watched this one, so it really never left. One thing about the fictional character Charles Dexter Ward: he gets portrayed by some very good-looking guys.

The Premise:  Wealthy, slightly dorky chemist Charles Dexter Ward (Sarandon) gets progressively weirder about his secret experiments, eventually leaving his wife Claire (Jane Sibbett) in the middle of a party. With the help of a mysterious associate, Charles takes his studies to a rural cottage, but things take a dark turn after a neighbor complains and human remains are discovered. More confused than ever, Claire hires private investigator John March, who soon realizes Charles has been replaced by his wizard ancestor and that people and things are being—surprise!—resurrected.

They’re pretty bloody and sticky about it, too.

The cast is very good: I’m both old enough and weird enough to geek out seeing Jane Sibbett in this movie because I loved her in an old Fox Network show called Herman’s Headof which I may have been the only loyal viewer.

She more than holds her own in a role original to the movie, as does John Terry as the PI who would really like not to believe in necromancy. But of course, it’s Sarandon who steals the show in his dual role as Ward and his revivified ancestor Joseph Curwen. (Curwen subsists on red meat and scenery, and I’m not complaining at all.)

A decidedly non-chronological before…
…and ancestor after.

The Verdict: The Resurrected is a modernized, noir-ified version of the classic Lovecraft story, but the bones of the plot are largely the same: man dabbles in genealogy, discovers lookalike ancestor, dabbles in the occult, recovers lookalike ancestor, and lives to regret it but not much longer. The movie suffers from some of the common complaints of horror films—the effects can be a little goofy, the detective plot sometimes sits awkwardly over the source material, and I personally despise the set design for the PI’s office to an incredible degree—but it does a very good job as an adaptation, especially in the last half.

The mystery is compelling (assuming you haven’t read the story…or indeed this review), the villain is scary, and the creatures are downright chilling. This is probably the goriest thing in my DVD collection, and I regret nothing except the few seconds of eyeball violence.

Might go well with: The Haunted Palace, any of the other movies I’ve covered this month, and any vegetarian recipes you might have lying around.

 

Next time: We go from doubles to dubloons.

 

The Quest for Monday! Part 53: Shell Games

(Episode: “Skull and Double Crossbones”)

Synopsis: The Quests are back on their home turf—the surf. What should be an episode of enviable underwater fun and education is ruined when Jonny finds a treasure and Team Quest is set upon by some very lazy pirates. Also, Bandit learns to dive.

Tip 53: Competition can be healthy.

Bandit’s found a ringer for this race.

 

I kept trying to make a caption for this one that went “Tweenage [something] Surfing Turtles.”
But you shouldn’t let the desire to win warp your character.

Kids’ TV, folks.

 

Next time: I’m upping the “ew” factor and watching another Lovecraft adaptation with The Resurrected. People, never raise your lookalike ancestors from the dead if you can help it.

Next time on TQfM!: Treasure no-land.

The Quest For Monday! Part 52: A Place In The Sunfish

(Episode: “Skull and Double Crossbones”)

Synopsis: The Quests are back on their home turf—the surf. What should be an episode of enviable underwater fun and education is ruined when Jonny finds a treasure and Team Quest is set upon by some very lazy pirates. Also, Bandit learns to dive.

Tip 52: The movie was right: things do get better down where it’s wetter!

That’s if you can breathe, of course.
Science! I’m assuming…
Have I mentioned my parents hated the water when I was growing up? Yes, I’m jealous of Jonny Quest.

Will this idyll last? Like hell it will.

 

Next time: The Christmas theme month continues with Child’s Play. I don’t think I’ve watched it since I was 17, so this should be interesting.

Next time on TQfM!: The idyll in fact lasts for one more Monday post.

 

The Quest For Monday! Part 51: The Birdstrike(s Back?)

(Episode: “Shadow of the Condor”)

Synopsis: You know those horror movies with people stranded at the house of a madman and forced to compete in strange ways for survival? Well, here’s the Quest version:  Race Bannon is in the sights of Snoopy’s old foe, a WWI flying ace, and Bandit is in the sights of a horrific owl-eating condor. Not a Peanuts/JQ crossover, sadly, but there is a dachshund named Wili.

Even when you’re a fading imperialist unnaturally obsessed with your old war record, sometimes things just go right. A worthy opponent shows up, and you can pop him into an unarmed plane and some fetching leather togs and make one last shot at dogfighting glory faster than you can say “Where the heck is my lucky dachshund?” (only auf Deutsch). Things are looking decidedly…up?…but

Tip 51: Karma is indeed a bitch, or in this case a large raptor.

Live by the condor, maybe don't shoot at the condor, okay?
Live by the condor, maybe don’t shoot at the condor, okay?
Race has been trying to do that for almost five minutes of screentime art this point. Another win for mother nature.
Race has been trying to accomplish this for almost five minutes of screen time at this point. Another win for mother nature.

All’s well that ends in a fiery but deserved plane crash.

 

Next time: I love my readers so much I rewatched Bordello of Blood.

Next time on TQfM!: New episode! “Skull and Double Crossbones” will get the Quests back to the ocean, and just in time for pirates.