A Pleasant Surprise

So I’m off work today—sick. The inaugural yes-it’s-spring-so-now-your-allergies-will-kick-your-ass fun fest. So I took a day to get it under control.

I’m crashed out on the couch, drinking tea and general trying to get some rest. I turn on the tube, and catch the opening credits of a movie starting on FLIX, one of the movie channels I get via satellite. It’s a Vincent Price movie—one of those Roger Corman-directed early-60s gothic horror B-movies that took their title (and little else) from Edgar Allen Poe stories. (Stephen King was a big fan of these, and in his book On Writing said that he and his friend referred to them as “Poepictures”) This was one I hadn’t seen before: “The Haunted Palace”…the title cribbed from one of Poe’s poems.

So, as I’m watching, I start catching references in the dialogue: the town is called “Arkham”. Price’s character is named Charles Ward. Charles DEXTER Ward. As soon as it begins to dawn on me, the floodgates open, and the references come heavily, one after another: The Necronomicon. Cthulhu and Yog-sothoth. Tillinghast.

It’s a Lovecraft movie, as well as a Poepicture! Woo-hoo! The day suddenly gets just a little bit better.

I love little surprises like that.


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