Halloween, Halloween, Halloweeeeeeeeen!
Episode 22 Show Notes
We are still battle through the horror that is Villains Month, and this week is no exception. We wanted to take a look at Halloween in unique way by examining the 18th Century (plus or minus) myths, monsters, and Legends! These are the stories that made living in early America truly terrifying and they deserve to be brought into the light. All of that and more but first, the News from around the Nerd.
News From Around the Nerd
The Good News
The Good News
Remember when you were a kid and would make an all out war between all of your toys? Optimus Prime would battle Shredder, The Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles would challenge the Decpticons and Snake eyes would destroy anyone who got in his way! Those were the days, and comic publisher IDW wants to bring them back. In a company wide crossover IDW will bring all of their properties together for a series of epic awesomeness! At least we hope so. It is all playing out in the series X-Files: Conspiracy and hopefully will bring back the glory we all remember!
If you never played that way as a kid, watch this video to know what I am talking about:
Star Wars is awesome! This is a universal law despite things that have happened to it (cough, cough Jar Jar Binks). To see for yourself just how awesome it is you really need to go check out Star Wars: Where Science Meets Imagination. I am not going to say too much because Bless got over to the exhibit and has a great write up on it coming to the blog. All I need to say is this, GET THERE NOW IF YOU CAN!!!
We have said it before and we will keep on saying it, We Love Archer! This is one of the smartest shows on TV and it is consistently hilarious. If you haven’t seen the show I question your reasons for living! That might be a little dramatic, but you really need to watch it. It is on Netflix so you have no excuses! For the rest of us who love Archer and are waiting for the new season to start you can get you fill until then by going to Archer Live! This will basically be a Comic Con panel brought to you! They will have the cast talking about the show, reenacting favorite scenes and taking questions from the audience. This promises to be epic! If you can make it you should, but tickets are going fast!
The Bad News
As a parent myself, heaven forbid I tell another parent how to do their job. However to the mom in Albuquerque, New Mexico; STOP COMPLAINING THAT THE SCHOOL SYSTEM ISN’T RAISING YOUR KIDS RIGHT AND DO IT YOURSELF! This mother was upset about a book that she felt was too mature. Clearly this mother has never read most of her kids reading list because when I was in High School most of our books dealt with Mature themes. It is called growing up! The worst part of this story is that the book that is temporarily banned is Neil Gaimon’s Neverwhere. This story makes us angry and gave Bless a nasty case of Nerd Rage. Do everyone you know a favor, go out and read this book and then have your friends read the book. It will make us all better people for it.
Okay let’s all calm down for a minute, this next bit of news is just sad. South Park is another one of our favorite shows and the creators are some of the hardest working people in Hollywood today. Their production method allows them to have timely, current topics for their shows when others would take months to get a show out on the same thing. The problem with this is that they are in a very vulnerable position to miss a deadline if something goes wrong. Well that is what happened last week, and after about 20 years of putting out this show, they missed their deadline. Due to a power outage on the day they needed to submit their episode they were unable to submit the episode. This is sad, but it is truly remarkable that in the entire run of the show, this is the first time it has happened. We can’t wait to see the episode this week, and hopefully this won’t happen again!
Finally, we all know that discussions on the internet can be somewhat less than stimulating. With the “potential” announcement of Michael B. Jordan being cast as Johnny Storm in the new Fantastic Four movie we are getting to see a whole new side to this. When people who want to have a open and valid discussion are called racists before the discussion has even begun then we have reached a really dangerous point in our social discourse.
This week we are diving into some of the lesser known myths and monsters of the World. Specifically we are looking at the 18th century myths, monsters, and legends. There is a lot to cover so here we go!
Although no physical evidence of this aquatic creature exists, stories of a large snake-like animal swimming in the waters of Georgia’s Altamaha River date back to the 18th century. The Tama Indian tribe has legends of such a creature, and alleged sightings of Altamaha-ha continue to be reported today, with most reports involving swimmers bumping into the creature. It’s been described as looking like a sturgeon, but having the head of a crocodile, and cryptozoologists have speculated that Altamaha-ha may be an ocean cryptid that spawns in the freshwaters at the mouth of the river.
Jersey Devil (New Jersey)
Since the 1700s, there have been thousands of reported sightings of this cryptid in the New Jersey Pinelands. Described as a kangaroo-like creature with the head of a dog, bat-like wings, horns and a forked tail, the animal is said to prowl through the marshes of Southern New Jersey and spook people with its hideous appearance. Although there are many stories about the creatures origins, the most commonly accepted is that in 1735 there was a woman called Mother Leeds who had 12 children. She stated that if she gave birth to another child, it would be the Devil, and when her 13th child was born, it transformed into the Jersey Devil, killed its mother and flew screaming into the woods. To this day, residents of cities near the Pinelands have reported hearing the devil’s screams late at night. However, skeptics say the creature is nothing more than a story created by English settlers.
Spring-heeled Jack (England)
An entity in English folkloreof the Victorian erawho was known for his startling hops. The first claimed sighting of Spring-heeled Jack was in 1837.Later sightings were reported all over Great Britain and were especially prevalent in suburban London, the Midlandsand Scotland.
There are many theories about the nature and identity of Spring-heeled Jack. This urban legend was very popular in its time, due to the tales of his bizarre appearance and ability to make extraordinary leaps, to the point that he became the topic of several works of fiction.
Spring-heeled Jack was described by people who claimed to have seen him as having a terrifying and frightful appearance, with diabolical physiognomy, clawed hands, and eyes that “resembled red balls of fire”. One report claimed that, beneath a black cloak, he wore a helmet and a tight-fitting white garment like an oilskin. Many stories also mention a “Devil-like” aspect. Others said he was tall and thin, with the appearance of a gentleman. Several reports mention that he could breathe out blue and white flames and that he wore sharp metallic claws at his fingertips. At least two people claimed that he was able to speak comprehensible English.
The Salem witch trials (New England)
The were a series of hearings and prosecutions of people accused of witchcraftin colonial Massachusettsbetween February 1692 and May 1693. Despite being generally known as the Salem witch trials, the preliminary hearings in 1692 were conducted in a variety of towns across the province: Salem Village(now Danvers), Ipswich, Andoverand Salem Town.
The Headless Horseman (New York)
A fictional character from the short story “The Legend of Sleepy Hollow” by American author Washington Irving. The story, from Irving’s collection of short stories entitled The Sketch Book of Geoffrey Crayon, Gent., has worked itself into known American folklore/legend through literature and film.
The legend of the Headless Horseman begins in Sleepy Hollow, New York. The Horseman was a Hessianof unknown rank, one of many hired to suppress the American Revolution. During the war, the Horseman was one of 51 Hessians killed in a battle for Chatterton Hill, wherein his head was severed by an American cannonball. He was buried in a graveyard outside a church. Thereafter he appears as a ghost, who presents to nightly travelers an actual danger (rather than the largely harmless fright produced by the majority of ghosts), presumably of decapitation.
It was said that an apparition of an actual headless rider on horseback had once been seen in Winfield, West Virginia. On an unrelated but interesting note, on the third season episode of Haunted Collector it was confirmed that during the Battle of Stones River in Murfreesboro, Tennessee during the American Civil War, Union Lt. Col. Julius Garesché was actually decapitated by a cannonball while riding alongside Union Major General William S. Rosecrans.
A Special treat for every one: