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Tag Archives: John Amos

Notes From The Chiller Theatre Horror Convention 2013

30 Apr

April 30, 2013

This past weekend I went to the Chiller Theatre 2013 Horror Convention. This was my second year in a row and you can read about the 2012 con right here.

It was a total blast. I met and took pictures with Zacherle (The Cool Ghoul), John “Good Times” and “West Wing” Amos, Burt “Paulie from Rocky” Young, Jerry “The King” Lawlor, WWE icon, and Akira Takarada, more on him later. There were- literally- hundreds more guests, including The Monkees, Tia Carrera, and Jake Lamotta. Calling this a horror convention is very, very inaccurate.

A castle. Can you think of a better place to hold a horror convention than a hotel that looks like a castle?

A castle. Can you think of a better place to hold a horror convention than a hotel that looks like a castle?

I want to say at the outset that this was a ton of fun. The dealer’s rooms were huge and had tons of great stuff that I spent too much money on. The guests were all amazingly friendly and while it was very, very crowded, it was not too crowded to move.

I wrote all about the great time I had last year, so instead of repeat myself, I’ll present some of the odder things about the convention this year.

  • Jeremy Miller and Tracy Gold from Growing Pains were there signing autographs. They were the younger brother and sister on the show. Jeremy Miller has gone on to do pretty much nothing. Due to the setup of his area of the convention, I had to pass his table seven or eight times during the day. I never, not once saw him with a fan at his table. He was sitting next to Keith Coogan, best and only known from Adventures in Babysitting and Don’t Tell Mom The Babysitter’s Dead. That guy had tons of fans. (BTW- he’s the grandson of Uncle Fester himself, Jackie Coogan.)
  • Tracy Gold had a pretty decent number of people stopping by her. And I have to say, I can see why. At 43 she looked great. I looked her up on imdb and she has not distinguished herself either, but I wouldn’t mind taking a picture with her… if it didn’t cost $20.
  • Across from the hot Tracy Gold (yes, I mean that) was Priscilla Barnes. She was in 2005’s The Devil’s Rejects but nothing else since. And as good as Tracy Gold looked, that’s how bad Priscilla Barnes looked. You might remember her from Three’s Company, but you wouldn’t recognize her here.  It isn’t that she is now 57, it is that her face looks like ground beef, three days old.
  • The saddest sight at the convention was Burt Young. He’s 72 and he appears to have had stroke. While he was signing, he didn’t seem to really be all there, and one eye looked blown out compared to the other. Later that night, Rocky and Rocky II were on cable. There was no comparison. Burt was not taking pictures, and I would have felt bad to ask him.
Photo Apr 27, 2 16 43 PM

Burt Young

  • I also would have felt bad to ask Greg “The Hammer” Valentine for a picture because for the second year in a row I am sure he was drunk. And sadly, he was not an invited guest, like “The King,” he and some other broken down wrestlers rented the table to sell autographs.  Brutus Beefcake was there, looking like a total a-hole.
  • Next in the total a-hole category was Todd Bridges, Willis from Different Strokes. He had an attitude of self-absorption and importance about him that was just wrong coming from someone whose claim to fame is being part of Gary Coleman’s catch phrase. (“Whatchoo talkin’ ‘bout Willis?”) His substance abuse issues are legendary, and he was accompanied by his bodyguard/sober coach everywhere he went, even on a smoke break. In case you are interested, he devoured a whole box of Tastykake Cocoanut Juniors while we were there.
  • This brings me to a humorous but off-color bathroom anecdote. Hey kids, time to switch to Barney for a couple of minutes. When I went into the men’s room, the first person I passed on his way out was Todd Brides bodyguard/sober coach. I immediately panicked, envisioning Todd Bridges lighting up with Lorenzo Lamas somewhere. I hope he made it back in time. Anyway, while I was in there, someone walked in and loudly announced “I can’t use a urinal, my cock is so big I need a stall.” After an awkward pause, he apologized.
Tood Bridges and his bodyguard. Todd is soming what appears to be a regular cigarette.

Tood Bridges and his bodyguard. Todd is soming what appears to be a regular cigarette.

  • In The Monkees room, everyone was swarming around Mickey Dolenz while Peter Tork (Peter “The” Tork- who gets that reference?) sat all alone at an empty table. Despite being a huge fan of the Monkees, the whole thing felt very off and I left without taking a picture with them.
  • I would have taken a picture with Tia Carrera if she had not priced herself out of the market by charging $30 for a picture, which was $5 to $10 more than anyone else asked for.
  • While there far less people walking around in costumes this year, Batman and The Penguin returned from last year, and a guy dressed like a member of Kiss was walking around. Totally ruining the effect was the fact that he was walking around with his wife, who was pushing their baby around in a stroller.
The KISS Family Man

The KISS Family Man

Bring on 2014!

———–

And speaking of horror and castle-themed hotels, we passed a Knight’s Inn on the way to the convention, and it looked like a condemned, filthy piece of hotel-like excrement. Check out Allan Keyes’ Knight’s Inn blog here.

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1970’s TV Role Models

1 Jan

January 1, 2010

It is the New Year, a time for reflection. I find myself thinking back on the many things I did and did not accomplish over the past twelve months. One thing sticks out, and for my own peace of mind, it is time to answer the question

Who is the best 1970’s television role model?

Round One

MABEL KING VS. ESTHER ROLLE

WHAT’S HAPPENING? Vs. GOOD TIMES

Mama was the semi-rotund mother of Dee and Raj, and by extension the mother of their friends, Dwayne and Rerun, who smelled so bad that his odor lingered in a room ten minutes after he left, hence his name. Mama worked as a housekeeper during the day and exotic dancer at night. Mama’s style of parenting was the “threaten to kill” style, and Dee would often taunt Raj with “ohhhhhh, Mama’s gonna kill you and dismember your corpse!” (Raj, by the way, is short for Rajer. Sigh.) Her husband, played by Thalmus Rasulala, had walked out on her years earlier. He was a womanizer and a gambler. He is seen here, sexing it up with Pam Grier.

On the other hand, he did manage to destroy Blacula in the film named, coincidentally, Blacula. Any man who could banish the immortal William Marshall could not have been that bad a husband.

NOTE: When searching for Mabel King, do not confuse her with professional wrestler King Mabel, though there is a slight resemblance.

Esther Rolle played Miami Florida, and her biggest challenge was her son JJ:

In some episodes JJ delivered chicken for a restaurant and he wore a chicken on his head. No stereotype there, mover along.

Miami also had an absent husband. James had died some years earlier when working on the Alaskan Pipeline. During a freak snowstorm, James drove his truck into the lair of an angry polar bear and neither made it out alive. It was a very close thing, however, as this is what the bear had to face:

His body was never recovered, and many suspect a CIA cover-up, as months later an “Admiral James” took a high level cabinet position.

It was never clear what Miami did for a living, though she sometimes left the house early in the morning and returned late at night. Eventually she remarried this man,

known on the professional golf circuit as Buffalo Woods.

In the final analysis, the contest between Mabel King and Esther Rolle comes down to intelligence, and Esther Rolle was smart enough to leave her show, at least until the producers lured her back with more money.

WINNER: ESTHER ROLLE

Coming Soon: Round Two: “The Man” Vs. Epstein

Barnaby Jones

Abe Vigoda

Crest Cavity Creeps

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