Colours Beyond Space, Shadows Out Of Time, Whisperers in Darkness: A Thread of Cosmic Horror

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Heavily agreed re Smith's being underrated and Dunsany's truly, as you say, sui generis role. Very much worth having a collection of his stories, it's a hell of a lodestone, the more so because it covers so much different ground.

Ned Raggett, Tuesday, 29 August 2017 23:17 (three years ago) link

lord dunsany, who influenced all the early greats, has some sui generis unique trippy fairy tales totally worth seeking out

i checked out "Gods, Men, and Ghosts" (mostly due to the illustrations by Sidney Sime) and its a really nice read. not sure how "cosmic horror" it is as it mostly seemed like slightly new spins on traditional fantasy and folk tales.

feel like a lot of this subgenre was paperback parodies of Orientalism. "The Secret Doctrine" at least attempts to synthesize a lot of age old mysticism. a friend got me the "Necronomicon" once and it felt like an art project with no substance, rooted in western materialism/philosophy while doing Occult Drag. the "cosmic horror" element never amounted to much for me aside from maybe a reaction against Determinism.

AdamVania (Adam Bruneau), Tuesday, 29 August 2017 23:56 (three years ago) link

? Necronomicon is not a real book.

Οὖτις, Wednesday, 30 August 2017 00:04 (three years ago) link

I mean, first it was a fictional book and then various hacks published actual books w that title to capitalize on it but of course they are garbage

Οὖτις, Wednesday, 30 August 2017 00:05 (three years ago) link

Insanely fiddly rpg/boardgame hybrid Manions of Madness does a very good job of capturing the Lovecraft vibe, for all its flaws (which the 2nd edition apparently rectifies somewhat).

chap, Wednesday, 30 August 2017 11:19 (three years ago) link

shout-out to The King in Yellow, well used in True Detective

André Ryu (Neil S), Wednesday, 30 August 2017 11:26 (three years ago) link

Does 2001 have a place here

passé aggresif (darraghmac), Wednesday, 30 August 2017 12:05 (three years ago) link

not sure how "cosmic horror" it is

lovecraft's elder god names / pantheon are the interpol to lord dunsany's mythic nomenclature's joy division imho

reggie (qualmsley), Wednesday, 30 August 2017 12:19 (three years ago) link

William Hope Hodgson's The House on the Borderland is batshit and fantastic

i know kore-eda (or something), Wednesday, 30 August 2017 12:27 (three years ago) link

Dunsany views man's insignificance in the grand scheme as a somewhat benign thing, imo; cf that awesome story that begins with the narrator being buried alive for some unnamed crime and then kept alive through decades as the world changes. Sounds grim as fuck written down like that but the story is actually kinda peaceful, reveling in the glory of nature that outlives us all. Lovecraft saw no beauty there.

I mean, what's the camera gonna pan away to (literally and rhetorically)?

Theoretically at least, I reckogn a lot of German expressionism was about highlighting man's insignificance, not in the face of cosmic horror but of authority/bureaucracy, but the visual shorthands they came up with for that could still be applied?

Daniel_Rf, Wednesday, 30 August 2017 13:40 (three years ago) link

I feel like sound design has often been the way to do this? Even just with something highly spiritual like Kiarostami, where off-screen voices abound, to Son of Saul that deliberately keeps the most horrific thing (the gas chamber) heard but unseen. A cosmic horror film would work with sound as much as image. And coincidentally, Twin Peaks The Return does this a lot :)

Frederik B, Wednesday, 30 August 2017 13:46 (three years ago) link

i dont really think David Lynch is a good fit, he is too spiritual, too optimistic. he may play with horror but there is clearly an underlying order to things.

AdamVania (Adam Bruneau), Wednesday, 30 August 2017 13:55 (three years ago) link

just never found "it turns people insane" to be all that interesting a concept in and of itself. people go insane over money, jealousy, etc. people go insane from their brains failing in the natural course of time.

AdamVania (Adam Bruneau), Wednesday, 30 August 2017 13:58 (three years ago) link

I mean, there's a couple of things. One is cosmic horror as a philosophy. No, Lynch probably doesn't fit. But if we're talking a possible cosmic horror visual aesthetic, I would say you should learn from Kiarostami and Lynch, rather than Carpenter. Even though Carpenter, philosophically, might be closer to cosmic.

Frederik B, Wednesday, 30 August 2017 14:06 (three years ago) link

XXP don't think that holds up at all tbh, at best there's a layer of order laid over things

passé aggresif (darraghmac), Wednesday, 30 August 2017 14:08 (three years ago) link

anyone else read adam roberts' the thing itself? touches on lovecraftian cosmic horror pretty cleverly by tying in kant, artificial intelligence and the thing - i liked it quite a bit

frankfurters take on new glamour in this gleaming aspic (bizarro gazzara), Wednesday, 30 August 2017 14:37 (three years ago) link

Does 2001 have a place here

i don't think so - while the motives of the aliens behind the monoliths aren't expressed directly they seem pretty keen to help bowman have a good death and then return to earth to move evolution forward for the second time, which suggests a level of care that cthulhu is just not into

frankfurters take on new glamour in this gleaming aspic (bizarro gazzara), Wednesday, 30 August 2017 14:39 (three years ago) link

which is not to suggest that 2001 isn't scary, cuz i find it genuinely unsettling

frankfurters take on new glamour in this gleaming aspic (bizarro gazzara), Wednesday, 30 August 2017 14:40 (three years ago) link

shout-out to The King in Yellow, well used in True Detective

this book is great but I ended up resenting how it got dropped into TD tbh

Οὖτις, Wednesday, 30 August 2017 16:06 (three years ago) link

One detail missing from the Brian Aldiss obituaries was that he coined the term "Shaggy God Stories"

Elvis Telecom, Wednesday, 30 August 2017 23:20 (three years ago) link

Event Horizon i think fits in here, insofar as films go. whether or not you find it successful or even not-terrible (i think it's pretty solid) is another matter.

nomar, Wednesday, 30 August 2017 23:25 (three years ago) link

event horizon is such a frustrating missed opportunity - that cast and production design with a better script and director could have been great

frankfurters take on new glamour in this gleaming aspic (bizarro gazzara), Wednesday, 30 August 2017 23:29 (three years ago) link

David Lynch probably captures the mood of "basic wrongness" the best, but his stuff is dependent on people and their relationships to one another. I'd love to see him take a crack at a Ligotti story, though.

― Devilock, Tuesday, 29 August 2017 18:09

Lynch optioned an adaptation of "Last Feast Of The Harlequin" but I think he would have just been the producer if it had gone ahead.

Robert Adam Gilmour, Thursday, 31 August 2017 01:02 (three years ago) link

Have no idea how you'd create a satisfying Lynch tribute anthology but I'd like to try this book, but I don't have high hopes

Music on the other hand would be quite doable.

Robert Adam Gilmour, Thursday, 31 August 2017 17:58 (three years ago) link

Anyone else spot Lovecraft's Supernatural Horror In Literature in Nanjiani's book pile in The Big Sick? It's the most important piece ever written about horror stories.

Robert Adam Gilmour, Thursday, 31 August 2017 18:29 (three years ago) link

four months pass...

Just realizes H.P. Lovecraft's "Nemesis" has the same meter as Billy Joel's "Piano Man."

— Captain Video (@OurWorldcomic) January 14, 2018

Robert Adam Gilmour, Friday, 19 January 2018 14:27 (three years ago) link

one year passes...

Revive as I've recently started listening to the great Weird Studies podcast, which takes a completely serious analytical approach to aspects of "the weird" in popular culture(topics including Twin Peaks, Philip K Dick, Robert Aickman, Under The Skin, Shirley Jackson etc). It can get a bit heavy into the philosophical side but it's always interesting.

The episode on Crowley and magick is a bit of a headspinner, in which both hosts basically conclude "Yeah, it shouldn't work but it completely does."

Brainless Addlepated Timid Muddleheaded Awful No-Account (Pheeel), Sunday, 14 April 2019 10:01 (two years ago) link

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