Monday, December 19, 2011

Mel Gordon on The Grand Guiginol: Theatre of Fear and Terror: Episode 8 of The Midnight Archive!

Episode eight of The Midnight Archive--the web-based documentary series centered around Observatory--has just been uploaded and can be viewed above. This episode is one I am personally very excited about; it is based on the work of my all-time favorite rogue-scholar Mel Gordon, specifically on his research into The Grand Guignol as explored in his classic Grand Guiginol: Theatre of Fear and Terror. It was shot in The Morbid Anatomy Library the night of his recent Observatory lecture on the same topic and features dozens of amazing images and even film footage (!!!) of a circa 1960s Grand Guignol performance, as well as a fascinating conversation with Mel Gordon. Check it out (highly recommended!) by hitting play above, or by clicking here.

Film maker Ronni Thomas--the creator of The Midnight Archive--has this to say about The Grand Guignol:
I have to admit - before i began this whole thing - i had no idea what the Grand Guignol theater was... I was raised on a magnificent diet of blood and gore as a kid. (For Christ's sake - i gave up my career as an adjunct professor to work for less than minimum wage at Troma films...) But - as always - the unsung bastard of this artform was a sleazy theatre in paris where eyes were gouged out - faces were burnt off - and torturous agony was displayed before some of the wealthiest and most affluent aristocrats while visiting the fabulous city of blights... (lights). In this episode - Mel Gordon - the man who LITERALLY wrote the book on the Grand Guignol gives us a brief explanation of what it was and what it meant to society, the world and all those other things i could care less about... I knew nothing about the theater before i started this as i've stated - and i've learned about 3 minutes more than that as i hope you will... enjoy... and please consider chopping up your neighbor as a fun tribute.
For more on the series, to see former episodes, or to sign up for the mailing list so as to be alerted to future uploads, visit The Midnight Archive website by clicking here. You can also "like" it on Facebook--and thus be alerted--by clicking here.

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