31 Days of Horror: The Seventh Victim

Producer Val Lewton managed to make some of the more interesting horror movies of the 1940's. He went for a more ominous approach to the stories rather the lets show everything approach that Hollywood typically makes.

The Seventh Victim (1943) is almost a precursor to Rosemary's Baby. Young Kim Hunter goes to the big city to look for her sister Jean Brooks who has disappeared. Hunter finds the apartment Brooks has rented empty, except for a chair and noose. With the help of psychiatrist Tom Conway (who's playing the same character he played in Lewton's earlier masterpiece Cat People) Hunter discovers that her sister is involved with a group of Satanists.

Stylishly shot with a dark foreboding feel, The Seventh Victim is easily my favorite of Val Lewton's productions and there are quite a few excellent ones. The ending is a shocker and is definitely in contradiction to the Production Code that governed and censored movies then. How they got away with it - I'll never know.

Your Daily Mail

Shorter Jan Moir: an Irish pop star got drunk and died, probably from choking on his own vomit. Therefore homosexuality is bad.(The Daily Mail)

Saturday Morning Cartoon: Super Sesame Street

A couple of weeks back Shane went all Batman, posting clips from Batman: The Animated Series. Sure, sure--it's pretty good. But Sesame Street beat Shane to Batman by about 35 years. Here's a clip that aired in the early 1970s. Batman and Robin (with their Super Friends voice actors) watch Joker learn a valuable lesson:

Okay yes, that was very lame. And Robin has the same voice as Shaggy from Scooby Doo (aw come on, it's the incomparable Casey Kasem!).

You want truly spectacular Sesame Street super heroics? Check this out.

The letter S: It's my favourite, too!

Pick of the Day: Crystal Shawanda

Generally at prairie dog we shy away from covering country music. Does that make us assholes? Maybe. But we do style ourselves as a city magazine. And while it's true that country music does have a following in Regina, we prefer to focus our time, energy and talent (not just in music, but in all facets of arts and entertainment) on stuff that's got more of an urban vibe to it.

In that regard, country music strikes us as being decidedly rural and old school. Besides, to borrow an old agriculture metaphor, when it comes to country music it's pretty hard to separate the wheat from the chaff. Yeah, there's some talented performers out there. But there's also a lot of uber-cheesy, uber-corny, redneck wankers too.

Thus far in her career, Crystal Shawanda has avoided falling into that trap. Of Ojibwe descent, she released her debut album in June 2008. It was called Dawn of a New Day which happens to be what her surname (Shawanda) translates as in English. She's at the Casino Regina Lounge tonight. Here's the video for her debut single "You Can Let Go" (YouTube)