“I used to think I was indecisive, but now I’m not so sure.”
Welcome to Butterfly Language, a look at the world inside and outside my head!
The main image of this post today is from a 1957 horror comic called Adventures Into The Unknown. I believe this is a post-Comics Code issue, which means there’s not a lot of gore in it & tons of goggle-eyed hypnotists. In one story, we are led to believe that a man has been possessed by the actual wig of Leonardo da Vinci—but it was actually the wig of Leonardo DiCaprio. Very weird, prescient, jarring artifact of an earlier time.
Another weird, prescient, jarring artifact of an earlier time is the 1976 movie God Told Me To. I bring it up because it was made by the great cult movie director Larry Cohen, who has just passed away…and I’m embarrassed to say that it’s one of the only Cohen flicks I’ve seen in its entirety. God Told Me To—which in some ways I’d almost compare to The Happening—is most remembered for the opening scene where a cop breaks out of a police parade and starts shooting everybody. The cop is played by Andy Kaufman. It’s my personal belief that the police parade scene in The Dark Knight, featuring the Joker, is an homage to this scene from God Told Me To. But I could be wrong.
God Told Me To seems kind of like a straightforward crime story at least halfway through, but then to say it goes off the rails after that into uncharted territory is an understatement. The protagonist, a by-the-book Catholic NYPD detective, finds out that he’s really the result of a “virgin birth” orchestrated by aliens (!), and is therefore related to the hermaphroditic cult leader antagonist (Richard Lynch in a long blond wig). The cult leader wants to then “spawn a new species” with his newfound brother—offering to carry his alien child.
It’s the sort of completely unexpected, WTF type ending that I don’t even think M. Night Shyamalan could have scrapped together (and looking at the trailer for God Told Me To, I can see that The Happening TOTALLY ripped off this movie). Cohen claimed to be influenced by both the Bible and Chariots Of The Gods? in the making of this film. Lynch’s character, at least to me, seems to be coded as a Baphomet-type figure, mixing tons of esoteric, Biblical, and UFO lore in a manner similar to the approach of Chariots Of The Gods? and other books/documentaries of that time period.
And, of course…because Lynch’s character is gender non-conforming, he’s EVIL and must die by the end of the film. Because even though readers in 1907 could mentally deal with orphan-boy Tip turning into a goddess princess at the end of Ozma Of Oz (er…spoilers), our old primal biological gatekeeping has only seemed to get more intense towards the end of the millennium and beyond. Was it because humanity was getting ever-closer to the precipice of full-out evolutionary splitting-off? Was this what films like God Told Me To, and the more common “spawn of satan” (Aeon of Horus) flicks trying to tell us?
Have we passed that precipice? I don’t know. I just know that in 2012, some weird shit happened—and I don’t think we ever really collectively, consciously processed it.
Let’s just look at some fun quotes I’ve bookmarked from Twitter over the past week:
“Being gay isn’t a choice, it’s an involuntary thing that happens when J.K. Rowling decides it’s your time.”
“I’m sad Kurt Cobain is dead but I’m glad I never had to see him go on Joe Rogan”
“He also believed in far-right conspiracy theories, had an OxyContin habit and could be aggressive when he was high. Still, he was not the kind of person anyone imagined would someday pull off the highest-profile mob killing in decades.”
—Jesse Walker quoting the New York Times on QAnon-loving mob boss killer Anthony Comello
“Uri Geller waging psychic war on Theresa May over Brexit is the new normal, I guess.”
“Everything is worse”
Other odds n’ ends…
As Loren Coleman reminds me on Twitter, today is the birthday of writer & paranormal researcher John Keel, of Mothman Prophecies fame. I’ve mentioned him on the blog before, but I feel he really needs one post or several just dedicated to him and his work.
Coleman has also authored the classic text The Copycat Effect, which, if you are curious about the idea of “spiritual contagion” influencing people to do horrible things, is worth a read. I have tons of notes on this book for a review that I scribbled up last November…and I gotta put that up!
The two recent suicides by Parkland shooting survivors definitely falls in that category…and then of course there was the connection they had with Christchurch, NZ which probably set it all off. Though certainly…people who hound the survivors online as “crisis actors” and tools of the Deep State (“Deep State” not being used the way the originator of the term intended) probably didn’t help either.
And if you’re a fan of my “Attack Of The Mind Parasites And Other Microscopic Delights,” do check out this article on how the “emerging” infectious disease bartonella (“cat scratch fever”) apparently gave a young man “rapid onset schizophrenia” and made him believe he was a “son of the Devil”…”God Told Me So,” or rather “The Cat Told Me So,” indeed! (Or as the Son of Sam might have said, “Dog Told Me To.”)
By the way, I’m a long-time cat-owner and I know I’ve NEVER been infected with any mind-altering parasite because this cat is JUST SO CUTE AND I LIVE FOR HER EVERY GLANCE!!!
Lastly, here is a new official pic from the Joaquin Phoenix “Joker” movie, which has been described by one Redditor as “Jim Jarmusch’s The Joker.”
Jim Jarmusch, by the way, used to go to the video store where I used to work. It wasn’t even Kim’s Video, it was just the wacky rental place in my Brooklyn neighborhood that was such a feature of my late teens. A novel for another day.
I seem to get into certain bands and musicians way way after they hit their peak of popularity…as if I am operating in my own sort of “timeline.” Now it’s Nine Inch Nails…as if I just discovered they existed two days ago. Oh, well.
Have a good Monday, and keep shining, you crazy diamonds!