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Showing posts from 2020

Gothic themes in The Vanishing / Spoorloos (1988)

The Vanishing / Spoorloos (1988) has a cheerful appearance, but a dark feel. A chilling tale of tragic love, it concludes in the most horrifying of ways. And, like many Gothic tales, a strange element of fun lingers amid the hellish torment. It has all the ingredients of mystery and revenge: a boyfriend and his lover, wronged by a perfidious killer. But it lacks the mediaeval imagery and immediate fanfare of American outings (Seven, Silence of the Lambs, etc). Instead, it's more laid back—a vacation gone awry. 
A Dutch couple, Saskia and Rex, are traveling in France. While on the road, Saskia tells Rex of a dream—her, trapped inside a golden egg surrounded by darkness. Her egg must touch another egg for the darkness to end. Then, the two eggs can meld, sharing oblivion forever. The Vanishing is based off a novel called The Golden Egg (1984; written by Tim Krabbé, also The Vanishing's screenwriter). 
If Saskia's dream is hard to picture, the next scene illustrates it for us. …

Hell-blazers: Update 2, "The Speedrun Killer" — FrostyXen

I'm Nicholas van der Waard, host of "Hell-blazers." What follows is a second interview with FrostyXen, a past WR-holder for the game on Speedrun.com (click here for his latest run, which has since been beaten by speedrunner Xiae's own run). This interview covers the game’s patches, their effect on its ability to be speedrun, and the game's professional scene.

"Hell-blazers" interviews Twitch streamers, speedrunners and Doom fans about Doom Eternal (2020); it asks them, based on their own experiences, to compare the game to the rest of the franchise, and what effect it will have on speedrunning and gaming at large. General information about "Hell-blazers" can be found, here; a compendium of the interviews as they are published can be found here (which also includes interesting videos, break-downs and other articles).

Instability

Nick: Since Patch 2 of Doom Eternal, I’ve seen considerably less speedrunners playing Doom Eternal on Twitch. Speedrunne…

Hell-blazers: Update 2, "The Speedrun Killer" — Your Mate Devo

I'm Nicholas van der Waard, host of "Hell-blazers." What follows is another interview with Your Mate Devo, an Aussie speedrunner and software engineer. We cover the game’s Update 2 patch, and its effect on the game's ability to be speedrun
"Hell-blazers" interviews Twitch streamers, speedrunners and Doom fans about Doom Eternal (2020); it asks them, based on their own experiences, to compare the game to the rest of the franchise, and what effect it will have on speedrunning and gaming at large. General information about "Hell-blazers" can be found, here; a compendium of the interviews as they are published can be found here (which also includes interesting videos, break-downs and other articles).


Instability Nick: Since Patch 2 of Doom Eternal, I’ve seen considerably less speedrunners playing Doom Eternal on Twitch. Speedrunners comment on frequent run-ending crashes introduced by Patch 2.

Does a crash-to-desktop basically equal a dead run for an Ul…

Podcast: Goth Nick & Goth Chick

I've been busy working on a new series, so I haven't had as much time to write blog posts—at least for now. "Goth Nick & Goth Chick" is a podcast-style YouTube series hosted by myself and my partner, Lindsay Wheeler. In it, we discuss the Gothic—what it is, and its individual components in a great detail.

Note: This section will be updated as future videos in the series go live.


Episode 1, the Pilot
This episode discusses the Gothic more generally by outlining its core components: the uncanny, the abject, hauntology, atmosphere, presentation (i.e., horror and terror), oscillation; and various tropes, including the Faustian Bargain and the Promethean Quest.




Episode 2, the Uncanny

This episode covers the uncanny within the Gothic mode: from masks, slashers, aliens, robots, ghosts, and more!




Episode 3, the Hauntology

This episode covers Derrida's Hauntology within the Gothic mode, as well as the differences between it and pastiche!



Episode 4, the Abject
This episode cove…

Hell-blazers: Doom Eternal Speedrunning Q&A — FrostyXen

My name is Nicholas van der Waard, host of "Hell-blazers." What follows is my interview with Doom Eternal21-year old world record-holder (for UN 100%) FrostyXen. FrostyXen also has a YouTube channel, as well.
"Hell-blazers," interviews Twitch streamers, speedrunners and Doom fans about Doom Eternal (2020); it asks them, based on their own experiences, to compare the game to the rest of the franchise, and what effect it will have on speedrunning and gaming at large. General information about the Q&A can be found here; a compendium of the interviews as they are published can be found here (which also includes interesting videos, break-downs and other articles).


The Runner
Nick: Many of the players I've interviewed are in their mid-30s, and have grown up with Doom during the '90s. Because you're younger, is Doom Eternal your first Doom experience?

Frosty: I first played Doom 2016 when it went on sale on the Xbox One like six months before Eternal c…