Saturday, December 26, 2009
Sunday, December 06, 2009
Monday, November 23, 2009
Sunday, November 08, 2009
Friday, October 30, 2009
Earlier today on FOX 40 LIVE, Movie Critic, Mike Mechanick gave his Top 10 Horror movies to watch on Halloween. While he lists several good movies, I just don't agree with his list. Only one movie is on both lists. First is Mike Mechanick's Top 10 Halloween Movies:
7-SHAUN OF THE DEAD-2004
6-NIGHT OF THE LIVING DEAD-1968
3-EVIL DEAD 2-1987
As you can see, every movie on his list are great movies! Some are humorous, some are down right scary. Problem is, the oldest movie on the list is from 1968. (Night Of The Living Dead) Only 41 years old, nothing older. There are so many classics from decades ago that outshine the new crap. And they are in Black & White! The following is my Top 10 List. There are newer movies but no newer than 1985. Some are scary, there are a few that are gory but they are all classics!:
Floyd Perry's Top 10 Halloween Movies!
10-CAT PEOPLE-1942 (The Val Lewton classic is ten times better than the 1982 remake!)
9-THE EVIL DEAD-1982 (In my opinion, the original is better than the sequel. Less laughs and more scares!)
8-BLACK SABBATH-1963 (The Wurdalak segment from this Mario Bava classic gave me nightmares when I was a child)
7-THE REANIMATOR-1985 (Watch the Unrated Version available On DVD. Very Bloody and Very Scary!)
6-CURSE OF THE DEMON-1957 (The DVD contains both the U.S. edit as well as the longer British version. This movie scared me as a child. And that Demon in the movie! Awesome!)
5-PHANTASM-1979 (The tagline for this movie is "If This Movie Doesn't Scare You, You Are Already Dead!" Very good scary movie. Better than the sequels.)
4-THE BRIDE OF FRANKENSTEIN-1935 (I wish I could list all of the Universal Classics, But since I picked one, it is this one.)
3-THE TEXAS CHAINSAW MASSACRE-1974 (The original rules! The first sequel is decent but the rest of the sequels as well as that Big Budget Remake and its sequel Suck Big Time!)
2-NIGHT OF THE LIVING DEAD-1968 (The first time I saw this was in 1974 on Bob Wilkins CREATURE FEATURES on KTVU Channel 2. Spooked me then, Spooks me now! Avoid all those Public Domain Eyesores as well as the 1998 expanded version and the colorized version and both remakes! The definitive versions are Elite Entertainment's Millenium Edition and the recent Weinstein Deluxe DVD!)
1-SUSPIRIA-1977 (Still scares me to this day. For the longest time, I always put Night Of The Living Dead as #1 until I saw Suspiria on Laserdisc about 15 years ago and now this is my personal favorite. It is available on DVD in its 2.35:1 OAR!)
Well that is my Top 10 list. There are so many others that I'd like to have added like DAWN OF THE DEAD-1978, FRANKENSTEIN-1931, THE BODY SNATCHER-1946, and RETURN OF THE LIVING DEAD-1985 but then my list would become a Top 100 Halloween Movies To Watch and not Top 10. Whether you agree with Mike's list, My list or not, let me know what your Top 10 list is? You can post it in the comments section of this blog. Happy Halloween!
Sunday, October 18, 2009
Monday, October 05, 2009
Sunday, September 27, 2009
On This Evening, BOB WILKINS Showed The English Dubbed French Sci-Fi Movie Titled ATTACK OF THE ROBOTS (1966) aka CARTES SUR TABLE.
This Movie Stars EDDIE (Alphaville, RAID ON ENTEBBE, IT LIVES AGAIN) CONSTANTINE And Directed By The Infamous JESS (DR. ORLOFF'S MONSTER, EUGENIE, FACELESS) FRANCO.
Monday, September 21, 2009
Sunday, September 13, 2009
On This Evening, BOB WILKINS showed the 3D Classic In Glorious 2D: IT CAME FROM OUTER SPACE (1953).
Also Available On DVD In Glorious 2D!!
Sunday, September 06, 2009
Sunday, August 30, 2009
Sunday, August 23, 2009
Sunday, August 16, 2009
On this evening, BOB WILKINS showed a Japanese Sci-Fi Double Feature, THE FINAL WAR (1960) aka "Dai-Sanji Sekai Taisen : Yonju-Ichi Jikan No Kyofu" & INVASION OF THE NEPTUNE MEN (1961) aka "Uchu Kaisoku-Sen".
The Latter Starred SONNY CHIBA who starred in THE STREET FIGHTER (1974) and had a part in Quentin Tarentino's KILL BILL movies.
Sunday, August 09, 2009
On this evening, BOB WILKINS showed THE HAND (1960) & THE MAD EXECUTIONERS. The latter is a German Krimi based on a EDGAR WALLACE novel.
But a real life horror was happening in Southern California on this day 40 years ago. It was the SHARON TATE murders caused by the CHARLIE MANSON FAMILY. Very Sad.
Sunday, August 02, 2009
On this evening, BOB WILKINS showed a Double Feature of SHE DEMONS & GIANT FROM THE UNKNOWN. The latter starred BUDDY BAER as the Giant Killer Spanish Conquistador.
Buddy is the brother of famed boxer, MAX BAER and uncle of actor MAX BAER, JR who played Jethro in THE BEVERLY HILLBILLIES tv series. Buddy Baer was born JACOB HENRY BAER on JUNE 11, 1915 and he passed away on JULY 18, 1986. Buddy was over 6'6 and was a character actor and was also in JACK AND THE BEANSTALK with ABBOTT & COSTELLO, SNOW WHITE AND THE THREE STOOGES as well as TV Series like ADVENTURES OF SUPERMAN and GUNSMOKE. Later Buddy owned a Furniture Store in SACRAMENTO, CA as well as being a Movie Host on KMUV-TV Channel 31 (Now KMAX-TV). Buddy is buried in EAST LAWN SIERRA HILLS MEMORIAL PARK in Sacramento.
Wednesday, July 29, 2009
Sunday, July 19, 2009
Monday, July 13, 2009
Another night of a CHRISTOPHER LEE Double Feature: CASTLE OF THE LIVING DEAD (1964) & HORROR CASTLE (1963)
Both Are Available On DVD, The Former As THE VIRGIN OF NUREMBERG On The SHRIEK SHOW Label While The Latter Is Available On DVD-R From SINISTER CINEMA.
Sunday, July 05, 2009
On the day after the Fourth Of July, BOB WILKINS showed a CHRISTOPHER LEE DOUBLE FEATURE of THE TERROR OF THE TONGS and TERROR IN THE CRYPT
Both of these films are available on DVD. The Former On A Fine DVD Box Set From SONY called ICONS OF ADVENTURE:HAMMER FILMS while the Later Is Available From RETROMEDIA.
Sunday, June 28, 2009
On this evening, BOB WILKINS showed 2 Ape Films, One Lesser Known French Film and a more Well Known One. The first movie was THE MASK OF THE GORILLA (1958) aka LE GORILLE VOUS SALVE BIEN. Can't find any info whatsoever on this film. Don't know if this was ever released on Video or DVD?
The other film shown was KONGA (1961) which was written by HERMAN COHEN and starred MICHAEL GOUGH. It was released by AIP and is available readily on DVD from MGM HOME ENTERTAINMENT.
Thursday, June 25, 2009
Sunday, June 21, 2009
Tuesday, June 16, 2009
Sunday, June 07, 2009
Wednesday, June 03, 2009
Sunday, May 24, 2009
Sunday, May 17, 2009
Sunday, May 10, 2009
Monday, May 04, 2009
1969 All Starting Times Are 8:30PM and 90 Minutes Unless Otherwise Noted
May 3: FRANKENSTEIN (1931)
May 10: THE INVISIBLE MAN (1933)
May 17: DRACULA (1931)
May 24: THE WOLFMAN (1941)
May 31: THE INVISIBLE MAN RETURNS (1939)
June 7: THE MUMMY (1932)
June 14: ISLE OF THE DEAD
JUNE 21: THE BODY SNATCHER
June 28: HOUSE OF FRANKENSTEIN
July 5: THE INVISIBLE MAN'S REVENGE (1944)
July 12: BRIDE OF FRANKENSTEIN (1935)
July 19: THE INVISIBLE RAY (1936)
July 26: DRACULA'S DAUGHTER (1936)
August 2: SON OF FRANKENSTEIN (1939)
August 9: THE MUMMY'S TOMB (1942)
August 16: PRE-EMPTED by AFL FOOTBALL: Oakland Raiders vs San Diego Chargers
August 23: THE MYSTERY OF EDWIN DROOD (1935)
August 30: FRANKENSTEIN MEETS THE WOLFMAN (1943)
September 6: THE BLACK CAT (1934)
September 13: THE RAVEN (1935) 1Hour And 15 Minutes
September 20: THE HEAD (1961)
September 27: CURSE OF THE DEMON (1958)
October 4: THE TINGLER (1959) 9:PM
October 11: THE STRANGLERS OF BOMBAY (1960) 9:PM
October 18: PHANTOM OF THE RUE MORGUE (1954)
October 25: DRACULA (1931)
November 1: I WALKED WITH A ZOMBIE (1943)
November 8: THE INVISIBLE MAN (1933)
November 15: THE CREEPING UNKNOWN (1956)
November 22: THE TINGLER (1959)
November 29: THE MUMMY (1931)
December 6: BRIDE OF THE GORILLA (1951)
December 13: THE VAMPIRE BAT (1933)
December 20: THE CRAWLING EYE (1958)
December 27: THE BODY SNATCHER (1945)
1970 All Starting Times Are Now At 8:PM
January 3: NIGHT MONSTER (1942)
January 10: DRACULA'S DAUGHTER (1936)
January 17: WEREWOLF OF LONDON (1935)
January 24: SON OF DRACULA (1943)
January 31: THE SPIDER WOMAN STRIKES BACK (1947)
February 7: THE BEAST FROM 20,000 FATHOMS
February 14: THE HOUND OF THE BASKERVILLES (1959)
February 21: RETURN OF THE FLY (1959)
February 28:THE MAD GHOUL (1943)
March 7: FRANKENSTEIN (1931)
March 14: MAN MADE MONSTER (1941)
March 21: THE BEAST OF HOLLOW MOUNTAIN
March 28: DRACULA (1931)
April 4: THE INVISIBLE RAY (1936)
April 11: INVASION OF THE BODY SNATCHERS (1956)
April 18: The 27TH DAY (1957)
April 25: SABAKA (1955)
May 2: GOG (1954)
Sunday, May 03, 2009
By Perry Martin
When my good friend Floyd Perry, curator of this blog, recently asked me to share my memories of KTXL-40’s long departed horror movie showcase BLACK MUSEUM, I readily agreed. How could I not? I seem to be one of the few people around who actually remember the show — which I avidly watched as a child, and which inspired my life-long affection for classic monster movies.
Airing every Saturday night between May 3rd, 1969 and May 2nd, 1970, BLACK MUSEUM offered the rare opportunity for Northern California monster-fans to consort with Frankenstein, Dracula, the Wolf-Man and their various brides, sons, daughters and friends. For me — a boy growing up in Yuba City (a quiet suburb north of Sacramento), where movie monsters were as scarce as vampires at dawn — BLACK MUSEUM arrived like the answer to an ardent wish.
Long before I’d seen a classic horror film, I’d been fascinated by all things spooky — especially, the Universal monsters. I can actually pinpoint my first encounter with them: Christmas Eve, 1964. I was 6-years-old, strolling with my parents through the toy department at Sears, when suddenly they jumped out at me — Dracula, Frankenstein, The Mummy, Wolf-Man — all poised on the wonderfully creepy box covers of a new line of model kits. It was love at first sight; and although my parents pulled me away — empty-handed and pleading — I eventually acquired and built every one of those models.
Unfortunately, seeing the movies that inspired those kits proved far more challenging, and my desire to track them down grew into a passion — as though it was the single most important goal I could ever hope to accomplish.
Those were the dark days before home video or DVD, when the only way to see vintage films, horror or otherwise, was on television. At the time, there were only three TV stations broadcasting to my area: KCRA-3, KXTV-10 and KOVR-13 — none of which owned “Shock Theater,” the Universal-licensed package of films that contained all the monster classics I desperately longed to view.
Of those three local stations, KCRA was the only one that regularly broadcast movies of a fantastic nature: on Saturday afternoons, the station unspooled 50s sci-fi films like THE BEAST FROM 20,000 FATHOMS and THE GIANT BEHEMOTH on a program called CPM THEATER. Then, if you were lucky enough to have parents who’d let you stay up past midnight (I was), you could catch such low grade fare as MONSTER FROM THE SURF and CREATION OF THE HUMANOIDS on another KCRA program called 7-ARTS THEATER, hosted by Bob Wilkins. As readers of this blog well know, Wilkins’ trademarks were a peppy theme song (Neal Hefti’s “Gotham City Municipal Swing Band”), a rocking chair, a cigar and his own dry wit. I liked him a lot — much more than most of the movies he played. It was the classic Universal monsters that I longed to see — and they were nowhere to be found on Northern California televisions at the time.
My yearning was further fueled by the discovery of Famous Monsters of Filmland, a kid’s magazine filled with eye-magnetizing photos of classic creatures. Still, the films themselves remained frustratingly out-of-reach.
Then, in 1968, cable television came to my home — like a raincloud to a desert — and everything changed. Suddenly, a whole new crop of stations began to flower, including KTXL-40, an independent channel carving its niche as the area’s prime source of vintage movies. KTXL began casting its signal on October 26th, 1968. Exactly 189 days later, on the night of May 3rd, 1969, the doors of BLACK MUSEUM creaked open for the first time to present the original FRANKENSTEIN. I wish I could say I was there for that occasion, but the program ran for about six months before I finally stumbled upon it.
Dissolve to Friday, October 31st, 1969, approximately 9:15 p.m. Dressed as Dracula, I returned home from a highly successful night of trick-or-treating, entered our living room and — lo and behold — there was my father watching BRIDE OF FRANKENSTEIN on television. The movie was almost over — I’d arrived just as the monster was hurling a victim from a castle tower — but I knew in a flash that I’d struck the monster-lode. Finally, a genuine horror classic on my own TV! I peeled off my cape and plastic fangs, plunged to the floor, and fixed my eyes on the glowing tube.
Watching the remainder of the film, I soon discovered that I was actually in the midst of a FRANKENSTEIN marathon, presented by KTXL in celebration of Halloween. While I’d missed all of the original FRANKENSTEIN and most of BRIDE, SON OF FRANKENSTEIN and GHOST OF FRANKENSTEIN were on their way, and nothing — not God, the Devil or bedtime —was going to keep me from seeing them.
Immovable, I sat in front of my TV for the rest of the marathon and, before the night was over, learned that KTXL had a weekly horror movie program, something called BLACK MUSEUM, which aired Saturdays at 8:30 p.m. I resolved to be there the following night, a Saturday — and for every Saturday night thereafter.
BLACK MUSEUM was a “no host” horror show —there was no equivalent of Zacherley or Vampira to chaperone the ghoulish proceedings. Instead, the program began with a highly atmospheric animated sequence. It’s been almost 40 years since I’ve seen it, but I’ll do my best to accurately remember and describe it…
It’s night, and a series of disembodied footprints are creeping through a moonlit graveyard — past some crumbling tombstones, a crooked fence, a few barren trees — all to the beat of some ominous music: dum-dum-dum-dum-DUM! Lightning flashes and a flock of bats take flight. The footprints continue on, winding toward a castle silhouetted on a hilltop against the night sky. Suddenly there is a flash of lighting; as it recedes, the program’s title appears and a foreboding voice intones: “Welcome to…Black Museum!” The camera pushes closer as the music builds to a crescendo. Then, as the music’s final note trails off, there is another flash of lighting and the screen goes black. For a moment — just long enough to catch your breath — all is still and dark. Then we slowly fade up… Often on the antiquated, black-and-white footage of a small airplane, its engine humming as it circles a spinning globe, and the words: “A Universal Picture.” The evening’s entertainment has commenced.
From beginning-to-end, that opening sequence probably ran less than 20-seconds. Nevertheless, I loved it — not only for what it was but also for what it promised: an evening that would capture the senses, excite the nerves, and fire the imagination.
Watching BLACK MUSEUM, I first encountered all of Universal’s horror classics from the 1930s and 40s, and many other ghastly gems. It was there I met Boris Karloff, Bela Lugosi, Lon Chaney Jr. and their brethren. I also discovered one of my favorite movies, the original INVASION OF THE BODY SNATCHERS, and even saw a few assorted krimi. (KTXL owned a package of the German-made thrillers.) Of course, I always preferred the Universal classics, but whatever movie was scheduled, I was there for it: watching with a level of intensity that can only be experienced by a 10-year-old boy.
Each episode of BLACK MUSEUM lasted 90 minutes. During commercial breaks, the announcer would sometimes provide reassuring comments like, “We shall return to THE WEREWOLF OF LONDON on…Black Museum!” For some reason, his words for one of these segments still echo in my mind verbatim: “Stay turned for the frightening conclusion of SON OF DRACULA, starring Lon Chaney, Evelyn Ankers and Louise Allbrit-tit-tit-tit-ton….” (His voice trailing off strangely.)
When the night’s program had ended, we would return to the spooky animated landscape where, as the ominous music reprised, the disembodied footprints would retrace their route away from the castle and through the graveyard. The announcer’s voice would also return, uttering lines like: “Thank you for watching tonight’s feature. Tune-in next week when George Zucco and David Bruce star in THE MAD GHOUL on…Black Museum!”
You can bet that I did just that — after seven days of agonized anticipation. At the time, nothing seemed more important to me than watching BLACK MUSEUM. I even negotiated a deal with my family that amounted to me relinquishing all say over what we watched on television for the rest of the week in exchange for full control on Saturday nights.
Over that year, our area’s cable service widened and we began to receive other stations — including KEMO-20 from San Francisco, which had its own horror film program, SHOCK-IT-TO-ME, airing opposite BLACK MUSEUM. SHOCK-IT-TO-ME was hosted by a droll character named Asmodeous; I liked him a lot and sometimes watched his show, but most of the time I remained loyal to BLACK MUSEUM.
Then, on the night of May 9th, 1970, I turned-in to KTXL at the usual time, braced myself for the start of BLACK MUSEUM — and received a disorienting shock. Instead of launching into the expected title sequence, the camera faded up on a mysterious figure seated on a darkened set, and a very familiar piece of music began to play: Neal Hefti’s “Gotham City Municipal Swing Band.” A second later, the lights came up, illuminating the figure: none-other-than Bob Wilkins, complete with cigar and rocking chair!
For a moment, I was wildly confused. What was going on? Had a time warp transported me three hours into the future and changed the channels on my TV? Of course, even before the music had ended and Wilkins had greeted the KTXL audience, I’d figured it out: I knew that Wilkins had left KCRA several weeks before; clearly, he’d jumped ships and was now going to be hosting movies in this new time and place.
I was excited: I really liked Bob Wilkins — as I saw it, the only deficiencies of his KCRA show were its late night timeslot and the generally poor quality of its films — both would clearly be corrected by this change. It was going to be the best of both worlds: a great host showing great movies. A whole new era of monster movie watching was beginning, and I was thrilled to be there for it. However, with some sadness, I also realized I’d never see BLACK MUSEUM again. It was a fair trade, but I’d grown very attached to the show — which had introduced me to so many spine-tingling treasures.
Of course, BLACK MUSEUM only consisted of those opening and closing animated sequences and the announcer’s voice — that’s all there ever was to the show. But as I remember, it was all elegantly done: the animation was colorful, imaginative, and nicely rendered — like a Halloween greeting card come to life; the music struck just the mix of menace and playfulness; and the announcer (whoever he was) read his lines with a solemnity that was perfectly in tune with those of us who took their monsters seriously.
In fact, BLACK MUSEUM had the most stylish bookends of a horror movie program I’ve ever seen — certainly classier than any of those for Bob Wilkins’ various shows, including CREATURE FEATURES, which I always found rather tacky, even as a kid. Unfortunately, I’ll probably never see those sequences again: they probably resided on a single roll of film that gathered dust on a shelf at KTXL for years until finally getting tossed away. (I would have paid $1,000 for it.) If there’s an upside to that loss, it’s that the footage probably could never live up to my memories of it — which most likely have been aggrandized by time, nostalgia and my romantic disposition.
Nevertheless, if there were a single piece of film that I could rescue from oblivion, the intro and tag for BLACK MUSEUM would be it. Others can have the lost spider sequence from KING KONG, Bela Lugosi’s misplaced screen test for FRANKENSTEIN, or even Lon Chaney’s vanished silent feature LONDON AFTER MIDNIGHT; I’d trade them all for BLACK MUSEUM. I remain hopeful that, despite the odds, one day that reel of film will resurface — perhaps in a forgotten cardboard box stored for decades in the garage of a long-retired KTXL employee. Until then, I’ll have to settle for my memories — where the doors of BLACK MUSEUM will always be open and bidding us welcome to an evening of thrills and chills.
Saturday, May 02, 2009
Friday, April 24, 2009
Thursday, April 23, 2009
Tuesday, April 21, 2009
Thursday, April 16, 2009
Sunday, April 12, 2009
Saturday, April 11, 2009
Yesterday I found out from BOB ECKMAN that Former KTVU Movie Reviewer BOB SHAW had passed away at the age of 56. It is very sad. Just 3 months ago, we had just lost BOB WILKINS and now we lost Bob Shaw. 2009 has not been a kind year. I really feel for JOHN STANLEY to lose both of his comrades so soon. Bob Shaw was the man behind the scenes at CREATURE FEATURES, providing Bob Wilkins with the appropriate information and trivia behind the movies he showed. That as well as Bob Wilkins suggestion, provided Bob Shaw as job at KTVU as Movie Reviewer, a job he held until 2007.
Though I have never met Bob Shaw in person, I did corresponded with him back in 1997 and 1998. It was back in February of 1997, when Bob Shaw did an indepth 2 part interview with Bob Wilkins for KTVU's 10:00 News. At that time, my cable provider no longer had KTVU in its lineup and I really wanted to see that interview. I wrote Bob at KTVU and in turn he wrote back and not only sent me a VHS video of that interview but about an hour of vintage CREATURE FEATURES segments and an even older KCRA footage from 1967 with Bob wilkins and Harry Martin. This was the first time I had seen the old Creature Features in years! and this was before TOM WRYSCH started selling the authorized remastered DVD's. Bob and i wrote each other with me asking questions and him answering them. I don't recall Bob having an email account at that time, and it was the old fashioned snail mail.
I have always said that it was SCOTT MOON of PLANET X MAGAZINE who was part of my inspiration to start this Blog. Well, It was Bob Shaw who was the Other Half of my Blog Inspiration and I want to say, THANK YOU VERY MUCH BOB!!! KTVU did a really good Video Memorial for Bob Shaw. Check It Out At http://www.ktvu.com/video/19154778/index.html
Friday, April 10, 2009
Sunday, April 05, 2009
Tuesday, March 31, 2009
I had a great time at the BOB WILKINS PUBLIC MEMORIAL last Sunday Evening from 5:PM-8:PM (actually lasted until about 8:45PM). There was approx. 55-60 people that attended. Finally had the chance to meet MR. LOBO, TOM WRYSCH and "SCIFI BOB" ECKMAN. Tom brought several BOB WILKINS memorbilia including the CAPTAIN COSMIC costume, the YELLOW ROCKING CHAIR Bob used on KTVU's CREATURE FEATURES and some vintage 16mm film footage of Bob Wilkins including some that haven't been seen in years or available on DVD including a really good one with ROY "The Invaders" THINNES.
I also had a chance to check out Former TOWER RECORDS founder RUSS SOLOMAN's new music/video store on Broadway street called R5 RECORDS/VIDEO as well as other Sacramento Landmarks plus doing additional research on the KTXL hostless horror show, BLACK MUSEUM, which I plan on doing a retrospective on its 40TH Anniversary on MAY 3rd. I am planning on posting more pictures from the memorial soon but for now, I have posted a picture of myself with MR. LOBO and the CAPTAIN COSMIC costume.
Sunday, March 29, 2009
Thursday, March 26, 2009
PLANET X MAGAZINE & CINEMA INSOMNIA presents THE BOB WILKINS SACRAMENTO FAN CELEBRATION on MARCH 29!
I want to remind everyone that this Sunday, March 29 from 5:PM-8:PM will be the public memorial for the Late BOB WILKINS. It will be at the corner of 17TH & I Streets. It is free. There will be refreshments. Bob's wife, SALLY and their children will be there to meet all of Bob's Northern California Fans! Also in attendance will be "Planet X Magazine owner and the official Bob Wilkins Webmaster, SCOTT MOON", "The Horror Movie TV Host of the syndicated CINEMA INSOMNIA (Based In Sacramento But Looking For An Affilate Here), MR. LOBO", "Bob Wilkins Official Archivist TOM WRYSCH" and Attorney & Former KCRA Late Night Movie Host (of CHARLIE CHAN FESTIVAL & G.W.A.T.), GEOFF WONG.
I have invited several of Bob Wilkins Former Co-workers from KTXL to attend as well as ANNALEE PENNY (and anyone else) from FOX 40 LIVE. Of all of the TV Stations that Bob has hosted, his tenure at KTXL was the longest (May 9, 1970-February 14, 1981)! All fans of Bob need to show up, It's going to be fun! We will see assorted videos of Bob as well as other memorbilia of Bob Wilkins including the Legendary CAPTAIN COSMIC costume! For More info, Check out http://www.bobwilkins.net/memorial.htm
Tuesday, March 24, 2009
Monday, March 23, 2009
Planet X Magazine & Cinema Insomnia Presents The Bob Wilkins Sacramento Fan Celebration On March 29!
This Coming Sunday (3/29) will be Bob Wilkins Public Memorial also known as THE BOB WILKINS SACRAMENTO FAN CELEBRATION. It will be held from 5:PM-8:PM at the Corner Of 17TH & I Streets. I Will Be There as well as Planet X Magazine's SCOTT MOON, Cinema Insomnia's MR. LOBO, Bob Wilkins Archivist TOM WRYSCH, Attorney And Former KCRA Late Night Movie Host GEOFF WONG and BOB WILKINS Family. I have invited several of Bob's Former KTXL TV 40 Co-Workers, which I am hoping will be there. And I Am Hoping For A Big Turnout!!!
This Will Be A Great Chance For All Of Bob Wilkins Fans To Mingle Amongst Each Other And Talk About Your Own Personal Memories Of Why Bob Wilkins Made The 1960's & 1970's More Special! This Will Be A Special Day And I Hope To See Everyone There!
Sunday, March 22, 2009
Thursday, March 19, 2009
Monday, March 16, 2009
On this evening on KCRA Channel 3, BOB WILKINS showed a English Dubbed RUSSIAN/FINNISH movie called THE DAY THE EARTH FROZE (1964) which was originally titled SAMPO (1959).
It is available on DVD from RETROMEDIA/IMAGE as part of a Double Feature with another Russian Movie, THE MAGIC VOYAGE OF SINBAD albeit in FULL FRAME (OAR was 2.35:1)
Thursday, March 12, 2009
Sunday, March 08, 2009
Tuesday, March 03, 2009
Sunday, March 01, 2009
Tuesday, February 24, 2009
Sunday, February 22, 2009
Sunday, February 15, 2009
Saturday, February 14, 2009
Today In History:
28 Years Ago On This Date, BOB WILKINS Signed Off For The Final Time At KTXL TV 40. On his show, There a a skit about KTXL Executives Cancelling Bob's Show because of the ratings. The real reason of course because of Bob spending more time with his family as well as operating his own Advertising Agency in the Bay Area. After the skit, Bob announces that this indeed his his last show on KTXL. He had left KTVU a couple years earlier. Bob had Former BIG TIME WRESTLING announcer, HANK RENNER as a guest as well as his Wife SALLY and Two Children, ROBBY and NANCY BETH. To my knowlege, This was there only appearance on Bob's Show on KTXL. (Bob's Children appeared on both KTVU's CREATURE FEATURES and CAPTAIN COSMIC shows.)
They also showed clips of Bob's Past Shows (KCRA with HARRY MARTIN, KTVU's CREATURE FEATURES and CAPTAIN COSMIC opens), but funny thing though, they never did show any clips of Bob's Old KTXL Shows? There was also Video Taped Tributes by his friends, HARRY MARTIN, GARY TOMSIC and DANA REEMS. Bob's Last KTXL Show is available on Video as well as on YOU TUBE:
Friday, February 13, 2009
Today is Friday The 13TH of February and today, NEW LINE CINEMA and PARAMOUNT PICTURES jointly releases the remake of 1980's FRIDAY THE 13TH. I'll probably not see it as I dread remakes. As for the Friday The 13TH movies, They are a mix bag. A few I like, a few I hate and a few that I can take it or leave it. There are a few that I didn't like when I first saw it but they kind of mellowed over the years. Here is my list of Favorites and Least Favorites of all the Friday The 13Th films except for the New Remake.
1.) FRIDAY THE 13TH(1980) The original of course is the best of the series. And despite popular belief, JASON was not the killer but his mother. I loved TOM SAVINI's Special Makeup Effects! And the Uncut Version was recently released on DVD.
2.) FRIDAY THE 13TH THE FINAL CHAPTER (1984) Despite its title, it was not the last in the series. Tom Savini returns to create an awesome JASON VOORHEES.
3.) FRIDAY THE 13TH PART 3 IN 3D (1982) I loved the 3D Effects and RICHARD BROOKER plays Jason and does a good job. PARAMOUNT recently released it on DVD in 3D!
4.) FRIDAY THE 13TH PART 5 A NEW BEGINNING (1985) Surprisingly this was my least favorite of the Friday The 13TH film, but it just grew with me. No Jason, but neither did the original. This was more of a Who Done It like the original and I liked the ending!
5.) FRIDAY THE 13TH PART 6 JASON LIVES (1986) Not bad. Some humor and Jason is revived as a Zombie. I still preferred JOHN SHEPARD as an Adult TOMMY JARVIS from Part 5 compared to THOM MATTHEWS, though I liked Thom in the RETURN OF THE LIVING DEAD movies.
6.) FRIDAY THE 13TH PART 2 (1981) Another one which I didn't care for in the beginning but has mellowed over the years. I like that Burlap Sack Jason. Reminds me of THE ELEPHANT MAN.
Not Bad But Not Good!
1.) FRIDAY THE 13TH PART 7 THE NEW BLOOD (1988) The only plus in this movie is the VERY AWESOME LOOKING JASON VOORHEES played by KANE HODDER who played him a record 4 Times! And the looks of this Jason is great, rates up there with Tom Savini's creations of the Original and The Final Chapter.
2.) FREDDY VS JASON (2003) A fun type of film. Long Awaited matchup between the 1980's Slashers!
3.) JASON GOES TO HELL THE FINAL FRIDAY (1993) The first NEW LINE CINEMA Jason. And you don't see Jason that much. This is more of a Supernatural Friday The 13TH Film.
1.) JASON X (2002) By far the worst Friday The 13TH Film and that includes Part 8! Absolutely Horrible!!!
2.) FRIDAY THE 13TH PART 8 JASON TAKES MANHATTAN (1989) For years, I thiught this was the worst until I saw JASON X. Boy was I wrong, but this is still a stinker!
Sunday, February 08, 2009
Saturday, February 07, 2009
Sunday, February 01, 2009
Tuesday, January 27, 2009
Sunday, January 25, 2009
Saturday, January 24, 2009
Friday, January 23, 2009
Sunday, January 18, 2009
Sunday, January 11, 2009
Saturday, January 10, 2009
On Wednesday, January 7, ROBERT GENE WILKINS passed away from complications of Alzheimers Disease at the age of 76 in a care facilty in Reno, Nevada, surrounded by his loving family.
I will truly miss Bob Wilkins. He literally made my childhood special and I thank him for that. I was born in 1962 and my first interest was in Dinosaurs. I don't know the exact year but I just loved Dinosaurs whether they were plastic figures or picture books. Then around 1968, when I was 6 years old, I was with my Dad at the HARDING WAY NEWSSTAND, and I noticed a magazine with a very interesting cover of the Alien from the movie, INVASION OF THE SAUCER MEN. That magazine was FAMOUS MONSTERS OF FILMLAND and it was Issue #54 and this was the turning point of my life. Dad bought me that magazine and it hooked me on the important Movie Monster.I can't recall when or what was my first monster movie I ever saw but it had to be around that same year of 1968. If I remember right, KCRA Channel 3 showed the old classics on Saturday Afternoons. On October 26, 1968, KTXL TV 40 signed on the air and I was there on Day One. Though at that time, the only thing monster related shown was THE OUTER LIMITS. It wasn't until the following year, that I discover BLACK MUSEUM on Saturday Nights at 8:PM on KTXL. It was a Hostless show with the classics. Also I remember watching VALLEY PLAYHOUSE on KCRA. This show was hosted by HARRY MARTIN and was on weekday afternoons on Channel 3 and occasionally he would show Horror Movies.
I recall watching TEENAGERS FROM OUTER SPACE on one particular Valley Playhouse and Harry mentioned that if you enjoyed these type of movies, that BOB WILKINS showed them every Saturday Night on KCRA. This had me intrigued. This was the first time I had heard of Bob Wilkins. Later on I had also seen ads for the show. At this time, I was always in bed around 9:PM, but I begged my parents to let me stay up to watch Bob. Dad finally said yes, but unfortunately I fell asleep and never made it up to watch Bob. I had to settle for Black Museum. While I never did have a chance to see Bob on KCRA, I did discover him when he made the move to KTXL.
While I can't pinpoint the exact date when Bob made that move from KCRA to KTXL. I know it was sometime in 1970 but not the exact date as KCRA continued to show Horror Movies on their Late Saturday Night Show when Bob took over hosting the Black Museum timeslot at KTXL. I only found this out when I was reading JOHN STANLEY's excellent book, I WAS A TV HORROR HOST, on page 49, which was a copy of an article John Stanley did on CREATURE FEATURES in the SAN FRANCISCO CHRONICLE: "In addition to the new KTVU Creature Features, Wilkins is hosting a Saturday Night Series for Channel 40 in the Sacramento Valley...".Well the article was dated JANUARY 24, 1971 and the only Saturday Night Horror Show on KTXL TV 40 was the one at 8:PM, so I finally figured that Bob must have made the jump sometime in 1970 but KCRA continued showing Horror Movies on Saturday Nights well until October of 1971, when GEOFF WONG debuted with CHARLIE CHAN THEATRE.
I do know the very first movie I saw on Bob Wilkins was a Japanese Monster Movie called THE X FROM OUTER SPACE. I still need to figure out that exact date. But from then on, it was a weekly ritual for me. Eventually KTXL moved Bob to a later time slot but still a do-able time slot for me to stay up, at 10:PM. It was a double feature but I was only able to see one movie before falling asleep. In 1973, A new phenonomen hit Stockton. CABLE TV! Unlike Cable of today with hundreds of specialty 24 hour Satellite Channels like HBO, ESPN, TBS or even THE SCI FI CHANNEL, Cable Tv was essentially a TV Antenna Service utilizing wires. We were able to pick up TV Stations from the Bay Area for the first time, Crystal Clear! My neighborhood didn't get hooked up for Cable TV until Early 1974, but I remember that day when the Cable Man installed Cable TV at our house. For years, I was tantalized by reading TV Listings for TV Stations in the Bay Area in the TV Guide. There were LOTS of Horror Movies shown on Channels such as KTVU-2 and KBHK-44. At that time, Local TV was only 6 TV Stations, KCRA-3(NBC), KVIE-6(PBS), KXTV-10(CBS), KOVR-13(ABC), KLOC-19(Religious/Spanish) and KTXL-40(Independent).
Now with Cable TV, our choices would expand. Initially, they offered KTVU-2, KQED-9, KEMO-20, and KBHK-44. Later on, they would add KRON-4, KPIX-5, KGO-7, KTSF-26, KGSC-36, KQEC-32 and others. It was cool, I was able to watch MONSTROUS MOVIE on KBHK as well as BOWERY BOYS, ABBOTT AND COSTELLO plus THE GHOUL on Friday Nights. Then there was a surprise that I never knew. On KTVU-2, I watched CREATURE FEATURES for the first time and Lo And Behold, it was hosted by none other than Bob Wilkins! How can that be, I said! He was on KTXL at the same time he was at KTVU. Was he twins? I was a little young, and I always thought Bob's show on KTXL was live but for the first time I finally realized that shows like this was taped! Now I felt like a kid in a Candy Shop. I had twice the amount of Bob Wilkins. It all depended on the movie, which was the determining factor whether I watch CREATURE FEATURES on KTVU or THE BOB WILKINS DOUBLE HORROR MOVIE on KTXL. Creature Features showed lots of the Universal Classics like FRANKENSTEIN and DRACULA but KTXL had the Newer Hammer Films as well as those interesting German Krimis or Italian Giallos. It seemed (to me anyways) that KTXL showed more of the Foreign Horror and Sci-Fi Films while KTVU showed more of the Classic Monster Movies of the 30's, 40's and 50's. Another difference between the two shows was that Bob had intermission segments during the movies he showed on KTVU while Bob's segments at KTXL were at the beginning, after the first movie and before the second and at the end. There were fewer Bob Wilkins Segments on KTXL.
Another interesting factor was that Bob had competition for Creature Features while there was none in Sacramento. Not until KMUV-31 signed on the air in 1974. KMUV had a ALL MOVIE FORMAT, showing three movies a day and repeating it three times a day. And amongst those movies were Horror Movies. It was hosted by Radio DJ, JOHNNY HYDE but it was not your typical Horror Host type show that I recall, but he did show the classics as well as non-classics three times a day, 6 times a week. I didn't have to wait every Saturday to get my Monster Movie Fix, but I always watched Bob on Saturday Nights. Had to, Bob was addicting.
One thing about Bob Wilkins, I related to him. I was a Nerd while growing up and here was this nerdish looking host showing Horror Movies! I thought we were the best combination, Little did I know that there were Hundreds, if not Thousands who were like me and related to Bob too. One aspect of the show that I will always remember, is Bob sitting on the Rocker, smoking a Cigar. It wasn't until years later (1995 to be precise in PLANET X MAGAZINE), that I found out that he did this because of his On Camera Nervousness not that it would create his own trademark. There are a lot of people that I talk to that remember the shows, but can't seem to figure out his name but will always remember the Cigar and Rocker.
Over the years, Bob's KTVU Double Feature would be split in half between two days (Friday and Saturday Nights) and his KTXL show would be reduced to one. Then I remember the shock when he announced that he was leaving Creature Features in 1979. But strangely enough, he continued on over at KTXL. For many years, I couldn't figure it out. I thought maybe Bob had a falling out with KTVU management. All of a sudden, Bob was hosting Specials over at KTVU's Independent Competitor, KBHK-44 as well as KTXL. I now figure out that this was probably to prevent friction with John Stanley who was now hosting Creature Features, plus it was only a few specials, not a regular weekly show. But it was strange seeing Bob at KBHK. Then finally, Bob left KTXL in 1981, on Valentine's Day. His last movie there was DRACULA PRINCE OF DARKNESS. Bob would come back for one more Special, The 3D showing of REVENGE OF THE CREATURE, but Bob would never return to TV 40.
On April 30, 1987, Bob Wilkins and Creature Features would return to KTVU. No, he wasn't coming back on a regular basis, Bob still had a successful advertising agency in the Bay Area. It was a One Time Special. He showed THE FOG, which unfortunately wasn't Creature Features material, but it was nice to see Bob again on the Boob Tube. The following year, Bob appeared on the KTVU 30TH Anniversary Show being interviewed by Comedian RONNIE SCHELL with a brief appearance by John Stanley. Then it wasn't until 1995 that Bob would make another appearance on TV, this time his old stomping grounds of KCRA Channel 3, but before I get to that, I want to back track a bit. After a successful career of being an ad man for his Advertising Agency (with accounts like MACY*S and Chuck-E-Cheese) in the 1980's, Then he got an offer he couldn't refuse at John Ascuaga's NUGGET Casino In Reno in 1991. Bob and Sally packed up their bags and relocated from California to Nevada to work as the Media Director. There he worked until a Heart Attack forced Bob into retirement in 1995. 1995, was also year that Scott Moon published the first issue of PLANET X MAGAZINE which was the Bob Wilkins Issue, with interview and pictures with Bob. Then later that year, Bob did a special Reunion Show on KCRA. After a 25 year absence from KCRA, he returned for a recreation of his SEVEN ATRS THEATRE including showing the first movie that Bob showed back in 1966, ATTACK OF THE MUSHROOM PEOPLE. This time, KCRA added KELLYVISION to the showing of the movie, in which it would speed up the movie during the slow parts. Bob also had as guests were GEOFF WONG, who succeeded him at KCRA and GARY TOMSIC, who worked behind the cameras at KCRA as well as filming short films on 8mm. It was really nice to see Bob again, but it wouldn't be the last.
Two years later, Bob was interviewed by his friend, BOB SHAW, on a two part interview on KTVU-2. Unfortunately by this time, my Cable System no longer carried KTVU, but I was able to call Bob Shaw at KTVU and not only did he send me a VHS video of that interview but also unedited segments from the old Creature Features show. I was in heaven. Seeing these old shows for the first time in almost 20 years. I began a letter correspondence with Bob Shaw, which inspired me to consider writing a book called BOB WILKINS:THE MAN BEHIND THE CIGAR. Unfortunately it never happened. I did lots of research but never had the time to actually do it. I also had a chance to write Bob a personal letter and in returned he sent me an autographed photo which I cherish, even today (and is on the top of this post). In 1998, I bought a Video Collection from Bob Wilkins which had segments from KTXL also.A year later, I bought THE BOB WILKINS SCRAPBOOK which was done by TOM WRYSCH who is in control of The Bob Wilkins Archives and has done many great DVD's as well as the documentary WATCH HORROR FILMS, KEEP AMERICA STRONG.
After my Dad passed away from Cancer on May 15, 2004, I was a bit depressed but I discovered Scott Moon's Excellent Bob Wilkins Website at http://www.bobwilkins.net/ and it inspired me to create this Blog. And it was Scott Moon who encouraged me to continue with this Blog. With this blog, I wanted to research a little on not only Bob Wilkins and the movies he showed. Right now, I am posting weekly program schedules of Bob's KCRA show. I'd like to do the same with both KTVU and KTXL's schedules. In addition to this, I am doing write ups of other Late Night Television programs of yesteryears as well as current happenings. Just soon after I started my Blog in 2006, I found out that Bob was suffering from Alzheimers Disease. This bit of news bummed me out. My longtime dream of meeting my childhood idol was going to disappear. I thought I would never meet him. But in 2007, Scott Moon invited me to Bob's tribute show, CREATURE FEATURES FOREVER at The Crest Theatre on MARCH 25, and I finally met my childhood idol in the flesh, so to speak. Even though the Alzheimers Disease had slowed him and he didn't really speak, he still had that twinkle in his eyes and a very special smile and John Stanley took my picture with Bob Wilkins that I still treasure today.
I had heard that Sally and Bob moved back to Sacramento from Reno in 2006, but after 2 years, Sally moved Bob to a Care Facility in Reno, where she moved also. Now Bob is gone. Initially, I was distraught but I know that He is in a better place and is no longer in pain. Sally is planning a memorial for Bob in the coming weeks. Bob Wilkins is survived by his loving wife, Sally and their beautiful children, Rob and Nancy and Son In Law Tom Fitzpatrick, Two Grandchildren and sisters. Bob, You will be missed and I am forever grateful for the impact you made in my life. No, I am not a Film Maker, Actor or working in Television but I have a successful career as a Pastry Chef at a local Retirement Community and I never got in trouble. And I have this Blog. Thanks Bob!
Thursday, January 08, 2009
Bob Wilkins passing was covered by all three TV Stations he worked at. KTXL-40 had a tribute to him on its Morning Talk Show FOX 40 LIVE just before 6:AM. It was nice and included a brief video from his KTXL years (courtesy of YOU TUBE) and a mention of my Blog. Check it out at http://www.fox40.com/pages/annalee and click on the 1/8 BOB WILKINS TRIBUTE picture to see that video segment. KCRA-3 did make mention of Bob's passing in a smaller tribute with pictures only (courtesy of SCOTT MOON's Official BOB WILKINS website) on its 6:PM News. Check out an article at its website at http://www.kcra.com/news/18442682/detail.html# I take partial credit for those two stations as I wrote them emails. And finally, KTVU did a trigute which I did not see as my Cable TV System doesn't carry KTVU anymore. Check out their article at http://www.ktvu.com/entertainment/18442919/detail.html
Edit News Flash: I noticed that KTXL put up a BOB WILKINS TRIBUTE PAGE Check it out at http://www.fox40.com/pages/bob_wilkins They did a great job. Thanks Annalee!
Wednesday, January 07, 2009
Sunday, January 04, 2009
Well a new year is upon us as well as BOB WILKINS back in 1969 on KCRA-TV Channel 3. Last week, Bob ended the year with a Martian Movie (INVADERS FROM MARS) and he begins the year with another Martian Movie, this time, THE ANGRY RED PLANET (1959) which has the coolest looking RAT-BAT SPIDER monster. This movie is directed by IB MELCHIOR and produced by SID (REPTILICUS) PINK, and stars GERALD MOHR and LES TEMAYNE
Bob also shows an episode of SECRET AGENT.
Friday, January 02, 2009
Well, it has been a day since I watched KOFY's New Horror Host Show. Yes it was bad though I still personally think ALEX BENNETT is the reigning Champ Of Horrible Horror Hosts with his SATURDAY NIGHT DEAD show on KICU TV 36 back from 1990-92. NO NAME is far from being the perfect Horror Host. Like I wrote yesterday, His Sidekick, BALROK does show promise but with the right Horror Host, Not NO NAME!
Some people have proposed boycotting watching anything on KOFY TV 20, But I only suggest Boycotting CREEPY KOFY MOVIE TIME. KOFY actually presents some pretty good Retro Programming. We still need to voice our opinion, albeit in a nice way, not negative or nasty. Go to http://www.kofytv.com/ and check out the feedback section and voice your opinion!
Olav Phillips has started a very interesting site at http://www.supportyourlocalhorrorhost.com/ Who knows? Maybe The Bay Area will get a TRUE HORROR HOST?
Thursday, January 01, 2009
Unlike a lot of people who badmouth this show even before it was aired made me angry. Why denounce a show you haven't seen? I know there are a lot of fans of MR. LOBO who are mad, and I don't blame them. They emailed and called KOFY requesting CINEMA INSOMNIA and MR. LOBO himself had talks with KOFY but in the end, KOFY opted for a Localized Show with a Former Radio DJ, who just don't know how to host a Horror Show. Yes he can get drunk and crack a few dirty jokes, but he is not a Horror Host. However, his Demonic Cohost, BALROK, has potential, but Not With NO NAME.
And those Guests On the VERY FIRST SHOW? Let's see, there was a local Ghostbuster named TOMMY. He was NUTS! Yes, BOB WILKINS has had his share of WEIRD GUESTS, but at least they were ENTERTAING WEIRD GUESTS! And that Stand Up Comic name ALEX KOLL? I literally gagged on those jokes. Then there was the SHOWGIRLS Strip..... err...I mean Dancer named WEDNESDAY. That segment doesn't belong on a Horror Hosted Show. And finally COUNT BLAGula. Don't care for that type of music.
All In All, A very disappointing show. The movies they are showing are geared for 40 year Plus Baby Boomers, while the Host Segments are geared for the Generation X'ers. They both clash. Now if they were showing Newer Movies, That would be one thing, but then again, I wouldn't be watching it. But I am torn at the thought that if this show fails, Then other TV Stations wouldn't be interested in bringing in a show like CINEMA INSOMNIA. Will I see this show again? Probably not, as most of their movies are in my DVD Collection, however if they show something I might not have and it is not available on DVD, I just might, but I would fast forward through the host segments. But I Did Give The Show A Chance. I Didn't Jump To Conclusions Like Everyone Else!