DARKMATTERS - The Mind of Matt

You met me at a very strange time in my life...

Read my novel: Complete Darkness

Listen to the PODCAST I co-host: Hosts in the Shell

Sunday, April 21, 2024

Matt finds The Heart of Winter and meets Shona Kinsella

The Heart of Winter

Shona Kinsella (@shona_kinsella)

Reviewed by Matt Adcock (@Cleric20

"Suddenly, stepping out of nowhere, two wolves appeared between the stones. They were huge, bigger than any wolf Brigit had ever seen. One was black and the other white, and both stood as tall as her shoulders. They both growled deep in their chests, lips pulled back to bare teeth that looked as if they could easily crush bone."

Here is something wonderful - a tale of gods and celtic life, Scottish and Irish mythology fuse to create an adventure that Kinsella embues with a passionate beating heart and a fascination for the 'humaness' behind deities who are characters caught up in this powerful story.

The main protagonist is Brigit - a strong female hero for our times, her destiny seemingly set for her befire she takes it into her own hands. When faced with a forced marriage to Aengus, god of Summer, she flees into the highlands in search of the Cailleach, the Queen of Winter. There, she hopes to learn how to live on her own terms, without the need for a man to speak for her, but can she persuade the Cailleach that she is worthy? 

The Heart of Winter blazes a trail with a strong female lead, the plot is intricate and engaging - written with a clear descriptive style that gives plenty of room for emotions to unspool and much thought provoking material for readers to ponder concepts around being between tested, finding your destiny and believing in yourself. This is fantasy with real heart, and it's well worth your time.

I had the chance to ask the author Shona (who is a British Fantasy Award-nominated author) some questions so you can get to know her better.


If you were granted the powers of a master magic wielder what would be the first thing you did? 

Shona: I would make it so that everyone experienced empathy, especially those in power. They would have to make decisions based on what they believed to be best for everyone, not just the few. 

Matt: What is the scariest thing you’ve ever read or watched in a book/film of any genre? 

Shona: I love horror in all it's forms, but I don't really scare that way. One of the most stressful things I've seen though was a scene in the TV series Hannibal, with Mads Mikkelsen, where Hannibal and Jack Crawford are fighting in the kitchen. It's brutal and beautiful all at once and very powerful. 

Matt: If you were hired to throw a parade of any scale or theme through the centre of London what type of parade would it be? 

Shona: All things gothic 

Matt: You are blessed with the ability to grant one wish - what does that look like for you, and whose wish would you grant? 

Shona: I have a very dear friend whose excellent book is out on sub just now. If I could grant one wish, I would grant their wish to find the right home for their book. 

Matt: Who or what inspires you most (can be living or dead)? 

Shona: I don't think there is one thing that inspires me most. I'm constantly inspired, by my kids, but the way the sunlight catches the hills, by music, by something I read, or something I saw on a documentary. The wonderful SFFH writing community is a regular source of inspiration. 

Matt: There’s a masked assailant with a gun to your head, who is most likely to be under the mask? 

Shona: Probably one of my kids telling me to step away from the laptop and do something fun with them. 

Matt: What is the meaning of life? 

Shona: To find joy where you can and leave the world a little better than you found it. 

Matt: What was the best gift you’ve ever been given? 

Shona: Friendship. 

Matt: If you could create a sidekick familiar – what would it be able to do for you? 

Shona: Supply me with coffee and chocolate as and when required. 

Matt: What would you like written on your tombstone? 

Shona: She was kind.

Thanks Shona!!

Out of a potential 5, you have to go with a Darkmatters:


(4.5 - Excellent fantasy that packs real heart


>>> Imagine a world where the earth is becoming hell?

Click banner below to find out in my dark sci-fi novel 

(now becoming a comic too)...


Monday, April 08, 2024

Pageturners review and Pat Mills interview

Pageturners – How to write iconic stories   

Pat Mills (@PatMillsComics)   

Reviewed by Matt Adcock (@Cleric20)   

I have been a fan of Pat Mills’ comic creations for many years – from the iconic 2000AD itself writing characters Judge Dredd, Nemesis The Warlock and Slaine The Horned God – plus more recently Dr Who 'Starbeast' he is rightly venerated as one of the all-time greats.   

So when I saw that he’d written a guide to writing successful comic stories, I had to check it out. 

And oh man, Pageturners is an absolute goldmine of honest, excellent information and advice – I’d go so far as to say that it is a ‘must read’ for anyone even remotely thinking about creating comic!   

“In classical times the Muses are worshipped as the Triple Goddess. In modern times, a muse is defined as a person or supernatural force that provides artistic inspiration.  I would describe her as a supernatural force because she often acts independently in a way that cannot be explained by scientists. Because they are so threatened by the irrational, they will dismiss the idea of her as fanciful nonsense.” 

Mills is a big believer in Muses – and the way he explains the way they work, prompt and interact with writers and creators, I think I’m in agreement (and will be actively courting mine!)… 

There is so much good stuff here, from actual scripts reproduced with his notes and thinking process behind them, through to how to best submit work and to who.  

There are invaluable tips for what to expect from or ask for when working with artists, editors and writers, the whole of the comic-making process is explored and laid bare.   I’ve never read such a frank, useful and open account, Mills writes this as part journal – recounting his exploits from as far back as his school days where an evil teacher became his nemesis. 

I will be referring back to this book as I venture forward with my comic creation and already feel energised and inspired by what Mills was able to achieve and how honest he is about what didn’t work out for him.   If you write or make comics, you should stop reading this and order Pageturners right now (here’s a handy link:   PAGETURNERS   )   

I had the joy of getting to ask Pat some Q’s and here is what he said (it's fair to say he's NOT a fan of the Catholic Church :)) :   

Matt: If you were granted the powers of a master magic wielder who or what would be your nemesis? 


Patt: Undoubtedly the Catholic Church. Without getting too esoteric here, I think my life purpose has always been to ‘challenge’ them. So they had to harm me in order to see them as the adversary, my nemesis 

 This is likely to inform other answers 



Matt: What is the scariest thing you’ve ever read or watched in a book/film of any genre? 


Patt: Something Wicked This Way Comes - book and film - by Ray Bradbury. It’s childhood challenged by absolute evil 



Matt: If you were hired to throw a parade of any scale or theme through the centre of London what type of parade would it be? 


Patt: A parade of people who should be in Hell. So lots of Catholic Bishops and Popes. And hypocrites and establishment mass murderers. 

 I feature the parade in Requiem 12 in a huge treble page spread so that’s very much on my mind. These people need to be identified and scorned 



Matt: You are blessed with a supernatural power - what does that look like for you? 


Patt: It would be writing - I regard my abilities as a gift of the Muse (the triple Goddess) and I have to do what she orders, as described in my Pageturners 




Matt: Who or what inspires you most (can be living or dead)? 


Patt: The enemy: the Catholic Church. In particular Catholic Knights. It’s not just Torquemada in Nemesis, you’ll see the Knights turn up in many of my stories. 


Matt: There’s a masked assailant with a gun to your head, who is most likely to be under the mask? 



Patt: One of the various Catholic school teachers I came up against as a kid 



Matt: What is the meaning of life? 



Patt: To recognise your life mission and fulfil it 





Matt: What was the best gift you’ve ever been given? 


Patt: Seeing Buffy St Marie live on my birthday 



Matt: If you could create a sidekick familiar – what would it be able to do for you? 



Patt: Back my intuition and confirm I’m going in the right direction 



Matt: What would you like written on your tombstone? 


Patt: I got some of the bastards. I wish I could have nailed them all. 


Out of a potential 5, you have to go with a Darkmatters:


(5 - Essential Reading for all writers, especially comic creators!

INFO: Pat Mills is known as The Godfather of British comics. His most famous creations are probably Charley’s War and 2000AD, featuring Judge Dredd. Loved for his fast-paced action, compelling villains and flawed heroes, he always delivers a subversive punch and thought-provoking ideas in his comics, novels and non-fiction. Pat’s currently working on an exciting new comic: Space Warp. 
Read more of his stuff at: www.millsverse.com

>>> Imagine a world where the earth is becoming hell?

Click banner below to find out in my dark sci-fi novel 

(now becoming a comic too)...


Sunday, January 28, 2024

DIY BOOK PROMO - Dan Klefstad - review n interview


DIY Book Promo 

Dan Klefstad (@danklefstad

Reviewed by Matt Adcock (@Cleric20

“My advice is geared toward un-agented authors like me, self-published authors, and even those published by the Big Five who are shocked at how little the company budgeted to promote their book.”

As an author, I can vouch that the world is stacked with a wealth of scoundrels who promise to help promote your book and bring you vast sales, all you have to do is erm, pay them and then sit back and become both famous and rich… 

It does kind of beg the question as to why these folks are still sending unsolicited emails and messages to authors and not kicking back and enjoying the millions they must have earned in order to be able to prove their methods work? 

You might even be wary of those publishing self-help books that will revolutionize your sales I hear you cry, and that’s fair, but amidst the ton of charlatans and opportunists, there are occasionally good folks actually trying to help. I believe Dan Klefstad is one of the good guys and DIY Book Promo is a tome that might just change your life as a writer if you’re prepared to put in the work and try some of the advice proffered. 

Is Dan a millionaire, world-famous household name? Not yet maybe, but his friendly, fast-paced book is worth a read as he shares all he learned during his 30-year broadcasting career, plus the three-year campaign for his novel, Fiona's Guardians (Darkmatters Review here). 

Authors can be shy at doing the promotion for their work, some might dabble with a little social media, others might arrange a book signing or the like but in this book, Dan gives quality advice about pitching media interviews, performing well in front of the mic, and how to share interviews so as to get wider exposure. He also talks about co-branding with indie bookstores, and which reviewers to pitch and which ones to avoid, it’s good stuff, even if you’re doing OK in sales I firmly believe that there is always more you can learn. 

My own promo journey for Complete Darkness has included getting artists to come up with their interpretations of the characters which I put on art cards and handed out at events. This strategy isn’t free but it did yield hundreds of pre-orders so proved very cost-effective – and led to the book now being turned into a graphic novel (but that is another story)… But we’re here to talk about Dan – and it’s great to read him share how to get your book adapted, pull off the right stunt, and how to grab surprise opportunities and best of all perhaps - never pay for promotion again. I know Dan as we share a publisher – the mighty Burton Mayers Books – so I got to ask him some questions that will help you get to know the man whose advice is being offered here. 

Dan says “In DIY Book Promo, I aim to help you find readers using free tools like email and social media. I share everything I've learned during the three-year marketing campaign for my novel, Fiona's Guardians. DIY Book Promo is also the title of my speaking engagements (in-person and virtual) at writer's conferences and with author groups.”

And you know what – I really enjoyed reading his thoughts, his experiences and I’ll certainly be putting a lot of what I read in DIY Book Promo into action!? 

"would you buy a book from this man?"

Here’s the background interview: 

Matt: Biggest joy so far as an author? 

Dan: Definitely seeing my vampire novel get adapted. For those who don't know, the all-professional acting company, Artists' Ensemble Theater, adapted my novel, Fiona's Guardians, for their Mysterious Journey podcast. It's available everywhere and it is excellent. (https://open.spotify.com/episode/1y0LNMg3zhHSi1ZdjKmkaB
This podcast made it easier to imagine further adaptations, and I've been working with a director/screenwriter to produce a short film based on my book. 

Matt: What's the best marketing of someone else’s book you’ve ever seen? 

Dan: That's a tough one to answer because I've seen so many examples of lost or squandered potential -- including for books published by the Big Five. One, however, stands out for me and that's the campaign for Gone Girl. The trailer really pulls you in and makes you ask, "What is the book about? What IS this book?" Haven't seen a better one before or since that novel came out in 2012.

Matt: What does success look like to you as an author? 

Dan: You mean something other than a villa on Lake Como, Italy? Ha ha, just putting that out there. Manifesting... Seriously, I think it's not too far-fetched to imagine another adaptation of Fiona's Guardians. I want a streaming series. I want it to be high quality, and beautifully shot and acted. I'd like to see it in my lifetime but will die quite happy knowing it's in the pipeline for others to enjoy. 

Matt: Building on that, how many sales do you think is a good achievement for an indie author? 

Dan: Allow me to suggest that the number of copies sold is less important than who reads your book. Do you have readers who enjoyed your book so much they took the time to write you a note saying they can't wait for the sequel? Do you have readers who recommend your title for their book club? Do you have one fan willing to walk around a book festival waving a copy of your book, telling everyone they should read it? And let's not forget: There's always a chance that someone will recommend it to a film or TV producer. That possibility may be low but it's never zero. I don't care if ten copies get sold or 10,000. What matters is who opens it and who stays with it to the final page. 

Matt: So what is your favourite vampire book and film? 

Dan: Let the Right One In by John Ajvide Lindqvist. He also wrote the screenplay for the 2008 film version, which is one of my favourite vampire flicks. 

Matt: Thanks Dan – all the very best with DIY Book Promo!! 

If you’re interested and want to preorder the book you can here: https://www.waterstones.com/book/diy-book-promo/dan-klefstad/9781739367541 

AND – if you’ve got a question you’d like to ask Dan, or just hear him explain some of the promo itself he will be speaking at the Society Of Authors Hertfordshire Group which I Chair on 13th Feb – here’s the link to register for free: https://www2.societyofauthors.org/event/hertfordshire-writers-hybrid-meet-up-130224/

Out of a potential 5, you have to go with a Darkmatters:


(4.5 - Lots of strong advice, and insights from Dan!

>>> Imagine a world where the earth is becoming hell?

Click banner below to find out in my dark sci-fi novel 

(now becoming a comic too)...


Thursday, December 28, 2023



Top Ten Films 2023 

by Matt Adcock (@Cleric20)


10. Barbie 

I’m a Barbie girl, in a Barbie world and it’s more than ‘Kenough’ for me!! This was a cracking fun time delivering on a kooky premise and making an important point for female empowerment in the process. As a Snyder fan - I even enjoyed being called out by the sharp screenplay :) Gosling (can’t wait for him in The Fall Guy in ’24) was exceptional - channeling Kenergy sufficient to become the answer to the world’s renewable energy needs! Robbie was pretty much perfect in the lead, this is a film everyone should see - and it was a delight to see girls standing up and applauding such a rousing manifesto!

9. Oppenheimer 

The other half of ‘Barbenheimer’ was something completely different - but just an incredible, challenging experience to witness. Seeing Oppenheimer and Einstein's 1947 conversation where they express the belief that they had indeed started a chain reaction that would destroy the world is a chilling prophecy that we all live in the shadow of. Visually Oppenheimer is a tour-de-force, and the cast are exceptional. Nolan creates films for the ages and this is a worthy addition to his incredible body of work. If you want to be shaken and to ponder humanity’s capacity for self-destruction then this megaton blast will hit the spot…

8. El Conde 

Possibly the biggest surprise of the year - El Conde ( literally 'The Count') is a Chilean super black comedy horror. I stumbled upon this one day when feeling unwell and director Pablo Larraín cheered my right up with this incredibly unlikely winner. Featuring one of the best Margaret Thatcher cameos ever this satire portrays Chilean dictator Augusto Pinochet as a 250-year-old vampire seeking death. But his scheming family are after the Dictator’s wealth and so when an eager vampire-hunting nun turns up - chaos ensues… You’ll laugh out loud, you’ll be a bit freaked out, and if you were around in the ‘80s you’ll believe it might be based on a true story!?


7. Rebel Moon 

Zack Snyder is back - and he’s forged a whole new sci-fi universe!! Visually stunning and rip-roaring fun, When a colony on the edge of the galaxy finds itself threatened by the armies of the tyrannical Darth Vader-alike Regent Balisarius, they dispatch a young woman Kora (not Rey) with a mysterious past to seek out warriors from neighbouring planets to help them take a stand. Rebel Moon is a stunning sci-fi epic that delivers on almost every level - Zack Snyder has crafted a visually spectacular and emotionally engaging story that takes us to an alternate galaxy far, far away. There are plenty of Easter eggs - not least in the homages to Star Wars, but this is the start of something darker, harder and cooler and I can’t wait for the extended Snyder Cut and part 2!!


6. Maestro 

Maestro is a towering and fearless love story chronicling the lifelong relationship between Leonard Bernstein (Exquisitely played by Bradley Cooper - who also directs) and Felicia Montealegre (the always incredible Carey Mulligan). Capturing the genius music creator and the whirlwind that affects everyone caught in his aura. Similar to his last film ‘A Star Is Born’, Cooper shows that he is a master of depicting relationships of the rich and famous, dark underbelly and all. Come for the excellent storytelling, stay for the amazing music and fascinating plot.


5. Dream Scenario 

What would you do if you started showing up in people’s dreams? Cue Nic Cage as Paul Matthews - a forgettable wannabe author and researcher who finds his life turned upside down when millions of strangers suddenly start seeing him in their dreams. But what starts as a quirky oddity that makes him famous, soon gets creepy when his nighttime appearances take a nightmarish turn, he's forced to navigate the consequences of everyone fearing him… This is super creative and genuinely funny idea that works - in large part thanks to Cage who is on stellar form.


4. Sisu 

During the last days of World War II, a solitary prospector - Aatami Korpi - crosses paths with some nasty Nazis on a scorched-earth retreat in northern Finland. When the soldiers decide to steal his gold, they quickly discover they just tangled with no ordinary miner and maximum righteous carnage ensues. Sisu feels like a Mad Max prequel, the level of violence is OTT but the Nazis deserve it all and Jorma Tommila delivers a memorable performance in the lead. Full jaw-dropping, whoop-out-loud comic book action a go-go!

 3. Killers of the Flower Moon 

Films don’t come much more impressive than this American epic Western crime drama film directed and produced by Martin Scorsese, he also co-wrote based on the 2017 non-fiction book by David Grann. Packed with some of the best actors around - Leonardo DiCaprio plays Ernest Burkhart, who along with De Niro and a fantastic turn by Lily Gladstone bring some incredibly watchable 3+ hours of riveting crime-em-up drama.

 2. Saltburn 

Full metal intoxication and fixation/obsession writ large - deviously delivered by Emerald ‘Promising Young Woman’ Fennell. The plot sees poor working-class Oliver (Barry Keoghan) taken under the posh wing of Felix, a rich student, who invites him over to his estate, Saltburn for the summer. When a series of horrifying events engulf Felix's family - things really might not be all they seem. This is a dreamy, twisted fever-inducing mystery, that will drop shocks and laughs in equal measure. Take a visit to Saltburn, you might come away changed!?


1. Infinity Pool 

Following up on his excellent Possessor Uncut Brandon Cronenberg brings a new horror trip that absolutely blew me away. Gruesome and daring, mind-bending and challenging - Infinity Pool is machine tooled to excite, disgust, and titillate, all at once… Not for the faint of heart or narrow of mind - not much can prepare you for a dip in this freaky, scary, and brilliant flick - Mia Goth is utterly fantastic in an iconic role and Infinity Pool is a guaranteed cult classic for the ages.

Read my review of INFINITY POOL

Honourable mentions: Spiderman - Across The Spiderverse, Mission Impossible - Dead Reckoning, Godzilla minus 1, Thanksgiving, Bottoms, Taylor Swift: The Eras Tour, The Killer, The Royal Hotel, Totally Killer, Gran Turismo, Guardians of the Galaxy 3, Dungeons & Dragons: Honor Among Thieves. 

>>> Imagine a world where the earth is becoming hell?

Click below to find out in my dark sci-fi novel...


Sunday, December 03, 2023

There must be Angels playing with my heart - ANGELS review




Rachel Churcher (@Rachel_Churcher) 


Reviewed by Matt Adcock (@cleric20)

‘My blood runs cold, My memory has just been sold, My Angel in the centerfold’ sang the J. Giles Band in 1981 – I was reminded of that song when I read Angels.


Billed as “The LGBTQ+ YA story you've been waiting for: friendship, identity, attraction, disasters ... and finding your wings.”


Angels are a fascinating part of legend. Humans have recorded accounts of angels living among us for as long as we can remember – from those of biblical fame such as Gabriel in the New Testament and the Angel of Death in the Old, these are beings ‘shaped in the image of God’ – a little higher than us mortals and usually packing at least one pair of wings.


In Rachel Churcher’s new angel-em-up, they don't have powers, but they do have wings, wings which they tend to keep to themselves until one breaks ranks and becomes a famous model ‘Kane’ and from then on, all bets are off.

Meet 16-year-old Mel Abbott – your usual off-the-pegged young woman, she well remembers the day she saw Kane's taboo-shattering billboard. A beautiful model showing his wings on Oxford Street, on a photo as tall as a building.

She’s understandably in love with this Adonis, her bedroom filled with posters of his chiseled abs and eagle’s wings – so she’s overwhelmed when she gets the chance to meet him in the heavenly flesh. Alas, it’s not too much of a spoiler to say things don’t get well and a chain of events is set in motion that will have major consequences. Can she find a way to free herself from his shadow, and what will her future hold?

Angels is a pretty standard coming-of-age story, it’s a celebration of friendship and desire, heartbreak and identity. I try not to read many young adult novels as I generally like my fiction a bit darker and fiercer but for an interesting premise, I’ll give them a go. 


It's an easy read, Churcher writes in a nice, relaxed manner and explores themes of friendship, identity, attraction, and finding one's place in the world. 


If this all sounds like your bag, or a decent Christmas present for the YA reader in your life then grab a copy and connect with your inner 16-year-old girl!, and find your wings along the way.

Out of a potential 5, you have to go with a Darkmatters:


(3.5 - Angelic coming-of-age heartbreaker

>>> Imagine a world where the earth is becoming hell?

Click banner below to find out in my dark sci-fi novel 

(now becoming a comic too)...


Friday, October 06, 2023

HOUSE Franchise - You're Invited

HOUSE Franchise

Long term fan, first time reviewing this whole series - Matt Adcock (@Cleric20)

Remember the heady days of 1986? I was 15 and the world was generally a more innocent place. Not having watched many scary films (due to strict religious parents) I would however often spend ages checking out the lurid video covers in the local video store. One cover stood out - HOUSE it said, and it had a disembodied hand pressing a doorbell. It was excellent and I knew I had to check it out...

Oh boy - it immediately became one of my all-time favs! The series continued with 3 sequels of, erm, varying quality, but a franchise was born and for me - this is one I'd LOVE to see a big-budget reimagining of in the style of Hellraiser??

'Don't come alone'

HOUSE (15)

Dir. Steve 'Friday the 13th parts 2 and 3' Miner

"It won Roger. It tricked me. I didn't think it could, but it did. It's going to trick you too, Roger. This house knows everything about you. Leave while you can."

Getting a horror comedy right can be a tough ask. For every classic like Gremlins which is near perfect, there are a thousand direct-to-TV efforts that are neither funny or scary!? HOUSE, is very much on the spectrum but happily nearer the classic end even though it has plenty of cheap thrills, it has some genuinely disturbing bits and some great humour.

Superb practical effects, a genuinely fun, off-the-wall plot, and some unforgettable set pieces make HOUSE an absolute '80s gem. It tells the tale of Roger Cobb (William 'Tommy from Carrie' Katt) a struggling writer who inherits a haunted house - it's great and I fully recommend it if you've somehow never come across it!

'Just when you thought it was safe...'

HOUSE II: The Second Story (15)

Dir.  Ethan 'Children of the Corn V: Fields of Terror' Wiley

"There it is. Looks like you've got some kind of alternate universe in there or something."

How do you follow up such a winner that the first HOUSE? Well how about going 'full gonzo' with undead cowboys and prehistoric creatures? Yep HOUSE II (love the tag line 'the second story') might not have the scary factor of the original but it sure is a fun romp. It even spawned a Marvel comic!!
'Marvel tie-in comic!'

HOUSE II is a great fun watch, it's much less of a horror film but that doesn't diminish the outlandish goings on. And it maintains some great humour too - think Texas Chainsaw 2 and you'll know the kind of change of pace to expect...

HOUSE III: The Horror Show (18)

Dirs. James 'Jason X' Isaac & David 'Night Freaks' Blyth

"All that did was give me a hard on!"

How is it that often two very similar films come out in close proximity to each other in this case 1989? HOUSE III: The Horror Show - or just 'The Horror Show' in some countries has the same plot as Wes Craven's SHOCKER - serial killer uses electricity from electric chair to beat death and return for revenge... I have some time for both of these films but can't help thinking that if they creative teams had teamed up (e.g. Craven directing H3) we may have had one great horror film instead of two ok ones?

'hey the alien guys want to have a word with us for copyright'

HOUSE III at least has a fun cast with the excellent Lance 'Bishop from Aliens' Henricksen starring as the detective trying to stop the undead killer Max 'Meat Cleaver' Jenke (Brion James). There's very little 'House-ness' in this flick which is a shame but it's fine as a stand-alone '80s slasher. It's not very funny apart from the late '80s fashion though.

HOUSE IV: The Repossession (15)

Dir. Lewis Abernathy (this is the only film he directed)

" There! No more anchovies! "

When there is not more room in hell, cash-in sequels will walk the earth... Ah HOUSE 4, a very mixed bag of not much fun and very little scares. If HOUSE III focused on being a horror film, HOUSE 4 tries to mix up all that has gone before - even bringing back Roger from the original for a cameo.
Best this about this lamest entry of the franchise (which probably killed it off)? PIZZA MAN!! Yes Kane Hodder himself - he's played Jason Voorhees in Friday the 13th flicks and Victor Crowley in the Hatchet films but HOUSE 4 will always be remembered for his playing an evil pizza...

'did someone say extra crispy?'

And so the HOUSE films limp to a sadly unsatisfying ending (so far) but I for one live in hope of HOUSE 5 coming and blowing the doors off the horror comedy world one day :)

Out of a potential 5, you have to go with a Darkmatters:

HOUSE 4 öö

(Overall - see them all but maybe in reverse order so you finish with the orginal and best??!

>>> Imagine a world where the earth is becoming hell?

Click banner below to find out in my dark sci-fi novel 

(now becoming a comic too)...


Sunday, October 01, 2023

Killtopia Volumes 1 to 5 Review


Killtopia Volumes 1 to 5 Review

Dave Cook (writer @Davescook), Craig Paton @CraigPaton & Clark Bint @clarkbintart (art) 
BHP Comics @BHPComics
Reviewed by Matt Adcock (@Cleric20)
Killtopia is a cyberpunk genre-defining comic book series that delivers a thrilling and visually stunning journey through a dystopian cyberpunk world where life is blighted by the ‘rot’ - a nanobot plague caused by robots. This is a near-future world - the action based around ‘Wreckers’ - humans who hunt robots (and also fight each other to the death in the celebratory ‘Wreckfest’ events. Without spoiling the plot - let me just say that Cook brings a megaton of creativity and a cool tale that takes you over the edge of your seat from start to finish.

Now the first set - spanning five volumes - is complete and after re-reading them I can confirm that they combine some gripping storytelling, intricate world-building, and breathtaking artwork to create an unforgettable experience that will stand as a cult classic into the future.

Volume 1: Setting the Stage
The first volume of Killtopia introduces a future where technology and the human condition have melded in complex ways. Dave Cook and Craig Paton immediately grab you by the eyeballs and smash you face fries into the gritty, neon-soaked streets of Killtopia, a city overrun by nanotech-infected creatures. The protagonist, Shinji, and his AI companion, Crash, embark on a quest that will shape the fate of their world. It’s a riveting start to a series filled with mystery and intrigue.


Volume 2: Down the rabbit hole

The world of Killtopia gets explored and the true nature of Shinji’s mission crosses with famous Wrecker Stiletto. The character development is rich, and it’s easy to get emotionally invested in the struggles and motivations of the players. The kick-ass action sequences really deliver and are not only visually captivating but also serve to drive the plot forward.

Volume 3: Unlikely allies as the world goes to hell

As Crash tries to stop the ‘rot’ things suddenly get a lot worse - the stakes keep escalating and here we transition from Paton to Bint on the art duties which works really well. Cook’s twisted tale adds layers and spins a compelling and detailed plot up to a fascinating point - how will this rollercoaster end?

Volume 4:Epic confrontations

Volume 4 delivers the build-up to an epic showdown, unexpected alliances, and jaw-dropping revelations move things to a fascinating endgame. The artwork continues to impress, with the cyberpunk aesthetic providing a visually striking backdrop to the unfolding drama. Throughout the series, writer Dave Cook weaves a complex narrative that delves into themes of identity, morality, and the consequences of unchecked technological advancement. Killtopia is not just a thrilling adventure but also a thought-provoking exploration of the human condition in a world dominated by AI and cybernetics.

Volume 5: In conclusion

The Killtopia trip comes to a gratifying end. This is a must-read for fans of cyberpunk and dystopian graphic novels, even if I felt the ending wasn’t quite as strong as the build-up. But overall with its compelling characters, intricate plot, and stunning artwork, this series offers a captivating journey through a future that is both haunting and enthralling. By the time you finish volume 5, you’ll be left pondering this dark tale as you wake yourself from such an immersive world.

Out of a potential 5, you have to go with a Darkmatters:



>>> Imagine a world where the earth is becoming hell?

Click banner below to find out in my dark sci-fi novel 

(now becoming a comic too)...


Saturday, September 09, 2023

Joey Valence & Brae PUNK TACTICS (Review)



Joey Valence & Brae (@JoeyValence & @heybrae

Reviewed by Matt Adcock (@cleric20

“Ooh, goddamn, I drop bombs I was born with the brains and the brawn I am the king and you're just a pawn Who's got the high ground now, Obi-Wan?” 
Punk Tactics 

Here is the future – Hip Hop Joey Valence & Brae (JvB) bring their underground sound (which is basically a most excellent Beastie Boys reimagining) and boy is it fun! So it appears that Mike D, Ad-Rock and MCA (RIP) have inspired two swaggering and nerdy spiritual go-getters and far from being talentless cash-in merchants, these guys are great!! 

I found JvB because the artist Jimmy Hobbs who I worked with on my comic 'What Waits For Us In The Dark [Matter]' has been doing the single cover artwork for the band!? Then I had the joy of seeing JvB live last month at their – to date – largest headline gig and they brought their ‘A-game’ – appetites were suitably whetted for their debut album. 

What Waits comic has exclusive JvB artwork by Jimmy on the back>>>

And here is how PUNK TACTICS plays… 

Opening with the title track PUNK TACTICS the stage is set for a rampant good time. Spitting bars with videogame references and some clever wordplay, this is what the world needs right now. Next up is DROP ‘I came, I saw. We came to drop bombs’ a saucy little dance number, followed up DELINQUENT (TEEN TITAN) which is a love letter to comic books ‘…gliding through the city, mask on, Green Goblin. I'm a villain, you a sidekick, Robin’ – it will make your inner nerd grin. 

Coming in hot then we have the one-two punch of WATCH YO STEP and STARTAFIGHT which are all frenetic energy, sneaker namechecks and dance beats. STARTAFIGHT’s ‘Yeah, we get delinquent. Run it, run it, run it, run it like a reprint’ really should be on the soundtrack to the next Streetfighter game… Finishing the violent section is the rocking KILL BILL. 

The duo slip in an Eminem INTERMISSION and then it’s time for poptastic GUMDROP before the laid-back DANCE NOW which is classy and then the smooth vibes of RN ‘feeling good right now’. Nice. The incredible TANAKA 2 comes next with guest vocals from Logic and this is a stone-cold killer track. ‘Non-Stop, Denzel. Heavyweight, Rocky, barbell. Oh, you slick? I'm John Wick. Rambo how I swing the sticks’… 

Personal fav HOOLIGANG kicks the doors in as a follow-up and it’s epic! Man, it was great live too – and has been my ‘drive too fast to’ track since it came out. Before you escape you must also face the beating that will leave you looking like a STREET PIZZA. The fun descriptions of pizza toppings showcase JvB at their most playful. 

Finally, the majestically over-the-top CLUB SANDWICH has been likened to No Sleep Till Brooklyn and that’s not an unfair comparison – it finishes off the album in fine style. 

Wherever the Joey Valence & Brae story goes next, PUNK TACTICS is a great debut album that lays down a marker for a wickedly talented couple of guys who hopefully will take the world by storm…

Out of a potential 5, you have to go with a Darkmatters:



>>> Imagine a world where the earth is becoming hell?

Click below to find out in my dark sci-fi novel...