The Dork Forest 435 – Wyatt Gray


Tentacles. Unknown monsters summoned. DREAD. I’m NOT talking about summoning Wyatt Gray (@wyattsgray www.wyattgraycomedy.com) who is a perfectly nice man who loves him some HP Lovecraft. I try to keep my san points up. Let us all hear the CALL OF CTHULHU. Enjoy.

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Standup Comic and willing to play Beyonce’s crazy white aunt… this podcast has been around since 2006… the episodes here are the “new” pre-recorded goodness. Previous 200 eps archived. Enjoy.

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3 thoughts on “The Dork Forest 435 – Wyatt Gray

  1. Hey Jackie!

    I listened to your podcast with Wyatt Gray, and while he was somewhat correct on most things, there were a few components of Lovecraft’s work that either weren’t touched on or didn’t really translate through your conversation that I’d like to touch on.

    Lovecraft kind of perfected a new style of horror that we haven’t let go of yet. This needs a little historical context.

    The “masters of horror” like Bram Stoker, Mary Shelly, and Poe wrote about monsters that were explained. To illustrate, Bram Stoker’s Dracula was written, at least in the first part, as found fiction, through the diary of Jonathan Harker. Throughout the story, through the context of Harker’s, Van Helsing, and the other characters’ point of view we discover Dracula’s motivation, the background, a full explanation of his abilities, his weaknesses, and who he is and what he wants. In essence, you learn everything there is to know about a monster, and he’s coming for you!

    Lovecraft’s creations were different. Lovecraft’s monsters were ancient and unknowable. They did not have understandable motivations. For example, Cthulhu (a name which, like all Lovcraftian nomenclature, was never meant to be spoken with human speech organs, but in an interview H.P. stated that the “Cth” was one single sound made all at the same time, so that the pronunciation more resembles “KTHOOL-oo” instead of “kuh-THOO-loo”) was an ancient alien priest who is dead who will wake up one day and that is all that is known about him. His voice reaches out to artists and creatives, not because he is actively seeking them out, but because in their dreams, creatives are more attuned to the subconscious, where Cthulhu’s voice is. He’s not speaking to them directly, they’re picking up a faint radio signal in their sleep. In the Lovecraft universe, the existence of humanity is mostly irrelevant. To Cthulhu, humans are only slightly more regarded than ants. The Old Ones (of which Cthulhu is a priest) came from the depths of deep space millions of eons ago, they’ve been here longer than anything that we have ever recorded or heard of, and the entire universe is theirs to do with as they please.

    The most important thing about Lovecraft’s style is the role of the protagonist and the reader. It’s on purpose that the reader is left in the dark. Wyatt brought up the color out of space, which is another one of my favorites. Questions like “Why is the color here, what is it, how did it get here, how is it doing this? What is happening exactly” never answered. That UNKNOWN function is the prime #1 theme across all of Lovecraft’s work. Today, movies like Hellboy kind of draw on some of the direct monsters from Lovecraft, but movies that really nail the Lovecraftian theme are movies like The Thing, Alien (the first one), Event Horizon, The Descent, The Mist, Cloverfield. Any time where the horrible thing is completely or mostly unknown even until the end. Generally speaking, these are extra-terrestrial movies, but you’ll see this theme still used with Vampires, Zombies, Ghosts, and things like that. Any time when you’re left with more questions than answers. That’s what Lovecraft brought to the table.

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