Unca Harlan's Art Deco Dining Pavilion

Discussion of the man and his work.

Welcome to the Art Deco Dining Pavilion! Here's the deal. This is Harlan's little breakfast nook at Webderland. When he's not here, we chat about him and his work. When he is, we act like we're guests in his home. That's about all there is to it. (link to More specific rules) Oh, and since the nook doesn't exactly hold a crowd (and to prevent the less frequent voices from being drowned out), please limit yourself to one post a day unless Harlan asks you a direct question. The Pavilion Annex is available if you're the logorrheic type. Also, we have archives of old posts. RSS Feed

You there! Go and buy some comics from Harlan Ellison's Comic Collection right now!

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GET SOME UNCA HARLAN CDs! ** VOLUME 6 IS NOW OUT! ** On The Road With Ellison Volumes 1-6 available now from Deep Shag Records

NOW AVAILABLE: The Glass Teat and The Other Glass Teat Omnibus from Charnel House.

Displaying board posts 26 through 50 - showing messages at a time.

One Who Lurks
Lurkerville, - Tuesday, March 5 2019 9:28:40

Jeff R.: You have a point -- he also said he was a "professional liar". But occasionally he lamented the loss of witnessses to various misadventures. OOTOH, he told Tom Snyder that as a film reviewer he "had to" (keep up with? check out?) *see* porn. Did any of those reviews turn up somewhere? I would guess Tim Richmond would be the one to ask about that. And Nat Segaloff might know about the other bit.

Robert Nason: Sometimes that option would be nice to have here -- but I suppose we'd have log in somehow for it to work. "Never mind!"

- Monday, March 4 2019 16:57:54

That seems unlikely. Judging by his IMDB page, time is the one thing Josh Olson seems to have plenty of these days.

- Sunday, March 3 2019 14:13:34

It may be because we are out of time.

Robert Nason <nightwriterblue82@gmail.com>
Whitestone, NY - Saturday, March 2 2019 21:26:9

Yet another dismaying sign of the times.

Oh, boy. Josh Olson blocked me tonight after I questioned aspects of the "Green Deal" on Steve Barber's Facebook page. It seems to be impossible to have a spirited discussion about public policy these days without someone calling you a name and demonizing you as irrational, ignorant, and an enemy. Very disheartening. I've never blocked anyone I disagreed with or left a conversation because I didn't agree with someone's point of view. But that seems to be de rigeur now. I expected more from a person like Josh Olson. As someone wiser than me recently said, liberalism has been vanquished by leftism.

- Saturday, March 2 2019 20:26:8

But was the death rate in The Conqueror really the important factor? The issue was the film being made downwind from a Nevada atomic testing site. What got everyone's attention was the number of the cast and crew who developed cancer in subsequent years. Not everyone died of cancer but I think almost half the cast and crew were eventually confronted with some cancer related diagnosis. But of course correlation is not causation and when you examine the details it isn't nearly so neat. Yes, the great character actor John Hoyt died of cancer - 40 years later! And Wayne was a life long six pack a day man.

Supposedly when Howard Hughes was completely cracking up The Conqueror was one of the movies he would screen over and over for himself. The other one I remember on his list was Ice Station Zebra. It makes me queasy imagining what district of Hell you would have to be trapped in to enjoy cuing those two up more than once.


Owen, Red River (1948)

- Saturday, March 2 2019 10:16:53


Would it have been more fitting if he had posted "Pennies, Off A Dead Man's Eyes"? (IS there an audio version of that?)

- Friday, March 1 2019 14:57:15

The Conquerors ..
Actually, someone did a statistical analysis on the death rate for The Conquerors. It's no different (statistically) from the general population. What makes the death rate for The Conquerors seem so high is that several notable people died. People magazine, that paragon of skepticism, didn't use the best math.

William Francis <wcf42@mac.com>
Canton , Ga - Wednesday, February 27 2019 15:25:28

Dildonius doubles down
I am more tired than angry, but this jerk has just reprised all the same pathetic arguments to justify stealing creative work. I wish I could channel Unca Harlan's skill at invective to slice his soul, but even the sharpest cut to the bone would not make him realize he is bleeding.
Although I did sign off with "Your name choice is an insult to real dildos."

Jeff R.
Philly, - Wednesday, February 27 2019 14:30:29

Dear One Who Lurks:
Well, he SAID he was once a bricklayer. Has anyone ever attempted to verify his stories, especially the inherently extremely hard to believe ones? I can't help but wonder, sometimes.

Jason Davis <ellison.editor@gmail.com>
Burbank, California - Wednesday, February 27 2019 13:42:42

Thanks for noting the copyright infringement, William. Dildonius has been mentioned to the appropriate party.

William C. Francis <wcf42@mac.com>
Canton , Georgia - Tuesday, February 26 2019 19:14:22

More theft and more nonsense from a thief
A recording of "A Boy and His Dog" at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WYIgDzWL2gc&lc=z22mehtjira2xnvn1acdp434m2i030o1riynk3sqwctw03c010c.1551108905136878
posted by Dildonius. I kid you not about his chosen handle.
I called him on stealing from the dead. His reply:
"I didnt 'steal' shit. I'm providing the public with an audiobook of one of his short stories in order to bring awareness to his work, and the two videos I've uploaded have already proven to have created new fans of Ellison. "
Out darling youtube, of course, will not let just anyone report copyright infringement.

W. Owen Powell
Bloomington, IN - Tuesday, February 26 2019 15:56:19

The Conqueror
For a while it was the sole Wayne film I had in my collection, but I've since acquired copies of The Searchers and True Grit ('69 version), possibly one or two more in there with the westerns but I think it's just those.

On a filmmaking level The Conqueror really isn't all *that bad, nicely shot at least and it makes okay use of its supporting cast. The reason why it became such a horrific laughingstock right from the get-go, of course, is that every time the Great Khan opens up his yap and talks it's Duke f-ing Wayne, compounded down the road with the tragedy of why nearly everyone involved with it died an early death.

Steve Evil <evening_tsar@hotmail.com>
Hammertown, Soviet Canuckistan - Monday, February 25 2019 12:0:29

Watch Later List. . .
I really want to see "The Conqueror" one of these days: I'm dying to see if Wayne gives Khan the "Duke" treatment (bound to be disappointing).

I have not seen any of this year's Oscar picks either - I'm much more intrigued by Ezra's recommendations. . .

Two more for the ever growing, never shrinking pile.

-Steve E.

- Saturday, February 23 2019 23:18:31

This is the first year I can remember having not seen ANY of the best picture OSCAR nominees. I'm not sure I can draw any conclusions from that. It was not a conscious decision.

The best movies I saw in 2018 were THE ENDLESS, a quirky low budget SF/Horror flick about a couple of brothers who were raised as kids in a UFO cult and escaped. The younger brother decides he wants to go back and his older brother accompanies him although he is much less enthusiastic. This movie is proof that imagination makes a big budget unnecessary. A killer electronica soundtrack. (inevitably it's being compared to Lovecraft but I thought it was more Algernon Blackwood.)


and, FIRST REFORMED, which features a moving performance from Ethan Hawke as a minister undergoing a "crisis of faith". The movie is flawed and I thought the choice to go over the top at the end was not entirely successful but how many movies even begin to ask these questions?


and, NICO 1988, a biopic of the last tour of the German singer, ex-model. A middle aged rocker coming to terms with her past. A brilliant performance by Danish actress Trine Dyrholm.


I can't believe any of the best actor nominees can have given better performances than Hawke or Dyrholm. Oh well. These are the films that will be remembered when the big box office epics are long forgotten.

One Who Lurks
Lurkerville, - Thursday, February 21 2019 10:34:52


Yes, HE did *mention* plumbing now and then, but he *was* a bricklayer at some point, and maintained his license for that.

Kenneth Stevens <stevens.kenneth@gmail.com>
Knoxville, Tennessee - Wednesday, February 20 2019 17:36:48

Martin Evans
I don't know whether the Duke's acting was bad at Reagan's second innaugural, but without question he was terrible in THE CONQUEROR. Then again, considering his excellent performances in movies such as THE SEARCHERS and IN HARM'S WAY, maybe he was simply miscast.

Martin Evans <Coelacanth1938@yahoo.com >
Las Vegas , Nevada - Wednesday, February 20 2019 15:52:1

Hey everybody,
Does anybody know where I can find Harlan's account of John Wayne acting badly during a demonstration outside of Ronald Reagan's re-inauguration as governor of California, please?

Bok Choy
- Tuesday, February 19 2019 22:43:24

Quality craftsmanship

Jeff R.:

It occurs to me that Harlan Ellison considered himself to be a craftsman, a journeyman of word and storytelling craft -- such as a quality plumber, an experienced one, unable to descend to a "hack-it-out" level.

I feel this connects to the essay "Why Everything is Fucked Up, Since You Asked." in AN EDGE IN MY VOICE, (installment 16) wherein Harlan relates the story of his Blaupunkt radio that had been transplanted from the Austin Healy into his '67 Camaro becoming troublesome, yet through persistence was eventually repaired. Leon Opseth's finely honed talents are mentioned in the essay regarding the construction of the Art Deco Dining Pavilion as well.

Also connected to this is installment 43 in AN EDGE IN MY VOICE, wherein HE lists the highest quality providers he calls upon for specialized services and foodstuffs. Attention to detail and quality are at hand. These themes -- these recognitions -- have given me some solace in the current fly-by-the-seat-of-your-pants age.

Jeff R.
Philadelphia, - Tuesday, February 19 2019 13:52:52

Dear Bok Choy:
Yes...? And...? So...?

Bok Choy
- Friday, February 15 2019 22:5:2

post it reflection #1
HE, on occasion, would refer to the occupation, the practice of plumbing.

Robert Nason <nightwriterblue82@gmail.com>
Whitestone, NY - Friday, February 15 2019 13:56:36

I'm delighted TO hear. How do these typos always managed to slip through?

Robert Nason <nightwriterblue82@gmail.com>
Whitestone, NY - Friday, February 15 2019 13:54:50

Jason Davis

I'm delighted same hear that Harlan instructed the new Blood's a Rover book to be dedicated to George Carlin. I've been watching some of Carlin routines on YouTube lately, and I've sensed a real Ellison vibe in Carlin's work, particularly in his later HBO specials. Carlin and Harlan (hey, they could have been a comedy team) each shared an obsessive concern for language, the immense stupidity of most people, an annoyance with Americas worship of children, and a despair at the state of the world that makes them virtually soulmates. I would love to see a video clip of the two of them riffing with one another. It's interesting that Carlin began as a performer who gradually realized he was a writer and eventually wrote a number of books, while Harlan started as a writer and late became highly effective as a performer. (Though I imagine he knew he had that gift from beginning.) They moved in opposite directions and met in the middle.

Jason Davis <the.jason.davis@gmail.com>
Burbank, CA - Thursday, February 14 2019 12:2:51

Replies to Andrew J. Wilson, Robert Nason, Steve Evil
ANDREW: To clarify, my comments about the term "pre-order" were in no way directed at you or the publisher of the volume you mentioned, but rather a response to Ezra's comment on the oddness of the term. I always strive to make my use of language clearer and more precise, and "pre-order" annoys me, despite being a commonly used and accepted term.

ROBERT: BRAIN MOVIES PRESENTS BLOOD'S A ROVER is dedicated to George Carlin on Harlan's orders.

STEVE: I adore LOVE AIN'T NOTHING in all its various configurations (and there have been at least three disparate tables of contents between the Trident, Pyramid/Ace, and White Wolf editions).

Steve Evil <evening_tsar@hotmail.com>
Hammertown, Soviet Canuckistan - Wednesday, February 13 2019 19:27:41

Cheers Andrew! I can't wait to get my mine. Browsing through the back-catalogue, I almost wept: I used to have a great many of those volumes, only to have lost them all in a flood. I even owned an autographed Essential Ellison, which is now going for $100. . .

Ah well. I got the memories.

_Steve E.

Andrew J, Wilson <ajwpublishing@gmail.com>
Edinburgh, Scotland - Wednesday, February 13 2019 17:57:47

Replies to Jason Davis and Ezra, and other stray thoughts
Thanks for pre-ordering the anthology, Ezra. I hope you enjoy it.

Jason, your point is well made, but in this case, not accurate -- Shoreline of Infinity has delivered consistently for a number of years (much like yourself). The book is being launched at an event here in Edinburgh today, and I'll be there.

And while I remember, editor-in-chief Noel Chidwick will be sending a copy of the book to the HERC address post-haste.

Welcome back, Steve Evil! My treasured copy of "Love Ain't Nothing But Sex Misspelled" is the 1976 Pyramid edition -- "_First time in paperback!_" However, I have no recollection of how or when I first acquired it...

Keeney, if memory serves -- which isn't always the case, as the above makes clear -- it's not "Sandra O'dell", but Sandra Odell, and Google offers up the following:



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