The Mysterious World

My dearest Weirdlings,

The world feels especially chaotic and strange this week. The edges of it sharp against my skin, making me feel raw.

I just take a breath, then another — and then I keep going.  

Are you doing well? I hope you are. I hope you're surviving, if not thriving. And I send my blessings to you.

For this week in the weird, we have uncanny knights, killer inanimate objects, stray cats, invasive species, and city witches.


Movies

The Beautiful, Earthy, and Uncanny in The Green Knight (Once Weird)

Arthurian myths explore morality through the auspices of chivalry, grand adventures, and courtly love. By weaving ambiguity into the original Arthurian tale, The Green Knight provides the viewers space to explore the complexities of the morality.

Schlock and Awe: Killer Objects Reflect More Than The Absurd (Shudder)

Heather Wixson explores the history and appeal of movies in which inanimate objects are the killers. She notes,

"In many cases, these films are often reflective of our own innate desires for a taste of the better life, whether it’s purchasing a fancy dress as a means of recapturing your sense of femininity, wearing expensive – but haunted – jeans that promise you an ideal figure, a classic car that helps you find the confidence you otherwise lack, or even hair extensions that have been created as a means to adhere to society’s oppressive beauty standards."

Games

10 Video Games to Baby Step Your Way into Horror (Keeping It Spooky)

Horror video games provide another level of immersion, making the scares more visceral as the player is forced to make the decisions that lead them into or out of danger. If you're new to the genre, you might be worried that the experience will be too intense.This list of ten games — ranging from interactive tales to puzzle platformers to survival horror — is aimed at helping newbie players level up their courage.

An in-Depth Look Into the Mysterious, Futuristic World of Stray (Playstation Blog)

In this new adventure game from BlueTwelve Studio, the player takes on the form of a cat lost in "a weird, mysterious city" and trying to find the way home to his family.


Literature

The Wild, The Weird, and the Speculative (Interstellar Flight)

In this interview, Amelia Gorman discusses her forthcoming book, Field Guide to Invasive Species of Minnesota, of which she notes:

"When I read poetry that imitates the form of codices or dictionaries or written from the POV of a well-developed heteronym or a series of letters, I almost feel like I’m role-playing. Not just because it’s so vivid it feels real, but there’s also a particularly me-shaped place carved out in it. I like that experience of me-the-reader being necessary to complete the conceit, close the circuit. I wanted to create that experience and invite people to be in this near-future-climate-disaster-fantasy-world I imagined. And of course, part of that is imagining folk tales, superstitions, family dinners, and memories in that world."

Unhappily Ever After: 6 Terrifying Reimagined Fairy Tales (Tor Nightfire)

As Gwendolyn Kiste explains, "In many ways, these tales serve as the blueprint for what we’ve come to expect in the horror genre: a determined heroine, a foreboding setting, and plenty of terror lurking around every corner."


Short of the Week

Written and directed by Harry Baker, "Gutterwitch" is the story of a woman who "makes her living selling spells, fortunes, and hexes to small-time criminals and drug runners." This is a fantastic character study, one that I'd love to see turned into a feature film. (Found via ALTER.)

Andrea Blythe
Andrea Blythe writes speculative poetry and fiction. She is the author of three poetry chapbooks, including Twelve: Poems Inspired by the Brothers Grimm Fairy Tale (Interstellar Flight Press, 2020).