As some of you might know I used to publish a food and drink zine called The Hungover Gourmet. I say "used to" because the latest issue of the zine also happens to be the last issue of the zine.
There were many reasons for pulling the plug on the publication – time, money, turnaround, ennui – but the biggest reason was that I really didn't have the passion for plugging away at a print publication anymore. And I'd promised myself that when the passion wasn't there it was time to get out.
So, for the first time in almost 25 years I'm not publishing a zine. Oh sure, I've got three blogs and two websites, but no empty Quark layout on my computer staring back at me, no bulging folders of clips, article ideas, notes, found stuff and artwork just itching to make its way into print. And, like I said, no passion to make it happen.
Luckily, that passion is still out there for other publishers. I don't follow the zine scene as closely as I used to, back when zines like SLIMETIME, HI-TECH TERROR, VIDEOOZE, WET PAINT and GORE GAZETTE were showing up in my mailbox on a regular basis, hipping me to the most outer limits of the trash universe. These days, it seems like a lot of the genre mags are almost pro-zines, with their color covers, glossy paper and handsome layouts.
Which makes it especially nice when a good old photocopied horror film zine like RIGOR MORTIS lands in my hands. This is the second installment of the Baltimore-based zombie-centric publication and it's a nice expansion on the all-zombie-focused first issue. Yes, the 60-page digest is still heavy on living dead content (including a nice comparison of the two versions of NIGHT OF THE LIVING DEAD as well as an exploration of zombie comedies or zom-coms that sadly fails to include the great NIGHT OF THE CREEPS) but there's also a look at Carpenter's THE FOG, paranormal reality shows and more.
Even our main man Klaus Kinski gets a nice nod, with a five page article on Kinski's performance in Herzog's NOSFERATU and how it compares to other portrayals of the vampire mainstay. Unfortunately, there's no exploration of the trash-tastic NOSFERATU IN VENICE.
While my passion for producing zines may have waned, I'm happy to report that my passion for consuming them – like a zombie chomping down on some brains – is still as strong as ever. Here's hoping Dread Sockett, DeadVida and Co. keep the RIGOR MORTIS fires burning.