Thursday, December 30, 2010

Step Away From The Candlestick, Lady

As is the way of Christmas holidays, aside from the obligatory overeating and trying to remember former schoolmates' names when you bump into them in the pub, I've been racking up movie viewings like no man's business. One of which was Clue from 1985. I've wanted to see it for a while now, as I just love the idea of a film based on Cluedo. Then again, I think I love the idea of Cluedo and the characters within it, more than actually playing the game itself. My favourite character was always the mysterious hottie Miss Scarlet. In the game she always rolls first. In the film, she's a delightfully snarky brothel madam in a disappointingly green dress, as I would have imagined it was the perfect opportunity to rock up to the mansion decked out like a murder mystery Jessica Rabbit. Nevertheless, the movie is actually great fun.

Leslie Ann Warren with the revolver in the hall. Eh? See what I did there?

The original Miss Scarlet suspect card is the one I automatically associate with her, as it was the one from my cousin's Cluedo game when we were kids, and I assume it's the one everybody knows best. I am of course referring to the pretty blonde disembodied head perched on the corresponding playing piece version.

After a bit of digging around on the Interwebs, it transpired that Miss Scarlet has had quite a few makeovers in her time. In 1972 her card featured a photo of an Asian lady in a black silk dress with a cigarette holder (who happens to be the wife of beardy interviewer James Lipton of Inside The Actor's Studio fame) which seems to have led to several Asian incarnations of the character, with her appearance varying from sexy ninja girl to what looks like a middle aged restaurant owner, and even a change of name thrown into the mix, as she was rechristened Fraulein Ming in the German edition of the game.

The Asian Miss Scarlet era seemed to last through the seventies and eighties, with a sudden reversal back to Caucasian femme fatale in the nineties.

In 2008, an updated version of Cluedo was released, where the previously enigmatic Miss Scarlet was watered down to a tabloid tart actress called Kasandra Scarlet. Eugh. That's her card in the above picture on the bottom right. (The incredibly boring one.) The unimaginative re-release of the game no longer featured the study, library, ballroom or conservatory, having been supplanted by a tacky patio, guest house and spa. Colonel Mustard became Jack Mustard, a former football player and Reverend Green was turned into some Godawful PR mogul, turning the game into a horrendous, shiny, Heat magazine version of itself. Needless to say, I'm not a fan of this development.

ANYWAY. There were a few cartoon editions of the game too, which are fine by me (compared to the aforementioned footballers-and-Wags tackfest) where Minnie Mouse, Lisa Simpson, Daisy Duck and foxy Daphne from Scooby Doo all took up the mantle of Miss Scarlet in one way or another.

However, I had to save my favourite Miss Scarlets till last. The lady that rolls first has had quite the range of looks over the years and I just love the following ones, each for very different reasons.

There's Dynasty Miss Scarlet, top left, with her auburn bouffant of curls and earrings that Sue Ellen Ewing would be proud of from a 50th Anniversary edition in 1995. Beside her, there's a 1996 collector's edition where the suspect cards featured specially commissioned Victorian style illustrations. Evelyne Rose was the Swiss Miss Scarlet in the seventies, looking every inch the Alpine porn star, and last but not least, Fraulein Gloria. The 1993 German jailbait Miss Scarlet. Statutory.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

And You Will Know Her By The Trail Of Cotton Wool

In honour of Miss Dizzle's birthday, last Saturday night was spent happily imbibing €5 mojitos, with each of us in Father Ted themed fancy dress. The birthday girl herself came as the most magnificent Spiderbaby you ever did see, and special mention must go to the "HOLIDAYS!" version of Father Jack (old fashioned black and white swimsuit and knotted handkerchief on her, yes in this case, her head) a runner up in the Lovely Girls competition, a Sister Assumpta with chocolate all over her face and a dashing Pat Mustard, to name but a few.

I decided to go as that most noble character, favourite of Fargo Boyle and multiple winner of the King of the Sheep competition, Chris.

As in the costume was cheap, not me. Actually that's a lie, I'm pretty much anybody's for a bottle of Tanora and some bacon fries.

It's official, four hundred cotton wool balls, a white dress from one of those shops called Crisis or Fab or something, a bottle of fabric glue and nothing better to do on a Saturday afternoon will get you a DIY sheep costume. The cover of last week's Sunday Times magazine was duly chopped up, folded appropriately and reborn as a rosette, just so nobody would be in any doubt as to Chris's importance.

I'm still finding bits of cotton wool all over the house.

Sunday, December 19, 2010

That's Why The Lady Is A Vamp

One of my favourite people in a long, varied and often changing list is Mark Gatiss. At this stage it's a certainty that I'll love anything he's written or been any way involved in. The League of Gentlemen, his Doctor Who episodes, the deliciously decadent fluff that is the Lucifer Box series, his shiny, sexy rebooted version of Sherlock Holmes, the fantastic steampunk adaptation of HG Wells's First Men In The Moon, his catalogue of work just reads like an inventory of my favorite things, really. So it was no surprise that I happily ate up his recent three part BBC4 documentary A History of Horror. The second episode was particularly fun because it focused on the Hammer films of the 50s and 60s, with gorgeously lurid clips from their best and worst movies. But in particular, it introduced me to the absolutely arresting face of Barbara Steele.

All huge beguiling eyes and cheekbones, she made a name for herself starring in 1960s Italian gothic horror films, her breakthrough role being that of a vampire witch in Black Sunday. She said herself she was "always a predatory bitch goddess in all of these movies", which was surely down to her vampy gorgeousness and flair for being wicked. But by Christ she was good at it.

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Diary Of A Secretary: This Time She's A Bit Mental

Week One

Here we go. Year three. I have got this secretary thing down to a goddamn tee. Especially after all those shenanigans in year one and then they didn't bother their arses giving my desk any screen time in year two, the jerks. But now look at me! A working laptop, on which I can pretend to be busy while chatting on Gmail, a stapler and my very own pink highlighter. That's right. Everything's coming up Jane.

Week Two

Right. So some joker thought it might be funny to move all my stuff to the other side of my deadly laptop that actually works. Well I'm The Secretary, bitches. Capitals and everything. It's going to take more than a lame trick like this to rattle me. At least nothing's gone missing.

Week Three

Alright Jane, be cool. It's just a highlighter. Just a pink highlighter. Just my fucking pink fucking highlighter that SOMEBODY STOLE. And my stapler.

Week Four

Oh I see you Ciara. Don't think I don't because I most certainly do. And I see what you're doing. Oh sure, yeah, my highlighter is back. AND YOU'RE JUST ACTING LIKE YOU DON'T KNOW ANYTHING ABOUT IT? Well that shit is not gonna fly, lady. I will end you.

Week Five

Fine Ciara, take it, you're playing the long game here I see. Well two can play that particular game and I think you'll find that I'm not going anywhere. Unlike YOU. I know who can help me here. I know just the person in fact...Hello? I need to get a number for Frances in Alan Sugar's office. What? Who the hell is Samantha Moon?

Week Six

My highlighter is back and I'm totally winning this staring competition with Nagaite. A good day indeed.

Week Seven

See Ciara? I don't care that you've taken it again. Look, look at me not caring, I've even gone and let my lovely hair down and gotten myself a notepad for reasons I can't quite remember seeing as all I do is chat on Gmail and read blogs. Anyway. I'm bringing the sexy to this office, can't be having that Michelle being the ridey one around here. Check it.

Week Eight

Bringing the sexy may not have been the best course of action here. Barry C. Hunt is getting ideas and calling me 'babes' for some reason. I'd better tone down the hotness. Also, apparently that wasn't my notepad to take. Fine.

Week Nine

Glasses. Yes, glasses, now that should keep C. Hunt off my back. Also, FYI Ciara, I'm so bored with your game right now. Yay it's back, see if I give a fuck.

Week Ten

So fired. I did warn you. Keep walking, bitch.

Week Eleven

I may have been mistaken about Ciara. Either that or she's taken the highlighter with her. I bet her suitcase was filled with stuff from the stationery cupboard. Wagon.

Week Twelve

It's back again! Smallface Niamh. All this time it must have been Smallface Niamh. Look at her there, like butter wouldn't melt in her tiny Keyser Söze mouth. That blondie snake in the grass...oh crap, there's Gavin Duffy. Don't make eye contact, look busy, typey typey, or he'll bring up those photos I submitted for that Tan Organic audition. Scarlet, like.

Saturday, December 04, 2010

Quelque Chose #5

Joey: Are you doing what I said? Are you thinking of that reed as a woman's nipple?

Dean: I am. But, I'm a little embarrassed, she's still in school.

Joey: Maybe you should set your sights a little higher? My trumpet was always Gina Lollobrigida.

Friday, December 03, 2010

She's Gonna Shimmy Till Her Garters Break

Earlier this week I attended a screening of Burlesque in order to review it for In a nutshell it's a delightfully silly and massively camp "a star is born" story, interspersed with laughable dialogue and massive musical numbers. It's the brilliant kind of terrible and the review resides here should you wish to peruse it. The costumes however, merited a post of their very own. As it is, I have something of a weakness for corsets, bustiers and the various other fishnetty twinkly trappings of burlesque style apparel, and ridiculous and all as the film is, I certainly couldn't fault them on the outfits. Eye candy a-go-go it was.

The costume, that is.

Christina and her chorus line sparkled like sexy Christmas trees throughout, bumping and grinding their way around the stage and in one case, and pulling some truly astounding shapes on their chairs. Behold:

I could totally do that. I just don't want to.

So when Christina isn't using her acting or wandering around with her uncontrollable dancer version of Tourettes, she's hamming it up onstage in some serious style. I couldn't decide which pictures to use for this post because I think they're all fucking gorgeous so here they all are. Glittery candy floss for your eyeballs.

It's a big mad cake of deadly. In its own special way.

Wednesday, December 01, 2010

Inside the Blogger's Studio

It's been quite some time since I took part in a meme, and when Hermia tagged me in her interview post thingamajig, well, I figured it'd be just plain rude not to. So allow me to partake in a bit of fluff as it were.

And the questions!

Why did you create the blog?

Ah. Well, I actually didn't you see. My lovely friend TCup actually started it way back when, as she had been saying we should start a blog because we crack each other up. So Red Lemonade began life as a double act of sorts, with both myself and TCup talking shite. The name came from our initials, as in TK Red Lemonade.

What kind of blogs do you follow?

I actually follow a hape of blogs. (May or may not be the correct collective noun...) Well written personal blogs I suppose. The likes of The Spanish Exposition, Chancing My Arm, The Little Pinch of Salt, Radgery, Jennifer Alice In Wonderland are all entertaining reads. The Demure Lemur is also a brilliant writer but reading her blog in work at times borders on hazardous, as it can get rather sexy and as such distract you from work entirely for far more interesting thoughts. It's funny, smart and deliciously dirty. The Anti Room is a great read too. Oh and sharp, funny fashion blogs like What Will Wear Today? and The Stylebitches would be on the list too. Like I said, a hape.

Favourite make up brand?

Can't say I have one really, I wouldn't be that pushed either way once I'm not getting ripped off.

Favourite clothing brand?

Again, wouldn't have a huge preference but have found some deadly stuff in charity shops over the last while. Other than that, the usual suspects like A Wear, Topshop, Urban Outfitters (normally only when there's a sale on) and Forever 21 is a bit of alright as it happens.

Your indispensable make up product?


Favourite colour?


Your perfume?

I have a bottle of Mademoiselle by Jean Paul Gaultier which I frequently forget about entirely.

Your favourite film?

As if anyone has just ONE favourite. Amelie, Some Like It Hot, Taken (go Liam Neeson, go!), Pulp Fiction, Elf, Shaun of the Dead, THE ROOM (it so very deserves uppercase), The Rocky Horror Picture Show, Enchanted, Plan 9 From Outer Space, Anchorman, Planet Terror, Death Proof, The Hitchiker's Guide to the Galaxy and as of Monday, Machete.

What country would you like to visit and why?

Vietnam. Just so I could shout "You weren't THERE man!" at people who in fact, weren't.

Write the last question and answer it yourself: Favourite fictional character?

Jessica Beatrice Fletcher. Boom.

I hereby tag Emma of Fluff and Fripperies and The Incredible Mulq. Away with ye, ladies.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

One Track Lover

Given my previous enthusiasm about the fantastic Matt Berry on this blog, it was safe to say that I was really rather excited about seeing him live in Crawdaddy last Saturday. Or as Billy Flag put it, CrawFAAAATHERRR! Nice. The gig itself was great fun, in all its folky, funky weirdness and the man himself was sound enough to hang around afterwards to allow the audience members to swarm around him for photos, signings and what have you. The Bear bought the 7" vinyl single above, and had it signed. It now brings his record collection to a grand total of two. While our means of actually playing a vinyl record of any description remains at zero.

Naturally, the queue for a photo with Mr. Matt included The Incredible Mulq and myself, giggling nervously with no clue whatsoever as to what we were going to say when our turn came. When it did and Mulq's iPhone didn't work properly, meaning she had to explain to the girl taking the picture what to do, I was standing there thinking "BALLS! I have to say something now before this gets ridiculous and awkward" which resulted in something along the lines of:

Me: Awesome was! (How smart do I sound right now.)

Thanks, glad you enjoyed it. Did you think it was going to be a stand-up gig?

No! I have Opium and Witchazel (his albums, nothing drug-related, I assure you) at home.

(impressed): Really!

At this point our picture was taken and I figured I should quit while I was ahead before I made a complete fool of myself, so we thanked him and skittered off back to our respective boyfriends, delighted that we managed to get a decent photo. Deadly. It was up there with the time Russell Brand told me I had nice boobs.

Monday, November 22, 2010

Mad As Hell

(Network, 1975) I don't have to tell you things are bad. Everybody knows things are bad. It's a depression. Everybody's out of work or scared of losing their job, the dollar buys a nickel's worth, banks are going bust, shopkeepers keep a gun under the counter, punks are running wild in the streets, and there's nobody anywhere who seems to know what to do, and there's no end to it. We know the air's unfit to breathe and our food is unfit to eat, and we sit and watch our tee-vees while some local newscaster tells us today we had fifteen homicides and sixty-three violent crimes, as if that's the way it's supposed to be. We all know things are bad. Worse than bad. They're crazy. It's like everything's going crazy. So we don't go out any more. We sit in the house, and slowly the world we live in gets smaller, and all we ask is please, at least leave us alone in our own living rooms. Let me have my toaster and my tee-vee and my hair-dryer and my steel- belted radials, and I won't say anything, just leave us alone.

Well, I'm not going to leave you alone. I want you to get mad - I don't want you to riot. I don't want you to protest. I don't want you to write your congressmen. Because I wouldn't know what to tell you to write. I don't know what to do about the depression and the inflation and the defense budget and the Russians and crime in the street. All I know is first you got to get mad.

You've got to say: "I'm mad as hell and I'm not going to take this any more. I'm a human being, goddammit. My life has value." So I want you to get up now. I want you to get out of your chairs and go to the window. Right now. I want you to go to the window, open it, and stick your head out and yell. I want you to yell: "I'm mad as hell and I'm not going to take this any more!"

Check the register folks, the deadline to get yo' asses up on it is this Thursday 25th November.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Full Circle: Now With Photos!

The Full Circle launch on Friday night could not have gone better. A great turnout, fuelled by wine and chocolate (circular sweets, of course) and some truly great posters, as the old college gang proved that we can still pull it out of the bag, with sexy results. Fellow Full Circle-er Carolyn was on photography duty for the night, so she's to thank for these great pictures. (More here.)

What compounded the success of the night was the crazy dishevelled drunk man who barged in, fag in mouth, and started trying to pick a fight with a random exhibition-goer. We figured it had to be a good sign if someone tried to gatecrash in such a manner. That or he was so stirred by the artwork on show that it brought about a visceral reaction in him that he felt he had to express to its fullest extent. Probably not though. Either way, he was dealt with swiftly and with minimum drama by the brilliant and burly Bear who switched to bouncer-mode most deftly, escorting him back outside.

This is a detail from my poster, in case you were interested. I drew robots.

A good time was had by all and many thanks to those who attended!