Monday, June 30, 2014

The Free Bin: Pre-Code Superheroines, Deadly Fashion, and Homicide Hunter

I’ve had a wildly exciting week (which you’ll learn more about if you read the whole post), but I still found a little time to read, relax, and scour the net for fascinating stuff.

  • Tumblr blogger Saladin Ahmed has a cool piece on pre-code comic book heroines, rounding up forgotten female characters like Lady Satan, The Veiled Avenger, and a bleach-blonde jungle spirit who might well be the first woman with superpowers to appear in comic form.

  • The Guardian is calling it “the kinkiest secret in the Soviet Union”: a collection of erotic and pornographic works confiscated from aristocrats after the revolution. Deemed “ideologically harmful,” the vast collection of literature, artwork, photos, and film was off-limits to the public, but supposedly enjoyed by high-ranking officials. Because it was kept secret, most of it is remarkable well-preserved.

  • Victorian fashions could be as deadly as they were beautiful. From poisonous arsenic dyes to madness-inducing mercury-laced top hats, just getting dressed could turn a person into lunatic or a corpse. A new exhibit in Toronto is exploring the allure of deadly fashion and the desire for beauty at all costs.

  • The Pablo Neruda Foundation has reported the find of twenty previously-unknown poems by the Nobel Prize-winning writer, calling it “the biggest find in Spanish literature in recent years.” The poems are said to be of high quality, matching that of some of his best works.

  • Actress Scarlett Johansson is reportedly bringing a lawsuit against an author and his publisher because the book features a character that is described as looking like the celebrity. Good luck with that.

  • In personal news, I spent most of last week filming an episode of the ID television series Homicide Hunter. I can’t reveal a lot because of spoilers, but some time around August, you can see me in a pretty plum part as a strip club owner/murder suspect. After the show airs, I’ll be sharing some of what I learned about structure from the show’s script, which dices up real-life murder stories and presents them in a way that makes the outcome a surprise.


  1. I'm not a cable TV person so I've never heard of ID until I clicked on the link to learn more about HOMICIDE HUNTER. Can the episode be viewed via the internet? I'd love to see you, but nothing will ever force me to subscribe to Cable TV ever again. I hear that cable subscription services are going the way of the 45 rpm record, since pay-per-view and streaming services are a lot more popular (and profitable) these days.

    1. I can go you one better: I don't have a TV. I stream or watch DVDs on the computer. I'm going to have to watch the episode at my local bar. I don't know if it will be internet-available, but if I find out, I'll let everyone know.

  2. Congratulations on your Homicide Hunter gig. Looking forward to the details and plan to watch (even though it's the kind of thing that gives me nightmares).

    Soviet porn, I'd love to see it, or hear what it entails. Because apparently, according to a book I read on it, porn is NOT the same all over the world - not everybody likes the silicone-breasted screamers often featured in US adult flicks.

  3. Kelly, when is the show airing I'll go over to my mom's to watch it! You can watch, sometimes, ID on this site I catch cable channels I can't get there a lot.

    I saw a show on the BBC about the Victorian days and all the dangers in the home. Appalling!

  4. Very excited about your appearance in HOMICIDE HUNTER Kelly - well done you! Look forward to updates - so, 'strip club owner', does this mean we cave to officially refer to you as 'madam' now, or is that not euphemistic enough? :)

  5. I have just installed iStripper, so I can watch the hottest virtual strippers on my desktop.