December 1st, 2008
Immense Carnivorous Subaqueous
Monstrosity Devours Helpless Men
–Just in time for the Holiday S eason!
Last week KrOB took us down to the Moon’s surface– and beneath it–
to reveal a bizarre biota of Moon Creatures, from hundred-foot-long
mandible-snapping caterpillaroids to intellectual insectoids. Who
knew, eh? This week we take a break from (exclusively) invertebrate
shenanigans to showcase exotic species once found on a certain
lost prehistoric island. First, swimming scorpiopedes, strange and
venomous aquatic centipede descendants, put in an appearance. But
this is only the “appetizer” to krafty KrOB’s “main course–” the horrible
ambush predator Piranhadon titanus, a freshwater fish as large as
some whales. You’ll watch in terrified fascination as its gigantic jaws
drag luckless sailors down to a watery doom. Those who may be overly
sensitive to such material are advised to turn away or shade their eyes.
It’s “showbiz” –pure entertainment — and it’s all happening right
here– at the famed
Chez Poulet Gallery-Cabaret
     =9:00 PM=
Admission to the Ask Dr. Hal! show in its newest form? That’s
                          $10 -ISH
                                               C  H  E  A  P  !
A donation to support the arts and our on-going
exposition, now in its 12th year of esoteric, recondite
entertainment. A regrettably unavoidable necessity in
turbulent times of economic convulsions and a harsh,
unforgiving fiscal climate. A vote of confidence, if you
will. Keep Chicken afloat. Support the Performing Arts
Community. Give what you can. And may the spirit of
charity dwell eternally in your heart. Now fork over,
Just before each performance begins, we screen a great animated
cartoon– each one seven minutes of the best theatrical shorts ever
committed to film. Last week we showed the Bob Clampett 1944
WWII masterpiece, Russian Rhapsody, the only cartoon we know of
to star German dictator Adolf Hitler. Hit-larious! But now we’re going to
change our pace a bit for a pastoral interlude from the Walt Disney
studios back in 1937. On deck is one of the most intricate and beautiful
cartoons ever lensed, a film which itself represented tremendous forward
progress in the evolution of the animation medium– The Old Mill,
directed by Wilfred Jackson and released by RKO Radio Pictures (at
the time it was made Disney did not yet have his own distribution
company). It depicts a natural community of small animals near, and
populating an old, abandoned windmill, and what happens when a violent
thunderstorm strikes, almost destroying their habitat. Oh, if there were only
enough room in this space to write about these cartoons here as they
deserve! How we could go on about Disney’s invention, the marvelous
Multiplane Camera, first showed off to best advantage in this very film.
Multiplane shots allow the camera to track into the film frame
dimensionally, a neat trick when you’re actually photographing flat
drawings. And, this still-amazing film also incorporates realistic depictions
of animal behavior, complex lighting and color effects, representations
of rain, wind, lightning, ripples, splashes and reflections, not to mention
3-D rotation of detailed objects and the use of timing to produce specific
dramatic and emotional effects. Remember, this is an entirely hand-made
work of art, drawn by skilled animators a frame at a time and then
laboriously hand-colored over hundreds of hours by the women in the Ink
& Paint Department at the studio. As the seven and a half minutes of animation
rush by on the screen, the titanic effort it took to produce it is completely
concealed. Most remarkably of all, these were the same people who, a mere
9 years earlier had been drawing the herky-jerky Steamboat Willie (1928)
in which a sadistic Mickey Mouse twists the tails of various pigs, a cat and a
goat, and the neck of a luckless duck, to make music from their various
shrieks. Learning as they went along, these people invented animation.
They were the studio to beat in their day. Even Steamboat is a superior work
to what was being produced at the time by others. But The Old Mill is still a
masterpiece by any standards. In fact, it’s safe to say that it could not be
produced today, since, ironically, the skills needed to make it were lost as its
creators gradually died away. The lessons learned from making The Old Mill
would later be incorporated into Disney’s feature-length animated films,
especially 1937’s Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs. It’s all in gorgeous
three-strip Technicolor, as rich and beautiful as the day it was released.
The Old Mill won the 1937 Academy Award for Best Short Subjects:
Cartoons. And, in 1994 it was voted #14 of the 50 Greatest Cartoons of
All Time by members of the animation field. It is ranked at the
IMDb top short list as the 17th greatest short film ever, as of June 2008.
So join us this Wednesday night in time to catch up with another treasure
of your Nation’s vanished popular culture. Remember, our show will start
at the very moment the cartoon ends.
“The detail work is inspired… (m)ost unreservedly recommended.”
                                             Robert Reynolds, IMDB User Comments
Yes, Frank is back! And we’ve got him! Before every show, by special
arrangement, the perennial protester/holy man, protest sign grasped firmly
in hand, the living institution after whose oracular rantings the late, great
12 Galaxies night club was named, will ascend the stage once again– and
deliver a rapid-fire, impassioned, incomprehensible bromide. You can take
that to the bank. Go, Frank! We’ve even got him answering questions!
ADH Science solon Pete Goldie has been providing breathless audiences
with images from NASA’s Cassini Probe, and the excitement was palpable
at last week’s show. Pete will be on hand this week too, to present more of
the newest discoveries made in the Saturnian vicinity. It’s an exciting time.
Now astronomers looking at the spectacular supersonic plumes of gas and
dust shooting from Saturn’s shepherd moon Enceladus say there are strong
hints of liquid water, a key building block of life. These plumes, which
travel at an estimated speed of more than 1,360 mph, just might be ice
particles, not liquid. But such velocities strongly indicate the presence of
liquid in the eruption of the mysterious moon, one of 60 circling the giant gas
planet. In all likelihood, both ice particles and water vapor shoot from the
South Pole of Enceladus. Of course, Europa, a moon of Jupiter, may have a
liquid ocean beneath its frozen surface. But Enceladus is considered more
accessible. And Pete’s eager to tell you al-l-l-l about it. So travel with Pete,
our own Boffo Boffin, through the endless reaches of the universe in his
continuing segment, “Waste of Space.”
David “Yo-Yo Pro” Capurro provides a running visual commentary as the
show progresses. He finds pictures on the Internet which resonate with…
whatever’s being discussed. This Wednesday, David again will be on hand,
serving up accompanying images (usually) scraped up from the benthic
bottom of the Internet. You might not think so, but the guy actually
practices some restraint on behalf of our show– as bad as what he usually
puts up on our screen is, he’s pullin’ his punches, folks– let’s just say, if he
wanted to, it could be worse– a lot worse. And tonight might be the night
he gives in to temptation. But see for yourself. As “Cappy’s” fingers fly over
the keyboard you will be unable to avoid the horrendous, stomach-churning,
hyper-pornographic results, on our
It’s a by-Our-Lady Multi-Media Experience, is what it is.
“Hey, everybody– come see the Ask Dr. Hal! show in a brand new
location: my living room. It’s 4 guys doing improv on 4 different
levels. It can be amazing.”
So there won’t be any booze for sale this time, OK? BRING YOUR OWN.
We encourage you to. Of course, good questions will still be rewarded in
the traditional manner– with Fernet Branca, –the “Miracle Liquor.”


Sailors crossing a prehistoric swamp on improvised rafts are horrified when
out of the water suddenly come yard-long aquatic insects, Scorpiopedes
of the new family the Skull Island neopedes and the species Nepapede
harpagabdominus. These horrors climb right up on the rafts, brandishing
their shears-like mouth-parts and curling their venomous distal abdominal
segments. Intensely territorial, these unique arthropods actually only ate
algae but moved decisively against any intrusion into their watery world.
But… suddenly, they all jump off and swim away. Why? They know what’s
coming– something many times worse. A monster fish, the implacable
Piranhadon titanus, is hungrily heading for the intrepid band of explorers.
Objective: dinner. Again, lack of space forbids a thorough discourse on this
horrific carnivore, its unusual double-hinged jaws, its sexual dimorphism,
its huge, gaping head on its elongated, flexible neck, its weak (but
effective) vision, its two enlarged, vibration-sensitive barbels, even its
habit of beaching itself to allow various small birds and lizards to remove
its parasites in perfect safety. We can only say you wouldn’t want to be
in the water with one of these babies, no Sir or Madam. Man is the
prey. A KrOB edit on our giant screen. SEE Thompson machine guns fail
to stop the rampage of the living swamp demon. SEE it all in widescreen
color and stereophonic sound– HEAR the crunch of giant jaws and the
piercing screams of the doomed. Narrated by Dr. Hal. Scientific,
educational. You know the drill. Get set for the thrill…
Once again, we decided to hold the curtain just a little for stragglers.
But even so, many came in too late to catch the cartoon. We know
what’s going on– some of you are trying to train us to start later.
Well, the only reason we allowed it this time was that it wasn’t a
school night– ’twas the Day Before Thanksgiving. We’ve got a lotta
show to do these daze & we’re starting earlier– ’round 9:00 PM or so.
So, don’t be too late, gate. Natch, not everyone was behind the curve–
fairly early came in Duncan D’nuts squiring inspiring dearie Alex
O’Leary. Ready Rick wuz on hand– OK, he lives there. But puissant
Puzzling Evidence, who came all the way over from Oaktown, sure
beat the crowd… Mr. & Mrs. Jim Khennedy paid us a visit, as did
ever-ready Ronn Rosen, who brought us a box o’ chocolates– actually
choklit-covered cherries (’twas Dr. Hal’s birthday, or actually 2 daze
before same)… No show could be complete without Gentleman Farmer
Paul Pot, whose generous donatives of Agricultural Samples always
give our post-show proceedings some moxie… Mr. Tom, Mike, David
Fine & matchless Madeline Boyne know what the show’s alla bout…
Ravishing Rusty Blazenhoff brought her Mom, & she brought delish-us
homemade cookies. Chocolates, cookies…! Y’know, sometimes this
Type II Diabetes thing is a real drag… Delectable Dawn Stott sent up
a musical birthday card, much appreciated even though cruel Chicken
ripped it up, trying to extract the singing chip… And the parade of
beauties wuz just getting started. There was no mistaking Loop!
Station’s resplendent Robin Coomer (a.k.a. Patsy McDonald) or
gorgeous Ena Dallas of the Xtra Action Marching Band Flag Team,
on the arm of “Romeo” Roky Roulette… Appealing Architecture student
seduisante Solar, a.k.a. Solar lab, graced us 4 a coupla minuteskis, but
then had to leave, 4 which we grieve… As for us, we plan to be there
for awhile. That’s right! Now that we’re booking the show ourselves, in its
own performance space, no harried rock club owner can “suddenly” recall
that one of our show dates is preempted by a thoughtlessly booked
Poofy Whiner Junkies concert, benefit for a Sexual Predator’s Bicycle
Mishap or other seemingly more profitable enterprise… It goes on the
boards every gol-durn Wednesday at 9:00 PM, and that’s all she wrote.
Here at Chicken John Productions we’re keeping in mind that some of you
have a need… to catch the la-a-a-st B.A.R.T. train at 12:17 AM from the 24th
St. Mission Station back to the wilds of the East Bay. Translation: these
days we start earlier. We really do. Ask anyone… And try to get there before
9:00 PM, wontcha, or you might miss the cartoon, invalidating all our work…
If you see PCR’s own Dr. Monkey lurking around with a computer, a
microphone, and 50 yards of cable, he must be finally getting around to
capturing the show for broadcast on his station, Pirate Cat. But don’t hold
your breath. We guess it’ll happen some time. The plan is that these shows
will then be available to invalids and shut-ins. Thoughtful, eh? Meanwhile, the
PCR schedule on line is, to be blunt, not truthful about continuing to offer
the radio version of Ask Dr. Hal! For more than a month the station’s been
disappointing listeners– do we ever get the emails –by claiming we’re still on
at 10 PM Wednesday nights. We’ve made every effort to get them to stop
this, but they’re apparently just blowing us off. As a result, Chicken’s a hair’s
breadth away from permanently denying them the franchise. But, who knows?
Maybe they’ll make this unnecessary. If so, and we do let them broadcast
ADH, we’ll then provide advice, right here in this space, on what time to tune
your radio dial to 87.9 FM. We’re as anxious as you are to receive this
information. And, when we get it, we’ll pass it right along to you. Nuff said.
View some of the hi-lites from last week’s show on You Tube,
courtesy of Puzzling Evidence. SEE Chicken unfairly berate
KrOB. HEAR Dr. Hal as he wanders farther afield even than
usual in his meandering “answers” to several questions.
Just go to:
See clips from November 19th’s show. Warning to Parents:
Chicken really ladles out those cuss-words. Go to:
The endless-seeming Election Period is now, at last, behind us. For
those who would like to indulge themselves in one final wallow, check
out this ultra-entertaining (Adult-themed) Puzzling Evidence video
clip from the ADH Pirate Cat radio show featuring Dr. Hal, KrOB, Pete
“Savant” Goldie and the additional appearance of special guests
Presidential Candidate John McTaint and vivacious wife Sindi
McTaint. Go to:
See you Wednesday night!