SIXTH SMASH WEEK!
ASK DR. HAL! Sails On–
A S. F. HOLIDAY TRADITION!
WEDNESDAY, Dec. 10th!
It’s Time to Come and Visit a Popular Favorite Again
=====SEE OUR ALL-NEW STAGE========
The Famous Chez Poulet Gallery-Cabaret
3359 Cesar Chavez St.
(Army) Street between Mission and South Van Ness.
Just on the edge of Bernal Heights. The old Odeon Neighborhood.
TWO SPECIAL EXTRA HOLIDAY SHOWS!
OUR 22nd CHRISTMAS SPECIAL!
OUR NEW YEAR’S EXTRAVAGANZA!
FOR DETAILS, SCROLL ALL THE WAY DOWN
TO THE BOTTOM— PAST THE OBITUARIES.
DOWN FROM THE SKIES– KrOB
Brings YOU the Skinny on
Ruthless Aggressors from Other Star
Systems Bomb, Strafe Planet’s Cities
–Just in time for the Holiday Season!
Last week KrOB took us to a certain lost prehistoric island, where
swimming scorpiopedes, venomous aquatic centipede descendants,
(just) manage to co-exist with a freshwater fish as large as a whale, the
ambush predator Piranhadon titanus. Pretty scary, eh? This whole bit,
about being attacked by (usually quite exotic) animals, though offered
up by us weekly in the spirit of all fun, nonetheless pushes certain hard-
wired evolutionary buttons. As rational thought on the matter should
make plain, any animals should be more afraid of humans than vice
versa, if you look at the record so far… But… what if we were the
“animals,” lower in the hierarchical tier than we usually find (or place)
ourselves? What if there were Powers surpassing ours as we dominate
the brutes on our (and their) own planet? How would it feel? Not good, is
our answer. And KrOB’s been itching to put this one up on the big screen
for quite some time. This Wednesday he gets his chance. Watch as the Aliens, the Space People, the Sky Gods or what have you, put us in the
unenviable position of those poor moose (meece?) and wolves facing a
terrifying and inexplicable doom– being blasted from above by
Sarah Palin from a helicopter. You know, this might be the scariest
KrOB “edit” yet! We advise those who may be overly sensitive to such
material 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
where SHOWTIME “ALWAYS” BEGINS AT
WE MEAN IT THESE DAYS– WE REALLY DO…
Admission to the Ask Dr. Hal! show in its newest form? That’s
A Love offering. 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. C’mon, 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, cheapskate!
WE START… WITH A CLASSIC CARTOON!
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 Old Mill, directed by
Wilfred Jackson for Walt Disney. This week it’s back to Warner Bros.
and our all-time favorite animation director Bob Clampett as we bring you
the immortal Porky Pig masterwork of Surrealism and avant-garde artistry,
Porky in Wackyland (1938). The story concerns Porky’s expedition to find
The Last of the Do-Dos in Dark/Darker/Darkest Africa. In 1994 it was voted
#8 of The 50 Greatest Cartoons of All Time by members of the animation
field, and in 2000 was deemed “culturally significant” by the United States
Library of Congress, which selected it for preservation in the National Film
Registry. What’s it like? As in all of Clampett’s cartoons, the screen overflows
with bizarre, intricate details which even after many viewings still provide
something new. Looking heavily influenced by the work of Salvador Dali, the
film’s baffling strangeness is no impediment to its irrepressible humor. There’s
a creature playing the flute by blowing its nose, a strange rabbit dangling in
mid-air from a swing that seems to be threaded through its own ears, an
angry criminal imprisoned behind a free-floating barred window that he
holds in his hands, and a cop with a wheel for legs, who rides up to assault
the prisoner. There’s also a three-headed monstrosity based on the Three
Stooges, with the three heads violently arguing in a squeaky abstract language,
which is translated by a long-nosed little creature who runs up to the foreground
of the image and bashfully offers, “He says his mother was scared by a
pawnbroker’s sign.” Get it? Sure you do. Three heads, three balls to a
pawnbroker’s sign… You know, a pawnbroker’s sign? That sign with the three
balls…? You see, they used to have those signs… aah, you’re a lousy audience.
OK, back to our cartoon crowd, seething and teeming with all those outre
characters. Explorer pertinacious Porky Pig is confronted by all of them almost
as soon as he arrives, just moments after the lunatic sunrise (the sun is lifted
above the horizon by a tower of stacked creatures) signals the start of a new
day in Wackyland. This kind of abstract nonsense drives the picture, with the
same kind of absurdist sense of humor and fluid flow between unrelated images
that propelled such Surrealist films as Un Chien Andalou.
As in the rest of this director’s uncompromising work, the cartoon contains moments that have often been censored through the years, but, needless to say, we plan to show it
complete and uncut. So join us this Wednesday night in time to catch up with
yet another treasure of your Nation’s vanished popular culture. Remember, our
show will start right up at the very moment the cartoon ends. Be on time!
“Clampett’s film is a cartoon masterpiece… jaw-droppingly inventive…”
Ed Howard, Only the Cinema
SPECIAL GUEST APPEARANCE:
MAYOR GAVIN NEWSOM!
Opening our show this week as our Very Special Guest Star will be the City’s
highest-rolling Swell, Mayor Gavin Newsom. His Honor will speak about his
move to slash the Arts Budget, and what he plans to do about the economy
when he becomes Governor of our State. This Mayor has his critics, but say
what you like about him, he’s no puppet of the Board of Supervisors.
…AND GUESS WHO? FRANK CHU!
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!
GOLDIE’S DEFIANCE– RELIANCE ON SCIENCE!
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 endless reaches of the unfathomable
void. It’s an exciting time. The news from Mars, however, seems ambiguous.
After nearly a month of daily checks to determine whether Martian NASA’s
Phoenix Mars Lander would be able to communicate again, the agency,
Pete let us know, has stopped using its Mars Orbiter to hail the Lander
and listen for its beep. At this time of the Martian year, reduced daily
sunshine has now left the solar-powered Phoenix craft without enough
energy to keep its batteries charged. (Folks, we know how it must feel.) The final communication from Phoenix (the spacecraft) was a single, feeble signal received via NASA’s Mars Odyssey Orbiter back on Nov. 2. The Phoenix Lander operated for
two overtime months, after all, achieving all its science goals and more
during its original three-month mission. It landed on the Martian Arctic
Plain on May 25th of this year while the Ask Dr. Hal! show was “dark.”
Well, now it’s the Lander that’ll be dark for a while, Pete tells us–
entombed in a block of frozen carbon dioxide– Dry Ice. Br-r-r-r-r-r!
The last attempt to listen for a signal from Phoenix was when Odyssey
passed overhead at 3:49 p.m. PST Saturday, Nov. 29th (the day following
Dr. Hal’s recent birthday), at 4:26 PM (local Martian solar time) on the 182nd
Martian Day, or Sol, since Phoenix landed. And Pete’s eager to tell you
al-l-l-l about it. So travel with Pete, our own Boffo Boffin, through the
mysterious realms of the universe in his continuing segment, “Waste of
David “Yo-Yo Pro” Capurro provides a running visual commentary as the
show progresses. He finds pictures on the Internet which’re supposed to
resonate with whatever’s being discussed. This Wednesday, David again will
be on hand at his station on our stage, 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 doing 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 finally “snaps” and gives in to temptation.
But see for yourself. As “Cappy’s” agile fingers fly over the keyboard you will
be unable to avoid the horrendous, stomach-churning, hyper-pornographic
results, on our
MULTIPLE MONITOR SCREENS
It’s a dang-blasted Multi-Media Experience, is what it is.
CHICKEN JOHN SEZ:
“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.”
NOT A BAR– BUT YOU CAN DRINK!
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 that old standby, Fernet Branca, –the
THE ASK DR. HAL! SHOW – FEATURING FRANK CHU – CHICKEN JOHN –
DR. HAL – KrOB – PETE GOLDIE – DAVID CAPURRO – WITH SPECIAL
GUEST APPEARANCE BY MAYOR GAVIN NEWSOM – SPECIAL GUESTS
ROOF-DWELLING HILLBILLIES THE “PO’BUCKERS”– DONATION TEN
DOLLARS OR SO – AS CLOSE AS YOU CAN COME – OUR DOORMAN
ROBERT LEVY WILL TAKE YOUR DOUGH AS YOU CROSS OUR
THRESHOLD. COME ALL, COME ONE, NEW SHOW, NEW RUN…
Ask Dr. Hal! seems to be happening! Each time we do our show we’ve been
getting more people. Last Wed. we found ourselves having to move in more
chairs, as there weren’t enuff 4 our kapacity krowd. Now Chicken’s getting
set to buy even more chairs. Don’t worry, folks– everyone’ll get seated… For
some new attendees, ADH can turn out to be intimidating. Just ask Mieke,
who had to turn down the honor of a KrOB Moment. I guess the honor wasn’t
quite compelling enuff. All seriousness aside, everyone, don’t feel you haveta
get up there when Chicken sounds the Clarion Call. There’ll always be
someone to take your place, if you’re a bit put off by the ruff stuff. So wuz it
last Wed.; so shall it always be… Not that we didn’t have our hands full with
the likes of Goose, Arko, fabulous Fredrika Distracto, & anxious Andrew
Stelzer– they came up with some lu-lus. Marco Casserole & dynamic Dan
Blanchard put us to the test, as did Juan Rapedo & Washington, who at
least forked over a couple of Washingtons… Then there was delectably
decorative Dawn Stott, dressed to the nines for our Social Event, tho’ we’ve
seen her elsewhere wearing less– much less… ADH also welcomed Zoli
a.k.a. Yoni Wannaleiya of the famed Wink n’ Yoni Show– ackshully more
than the Swooner Crooner everybody knows him as, the Zollster’s a
classically trained singer. We saw him bring in a plate of lit candles to help
Chicken with the ambient lighting. Too bad this spectacularly distracting moment worked against our cartoon, washing out th’ screen. And will
someone clue Chicken that the flashing, ruby-red Disco Ball is also too
much to have going when we’re showing the cartoon? Thanx a bunch… Local
Theater God Sean “Strangelove” Kelly wuz in the house– slumming? –and
Videographer to the Stars Mark “Rome Burned in a Day” Mcgothigan. But
where wuz sleepy-eyed Mark back at Burning Man this year, when we had to
do our show in Center Camp in the middle of a howling white-out inside the
tent? He’d given up & plodded back to his site— that’s right– figgering nobody
would give a p’formance– or show up 4 one– in dust-blown Hell. Wrong on
both counts, Mcgoth. Now there’s no record of that exercise in futility. Don’t
you realize The Show Must Go On? And so it must… Malapert Madeline
Boyne couldn’t be missed, nor could luscious Lynn, and you couldn’t miss
kurvaceous Kate Willett or kaptivating Kaye… Ed Holmes, a.k.a. Bishop Joey
of the First Church of the Last Laff came in to see us, fresh from his own 4-star
show “Subhuman” @ Rythmix Cultural Works… So did Puzzling Evidence
of eponymous KPFA 94.1 FM radio fame. Puz Ev, in case you haven’t noticed,
has been shooting mini-docs of our show which he then puts up on You Tube:
Click on the links below this col. We also noted harried Hagula, who musta left
off her make-up… then there wuz just-plain-Juniper-fresh Jessica Noël, new to
the show but full of questions. These she mostly asked after we were done & we
were off duty– we chatted pleasantly for some time… The roof-dwelling
Hillbillies were back, but the Child Protective Services man came once again
during showtime to take little Lucky into protective custody. If only Mom & Pop
would take that lollipop out of the kid’s hair… Paul Pot, Xpert in Space
Aviation, keeps souping up Pete Goldie’s spacecraft model of the
Cassini-Huygens Probe, attaching magnetic grapples between the Orbiter &
the Lander. Science marches on… 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 (& for the record I don’t mean our doughty
Doorman, redoubtable Robert Levy, late of our last venue, the late, great 12
Galaxies, named by fearless Frank Chu– & yes, he was there this time too)
–can “suddenly” recall that one of our show dates is preempted by a
thoughtlessly booked Rutabaga Stem Suckers concert, benefit for a Sexual
Predator’s Bicycle Crash or other seemingly more profitable enterprise… It (the
Show) goes on the boards every ding-blasted 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… 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…
WILL WE BE BROADCAST ON PIRATE CAT RADIO?
You won’t see PCR’s own Dr. Monkey lurking around with a computer, a
microphone, and 50 yards of cable when you arrive this Wednesday. But
in the fullness of time, he does intend to get around to capturing the show
for broadcast on his station, Pirate Cat. The plan is that these episodes will
be available, as audio, to invalids and shut-ins. Thoughtful, eh? But Dr. M. will
be out of town this week, hob-nobbing with his brother wizards. When he
returns, assuming a few trifling outstanding issues with the management can
be cleared up, “all systems will be go“ for “liftoff–“ and we’ll be able to let
you know at that point just when you’ll be able to start tuning in to these
broadcasts and start downloading those podcasts. You’ll know when it’ll be
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.
AMUSING PUZZLING EVIDENCE YOU TUBE CLIPS!
Did you know you can watch some of the show right this minute?
Scope out a few of the hi-lites from previous episodes of Ask Dr. Hal! It’s
the next best thing to being there in person! How? Why, just click on these
View choice fragments from our November 26th 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!
FORREST J. ACKERMAN
November 24, 1916 – December 4, 2008
The world has lost Forrest “Forry” Ackerman, mentor to
a generation’s shrine of secret knowledge. Without 4e
(as he was often known) there would be no Church of
the SubGenius, to mention just one example– and no
Ask Dr. Hal! Show. Ackerman, who originally coined
the term “sci-fi,” was influential not only in the
formation, organization, and spread of science fiction
fandom, but had also long been a key figure in the
wider cultural acceptance of science fiction as a
literary, artistic and film genre. Ackerman is also
remembered as the editor-writer of the magazine
Famous Monsters of Filmland, as well as for being an
occasional author, actor in monster movies, producer
and literary agent. His house in Hollywood, or as he
liked to put it, “Horrorwood, Karloffornia,” was for
years a sort of shrine, a Mecca to the faithful, who
from the 1950’s to the present day took the pilgrimage
to see “4SJ’s” giant library and unmatched collection of
artifacts from science fiction and horror films. This writer
made the memorable journey a few years back and was
treated graciously there. We at Ask Dr. Hal! remember “FJA” with fondness, and now offer him this gesture of
our love and respect. In Pace Requiescat!
A CHRISTMAS MESSAGE FROM CHICKEN JOHN…
Chicken John to do 22nd Stupid Christmas Show!
SAN FRANCISCO – Chicken John, noted idiot, started a tradition
back in 1986. He threw a Christmas show, on Christmas Night– for
people who didn’t have families, or had them but couldn’t be with
them for whatever reason. Call it Orphan Christmas.
The show started out as a punk rock show with music and other
stuff. In the early 90’s it became a variety show. In 1997, with partner
Hal Robins (the Ask Dr.Hal! show, SubGenius Foundation, voice of
Half-Life’s Isaac Kleiner) it became a homegrown version of a popular
Chuck Barris Game Show: Treasure Hunt. In the show Treasure Hunt,
you answer a trivia question, and if you get it right you get to select a
wrapped present. You open it, and keep whatever was in the box.
Chicken adopted this concept, but put the gifts under a “Christmas
Tree” (usually a mike stand with a branch duct taped to it). But the twist
is that Chicken gets people to bring the wrapped gifts. So, say,
someone may come with a whole pick up truckload of gifts. The pile is
often, in fact, very high.
The show starts at 10PM. The show ends when the last gift is opened
(which was after 3AM last year). It’s really a marathon of unendurable
comic improv, as Chicken and Hal drag everyone on stage to answer
Trivial Pursuit questions and fill the Chez Poulet with gift wrappings and
Holiday bullshit. Some gifts are stellar, some a joke. Some are just
confusing. Best present to date was a ticket to Burning Man. The worst–
a dirty diaper.
Others have been an entire set of encyclopedias, various items of small
furniture, comic books, fake Rolex watches, “sea monkeys,” cat food, a
diary, original artwork, a paddle-ball game, a bubble-blower, a set of
car keys, a laptop, a bag of weed, pictures of your mother naked, a
parking ticket (payable), fun-sized candy, a coupon for a hand job, a
Ritual Roasters Coffee coupon, garbage bags and a Slinky. It wouldn’t be
Christmas if someone didn’t get a Slinky, would it? So, on Christmas Night, come on down to the Chez Poulet Gallery-Cabaret.Your family is all of us
who also have no families. And if you weren’t going to get to unwrap a gift
this year– well, Chicken’s got you covered. God bless us all. Everyone. Even
“The Year Chicken John Saved Christmas,” Year 22!
(Also known as, “The Year Chicken John Ruined Christmas”)
DECEMBER 25th– Christmas Night, 10 PM. FREE!
DECEMBER 24th: The Ask Dr. Hal! Show. DECEMBER 25th: The 22nd
Annual Christmas Show. Come to both!
NEW YEAR’S EVE!
Ring in 2009 the right way– with Chicken and Hal!
DECEMBER 31st– Until after Midnight!
Watch this space for news about our New Year’s Eve Chez Poulet
Extravaganza! If you were fretting about “where you wanted to
be” that night, fret no longer! It’ll be the slam-bangety-est, most
chaotic New Year’s Eve Event in town! You’re invited!