Join us on a second date with Keziah Mason and her leetle friend – we’re having more Dreams in the Witch House!
Thanks again to guest Kenneth Hite and reader Dave Stinton.
Next week: the thrilling conclusion!
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Finnaly, Part Two is up! Can’t wait to hear it!
Oh, and I’ll just leave this here:
I share many of Joshi’s criticisms. I felt there was no need at all for the Old Ones to show up. Further, I found it laughable that Gillman would show his little “action figure” to every professor at Arkham and not one of them knew what it was. Lovecraft has hammered into our heads that everybody at Arkham has read the Necronomicon and they always know EVERYTHING. This is a pretty good story, but way too long and too much extraneous junk.
downlaod time was 55 minutes on iTunes!! Yikes
Orne was also the name of Captain James P. Orne in The Horror at St. Martin’s Beach… just another one of those Lovecraftian surnames that keeps popping up. =)
Hi, hi. If you want to we can always put mirror of your podcast on my webserver – Prague, Czech Republic.
Regardless of the criticism people may have with this story (which you guys did a great job addressing in this weeks installment), “Witch House” for me is one of Lovecraft’s scariest, and definitely tensest, works.
Also, I know the proper pronunciation of New England place names comes up a lot, but the second “h” in Haverhill is silent, and the “a” is long. It should be pronounced like “hay-vril”. Many New Englanders get this one wrong sometimes so don’t worry!
I always enjoyed the Mythos science in this story, especially the hyperforms and connections with and From Beyond. The “violet witch light” in both stories actually has an analog in Cherenkov Radiation, although eerily enough it wasn’t described until after Lovecraft’s death. The source of Gilman’s sunburn, perhaps?
I keep having this image of Wizard of Oz in my head when I hear the Tall Negro in a robe, an old hag, White guy in nightgown, and a rat.
@Keith McCaffety ~ You should keep in mind, the very fact that they would have an intimate knowledge of the Necronomicon (combined with the time of Year) would likely make them….”reluctant”….to offer any help on this bizzare matter. Especially since they were only able to identify about three of the Elements which compose the figure.
@Eric Crabtree ~ YOU HAVE RUINED WIZARD OF OZ FOR ME FOREVUUUUUUUUUR!! XD
I generally try to read each Lovecraft story as a stand-alone piece. So even if some critters that bear a striking resemblance to the Elder Things show up, I try not to think of it in those terms. Instead, I just pretend I’ve never read any other Lovecraft stories, and simply say “hey, there’s some monsters.”
And I think those monsters belong in the story. Their presence demonstrates that there are more things in Heaven and Earth than are dreamed of in Gilman’s (and our, the readers’) philosophy. Being taken to an alien planet who-knows-where in time and space, and seeing these really weird creatures in cahoots with Keziah and Jenkin, just drives home the cosmic scope of the witch’s shenanigans. What looks at first glance to be some fairly Puritanical mythology is revealed to be much bigger and crazier than that. It also, of course, confirms his theories about traveling through space via 4th-dimensional mathematics.
If we ask “why Elder Things,” we could just as easily ask “why not?” Maybe it was his idea of an in-joke. What matters in this scene isn’t which monsters from previous Lovecraft stories reappear and why, but what traveling to an alien planet in his pajamas means to Gilman’s situation.
Lovecraft probably just wanted to sneak in a subtle (at the time, before an entire nerd culture arose around his fiction and its mythology) reference to another one of his stories. He’d need one of his alien races, so they couldn’t be ghouls or Deep Ones, which pretty much leaves him with the Elder Things and the Mi-Go (“Shadow Out of Time” hadn’t been written yet). Maybe he flipped a coin.
Has anyone noticed that shubnigorath is the “black goat of the woods with a thousand young” and Nylarhotep has cloven hoves? Coincidence or is Nylarhotep secretly shubnigorath in drag? Da-Da-Dhuuuuuu!
Can we have Ken Hite every episode? So good.
I want an Elder Thing action figure.
Great episode. You guys are knocking this one out of the park. Thanks!
Master Lackey, here are some more disturbing witches familars names (or impes names) from a broadside of 1650 culled from an interrogation of a suspect witch by the notorious Witchfinder Generall, Matthew Hopkins.
Sacke & Sugar
and last but possibly most nuzzleworthy and disturbed…
Those would all make excellent cat names.
Damn, mo Elder Thing Action Figures.
Does anybody remember the 80’s movie ‘The Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai Across the Eighth Dimension’? (or something like that) It had Peter Weller as the TITULAR rock band / scientist who discovers a way to enter the empty space in atomic shells and hard wires it into his car, and John Lithgow as an interatomic alien thing. Just reminded me a bit of Witch House, is all.
I think some of the criticism of this story comes from the fact that Nyarlathotep (and maybe Azathoth) somehow think Walter Gilman is worth their time.
If Keziah Mason, self-identified Colonial witch, wants to mess around with a Black Book and sacrifice babies, that’s one thing. But for the Thing With A Thousand Faces or the Monstrous Nuclear Chaos to prance around dressed up as a witch-sabbath devil (with cloven hoofs, yet!) seems to make humanity, and this one Miskatonic math nerd in particular, way more important than they should be.
Out of curiosity, why aren’t you guys hosting the audio on Libsyn? Don’t they have unlimited bandwidth for fairly cheap?
Cannot tell you how many times I’ve heard people cite Margaret Murray as though her theories aren’t completely disproven. The next time someone cites “Witch-Cult of Western Europe” in debate, I’m going to throw the entire Cthulhu mythos at them. (Possibly literally.)
Also grinning at the mention of April 27th in the story…my birthday. 🙂
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