Episode 99 – The Thing on the Doorstep – Part 1

It’s The Thing on the Doorstep!

Sponsored by Miskatonic Books

Thanks to guest Michael Reaves – read his blog here, check out his film and TV work here, dig on the books here, or just have a great time watching The Collect Call of Cthulhu

Fred Cross – you’ve brought us this far… can you close it out next week?

Post Comment 23 comments on “Episode 99 – The Thing on the Doorstep – Part 1

  • Michaelcthulhu on

    Did you guys post a day early? Anyway, It’s good to have you back, happy new year!

  • David Snusgrop on

    FINALLY you’re getting to this one! It’s been a favorite for years, a much underrated piece.

  • Keith McCaffety on

    Great to have you back, guys!

    I’ve had my own bit of body-switching horror while listening just now. Ive come to the jarring realization that, all these years, I’ve been picturing your voices with the wrong faces. Having been a fan since near the beginning, this will take some getting used to.

    Also, yeah, it doesn’t matter if HPL drops some clumsy clues about the girl’s powers, cause he has much bigger terrors in store. I think that’s always true with HPL.

  • Dark Wanderer on

    VERY good episode guys! Excellent reading and tone, good music, engaging discussion. Really enjoyed this one!

  • Genus Unknown on

    Great episode! The bit about the characters’ “Ferris Bueller – Cameron relationship” had me cracking up on the way to work.

    I still don’t care much for the story. It’s too long-winded (the words-to-story ratio is around 3:1), the Innsmouth connection is misleading and confusing (I keep waiting for the fishy hybrid stuff to come into play, which it never does), and… well, I guess those are my only real complaints about the story. The bad stuff just jumps out at me, and the good stuff doesn’t grab me. Maybe the podcast will change my opinion though.

  • H.Pony.Lovecraft on

    “And for My Little Pony, for all you bronies out there”
    *has desktop ponies dancing around on my computer*

  • Donovan K. Loucks on

    There’s plenty of atmosphere here that makes it clear that Salem was the basis for Arkham. The Derbys and Crowninshields were very well-known merchant families in Salem that intermarried. In The H.P. Lovecraft Companion, Philip Shreffler takes Lovecraft’s inspiration a step too far and claims that the Elias Hasket Derby and Crowninshield-Bentley houses were the Derby and Crowninshield houses of this story. However, there’s simply no reason to believe this, especially since there are several other Derby and Crowninshield houses in Salem (in fact, the Crowninshield-Bentley house was located in a much less conspicuous location in Lovecraft’s time). Nevertheless, visiting these two houses — which are open for tours — still provides a wonderful glimpse into the Salem atmosphere that inspired Lovecraft.

  • Mirko on

    Only one episode away from 100! You are doing an excellent job.
    Best wishes.
    M.

  • PRV on

    That Ghostbusters episode was great, had all the elemnts of HPL’s stories; shout-outs to his friends, fainting spells and a cleansing bolt of lightning. Kudos to Mr. Reaves for the great story. This leads me to think that those other “Ghostbusters” with the gorilla were inspired by the story of Arthur Jermyn.

  • Rev. Danno on

    This is the best!
    I tried to get PoC to interview Michael Reaves years ago. Glad someone is doing it.
    I love this story, now that I am married I love it more.
    Did Michael Reaves write the BatmanBeyond that is the same basic story as TotD?

  • Donovan K. Loucks on

    Genus Unknown wrote, “…the Innsmouth connection is misleading and confusing (I keep waiting for the fishy hybrid stuff to come into play, which it never does)…”

    Derby repeatedly mentions that Ephraim’s mind is trapped in a brain that is female and not “fully human”. Despite both of these drawbacks, he’s still capable of some pretty devilish stuff. Imagine what he’d be capable of if both of those handicaps were eliminated…

  • Marcus Good on

    As a non-sequiter, it’s been suggested that the *reason* Bill Murray was offered the role of Garfield was solely because some voice directing nerd had always wanted to see that Lorenzo Music-Bill Murray connection exploited.

    As for Fred from Scooby Doo, considering he’s also Megatron, Soundwave and half the Transformers, the gorilla in an X-Files episode, and a Snork or two, he’s most of your childhood recollections.

    And Egon was the Brain. As in Pinky and the..

  • Peter Tupper on

    I really liked this story, because it fit into the Innsmouth mythos, it’s creepy in an intimate way, and because the horrors were happening to people who were developed as characters, not ciphers as HPL often used.

  • Mark Brett on

    Good episode, guys. I’m with you on this story: it’s always been one of my favorites. I’ll even go your defense of it one further: I think the body-swapping is so obviously foreshadowed precisely because that’s the part we’re supposed to figure out. It’s the revelation that Asenath is actually Ephraim that’s supposed to be the really horrifying part. And that, I think, Lovecraft develops and reveals masterfully.

  • Genus Unknown on

    I find “Doorstep” needlessly long-winded. It shouldn’t take over 10,000 words to tell this story.

  • Jason Thompson on

    My thoughts:

    (1) Lovecraft, in his more mature less-sexist-but-still-racist mode, and his idea that the subjugation of women was an “Oriental” (read: Islamic/Arab/Semitic) idea corrupting white people… man, how little things have changed in 70 years.

    (2) The age difference between Lovecraft and his correspondence buddy, Helen Sully, was 15 years, the same as the age difference between Derby and Asenath. -_- Just sayin’. It might not have been *all* Sonia Greene memories in this fantasy of a middle-aged guy marrying some sexy girl in her twenties, and (drumroll) the horrible consequences therefrom.

  • Aram on

    Yeah, Mark Brett nailed it. There’s a possession within the possession.

    INCEPTION!

  • Cambias on

    Of course, Lovecraft also probably considered Christianity an Oriental affectation, just as Nietzsche and Spengler did.

    For me the awesome part of the story isn’t just that Asenath is really Ephraim, it’s the implication that Ephraim is just another link in the chain leading back . . . to . . . ?

  • Odilis Vlak on

    Happy new Mayas’ doom prophesies year. At least we’ll be able to reach 100 episodes. Anything that has to do with innsmouth is welcome in my imagination

    And please guys… stop to stick the “racism label” to any remark lovecraft did about anything out of Western White Culture. In the one you quoted, he simple was speaking about facts any anthropologist can corroborate.

  • Tim Scurr on

    Hey, just have to say I love this one and I’m glad you guys do too. It goes at a nice leisurely pace (it does after all span twenty or thirty years) and has heaps of Lovecraft world / mythos building and the traditional things hinted at and not really explored, which serve as excellent places for theimagination and other authors to expand his world from. Justin Geoffrey is refeenced in a Brian Lumley story found in his collection ‘Beneath the Moors and Darker Places’ though I cannot recall the name of the particular story. It is troubling to think of poor Edward’s honeymoon and his very own ‘Crying Game’ style discovery; ‘So, love, I’ll just lift up your nightie and – Oh. What. The. *SPEWSPEWSPEW*’ No wonder he returned with a look of peculiar sadness!

  • Mike on

    Cthulhu pony is best pony.

  • Mike on

    FYI: he wrote for an old Gen MLP show and not the new Gen, which is best Gen.

  • David from Nac on

    I have actually taken some classes in medieval metaphysics. Trippy stuff.

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