DNA Lounge: Wherein we have some seasonal cocktails, and Uber is still trying to fuck the world.

First up, the happy news: for October, we have a bunch of new cocktails available for pick-up or delivery:

  • Essence of Newt: Herradera blanco, Cointreau, Tamarin simple syrup, and lime.

  • Beetlejuice: Bulleit rye, pears, a splash of cognac, simple syrup, Absinthe, and Peychauds bitters.

  • Dark Ectoplasm: Pumpkin horchata and Kraken dark rum.

  • Light Ectoplasm: Pumpkin horchata, sweet, sweet DNA Lounge Brand Vodka, and a splash of Kahlua.

Delivered in a mason jar, 3 or 4 servings each, depending on how you drink. Order now from dnapizza.com!

Next up: Press! The future! Doooooom!

Here's a recent article about a number of San Francisco venues and our Independent Venue Alliance: The price of survival: What's the future of San Francisco's indie performance spaces? I have a few zingers in here:

When I broach the topic of opening his location to an in-person audience, DNA Lounge owner Jamie Zawinski rejects the "completely, utterly impractical" idea.

"For us to have a small enough audience, plus enough staff to ensure that they are behaving safely, would mean the ticket price would have to be so ridiculously high that nobody would pay it," Zawinski said. DNA Lounge -- which has always livestreamed shows from its two stages for free on its official website -- has averaged three-five weekly shows since the pandemic began, including Vice Reine's monthly Star Crash electronic dance party.

"We are in the business of putting on sweaty concerts that cost $8-$20," he says. "Asking us to 'pivot' to seated dinner theater at $1,000-a-head is just not realistic.

As Zawinski bluntly puts it, "We all need material support, by which I mean money -- from city, state and federal sources. That's it. It's obvious, and it's not complicated. Without that, there are no more independent venues by the end of the pandemic."

BTW, the fact that Cheeto Mussolini and Kentucky Palpatine petulantly decided to cancel the second Federal stimulus package means that the Save our Stages provisions that were on track to be included in it are not happening, so all of your favorite venues are fucked, and independent music is dead.

Next up: FUCK UBER.

I hope you've all received your mail-in ballot by now, but if you haven't turned it in yet, please make sure you vote NO ON PROP 22. Look, this is all you need to know: If Uber wants it, it is evil, and you definitely want the opposite. Uber and Lyft just spent $180 million dollars on a PR blitz to convince you that they can't afford to pay their employees a living wage:

Uber, Lyft, Instacart and Doordash wrote Proposition 22 to create a special exemption for themselves from California law that requires app-based companies to provide basic protections to their workers. Now they're spending more than $180 million on Prop 22, the most expensive ballot measure in US history, to boost their profits by denying their drivers' right to a minimum wage, paid sick leave and safety protections.

Also, Instacart is requiring their employees (sorry, "non-employee independent contractors") to distribute pro-Prop 22 propaganda:

It's like fast food workers telling you vote against minimum wage before ordering, or attendants required to announce support for anti union politicians before flight. If this isn't illegal, it should be.

For the other propositions and candidates, Broke-Ass Stuart has a good guide.

And I shouldn't need to say this, but if you don't vote for Biden, you're voting for Fascism and very likely for the United States never having free elections again, so fucking vote Biden. Hold your nose if you have to, but do it. The endgame of your "protest vote" is my friends in camps.

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Recent Movies

Yesterday I started writing a new screen saver for the first time since lockdown began, and it went pretty badly and made me feel like I'm terrible at everything, so I returned to my core competency of getting drunk and watching horror movies while farting into my couch:


Darlin' (2019): A decent and surprisingly bloody raised-by-wolves story (not to be confused in any way with Raised By Wolves). The priest was such a Snidely Whiplash, though, he nearly ruined it.

The Woman (2011): I didn't realize that Darlin' was a sequel to this, but I'm kind of glad I watched them in the wrong order! This is fantastic, and it makes living in the woods away from people seem like a really solid plan.

Raised By Wolves: This hits all of Ridley Scott's weird late-career kinks, mixing Prometheus with Kingdom of Heaven and going nowhere. Milk blood, chestbursters, panspermia, plus, precocious children, and a plot centering around "your life has no meaning unless you breed." Also the androids talk in a "beep boop" cadence that you would expect from Star Trek and wouldn't accept from Alexa. Also it has that idiotic thing where the planet is riddled with Alameda-Weehawken Burrito Tunnels that go all the way through the core, just like on Planet Jar-Jar. Peter Watts savaged it, too. He hated it almost as much as he hated Humans, which is saying a lot.

Antebellum: Great and scary. The fake-out was a good fake-out. Janelle Monáe is a treasure.

Lights Out: Solid haunting story about some kind of monster that can only materialize in the dark. Good creepy effects, feels a tiny bit like the first Nightmare on Elm Street.

Captain Kronos, Vampire Hunter (1974): This movie is nuts, even by the standards of Hammer Horror. There's really a surprising amount of batshit worldbuilding and nonstandard vampirism. It's kind of the 70s version of The Witcher.

Enola Holmes: This was pretty cute.

Grimm: "What if Supernatural, but furries, and cops?" I'm through season 2 so far. It's more "Supernatural" than cop show, but it's really tough to watch this TV fantasy of moral, law-abiding, non-racist cops, who just happen to have to do some extrajudicial killings every now and then, you know, for the kids; while knowing that the real-life version of Portland cops are 100% literal Nazis. (I don't mean to single out Portland. Obviously it's a fair assumption that any given cop is a Nazi. It's just that Portland has really "leaned in" to that recently.)

Level 16: I feel like I've seen another movie with this exact plot, and also taking place on the set of the Ladytron "Seventeen" video. It was ok.

XX: A 4-story horror anthology by women. It's pretty good.

Books of Blood and Tales from the Hood 3: These are not good.

Rabid (2019): Normally I avoid remakes, but this was by the directors of American Mary, and it's great. Excellent body horror and good use of hallucinations to keep you guessing what was real, and it didn't go in the direction I thought it would. If The Neon Demon was a better movie, it might have been this. It's also far superior to Cronenberg's 1977 Rabies, which is really pretty crappy (and I say this as a Cronenberg fan).

See No Evil 2: I never saw the first one, but I watched this because it was also by the Soskas. It's a forgettable by-the-numbers Friday the 13th clone where an indestructible demon chops up some screaming people, and nothing valued is lost. Yawn.

Spontaneous: This is excellent. Students at a high school just start exploding at random. There's an interminable quarantine. Nobody knows if they will even have a future. This has nothing to do with current events, whatever could you mean?

Primal: This is brief but very good. A cartoon about a caveman/dinosaur team-up. No dialog at all and really solid storytelling. The episode with the giant bats is almost Fury Road.

The Pale Door: Kind of an old west Dusk Til Dawn situation. Not bad.

Utopia (2020): Again, I avoid remakes, but John Cusack? Well, this remake of a British series about a vast conspiracy around a global pandemic and a graphic novel was completely unnecessary. The original had an amazing look to it, with very weird use of color. Though the original started of great and then kind of fizzled out. So I guess what this remake brings to the table is... bland cinematography and American accents?

Ready Or Not: A family of rich twits try to invite a new bride into their family by murdering her. All the class war of Knives Out plus a lot more gore. It's pretty fantastic. I will now watch anything Samara Weaving is in.

The Woman in Black: I guess this is some kind of Victorian haunted house story, but it thinks "soundtrack jump-scares" are what passes for "suspense" so I gave up halfway through before literally anything of note had happened. (Update: I see that I had already reviewed the first 20 awful minutes of this movie in 2015! Oops!)

The Wolf of Snow Hollow: A very witty and funny small-town-werewolf movie.

The Boys: Season 2 was very good. Good use of crypto-nazis.

The Doorman: It's Die Hard starring Batwoman. Eh, it passes the time.

Straight To Hell (1987): Every time I watch this I am again struck by.... how did this happen? How does this exist?

Previously.

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