Sunday, January 12, 2020

Dracula (2020 BBC / Netflix series) Review


Ok so I'm sure most people have heard of this by now! I actually didn't know about it until I saw a review in the local paper, and just a couple of days later I got messages from several people. Oh you know me so well. So now, let me tell you what this Dracula / vampire nerd thought about it!

The series consists of three almost movie long episodes, similar to the new A Christmas Carol which came out recently (which I highly recommend, by the way! It's really dark and has interesting backstories). Dracula is played by Danish actor Claes Bang, and he's going for the more sexy (but mature) vampire. I'm really impressed by his English, I have to say.
The show has a very Mark Gatiss and Steven Moffat style, they got the same composers too, which was pretty easy to hear. They kept some aspects from the book and some inspiration from other adaptions, but it's overall a very ''Sherlock goes horror'' vibe, kind of mindfuck at times, like the last Sherlock season. I know Gatiss loves horror, I remember I once stumbled over his documentary series A History Of Horror. Speaking of, they made a documentary for this as well, called In Search Of Dracula (fun fact; Jonathan Ross did one with the same name in the 90s). I couldn't find that, but if / when I do, I will watch it.


The next three paragraphs consist of my thoughts while watching each episode:

Why are there so many flies?! Disgusting. I was prepared though, I know stuff like this can feature insects, so I made sure to finish my food before I started. But good news; no spiders!
Ok looks like we're going for the ''Harker and Renfield are the same person'' angle.
The nun is super inappropriate, but through her we get flashbacks to Harker's trip to Transylvania - with some annoying interruptions when she asks questions.
Dracula is a parody of himself. Did not like our first moments of him, when he's old looking.
But the rest of the first episode was decent, there was a lot of action, and it wasn't predictable. I recognise the castle as the same one from Nosferatu (1922)!

Episode two is in the same style as the first in terms of narration, but this time, bizzarely, Dracula is playing chess with and telling van Helsing about his journey on the Demeter (the episode is fittingly titled Blood Vessel). And apparently their conversation and game turns out to be some kind of dream sequence? I'm not quite sure. Jonathan Aris plays the captain of the ship, and among the passengers are newlyweds Lord Ruthven and Dorabella. I like that in this adaption we actually get to see what happened on the Demeter, which we don't in the book or most other adaptions. The end of the episode left me a little confused. See next paragraph!

Okay I can't possibly leave this out; the third episode takes place in the present.
We meet Lucy Westenra, and I really love what they did to her character. A woman of color who gets tons of likes on Instagram and goes night clubbing - a modern party girl! The perfect way to modernize Lucy. What happens to her here is even more horrible than in the book, you actually feel bad for her, while book Lucy is more ''good riddance, you were annoying''.
Of course Jack Seward, Quincey Morris and Arthur Holmwood make appearances, but only Jack is of importance. We barely get to see the others, really.
Also, I was wrong about one of the first things I thought when I started this; Renfield actually shows up! Played by Mark Gatiss himself. It's fun to see Dracula and Renfield actually interact.
One thing I came to think of; since Dracula is first shown looking ancient, and gets younger after feeding on Jonathan, why is he still young when he wakes up in the present? He hasn't had blood for 123 years, but doesn't seem hungry.
OMFG Dracula using Tinder, now THAT is hilarious. Nice spin on ''children of the night - what music they make'' and ''bloofer lady''.
I feel the ending was very... Sherlocky. I don't know how to feel about it. Also I didn't mention this before since it's kind of a spoiler for the first episode, but I just have to say that making van Helsing a woman and ''reincarnating'' her was a nice choice, even though that has been done before.


So in conclusion; I actually feel very similar about this as with Sherlock. It's not THAT great, but fun to watch, it can fuck with your head and frustrate you. I'd say if you enjoyed that, give this a go. And don't give up immediately, I know some people did that, and I can understand why, the first episode had quite a rocky start, but it got better. They were obviously not going for making another ''WE are finally gonna be the ones to stay true to the book!'', not at all. And I think that's a good thing. Dracula (and Sherlock) are literally the two characters that have been adapted the most in literary history, and I think they did a pretty decent job at bringing new life to and modernizing them.

Sunday, January 5, 2020

Will my cat eat my eyeballs? by Caitlin Doughty Review


“I'm bringing body back. Returning corpses, but they're not intact.
Kids, this is a Justin Timberlake reference.
You're fine not knowing who that is.”

I have been following Caitlin Doughty ever since she started out on youtube. Her very first sponsor was Audible, so I decided to try an audiobook for the very first time since I was.. a toddler. And of course I chose one of her books! I've been listening to her voice for years, so I thought that would be fitting (I read 700-1000 wpm, so I don't really like being read to).

Listening to it is like listening to a playlist of her videos. She's a very good narrator, in this case I think it was very fitting that she recorded her own audiobook. Nobody else could have read this like she does, and kept with her humor.

Caitlin answers 35 questions about death from kids, dedicating a chapter to each. She answers them really well, and gives a lot of facts related to the question. It's really interesting! There's science, humor, history and death customs around the world.

Now I'd say this isn't a book for ALL children. I think they'd have to have been talked to about death, and understand that what happens to bodies after death is a little icky. There are also medical terms and other words in it that might be difficult to understand for children (sex is also mentioned).
So if you're wondering about the book being suitable for your child, that really depends on the child and their knowledge, experience and state of mind.

I also think this book would be entertaining to a lot of adults! Not the squeamish ones though. But if you're interested in death, this is a great way to learn some new things. And of course Caitlin's Ask A Mortician youtube channel!

Saturday, December 14, 2019

2019 Highlight Reel

January 2010 vs November 2019.
I still have the skirt on the left, and the top on the right I think I've had since back then!
Bonus: Almost exactly 10 years apart.
Same skirt, and I haven't really changed much!
The decade is coming to an end, crazy, right? I'm not gonna recap the entire decade for you, just the last year of it. And what a year it has been. Let's look back at the highlights!

My best nine on Instagram this year
The year literally started with me deciding to propose to Simen. I did it in March, on our third anniversary, and now we are engaged! That's definitely the biggest thing that has happened this year, even though nothing has really changed, except that we're planning our wedding. Read the proposal story here!


Backtracking a bit... In January I started participating in a medical study. I am taking a pill against my atopic eczema, and it's the best treatment I've ever tried. It's not perfect, but the fact that it has kept my symptoms to a minimum for almost a year now is amazing.

In April one of my best friends Teresia came for a surprise visit. She drove 12 hours from Sweden just for me! I thought that stuff just happened in the movies. But one day I was woken up BY HER! It was so crazy, I can't believe someone would do that for me. Simen had of course helped plan this.
Here's the blog post I wrote from that weekend.


In May I started hosting meetups for the local goths. As many as 18 people have showed up for these, and I keep doing them every month. It's very casual, all ages can come (gothed up if they want) and just talk and hang out. The local goth night is also still going, and I'm so happy we now have a small local scene with events. Just 2 years ago I could only dream of it! And now I've helped make it happen. Earlier this year I also started the blog and facebook page Goth Norway, where we collect and share goth and related events around the country, so people can find them easily.


In June we went to WGT as usual. Met so many people! Old friends, online friends for the first time and new ones. Saw many great bands, mostly newer ones this time! All blogs about WGT can be found under the WGT tag here on the blog.





Days before my 25th birthday, I was officially diagnosed with aspergers. I just wrote a big post about it here. The day before my birthday, I went to Oslo to see The Cure for the first time! It was amazing.


On my birthday Simen met me at Oslo airport, and we flew to Berlin together. By the night was over, we had arrived in Hildesheim, and our friend and host Benedikt greeted us at the train station. That weekend Simen and I experienced our first M'era Luna! We saw Fields Of The Nephilim, VNV Nation, Deathstars and more, and partied until late. Check out my blog post on it here!




At the end of August we moved to a bigger apartment. Further outside of the city centre, 30 sqm bigger and €200 cheaper. Definitely worth it! We quickly filled it up and made it our own, and now it looks really nice. Check out the full apartment tour here!


In September we saw De Press here in Bergen, plus went to Oslo to see The Sisters Of Mercy. Simen got his first tattoo, and I got some small new ones, all made by my friend Marthe. Blog post covering that weekend here.

In October five of us here in Bergen drove up to Trondheim to attend a new goth festival that had popped up. The roadtrip itself was fun, we visited Nidarosdomen cathedral and had a blast at the festival. It was such a cool and punk atmosphere, and everyone (including the bands) were so friendly. Check out the blog on that trip here.


Before the holidays we will most likely have a wedding date, reception venue booked and save the dates sent out. I just received my wedding dress in the mail, so things are starting to happen and get more real! We will spend the holidays with Simen's family as usual, and then have a dinner and drinks at home with some friends on new year's eve.

So those were the notable happenings in my life in 2019! I'm very satisfied. I'm proud that I've managed to be so social and spent time with so many friends this year. Life is good, we've taken a few trips and grown as people. 2018 feels so far away now. Here's my recap of that, if you want to look back on that too with me!

This year I've had a ''quarter life crisis'' as I deemed it over turning 25. It's not that I feel I'm getting ''old'', it's more that now outdated expectation that you should have this and that, and your whole life in order. Also that 25 is often deemed the prime, at least of your youth. While I am happy and satisfied with my life, I always strive for more. I want all the happiness I can get! Now I also want more stability, and a more calmer life. I cherish the quality friendships that I have, and I want to be able to look back on this time as a wonderful time. By the time my birthday rolled around, I had come to terms with it. Time will just go by faster and faster, and we're now entering a new decade. 2020 will be the year I get married, so a new chapter of my life begins! I don't think much will change really, but it's definitely a milestone. And before I know it, I'll be 30! But first; bring it on, 2020.

Friday, December 6, 2019

My Top Music Of 2019

2019 has been a great year for music. I originally thought I would just share what I've been listening to this year, but then I thought I might do a top 10 albums that were released this year. I thought that was a little ambitious, but then I ended up coming up with more than that! So here are my top 14 albums of 2019, as well as other stuff I've been loving this year.

 This album is pretty much perfection. Very strong throughout, and even the bonus track I Don't Need A Hero is great. There is also a drumless version of Wild Animal as a bonus track, but I don't think it's as good! I'm just waiting for the drums, haha. With the new album being this good, it was a no-brainer for me to see Hante. again at WGT this year. I loved it! I'm sure all Hante. fans have listened to the new album already. But if you haven't heard Hante. before, check out all of her stuff! According to Spotify Wrapped I've listened to her for 30 hours this year.

Simply a beautiful album. Sadly it's so short! Only 7 songs (30 minutes). My favorite song (out of all their songs) is Wave, which they released as a single a couple of years ago. I didn't buy this album until I saw them at Trondheim Crawling in October, and since I had talked to them that night, I got them to sign it for me! Really nice guys. I think I discovered them when they played WGT last (2017)? Good show then too, but it's definitely something else to see them in such an intimate setting as I did recently.

I got to know Tollef from Schodig online, and when he came here to Bergen, he gave me a copy of their new album. When I put it on, I instantly fell in love! Nerdy weird synth pop you wanna dance to, and great lyrics (though in Norwegian, see my full review for some of the meanings).


There were a lot of people who complained that this album was ''too light''. I think it's fantastic! It was released in summer, so I thought it was pretty fitting. Drab to me is very ethereal, light, airy and dreamlike, and that is exactly what this album is.


Very classic gothrock (with emphasis on rock there)! Some darkwave elements too. A really good album that stays strong throughout the whole thing. If you haven't checked out Sonsombre yet, you definitely should!

I've been absolutely loving Bragolin since they were announced for WGT this year. Loved their show there, and bought their first album, which I've spinned to death. Suddenly they dropped a new album this summer! I have no idea who Adam Tristar is, but it's apparently a full collab. So you've got Bragolin's sound mixed with what I guess is Tristar's sound. Honestly I would have preferred a pure Bragolin album, but I'm not complaining!

I discovered these Danes when they were announced for WGT this year, and the title track has been stuck in my head SO many times since then. Their show there was pretty good, by the way! They make great modern post-punk, and this is already their third album! It's not amazing, since a lot of the songs kind of sound the same (but I like their sound), but there are some tempo changes. I don't think it was very fitting to put the title track at the end though. Definitely worth checking out!


Ok this is kind of cheating as it's technically a compilation album consisting of songs previously released on EPs and singles. But I love them so much, so I'm including it! There are some fantastic songs on here, and it showcases a lot of what they can do, with different sounds and a couple of them being experimental. See my full review on the album over on Obscura Undead.


Chill, but upbeat and dancy at the same time - How did they do that?! A very good album, not the best they've done, but still very enjoyable at home on the couch or in the club! Boy Harsher was one of my top artists this year, really been loving dancing to them.

I'm a sucker for that purple! So this album are re-released tracks from Porl King's project Miserylab, a lot of people were bummed out by that. But I hadn't heard them, so to me they were new! Plus these are a little ''Rosetta Stone-yfied'' and just sound much better than the original Miserylab tracks.

For many, this isn't what they expected, especially the fifth track La Maldad! The album has a lighter sound compared to their previous two, but still gothic and as danceable as ever. The vocals are still the same though. Time will tell if it will be regarded as good as their other albums, but it definitely has some songs that will add to their repertoire of dancefloor hits!

Ok this is the odd one out in this list, I guess. Black metal! One of the pioneers of norwegian black metal came with a new album not that long ago, and have finally gone back to their De Mysteriis Dom Sathanas sound. An epic album! See my full review here.

I picked up this album when they played in my city. It's very unique, eclectic and fun. Check out my full review here. I definitely recommend checking out De Press if you haven't yet!

Not only has Hélène de Thoury released a Hante. album this year, but also one with Minuit Machine! It's decent, but not as good as their last album Violent Rains. Highlights: Prey/Hunter and Fear Of Missing Out.

Even though I've gotten much better at listening to newer stuff (instead of being stuck in the 80's), I haven't only listened to the artists above! Here's my Spotify 2019 Wrapped. The top songs are by Linea Aspera, Tempers, Soft Kill and Second Still. If you're interested in my full top 100, click here!
Find out yours here

And according to Visualify my top artists are The Mission, De Press, VNV Nation, White Lies, Fields Of The Nephilim and A Slice Of Life. There's also Spotify.me, but I don't think that's super insightful as it only gives you lifetime and recent. I also own a lot of music physically and use Bandcamp, so no matter what it won't really be accurate. I've listened to a lot of Creux Lies for example, but I own their CD so that won't show up on iTunes before it makes it to the most played of all time.

So I hope you enjoyed this post and maybe found some new bands to enjoy! It took me a long time to write this up, since I listened to every album to be able to score, rank and review it. Next week I will review my life in 2019!

Saturday, November 30, 2019

Apartment Tour!

I realized that during the.. oh my god, THREE years I've had this blog, I've never done an apartment tour. We've also happened to have lived in three different apartments during that time. We haven't even moved every year! Well, three months ago we moved to a bigger and cheaper apartment (but further away from the city centre), and we've just now finally finished everything. So let me show you around our home!

Front door and hallway - Featuring coat hooks in my height!

Bathroom - Not very glamorous...

But I love all the space we get here!

A bright green closet, what's hiding in there?

A whole mess, LOL

Kitchen with a bright orange feature wall



Simen's gaming room

With a sleeping couch for guests
(Also a big poster of me that I haven't let him hang up before now)

Dining table


Basically what sold me on the apartment. Painted in the corner!

IKEA bookshelves with more DIY shelves added in.
I can add or remove shelves as needed!

Vintage cabinet from America that I thrifted for €50!

Newly installed fireplace.
Our old one was beautiful, but them pesky fire regulations...


SAY HI, SIMEN.

Yes, we still have our stuffed animals, ok.

Loving the huge closet!

So that was that! I didn't want to write too much, since there were a lot of photos. Hope you enjoyed, and like the way we made the place our own! We own all the furniture shown (not counting the kitchen itself and the big bathroom stuff), and a lot of it is second hand, and even free! You can definitely take the same goth approach to clothing and apply it to home decor. Live the best spooky life you can!

If you're curious about anything, just ask. And now that it's December, I will put up some of our (black) yule decor! I think I'll just post photos of that on Instagram, but we'll see. I have at least planned a post about the highlights of 2019, and another about music. So you will definitely have that before the year is out! I might do a post about the holidays if I have time. See you soon!
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...