Peer Review Comments on the Experiment of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde

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Reviewer 1: “I would like to address the study’s complete absence of a control group, for starters, but the study design isn’t the only thing here that’s out of control. The clinical applications for this type of, uh, ‘research’ are frankly rather limited, and the study’s contributions to science are quite small given the countless existing, documented cases of personality disorder (though, admittedly, most of those involve opiate- or ethanol-based agents). A quick scroll through the local arrest records existing literature on the subject should provide a sufficient overview.

Regarding the activating agent here, described as a ‘chemical salt’, it appears from the PI’s notes that the integrity of the solvent (and definitely that of the experimenter) may have been compromised. Might be something to look into.

Finally, though it seems the intent was a generous gesture, giving the experimental subject access to his own private residence, domestic staff and personal bank account appears to grossly exceed the definition of a “study incentive”. The IRS has been duly informed.”

Reviewer 2: “There appears to be no provision for reporting adverse effects, and no plans to stop the experiment as required in such cases — it’s almost as if the researchers thought the FDA’s entire regulatory protocol was ‘What the hell, let’s just see where this goes’. For some of the events recounted here in this little one-man Stanford Prison Experiment, I would like to speak to the IRB and the FDA and probably also the FBl.”

Reviewer 3: “Setting aside the question of the study’s contributions, it appears that the manuscript itself was a source of some tension. It seems from the numerous pen marks and annotations that the PI and the experimental subject had some lingering, rancorous disagreement over who, exactly, was to be first author.”

Image Source / CC-BY-SA-3.0

Airbnb Listing for the Pit and the Pendulum

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We have a spacious one-room apartment available; it comes with a single bed and is located in a historic building shared with a quaint little monastic organization. This room is a basement room with an open floor plan, making it fully adaptable to your needs, and it’s also completely soundproof — while you’re here, go ahead and make some noise. In fact, scream all you want! No one will hear you. 🙂

This room is naturally cool in summer and comes tastefully accented with granite floors, granite walls and a granite ceiling. Even the doors would be granite, if there were any. If it’s cold outside, you’ll find the floors, walls and ceiling can all be heated, so you’re entirely surrounded with a toasty warmth you just can’t escape. Moreover, the living space is fully adjustable: walls can be moved as needed. We’d be more than happy to demonstrate this for you if you like.

The room also features a cavernous lower-level space, where you can stash your luggage during your stay. Feel free to explore this space as much as you want! This deep, perpendicular, hole-shaped storage area is fully accessible from anywhere in the room — just walk (very carefully) right across the floor.

Finally, the room also features a vaulted ceiling and one rather distinctive architectural centerpiece. It’s kind of like a huge chandelier or a mobile, but better. You’ll just have to see it.

Whether you’re planning on a week-long vacation or an overnight stay, we’d sure love to have you! Please be our guest for as long as you can.

If interested, call and ask for Torquemada.

**Room may have a small rodent problem. Ask for details.

Image Source / Public Domain

Is There A Poltergeist In My House Or Do I Just Have A Cat?

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It’s 3AM. I wake in the darkness. All the cabinet doors are open.

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Halfway through “Dateline”, a ceramic shepherdess in a pink flowered bonnet flies off the mantle.

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From the darkest corner of the closet, a purgatory for old purses and the remnants of last year’s casualwear, a nauseating smell suddenly emanates.

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The car keys are placed on the side table. Then gone. Hours later, they are found underneath the couch.

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I am walking down a dark hallway. An unseen object barrels against my shins. I experience a brief moment of levitation.

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While dining on homemade tuna casserole, I pause at a faint sound of wailing. There is a sensation of tiny needles pricking my thigh.

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I wake at night to the rasp of a wordless incantation, a hacking staccato, the dreaded sound of something being called up from the depths to burst into our mortal realm. I shudder at the realization I must clean it up tomorrow.

Image Source / CC

Soak Your Cares Away at the Werewolf Spa!

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Open until sunrise! Book early for holidays and full moons.

Changing rooms available (both sartorial and corporeal).

Enjoy our new soundproof sauna, complete with soothing interior waterfall and patented artificial moonlight. Our steam room will make you howl with pleasure!

Complimentary organic green tea and raw beef strips (free range) included with all services.

All our spa treatments include a full-body scrub and deep-cleaning shampoo and conditioner treatment, followed by a goat’s milk body wrap to hydrate the skin and coat and restore shine.

Restorative mud bath also available to nourish the skin and replenish elasticity.

Treat yourself to one of our deep-tissue massages, followed by complimentary belly rubs and ear scritches.

Teeth cleaning and whitening — guaranteed to remove every trace of whomever you ate!

Claw filing and trimming available, with optional nail strengthener and cuticle treatment. French tips extra.

We also offer pedicures (two feet or four) — our all-natural scrub and essential oils will rejuvenate your feet after one of those all-night runs with the pack!

Finish with a trim and our exclusive Full Moon Blowout — reduces coat frizz and maintains natural volume and bounce. Optional coloring added to hide those unsightly grays!

Call for appointments.

Image Source / Public Domain

Peer Review Comments on Frankenstein’s Monster

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Reviewer 1: “Are the neck bolts strictly necessary? It seems that the study’s author could have substituted a lithium ion battery, or a solar panel, or perhaps a wall plug and an extension cable. Maybe even a rotation-powered generator with a large wheel and a particularly enthusiastic hamster would work. It’s a thought.

I’m also confused about the numerous scars and the decision to use visible stitching — it appears there was no plastic surgeon available to consult during assembly. Or perhaps the local drugstore was just out of gas-tank-sized jars of cocoa butter?

Furthermore, I’m not quite sure if the sample really needed to be gigantic to ensure proper construction. The author may want to review some of the recent advances in laparoscopic surgery.”

Reviewer 2: “This study is not innovative; it is a slight modification of an existing method. A pilot study for animation from dead matter has been detailed in the earlier publication ‘Genesis’ (see God, et. al.). The author touches on this work but is rather vague about citing it, though the theoretical parallels are striking.

Additionally, the author’s decision to withhold key elements of his methodology is, quite frankly, questionable. This makes reproducibility impossible and impugns the veracity and reliability of his results. It’s almost as if he didn’t want the study replicated.”

Reviewer 3: “Entirely unimpressive. This is not the monster I would have created.”

Image Source / Public Domain

Awwwfully Gothic Shelter Pets: The Hound of the Baskervilles

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This bloodhound/mastiff mix up for adoption has a lovely shorthair coat of raging hellfire — you’ll find there’s no need for a flashlight (or a heater!) for those early-winter-morning poop sessions. He loves to play fetch, especially with the souls of the damned, and he also likes long walks on the moor, followed by short bursts of intense cardio when he chases down your neighbors as the spirit of infernal vengeance. If you’ll be out during the day, toss him a nyla bone or a chunk of brimstone to gnaw on and he’ll just play hell with it. At night his resonant deep-throated howl will lull you to sleep, even as it has your neighbors praying for deliverance.

This big boy prefers to remain outdoors — unfortunately, he does not do well with kennels or other flammable housing. He is up-to-date on all shots within the last two or three millennia, and he makes an excellent playmate for children as long as they’re in hellfire-retardant clothing. However, as far as other pets go, he is best as an only dog; he is not good with cats or other demonic familiars.

So when Halloween comes around, let the neighbors keep squeezing their overfed Dachshunds into those twee little hot dog buns. If you’d rather have a satanic Snoopy, this is your guy!

Image Source / Public Domain

10 Popular Paint Colors for Haunted Houses

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Surely-there’s-a-perfectly-mundane-reason-for-the-cheap-rent rose

Footsteps-in-the-corridor carnelian

Our-neighbors-tell-the-most-charming-stories-about-this-place periwinkle

Was-that-the-wind wisteria

Whispers-in-the-abandoned-hallway heather

Indefinably-menacing-domestic-staff serge

Someone-should-go-check-out-that-noise-in-the-attic aubergine

Why-is-the-nursery-door-open ochre

Whose-hand-was-I-holding heliotrope

I-don’t-think-we’re-getting-the-deposit-back beige

Image Source / Sean MacEntee, CC

Prince Prospero, As Your Royal Event Coordinator I’d Like To Pitch You A Few Guaranteed No-Fail Straight-Up Genius Party Ideas

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“The prince had provided all the appliances of pleasure. There were buffoons, there were improvisatori, there were ballet-dancers, there were musicians, there was Beauty, there was wine. All these and security were within. Without was the ‘Red Death.'” — “The Masque of the Red Death”, Edgar Allan Poe

So here’s just a few of my certifiably brilliant ideas for a totally baller party. I’m thinking, since we need to get away anyway due to the widespread virulent plague, we should definitely hold it waaaay up in the mountains. Say, at an abbey — remote, secluded, such a great setup. We won’t have any trouble getting hundreds of people up those narrow mountain roads or anything. None at all. Also, everyone’ll totally be able to find it without GPS. It’s not like they can get lost. When did a party ever get lost in the mountains? It’ll be perfect.

Now, here’s what I’m thinking for the decor. We’ve got all different colors, we’ve got blue, purple, green, orange, etc. We go with just one color scheme in each room. Very trendy. Very po-mo. It’ll really bring out the whole environment. In the last room we go with all black, but just to change it up a bit, add some red light filters to really make it pop. So early-Madonna. People will go nuts. Also, they’ll definitely be able to mingle in there without knocking over the canapes or tripping on stoners or banging a knee on the end table. Not even remotely an issue.

For a centerpiece, I’m thinking we should go with one of those old-style grandfather clocks. Maybe stick it in the black room. Let’s see if we can get a mike in it, too, so when it chimes everyone can hear it. Maybe turn it up so loud that the live band has to stop whenever it sounds the hours. People will love it. It’ll be such a great conversation piece, trust me. Totally unforgettable.

Oh I almost forgot — the ‘pièce de résistance’, as they say. So, my second cousin’s roommate has this costume. It’s practically a museum piece. It’s fantastic. I’m thinking we have him appear suddenly in the crowd. Right at the stroke of twelve. Center of the room, so everyone’s watching. It’ll be a hit. Seriously, this costume is amazing. He’s won awards for it at ComicCon. It’s unbelievable. People will be talking about it for weeks. He’s just really gonna knock ‘em dead.”

Image Source / Tom, CC

One-Star Etsy Reviews for the Yellow Wallpaper

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“The wallpaper color doesn’t match the photo, and it also stains everything it touches. It’s ruined my blazer, my yoga pants and my entire sense of personal autonomy.”

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“Everyone keeps telling me it’s great, but it looks cheap and I hate it. Turns out it’s really hard to remove, though!”

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“Easy to install — some guys even insisted on putting it up for me. But as soon as it was up I wanted it gone. I tried to tear it off in massive strips but then gave up and started donating to NOW.”

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“I tried to follow the pattern with my eyes and found myself awake at 3am posting Facebook rants about the second shift. Would not recommend.”

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“WTF is this ‘No Returns’ policy??”

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“I finally got myself what every woman wants — a room of one’s own. But then my husband covered it in this heinous wallpaper!”

Image Source / Public Domain

Mrs. Grose, the Housekeeper of Bly, Leaves an Awkward Voicemail at Ghostbusters Headquarters

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So I was wondering if you lot could come out here, as it seems there’s a couple of ghosts about the house. At least I think there is. Or maybe not. To be honest it’s all a bit vague, really. Maybe you and your proton packs could sort it out; I’m rather inclined to chuck the whole affair and grab the first train back to London.

I mean I haven’t seen anything, the kids haven’t seen anything, only the governess has seen them. But she says they’re everywhere: outside the windows, on top of the house, in the stairwells. Once even in her room.

Thank the Lord, at least the loo seems safe.

She sees them all the time, too. Won’t shut up about them. A regular fixation with her, it is. Kids are starting to get freaked out about her, too.

So, right. The ghosts. I suppose if they’re there, then we ought to get rid of them, but for the life of me I couldn’t say why. They don’t exactly do anything. There’s no moaning or shaking of chains and such. They don’t even speak.

I think they slammed a door once. But maybe that was the wind?

They do seem quite taken up with staring. According to her, they’re always goggling about at us like paparazzi at the BAFTAs. Right, so maybe they’re a little ill-bred, but I’m not certain that’s a crime, exactly. And it’s not like the rest of us can see them doing it anyway.

Maybe you could get them to wear a hat or something? The governess seems quite upset about that bit.

Look, all I’m saying is, bring your gizmos and whatnot, bring your ghost traps, but maybe bring an extra straightjacket, too. Some of us here might need it. Because there might be ghosts here. There might not. We might have to get rid of them but I’m not even sure why. Who the hell knows, really.

I’m putting in my two weeks’ notice tomorrow. Let me know how it all turns out. I’m done.

Image Source / Public Domain