Thursday, September 2, 2010

"Iss that ssso...?"

Hey there, pubgoers.

Thanks to our good friend and loyal S&P patron Max, who happens to be a drunken, severed head, I just found out an interesting thing about today, Sep. 2nd.

Turns out today is the very first International Talk Like James Mason Day!

I KNOW, right?! You thought you were enjoying a normal early September day like any other.

Apparently it was begun by a fella named Callum Stewart over at the Classic Horror Film Board who figured there's just not enough of James Mason's incredible voice. You can read about Stewart's motivations in a neat little interview over at Max's site.

Now, I love everything I've seen him do from 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea, Journey to the Center of the Earth, The Boys From Brazil and The Verdict, to Lolita, North By Northwest, Salem's Lot and numerous other works.

But rather than spend the day saying lines from these films in my best James Mason voice, I prefer to recite lines from things he never did, but would've just KILLED if he had.

- The voice of your ATM, elevator or GPS.
- Darth Vader. NO, Ben Kenobi -- hell any Star Wars character.
- Taxi Driver ("Are you... talking to me?")
- Just think of your doctor telling you anything a little unsettling ("You'll have to inssert this jusst sso... here!").

My favorite idea here is the Ghost Host from the Haunted Mansion. C'mon, can't you hear it? "Where hingesss creak in doorlessss chambersss... where strange and fright-en-ing soundsss echo (throat clear)... through the hallswhenevercandlelights... flickah, hm?"

I make myself laugh.

At any rate, today we need to talk like James Mason.

My all-time favorite anything he ever did, and I think the most appropriate Mason work for the Skull & Pumpkin and our Poe theme for this Hallowe'en, is the absolutely amazing UPA animated short from 1953, The Telltale Heart!

Eight marvelous minutes of Mason, menace and madness.

Try to get in a James Mason movie today, or at least answer the phone once as Humbert Humbert or Stryker from Salem's Lot.

Or call your doctor and say something is wrong with your voice...



  1. Hey there! Just wanted to thank you for spreading the word about INTERNATIONAL TALK LIKE JAMES MASON DAY!

    - Callum

  2. Awesome - BTW - North by Northwest is one of my favs! But I have to admit, after reading this I now have the routine in my head from Eddie Izzard when does god in the voice of James Mason :D And that makes me smile.

    Thanks for sharing.


  3. More marvelous Mason and Poe here:

  4. Hey Callum, you are quite welcome -- thanks for the holiday!
    Frog Queen, I have that routine memorized, Eddie's the best!
    And YOU, Mr. or Mrs. or Ms. Anonymous, THANK YOU for that link! Wonderful audio!Heck, I may have to pilfer it for this very blog during our Poe-tastic Hallowe'en Season.

  5. thanks for the Tell-Tale Heart video-- that was amazing!

  6. Great new holiday!

    Unfortunately, I kept sounding too much like Ronald Colman impersonating Odie Colognie's impression of Tooter Turtle.

    Gotta practice more . . .

  7. Hahahahaha! Ronald Coleman, Tooter Turtle... what a reference! Fester, I just want to hear you let out one good "Benita, my darling!"