Mike Reiss and His Secrets of The Simpsons: Review



I know, I know, this is a horror based blog but I just need to share my feelings on last nights show for the writer in me.

Mike Reiss is one of the 23 writers on The Simpsons and the creator of Queer Duck. He politely declined to acknowledge his co-creator credit for Teen Angel – We all love it really..

As with Silent Hill Live, I was sceptical about travelling in to an area with a less than average reputation, but upon arrival, I was taken back by the venue and this was a huge surprise. Not because of the stories I have heard, but because I used to live around the corner from this beautiful, church-run hall and never bothered to check it out. If you had told me that Crytal Palace had an International film festival last week I would have literally rolled on the floor with laughter. Some say that ignorance is bliss, but on this occasion, it is most certainly not.

The festival is run by the nicest people that you will ever meet and that is no exaggeration. There couldn’t be a friendlier bunch of people out there and the atmosphere inside was most definitely a contrast to outside the doors of the Stanley Hall. The venue, by the way, was the first building to have electricity in Croydon. 

I got there 45 minutes before showtime and took my seat in the front row; I was excited. Mike Reiss was already there and this is the part that I love the most; he hung around in the crowd talking to everyone and even let someone interview him for their website. Mike, ever smiling, is the personification of happiness. He was genuinely happy to be there and I wondered if a man who is responsible for some of the funniest gags on television would be anything the same in person. 

Mike answered that right away when he took to the stage. He started by telling us that a comedy writer and comedian are very different, and within seconds, contradicted himself. Firing away with a joke about how it was like phone sex and real sex; only to tell us that one was a long, drawn out, boring experience, that ended with a soulless feeling and the other cost him £20 for 4 minutes. The crowd were fully engaged and the rest of the show didn’t disappoint. 

Mike regaled us with past stories about his experiences, a journey in to the ideas behind his own show – Queer Duck, a scene from The Critic – the show that didn’t do to well, and a lengthy Q&A session.

Considering that I did not know what to expect, this show was phenomenal. A genuine guy with lots of stories and a whole lot of time for the people. Mike stayed afterwards and spoke to every single attendee who had formed in a queue. He signed things and took photos and answered any questions that anyone had. I couldn’t recommend one of his talks enough.

The session was a huge inspiration to me and Mike Reiss is one of the biggest reasons that I will continue to pursue a career as a screenwriter. A big thanks is due to him and the people that put together the festival which is still on for another week. 


“I Own the Horror Genre..”. NO!


We all know that sex and horror go together better than anything. Where there are scares, gratuitous nudity is not far behind and that is just kind of accepted in the world of horror. Fear plays on our psychological feelings and the same can be said about sex. I do not have a problem with the use of nudity in horror, so long as it is used in context and not just there for the sake of it. That being said, I do not understand the constant slew of films in the genre, intent on making sex an integral part of our viewing.

Take Jennifer’s Body, I have not seen it but from what I understand, sex is a key factor in the film. It used as a tool to move the narrative along; it is much the same in species. There is a point to why it is there. When it is not used in the correct context and has no bearing on the film, you end up with an end product that consistently receives bad reviews. What am I getting at? Let me explain..

Bipasha Basu, a 36 year old former model from Delhi.

Bipasha is known for her move in to horror, or should I say erotic horror. Often, she stars as a seductress or variant and the films generally suck, perhaps with the exception of Raaz, which to be honest, is more of a thriller. She is the personification of gratuitous sex in horror.

There is nothing notable or original about the films that she stars in but this genuinely wouldn’t be a problem for me. I mean worse has happened; Megan Fox starring as April in the Ninja Turtles Reboot is probably the most prominent to date for myself. What I do have a problem with is her latest claim and it actually offends me.

Bipasha recently let out that she owned the horror genre in an interview.

I mean, come on, starring in a string of awful horror films does not make you “own the horror genre”. In actual fact, it is people like Bipasha who are dragging the name of horror through the dirt. They participate in churning out feature after feature of half-assed quality. Ranking in the top ten of India’s most desirable women does not make you a master of horror. I’m sorry but NO!

This wild claim sent my mind in to meltdown, i’ll be honest. This fraud is not even in the same league as some of the other key players in horror. Maybe I own the horror genre because I planned a load of scripts that never took flight?

What would William Friedkin or Bob Clark say about this? What about Stephen ‘F***ing’ King! No, the list is endless. If I was to go in a reverse order of who owns the horror genre, Bipasha might only get beaten to the top spot by Disney. Wait, have you seen The Return To Oz? It’s pretty creepy. You lose Bipasha!

The reason for this interview was to promote a new Indian tv show that focuses on the genre, you guessed it, it stars Miss Basu.

My god, it better be the best damn horror television ever conceived; If that is the case then I apologise for all the above.