I shed a serious but thankfully mild case of the Coronavirus in early April and as my physical energy returned, so too did my creative energy. But where to channel it?
I decided to re-create an homage to one of my favorite book-and-record stories from my youth.
As we all practice physical distancing – in my case it was nearly 28 days of total isolation – we seemed to embrace or re-embrace ‘comfortable’ forms of media and mediums. Maybe it’s a simple psychological reaction to our new uncertain realities. One of my comfortable mediums are the old Power Records adventures from the 1970s. My brother and I spent hours listening and listening again to stories of Spider-Man, Captain America and the Falcon, Werewolves, Dracula and Frankenstein’s monster, reading along with the comic panels while the record scratched and popped with the… erm…finest Power Records voice talent money could buy.
One of my favorite stories was Spider-Man and the Invasion of the Dragon Men. It had Spider-Man wisecracks, dragon men from space and their leader, Draco, who somehow picked up a distinct New York accent during his travels across the cosmos (Peter Pan/Power Records was based out of New Jersey). I knew I could have fun with it.
It allowed me to dip my hands again in Adobe Audition and Premiere where I could set up slates and titles and layer my audio in with sound effects I downloaded from the BBC Sound Effects archive (it’s seriously incredible). My plan was to do all the voices, but I ended up recruiting my talented cousin Abby on the female characters. My best friend Jon provided some musical cues and after about a week of editing, it was done!
Tune In Next Time
When I posted the finished video to YouTube and linked it to my social accounts, a very lovely thing happened. A few friends expressed interest in wanting to contribute if I planned to do more stories. After some coordination, six of us – myself, Jon, Abby and three other friends – did a virtual table read over Zoom to kick off the start of two more book-and-record adventures! It was more fun than I hoped it would be and I’m now even more excited to continue this little project and follow where it leads.
Need Even More Power?
Medium ran a story about the history of Power Records, with a bit of a hip-hop bent. They were apparently a fertile ground for sampling. Who knew?
There’s also an older blog that seems like an exhaustive repository of everything Power Records if you are looking for a rabbit hole to explore.
Of course, many of the old Power Records stories are available to watch/listen on YouTube, uploaded by fans.
Before Mark Ruffalo, Edward Norton, Eric Bana and a mixed bag of CGI, Bill Bixby and Lou Ferrigno – Lou and the Bix – WERE the Hulk. If you grew up in the 70s and 80s, you may still have fond memories of this early Marvel live action foray, with it’s classic opening warning, “Mr. McGee, don’t make me angry. You wouldn’t like me when I’m angry.”
On this incredible episode of the So Bad It’s… podcast, we are joined by Bernie Gonzalez, host of the Fan2Fan Podcast, to discuss the television version of the Incredible Hulk. Specifically, we delve into a pair of episodes that encapsulate all that was good – and hysterically bad – about this hit (it lasted 5 seasons) series.
‘The Final Round’ captures the budding romance between David Banner (Benson) and Rocky (played by favorite So Bad It’s… thespian, Mr. Martin Kove), as a loveable lug boxer who comes to Banner’s aid while jogging through the dangerous streets of Wilmington, Delaware. Emotions and passions run high as Rocky gets David a job at his local gym where heroin and haymakers are in equal supply.
Where ya headed? Greenpoint?
In ‘Times Square Terror’ Banner makes the totally logical move to Manhattan to work in an arcade slinging quarters as one does when trying to cure oneself of a horrible anger-induced metamorphosis into a giant green monster. Before change machines could render his job obsolete, Banner eavesdrops on some mob-related shenanigans orchestrated by a mob boss named…Jason. This leads to a traffic-caused hulkout in a taxi and Lou Ferrigno running through Times Square/a back lot with cute green booties on. Classic Ferrigs!