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Bells & Wassails
The Haunted Manchin
The Missed of Time
Gift Rapt
Red Meet
Crystal Bawls
The Gift of Grab
Monster Rally 2020
A Hitch in Time
WHAT NOT 2017-2018
WHAT NOT 2014-2016
WHAT NOT 2012-2013
WHAT NOT 2009-2011
WHAT NOT 2008
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WHAT NOT 2005 2
WHAT NOT 2005
EDITORIAL

Bells & Wassails

Caricatures of celebrity memoirists in a Christmas bell-ringing grouo, including Gloria Vanderbilt, Dave Grohl, Elvira, Will Smith, Katie Couric, Mel Brooks and Danny Trejo.E. Basil St. Blaise is most definitely someone who would rather give than receive. Bad reviews that is. Thus we've asked him to weigh in on some appropriate gifts for this endless Holiday Season –– ones that can be enjoyed in the comfort (and germ-free safety) of your own home during the chilly nights ahead. St. Blaise stays toasty in his Mobile HQ (currently parked in Noel, MO) by firing up the butane heater, wrapping his spindly Affenpinscher, Josef around his bestockinged feet and sipping on a Krampus Kocktail, his version of a Hot Toddy. "Mine is quite similar to the classic recipe except I add a dash of turpentine," claims the Critical Stinker. "Really clears out the sinuses."

"My favorite sort of book for this time of the year is the Memoir which allows the reader to luxuriate in the warm bath of the subject's ego. The list below is largely autobiographical and features more acts of self-love than a teenage boy bingeing pornhub videos. Of course there's oversharing, yet always with the altruistic motive of providing the self-doubting reader with a relatable role model. So Kal Penn comes out of the closet and Elvira comes out of the…coffin? Katie Couric humblebrags about her boy toy and Will Smith admits he's part-Alien…I think. There's plenty of BMI, but way more TMI."

Memoirs

All About Me! by Mel Brooks –– Babbling Brooks.
Will by Will Smith –– Where there’s a Will there’s a wha?
Going There by Katie Couric –– Politically Couric.
You Can’t Be Serious by Kal Penn –– Penn and ick.
Pure Ivory by James Ivory –– White out.
My Life in Full by Indra Nooyi –– ANooying.
Baggage: Tales from a Fully Packed Life by Alan Cumming –– Cumming up short.
The Lyrics: 1956 to the Present by Paul McCartney –– Beatle juiced.
The Boys by Ron Howard & Clint Howard –– Howards’ end.
Bourdain: The Definitive Oral Biography by Laurie Woolever –– Large mouth bash.
Yours Cruelly, Elvira by Cassandra Peterson –– Muffy the vampire layer.
Unrequited Infatuations: A Memoir by Stevie Van Zandt –– Surprise meh.
The Storyteller by Dave Grohl –– Foo D.
Taste by Stanley Tucci –– Great gorge.
Vanderbilt: The Rise and Fall of an American Dynasty by Anderson Cooper –– Gloria duh.
Forever Young by Hayley Mills –– Run of the Mills.
Trejo: My Life of Crime, Redemption, and Hollywood by Danny Trejo –– Trejo of tears.

According the St. Blaise, "We're all in a nostalgic mood theses days, remembering simpler times when the sharing of a family feast didn't include the threat that y0u might get ventilated by pistol-packing cousin Earl over a political squabble or end up on a ventilator because the twins refused to get vaxxed. So slap on the headphones, crank up the CD player (it's in the back of the closet between the VCR and the fax machine) and tune in the white noise of yesteryear."

Music Boxed Sets

Let It Be Special Edition / The Beatles –– The wrong and winding load.
Love For Sale / Lady Gaga & Tony Bennet –– Jest duet.
Cahoots / The Band –– Out Cahoots.
Destroyer 45th Anniversary Super Deluxe / KISS –– My ass.
The Who Sell Out Super Deluxe / The Who –– Who-boy!
200 Motels / Frank Zappa –– Rooms toilet.
Feel Flows: The Sunflower & Surf's Up Sessions 1969-1971 / The Beach Boys –– Wilson f-lips.
Teaser & the Firecat / Cat Stevens –– Cat, he slack.
Tha Carter Singles Collection / Lil Wayne –– Wayne, Wayne, go away.
All Things Must Pass Super Deluxe / George Harrison –– As he proved 20 years ago.
The Black Album Remastered / Metallica –– Piddle to the middle.
Tattoo You 40th Anniversary Remastered / The Rolling Stones –– Ink splotch.
Nevermind 30th Anniversary / Nirvana –– A bundle of Nirvanas.

"And of course you'll need a little something for the old peepers as you settle in on a snowy winter's eve. These idiot boxed sets with dozens of hours of the 'classics' will get your lids flickering in no time." With that, St.Blaise lies back on his love seat and hits play on The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring. "Ah, yes, I remember this from 2001, I believe I wrote of it, 'One Ringsy dingy.' Well, wake me in the New Year. 2023."

Film & TV Boxed Sets

Middle-Earth 31-Disc Ultimate Collector’s Edition (Warner Bros.) –– Frodoscoping.
Zack Snyder’s Justice League Trilogy 4K Ultra HD (Warner Bros.) –– Sick Zack patterns.
The World of Wong Kar Wai (Criterion) –– Wong Kar why?
Spider-man Trilogy (Sony) –– Candor and web.
Dexter: The Complete Series (Paramount) –– Break neck pace.
Star Trek: The Original Series (Paramount) –– Spock marks.
Superman: The Complete Animated Series (Warner Brothers) –– Fly overstates.
CSI NY: The Complete Series (Paramount) –– Dead on arrival.
Sex and the City: The Complete Series (HBO) –– Pushy galore.
Beverly Hills 90210: The Ultimate Collection (Paramount) –– Drags to riches.

Listen to E. Basil St. Blaise on his Critic's Corner Podcast.

12/21/21