Ghost in a Box: The Haunting History of Television Broadcast Intrusions

By Michael Grasso

Almost as soon as the television entered the American home, forever changing the course of the American family, it became a novel, uncanny presence. With the introduction of telegraphy in the mid-19th century, a new virtual world—an uncanny “otherspace” of instantaneous communication over long distances, utterly new to the human experience—was unleashed…

Slasher Film Posters, 1980 – 1988

Although the slasher film developed out of Italian giallo films, particularly the work of Mario Bava, the genre began with Alfred Hitchcock’s Psycho (1960), which was extremely controversial at the time for its graphic violence, sexuality, and the final act’s depiction of a cross-dressing Norman Bates…

Il Giallo dei Ragazzi, 1970 – 1984

Italy’s shift from an agricultural to an industrial economy in the period following the Second World War brought with it transformative effects for the entire nation: there was a wave of migration from the poorer south of the country to the rapidly industrializing north, where much of the manufacturing base was located—particularly Turin, home to the vast Fiat factories—which brought with it an enduring exchange of traditions and habits…

Giallo: The Dirty Underwear of Italian Auteur Cinema

By Andrea Veltroni

I’ve always hated realism. In his Histoire du Cinema, Godard includes an almost touching dedication to Italian neorealism, stating that Italy is the only country in Europe to possess a “cinema of resistance.” Personally, I’ve never understood what people actually mean when they talk about a “cinema of resistance,” but in Italy it’s a legacy whose weight we have been carrying upon our backs for decades now…

Children of the Beast: The 1980s ‘Satanic Panic’

Of course it had to be the 1980s. We humans are prone to our periodic outbreaks of mass insanity—and there were no lack of those over the 20th century—but perhaps only the 1980s could have brought together the most garish fringes of popular culture and a repressed but growing fear of the horrors lurking beneath the increasingly preppy surface of Western society…

Beware the Beat: ‘Rock: It’s Your Decision’, 1982

When John Lennon told British journalist Maureen Cleave in March of 1966 that the Beatles were “more popular than Jesus now,” and that “Christianity… will vanish and shrink,” there was no controversy apart from a handful of letters sent in to the paper that ran the story, the London Evening Standard