We Are Not Afraid

H.P. Lovecraft’s Cthulhu mythos has become the dominant joke religion for Internet geeks the world over, eclipsing other willfully anachronistic belief systems such as the Church of the Subgenius and the Flying Spaghetti Monster. There is a staggering wealth of webcomics, blogs, fan fiction, and even plush dolls dedicated to Lovecraft’s gargantuan beast, or as he inelegantly put it, “the thing cannot be described.” (Imagine the offspring of the Cloverfield monster and a mammoth squid.) What is it about Cthulhu that has so inflamed the imaginations of coders, mild-mannered IT guys, steampunk aficionados, and snarky bloggers? It’s impossible to say, but the numerous references to the monster in punk and heavy metal songs, video games, genre television, online fiction and webcomics like the Hello Kitty parody Hello Cthulhu certainly play a role. It makes sense that the hyper-connected population of San Francisco would welcome their new underwater overlord with open arms, making the Ball of Cthulhu almost an inevitability. Bands (and avowed Lovecraft enthusiasts) Abney Park, Vernian Process, and steampunk act the Unextraordinary Gentlemen provide the soundtrack to the night’s revelry, promising a bacchanalian sendoff to the doomed souls in attendance. Will such pagan offerings of devotion to the Great Old One spare these puny mortals? Unlikely, but at least the puny humans will go out dancing.
Fri., Oct. 8, 8 p.m., 2010

 
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