View Full Version : The Call of Cthulhu Discussion

Exhaust Port
07-02-2003, 11:02 AM
For all things Lovecraft!

The only collection that I own and have read is the "The Dunwich Horror and Others" which contains most of his popular works. It's a great book and I spent many nights reading a story before going to sleep. I know this book is the last in a 3 book collection so I'm hoping to get first 2 in the near future.

My only other Lovecraft collectible is a partial set of Pint Glasses, each with a Lovecraft theme beer name on them. Arkham Pale Ale and Dunwich Dark are the that I can remember off the top of my head. Anyway, my old roommate has the complete set of all 3. Our original order for 2 sets was partially filled awaiting future deliveries. Never happened, as the company discontinued making them. Darn.

Oh, the 3rd Lovecraft beer was an Innsmouth Stout.

What other Lovecraft items and books do other have and recommend?

07-02-2003, 11:19 AM
Items- none, really, other than a few miniatures... I should have bought a "Cthulu for president" sticker when I saw it, but that's the extent... them glasses sound really cool, man!!
Books?? Well, I don't know how they're "collected" nowadays... when I first got into HPL, there was one book in the library, and I was the only person who ever took it out, couldn't buy any of his stuff anywhere....
The best collections I can recommend... one called "blood curdling tales of horror and the macabre", it has all the essentials... my fave stories are "shadow out of time", "whisperer in darkness", "at the mountains of madness", "call of cthulu"(natch;)), "dream quest of unknown Kadath"....
"the doom that came to Sarnath" is a good collection of older stuff, more like neo-mythology, lots of greek sounding legends and stuff....
I gotta think a bit more about it, but thanks for starting this thread up man, I'll be back!!!
PS wonder how many from the "metallica" thread will come here, LOTS of HPL references in their body of work...

Exhaust Port
07-02-2003, 11:38 AM
The first time I had heard of any reference to Lovecraft was the Metallica song The Call of Ktulu. I don't know why it was spelled that way.

Dr Zoltar
07-02-2003, 03:17 PM
Exhaust Port,

Now you're talkin'! I could go on and on about how much I enjoy Lovecraft's works. But I'd just end up boring most people.

Anyway, here's a list of what I have:

All of Lovecraft's stories in cheapo paperback (but none of his "Letters From" series)
Some of the "Cycle of..." Books that Chaosium puts out
Other random books Chaosium puts out like Necronomicon (historical reference book), The King in Yellow (Chambers), etc.
Encyclopia Cthulhiana -- a must for any Lovecraft fan
A hardback biography of Lovecraft
All the cards from the Mythos CCG
The 20th Anniversary leather bound Call of Cthulhu role playing book
CD's from The Darkest of the Hillside Thickets (I know Warren the guitar player)
Old 1980's Call of Cthulhu metal miniatures (I picked up 17 of them for a song)
Video of cheesy Lovecraft films including Lurker in the Lobby, The Innsmouth Look, and The Dunwich Horror (staring Dean Stockwell!)
Cthulhu Plushes
Star Spawn Plush
Dagon DVD (A must see)
A fan made Cthulhu Statuette
The Miskatonic University college pack -- class listing, packing pass, notepad and such
The Miskatonic University grad certificates -- Bachelors and Masters in Medieval Metaphysics

I'm impatiently waiting for:

The Arkham Horror boardgame
Dark Corners of the Earth PC game

I'm sure I have other assorted Lovecraft random crap lying around elsewhere. I love his works, but don't take it to the extreme that some people do. I have no desire to make sacrifices on his grave at midnight. I don't dress in all black and only go out at night. Lovecraft just has a way of writing intriguing stores and using one's imagination to frighten themselves. He's not even very gory in his stories.

Anyway, for a good chuckle, I've attached a photo of my cat Dali looking evil next to my 2 Cthulhu plushes atop my computer desk.

Exhaust Port
07-02-2003, 03:48 PM
I've come across The Darkest of the Hillside Thickets a couple times online and have been intrigued by the album. I just always seem to never pick it up.

I haven't seen or even heard of the Encyclopedia Cthulhiana. Sounds interesting though, I'll have to look into it.

That picture of your cat is hysterical!

Dr Zoltar
07-02-2003, 04:54 PM
Thanks! My computer stand is a corner unit and has about 4 stacked shelves on it. She figured how to get all the way to the top, but couldn't figure out how to get down. I snapped that photo after refusing to carry her down since she got up there on her own. Eventually she knocked down the Cthulhus so I rescued her.

Her nickname is Dali, but it's short for Amidala. If I get another cat, I'm going to name him Lama...

07-03-2003, 01:00 PM
The "thickets" are awesome... first song I heeard was "shoggoths away" and I almost couldn't stand how right-on they cover the material, if you're an HPL fan you MUST check them out, they rock!!

ExP- the weird spelling was a Lovecraft thing- there's an essay I read that said he pronounced the name more like "pahulu" or some weird thing, and in some stories there are alternate spellings of some of the elder beings names, like ossadogua for tsathoggua and stuff like that, he just liked to give it a sort of "ancient fragments" feel, like the whole planet was in on it, but over millions of years(and a few intergalactic conflicts) the groups became isolated, and the names changed.... "The call of cthulu" is sort of about the whole "farflung cultures having weird similarities thanks to some unearthly common past" theme (popular theme, actually;))
So that is why the name was spelled funny, and prolly something to do with Chaosium's copyright... after Metallica saw what happened to TSR (the D+D company) for using the MYTHOS in their game, they figgered "close enough is good enough"
Or I'm just full of SITH:)

Exhaust Port
07-03-2003, 01:14 PM
Interesting. It would be great to hear him read his own stories to see how the names were intented to be said.

James Boba Fettfield
07-04-2003, 10:44 AM
It's weird saying this, but the only reason I own the Lovecraft book I do is because I wanted to read the stories that inspired Metallica's Ktulu and Thing That Should Not Be songs. It didn't really help to understand Ktulu, being instrumental, but The Thing That Should Not Be makes a lot more sense after reading the Shadow Over Innsmouth. Cliff Burton was one smart man bringing those kind of "different" literary influences into their music.

Anyway, back to the man this subject is about. I've read some of the other stories in that collection I bought, and I'm glad Metallica showed me the way to Lovecraft's works.

07-04-2003, 12:24 PM
I KNEW they'd be here sooner or later;)!!
Another band with a HPL reference, a BIG one, to their credit is Iron Maiden, on the cover of "live after death", Eddie's tombstone has the famous couplet inscribed on it, kinda fun.....
Creeping Death (metallica) is also a reference I THINK... the whole "crawling chaos" thing...
"The thing that should not be" is more a reference to the Cthulu mythos stories penned by Clark Ashton Smith, another cool writer if you like this sort of thing, check him out too if ya like...
ExP- yeah, it would be REALLY cool to actually hear the man speak...I'm not sure if there is any recorded bits of him, as he wasn't very popular while he was alive , at all, mebbe someone here knows if such things exist... I was having a conversation with a buddy about HPL last night, and he recalled to me the fact that, while many tried to put weird significance to HPL's writings, the man himself thought his stories were actually pretty funny and kinda "over the top", at least in the narrative sense... it's also kinda funny to add that he (HPL) was a complete teetotaller, with no vices save writing nutty fiction, his death at such a young age was from, of all things, complications arising from cataract removal surgery, what a rip!!!!

Dr Zoltar
07-04-2003, 04:33 PM
Ah, very nice. I only began to appreciate Iron Maiden when I was older. They are very refined. Almost rock opera.

Believe it or not, there was a band in the 60's called H. P. Lovecraft. They only had 2 albums but you can find them both on one CD at Amazon.com. Not really that good, but an interesting little piece.

As far as Lovecraft writing over the top stuff, yes, much of that was true. He used to suffer from nightmares and got a lot of inspiration from that. But what he'd like to do is "one up" the other authors he wrote to. They would build on stories the others wrote. At one time, one of his pen pals wrote a story killing off one of Lovecraft's characters. So in return, he did the same. It is really a shame his works didn't become well known until after his death.

Exhaust Port
07-05-2003, 01:01 AM
I wasn't aware of the Thing That Should Not Be Metallica song being a HPLC crossover. I'll have to listen to that again.

mabudon, Creeping Death is the story of Moses/Passover from the Bible. I always wanted to see a video of that movie done with footage from The Ten Commandments starting Heston. "So let it be written, so let it be done." :D

07-05-2003, 10:12 AM
RIGHT... sorry, that was just a lapse of recall, it's too frickin' hot hereabouts.......
Thanks for the mention of the 60's band, Doc, I had heard of that before but only the fact that such a thing had happened.....
There are more references in Heavy Metal... I'll try to compile some more...

07-07-2003, 10:31 AM
I have never read the stories. What is a Cthulu exactly? Just a monster?

07-07-2003, 10:55 AM
Sort of.... he's only really in one story, but is referred to a lot... He (or maybe "it" is better) is a big slobbery octopus type thing..... he is originally from some other planet, and was trapped beneath the Pacific ocean by some cryptic high power as a way of containing him/it forever... sometimes when the stars align right the city R'Lyeh, which is his prison, rises from the ocean, and terrible things happen to anyone who happens to be in the vicinity... there are many primitive cults which are just survivals of ancient pre-human things inspired by Cthulu and those extra-dimensoinal super powerful aliens with which he was affiliated.....
Oh, and he/it is prophesied to rise eventually and destroy the whole planet and stuff, which is actually what his "worshippers" want, for some reason....
That's it in a nutshell... even from the above, one should get the semi-ridiculous nature of the whole deal.. hope this helps!!!!
Oh, and finally, the best story with the actual thing in it is, in fact, "the Call of Cthulu", which is brilliant IMO

Exhaust Port
08-26-2003, 09:20 AM
Here's a little picture story called "Tales of the Plush Cthulhu." Pretty scary stuff. :D

Tales of the Plush Cthulhu (http://www.logicalcreativity.com/jon/plush/01.html)

08-26-2003, 10:40 AM
That was pretty funny, alright... I like the "at least it's not squamous" bit, nice and Lovecraftian...
The only thing missing was acute angles that functioned as if they were obtuse:)

Exhaust Port
10-26-2003, 08:37 PM
Lego Cthulhu? :D


10-27-2003, 10:36 AM
Nice... I'm a little confused by the "cape" concept, I always thought of Cthulu as some sort of big glob of goo that only had a form incidentally...... fun idea, though, if I see one of them squids I will have to try my own take.......

Also, I've been listening to "great Old Ones" by the thickets lately, it's a pretty halloweenie kind of album... I am kinda fixated on "Big Robot Dinosaur", what a classic theme

Dr Zoltar
10-31-2003, 04:03 PM
Nice link there ExhaustPort. I'll have to dig through my Legos and see if I can make one.

Mabudon, I think you're referring to a Shoggoth as a "big glob of goo". Cthulhu is roughly humanoid shaped, with rubbery skin, an octopoid head, and dragon wings. And really, really tall.

For those that like something a bit different, try checking out the plush Cthulhu dolls. My wife picked up 3 more for me for my birthday last week -- The 6" regular one, Superhero Cthulhu, and Fun in the Sun Cthulhu (my favorite of the bunch). I still need to pick up Christmas Cthulhu (with jingle bells on his front mouth tentacles). And rumour has it that a Men in Black Cthulhu is due out soon.

I envy you for having some of the early Thickets CD's. I was able to pick up "Let Sleeping Gods Lie" that has a collection of their greatest hits, so to speak. And "Spaceship Zero" by them is a must! If you don't have it, order it now. They were supposed to play at the Lovecraft film festival in Portland, OR this year, but Warren and Toren both were busy.

Exhaust Port
10-31-2003, 05:28 PM
Dr. Z, where by chance do you pick up your dolls?

Dr Zoltar
10-31-2003, 06:52 PM
There are a few places. I've actually gotten them from:

Local Wizard of the Coast stores
A local comic shop

Other places I've seen them at are Entertainment Earth and Warehouse23.com. Or even from the makers site: toyvault.com. Prices seem to be the same no matter where you visit. Though lately toyzz.com have been emailing out coupons to try and clear out their back inventory.

11-01-2003, 10:28 AM
No, Doc, shoggoths are furry goo, I know, but in the one "appearance" of Cthulu he doesn't really have a shape... I mean, octopus head and wings and he's huge and stuff, but I always imagined "him" as weird looking goo that sorta doesn't have any internal structure... Not necessarily the way everyone else seems to think he looks, sure, but I can dream:D!!

James Boba Fettfield
11-13-2003, 09:51 AM

Look at that.

Exhaust Port
11-13-2003, 10:16 AM
I can't get the link to work JBF.

James Boba Fettfield
11-13-2003, 11:44 AM
Hmmm, EP....It was working earlier. I'll see if I can dig up the pics in my temporary internet folder.

EDIT-I just clicked on it again and it loaded, but only a few pics were showing...maybe it's a bandwidth thing with their site. Well, in case it never works again, the site was a mod case for a PC someone made that was inspired by Lovecraft literature and it looked good.

Dr Zoltar
11-13-2003, 12:23 PM
No, Doc, shoggoths are furry goo
I always had the impression that they were just green goo with eyes and stuff in it (I may have gotten this impression from either the Call of Cthulhu RPG or the Mythos CCG). But according to the Encyclopedia Cthulhiana they are just a mass of protoplasm that can form whatever appendages they need. So I don't see why they couldn't grow fur if needed. After all, Mr. Shiney is an intelligent, humanoid looking Shoggoth.

James Boba Fettfield
11-13-2003, 12:27 PM
Ok, I decided to take pics of the website I had that was half loaded and I put uploaded the pics for those who might want to see them. The links are as follows:







The second, third, and sixth links are to actual pics of the case.

The other links are pics of the text off the website. It's not the best representation of the guy's website, but it gives you an idea of what it was before his site started having problems.

Dr Zoltar
11-13-2003, 12:28 PM
Lego Cthulhu? :D

Well I managed to find a discounted Lego set at KB to get the octopus head. The set even had two skeleton scuba divers I can use as corpses. I have some older Legos that I can dig through for the torso. Does anyone know what set contains the wings used to make this Lego Cthulhu?

Oh, and the Werewolf Lego set has a cool lego guy with a scared look on his face which would be perfect for this.

Exhaust Port
11-13-2003, 02:02 PM
JBF, the link is working now.

Man that is one crazy looking computer case. That builder has some great skills, it really captures the HPLC mood. :D

11-14-2003, 09:51 AM
RE- Shoggoths

Yeah, my take on the stuff is more backwoods hysteria-type stuff... shoggoths were modified to work underwater in the cold ("at the mountains of madness") and so in my mind they are black, icky goo that moves like it was shot in stop-motion, and are sorta furry and sorta slick....
That was part of the fun of HPL's work IMO, he never really gave accurate descriptions of anything... I mean, what does a byakhee look like, really... weren't they described as "neither ape nor insect nor horse" kinda like that... I have seen many images of said beast and still am not sure how close any of them came to the picture in HPL's mind when he closed his eyes....

Cthulu's appearance is also from my own head.... I've seen many different representations of him, and in all of them he's at least semi-upright... I imagine he can't move properly in this dimension, and since he wouldn't be bound by the rules of topology and stuff like that, I don't imagine him really "standing", if ya know what I mean......
Still having troubles with those pics, darn dial-up, I'll be back though...

Exhaust Port
08-11-2004, 09:42 PM
Screw Hello Kitty, how about some Hello Cthulhu?