Godzilla, King Kong, Lindsay Lohan - Maine Needs a Monster Movie
Tokyo has Godzilla. New York has King Kong. London has Jack the Ripper. Paris has the Hunchback of Notre Dame.
Even Los Angeles has Lindsay Lohan.
All the important cities of the world have their own monsters. And their own monster movies.
But what does Maine have? Some low-budget Stephen King adaptations. A misplaced “Lake Placid” (as well as “Lake Placid 2,” “Lake Placid 3” and “The Plum Creek Development on Formerly Placid Moosehead Lake”).
Also, we have a governor who uses cuss words in public.
And you wonder why this state gets no respect from the International Association of Fans of Giant, Malevolent, Radioactive Reptiles? Think of the tourism dollars we’re losing, not to mention all that federal disaster-relief money we’d get after Maine-Zilla got through trashing Piscataquis County (oops, never mind, the Creature from the Bleak Economic Outlook got there first).
Now, however, this state finally has a chance to develop some monster momentum. According to the Maine Department of Conservation (motto: Do Not Feed The Bears – Or Mothra), a production crew from the Syfy TV channel will be in Maine next month.
While it’s true that the reason they’ll be here for six days is to tape an episode of the “Ghost Hunters” series at Fort Knox Historic Site in Prospect, they’ll no doubt be interested in hearing of any other unusual happenings in Maine that might be fodder for a good monster movie. Such as:
“Mega-Moose Versus Giant Lobster.”
After the success of such Syfy staples as “Mega Shark Versus Giant Octopus” (starring ‘80s has-been Debbie Gibson), “Mega Piranha” (starring ‘80s has-been Tiffany) and “Mega Python Versus Gatoroid” (starring Gibson, Tiffany and ‘60s has-been Mickey Dolenz, who – spoiler alert – gets eaten before he can sing), the groundwork has been laid for “Giant Pothole Versus Demon-Possessed Eighteen Wheeler.” I’m thinking ‘80s has-been Adam Ant and ‘80s has-been Quiet Riot can collaborate on the theme song, which will naturally be a remake of that quintessential Maine tune, “A Tombstone Every Mile.”
Who wouldn’t watch that?
Well, Lindsay Lohan, maybe.
Nevertheless, this is our big opportunity. Let’s be prepared to charm these Syfy folks with Maine products they’ll never forget. Right at the top of the gift basket should be a big bottle of distilled maple syrup.
Goes great with whiskey-infused waffles. Add in beer sausage and vodka-infused fruit salad, and you’ve got a Sunday brunch you probably won’t remember the next day.
Seriously, these two guys in Oakland have a company called Tree Spirits of Maine that makes something called Knotted Maple, which is distilled from maple wine (which they also make) into a sort of brandy (although technically brandy is made from fermented fruit) and which they claim is a new product nobody has ever thought of before. I haven’t yet tasted this beverage, but I’m more than willing to defer to the Syfy producers, and if they don’t die or turn into hideous beasts intent on disemboweling Debbie Gibson (spoiler alert: They’d be too late, because she already got disemboweled in “Mega Python”), then I’ll try a sip. (And just for the record, Tiffany got eaten, too.)
If the monster-movie thing doesn’t work out, I have a fall-back strategy. Maine should have its own true-crime TV show. It could be called “Maineiacs,” a name that might become available at any moment, as the minor-league hockey team that’s using it right now has made an annual event out of failing to keep secret its inquiries about leaving Lewiston for various Canadian locations.
But who needs hockey when we’ve got actual police-blotter items like this (please note, even without actual police-blotter items, there’s still a real question about who needs hockey):
In Portland last weekend, police were summoned to PT’s Showplace on Riverside Street to break up a fight in the parking lot between two strippers.
This might have been just another case of silicon-induced aggression if one exotic dancer hadn’t pulled off her shoe and used the stiletto heel to beat on her competition. The accused footwear felon was charged with assault. Her victim was treated and released from a local hospital.
A group called Maine Citizens For Sensible Shoes immediately called for legislation requiring criminal-background checks before anyone could purchase potentially lethal heels. The National Sexy Footwear Association immediately announced its opposition to such a law (“If stiletto heels are outlawed, only strippers and stripper wannabes will have stiletto heels”), pointing to an incident in Hiram the night before the Portland attack in which grievous injury was inflicted on one party, even though nobody pulled a sharp-looking shoe.
In that case, a twenty-two-year-old woman – angered over the possibility her boyfriend was two-timing her with her seventeen-year-old half-sister – bit his nose off.
I know, this sounds like something out of an old Woody Allen movie from back when he was still funny and wasn’t two-timing his girlfriend with one of her adopted daughters.
Meanwhile, in Skowhegan, a convicted bank robber came up with a novel way to pay his court-ordered restitution. He went to a different branch of the credit union he’d held up and tried to apply for a loan.
OK, that’s the worst money-raising idea since then-Gov. John Baldacci sold off the state’s wholesale liquor business, claiming it was the only way to deal with surplus inventory of maple-syrup brandy. But at least Baldacci didn’t get arrested for his dumb move. In the robber’s case, one of the conditions of his probation was that he stay away from any branch of that credit union. So, not only did he end up back in custody, he also didn’t get the loan. This being his third probation or bail violation, the district attorney was prompted to conclude, “I don’t think he gets it.”
Which is the sort of understatement we should be looking for when we pitch the Syfy people on a film called “Mega Budget Deficit Versus Big-Mouthed Governor.”
Al Diamon spent the 1980s listening to Hank Williams, both senior and junior. He’s still doing so. If you’ve got a better playlist, e-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org.