pumpktoberfest #43 -
treat yoself.

spice up yer nuts.

pumpktoberfest 2010!

#195 - links &
drinks 2011.


pumpktoberfest #30 - robot overlords.

film: deadly friend
beer: sixpoint autumnation

the 80's were a pretty sweet time for horror director wes craven. during the decade, craven launched the nightmare on elm street franchise & directed a total of nine films including such classics as swamp thing (1982) & the serpent and the rainbow (1988). amongst that success, he directed a few questionable films, including halloween of '86's deadly friend, which was based on the novel friend by diana henstell. the plot's pretty simple. paul, a college student studying neurology, moves to a new town with his mom & his remote-controlled robot named "BB" (voiced by comedian charles fleischer). eventually, things take a turn for the EVIL. coincidentally, what other robot-centric film came out five months before deadly friend? that's right...the KING of all robot films, short circuit.

soon after moving to town, paul becomes friends with a dude named tom & a girl named samantha (kristy swanson, best known as buffy the vampire slayer). they (and BB) hang out like ALL the time. BFFs! samantha & her abusive father live next door to paul & across the street from them is elvira, a crotchedy old woman who's played by anne ramsey (mama fratelli from the goonies). elvira keeps the gate around her house locked with a combination lock & if anybody approaches the house, she usually whips out the shotgun & chases them away. she's particularly angry towards BB, obviously because she is confused by technology. one day, when the three kids & BB are shooting hoops, BB tosses the basketball into her yard. elvira confiscates it & shoos them away.

then things take a turn for the crazy on halloween night when paul, tom, samantha & BB are out trick-or-treating. they head over to elvira's house to "prank" her by ringing her doorbell. first, they use BB's super-intelligent 1980's robot brain to figure out the combo on the gate lock. once the gate's open, paul shuts BB down because "he's been acting weird" & samantha tiptoes up onto the porch to ring the bell but suddenly the alarm goes off! paul & tom grab samantha & run off into the bushes. elvira comes out the front door with her shotgun & sees the gate open & BB starting to roll up the path toward her. but wait! paul had turned BB off! that's unpossible! anyway, elvira freaks out & opens fire on BB, completely destroying him.

then, on a night where samantha returns home after having dinner at paul's house, her father pushes her down the stairs. she goes into a coma & eventually they decide to pull the plug. minutes after she dies, paul & tom create a diversion, steal her from the hospital & implant a chip from BB into her brain. as you might expect, when you implant a chip from a recently-destroyed robot into the brain of a recently-deceased female teen, the results are ultimately disastrous. what isn't disastrous is samantha as a robot, with her excessive blue eye shadow, stiff walk & vulcanlike thing she does with her fingers. when she eventually starts going all evil, it's hilariously awesome.

with visions of robots dancing in my head, i decided to pair the film with a brand new pumpkin beer with a robot-themed name. though i've tried somewhere in the neighborhood of three dozen pumpkin beers in my day, it took me a while to realize that there were two ends to the pumpkin beer spectrum--those that have the spiced taste of pumpkin pie & those that more prominently feature the taste of actual pumpkin. the sixpoint autumnation, the newest beer from brooklyn's sixpoint brewery & a slight update from last year's pumpkin brewster, is on the squashy end of the spectrum. after introducing their beer in cans this past memorial day, this is sixpoint's first seasonal canned beer, one that prominently features pumpkin & wet citra hops, which are only available for brewing during this time of year. you can check out a video of the fancy process that went into making the autumnation here.

as far as pumpkin beers go, the autumnation is the one i've drank most over the past month. in general, i've been drinking a bunch of sixpoint since the cans first came out but after trying a few cans of the autumnation, i couldn't decide whether i liked it or not, so i kept sampling them until i'd made my mind up. it's a cloudy orange beer that, in addition to the pumpkin & hops, is made with ginger & white pepper, which give the aftertaste a distinct peppery bite. there's no nutmeg or allspice or any of that stuff that you'll find in the majority of pumpkin beers & that's OK. with all the different ingredients, it's got a uniquely complex flavor that i've grown to love. if you can find it in your neck of the woods, pick up a can of it TODAY & start off your pumpktoberfest right.

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