Thursday, May 26, 2011

Happy Birthday Peter Cushing: VOICE OF THE UNDEAD Countdown Minus 60

Holy Mackerel! We are now just sixty days from the July 26 hardback release of Voice of the Undead, the second book in the Alex Van Helsing series. So to that end I am going to be counting down sixty cool vampire things, one cool vampire item per day until D-Day.

Today is very special, though. It's the birthday of Peter Cushing, who played the best Van Helsing ever, in a series of films for Hammer Studios in the 50s, 60s and 70s. Oh, sure, Abraham Van Helsing in Stoker's Dracula was an elderly (if vigorous) oddball with a strange German accent. But in my mind, it's Peter Cushing who really captures the character who looms in the background of my own imagination. Peter Cushing's Van Helsing was driven, serious, athletic and had a commando-like ability to instantly spring into action, no matter the personal danger.

Here's a favorite moment that gives you some idea of what I mean-- Van Helsing taking the matter of purifying a fresh vampire bite in his own hands by hanging onto a heavy chain and applying a hot iron to his own neck. You do not mess with Peter Cushing.

Tune in tomorrow for VOICE OF THE UNDEAD Countdown Minus 59!

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