Sunday, April 15, 2012

Bubba Ho Tep by Joe R Lansdale


Elvis is alive but not well.  In a East Texas Rest Home, he is forced to join forces with John F Kennedy to combat a mummy sucking the life from the institute’s residents.


This is a truly heartfelt piece.  Lansdale imagines two of his fallen heroes having escaped their fates, only to be forced to become heroes in a new time and beyond their prime.  Most people are probably more familiar with the film version of this story.  The novella was very faithfully adapted by Don Coscarelli and staring Bruce Campbell.  For those who have seen the film, he novel provides more of Elvis’ vulgar observations about the world around him. Every element in the story is used to maximum effect from the setting mirroring the decay Elvis feels, to the mummy haunting the rest home picking off the residents one by one.      Kennedy proves a terrific foil for Elvis creating my favorite Lansdale buddy team.  Sorry Hap and Leonard. 

In the End;

Bubba Ho-Tep is classic Lansdale.  His talent for imaging the most unique and creative situation is unparalleled.  Beyond the cleaver story and abundant humor he takes two icons and shows them as deeply flawed but inspiring figures.  This novella is currently available for 99 cents in its e-book format and cannot think of a better deal.  I paid 20 dollars for the hardcover and don’t feel ripped off in the least.  I find this story to be truly touching and inspiring.  

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