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Podcast Episode 156: Revisiting ‘Christmas Smackdown’

Deck the halls with NSFW, politically incorrect, and deeply disturbed holiday cheer

Photo by Beth Accomando

Mark Nutter and Cythia Carle (lower center) are the creators of "Christmas Smackdown" that offers holiday cheer of a perverse nature. You have been warned.

Episode 156: Revisiting 'Christmas Smackdown'

Cinema Junkie is taking a holiday break and will be re-posting popular podcasts in the interim. This week I pull up an archive show appropriate for the Christmas season but with some perverse holiday cheer and that means revisiting "Christmas Smackdown" with Mark Nutter and Cynthia Carle. It is "all of your most cherished holiday sentiments pinned down to the mat in an Argentine death choke." You have been warned!

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Transcript

Cinema Junkie is taking a holiday break and will be re-posting popular podcasts in the interim. This week I pull up an archive show appropriate for the Christmas season but with some perverse holiday cheer and that means revisiting "Christmas Smackdown" with Mark Nutter and Cynthia Carle.

Warning: What follows pushes the boundaries of good taste to the breaking point ... and beyond.

I am straying off the cinema path for this podcast because my two guests are so deliciously depraved that I could not resist ending the year with their annual "Christmas Smackdown" show.

I was introduced to the work of Mark Nutter and Cynthia Carle when I covered "Re-Animator the Musical" for NPR back in 2011.

Nutter worked with Stuart Gordon to create a musical stage version of Gordon’s 1985 splatter fest movie "Re-Animator" (there, that’s the slim film connection for this episode) and Carle was in the cast. I fell in love with the musical and with their work. Check out Cinema Junkie podcast 41 for my love letter to "Re-Animator the Musical."

Then I heard that they do something called "Christmas Smackdown" that was "all of your most cherished holiday sentiments pinned down to the mat in an Argentine death choke." Needless to say, I had to see it. But this was the first year I could actually make it up to Los Angeles to see the show.

It was all that I could have hoped for and more. It went beyond irreverent and into the realm of bad taste ... but bad taste of the most delectable kind. Here's a sample, a song called "Angels."

Cynthia Carle: Angels

In the podcast, you can also hear cheery Christmas songs about severed heads, cannibalism, suicide and a drunk reindeer with a thing for Santa.

And here is the video we reference in the podcast of Nutter's song "The Baby Shredder," which is most definitely sick and twisted. You have been warned again!

Mark Nutter: The Baby Shredder Song

The latest edition of "Christmas Smackdown" is called "Get Lit - Hanukkah Special" and will be performed through Dec. 23 at Hallenbeck's General Store in North Hollywood.

Mark Nutter said of this year's show: "We will be joined by 'Re-Animator the Musical's' Graham Skipper (Herbert West), Brian Gillespie, and Liesel Hanson. We also premiere our musical version of 'A Christmas Carol' titled 'Keeping the Dick in Dickens.'"

When I asked about this being a Hanukkah Special, Nutter added, "Hanukkah, like Christmas, is for drunks."

Please note that Cinema Junkie will be taking a brief vacation and will return with new podcasts on Feb. 1.

Thanks for listening throughout the year. If you are in the holiday giving spirit, consider donating to this listener-supported podcast at KPBS or for a cheaper but no less appreciated option go to iTunes and leave a review.

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