Friday, January 14, 2005

Catholic Horror

Found this while surfing: Kristong Itim (or The Black Christ), a project blog run by this local guy for a set of fictional horror stories in the Philippines.

As the introduction notes:

It was said that magic realism and science fiction can’t work within the Philippine context because the every day reality of the Philippines is often times absurd and fantastic. What if these modern horrors collide with the Filipino’s very rich folklore, mythology and history? Hopefully it’ll make for truly scary stories. If these modern horrors don’t get to you, maybe we should kick it up a notch and add some of the bizarre and the supernatural into them. Maybe we can’t top stories reported by the tabloids like women giving birth to milkfishes but we’ll try. Some of the stories take off from celebrated cases: the Lucia Lalu murder, the Lapiang Malaya Massacre, the Balangiga Massacre, the Vizconde Massacre…(we have too many massacres in our history don’t we?) Tiyanak in Escolta? Werewolves in Samar? Vampires in Paranaque? Why not.

The site is apparently a collection of strange headlines combined with the progress of the work involved as well as insights on weird tales. For example, everyone has heard of our national hero being linked to Adolph Hitler, right? Well, here is a possible connection to Jack the Ripper.

Unfortunately, you need to register to read the work and I'm cat-wary about putting down my name into any forms.

Strangely enough, I've done a number of blog posts about 'secret histories' ever since I read and did a review of Tim Powers' Declare. I suppose it's just me but I'm gaining a fascination of this idea, especially in the context of Philippine writing.

I know this is nothing new. Hell, turn on the television and you'll see the latest X-Files/ Millennium/ John Doe yadda-yadda what-not series wherein there's a secret history running underneath the skin of the world.

But still, look at the Philippines news and there's a good chance you'll ask: what the hell is happening to our country? Anyway, if the absurd or the grotesque seems to be an ongoing motif in our everyday lives, why not give it a reason, right?

In the secret history, everything is possible.

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