Saturday, April 10

Swap Meet Finds: Meet the proud owner of one of only three British Fletch Lives VHS in America...

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Sometimes you just find in the weirdest tapes in your own figurative backyard. I'm moseying about one of my usual haunts this morning and spy one of the many piles of unwanted Disney VHS clamshells cluttering the buyer's landscape. But my eye zeros in on one non-Mickey Mouse studio tape atop the usually worthless dump of kid's movies-- a clamshell with the original poster art of Fletch Lives. This was unusual because MCA/Universal never issued their releases in big plastic clamshell cases. Though it wasn't out of the realm of possibility the cover was old rental advert cut from a magazine by the hands of some video store. I've seen this practice and own a couple of examples. I guess certain shops wanted the larger art to scream louder at customers back when the particular flick was fresh.

As I walked over I noticed that wasn't the case. Once I saw the foreign Universal and CIC Video logos along with the BBFC rating; I knew I was holding a VHS from the United Kingdom. I know it's just the sequel to Fletch, but you can't but wonder how in the hell and why it traveled across an ocean to the United States. The flick isn't a real cult item an astute collector would knowingly import, the tape is definitely 100% PAL video standard, and the seller certainly wasn't anything of the sort. I should have asked.

Anyway, enough about my stupid morning surprise, the rest of the loot scored on this trip certainly can be certified as a good haul. Found another Thorn EMI clamshell of Return of the Living Dead, fuck yea, and the Warner clam of Wolfen. The first tape to the right is a cover/box-less Video Gems Blood Couple also known as Bill Gunn's 1973 Ganja & Hess. Then we have the Virgin Vision Prom Night, Embassy's The Video Dead, Media's NOES 3, Media's Class of Nuke 'Em High, and the EP-speed cheapie "Best Video" 1990: Bronx Warriors. Las luchadoras contra la momia (Wrestling Women vs. the Aztec Mummy) (1964) is a mail order tape from "The Fang" based in New York. The movie isn't hard to find, but this tape is cool nonetheless. "Horrible Horror" is a "rarish", 110 minute horror flick clip compilation hosted by the Cool Ghoul himself, Zacherley, from Goodtimes Video. The Embassy tape of '71's Lady Frankenstein has the designation of looking better than the glut of shitty dollar store DVDs and I should definitely add this to the list of horror "enhanced" by VHS. Rounding things out are Troma's Screamplay (1985), Media's The Man from Clover Grove (1975), and Henry Rollins - You Saw Me Up There.
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