Ryan Policky and The Enigma on their horror-themed booth at Denver Comic Con
The Enigma (left) and Ryan Policky.
Ryan Policky of Bloodshed Deathbath Productions is teaming up with The Enigma and Daniel Crosier of Mother Mind Studios to present one of the most unusual booths at Denver Comic Con 2014 where Crosier, The Enigma and Serana Rose, along with their comic-artist collaborators, will release issue 3 of Show Devils, in which the Enigma and Rose are main characters.
The Enigma, wth his unmistakable tattoos and body modifications, became known internationally as one of the founding members of the Jim Rose Circus; he has continued to perform woldwide since parting ways with the Circus in 1998, and also had a memorable 1995 appearance in an episode of the popular television show The X-Files. Some may know Policky for his musical projects like Pure Drama and, more recently, A Shoreline Dream and Genessier. For the last several years, Policky has also been producing and releasing short horror movies through Bloodshed Deathbath Productions, including Barnum Splatter, The Well and Motel London, whose sequel Policky will release during Denver Comic Con. In advance of this weekend's events, we visited with Policky and The Enigma at Policky's house in the Barnum neighborhood, where we discussed what will separate their booth from the other offerings at this year's Comic Con, why Policky hates zombies, why The Enigma is relocating to Denver and what sorts of things The Enigma will be reading at Mutiny Information Cafe on Sunday.
Westword: Tell us about the booth set-up. Ryan Policky: The booth set-up is a conjoined effort between me, The Enigma and Daniel Crosier. Half of our booth is confirmed to be haunted, so we have to designate that side as the haunted section. But it's actually an entrance into our madness. So you go into this booth and you can join all of our weirdness. There's going to be Midian Crosby of Monster Make-up Effects. She's Monster Midian. She did horror effects for my movie. She's going to do something that'll look like somebody carved a little puzzle piece into your face. So you can go into the booth and get that little prosthetic put on, which will be fun.
Is that puzzle piece based on your face?
The Enigma: You're going to want to be there, of course, because of world-renowned and international star The Enigma. Or The Ego-nigma, as they say. I'm the only one who calls me that. I'll be there at the booth and if you buy a comic book for $10, Daniel Crosier will sign it. Serana Rose, who stars in the comic book, will sign it. The Enigma, who stars in it, will sign it. Shea FreeLove will also sign it. Batman is not going to actually be there signing his own comic books. So the people in the comic book are signing their own comic book -- that's just gold right there. Of course, you can get a free photo with me once you purchase said comic book.
All of the Bloodshed Deathbath Productions movies will be available for $5 each?
Ryan Policky: Yes. We've made eight movies and the latest is Motel London 2, which is based on the cult hit Motel London, which is about hobo wizards who melt people's faces off. Part two is kind of, "Where did they go after melting all these faces off in part one? Is it really a video game?" So you find out in Motel London 2. Last year we sold so many of Motel London that it was a big spur to do this one. People want to see, they need to know what these wizards are all about. No zombies. Just so you know, Bloodshed Deathbath Productions is anti-zombies. I hate zombies. They can die.
Why the zombie hate?
Ryan Policky: Because it's like if you're going to come up with a concept or an idea, the easiest fucking thing you can do is say, "Let's do zombies. Zombies are scary!" Maybe if you meld a zombie with something else weird and not just zombie, then it's cool. I used to love zombies when I grew up. Those original movies were amazing: Day of the Dead, Dawn of the Dead, Return of the Living Dead, Night of the Living Dead and Creepshow. Even though Creepshow kind of took it to the next step. That kind of stuff influenced me but it made me think, well you have to come up with some kind of new concept that's weird and off-kilter.
The Enigma: BSDB will be looking for a starlet for Motel London 3. We'll be screening a lot of the Cosplay contestants but we will be looking for a starlet for the next film so anybody out there that wants to be the next starlet should get a hold of us. Keep reading for more from Ryan Policky and The Enigma.
You're not based out of Denver normally?
The Enigma: I just moved all of my stuff into a storage space here. Looking at the country I was thinking where's the easiest spot. I do shows West Coast, East Coast and all around the world. But where can I center myself? Denver has a pretty active airport. I'd been planning this move for a couple of years. Then, just before I got here, all of a sudden they made -- what's that stuff? -- marijuana legal. I thought, that's kind of convenient since I know people out there that smoke and I'd hate to be standing next to someone enjoying the after-smoke and getting arrested for guilty by association.
This comic convention is going to be amazing. It's my second year and last year everybody wanted a photo with myself and Serana Rose and myself. We were so relieved when number two came out and we're so happy that the turd, the third, comic came out. It's practically poetry the way I say that. The coolest thing about doing the comic convention is we're able to do stunts we're not able to do at the 3 Kings shows because normally we're flying from here to there, but since all our stuff is in storage here it's easy to pop over there and grab the stuff and you'll see the lightning generator with half a million volts of electricity coursing around Serana Rose's body and the neon swallowing. Of course, all the chainsaw stunt routines where we put blindfolds on and apples in our mouths and carve them up with chainsaws. I'm sure you've seen that on the website showdevils.com and all the links are on theenigmalive.com.
The coolest thing here on this third edition is Shea FreeLove is going to be here. He's got all of Bobby Reynolds's stuff from the sideshows and the circuses back in the day. He's carried it through the last fifty years even through all the TV generation and stuff. Even though all television and video games have taken from circus and sideshow, he's kept it going. Now Shea is investing himself into Denver as well. So you're going to see some amazing things come up.
You mentioned Cosplay earlier. Has anyone come up to you with the X-Files costumes who is a big fan of that second season episode of the show called "Humbug"?
The Enigma: No. Nobody's done that yet. It would be cool to have a Scully and Mulder come up to me and say, "Let's get a photo together." If Dave or Gillian showed up it would be cool if they did that. I know they're big fans and I know he's talked about me in interviews before. I hope I left a good impression. Chris Carter is great, too. Darin Morgan, an amazing writer. Kim Manners is a great director. It's strange that they had different ideas about how to shoot that episode itself. If you're an X-Files fan, bring that video or DVD or whatever and I'll sign it.
You're doing readings for children at Mutiny on Sunday at six?
The Enigma: Yes. It probably depends on the audience that shows up, but I might be doing some improv on some Grimm's fairytales. Kind of letting people knowing about my friends and how they got shafted on the storytelling. You know, like the troll, my friend. He was living under that bridge. He bought the lot so he was paying the mortgage on it. There was just this bridge and it was a quiet place and he's an older gentleman for a troll. He's taking his noon nap and all of a sudden, trip trap trip trap, this goat is walking across his bridge. You know the farmer over there is letting his goats just do whatever.
He's a little upset so he decides, this goat is going to be his meal. He's a carnivore. People eat goats and sheep, too. He's a troll and he can communicate with these animals and the goat says, "Don't eat me. Let me go over there on the good side and feed on the grass. Give me a life to live. Don't make me be a caged animal that's force fed corn. Then I'll grow up and be bigger and better tasting. In the meantime, my brother is coming across."
In good faith, the troll is like, "All right, he's a good guy, I'll let this goat go and live and have an even better life and I'll have the goat later." You know how the story goes. I'm just saying he got totally shafted.
I hear he's living under the Fremont bridge in Seattle.
The Enigma: I've heard that. Times are rough. He's probably tired of all the country stories about him being a bumpkin who eats goats. I think he's turned vegetarian since all of that.
Ryan Policky and The Enigma will be with Serana Rose at their booth at Denver Comic Con at the Colorado Convention Center on Friday, June 13 and Saturday, June 14, with an after-party appearance at 3 Kings Tavern at 9 p.m. each night. The Enigma and Rose will also make an appearance at Mutiny Information Café on Sunday, June 15, reading children's stories from 6 to 8 p.m.