The Double Shadow: A Clark Ashton Smith Podcast

Archive for August, 2012

Episode #11: “Mother of Toads”

This week’s episode is on “Mother of Toads” (abridged version here). As with “Maker of Gargoyles,” we warn listeners that this story does contain sexual assault, in this case against a male.

IMDB page for The Theatre Bizarre in which the “Mother of Toads” adaptation Phil mentioned appears (and picture of Richard Stanley). A trailer for the horror compilation in which the “Mother of Toads” film appears The Theatre of the Bizarre. A clip in which the wife buys the Elder Sign earring.

The Dark Horse Book of Witchcraft, in which an illustrated (but not graphic novel/comic) version of “Mother of Toads” appears.

Next time, we will be reading “The Enchantress of Sylaire.”

Thanks again to Kevin MacLeod for the music.

Episode #10: “The Disinterment of Venus”

A transcription of this episode is now available.

This week is a somewhat shorter episode on Smith’s “Disinterment of Venus.” After a number of revisions, this story first appeared in the July 1934 issue of Weird Tales alongside “Through the Gates of the Silver Key” by HPL and E. Hoffman Price and other stories.

The goddess Smith had originally intended to conflate with this Venus was
Kotys (or “Cotys”, “Cotto”, “Cottyto”, “Cottytus” depending on the spelling). According to Brewer’s Dictionary of Phrase & Fable, her priests were called “Baptes”

[their] midnight orgies were so obscene that they disgusted even the even the goddess herself. (p.73)

Our next episode will be “Mother of Toads.” This one will carry a warning for sexual violence.

Music by: Kevin MacLeod, Illustration by Mike Mucci.

Episode #9: “The Holiness of Azédarac”

This week’s episode is on Clark Ashton Smith’s “The Holiness of Azédarac” (originally titled “The Satanic Prelate”). “Holiness” was published in Weird Tales in November of 1933.

Illustration of the Holiness of Azedarac

You can hear H.P. Lovecraft & Clark Ashton Smith discussing the history of Averoigne as used in this story in our two interludes: Lovecraft’s letter to CAS and Smith’s letter to HPL.

If you missed the allusions in the text, Iog-Sotôt is Yog-Sothoth of HPL fame and Sodagui is Tsathoggua of CAS’s pantheon/pandemonium. Both are undoubtedly CAS’s attempts to mimic the evolution of pronunciations through the centuries. Lilit is Lilith, first wife of Adam who is thought to be perhaps a demon or a monster.

Our next episode will be “The Disinterment of Venus.”

Special thanks to the Hay Library for being so friendly on our visit and to Mike Mucci for the Azédarac drawing!

Music by: Kevin MacLeod