Issue 4 (November 2013)
40 Pages (A5)

First published back in November of 2013, issue four of Jack Bantry’s ‘Splatterpunk Zine’ offered up another load of A5 black & white pages, packed with more stories, articles, reviews and interviews of uncompromisingly violent horror and gore.  Like with the previous issues, the zine was made available for purchase via Bantry’s ‘Splatterpunk Zine’ website.

You Sick Fuck or Why I Love Extreme Horror (An Essay) – Jeff Burk – 1 Page
Kicking off issue four we have a short essay by head-editor of Deadite Press, Jeff Burk, on why people enjoy extreme horror, and the absurdity of people complaining that horror sometimes goes too far.  It’s an honest and interesting overview of the principals behind horror and its natural progression to more extreme imagery and ideas.  And (for me at least) it makes you feel that little bit better about enjoying the stuff you do!

I’m On My – Shane McKenzie – 5 Pages
With a baby on the way and them on the verge of buying a new home, the timing of his much-deserved and long-awaited promotion couldn’t have been better.  Furthermore, Morris had been given the rest of the day off to go home and celebrate.  He sent a quick text to Melissa, telling her he was on his way home with big news for them to celebrate, and then he left planning to pick up some celebratory supplies en route.  Unfortunately for Morris, his journey home would prove to be a life changing one.  But it would be even more so for the young child that Morris accidently hits…

This is a dark and depressing one.  For the first half to two-thirds of the short author Shane McKenzie sets the scene and works hard establishing the character of Morris and his ‘loving family man’ life.  In fact, for a while it feels like the story’s just treading water, until ‘bam!’ Morris has hit the child and his whole world is turned upside-down.  From here it’s grim, tense and incredibly hard-hitting stuff.  It’s brutal and utterly cold, but delivered to absolute perfection.  At the end of the day, it’s Shane McKenzie – so you know the score.

The story includes a full page illustration by Glenn Chadbourne.

A Bit Of Christmas Mayhem – Jeff Strand – 3.5 Pages
Finding yourself in a darkened alleyway on Christmas Eve surrounded by three Santa’s carrying axes was never going to be a good predicament to be in.  Unfortunately for Andrew Mayhem, that’s precisely the situation he was facing.  Three Santas, each clutching an axe, wanting Mayhem to hand over his wallet.  Where’s the festive spirit in that?...

I abso-fucking-lutely love this one.  I have to admit I was laughing out loud at it.  This is brilliant.  Pure horror humour putting you well-and-truly in the mood for the Christmas festivities.  Strand’s wonderfully deadpan recurring character Andrew Mayhem returns with a short that’s crammed to the rafters with festive horror goodness – an absolute must read for horror aficionados who slam on ‘Silent Night, Deadly Night’ (1984) once a year, or indeed that Tales From The Crypt episode with the escaped axe-wielding lunatic in a Santa outfit.  This is pure unadulterated festive horror fun through and through.  Love it.  Jeff Strand is pure class.

The story includes a full page illustration by Dan Henk.

Wicking – Robert Essig & Jack Bantry – 4.5 Pages
Jennifer Torez had three very simple rules she practiced.  Get in, Get it on, and Get out.  It was a code that had treated her well ever since she’d first become a prostitute in Downtown Ramona.  But now, as she looked into the lopsided eyes of the leather mask wearing loner sat in front of her, she not only felt gut-wrenchingly repulsed by him, but also scared to the bone.  Around here everyone knew about the guy.  There were plenty of rumours flying around about why he permanently wore the mask.  But whatever the reason, Jennifer realised that she felt scared for her life.  Looking into those eyes, she now realised that there was little to no sanity lurking behind them.  This man.  This beast known as Wicking, was not only insane, but he was fucking dangerous…

Fancy something brutal and drenched in blood splatter?  Well then, you need look no further!  Here US author Robert Essig joins forces with Mr Splatterpunk himself – Jack Bantry – to deliver up a thick bloodsoaked chunk of extreme horror with a definite touch of Ed Gein ala ‘The Texas Chainsaw Massacre’ (1974) about it.  The plot’s as simple as they come.  You’ve got a disfigured redneck who wears a leather gimp mask day-in-day-out.  To keep him going this oddball loner has his weary younger brother drop off hookers and booze to the isolated shack he calls home.  Of course, said hooker isn’t going to come away from the ordeal alive.  That’s blatantly on the cards from the outset.  But the unravelling story that follows is still utterly compelling stuff.  Okay, so no great shocks or twists to be had here.  But it nevertheless delivers brutality and grim-faced horror with a wickedly straight-to-the-point gusto.  Love it.

The story includes a full page illustration by Jim Agpalza.

Ricochet - J.F. Gonzalez – 10 Pages
Nick Clapp heard about from his co-worker Ken Atkins.  Some six months ago, Ken had been going through hell with an outrageous paternity lawsuit that was completely unjustified.  It’d turned Ken’s life upside-down whilst draining a considerable amount of their income away.  But then he found the answer to his problem at  It was a search engine unlike any others.  It was stripped bare, without any corporate branding or aesthetic appeal.  But the results it brought back were spot on.  It told you how to deal with those difficult dilemmas.  How to solve those problems that were wrecking your life.  It could be just what Nick needed to sort out his problem.  For a long time now his wife Karen had been abusing Nick and their son Billy.  Maybe this website could help them get away from Karen for good.  Maybe Billy and him could finally start a new life somewhere else.  All he had to do was follow the advice on…

This one’s fucking outstanding!  What a read.  It’s not exactly pumped full of splatter, horror or violence, but goddamn if it isn’t just one hell of an engaging read.  Gonzalez can write.  He’s narrative is without padding or flouncy wordmanship, but instead pulls you along with the constantly turning gears behind the story itself.  There’s so much carefully woven intrigue in this short.  Of course it’s all underlain with an unshakable feeling of something sinister lurking underneath it all.  And Gonzalez plays on this so damn well.  The ricochet effect feels inevitable even if it’s not justifiable in the slightest.  But it’s there.  And you’ll be clawing at the pages to see how it all turns out for poor old Nick.

The story includes a full page illustration by Daniele Serra.

John Skipp & Shane Mckenzie – ‘Talk Horror’ Interview – 4 Pages
Jack Bantry interviews splatterpunk legend John Skipp along with Bizarro-cum-extreme horror author Shane Mckenzie, covering such topics as what attracted them to horror, the original splatterpunk scene of the 80’s, whether horror films are still shocking, what’s happened to horror fiction, and writing screenplays.  Both Skipp and Mckenzie offer up consistently interesting and in-depth answers whilst throwing plenty of names around for anyone wanting to check out some new authors.

J.F. Gonzalez – Interview – 3 Pages
US author J.F. Gonzalez tells Splatterpunk Zine about how he first got interested in horror, the financial hardship of being a writer, a typical day in the life of J.F. Gonzalez, collaborating on novels in particular ‘Sixty-Five Stirrup Iron Road’ (2013), and finally where we are with horror fiction today.  It’s a great little interview offering a bit of an eye-opener for many regarding the financial side of writing fiction, as well as a good insight into how writers collaborate on novels.

Book Reviews - 2 Pages
The Killings – J.F. Gonzalez & Wrath James White
Down – Nate Southard
Ash Street – Lee Thomas
NOS4R2 – Joe Hill
The Summer Job – Adam Cesare

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