A Little Background Story on a very smart, funny and gutsy guy:
Joe Bob Briggs, is a legendary television host, syndicated American writer, film critic, comic performer, actor, and all around patron saint of the lost art of the Drive In Movie Theater. He started out his career as a movie reviewer at Texas Monthly and The Dall Times Herald.
It was while working at the Herald that alias John Irving Bloom created his dynamic persona as Joe Bob Briggs, who’s satirical commentary on the ‘Exploitation’ movie genre gave birth to an unapologetic, unrelenting, proud male chauvinist, non conforming and rebellious redneck who holds a sentimental gestalt for Drive In movie theaters and their schlocky largesse , the relic of a time when the B movie was a sanctified art form as far as us horror movie freaks and geeks are concerned.
Joe Bob payed a humorous homage in his reviews to those by gone days of cult films and drive-in movies as he distinguished them from “indoor bullshit.”
In addition to his usual parody of urbane, high-brow movie criticism, his columns characteristically include colorful tales of woman-troubles and high-spirited brushes with the law, tales which inevitably conclude with his rush to catch a movie at a local drive-in, usually with female companionship. The reviews typically end with a brief rating of the “high points” of the movie in question, including the types of action (represented by nouns naming objects used in fight scenes suffixed with –fu), the number of bodies, number of female breasts bared, the notional number of pints of blood spilled, and for appropriately untoward movies a “vomit meter”.A typical such concluding paragraph would be, “No dead bodies. One hundred seventeen breasts. Multiple aardvarking. Lap dancing. Cage dancing. Convenience-store dancing. Blindfold aardvarking. Blind-MAN aardvarking. Lesbo Fu. Pool cue-fu. Drive-In Academy Award nominations for Tane McClure. Joe Bob says check it out.” “Aardvarking” is Brigg’s euphemism for sexual intercourse.
This is a little dialogue with one of Joe’s counting bits from the show featuring
The Evil Dead 2:
Thanks to Intricate Idiot he caught my brain fart as I accidentally tagged the dialogue below as having come from Evil Dead 2 when of course it was from Phantasm 2. The Tall Man geez, MonsterGirl thanks them for that eagle eye correction!
From Phantasm II (1988)
“It has 3 Flying Silver Balls instead of the one in the original flick and a severed hand instead of a levitating severed finger, but otherwise it’s the same deal, The Tall Man is taking corpses down to his mortuary and turning them into killer midget monks again! So lets take a look at those drive in totals…We’ve got:
12 Dead Bodies, an exploding house, one four barreled squared off shot gun, dwarf tossing, 10 breasts. Course those are scissored out of the TNT version. Embalming needles plunged through various parts of various bodies, one motor vehicle chase with ‘crash and burn’, Ear lopping, forehead drilling, wrist hacking, bimbo flinging, grandma bashing, devil sex, crematorium fu, flame thrower fu”- Joe Bob
Although Joe Bob’s reviews covered Drive In movies, he eventually expanded his humorous tongue in cheek commentary to Video and DVD releases.
In July of 1985 Joe Bob debuted his one man show in Cleveland which was a mixture of story telling, comedy and music. Originally called An Evening With Joe Bob Briggs eventually it turned into Joe Bob Dead In Concert. He performed in over fifty venues over the course of two years.
What evolved from the stage show in 1986 was his television guest hosting of Drive In Theater, which was a late night B movie show on the cable network’s The Movie Channel. There he became so popular that he was signed to a long term contract. Joe Bob did the movie introductions also included The Mail Girl Honey Gregory. Drive In had become the network’s highest-rated show that ran for almost ten years, and was twice nominated for the industry’s Cable ACE Award. Joe Bob began appearing on numerous talk shows and became quite the late night celebrity. Joe joked that “calling her Honey probably pissed off the FemiNazi’s who wrote him letters and hated women being called honey,” so it was fun that, Honey was her real name.
I had a similar experience with a group of uptight grad students reading me the riot act for calling my redneck neighbor Bubba, who blew up his garage deep frying a turkey, until I informed them that Bubba was in fact his given name…geez people, take a Valium.
When the network changed their formatting in 1996, it wasn’t long before Joe Bob joined TNT where he began to host Monstervision, which he did for four years ending in July 2000 after once again the network changed it’s formatting.In the late nineties he spent two seasons as a commentator on Comedy Central’s The Daily Show, and he starred in Frank Henenlotter(Basketcase 1982) documentary Hershell Gordon Lewis Godfather of Gore.
Recently, Joe Bob has appeared in several interviews on the cult movie web site Mondo Video
Joe Bob has stayed active as a writer, freelancing for such publications as The Village Voice, Rolling Stone, Interview and Playboy. He was the regular humor columnist and theater critic at the National Review and has published 5 books of satire. Joe Bob Briggs’ movie reviews are collected in the now out-of-print books, Joe Bob Goes to the Drive-In, and Joe Bob Goes Back to the Drive-In. He has also penned, The Cosmic Wisdom of Joe Bob Briggs, Iron Joe Bob and A Guide to Western Civilization, or My Story.
Until 1998 Joe Bob had two syndicated columns in The New York Times. Joe Bob Goes to the Drive- In and Joe Bob’s America. Though he had retired from writing his reviews, it was the popular demand to hear his point of view, that got him to start up the “Drive-In column again in 2000 this time for United Press International.
He also began another column called “The Vegas Guy, which was Joe Bob’s weekly excursion to the casino world.
In 2003 he gave us the books Profoundly Disturbing: Shocking Movies That Changed History and Profoundly Erotic: Sexy Movies that Changed History.
Joe Bob has returned to TNT to host MonsterVision horror movie marathons. He appears live at various spooky conventions and does guest appearances to raise awareness for the need to bring back The Drive-In movie theater or just to spread the joy of the B movie schlock we all love.
Briggs has contributed audio commentaries to DVDs which include some favorites Jesse James Meets Frankenstein’s Daughter, Warlock Moon, I Spit On Your Grave, and several Ray Dennis Steckler films including The Incredibly Strange Creatures Who Stopped Living and Became Mixed Up Zombies.
Joe still actively runs his internet website, where you can follow his exploits around the country, read a collection of movie reviews. There’s Damn Good Writing, MonsterVision, Joe Bob writing as John Bloom, The Vegas Guy, Advice For The Hopeless, Book Reviews and Interviews and so much more! Like his very popular “If You’re Not a Catholic Please Shut Up!”
You can also purchase his out of print books from his website too!!!!
MonsterGirl- (Jo Gabriel)
“I used to watch Monstervision on TNT and became an instant fan of yours. I thought you were hilarious and pretty sexy too!…
I loved what you were doing for classic and B horror films, having grown up with Chiller Theater and that adorable claymation hand that pops up and starts articulating those decaying fleshy 6 fingers to the creepy 70s sound effects. I consider your presence as a part of my trajectory as MonsterGirl.”
“As a savvy film guy who knows how to do a proper breast count , why do you think it always comes as a shock to most people that chicks actually love horror films?
There are gazillions of us intelligent estrogen flingers who know more critical theory about the classic horror and cult film genres than a lot of dudes with bad mullets.
What’s your sage opinion on this phenomena?”
– MonsterGirl (Jo Gabriel)
Joe Bob Briggs-
The horrorchick is a relatively recent phenomenon and public perception hasn’t caught up yet. Ad campaigns for classic horror films were always directed at males, under the theory that it was the guy who chose the movie on date night. That doesn’t mean there wasn’t a female audience before, it just means that they came out of the closet in the nineties and there are still more male horror fans than female.”
Thank you big guy! Your Chick Fan with a breast count of two, Joey MonsterGirl!
PS as an ironic follow up to this post, just this week I took a screen capture of Google. It seems they think I am a young boy, in terms of my film and cultural tastes….Hhmm talk about your blind sample!
2 thoughts on “MonsterGirl Asks: Joe Bob Briggs”
I love this post, it is very well done. Although, and I could be very wrong about this, the piece that you copied says it is about Evil Dead 2, but it sounds like Phantasm 2 to me. Like I said, I could be off base on that.
I got the chance to meet Joe Bob at a convention once, he was actually the main reason I went, he is a great guy.
Anyway, you have a new follower, keep up the good work!
I am grateful for your pointing out that little brain fart to me. Of course it was from Phantasm II. The Tall Man has sent shivers through me since the very first time he lumbered onto the screen. I’m so glad you caught my flub.
It’s wonderful to hear from you, glad you stopped by The Drive-In and I hope you stop by again. Also Joe Bob seems like a very wise and rugged everyman who doesn’t mind sharing a few words with his fans!
Thanks for the support, I’ve linked to your great blog as well!
Cheers MonsterGirl Joey