by Brent Eyestone
A little while back, I digitized a VHS tape for my friend Peter Whitley. It was a short DIY film called Asleep in the Wild Kingdom that he helped his buddy Benjamin Beebe with back in 1990. Benjamin lived in Seattle and rode for the Fallout Records/Skateboards team. He attended shows, made zines, and constantly pushed himself to create things. I never knew him, but it was nice getting a peak into his brain via the film.
From the back cover of the hand-made packaging:
'ASLEEP IN THE WILD KINGDOM' is the only film I know that successfully integrates themes of media addiction, alienation, and Tolstoyan redemption with 'The Price is Right,' 7-11, an especially manic junk food scene.
The Man's television is his electronic siamese twin, his perception filtered through the dull red-green-blue of its six inch screen. Even in his dreams, the television is an alter (sic) at which he sacrifices his will.
'ASLEEP IN THE WILD KINGDOM' is the 'Reefer Madness' of television addiction, a provocative parable of... uh, I gotta go. 'Sgt. Bilko's on.
- W. Shellabarger
Digitizing this tape triggered an inspiration to try to dig up my old Fallout Records newsprint catalogs from the late 80's and early 90's... those things kept me tremendously occupied as I tried to learn and understand the punk/hardcore/underground stuff going on at the time. I remember the selection being rather comprehensive and I would spend hours wondering what Pussy Galore or Big Black even sounded like. Here's Robert Crumb and Husker Dü hanging out in front of the store before it ultimately closed shop in 2003.