The Thirteenth Hour Podcast #358: Welcome My Brother, Jeremy, as We Talk About The Heroic Trio (東方三俠, 1993)
This week, my brother and I are watching The Heroic Trio (東方三俠 – literally – “Eastern three heroes”), a 1993 film we first saw on cable TV as kids, around the time of the British / Hong Kong handover in 1997. Whatever network it was (TBS or TNT, I think) showed a bunch of Hong Kong films back to back during that 24 hour period (if I recall correctly). This was one we watched, and man, or man, what a weird one we sat through. I’m surprised that it was shown on network TV given some of the stuff that’s in it, but who knows, maybe no one had watched it beforehand. I recall hoping we’d catch one or two kung fu flicks, and though this one does have some high flying wire-fu martial arts, it’s hard to classify this film, since it has a lot of variety – noir, superhero, action, comedy, and horror, not to mention the particular feel of Hong Kong cinema at the time. Click on the coverart below to buy your own copy or check here where you can find it streaming.
If you really want to capture the spirit of Hong Kong cinema, you may want to see if you can find the film on VCD. VCD was a format that never really took off in the States, but in many parts of the world, like in Asia, where VHS had issues (humidity / heat and thin film aren’t a great combo), VCDs were a low cost alternative that was comparable in quality to VHS, especially in the days before DVDs and DVD players were widely available. Jeremy and I talk on the show about places in NYC where you used to be able to find tons of these discs, but they (probably) are much harder to come by now, though occasionally, you can find copies on eBay.
Here are a few clips – a trailer, another fan made one set to the intro song sung by Anita Mui, one of the leads, and a clips of one of crazy fight scenes from the film.
Jeremy and I will be back next month to discuss the 80s medieval film, Lionheart! Perhaps in the future we’ll do more Hong Kong cinema of the era.
Check out Jeremy‘s work over at Pixel Grotto, CBR.com, and Classic Batman Panels on IG. You can support his work on Ko-fi and get access to in-depth, exclusive Batman content here. If you are of the DnD persuasion, his articles on DnD Beyond may be right up your alley. Thanks, Jeremy, for coming on the show!
This summer, if you’re looking for an adult of child mask, check out Thirteenth Hour mask combo package on Etsy. This fall, it became really hard to find good quality masks for our kids as they were going back to school. There are still long wait times for some of the companies we like best, so I thought, why not try to find an alternative? I eventually settled on the triple layer masks available for printing on by the company Flashbay. They were one of the few companies I found that were transparent about their third party safety data (Junior: https://static.flashbay.com/images/certificates/Junior_REACH.pdf?v=1617870020, Adult: https://static.flashbay.com/images/certificates/Sky_Performance.pdf?v=1603078812) which is nice. I was impressed by how well these masks performed on the filtration tests, even after repeat washings. Also, I really liked how both the ears and nose piece could be adjusted for a good fit.
The Thirteenth Hour mask combo also comes with Thirteenth Hour hand sanitizer! (But of course.)
There are now Thirteenth Hour toys! If you’d like to pick up one of these glow in the dark figures for yourself, feel free to email me or go to the Etsy store I set up (https://www.etsy.com/shop/ThirteenthHourStudio) and get them there.
If the past few months have got you needing a break, you may want to chill out to this 80s synth throwback track for a upcoming LP with the accompanying music video:
Empty Hands, the synth EP soundtrack to the novella, Empty Hands, is now out for streaming on Bandcamp.
Stay tuned. Follow along on Spotify! There is also a growing extended Thirteenth Hour playlist on Spotify with a growing number of retro 80s songs.
As always, thanks for listening!
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