Volley 5 by Jason Santa Maria
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Play-By-Play Commentary

Big Top Terror

For years I thought the phrase Eyes Without A Face was just the title to a Billy Idol song, unaware that a 1959 masterpiece of surrealism bore the same name. Not that the 80's themselves weren't something of a masterpiece of surrealism ...

And here they are again, those faceless eyes. A swarm of them, seemingly. And, of course, the clown. You knew it was only a matter of time before there'd be a clown.

Clowns, of course, are like zombies: they terrify us because they fall squarely into the Uncanny Valley. That is to say, they look human enough that we regard them as "people," but different enough that we react with revulsion. Whoever though clowns would be suitable entertainment for tots and folks in nursing homes had clearly not boned up on his psychological theory.

A bold move here, as Jason confronts Brian on his own turf. Has he fallen into a trap set by his opponent? Or will Brian, as he's wont to do, disregard the home field advantage, and strike off in an entirely new direction.

One thing to note about this volley: it's the first that strikes me genuinely horrific. There is no cuteness or in-jokes to soften the edges. Even the jacket pattern (taken from Candykiller, by the way) only serves to heighten the unreality of the scene.

We are halfway through. Our descent into madness begins.

Play by play commentary for this match is provided, as it happens, by Matthew Baldwin.


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