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It’s Time, My Dear Readers, For Me to Say Goodbye

Yes, that's me

Hey everyone. I hate having to write this but I would hate it even more if I left without saying goodbye to all of you. So yes, this is me saying that I am no longer writing for Bloody-Disgusting or Cinema Runner. This is me saying farewell to all of you and wanting to take this last opportunity to say a few words about my experience with this site and all that it has offered me.

I started writing for Bloody-Disgusting back in October of 2009. I came aboard because I pestered Brad (Mr. Disgusting) and Tom (you may remember his Infected name KillRobot), the owners of BD, relentlessly until they allowed me to write for the music section. The deal was that I was supposed to submit two album reviews per month. That’s it. So what did I do? I contacted every record label I could think of to let them know that I was writing for Bloody-Disgusting, the internet’s largest and most recognized horror website as an album reviewer. On top of getting promo copies for review purposes, I was suddenly talking with the labels’ PR and marketing departments who wanted to see about getting more done with the site.

Hey Jonathan! On top of doing a review, would you want to do an in-person interview for the site?” Ummm, yes?

Hey dude! Love your site! Can we also do a contest to give away 10 copies of the album?” Uhhh, I think we can arrange that? (I did)

Your site is awesome! Let’s get our bands talking about their favorite horror movies! What do you say?” I say fuck yeah!

I took the initiative to go above and beyond what I was asked not because I wanted to appear like someone they needed to hire full-time but because I got swept up in the fever of what I could bring to the site. I did all of this because I wanted to support the bands and artists I loved while also giving the BD readers new content and, hopefully, new music to listen to. I mean, if I loved them, maybe you would too?

I continued as the music editor for several years, interviewing huge names such as Corey Taylor of Slipknot, Kirk Hammett of Metallica, David Ellefson of Megadeth, Scott Ian of Anthrax, Slash of Guns N’ Roses, Rob Zombie, and more. I was able to premiere controversial videos like Cattle Decapitation’s “Forced Gender Reassignment” and Cephalic Carnage’s “Ohrwurm”. I gave away probably a dozen guitars over the years to people who I hope are getting endless amounts of joy from them.

For the site, I visited the sets of Don’t Breathe, Underworld: Blood Wars, Resident Evil: The Final Chapter, and I got to party it up in Pittsburgh’s ScareHouse when it was reskinned for Krampus. I got to represent BD at the 2016 Telluride Horror Show, a festival that introduced me to new friends and was one of the best experiences I’ve had. I went to Montreal in 2013 for the Fantasia Film Festival.

None of this is meant to sound like me bragging. Rather, it’s me reflecting on all that I’ve done, all the amazing opportunities I’ve had by being a part of this incredible website. I’ve made friends that I never would’ve known otherwise by being here. I’ve put smiles on the faces of countless people over the years, as well as a hefty dose of angry scowls. I’m not perfect and I fully admit that. What I’m getting at is that this site has been an absolutely amazing experience for me and I can’t imagine what my life would be like had I not sent the message that said, “I want to write for you.” Not only can I not imagine it, I don’t want to.

I think back on the years of me interacting with all of you and I can’t help but tear up. Yeah, I dealt with a fair amount of trolls but I also got to speak with an audience that is passionate, devoted, and deeply cares about the horror genre. I got to bare myself entire for you all not once, but twice, which you all embraced openly, making me feel loved, appreciated, and welcomed.

As I leave, I want to say a few things. First, take it easy on Brad. I know that many of you hate him. But very, very few of you know him like I do. Yes, he’s not an easy person but he is so devoted to what he does that it boggles the mind. He cares about this site more than anyone I know, aside from Tom, of course, and he genuinely loves horror. Admittedly, he sometimes doesn’t present it in a way that is easily accessible or even tolerable, but he never fails to mean well. Trust me on this as he and I have butted heads more times than I care to admit. He’s a good guy, readers. I promise you that.

Two, keep supporting the site. It’d be incredibly pretentious of me to imagine any of you not coming back to the site because I’m no longer here, but that’s not what I mean. What I’m saying is that sites like Bloody-Disgusting are always facing tough times because of how the internet works. I know many of you use ad block but I’m begging you to whitelist BD and then complain via Twitter, email, or even in the comments if the ads are obtrusive or impeding your ability to read articles. Every ad view helps ensure that the site can keep running. After all, you want to make sure John Squires can afford his yearly Fall spending spree on pumpkin-flavored beers, right?

Third, keep loving and supporting horror, in all its forms. I know that we’ve butted heads on whether some films I consider horror are or aren’t. But remember that horror is a feeling and those are unique to each and every one of us. We’re all individual people with our own tastes and reactions who just so happen to share in our love of this wonderful genre. Just because we may not agree on some things doesn’t mean that we should argue or vilify each other. Instead, embrace those differences between us. Cherish them and each other. Thank filmmakers for trying to make something that speaks to us, even if we don’t like it. We’re a genre that isn’t respected by the mainstream population, so we have to have each other’s backs.

Lastly, stay as passionate as you all are now. Your comments reflect your love of the genre and, hopefully, what this site does and has done for over 15 years. Your comments supporting the BD authors are what drive them to keep doing what they do each and every day. Tell us what you love. Tell us what you hate! But never stop talking to us.

To the BD authors I’ve worked with over the years, I can’t tell you how much I loved reading your work and how much I admired your passion and wit. To Tom and Brad, you will always have my boundless thanks for the opportunities that I was given by being a part of BD. To all the readers, you have my deepest and most heartfelt thanks for all the encouragement, love, support, and passion you’ve shown me all these years.

I don’t know what the next step in my journey will be but I know that I am stronger and better because of all of you.

Thank you for the most incredible seven years of my life.

Sincerely,
Jonathan Barkan



COMMENTS

127 Comments
  • Creepshow

    Well….CRUD! It was always a pleasure Jon, and I wish you luck with your future endeavors. It was always fun interacting with you. You were always polite, funny, and a stand up guy. Never change. You will be missed immensely! : (

    • Thank you for all your support and comments. We didn’t always agree but you never used that as a reason to troll or get upset. It was a pleasure talking with you.

      • Creepshow

        Please pop in and chat with us in the future. A lot of things you have said about some of your struggles have helped me keep my head up when things are shitty. So I want to sincerely thank you for that. Be well my friend, and I hope to talk to you in the future.

  • Saturn

    Good luck with whatever the future holds for you – we’re gonna miss you.
    Take care and have a great New Year!
    And remember – don’t drink and drive. You may spill some……

    😉

  • Who is Tom? Why Can’t I find any articles written by this mysterious figure? Wikipedia says he is a co-founder, but doesn’t do anything on the website itself, or?

    • Tom is the wizard behind the curtains. Trust me when I say he’s HUGELY important to BD.

  • Matt

    Goodbye Jonathan. I always enjoyed reading your articles. Though my opinion often differed from yours (especially on music), it was always clear that you wrote with passion and love. I really hope that life gives you whatever it is that you are looking for. Yours will be big shoes to fill, to be sure.

  • Daniel Kurland

    You shall be greatly missed!

  • Gavin Dobbs

    It’s not that I dislike Brad, it’s that he has a hate boner for Godzilla 2014 and brings it up every time he gets a chance 😀 Other than that, he’s a good guy.

    I’ll miss you Jonathan. You were always a blast to chat with.

    • I myself have mixed feelings about that movie but I can never sent that it’s gorgeous. And Godzilla’s roar? Hoowhee, it’s awesome!

      Thanks Gavin! The feeling is mutual!

  • Rohan Sorensen

    Bye man, thanks for being awesome!

  • Thanks Zachary! And funny you should mention that because my puppy’s name is Dante and everyone assumes it’s from Clerks when it’s actually after the Italian poet. I’m his Virgil for all his adventures!

  • Good luck on all of your endeavors! May you perpetually strive for purpose and constantly crave success!

    So… who gets to fill this gaping hole? LOL. *tosses hat in ring*

  • diapers

    I wish you luck and great fortunes. You will be missed here. Do pop in on occasion, though!

    • I’ll definitely be around in some way or another, even if just to chat in the comments!

  • The Horror Hunter

    You have been my favourite writer on this site, you’ll be missed. ☺

  • Cure4Humanity

    Good luck on your future endeavors and thank you for the time and dedication you’ve put in on this site.

  • ZIPPY

    He once threw an onion at me. Great guy. Wish him all the best.

    • I did?! I don’t remember this but I don’t doubt it! That sounds like something I’d totally do!

      • ZIPPY

        Just kidding. The only thing you have thrown at me is your awesomeness. Your talent will be missed. Thanks for the years of great articles and for sharing your knowledge. Peace & Love to you.

        • Damn, I thought there was a great story to be told. Ah well, c’est la vie…

          But seriously, thank you for the kind and wonderful words!

  • ScriptGiverTJ

    Where’s your next destination dude?

    • Unknown as of now. The only thing I’m certain of is that I’m going to take a few days off. It’s been a while since I’ve been able to do that, so I feel like it’s kinda earned!

  • hacknslash

    Cheers dude keep it Evil good luck don’t take this the wrong way but…lolhttps://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/64d1c3aad6464a9c5622a63da56c982f036fbbb4b884ea04fe0ab27a33e3b38b.jpg

  • Xander Grishchenko

    Good luck! You helped to make BD an awesome place.

    • Thank you very much! I’m sure the crew will continue bringing everyone awesome content!

  • dangerzone79

    Thank you Jonathan. You reviewed the music video “6-17” that I wrote & directed for the band Asian She. And because of your article, we got a lot of attention for it. I will never forget that. I was hoping you’d be around when I direct my 1st film, but maybe you’ll be there in spirit. Good luck and thanks for all you’ve done for us.

    • That video was AWESOME! I’ll be keeping an eye out for what you’ve got coming up!

      • dangerzone79

        Means a lot. Thank you. And we’ll be keeping an eye out on what you do next as well.

  • Good luck Jonathan! I wish all the best for you!

  • lion7718

    Damn, now we’ll have to train another writer 😉
    Good Luck

  • DBZEROGRAVITY

    I love rock and metal music so I’ve read pretty much everything you’ve covered. Hate to see you’re moving on but good luck in your future endeavors!

    • Thanks so much! I’m always available on Twitter to chat music!

  • jasonlives1986

    Why are you leaving man?

    • It’s just time. The site is in amazing hands, so I go knowing that it will be just as incredible, if not more so, without me.

  • Good luck in your future endeavors and thanks for the hard work put into this site. This has been my main “horror” site for a few years now and the work from everybody is appreciated.

    • Thanks very much! Please keep making it your main site as the people still working here put their hearts and souls into everything they do.

      • Oh I definitely will. It’s been a great source for discovering new horror movies and shows. I’m on here daily. 🙂

  • NixEclips

    Well, Barkan, it’s been interesting. I’ll remember you for introducing me to new music and stalking you from article to article trying to find out your source for a rare behind the scenes pic from Frankenheimer’s Prophecy. That source was “I don’t know. I found it on the internet, somewhere”.
    Be well.

    • My Google Image Search-fu is strong, I will admit. Now, if only those places would give a source where THEY found it…

      • NixEclips

        I figured it out. Famous Monsters, I believe. I’m compiling the stalking as a gift for you.

      • NixEclips

        I may have missed some, but it went something like this:

        ‘Prophecy’ (Not That One) is Free to Stream Online

        NixEclips • 7 months ago

        Hey, where is that pic from? I don’t remember seeing that in the movie. And that was one of the earliest vhs tapes we watched over and over, cuz there weren’t a lot to choose from.

        H.R. Giger And His Influence On Classic Video Games

        NixEclips • 7 months ago

        How about this one?
        (Also, we didn’t hear from you at the Prophecy article. Where was that pic from?

        Scream! Factory Announces ‘The Thing’ Collector’s Edition!

        NixEclips • 7 months ago

        This is great news. But, dammit, WHERE DID THAT PIC FROM PROPHECY COME FROM? I need an answer. This agression will not stand, man.

        H.R. Giger And His Influence On Classic Video Games

        JonathanBarkan Mod • 7 months ago

        Sorry everyone for saying he was Swedish when he’s actually Swiss. Been blasting a lot of Swedish death metal as of late and it got to my head! Very sorry about that!

        NixEclips • 7 months ago

        Dammit, Barkan. Where did that pic from Prophecy come from? Seriously.

        JonathanBarkan Mod • 7 months ago

        Google Image Search, haha!

  • Mightygil

    All the best to you in the future Jonathan and thank you for all that you have contributed to us over the past seven years

  • CB Punk

    Good luck on whatever the great abyss known as planet earth has in store of you. You were my favorite writers around here well besides Trace, I think. And just for future reference no we most likely will not take it easy on Brad.

    • That means a great deal! Trace is fantastic, so to be held to his level is quite humbling! And regarding Brad, just try. No point going through life holding a grudge or looking to get angry at someone. There’s far more in life to enjoy than there is to hate.

      • CB Punk

        I can’t promise I can try but I can try to try.

  • c-s-a78

    cheers for the many years of stories we have all read. I have been here from the beginning. Good luck with your new beginnings.

  • Flu-Like Symptoms

    I’ll always remember you as the guy who once politely invited me to suck on your nipple, for no apparent reason, and is something I still don’t quite understand. That aside, I generally don’t form specific identities for the writers here, but I remember your stuff being cool and expressed with an open point of view, which to me is always key to appealing to a wide range of readers. Good luck with whatever you decide to pursue in the future.

    • I did that? I mean, it kinda makes sense, knowing myself…

      Regardless, thank you for the kind words!

  • Hockey Machete

    We never spoke but I wish you the best and I thank you for all you’ve done with making the experience on this site a thrill to have.

  • J Jett

    Jonathan, you’ve ALWAYS been a friendly, fun guy to talk to in the comments sections. i’m sorry you’re leaving (that’s me being selfish!) but i’m happy if you’re leaving/moving on is a good thing for you and will make you happy/happier. 🙂
    i know it’s none of my business but are you still going to be writing/reviewing at your next gig or sometime down the road? either way, you will be missed here and good luck to you! 🙂

    also i very much appreciate that BD/Brad/Tom and you had this public goodbye letter/article for us readers who are grateful to have the chance to say our goodbyes to you. i hope that the other writers working on BD will also (IF and when they ever decide to move on from BD) write a public goodbye letter like this so we can say our goodbyes. i know i’m forgetting the names of some BD writers (sorry to those guys) but if/when Trace and John Squires, etc., etc. decide to leave i would like to have an opportunity to say goodbyes (like this article afforded us).

    • I loved interacting with everyone in the comments because you all supported us and what we did! As for what’s next for me, that’s still in the works. I’ll be announcing the next step in my journey on Twitter, so that’s probably the best place to know what’s gonna happen with me. And I am deeply grateful to Brad and Tom for letting this go up. It was an incredibly emotional piece for me to write but it was important for me and, as you write, it’s important for all of you. I’m happy that it gives a sense of closure, as not having that is a terrible feeling.

  • PsychoMantis18

    Bye-bye, JB. All the best.

    • Thanks! I know we didn’t always get along but I loved that we could chat respectfully over the years!

  • James Allard

    From the back of Ziggy Stardust: To be played at maximum volume.

    Carry on!

  • MacReady

    Good luck man. Always enjoyed your articles.

  • Blade4693

    Damn man sad to see you go. It’s a shame you guys didn’t do another twitch stream that was fun back in October when you guys were doing it when the community could interact with you guys.

    Anyway, best of luck to you man, I wish you the best!

  • Halloween_Vic

    Best wishes and nothing but positive vibes your way man. To another successful and awesome journey bro!!

  • Brian VonDerahe

    Best of luck in your next adventure. I really enjoyed your work over the years! Thank you!

  • Are you writing somewhere else or simply done with this type of job?

    • Not sure yet. The only thing on my mind right now is to take a few days off and play with my puppy. After that, it’s a delightful mystery!

  • zombie84_41

    Hey John thank you for all the years, of writing, and telling me about some good music and movies, (I found some solid bands because of you) hell even video games. I wish you the best of luck in all you do. Do you have a personal FB so we can always stay in touch too?

    • So, I actually stopped checking Facebook a few months ago, so Twitter is the best way to stay in touch with me. But no matter what, thank you for the support over the years! It means a great deal!

      • zombie84_41

        Ok dude I’ll add you on twitter, I’m hardly on FB anymore either lol. And you welcome, thank you for all the great articles once again that you posted through out the years.

  • Df

    Good, means less lame stories that have nothing to do with horror.

    Now if you guys can get rid of whoever writes those stupid posts about fan fiction relating to movies and shows, glowing about mediocre fan art, stop posting breaking news about a blu ray coming that’s been up for pre order for 6 months on amazon, saying everything is exclusive, and cut back the God awful spam ads the site might be worth a shit again.

    • Happy New Year! Thanks for reading my stuff over the years!

  • Good luck for the future! I enjoy your articles and comments, will be a shame to see you go

  • nowaygetreal

    Jonathan, you are the writer this site needs. Not the writer this site deserves.
    Best of luck in your future..

  • Satanzilla

    I doubt that a single person here hates Brad. We love his site or we would not come here and visit. It’s just that people express themselves very frankly online because there are no adverse social consequences and if he engages in logrolling for something most of us think is terrible, like Blair Witch, people will definitely grumble! In no uncertain terms.

    But hate is a very strong word. I don’t even hate the trolls on BD like psoriasismantis18 — I just enjoy baiting them because it amuses me to rattle their cages when they’re out to rattle other people’s.

    Complain? Yes sometimes. Hate? Nope.

    • That’s very fair. In that case, continue disagreeing because that’s what these comments are for!

      • Satanzilla

        I think your input was useful though because we all need a reminder now and then not to go overboard with the bitching. I mean, it’s all just a bit of fun — movies, tv, games, music — it’s not life or death.

        • This is very true. You can absolutely be passionate about what you love so long as you realize that others are just as passionate…with potentially differing opinions.

  • Ima Badlady

    Best of luck to ya’!

  • All the best in your future endeavors Jonathan!

  • Tony Wash

    Best of luck brother. Good hanging and working with you! I know we’ll see each other again.

  • Wolf Kane

    Good Luck!

  • Sutter Cane

    First Adam vanishes and now Barkan is gone. Between these departures and some of the other sites undergoing massive overhauls (BMD comes to mind first and foremost, with Dread Central right behind), I’m interested to see what and who is left standing and what shape these sites will be in come the end of 2017.

    • ScriptGiverTJ

      Yeah it’s a sad state of affairs. There’s no good true horror news site anymore.

    • Putting my departure aside, supporting sites as I suggested above is the biggest and best way to help make sure they stick around. It may be annoying every once in a while if the ads suck/are obtrusive but it keeps the lights on and allows the writers to live. Until the model changes (and who knows how/when that will be), that’s really the only way to make sure BD is left standing at the end of 2017 and onwards.

  • joewaters

    Sad to see you go Jon. Best of luck to you

    • Don’t be sad, be excited for what BD has in store for the future and for what life will give to me! No matter what, thanks for the best wishes!

  • Cody Adams

    dude, you’re the man. congrats on a great run. loved reading your thoughts. peace, god bless

  • All the best Jonathan. Thanks for bringing the Metal.

    And kudos for pointing out just how important ad revenue is for any media site – I know from personal experience given I was retrenched from my last job (working on a media website) simply because advertising in media these days is damned hard.

    • My pleasure! And yeah, it’s rough how many people don’t understand how hard we work only to see people actively “support” us while not actually supporting us, y’know? We love that people read our stuff, we just wish they’d be okay with an ad or two being on the page so that we can get ours, haha!

  • CelticBull

    Good luck, mate, (almost) always enjoyed your content 😉

  • sliceanddice

    While i found myself disagreeing with you in large part, there was no denying the quality of your writing and the verve with which you wrote it. I look forward to more combative and challenging work coming from you in your new area of work.
    Best.

    • This is one of my favorite comments. Thanks for continuing to read me even though you didn’t agree with me. I truly appreciate it!

  • Otterlee

    You will be missed. Even when I disagreed with you, I was able to understand why you felt the way you did. You’ll be an asset to whoever harnesses your talents in the future.

  • Evan3

    Are you off to other endeavors? I truly enjoy your writing (indeed, you are one of the few internet writers whose name I have used brain space to memorize, Mr. Trace Thurman being another). I’d love to follow you to whence you go (or better yet, someday even write with you!).

    • Evan3

      Also, no more Twilight Zone reviews 🙁

      • Who knows what the future will bring? No matter what, it’ll be interesting times ahead, I’m sure of it!

  • GofC

    Thank you so much for your passionate goodbye. Although I’ve tried my best to stay silent over the years of visiting this fantastic site because I was a little scared of how horror fans can give strong opinions about anything, I guess now is the perfect time to give thanks to the content creators. From my former content creation experience, I’ve seen how you and your team have put so much effort in building this very tight-knit community that allows horror fans to endlessly preview new masterpiece and share their love for the underrated genre. Based on these movie trailers, graphic novels, and reviews, I can carefully choose what I research, read, watch in theater, or buy the disc copies for home entertainment. When certain films are not available in my country, at least I am excited about the new plots, Marcin’s Wrona’s Demon for instance, all because of your team effort in putting these quality words together.

    For some reasons, your name is definitely memorable since it’s mentally associated with the main character in Bram Stoker’s Dracula, Jonathan Harker, of course. Whatever your chosen path is in the future, keep enlightening us the readers with your insightful thoughts. Thx!

  • Thanks for featuring Graveyard Calling stuff! Felt really validating to have my little label featured on a big horror website. Mega appreciated the support. Good luck with whatever you’re going on to do in the future!

  • Niles Danish

    Best of luck in the future man! It’s always been great reading your material. If anyone is interested in visiting a cool site, with great reviews….check out this link. This and BD have been my go too’s everyday for years. https://thehorrorclub.blogspot.com/

  • Rob

    I don’t often post to comment boards, but I had to say thank you for all the great material! Nine times out of ten any article here that got my attention had your name underneath the title. Well done and good luck.

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