It's Time, My Dear Readers, For Me to Say Goodbye - Bloody Disgusting
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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.

Jonathan Barkan