My new Halloween’s resolution is to check out Charles Schneeflock Snow’s site and his series-on-hiatus Sordid City Blues later tonight. I decided this after having read the first two chapters of his newest series Scar’s Kitchen. The series’ premise of The Devil hanging out in a restaurant is almost like a rejected TV concept from the 80’s (angels and ghosts were more acceptable back then) with a nineties Clerks style stream of dialogue (no insult intended, Snow’s is much tighter and punchier).
My only problem with this first chapter in the Scar’s Kitchen mini is the set up: A restaurant owner tries to sell his soul to Satan to save his failing business. His staff plays along and participates as a joke, but the ritual actually succeeds. Whoa. I’m sorry, but if a boss of mine was serious at all with this, my strategy would be to run andor call the police, not play along and further disturb his already precarious grip on life. Restaurants have too many knives to be a good playground for gaslighting someone.
But after the set up, it all works out and Nick (the name Old Scratch he actually goes by in the story) works his magic, gets the story and the characters in shape, and keeps things moving in style and with good humor. I will look for the next mini based on the last part of the first chapter and the entirety of the second. Additional props to Snow for both giving a convincing reason why no one’s soul is taken in the story and doing his best to anchor the real world portion of this tale with restaurant work terminology (even adding definitions at the end). As some know, I’m a fan of works that capture restaurant life. Adding Satan to a restaurant scenario seems a bit redundant, but it’s working for me so far.