Best Local YouTube Series - 2008
It was a sad day in 2006 when Cox Communications pulled the plug on the Valley's long-running public-access channel, Access Phoenix. Having been fans of such wacked-out shows as What's Up with Radical Mike and Samurai Sports, we were particularly bummed out by the move. That is, until we discovered YouTube. Then the online video service satisfied our yen for outrageous programming. Our most recent discovery is Satanic Views, a highly-entertaining "experimental no-budget variety show" created by Valley resident Damon Foster.
A longtime underground filmmaker (whose gonzo oeuvre includes flicks like Hot Dogs on the Run and Martyr X), Foster's created 13 episodes of the fierce-sounding series. Each edition features Foster and a cast of friends discussing the tenets behind worshipping the dark lord, as well as the occult and paganism. But as nefarious as it sounds, the series is filled with humor, high jinks, and Foster's hilarious views on politics and reviews of music and movies (he's a particular fan of cult Asian cinema). The dude also spends a portion of episodes chronicling his love of nature and animals.
Although he hung out a lot with the Anton LeVay crowd while living in San Francisco during his 30s, the 44-year-old admits he never was a real member of the Church of Satan. Instead, he was running with the devil "just to get chicks." And the whole Beelzebub bent of the program is something of a gimmick, as well as a conduit for shocking people and expressing his viewpoints in amusing fashion. "I'm not pro-occult or anything, just anti-religion," says the admitted atheist. "It's just a way of having fun." The devil you say.