Weekend Planner: October 23–24, 2010
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Weekend Planner: October 23–24, 2010

Urban Planner is Torontoist’s guide to what’s on in Toronto, published every weekday morning, and in a weekend edition Friday afternoons. If you have an event you’d like considered, email all of its details—as well as images, if you’ve got any—to [email protected].

A shuffling snapshot from last year’s Zombie Walk. Photo by Miles Storey/Torontoist.

This weekend: Ghost Jail returns, Nerdgasm gets funny, John Waters talks sadism in film, puppets do battle, crowds do karaoke, and zombies march (and slowdance!).

BRAAAAINS: Halloween is nigh, and the time has come for Toronto’s undead to rise up and take to the streets, scaring the living daylights out of residents and tourists alike. The 2010 Toronto Zombie Walk will lead a procession of shambling corpses on a course through Trinity-Bellwoods, Kensington Market, the Annex, and Christie Pitts. Due to the epic growth of the walk—what began as seven zombie enthusiasts now includes thousands—the city is kindly requesting that participants register to help keep the mayhem organized. Also a first, this year the walk will have an honorary grand marshal: the frontsman of legendary horror-metal band Gwar, Oderus Urungus. Trinity-Bellwoods Park, Saturday 3 p.m., FREE.
COMEDY: Great news for geeks: comedy isn’t just for jocks and homecoming queens anymore! The people at Nerdgasm have made it their mission to marry comedy with nerd culture, apparently under some sort of presumption that the two were previously mutually exclusive. Headlining the self-titled nerd circus this weekend is comic Brian Posehn, whose distinct nasal monotone is instantly recognizable from The Sarah Silverman Program and Just Shoot Me! Part comedy and part convention, the event will include several vendor tables from across Toronto’s nerdscape, as well as an after party at which cosplaying is strongly encouraged. Toronto Underground Cinema (186 Spadina Avenue), Saturday 4 p.m., $27.50.
FILM: The Bell Lightbox continues its run of scintillating post-festival programming with a screening of Pier Paolo Pasolini’s Salò, based on the Marquis de Sade’s The 120 Days of Sodom, and considered one of the most shocking films of all time. If that weren’t enough of a draw, the ante is upped by the addition of the notorious John Waters, taking some time away from his commitments to the International Festival of Authors and the promotion of his new book Role Models. Bell Lightbox (350 King Street West), Saturday 8:30 p.m., $15–$18.75.
DANCE: The trendy two-steppers at Slowdancers of the World are getting into the holiday spirit with an undead version of their popular dance series: Slowdance Night of the Living Dead. Costumes of all sorts are encouraged, but a floor full of shuffling zombies is the ideal goal for this evening celebrating an almost lost dance form. Designated dancers will be on hand to fill dance cards, which are included with admission. Dovercourt House (805 Dovercourt Road), Saturday 9 p.m., $10.
WORDS: There are several reasons to check out Canzine this weekend—among them a book pitching panel, homemade video games, and a make-your-own-robot workshop—but two words rise above all the rest in terms of sheer appeal factor: Puppet Slam. Yes, five puppeteers will face off for the right to the title of champion in this no-holds-barred battle royale. Of course, if competitive marionettes isn’t your thing, there are also over one hundred zines from across Canada to check out at this celebration of alternative publishing culture. The Great Hall (1087 Queen Street West), Sunday 1 p.m.–7 p.m., $5 (includes copy of Broken Pencil).
COMEDY: One of Toronto’s best bets in improv comedy, Ghost Jail Theatre is back with a fourth season of their weekly show. Their opening night show—which you may recognize from some truly disconcerting face mashup posters around the Annex—will feature guest performers from PROJECTproject and the dulcet musical stylings of Alana Johnston. Clinton’s Tavern (693 Bloor Street West), Sunday 7:30 p.m., $5.
KARAOKE: If you’re a would-be crooner who’s just too intimidated by the spotlight of traditional karaoke, then what you need is Crowd Karaoke! The concept is simple: any attendees can add sounds to the collaborative playlist, then join the dance floor crowd in belting out lyrics as they’re projected above. Such freeform music promises to be as entertaining as it is cacophonous. Holy Oak Cafe (1241 Bloor Street West), Sunday 8 p.m., PWYC.