A year after HBO ended Tales from the Crypt they decided to do another anthology show, this time another anthology show based on EC comics like before. But instead of the old horror EC comics it was the science fiction EC comics and the show was called “Perversions of Science” and was hosted by a badly CGI rendered overtly sexual female robot. Naturally the show only lasted one season and though the show was mostly sci-fi there was one particularly fun Halloween centered period piece episode called “Panic”.
In the 1930’s “Carson Wells” played by Chris Sarandon (you should know who that is) is planning a radio play broadcast for Halloween that he says will be very big. If you know your history you will know it is the infamous War of the worlds broadcast that panicked the nation. along with “Carson Wells” planning the broadcast there are two young college friends played by Jaimie Kennedy and Jason Lee who are planning a halloween party for there friends. Half way through the Halloween party the infamous war of the worlds broadcast plays on the radio and makes everyone scared and concerned, Then both Jason Lee and Jaimie Kennedy’s start murdering all the party goers! and it is soon revealed that there both Martians themselves who have been convinced that “the invasion” has started without them from the fake War of the Worlds Broadcast, needless to say “Panic” and hilarity ensue for our two Martians.
“Panic” is an episode that boasts some good talent both in front of the camera and behind it. Jason Lee and Jaimie Kennedy have a great time as two martians cursing at each other and panicking over the rake radio broadcast and the dialogue between the two is humorous and Energetic. Chris Sarandon nails it as the Orson Wells homage character and Texas Chainsaw director Tobe Hoober directs with a fun and energetic tone to it all. And finally the Halloween party massacre scene is so unexpected yet fun and goofy that it takes you off guard but really puts a smile on your face and one can tell that Jason Lee and Jamie Kennedy were having a blast during that scene.
So if your in the mood for halloween centered “Terror TV” but want something really obscure and forgotten but still alot of fun. Seek out the Perversions of Science episode “Panic” right here on youtube because sadly it was never released on Dvd here in the states. – James J. Coker