5 TV Terrors for you Halloween !

ITS THE HALLOWEEN SEASON HORRORFIENDS!!

so before the big night happens. Here is 5 episodes from Horror anthology shows that are perfect for the Halloween season.

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TERROR TV FOR HALLOWEEN – TALES FROM THE DARKSIDE – Inside the Closet

02 Inside the Closet.avi_001128094The 1980’s anthology show TALES FROM THE DARKSIDE had a number of good and memorable episodes. One episode that is well remembered and is actually in IMDB’s top three episodes of the whole series!! is an episode about a girl haunted by some little creature inside her closet. An episode that can terrify children who dare watch this one. For children can be afraid of what goes bump in the closet and this Tales from the Darkside episode will only further cement that fear to terrifying new heights…Perfect to scare the shit out of little ones for the Halloween season muhahahahaha!!!

from IMDB : What is scurrying around inside the closet of the upstairs room that grad student Gail Aynsley rents from veterinary school dean Dr. Fenner? Gail doesn’t know, but she is determined to find out and Dr Fenner isn’t telling.

now “Inside the Closet” is not only one of the best Tales from the Darkside episodes ever but one of the best moments of horror on Television ever! the way one remembers the creepy build up to a terrifying conclusion on there favorite Twillight zone or tales from the Crypt episode is the way “Inside the Closet” is remembered. Actress Roberta Weiss plays her character perfectly as that very innocent girl who is away from home for the first that and all those uncomfortable feelings that go with that, the episode really plays on that by making the one room setting almost feel like a character in its self. Not only is Roberta Weiss and the room itself the high points but the direction by Tom Savini…yes that Tom Savini is superb with Tom making excellent use of lighting and shadows not to show the monster just yet but to build up the creepiness slowly until the end.

But all in all the two best aspects of the episode is the build up in which both our poor character and you are slowly wondering what could be hiding in her room while the slow subtle creep factor builds and buils upon the viewer and secondly all the creepy slow build all comes to a terrifying conclusion when we finally see the thing haunting Gail and it is a strong “WHOA!” factor from adult viewers and from children viewers (if they see it) it can be fucking terrorizing! i mean look at the pic that goes along with this review…if I saw this episode when i was very little i would not of been able to sleep for a week.

So this Halloween season if you want to add to your halloween viewing schedule something quick yet has a good creep factor, great buildup and some terrifying little monster. Seek out the Tales from the Darkside episode “INSIDE THE CLOSET” and make sure no little children watch with you muhahahahaha! – James J. Coker

TERROR TV – TALES FROM THE DARKSIDE – No Strings

07 No Strings.avi_000788095Whenever horror fans bring up the topic of the 80’s horror anthology show Tales From the darkside, they mostly bring up the classic episodes like “halloween Candy” or “inside the Closet” and hardly every mention the series one killer puppet episode, that episode is called “No Strings” an episode of the darkside that needs more mentioning among Tales from the Darkside fans

Mobster Eddie Minelli plans a private performance by a famous puppeteer, but with a ghoulish new puppet: the bloody remains of Don Paulie, the man Eddie has just murdered.

now its a darn shame that darkside fans dont mention this episode. its quite good for what it is. The performances are all good, there is actually a tiny bit of gore in it, rather creepy and well done carnival-esque music to it, a classic comeuppance for mobster Eddie and a statement made by the puppeteer about the connection between the puppet and the puppeteer and the power making people feel through performance. Also to note the whole episode has this dark and macabre tone throughout even more so then other tales from the darkside episode. So if you want to visit the old 1980s show but want a rather obscure episode then look into No Strings. – James J. Coker

TERROR TV-TALES FROM THE DARKSIDE-The Yattering and Jack

TalesDarkside4Film is not the only medium to adapt the work of Clive Barker. In this entry I’m going to take a look at the 1987 “Tales from the Darkside” episode The Yattering and Jack, an adaptation of Barker’s short story of the same name. While not the most famous episode of the series it’s a very unique one. Barker wrote the episode and while it’s different from the original story, it’s still a great episode with a unique plot and is very funny. However by no means is this a comedy.

The episode tells the story of Jack Pollo, an average ordinary guy. A demon known as The Yattering has been sent by the forces of Hell to drive Jack insane and take his soul. If he does not accomplish this he becomes Jack’s slave. There are rules The Yattering must follow to achieve this task: such as he is not allowed to touch Jack. He tries mischievous things, such as making messes or boiling the water in Jack’s fishbowl, however he is unable to make Jack snap. This drives The Yattering mad and he is the one starting to go crazy. However Jack’s daughter has come to visit him on Chrstmas and The Yattering has an epic plan which he hopes will finally cause Jack to snap.

As I mentioned earlier this episode is quite different from its source material. The short story was vulgar, violent and brutal while this episode is not that at all. The story also goes into more depth as to why The Yattering is there to torment Jack, while the episode skips over those details. I could spoil it for you but I think you should go ahead and read the short story. If you are really curious though I will provide that information at the bottom of this post. It’s a fairly accurate adaptation of the story, just stripped of all its extreme parts. A great episode with a unique plot and a good sense of humor.

If you enjoy the work of Clive Barker or just want a unique piece of short horror then I highly recommend checking out this “Tales from the Darkside” episode.

SPOILER ALERT: In the short story the reason the forces of Hell want Jack’s soul was because his mother made a deal with the forces of Hell for her soul. However she double crossed them, died in the arms of a preacher and went to heaven. To compensate for their loss they want to take her son’s soul (Jack Pollo) so they send an inexperienced young demon to do the job of driving Jack to insanity.

-Dakota Bailey

HIDDEN HORROR-Tales from the Darkside: The Movie

tales-from-the-darkside-the-movie-movie-poster-1990-1020244031“Tales from the Darkside: The Movie” is a 1990 American anthology horror film directed by John Harrison. It it based on the ‘80s anthology horror TV series of the same name. While known in the horror community it gets overlooked by your average movie goer, and that is a shame because this film is a gem. I first saw it when I was seven and it helped me get hooked on horror, and I’m sure there are other horror fanatics that can say the same.

Since this is an anthology film there are three stories and a framing device. Let’s talk about the framing device first. Blondie’s Debby Harry plays Betty, a suburban housewife and modern day witch who is planning a dinner party. What is she cooking? Human child of course. Earlier in the day she captured a young boy named Timmy. To stall for time Timmy decides to tell her some stories from the book “Tales from the Darkside.”

The first true segment is “Lot 249”, which is inspired by the Sir Arthur Conan Doyle short story “Lot No. 249.” Steve Buscemi plays a graduate student and antique collector who gets his hands on a mummy. He brings it back to life, by using a scroll found in the mummy’s sarcophagus, and uses it to get revenge on some fellow students who have wronged him. Imagine Boris Karloff’s “The Mummy” mixed with a Lucio Fulci film and this is what you get. A very gory and very entertaining segment. Horror fans will love it.

Next segment is “Cat from Hell,” which is written by George Romero and based off the Stephen King story of the same name. This one is dark, brutal but intelligent at the same time. A hit man, played by David Johansen of the New York Dolls, is hired by a wealthy, wheelchair bound old man, played by William Hickey. However the old man does not want him to kill a person, but rather a black cat. According to the old man the cat just showed up at his mansion one day and his other family members that lived there started dying of mysterious circumstance. The old man was once the owner of a pharmaceutical company that tested its products on cats, killing thousands in the process. He believes the cat is some sort of supernatural being that is there to punish him for what he had done.

The hit man thinks the old man is crazy but he kills the cat anyways, only to be taught a brutal and powerful lesson. A very brutal, very gory tale that goes to show what goes around comes around. The ending is very powerful and has stuck with me since I first saw this movie as a child. Only Stephen King could have come up with a story like this. However it is interesting to note that King’s story ends differently than this one does.

Last is the best and most powerful segment “Lovers Vow.” It tells the story of a down-on-his luck New York City artist named Preston, played by James Remar. One day Preston looses everything and goes to a bar to drink his trouble’s away. The bar closes and he and the bartender go outback to lock up for the night. Suddenly, a gargoyle comes out and brutally murders the bartender. The gargoyle spares Preston’s life and says that if Preston ever tells anybody about what he saw, he will come back and kill him. Present then meets a mysterious woman, his luck begins to turn around and he becomes extremely successful. I don’t want to go into any more details about the story but I will say the ending will haunt you as it is powerful and quite sad.

The special effects in this segment are great. The gargoyle looks very life like, slimy and hideous. There is also plenty of atmosphere, creepy moments and lots and lots of gore.

A fantastic movie and one that I can’t recommend enough. You just have to watch it to see how great it truly is. While it shares the same name as the anthology series the movie is quite different from the show in terms of the content. The show was creepy but never violent or gory. The movie on the other hand has a lot of gore, making it more similar to another anthology film “Creepshow.”

Speaking of “Creepshow,” according to Tom Savini this is the real “Creepshow 3,” not that piece of crap movie that has nothing to do with George Romero or Stephen King. “Creepshow 3” is a piece of shit and all copies of it should be burned.

Mainstream critics seem not to like this film and that is messed up as it is a great fucking movie. What I like about the film is that you can watch as it either three R-rated “Tales from the Darkside” episodes or you can watch it as the true “Creepshow 3.” I believe this film deserves a spot in the collection of any horror enthusiasts. I have had it in my collection forever and everyone in a while I pop it out and give it a watch. Chances are, you will too after watching it.

-Dakota Bailey

12 SLAYS OF CHRISTMAS – TERROR TV – TALES FROM THE DARKSIDE – Seasons of Belief

grither1For our very first “12 Slays of Christmas” review I thought I would look into a Christmas episode of the anthology series “Tales from the Darkside.” I found the episode Seasons of Belief and boy is this a fun and atmospheric one.

Seasons of Belief concerns a father on Christmas Eve who ends his two children’s boredom by telling them a scary story about a fearsome Christmas Eve beast known as the Grither. This creature searches and attacks all those who dare say his name out loud.

What works so well for this seasonal episode is that not only is it ripe with cheery Christmas atmosphere but the tone is both fun and creepy. It’s fun because both the parents really get into scaring the shit out of their kids with the story and its creepy because there’s little moments that make you wonder whether the story is true or not…well until you get to the predictable yet still satisfying ending.

If you’re looking for some cheery yuletide Terror TV episodes then look no further then this episode of “Tales from the Darkside.”

-James J. Coker