"Masters of Horror: Season
I'm really rather amazed
that I got the opportunity to watch this in the first place. Fewer
copies of season two were released than season one, and quite
possibly with good reason. Though there were other incentives
to pick up season two, the constant muttering of the fans had
some valid complaints.
The season two box
set is ironic, when you consider it fully. Yes, indeed, it comes
in an absolutely freaky case that looks like an exact replica
of a human skull. Pull off the top and an array of DVDs are found
within. But Masters of Horror season two is exactly like a real
human's head, and not just for the amazing skull case; it's a
masterfully designed casing holding a mix of the good and the
ill. Just like a real human head. I'm somewhat opposed to this,
however, as it required some titles to be double-packed on one
DVD--Family is the B-side of The Screwfly Solution's disk and
that's not a good thing.
Yes, the fans were
correct. Season two was quite a bit inferior to season one, but
it's crashingly unfair to say that season two was BAD. No, not
in the least--it wasn't bad at all. It just wasn't good compared
to the first. Why? Well, I'm going to put forth the suggestion
that it just averaged better. Strange thing to say, I know, but
look at season one--only Deer Woman and Chocolate were anything
less than good. And the best of season one--Pick Me Up, Homecoming,
and Cigarette Burns--were inspired masterworks of horror. Takashi
Miike put forth possibly the very first work of horror that Showtime
refused to show. The rest were at least good, and that makes a
pretty high plateau to achieve.
By comparison, there
are fewer high points and more low points to season two. I'm still
offended by the existence of The V Word--a VAMPIRE story? In Masters
of Horror? Honestly--surely masters of the art can do better than
rehash old mythoses into the modern era. Vampires are done and
to death--I'm sick of Lestat and his buddies mincing his way through
horror movies, and only slightly better are the coked-up madmen
of movies like 30 Days of Night. At least that's a bit original.
But even in this it was still a relatively successful film--just
because I'm not all that into vampire stories doesn't mean vampire
buffs won't enjoy it. Bringing in chronically ignored pulp-horror
figure Bentley Little for "The Washingtonians" was also
a good move that showed a commitment to at least try--when's the
last time you saw anything vaguely related to Bentley Little?
Yeah, I figured--like I said, chronically ignored. Do yourself
a favor--go out and read his book The Store and see if you can
look at a Wal-Mart the same way ever again.
And let's face the
unpleasant fact--season two lost a lot of its best masters and
was forced to turn to lesser masters. Here--see if you can appreciate
Season one originals
that left: Takashi Miike, Larry Cohen, Lucky McGee, Don Coscarelli,
William Malone, John McNaughton
Season two replacements:
Norio Tsuruta, Peter Medak, Tom Holland, Rob Schmidt, Brad Anderson,
Not to complain about
Norio Tsurata--he did Premonition, which was sweet. But let's
be honest here--which of these names will you more readily identify:
the replaced...or the replacements? Tom Holland did direct the
first Child's Play movie, but the last thing he directed was Thinner
back in 1996, and nothing after until 2007's We All Scream For
Ice Cream. Rob Schmidt may have directed Wrong Turn, but does
that REALLY qualify you for Masters of Horror status? I say it
ranks you for ASSHOLES of Horror status. How far down the ladder
were they willing to go? Charles Band? Uwe Boll? Ulli LOMMEL,
for crying out loud? Any one of them has directed more than THREE
TIMES the number of movies Rob Schmidt handled, but somehow Schmidt's
I'm calling shenanigans.
But anyway...it's like
I said. it wasn't that Masters of Horror season two was bad--say
what you will, but watching George Wendt pour acid over a corpse,
break for lunch, and then start talking to dressed skeletons in
"Family" just tickled me pink--it just wasn't as good
as season one. There is plenty to like about season two...and
here's the rundown:
The Screwfly Solution.
An amazing array of niftiness where the menfolk run as amok as
the womenfolk have always thought us capable of.
Jeffrey Combs in The
Black Cat. Jeffrey Combs has yet to turn in a bad performance,
and I will always--ALWAYS--give bonus points to anyone who brings
in this spectacularly effective actor.
Sounds Like. You've
got to love how there's a problem, and then its polar opposite
for a bit, and then right back to where it was.
All in all, Masters
of Horror season two may not have been as good as the first, but
there's still nothing really bad about it by a long shot.
of Horror: Season 2
out the Video Store Guy on his own ever-lovin' website.
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