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TALES FROM THE CRYPT

Posted by Brad Schelden, July 26, 2007 08:53pm | Post a Comment
Tales From the Crypt. Do you remember that show? I sure do. This was before HBO became the best place to watch television shows. But they still had some good programming. Long before we were all addicted to Six Feet Under and The Sopranos. Tales From the Crypt ran on HBO from 1989-1996. The show would have probably not survived and for sure not been as good if it were just on regular network television. Shows like the Twilight Zone were able to still be amazing on network TV without showing any nudity or graphic violence. But these were different times. We were all accustomed to seeing a lot of blood and violence with our horror at this point. And HBO could get away with that. The great thing about this show was its guest stars. Each episode had a new batch of guest stars. So it sort of was like "The Twilight Zone" or "Alfred Hitchcock Presents" of the early 90's. I tried to watch the show whenever I got a chance. But I have started collecting the DVD's since they started coming out in 2005. Season 6 was just released this week. And the final season comes out October 23rd.

I am not sure where my fascination with horror came from. It probably started before 1989. But this show definitely helped to cement it into my consciousness. I remember the excitement I would feel whenever I could catch an episode. The opening sequence really set up the show every evening. The Cryptkeeper was sort of the Rod Serling of the show. Maybe Rod Serling mixed with Sophia from the Golden Girls. He used a lot of those horrible jokes and puns we have all heard a million times. He was basically a sickly little skeleton voiced by  Josh Kassir. Josh has done a ton of voiceover work. But this was his shining moment. He also did the voice for the cartoon "Tales from the Cryptkeeper" which was on from 1993-1997.

The show was based on the 1950's comic book. So the show sort of had a comic book sort of feel to it. There was actually a british show in the 70's starring Joan Collins with the same name. So HBO was not the first. The episodes were directed by many different directors. The brilliant Walter Hill actually directed the first episode. The show featured directors Robert Zemeckis(Back to the Future) , Richard Donner (The Omen/Goonies/Superman II), Walter Hill(The Warriors/Streets of Fire), Howard Deutch(Pretty in Pink/Some Kind of Wonderful),  Tom Holland(Fright Night/Child's Play), Rodman Flender(Leprechaun 2), and Arnold Schwarzenegger. They are actually working on a remake of "The Warriors." I am hoping it will be at least entertaining.

The show starred such actors as Bob Goldthwait, Lea Thompson, Amanda Plummer, Demi Moore, Sam Kinison, Patricia Arquette, Michael J. Fox, Patricia Clarkson, Beau Bridges, Jon Lovitz, Whoopi Goldberg, Steve Buscemi, Brad Pitt, Zelda Rubinstein, and a whole bunch of people who you would recognize even if you didn't necessarily know their name. It is nice to have these in a nice little DVD box. This is the kind of show that is nice to watch right before you go to sleep. I also just found out they have been showing it on the new cable station "Chiller." So far this station is only carried by DirectTV. Their slogan is "Dare to Watch." Seems like the perfect home for a show like Tales From the Crypt.


Here is a video clip of the Tales From the Crypt intro...


 

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