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Saturday, October 19, 2013

CREEPSHOW 2 (Blu-ray) - 3 Stories, 1 Wrap Around, No Extras


The Creepshow franchise has had a bad run of it. So much so that it’s difficult to actually refer to the trilogy as a franchise proper. George Romero and Stephen King start the whole thing up in 1982 with five brilliant stories and a terrific wrap piece based on the EC Comics of yesteryear including a multi-story format, comic book insert transitions and stunning colorful visuals ala comic book panels. The actors are solid. The gore is Savini. The music is John Harrison and library music (brilliance meets classic scary). The result is a campy, gory, funny and disturbing piece of horror history that helped to bring about a the Tales from the Darkside television show and breathed new live into horror anthologies throughout the 1980’s (though some might say to the portmanteau’s ultimate detriment). Creepshow has suffered through some lackluster releases on digital formats with sparse extras and minimal content to provide the true fan experience from the disc. It’s getting better each release, but this seems like no brainer for such a popular release.

Maybe the bar was set too damn high. I’m as big a fan of the Tales from the Darkside series including movie as much as anyone, but the show didn’t live up to the promise of Creepshow. Creepshow 2 comes about in 1987 under the directorial effort of Michael Gornick who was working on episodes of Tales from Darkside. That’s actually the movie we’re here to discuss today, Creepshow 2 and its release on Blu-ray. Let’s finish out the franchise history before we get creepie with the second show.

See How Easy It Is To Find a Trailer

Creepshow 3 comes out in 2006/2007. It is shit. It is undeserving of the Creepshow title. Tom Savini, effects man and actor in the first two franchise films, refers to the Tales from the Darkside movie as the third installment, and I’ll stand by him on that. When a new Creepshow is inevitably made, I’ll hopefully refer to that as Creepshow 3 and forget the abomination that is the current Taurus Entertainment release ever existed. I want to sit down and talk to those guys some day and find out why they decided to sandbag a sequel. With a fan base loyal enough to make them very wealthy if only they could have delivered a proper release, why did they treat us like assholes? I may shake them until their brains puddle up and ooze through their head orifices. Let’s get back to Creepshow 2 before I get angry. Final note: If Creepshow 3 never sees a new digital format release I will be a happier horror fan for it. If they do release it, I’m going to review it. You’ll want to read that review as I’ll become a master wordsmith in the art of debauch and destructive verbiage.

Now THIS is a cover
Creepshow 2 is out on Blu-ray now, and I can tell you that it officially looks beautiful. It sounds like you want it to sound. When you stair at the screen during the Old Chief Woodenhead story, you’ll be amazed at what you’ll actually see in the scenery behind the mercantile. Look for and take in everything you can. The night scenes during The Raft are the greatest improved shots in the whole release. You can actually see what’s happening. This scene has been appropriately preserved but is so clear that the muddied previous releases look like TV recording jobs circa 1988. I should know. I used to have said recording on VHS.

The content is must own because the stories are damn good; Each story preserved with care and told in kind with the original story line format. These are thoughtful, moral tales that shock and warm your heart… or warn your heart. I’ve never liked the way Savini portrayed the Creep in look or voiceover and feel that it completely detracts from the wrap story that is otherwise good, filthy comic book fun. You’d think someone would’ve fixed the terrible, unsynced voiceover by now. It can’t be that hard. I love each story individually, and will support and defend nearly the entire picture.

The original logo as it was intended
I really want to give this release a shining review, and for two reasons I won’t. Again, the content and quality of the release are superb. That’s not where the fault lies. There are no extras features. Not one. No commentary track. No trailer. No Stills. Nothing. Big problem here for a fan of the series and this installment. That’s my big beef. The menu is lazy focusing on a redone Creepshow 2 logo as the only visual. The new logo looks like shit. No two ways about it. I could’ve designed it in Photoshop. Why deviate from the original, successful logo that had comic book perfection written all over it. I’m glad it’s in my collection because it deserves to look this good, but maybe I’ll just cut a VHS copy of Creepshow 2 and throw it in a Blu-ray sleeve. Horror fans don’t like when distro companies destroy good artwork. Those are my gripes and I’ll overlook them because I love this movie and the movie looks so purty. In all fairness, this logo appears on the previous DVD release of Creepshow 2 as well, so really this is a gripe too late. No extras? That’s lazy guys. If fans know this disc has extras, they’ll be more apt to replace their DVD.

By the by, the Tales from the Darkside movie is out on DVD. Maybe while you’re replacing the cover for this release of Creepshow 2 with a fan friendly version you can write Creepshow 3 across the cover of Tales from the Darkside release and throw an EC Comic in the box.

You can pick up this release NOW. Your Blu-ray player may just thank you for the ride, lady.

-Dr. TERROR

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