In 1982, horror-meister Stephen King made his film screenwriting debut for director George Romero’s full-length horror comedy anthology movie, Creepshow. While the film was an homage to 1950’s EC horror comic books like Tales from the Crypt, two of the five vignettes were based on King’s short stories. The movie was a huge hit and spawned an equally successful sequel and now a spectacular new TV series.
Creepshow, the anthology TV series, began airing Thursday, September 26, 2019, on Shudder TV–AMC’s premier streaming service. Anthologies are series in which the stories are usually unrelated in both plot and cast but they share a similar underlying theme—in this case, it is horror. Season One of the series will feature six episodes with two stories per episode. And it began with a bang.
Each story opens with a clever comic book intro that leads into a live action tale of terror. The series opened with Gray Matter, a gruesome Stephen King story that was published in his 1978 collection, Night Shift. Directed by the series showrunner Greg Nicotero, Gray Matter grabs the audience in the opening scene as a young boy escapes to the sanctuary of sympathetic neighbors to reveal the unimaginable woes he’s endured after living with a grieving father whose devastating drinking problem knows no bounds. Adrienne Barbeau, who appeared in the original Creepshow film, returns to the scene of the crime…and may wish she hadn’t. The episode also features Tobin Bell and Giancarlo Esposito.
The second tale is entitled The House of the Head, written by Josh Malerman and directed by John Harrison. The story involves a young girl whose delight with her new dollhouse soon turns to terror when she discovers a strange severed toy head inside that has become the dollhouse’s uninvited resident. Cailey Fleming is sensational as the young mistress of the mini-mansion in her bedroom and Rachel Hendrix and David Shae are sufficiently clueless as her unsuspecting parents.
Creepshow had me shuddering under the covers when I went to sleep after watching the first episode, so I would say it’s worth a viewing!