Tales from the Crypt: And All Through the House
Released: June 10, 1989
Christmas TV Rewind Review
Director: Robert Zemeckis
Starring: John Kassir, Mary Ellen Trainor, Larry Drake, Marshall Bell, Lindsey Whitney Barry
This episode, as with much of this series, can be easily described to someone who has never seen it before in one sentence: Pure holiday ridiculousness. I remember reading the comic this is based on when I was little and being creeped out by it back then. But there’s nothing scarier than the live action version, directed by the now legendary Robert Zemeckis. But I’m getting ahead of myself.
In the tradition of the great old EC Comics tradition, this tale is expertly crafted, with plenty of twists and turns to keep the story going for the full half hour of the episode. We have an essentially simple plot (Remember, most of these were written in the 1950s) involving a woman who decides to murder her husband on Christmas Eve, with her daughter upstairs anxiously awaiting the arrival of Santa Claus. But, because this is a horror anthology, the writers couldn’t just leave it at that. No, the Santa that the little girl upstairs is so anxiously awaiting and ends up letting in after several failed attempts to enter the house isn’t Santa at all… It’s an axe-wielding escaped lunatic murderer who just happens to be dressed up as jolly old Saint Nick.
The last line, and only line from this imposter is simple, yet terrifying. He looks directly at the mother, a fellow murderer, as he raises his axe, and asks, “Naughty? Or nice?” This, of course, is followed by a bunch of screaming, as per usual. This series is such a fun interpretation of the comics, with each episode being book-ended by an introduction and conclusion from the Crypt Keeper himself, making puns so horrible, they’ll KILL you. Hahahahahaha! Sigh…
My Rating: 4/5