Back in the early 1980s, HBO ran this anthology series, wherein the denim-clad Page Fletcher does the Rod Serling thing, introducing and concluding each dark morality tale. Though the stories varied (in content as well as quality), certain factors remained the same: you could always count on at least one sex scene, plus some dollops of gore. This was, in sum, The Twilight Zone with extra violence and cable-friendly T&A. As far as horror goes, there is nothing very groundbreaking here,…but these are amusing enough in half-hour chunks. Some of the stars to parade through these episodes include Kirstie Alley, Harry Hamlin, Virginia Madsen, Jerry Orbach and Gene Simmons.
The opening titles might lead you to think the 2.0 status is, in fact, mono. However, once we move into the meat of the stories, we do have actual surround. There is a decent use of this option for the music cues, but don’t expect much by way of sound effects. The dialogue is free of distortion.
The sound may be unspectacular, but it gets the job done. The same cannot be said for the picture, which varies from the just adequate to the out-and-out lousy. The colours are acceptable, but the grain is atrocious. The picture often looks as if it’s being viewed through a filter of cheesecloth.
Two of the episodes have commentaires. “True Believer” has director Carl Schenkel reminiscing (and he remembers the circumstances surround the shoot in quite vivid detail), and “The Curse” has director Phillip Noyce and Harry Hamlin on board. Though these two do cover a fair bit about the episode, they also wander into completely tangential subjects. The menu is basic.
Something of a nostalgic exercise now (boy, do I feel old), this is still a little slice of genre history, however minor.
Special Features List
- Audio Commentaries