Creepshow on Shudder is some of the best horror anthology that you can get. The stories range from reaching into the past to bring up nostalgic memories of horror past, to contemporary stories with a new twist. This week’s episodes “The Right Snuff” and “Sibling Rivalry” both have themes that you’ll recognize from horror, one just does it better than the other. We’ll take both parts separately here, so let’s start off with “The Right Snuff”.
“The Right Snuff” Gives Full Creepshow Vibes
It’s obviously a riff on The Right Stuff and boy does it feel like a classic story. “The Right Snuff” stars Breckin Meyer (who must be drinking the same stuff that Keanu Reeves and Paul Rudd are, because he doesn’t age) and Ryan Kwanten as Alex. The episode starts off with a collision course for the ship that they’re on. Just when you think this is going to be a gore-fest with aliens attacking, the shop they’re on course with disappears. It’s clear from the interview that they make that Alex is incredibly jealous of Ted. Ted gets the accolades for a new gravity disruptor that could revolutionize how we do work on Earth. Under the surface, Alex is fuming however.
Only until later in the episode do you get the full Creepshow experience, but this one has fantastic writing, and even better performances from it’s two leads. It also stars Gabrielle Byndloss and Kara Kimmer as a reporter and the lead contact that they have on Earth. Joe Lynch directed and Paul Dini and Stephen Langford wrote the episode. Their work shows up in the final product with a well-written and directed section of episode three.
Stick Around For The Conclusion
The conclusion is pure horror goodness with the misdeeds on display in the episode paying off, explosively. The climactic scene featuring Meyer and Kwanten shows that Kwanten could very easily fit into the role of a slasher or crazed maniac in future horror films. Meyer is fantastic as the relatable hero that’s just trying to do the best for everyone. This might be my favorite section of Creepshow so far, but the “Public Television Of The Dead” section from episode one gives it a run for it’s money.
This episode combines the best of The Twilight Zone and Creepshow to put it directly.
“Sibling Rivalry” Falls A Bit Short Of The First Section Of Creepshow
Now for “Sibling Rivalry”. This episode missed the mark for me by a bit. It’s directed by Rusty Cundieff and written by Melanie Dale. It stars Maddie Nichols, Molly Ringwald, Andrew Brodeur, Ja’Ness Tate, and Jerri Tubbs. Up until the big reveal of the episode, it’s a very goofy, teenage vibe to the whole episode. It starts off with Lola (played by Nichols) telling her Guidance Counselor (Molly Ringwald) that her brother is trying to kill her. Through the inner workings of a teenage girl, we’re given quick cuts, diversions, and lots of extra stuff that doesn’t have to do with the story. This isn’t a bad thing, after all, it is a teenage girl telling the story.
It definitely is an episode for younger viewers to get into Creepshow if you want to show them. Teenagers will feel right at home with this setup. It’s not your classic Creepshow vibe like the past two and a half episodes have been. It opens up the show for a new audience, and while it doesn’t work as well, it would work for that audience.
Small Complaints Stack Up
The only things that I can really complain about are the use of CGI in the episode’s latter stages and the somewhat strange dynamic between brother and sister that we have in the episode. It does feel very much like a brother and sister arguing, but then it ranges into a stranger territory.
All in all, it’s not a terrible episode, certainly not the worst they’ve produced for the show, it just wasn’t really for me.
The performances in the episode are very well done though, Maddie Nichols gives Lola a frenetic energy that is fitting of a teenage girl. Ringwald does a good job of grounding the story back in reality up until the end. For the small time he’s in the episode, Brodeur gives a fine performance.
Creepshow airs each Thursday on Shudder at 9:00pm ET/6:00pm PT.
Who knows where The Creep takes us next?
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