Practical effects maestro Greg Nicotero’s Creepshow continues to tell darkly entertaining tall tales of terror in this solid Season Two effort. While maybe not quite as good as the first season, the show brings in some great creative talent starring a whole graveyard of familiar genre faces. This Two-Disc release from RLJE sports an excellent A/V presentation for each episode. Bonus features are decent but nowhere near as impressive as the first season release. Still, if you’re a fan of the anthology format, it’s an entertaining run. Recommended
A horror-obsessed kid gets the ultimate revenge upon his abusive uncle. A pair of siblings open the ultimate Dead & Breakfast. A public television station accidentally reads from the wrong book live on air. A genius revolutionizes home entertainment - but at the cost of his marriage. These tall tales of betrayal, revenge, and terror are just some of the horrifying and hilarious experiences The Creep has in store for you this season.
Ever since the 1982 original film and the 1987 sequel, Creepshow has been a somewhat dividing presence in the horror anthology realm. Some folks love the inherent goofiness in recreating the E.C. comics experience while others are put off by the odd blend of less-than-serious horror with overt comedy. Admittedly as much as I love the first two films and this series so far, it can be an odd blend of horror and comedy without much cohesion from one story to the next. I like that most episodes of this show offer two different stories, but I kinda wish there was a little more thematic relevancy between them. Where you can get a great treat of a short story like “Dead and Breakfast” it’s followed up by “Pesticide” which started out well enough but fell apart at the end.
And like any anthology show of this sort, it’s not always perfect. Some stories go too far with their concept when they should have pulled back like “The Right Snuff,” or they didn’t take it far enough as was the case with the decent but clunky “Pipe Dreams.” Then you get episodes like the full-length “Night of the Living Late Show” which to me felt like one of the best callbacks worthy of the original Creepshow films. That’s to say nothing of “Public Television of the Dead” which was just a gas from start to finish. Again not perfect, but damn fun if you're in the right mood for it.
Vital Disc Stats: The Blu-ray
Creepshow Season 2 arrives on Blu-ray thanks to RLJE in a two-disc set. The discs come housed in a standard two-disc case with identical slipcover art and reversible insert artwork. Each disc loads to an animated main menu with traditional navigation options. All of the bonus features are found on disc two.
Digitally captured, Creepshow Season 2 once again gives a uniformly excellent video transfer for each episode. Each story aims to have a fairly unique visual feel so there are some extra filters and touches to make each story look a certain way. Some tricks can betray the visuals a little bit, but overall each episode offers vivid details, bright bold colors, with deep inky blacks for a strong three-dimensional presence to the image. Again a lot of the normal check marks for this show are on a case-by-case basis depending on the story there may be softer details, lighter black levels, or the appearance of heavier noise to simulate fake film grain or age anomalies like speckling. Since a lot of these artifacts aren’t uniform to each episode I have to assume it’s intentional. All around another great looking season.
As with the visuals, each episode of Creepshow Season 2 is handed an effective DTS-HD MA 5.1 track that is utilized differently for each story. Some episodes can sound a little more front/center focused with only some side/rear activity where something like “Public Television of the Dead” goes wall to wall with it. Uniformly speaking, the dialog is always clean and clear without issue. Scoring for each episode is dynamic and works to play up the horror or humor (or both) within each story and round out the soundscape.
The only disappointment I really have with this set is the step back on the bonus features compared to Season One. That set was stuffed to Gillman’s neck with great content. This one has some decent stuff that’s well worth checking out, but it’s not quite as in-depth or extensive. The Wondercon interview with Greg Nicotero is the most substantial of the bunch while the How It Was Made segment for "Night of the Living Late Show" was pretty cool to see how they made the episode - just wish there was more of that brand of bonus materials.
I wouldn’t call the Creepshow series perfect - but then I wouldn’t call Creepshow or Creepshow 2 perfect either. Like the films, there are some great stories and there are a couple of duds that just don’t live up to potential. All in all, I thought this second season was pretty entertaining, almost as good as the first. And so far from what I’ve watched of Season Three, this series still has some great scares and laughs to spread around.
Creepshow Season Two arrives on Blu-ray thanks to RLJE in a two-disc set featuring uniformly very good A/V presentations for each story. Depending on the story, one episode may look or sound different than the next but that’s okay since these visual and sonic qualities appear to be intentional. Bonus features are on the slim side but interesting enough to take a gander at. If you dig horror anthologies and generally enjoy what this show has to offer, Season Two is a worthy addition to the collection. Recommended