[Editorial] Remember horror flash games!

Almost every horror anthology, whether it’s a movie or a TV series, has a gadget. Some are attached to certain authors for their source material (Roald Dahl’s Tales of the Unexpected, The Ray Bradbury Theater) while others are holiday-themed (Trick or treats, In the dark). The reasons are numerous. An anthology concept that stands out to date is the one that defines Showtime Masters of Horror. This two-season collection of stand-alone stories still haunts fans’ memories.

Masters of Horror, a Mick garris passion project inspired by a dinner for himself and his fellow horror writers, had a simple design; each episode was directed by a notable name in the horror genre: Dario Argento, Jean Charpentier, Joe dante, Stuart gordon, and Tobe Hooper to name a few.

With Masters of Horror now streaming in high definition on Screambox, now is the perfect time to revisit the series. And these five memorable episodes are a good place to start.

To print

Thanks to the J-horror wave of the 2000s, Takashi miike was increasingly recognized outside of Japan. The filmmaker was invited to Masters of Horror after notable praise for its existing production, including The Happiness of the Katakuris, Ichi the killer, and A missed call. Although his contribution, “To print“, was due to close the first season, Showtime ended up not showing it due to concerns about its content. Mastery was already taking full advantage of his license for gore and sex. So, the fact that “Imprint” was labeled as too disturbing speaks volumes.

In the episode of Miike, which takes place in the 19th century, an American (Billy Drago) visits Japan in search of his lost love, Komomo (Michie). After learning of her passing, another woman tells a story about the difficult fate that befell Komomo.

After seeing “Imprint,” it’s not hard to see why Showtime was so suspicious in the first place; it is the most graphic episode of the whole series. What he lacks in Miike’s typical dark intellect, he makes up for with total shock value and gruesome delicacies.


Dario Argento needs little introduction, and it was certainly a no-brainer to choose him as a director. Argento, however, didn’t write either of his two entries because the directors generally didn’t have a hand in the scripts. There were of course exceptions to the rule, but the manipulation “Jenifer”On paper was the episode’s own star, Steven weber. The story itself comes from the mind of Bruce jones.

In “Jenifer”, a disgruntled cop (Weber) stumbles upon a man trying to kill the episode’s namesake (Carrie Anne Flemish). He saves her only to then discover that she is unlike any other woman he has ever met. The cop soon falls in love with Jenifer and begins to want to touch her. Unfortunately for him and those who come in contact, Jenifer also has his own unique desires.

Even though Argento didn’t write this, he injects as much of his directing style as possible. “Jenifer” always ends up being a compelling if not mysterious obsession story. It’s a depraved story with a lot of bite.

Sick girl

At the time, Lucky mckee was not so recognizable. He had previously directed the exceptional film Can, but other than that, McKee came to Mastery with little horror to his credit. Knowing that, “Sick girl”Ended up being a favorite for many fans of the series.

In “Sick Girl”, a clumsy entomologist (Angela Bettis) starts dating an eccentric artist (Erin brown). At first, Bettis’ character worries her career in insects will frighten her, but the revelation only elicits the opposite reaction. At the same time, someone has directly delivered a rare – and very dangerous – specimen that will put women’s new relationship to the test.

Queer horror wasn’t very common back when “Sick Girl” first aired, but this episode was a breath of fresh air. Of all the stories, this one has plenty of room for critical analysis. For example, homophobia comes in the form of a grumpy neighbor whose obvious aversion to lesbian protagonists is filtered out by an intense aversion to insects. Suffice it to say there is a lot to dissect here.

cigarette burns

Jean CharpentierThe first episode of is considered one of the absolute best in the series. The story tackles a favorable subject in horror; cursed objects. In this case, the unfortunate element is a movie.

According to tradition, the film sought in “Cigarette burns»Was only screened once because it pushed the audience into violent outbursts. Norman Reedus‘character is then hired by a cinephile, played by Udo kier, to find the missing film. In doing so, he only leads him on a path of no return.

Like at Carpenter In the mouth of madness, “Cigarette Burns” imagines what could happen if someone’s artwork were so dangerously influential. There are caveats to consider when evaluating this episode, but Spirits at Work tapped into something both unsettling and insightful about why the film means so much to us.

Sound like

Brad Anderson might not be the first name that comes to mind when remembering Masters of Horror, but his movie Session 9 has a large audience. This pending achievement alone is likely the reason he was drafted for the second season. And “Sound like”Looks like an anomaly compared to the other episodes.

In “Sounds Like”, a father and her husband (Chris bauer) drowns in work to avoid thinking about his grief. He also has a strange ability after losing his son; he has a keen sense of hearing. Over time, however, the din in his head grows too intense and he has to find a way to muffle the noise.

Upon its original release, “Sounds Like” was dismissed as not scary. The truth is, the Anderson episode really looks like something The twilight zone. The horror climate has changed a lot since the series aired, so today’s audiences might better appreciate this unusual and rather sad story about mourning.

If you like these episodes, check out the rest of Masters of Horror on Streambox.

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