Creepshow: The return of The Creep to Shudder’s new series

Creepshow - Courtesy Shudder
Creepshow - Courtesy Shudder /

Way back in 1982, Stephen King and George A. Romero teamed up to bring us the film Creepshow, a horror comic brought to life. Next week, Shudder debuts their original series of the same name.

Creepshow, George A. Romero’s collaboration with Stephen King told five different stories, all in a horror comic book type format. In fact, the movie was a love letter to the 1950’s EC comics, which told graphic, lurid stories of horror in bright, vivid colors.

Here’s a bit of trivia for you: Stephen King’s son Joe played the comic-loving boy in the prologue to the original Creepshow movie, which was already an interesting fact. Making it even more intriguing is the fact that Joe King changed his name when he became a fiction writer, and you now know him as Joe Hill (NOS4A2, Heart-Shaped Box, Horns). In another fun little twist, one of Hill’s stories (By the Silver Water of Lake Champlain) was adapted for the new series.

Speaking of the new anthology series, I am happy to say that it is very much like the original movie. The famous “Creep” has been changed a bit, but he is still just as creepy as ever, and the comic-book format and dark humor have remained intact.

Each episode will consist of two stories, and the first episode opens with the Greg Nicotero-directed Gray Matter, which is based on a Stephen King short story from his collection Night Shift. In a shout out to the original movie, Adrienne Barbeau appears, and boy is it good to see her again! She is just as great as she ever was.

Creepshow - courtesy Shudder
Creepshow – Courtesy Shudder /

Barbeau’s character is the owner of a small town store, and she is hanging out at the store with two locals during a bad storm. In walks teenage Timmy, whose Dad sent him over to pick up a case of beer. The three adults exchange knowing looks, because they know that Timmy’s dad Richie is basically a drunk. Even though she is probably breaking a state law, Barbeau brings him out a case of beer.

Timmy is near tears when he tells them that he is afraid of his father, and the two men offer to take the beer to him themselves, leaving Timmy at the store. As they head out in the torrential rain, Timmy tells Barbeau all about the downward slide of his father.

In the interest of no spoilers, that’s about all I am going to say about the plot. Suffice it to say that things get…slimy.  Stephen King fans familiar with the short story will have some idea of what’s coming, but will still appreciate the final moments, which are very comic book inspired.

Creepshow - Courtesy Shudder
Creepshow – Courtesy Shudder /

Story number two is The House of the Head, and it took me about ten seconds to recognize the little girl in the lead role. Hello, Judith from The Walking Dead! Cailey Fleming is great on TWD, and she does a fine job here as well.

Her character has a big, beautiful dollhouse occupied by a family of dolls that she has named the Smithsmiths. One day, she opens up the house and sees an unexpected new face in her dollhouse. And I use the word “face” literally…there is no body, just a scary, zombie-like head. Also, the Smithsmiths don’t seem too crazy about their new tenant, they all look scared to death.

As time passes, the head moves around the house and the girl tries to find a way to protect her doll family. It’s an engrossing and creepy tale based on a story by Josh Malerman, who also wrote Bird Box.

I liked both of the stories included in the first episode of Creepshow, although the first tale seemed a better fit for the horror comic premise. I really enjoyed the vivid cinematography and the slightly over the top stories. It was a great start to what will surely be a fun, scary series, and I will definitely be tuning in each week to see more.

Next. Shudder adds Creepshow and Hell House LLC III in September. dark

Catch new episodes of Creepshow  every Thursday on Shudder.

Are you a fan of the Creepshow movie? Will you be watching Shudder’s new series? Let us know in the comments section.