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Tonight’s theme is demons… and the people who love them… and who run from them, too.

We’re back with Joe Bob again this week at The Last Drive-In, exclusively on Shudder. It’s important to note, Mutants, that as of this moment Shudder has not committed to renewing The Last Drive-In for another round, so what I ask is that you take a moment to tweet @shudder with your desire for more episodes. Don’t forget the hashtag #TheLastDriveIn either!

And before we dive in to the Drive-In, I figure I’d toot my own horn again from the livestream.

Demon Wind (1990)

Opening Rant: That old idea of “this will hurt me more than it will hurt you.”


The first film of the night was that kind of drive-in cheese that is a perfect fit for us mutants. Demon Wind (1990) is a knockoff of The Evil Dead that is probably most interesting for the un-credited appearance of Lou Diamond Phillips as a zombie. Well, the Kung Fu magician is a nice touch as well.

The film follows a young man named Cory and his group of friends as they visit a farm that was owned by Cory’s family and has seen several bizarre and tragic deaths. After being attacked by demons, the group is forced to take shelter in the old farm and survive a night of terror, possessions, and surprisingly little demonic wind.

Demon Wind was directed by Charles Philip Moore and was only one of four films in his career. The movie features a group of very bland actors and actresses who look like knock-off versions of far more famous folks. The sole exception here being Stephen Quadros, the show-stealing Kung Fu magician. Other performances include Eric Larson, Francine Lapensée, Rufus Norris, and Jack Forcinito.


Joe Bob offered the film a generous 3 stars. The first half of the night’s highlight comes from Joe Bob attempting to summarize the 4 generations-worth of plot that Demon Wind eventually, inscrutably manages to work in. As always though, the insights into the filming were particularly entertaining, such as the revelation of the crew using the short ends of film stock, and using available fog for the foggy sequences of the movie as there was no budget for a fog machine. Wow.

As for the Haunted MTL review of the film, Demon Wind is strictly a 2 and a half star affair. It becomes a lot more fun when you pretend it is a spin-off of The Evil Dead with some doomed idiots and the random badassery of the Kung Fu magician. Also… those were some of the most Deadite-esque demon zombies outside of the Ash Williams adventures.


Best Line: “You killed me.” (Spoken like a disappointed mother)

The House of the Devil (2009)

Opening Rant: The theological origins of the concept of Hell.

The second film of the night was Ti West’s 2009 throwback Satanic cult film The House of the Devil. Ti West is a bit of a divisive figure in horror, sure, but no matter where you land on his work, The House of the Devil is certainly a much better film than Demon Wind… though maybe not as a drive-in movie. More on that later.

The House of the Devil follows a young babysitter named Samantha who, in desperate need of money to escape her awful roommate and pay for her own apartment, takes on a babysitting job. When she arrives at the house, however, she discovers that the job was not quite what was advertised. Regardless, she takes the job and spends a terrifying night seemingly alone in a spooky house, unaware of the sinister events she will become embroiled in.

The movie was written, edited, and directed by Ti West. It stars the magnetic Jocelin Donahue as Samantha, with Tom Noonan and Mary Woronov. Greta Gerwig has a brief, but memorable role, and there is a dash of Dee Wallace to add a little more flavor to this throwback film.

The House of the Devil, for someone who is unaware of its throwback nature, would likely see the film as a product of the late 70s early 80s, which the film purposefully evokes. Everything from the cameras used, the quality of the film, to the title card and lighting make this a film that really captures the grimy aesthetic of the late 70s to 80s slasher aesthetic.



Joe Bob awarded The House of the Devil 3 and a half stars. Joe Bob’s praise of the quality of the film and the sound design was effusive. In particular, there was a great deal of praise pointed at Jeff Grace’s score of the film, particularly how the score punctuates the noises of the house that terrify poor Samantha. Joe Bob did spend a great deal of time discussing Ti West as a filmmaker and horror audience reactions to the kind of “slow horror” that he tends to focus on in his work. At one point, Joe Bob describes Ti West as an “obsessive-compulsive only child” in a way that can only be described as endearing.

We’ll get this out of the way now: I am a fan of Ti West and The House of the Devil is a 4 star film. It is important to note that the film is slower that most films on The Last Drive-In, and unfortunately it makes the Mutants a little cranky. It is very interesting to watch these films live and watch Mutants discuss it on Twitter. Much like week 3 when The Changeling was on, many fans seemed to complain about The House of the Devil being slow. The Changeling and The House of the Devil are amazing movies and worth watching, but… they are not necessarily drive-in sort of films that live up to the three Bs (Blood, Breasts, and Beasts).

Despite these films not being the kind of films expected for drive-in fare, I appreciate and value their presence in The Last Drive-In, though and hope we get more of these slow-burn creepers as they are personal favorites of mine.

Spontaneous Spook-house Shuffle

Best Line: “I heard you college kids love pizza.”

Drive-In Totals

  • 1 tan suede shirt with white trim, with a silvery triangular bolo tie
  • 1 creepy gas station in the literal middle of nowhere
  • 1 rotten egg
  • 2 ceremonial daggers
  • 2 Joe Bob jokes (the British vs. the French, and handjobs)
  • 2 Joe Bob clipboard sightings
  • 3 warnings to “not go up there”
  • 4 generations worth of plot
  • 5 Twitter bans for Darcy
  • 9 bland, identical teenage archetypes
  • 18 day shoot for The House of the Devil
  • Gratuitous 90s sexism and homophobia
  • Gratuitous gun-totin’ old man
  • Gratuitous hallucinatory she-demon titties
  • Gratuitous home inspection
  • Gratuitous @jocelindonahue dancing
  • Gratuitous blood slip and slide
  • Gratuitous Darcy cosplay (as Samantha)
  • Beer Can Fu
  • Exploding Doll Fu
  • Tongue Lash Fu
  • Joe Bob Plot Summary Fu
  • Surprise Lou Diamond Phillips Fu
  • Vase Smashing Fu

As always, please share your thoughts with us about The Last Drive-In. Also, please check out our other great content here at Haunted MTL.


David Davis is a writer, cartoonist, and educator in Southern California with an M.A. in literature and writing studies.

Movies n TV

Suburban Screams, Cursed Neighborhood



Episode five of John Carpenter’s Suburban Screams was one of the best kind of horror stories. It is a dark, eerie tale of a mean house that is determined to destroy anyone who dares reside within it.

The story

Our story begins in 1682. A group of colonists are attempting to take over land that is very much not theirs. When the colonists are killed, they vow to curse the land.

Fast forward to modern times, and the land in question is a little suburban neighborhood. Carlette Norwood moves in with her husband, mother, and daughters. The house seems like a dream come true. Until, of course, their beautiful dream home becomes a nightmare. The curse of the colonists wrapped itself around the neck of each family member, turning them into people that they didn’t recognize. People who don’t exactly like each other.

What worked

While I wouldn’t say that the acting in this episode is flawless, it was several steps above what we’ve seen so far. Every actor seemed to understand their role and reacted in realistic ways. I was especially impressed by the young woman playing Angelique. She had the good sense to not overplay the role, giving each scene exactly the right amount of energy.


Of course, there was one actress who way overplayed every scene. But rather than being terrible, it was terrific. And that was Chloe Zeitounian, who played the neighbor Stacy. Stacy the neighbor was creepy as shit. After an unnamed neighbor dies by suicide, Stacy shows up at Carlette’s house with a bottle of champagne, sipping coffee with a big old smile. Well, okay it probably wasn’t coffee.

Stacy was a fantastic character, and I hope there was a crazy neighbor just like her. I bet her house was haunted as hell, but she just decided that her ghost was like a stray dog that everyone else thinks is dangerous. She probably put a bejeweled collar on the colonist ghost and renamed him Kori spelled with an I on purpose.

Finally, I want to talk about the theme of ancestral curse and ancestral protections that this episode discussed.

Charles County was cursed by the colonists who took the land that rightfully belonged to the indigenous tribes. They took what their ancestors had given them, and left a curse in their wake.

At the end of the episode, Carlette talks about being protected by her ancestors. Ancestors that survived horrible things most of us can’t imagine. I am sure that their strength blessed Carlette, and helped her to save Angelique.


What didn’t work

While this episode was certainly better than most of the season, it wasn’t perfect. The thing that most stood out to me as being frankly unneeded was the inclusion of maggots attacking Brian.

Paul A Maynard in Suburban Screams.

In multiple scenes, during which Carlette is narrating, Brian has maggots coming out of open wounds. Never once does Carlette mention a maggot issue.

It feels like there is a clear reason why the creators did this. This story doesn’t have a lot of blood, gore, or jump scares. And a core goal of horror content is to cause a reaction.

Stephen King has a great quote about this goal. “I recognize terror as the finest emotion and so I will try to terrorize the reader. But if I find that I cannot terrify, I will try to horrify, and if I find that I cannot horrify, I’ll go for the gross-out. I’m not proud.”

The inclusion of maggots in this story admits that someone involved didn’t think the story was terrorizing or horrifying enough. But it was. The story was freaky all on its own without the inclusion of our wriggling friends.

Is it true?

This might be an unpopular opinion, but aside from the completely unnecessary maggots infesting Brian, I think this episode is the most honest and accurate one so far.


The thing about hauntings is that they’re seldom what we see in the movies. Haunted houses don’t have glass vases flying off shelves and wallpaper peeling to reveal 666 painted in blood over arcane symbols. Haunted houses dig into the minds of those who live there, causing bad luck and bad vibes. And that’s exactly what happened here. There are no massive explosions. No spirits throwing people downstairs or demonic dogs chasing children from the attic. This house dug into the hearts and minds of a loving family, ripping them apart.

So yes, I do think this episode is likely true.

The further we get into Suburban Screams, the more I enjoy it. This episode was eerie, upsetting, and riveting. I hope that Carlette and her daughters are healing from this horrific journey. And I’m thankful to them for sharing their story. 4.5 out of 5 stars (4.5 / 5)

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Movies n TV

Happy Father’s Day Herman Munster!



Herman Munster would be so proud, collage by Jennifer Weigel
Herman Munster would be so proud, collage by Jennifer Weigel

Today for Father’s Day I want to celebrate one the best dads in horror ever: Herman Munster! Herman Munster of television celebrity is a perfect example of a good father in a genre awash in epically horrible parents. He is fun to be around, cares deeply about family, and has a huge heart. He is essentially the naive and loving Frankenstein’s monster despite his horrific appearance, and is aptly employed at a funeral home.

Herman is lovable, hardworking, and always ready with the physical humor dad jokes, even if he is too naive to catch on to his role in the punchlines all the time. He is devoted to his wife Lily Dracula and son Eddie and will do whatever he can to protect them. His generosity extends beyond just his own, with the family taking in his niece Marilyn (who is painfully normal by comparison to the Munsters), and father-in-law Grandpa.

Portrayed by Fred Gwynne, Herman Munster is kind of the epitome of the good father in horror. Sure, he’s a brute, and can be a little dim sometimes, but he’s really just a big teddy bear at heart, and always ready for a good laugh. And apparently Herman Munster was even nominated by his son Eddie for Father of the Year in Season 2, Episode 25, so it all comes around full circle. If the show highlight doesn’t load, you can find it here.

And to celebrate more great Hollywood celebrities, here’s a poem for Ed Wood and an homage to Theda Bara

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Movies n TV

Suburban Screams, The Bunny Man



Someone is stalking the children of Fairfax, Virginia. He comes bearing an axe. He comes from the forest. He comes in the night.

He comes dressed as a bunny.

The story

In the 1970s, the sleepy town of Fairfax Virginia was menaced by a man dressed as a rabbit. He stalked kids and teens with an axe while they were playing in the woods, or ‘parking’. Children were cautioned to not play outside after dark. Parents were terrified. The whole community was rocked by the horrific killer who, well, didn’t kill anybody. And who might have been a whole bunch of people inspired by a truly sad tale?

Still from Suburban Screams The Bunny Man.

The story begins a hundred years earlier. A man whose name is lost to time is accused of stealing a cow. For this crime, he’s sentenced to death because things were a lot tougher back then. The man escaped but swore vengeance on the town. A few days later several children were found hanging from a bridge underpass, butchered and hung as though they were slaughtered rabbits.

What worked

The biggest thing to love about this episode, the one thing that sets it apart from the rest of the season, was the presence of Historian Cindy Burke. Finally, we have an actual professional talking about one of these stories. Yes, there are still first-hand accounts. But that is how these sorts of stories work best. We have the emotional retelling of evocative survivors. But we also have a professional who is emotionally separated from the situation backing up these stories with historical knowledge.


This wouldn’t have mattered as much in any other setting. But Suburban Screams has been clear from the start that it wants to be seen as a documentary. This is supposed to be real. And if you’re going to claim that your ghost story is real, bring receipts. As many as you can.

If we’d seen more historians, detectives, and police reports through this series, it probably wouldn’t have the bad rating it does on IMDB.

What didn’t work

Well, it might still have had a bad rating. Because the acting in this episode was, for lack of a stronger word, terrible.

I don’t know if it was the directing, the casting, or just a weak talent budget. But not a single person except for the man playing the Bunny Man could act in any of these dramatic reenactment scenes.

The worst offender was probably the child playing Ed’s childhood friend. This character was way overacted. It’s as though the child had seen a parody of how little boys behave, and was told to act like that. As this was a little boy, he was likely a bit embarrassed.


And I know, I’m trash-talking a child actor. I’m trash-talking all of the children actors in this episode. But children can act. There are lots of examples of kids doing great acting jobs. Stranger Things is an obvious example. Violent Night is another. The kid can act. These kids couldn’t act.

Is it true?

Unlike most of the other episodes in this series, The Bunny Man is a story I’ve heard before. It is a legitimate urban legend that blossomed from a few firsthand accounts of madmen doing scary things dressed as rabbits in Fairfax County, West Virginia. These events probably inspired others to do stupid things like dress up like a rabbit and run around with an ax. Much like the people who decided to dress up like clowns and scare the hell out of people across the country in 2016.

So, yes, the Bunny Man is very much real. He’s real in the hearts and minds of pranksters and West Virginia frat boys. And he is based on some very real, very upsetting, actual events.

I honestly wish the whole season of Suburban Screams had been exactly like this. Filled with facts, first-hand accounts, and proof of scary events. This was everything I wanted in a supernatural/true crime story. So if you’re giving the rest of the season a pass, I would suggest watching this episode.

4 out of 5 stars (4 / 5)

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