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Creepshow - Stranger Sings/Meter Reader - Review




SPOILERS AHEAD - PLEASE DON'T READ UNLESS YOU'VE WATCHED CREEPSHOW 03.04! Yes, you've been warned!



Stranger Sings: 

Axelle Carolyn returns from last season's "Dead and Breakfast" to direct this gory and surprisingly comedic segment with The Resident's Chris Mayers and Suehyla El-Attar and Greenleaf's Kadianne Whyte as Barry, an OBGYN and two mysterious women. He meets one, Sara, in a coffee shop, as these things usually happen. Sparks fly and he goes up to her apartment as a typical build-up to a romantic comedy-type of fantasy movie. 

Of course, this is Creepshow, not one of Netflix's recent female-targeted output series, so Sara turns out to be in cahoots with Miranda, a siren (no, not of the mermaid variety) to use this Dr. to switch out Miranda's hypnotic singing voice into her own so she can have the power to manipulate destroy any man she wishes dead, including Barry!.....b/c of course she does. An impromptu operation is to take place in this rather cramped living room once the Dr. realizes this siren leaves him no other option but to do what she desires.

 The story doesn't really make a lot of sense, but if you don't think about it too much, the segment is a lot of fun and ends on a surprising twist. I give this segment credit for giving rising female talents even more of a platform in the horror world and its use of mostly one location for most of the bloody action and the make-up was top notch, but it isn't one of the strongest segments of the season, let alone of the series so far. To be fair, it's far from the worst either. Veteran TV writer Jordana Arkin isn't known for writing horror and it shows, not that there's anything wrong with branching out.



Meter Reader: According to IMDB,
"a teenage girl must fight off a demonic plague when she realizes her family might be infected."
Joe Lynch returns to direct this memorable segment prolific Creepshow writer John Esposito wrote with Johnathon Schaech as Dalton, a meter reader in a post-apocalyptic world after a plague ravages the human race. There are also demon possession, mythical crystals, and exorcisms involved.

 Next, it cuts to Dalton's family who are waiting for the world to get back to normal (sound familiar?). Abigail Dolan of American Animals and Ordinary Joe plays Theresa, his cynical daughter. When someone claiming to be Dalton knocks at the door in the evening, the mother insists they let him, but Theresa threatens to cut his head off since he could be infected, if it is Dalton at all. The figure retreats to the cellar. Theresa is haunted by dreams that Dalton might be infected, but is it he that she really needs to be afraid of down there? Is she the family's true savior? 

 While I felt this was one of the stronger segments of the 4 episodes seen thus far, it felt too truncated to be considered an "instant classic." B/c this could only be a 22 minute episode for this series, most of the backstory is breezed through as if it were inconsequential. The family's fate doesn't get the dramatic poignance it needs. This story probably deserves a feature treatment. I definitely wanted to see and know more. It just jumped around too much and lacked character development. It is just a case of cramming a feature into a short and losing much connective tissue in the process. Still, it contained some great twists, arresting imagery, including a fun shot of a slithering tail I cannot get out of my head, and a final shot that could be described as "iconic." 

Some of the best production design, make-up, world-building, and special effects of the season. Sadly, the heavy-handed nods to a certain real life pandemic did take me out of the action too many times for comfort. 

Worth a re-watch for sure. That is not something to be taken for granted this season.

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