Salem’s Lot (Part 2)

This week, we conclude our discussion of the 2-part TV miniseries, Salem's Lot, based on Stephen King's novel. This part is much more action-packed than the first, though...well, it's still a TV movie. Enjoy!

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Salem’s Lot: Part 2

Episode 302, 2 Guys and a Chainsaw

Todd: Hello and welcome to another episode of Two Guys and a Chainsaw. I’m Todd.

Craig: And I’m Craig.

Todd: Well, here we are with our second half of the Stephen King, 1979 TV mini-seriesm Salem’s :ot. If you haven’t already, you might want to go back to our previous episode and listen to the first half, because we did this movie in chunks. It’s a three hour long movie. So we did the first hour and a half.

Was shown on television. And then now we are taking over from right when it was starting to get good for the second half. I, I think that what we kind of concluded from the last episode was that the first half was a little, it took its time. It took us time with exposition and pretty much setting everything up.

And it really wasn’t until. A little over an hour in, if not, arguably the very end of the first episode of Salem’s lot, did we start to really see stuff happened? Right. Scary stuff. I should say. Not that things weren’t going on, but it was just a lot of drama between everybody. And I think where we left off was the.

Kid Danny had been buried in the cemetery and he had been of course bitten by his brother, then the grave Digger. Whose name was mark or David? 

Craig: Mike, I think 

Todd: Mike’s in this. Yeah, it’s all like mark, Mike, David, John, Danny, Susan. These names are really forgettable. There’s normal. 

Craig: That’s the thing about the first movie, like, yeah, it’s a lot of setup because there’s a lot to set up.

Like there are so many characters to meet and though many of them play relatively minor roles. They, they are all a part of the action of what happens. And so it is, it is a lot of setup. And then. Strangely enough, once it gets to the action, it becomes far more focused on the central characters and all of these other characters that, you know, they’ve spent so much time introducing, just becoming.

Vampire feast. 

Todd: Absolutely. Right. It’s it’s so much set up with all these intricate characters and then it just ends up focusing on these same two or three people to start dropping away. One by one. I guess we got to know the victims a little bit. But what happens is this dirt grave Digger, mine gets entranced by the coffin that he’s burying of Danny.

And he leaps in and uncovers the coffin. What little dirt he put on it, opens it up. And of course Danny’s inside there full on vamp, glowing eyes open. I’m never going to get over this glowing eye effect, by the way. It’s very effective. It looks really good. Yeah. Awesome. Then he, he sits up and bites him and that’s how the first half ends where we pick up on the second half, we start off a little kind of focusing a little bit more on the boy it’s mark, right?

Yeah, it is. He’s taking it very well, but his two friends are completely dead. Well kind 

Craig: of, I mean, but his parents are worried about him because I don’t know, he’s not reacting much at all. Which concerns, especially. His mom. But his dad’s like, you know, he’s just like that, you know, he never really shows his emotion, but they are concerned and you know, the guy.

Or the dad tries to talk to him. And this kid is I’m really into like monsters and horror and magic. And the dad is like, why are you so interested in all this stuff? And he’s like, I don’t know. I just always have been that’s who I am. And the dad picks up a, a set of handcuffs and he’s like can you get out of these?

And he’s like, yeah, sure, no problem. Put them on me. And the dad does. And he, you know, pops right out of them and then he’s got some ropes sitting right there. He’s like here, tie me up.

And the dad’s like, yeah, like maybe another time. And the kid’s like, no, seriously, I can get out any night. And dad’s like, okay. But that, I mean, it plays in, in a very small way later, but a funny little set. 

Todd: I like that scene though. Honestly, it was nice to have the scene at the beginning of the movie because it speaks to me.

I was that kid, you know, I was, you were too, I’m sure I was into hope, monsters and horror and magic as well. Very much into magic growing up. My parents certainly didn’t seem very disturbed by it, even though. Teachers you know, I would write stories with Freddy Krueger in them, gory stories and stuff. I would write stories.

I’d show my parents that had killings and blood and stuff in them. And they really surprisingly weren’t terribly alarmed by it. They would be like, yeah, maybe you want to tone back on this a little. And, you know, there was even one time, I think when the teacher did, I think it was my third grade teacher had a meeting with my mom and dad just saying like the subject matter, what he writes when he has these creative writing assignments at school always tends towards the dark and my parents’ reaction to it.

I’m really proud of them was just like, okay. And then they came home and said to me, yeah, you might want to tone that down a little bit when you’re at school that freaks teachers out. Yeah. It freaks people out. But at the same time, my dad was writing horror movies for me, even though he didn’t enjoy them, particularly I read Stephen King books and all this kind of stuff that I would get from the library quite openly.

And they never expressed any concern. But I do think that there are a number of parents who do worry about their. Maybe just overall, when we talk about horror and I think we’ve brought up the subject before people who aren’t into horror, sometimes don’t get it. They don’t get it. They don’t, they’re like there must be something wrong with you.

There must be some really deep, dark part of you or some, something about your nature must be messed up that you enjoy these kinds of things. And my reaction to them is just like this kid. It’s like, I don’t know why I’ve just always been into it. Like I can’t. Even explain the appeal. I’ve just always been into it and that’s just been my thing.

And it does appeal to me, but I couldn’t for the life of you. Tell me why. And I like that. The second part of the movie of this mini series that people are watching on television, the whole nation confronts us a little bit. I don’t know if it was a big intention, but I mean, the. It’s a good five minutes of, at least of the movie.

You 

Craig: see characters like this pop up in horror movies all the time. If I were to rack my brain, I’m sure I could come up with a million examples, but like the, the monster squad, you know, 

Todd: Oh, also real quick. Hello, Mary Lou prom night, too. Doesn’t that have a guy who was really obsessed with horror in it.

Okay. 

Craig: I don’t remember that movie very well, but you, you see it all the time. And the last time we talked, I talked about how Stephen King often writes about teachers and writers because that’s who he is. And I have a feeling that the reason that these characters pop up in these movies so often is because they are a reflection of the people who are making these movies, because obviously the people who make these movies.

Love these movies, you know, why, why would you build a career in this field in particular now? I’m sure there are a lot of people who have careers. They don’t love, but in this field in particular, why would you choose this kind of material? If it wasn’t something that you loved? And I, and I imagine that probably I don’t know, Stephen King writers, directors, actors who are drawn to this genre probably feel much the same way that we do in the way that this kid does.

I don’t know. I can’t tell you exactly why, you know, I I’ve talked before how it’s kind of like riding a roller coaster. It’s scary, but it’s fun because. Triggers endorphins and, you know, kind of a chemical thing, like you kind of get to you kind of get to live vicariously through these characters in these dangerous scenarios, in the comfort of your own home, knowing that you are entirely 100% safe.

You still get to experience that rush through the characters. And, and maybe that’s not it at all. I don’t know, but I, I don’t think I’m a sick person, you know, I don’t, I I’ve never, I’ve never even been like in a fistfight, like I don’t. Have any inclination towards violence or anything like that. And I think that most people don’t but it is a misconception.

I’ve talked about how my mom, she doesn’t get a leader. My dad was into it still is. And I imagine that that’s kind of. How I got into it, but my dad’s also into lake fishing, which I could care less about. So it’s not 

Todd: quite the opposite it’s drilling for like 30 seconds. Maybe if you’re lucky. 

Craig: I, you know, I enjoy fishing with my dad because I enjoy being with my dad and I do enjoy being outdoors.

And I particularly, I love the water and I love being on the water. But I’m more content to just let him fish and I’ll just sit there and read a book and enjoy the invite. You know, like it just doesn’t do anything for me and that’s fine, but you know, he’s our little avatar in this movie, plus he’s young, he’s young.

And I think that you and I, and probably many other people look back on this age. Very fondly where, you know, you’re, you’re, you’re coming out of childhood, but you’re still clinging to some of those childish things in this case. And I know that we still do. I know you still do, especially, but like, you know, the kids into making models and he’s got all this horror memorabilia around.

And I think that it’s a kind of a poignant question. At one point, his dad says, when are you going to grow out of this? And he says, I don’t know, Someday, I guess, and to some extent we do, and to some extent we don’t, you know, I’ve, I’ve, I know I’ve, I’ve been to your house.

I seen I’ve seen your collections and stuff and, and I think that’s really cool. And I, and I think it’s cool that you’ve got, you know, all these comics and the complete DVD set of tales from the crib. You, you don’t. Grow out of that entirely. And I’m glad that we don’t, ah, we wouldn’t have been doing this for 500 years if we did, 

Todd: we’re wants to talk.

Right. That’s necessarily a childish pursuit. It’s just something we started pursuing when we were children. And I doubt that, you know, people grow up absolutely having nothing to do with horror. And then like by their mid forties are suddenly enthralled by it. You know? I don’t think. Probably doesn’t usually work that way.

But another nice thing about having a character like this in the movie is it allows you to skip over a whole bunch of stuff. You’ve already got that character who totally gets it. He knows all the vampire rules, you know, you don’t need to convince him very hard about the existence of vampires, you know?

And so he does become a key element in the second half, whereas. Almost completely absent from the first half of the movie. 

Craig: That’s true. And that’s something that’s different from the book. Mark is a key character throughout the entirety of the book, as I remember, and as I remember, Susan plays a much larger role in the book and the priest, I don’t even remember what the priest’s name is, but he.

Is relegated to virtually nothing. 

Todd: Yeah. You don’t even see him until the second half. 

Craig: And I don’t know what his name is. Right. But like in, he was pivotal in, in the book and I guess his character pops up in some of the. King’s work. I think that he’s in one of the books, at least from the dark tower series, which, you know, just generally speaking is another thing that I like about king Stephen King has really built his own universe.

And there are crossovers within that universe and, and they’re often very, very small, but for those of us who are devoted fans, they’re, they’re really fun. Little Easter eggs. Like Dick Halleran from the shining shows up for just one chapter in it. And there are just other little references. And now the King’s son, Joe Hill Stablish himself as a very talented writer.

I’m a huge fan. If you haven’t read Joe Hill stuff, Todd and you listeners. It’s great. It’s not entirely dissimilar from his dad. He does horror, but it’s more I would, I would say it’s kind of more in the line of fantasy horror. He does short stories. It does novels, everything I’ve read of his. I really like, and he and his dad had done some crossovers, but one of the benefits of.

Being Stephen King’s son, it’s really easy to license his properties. So 

Todd: one would hope. Right? 

Craig: Right. So in Joe Hill’s work, there’s often a lot of call backs and connections to his dad’s work and, and that’s fun too. I can’t recommend him enough. He’s one of my favorite authors of the moment. And I’ve read almost everything that he.

Todd: That’s cool. Well, yeah, dad just talks to him and he’s, you know? Okay. And then the police have done some research. You know, they just, almost some of this almost feels like quickly filling us in on the facts from the first movie in case we forgot. 

Craig: Right. 

Todd: Time passed between the first, was it two nights, two subsequent nights?

Was it one week? 

Craig: No, I mean, it was, it was right away because yeah, those reports come back. Like the, the Constable had ordered reports on Stryker, Barlow and Ben and they all come back with no information, nothing that we didn’t already know. Really but then we see Ben and his teacher friend Burke at dinner.

Having kind of casual conversation, but then Mike, the grave Digger like collapses on their table. They have him sit down and he’s out of it. And he says, he’s sick. He’s got visible puncture wounds on his neck. And he says, He doesn’t know what happened. He woke up in the cemetery, like he must’ve slept there all night that he doesn’t remember all he remembers as he heard singing and seeing bright, scary eyes.

And he says, I remember a dream there, there was somebody out there and I let them in. And this becomes a motif as we see more and more. Townspeople, most of whom we know on some level in this same state, dazed and confused, and they talk about having strange dreams and they talk about people visiting them in the night.

Often, people that we already know are dead. Like for example, Mrs. Glick, Danny’s mom passes out at some point and says, you know, Danny’s been visiting me at night and several other people say the same thing. What gets me. And what I remember is that this happens really fast from this point on like all of a sudden.

Everybody is getting turned. And Ben even explains that like he’s talking to Susan at one point, Susan has been gone. She went for a job interview at Boston and has been gone for several days, but she comes back as all these weird things are happening. In fact, like. Ben gets attacked by her.

Ex-boyfriend just because he’s a jealous butthole. But then gets put in the hospital. And when he comes out of the hospital, Susan greets him and she’s like, dad called me. Oh, it was just a little luck. No, you’re okay. There’s more been Ned Tebbetts died last 

Todd: night. 

Craig: They found him dead this morning and town jail that examined him.

Pernicious anemia. Boy, that’s only Ned had high blood pressure and Dan, his mother died this afternoon. Same symptoms. I think. So. What does your father say? He wants to talk to you and Jason Burke. Jason Berg. He’s here. Ben here in the hospital. Intensive care. What. 

Todd: Hi to attack 

Craig: and there’s a baby that’s dead.

And like their bodies missing from the morgue and your teacher had a target attack and he’s in the ICU. Like it’s just happens all at once. And as they kind of start to figure it out, because Burke had invited Mike to stay at his house since he wasn’t feeling well. And Burke had noticed the puncture marks and in the night he had heard like he called.

Been in the morning, he says, come over by the way, if you’ve got a crucifix, bring it with you. So Ben comes over and Berks, like I swear, I heard him talking to somebody in the night. I heard him let somebody in, so let’s go check on him. And so then they go check on. And he’s dead. And the window is open and Burke said, I, I closed and locked the window.

I’m absolutely a hundred percent sure of it. And so they, but, but the puncture wounds are gone, which I don’t really understand. 

Todd: No, I don’t get that. 

Craig: I’m guessing it’s because he’s now been turned full vampire. So like they have restorative properties or, or something that could be, but then he disappears from the Morgan.

He shows up and tries to lure Burke out. And he’s really scary. The, the mic, the empire is really scary, but I guess because Burke kind of suspects what’s going on, he’s able to resist. More than the previous people who didn’t really know what was going on. And he doesn’t look in his eyes and he holds up a cross and using the cross forces, vampire Mick out through the window, but this just keeps happening, but whole Ned gets attacked in jail at some point, mark.

Is sitting with his parents and the priest. I think it’s because they are so concerned about his fascination with magic and monsters. Oh, and it’s also because Danny visited mark to try to get him to come out. 

Todd: Danny visited mark, and that was creepy. But mark had his, his crucifix snapped off of his little model he was working on and was like a modeling, 

Craig: like a cemetery.

You know, 

Todd: he’s too smart for this, but also you’re wondering, cause he’s still, these vampires can trans people, but it seems like if you kinda know, if you more or less kind of know, or suspect what might be going on, then you have an ability to resist this. If you don’t stare too deeply at their, at their eyes, who goes with Ben to see the priest before this?

Oh, it’s been in her dad at some point after Ned surprises band and beats him up. And then Ben talks to the. In the hospital, right? 

Craig: Because the doctor is also Susan’s 

Todd: dad. Yeah. He and the teacher approached the doctor after they’re running with Mike. And of course the doctor doesn’t quite believe him.

Ned surprises. Ben beats him up. Ben goes to the hospital and, and talks to the doctor. He still doesn’t really believe him, but he asks for a crucifix anyway. And he’s like, yeah, I guess we can make that work. In the meantime, Jason, Jason. His teacher, he’s reading up on vampires and that’s when he goes upstairs and has his encounter with Mike, but he ends up succumbing to a sudden heart attack.

Is that something that Mike made happen you think, or do you think he was just shocked by the 

Craig: whole affair that I think he was just shocked by the whole affair. We had seen him he had been struggling seemingly with heart pains in the night. And then, and then after. The grave Digger died and came back and confronted him.

He had heart pains again, and apparently had heart attack. He’s an older guy. So I assume it was just natural. That 

Todd: makes sense. Well, net ends up in jail. We just see another quick scene where he’s laying in his jail cell, in his jail cell mysteriously opens and he sits up and this is the first time I think.

Right that we get to see full on Barlow, the evil vampire. 

Craig: I think you’re right. It’s just like a quick face shot. Very rat like blue. Yeah. He’s bald a very prominent things, but they’re not like 

Todd: his they’re like his front two T 

Craig: they’re not his canines. Yeah. They’re they’re like his front two or they’re closer together than you typically.

I would 

Todd: expect of a vamp. It’s very much like Nosferatu. Yeah, I think, I 

Craig: think, but I feel like the first time we get a really good look at him is when mark is meeting with his parents and, and the priest, because he has seen Danny and he’s told his parents. And, and they think that there’s something wrong with them.

So so they call in the priest and out of nowhere and for reasons unclear to me, the whole house starts to shake and then both Stryker and Barlow show up just seemingly out of nowhere. 

Todd: It’s an odd scene, right? Because there’s no, like, are they just on their rounds? 

Craig: Yeah. No, it seems like they’re targeting them for a reason, I guess the priest, but why like the priest isn’t onto them, you know, like, yeah.

I have no idea what’s going on, but, but they show up and, and we see at this point, you know, we’ve seen striker a million times. He’s just a regular guy, but now we see a Barlow and, you know, not only does he look strange in his physicality and his face, but he dresses like Nosferatu. He’s dressed like a bat, like in a Cape and all black and he bashes Mark’s parents.

He batches their heads together and kills them. Yeah, that’s true to the book too. I don’t remember if that’s exactly how they died in the book, but a mark is left an orphan and it’s a weird scene. It ends with what kind of Barlow is holding. Mark, like in a chokehold and striker says to the priest, what would you give for this miserable boy?

What do you ask? What would you give to reprieve him this night to save him for another 

night? 

Craig: What do you want the master wants you throw away your cross, face, the 

Todd: master, your faith against his faith. Could you 

Craig: do that? Is your faith.

And trust him to let the boy go. They let mark go. And mark leaves. But these, like, I, he killed my parents and he’s, he looks at Barlow. He’s like, I’m going to kill you. And then he runs away. And then there’s this weird interaction between the priest and, and, and Barlow that I don’t know. I ultimately, I don’t even know what happened.

Todd: Yeah. Yeah. I’m not sure either. I guess we’re just supposed to believe the priest died, 

Craig: I guess like, like they just kind of look at each other and Barlow like starts to approach him and the priest is holding up the cross, but it doesn’t really seem to be having much of an effect, which I don’t understand.

Cause I feel like the cross works every other time. 

Todd: Well, he says it doesn’t work against the master. That’s what that’s what Sorry. Stryker’s striker says, yeah, it doesn’t work that your cross won’t work against the master and, and Barlow grabs the cross and kind of bends that I guess, and tosses it down on the ground.

And I think that’s where the scene ends is with the cross on the ground and then cut to something or cut to commercial probably. And then we’re done. So like, I guess the priest is out of the picture and his parents are dead and You know, mark is allowed to run away by the way. Did you notice in the scene just before this, when Ben and the doctor were meeting with whoever it was, we’re meeting with the priest that shot of the cast of the church on the outside that they, it had like a huge pendulum attached to a clock.

Wasn’t that bizarre? 

Craig: It was weird. I’ve never seen anything like. 

Todd: It was clearly animated on there. I mean, there was, I D I thought maybe for some reason that was going to have some significance later, because it was such an odd thing. Why they went through the trouble of putting that in the movie for like two seconds.

Craig: Right. Apropos of nothing. I don’t know. At this point, Ben has convinced Dr. Norton to examine Mrs. Glick Danny’s mom. Cause she has died. And it’s funny cause like the doctor, I mean, he’s going to do it. And like he looks at her and it’s, and he’s basically like, she’s the same as the other ones I’ve looked at.

Like she’s not showing any signs of rigor, mortis, even though she is dead, she doesn’t have a pulse and he leaves today. Get something. I don’t know, but Ben is sitting there and he makes a cross out of tongue depressors, which I thought was kind of hilarious. 

Todd: Right? Yeah. And he starts reciting, you know, Bible verses.

Yeah. 

Craig: And, and he, and he says there are no atheists in foxholes, which is a phrase that I’ve heard before. And I can only imagine is true. You know, when, when, when you’re in that big trouble belief, nobody’s. You start praying just in case

Todd: and sure enough, the body starts moving under the sheet and he kind of stands up and then the body sits up and it’s Mark’s mother has turned and she just sits there and she almost looks confused. Really. Which I would imagine would be how you would initially wake up as a new vampire. Yeah. 

Craig: It’s it’s it’s Dan it’s Danny’s mom.

I don’t know. I don’t know if Mark’s parents get turned or not. We don’t, we don’t see that’s true. But yeah, I mean, when we had seen her before, when she had been in that kind of insensible state, and she had said that Danny had come to her and had told her that they could be together forever. And so when she wakes up, she’s kind of calling.

And she does seem a little confused, but when she sees Ben, then she’s like, oh, I’m a vampire.

Todd: But thank God Ben made that cross because he just approaches her. And bill runs into the room at the same time, thankfully. So he can see this go down and then he approaches her and puts that presses that cross against her forehead, which burns it as you would suspect. 

Craig: Yeah. Evil ed 

Todd: style just disappeared.

Like it just fades out in a really cheap effect, 

Craig: which I, I guess the cross. 

Todd: Yeah, I guess I don’t understand that bit so you can kill them with the cross by touching them. I don’t know, because she just disappears. Literally just dissolves away. It’s not a pile of Ash or anything. After that a bend runs to Susan tells her, you gotta leave town.

Susan never does leave town. 

Craig: No, she says she right. He says, you know, by sundown, get your mom and as many other people as you can. To 

Todd: go and he and bill are going to stay behind. I’m going to stay behind with your dad and help him fight. We’re going to fight the vampires together. And Ben goes to the police station.

This is the point where it’s just like, they’re just a couple more scenes to make you realize that pretty much everybody in town it’s good. It’s money. You know, he goes to the police station, the policeman’s called in sick for the first time ever. And his on-duty cop there. Isn’t looking so well, but he’s complaining about visions that he had the night before.

It’s like, oh shit, And he runs out and 

Craig: Susan goes to his room, the room that Ben’s been renting and the landlady is, is clearly, you know, mid turn and talks about having dreams of her ex-husband visiting for some 

Todd: dumb, I sorta feel, yeah. Know why she just decides to go to the house. Like 

Craig: I know that this happened in the book too, and I can only imagine.

That there was a reason, but in the movie it just seems like she’s just an idiot. Like not only just, just to go, but to go by herself. Like, what was her plan? What was her objective? Like? Did she just want to look at the house? Like 

Todd: I don’t, I don’t, she wasn’t, I’m going to stay like, as she goes, she steps out, it looks like she’s going to approach it.

Maybe thinks better. And then she sees some movement in the grass and And you know, everything’s kind of elevated. So she looks up and sees on the hill where the house is that boom, there’s mark with two stakes in his hand running towards the house. So he’s going to go and take care of business and fulfill his promise of killing the vampires, which is cool.

And being marked with, as a magician and whatnot and escape artist, he has a lock picking set, which I thought was awesome. And he picks a lot quite quickly into the Seller and goes in and she follows a man, but when she goes in there, like he’s gone, he’s runway ahead. And so now there’s just a lot of creeping around the house and, you know, she leaves the seller and goes up into the main house and the house is impressive.

Craig: I really 

Todd: liked this huge. Yeah, the beautiful, and even the detail of just it’s a house that has absolutely been neglected for 20 years and nobody’s done anything to fix it up. Right. So. Crap dust in the air there’s dust in the air, which was a really nice effect. 

Craig: Well, there’s mold and Moss, like growing up the walls, everything.

Todd: Yeah. 

Craig: And there’s tons like the entire like decorative motif is taxidermy. 

Todd: Same degree to the point where at one point mark opens a drawer and it’s just full of glass eyes that you would use in the, in the animals for the taxidermy. It’s nuts. 

Craig: Another really cool touch that I really liked was there is a lot of taxidermy and there are heads of deer or other animals with antlers on the walls.

But within those antlers, Are the corpses of other animals like dogs and in, in various forms of decay, like some that look like they’ve been killed only recently and some that are like all bone and I wasn’t really sure what to make of that. I’m like, it looks amazing. It looks super creepy. And I love it, but I didn’t know if that was supposed to suggest that like they were Barlow or, or somebody was feeding off of these dogs.

I’m not sure, but. 

Todd: It’s hard to pick apart like a backstory, you know, to kind of fit why there’s so much taxidermy around here and dead animals. It would have been nice to have had a line or two in the movie that might’ve foreshadowed this, or kind of explained it a little bit, but presumably it was the previous inhabitant, right?

Certainly Barlow and M and Straker didn’t have enough time to do or inclination to do all this 

Craig: stuff. One would think, but then there’s all, you know, in the first movie, The caretaker, the cemetery guy had a dog and it was killed presumably by Stryker. Never, we, we don’t know why. Hm. And I read something that like, if you look closely the dog is, is near or underneath a tombstone that is maybe Hubie.

Is it mantle? Is that the mantle house? Is that what it’s called? Whatever Morrison. Yeah. So, so maybe it was some sort of sacrifice. I don’t know. It’s never explained, but dead dog, dead dogs. I don’t know, but the house looks cool and they’re both in there and they’re just kind of snooping around separately and the whole, like, again, the whole, like Mark’s a kid, so I’ll give him a pass, you know, for being impulsive and not terribly bright, you know, he thinks he’s avenging his parents.

I get that. Susan’s a grown ass adult and has been. Presented as being intelligent, but not here. 

Todd: Right. But 

Craig: no, no. And like, she’s not even discreet, like she’s just walking around in this huge, huge house, like mark, like, well, okay. Or the 

Todd: vampires,

someone else’s house. Come on. And then. Ben and bill show up. Well, yeah, but 

Craig: first they they’re, they’re, they’re separated at first and then they find each other, but as soon as they find each other, they have. Noise in the house and Mark’s like, they’re here. And so mark goes into a room where he heard noise and Susan is outside and he’s not responding to her.

So she goes in there and she sees that mark has been knocked out by Stryker and Straker leads her away. I got the impression that he was kind of able to in trance her as well and just leads her away. And then Stryker ties up mark and a chair. And he’s like, what have you done with Susan? And he says I, I.

Took her to what she came here for. I took her to meet the man. She came here to meet and then like the, the Constable is leaving town and been like, choose his ass, like the old towns in trouble. And you’re leaving. He’s like, yep. I’m getting out of here. But he gives Ben a gun. And then it cuts back up to mark in the house.

And he frees himself from the knots, which we knew he could do. Cause he told us earlier. And then that’s when Ben and, and, and bill they talk about the fact that, you know, Susan has not shown up to get her mother out of town. And so they go to the church, they collect holy water and then they head up to the.

And I guess this is, you know, the, the finale 

Todd: now they call it, they go through the trouble. Collecting the holy water is the holy water every year. 

Craig: No, in fact, he drops it and breaks it like right at a pivotal moment, right. At a pivotal 

Todd: moment. That’s right. Idiot. So, so they go into the house and there’s more creeping around, you know, they run into mark, Mark’s trying to leave, but then mark kind of comes back in and anyway, there’s just a lot more creeping around.

And bill goes up the stairs and this time, which I just swear that we never saw it when she went up the stairs. We had a shot in that direction. Anyway, this time when he goes up the stairs he turns and looks to the right and the hallway ends in just a wall with it just has antlers sticking out of it every which way.

And so then there’s a door creeps, open and shots and there’s no ice. And so he slowly goes to this door. Striker is behind the door. He opens it and just starts walking very deliberately towards him. Bill does nothing, but back away, maybe two small steps. And Stryker with this sort of superhuman strength grabs him by the shoulders, lifts him off his feet and walks him straight into those antlers.

Just completely impales them. This is the other scene that I remember as a kid, as a kid. I remembered it as the vampire doing this, but actually it’s Stryker. And as a kid, this shocked the hell out of me. It’s pretty graphic 

Craig: for network television. It 

Todd: is, and it kind of comes out of nowhere now. I mean, sadly, you know, while he’s like kind of hanging there and we see that shot, which is pretty graphic, like already, like the fake prop antlers are kind of bending a little bit.

It loses a little bit of its luster the longer the screen lingers on it, but it’s a cool thing. And I, this was a change from the book. As I remember in the book instead of this happening, he actually falls through the floor and gets eaten up by rats. 

Craig: Oh, I don’t remember that. Yeah. 

Todd: And so then striker very slowly grabs a post and comes down the stairs towards Ben and mark.

And Ben just opens fire on him a bunch of times. And at first it doesn’t seem to affect him, but then he slows down and he falls and dies. Yeah, you’re on the stair. 

Craig: It’s a little bit anticlimactic. Yeah, it’s a anti-climactic for his character, but at the same time, I kind of don’t get it because in fright night, the, the main vampires familiar also had superhuman stress.

And was hard to kill, but ultimately didn’t it turn out. He was like some other kind of demon or something like he wasn’t human either. I had assumed that Straker was human, but he’s able with no trouble at all to pick up a grown man into the air. And then he endures a whole pistol worth of rounds.

Before, finally falling down and dying. So he dies, you know? Yeah. He had talked about how he and Barlow had been partners for a very long time. So I don’t know if it’s just Barlow’s influence or what it is, but maybe he’s got some supernatural abilities maybe including long life. I don’t know.

Ultimately it doesn’t matter because. 

Todd: He’s dead. He’s dead. It’s really anticlimactic. I really was disappointed. And that 

Craig: really is kind of anti-climate 

Todd: it’s true. The ending is a bit of a disappointment because after this happens, then sun’s going down soon. We need to go find these vampires. So they go into the basement, the basement stairs have been knocked away, so they kind of fall and mark injures his foot, but that doesn’t seem to matter.

And then they poke around very slowly around there a little bit. And they find a, basically a compartment break. That’s when he broke, when he drops his holy water, while he’s trying to break the the padlock off of it. And when he opens it up, they look inside and there’s the big, long coffin and a whole pile of vampires.

Just, just sleeping every which way in there. I imagine in the book. Cause I don’t remember it very well, but I imagine the book there must’ve been like a half a town’s worth full of vampires in there or something. Right. I think the movie is supposed to give the impression, the towns over run, but it doesn’t give a good job of it because we’ve only seen a dozen or so characters.

And though we see them get picked off and the cops leave town, you know, there’s no sense there’s no grant shot or anything of, of an empty town or of, of, of anything like that. It’s just those. 12 or so characters that we saw previously who were there, you know, it’s just sort of a limitation of the, of the budget, right?

Craig: If I do remember the book correctly, it quite literally was virtually everybody in town had been turned like this. This was now a town. Vampires, 

Todd: but you’d never know it from the movie really. Right. You could imply it sort of, but 

Craig: I know that in one of Stephen King’s short story collections, there is a continuation.

It’s not really a continuation because it doesn’t follow the same figures, but Jerusalem’s lot is still known as a town. Of vampires and people stay away from it. And of course, in, in the story, some dummy doesn’t stay away from it. And that’s why it’s a scary story. 

Todd: That’s what makes it a scary, otherwise, that would be an interesting story.

Wouldn’t it? Although the vampires are going to the supermarket, meet each other for coffee at the coffee shop a little bit of less drama there. Yeah. So then they pull out the coffin and they open it up and he’s in. And they’re like, oh, the sun’s going down. The sun’s going down, but no, it’s the vampire wakes up, but he isn’t able to do much.

He kind of reaches out, but by now, Ben already has a stake up against him. Mark runs towards him to help or something. And he’s like, no, stay away. And he like flings him. The room almost with a superhuman strength of his own and Ben wax himself against a table and sits there with his back to the opening where all of these vampires in there, by the way, are waking up and crawling ominously towards him.

I think 

Craig: that was my favorite shot because they’re crawling out of the dark and not only they crawling out of the dark, but the focus, the camera focus is on. Mark. So they’re there, they’re crawling out of the dark, but they’re also in fuzzy focus and we can recognize them. These are people that we know they’re like cats that like they’re creeping up really slowly, 

Todd: an idiot bends back as totally to them.

Craig: Yeah. Mar I mean, mark eventually like at the last moment, I don’t know if he hears something or. But he turns around and, and closes the door and is able to lock them in there. So disaster averted and right. And just think talking about it and thinking about it, like in the moment, I, I wasn’t thinking about it as much, but it really is very anticlimactic.

And I don’t remember the book feeling that way. I felt like there was a lot of build to a climax in the book and here. He quite literally just pulls the coffin out, opens it and steaks them. Like, that’s it like there’s no, you know, Barlow’s supposed to be this presumably centuries old master certain.

Yeah. He, he didn’t seem very hard to take out like. Find him pull his coffin out, staken, call it a day. 

Todd: And that’s basically what they do. They run out of there and they like the whole house on fire. And then they ended up in a car and driving away and mark says to Ben, what are we going to do now? And Ben’s basically like, we’re going to drive them again.

The implication that there are many, many. In the town will drive them out of their hiding places will purify Salem’s lot. And the others will be on the run. The others, of course, also, including Susan. Right? Well, that was 

Craig: something we haven’t seen her. And I thought that was really kind of strange. And again, I don’t remember how it plays out in the book.

Where did she go? She just disappears and we don’t know what happened. Sure her. I mean, ultimately we kind of do, but the whole time, like when he’s setting the house on fire, like he looks up and he’s like, I’m sorry, Susan. Like, I guess presumably she’s in there, but it just, she, she feels like an afterthought.

Really in the whole movie, she feels kind of like an afterthought. She’s she’s not important. She doesn’t do 

Todd: anything. She’s always there. You’re right. She just doesn’t do anything. It’s so sad. Really. And then we come back to what we saw in the very beginning of the first episode, which was two years later in Mexico when they’re at that church.

And they had just filled their vials with holy water and it lights up and says, and they say, oh, they’re near or something like that. And I guess. What else? What are they going? Or do they, I 

Craig: dunno, they go, they go to Luke Skywalker’s house on tattooing.

Todd: Oh my God. You’re right. 

Craig: Yeah. So they, they, they go to this kind of like Adobe place where they’re staying, I guess. And mark like stays in the living room. Just standing there. And Ben walks into the bedroom where there’s just like a small bed or a cot or something. And Susan is laying there in all white looking, very, very beautiful, like she’s posing for a painting or something, but her eyes are closed, closed.

And as he approaches, she’s like, I’ve been looking for you for so long. It was so hard to find you. Found you and we can be together. We can be together forever. That’s his promise. And she opens her eyes and she’s a vampire and it kind of seems like, you know, she’s in chanting him and he’s coming closer and like, they’re going to kiss and it looks like she’s, you know, preparing to bite him.

But you know, we see him raise his stake up behind him and he steaks. 

Todd: It’s smart, I guess, to try to end this on a sad, emotional kind of tragic scene. 

Craig: I don’t remember exactly how it happened. I don’t think that this is how it happened, but I do know that Susan was turned in the book. So she was, she was lost.

Maybe I’m wrong. I don’t remember how it ended, frankly. I do remember that it was that frame, you know, where they, they did come back and it seems, and then, so Ben tells mark, like there will be more of. And, and so, you know, we’re left thinking that they are just going to be 

Todd: devoting their lives. Yeah.

They’re like the van housings of the Stephen King world, you know? Yeah. So it’s Again, a very anticlimactic I’m with you on that a hundred percent. I was so disappointed in the ending. I was just how easy it was. I mean, it just like, oh, okay. Now we’ve all finally figured out they’re vampires and they’re up at the, at the house, let’s all go to the house and stake them and then they do.

Craig: Yeah. W w and, and it’s unfortunate because, you know, we talked yesterday or last time we talked about how, you know, there was so much setup and I, I assured you that the second part was better. And I do think that. Better. There’s, there’s more action. There are more scares in there. You know, I think there’s a lot of stuff going on here that is really spooky.

The vampires are scary. They’re scary looking. They’re a menacing presence. Just the notion that this is spreading so fast and, and Ben describes it, you know, he’s like, it’s, you know, first there’s one, then there’s two, then it’s two times two. Then it’s four times four, like 

Todd: exponentially. 

Craig: Yeah, it’s a disease.

I mean, it’s just spreading like a disease. And, and that idea in and of itself is, is frightening. And so I enjoyed the second movie. The ending is just, it’s a little lackluster like it at the end, I was like, oh, how stupid I hated it. But. It was a little lackluster, which is, which is too bad because overall, I think that this is a pretty good movie for a made for TV movie from 1979, not bad.

It’s pretty good. No, it’s not bad at all. And, and it’s, it’s atmospheric and it’s, it’s pretty faithful to the source material, which I also enjoyed. It’s not amazing. Love it. I, I wouldn’t cite it as one of my favorite movies though. There are, you know, film directors out there who do, but it’s a good story.

It was remade in the nineties again, as a made for TV mini series, Rob Lowe start has been, and I don’t know who else was in it, but I’m sure lots of notable people, because that was the 

Todd: trend. Turn to Salem’s lot. Or was that a true 

Craig: remake? This was a true remake. There was a, another movie called return to Salem’s law.

I don’t know. I don’t know anything about it. I do know that this mini series was so successful that they consider. Extending it to like a Sierra series. And it just didn’t happen. But yeah, th th there was returned to Salem’s lot. Then there was the, the made for TV remake that, you know, follows the original story.

And that there’s a new remake in the works right now. I mean, it looks like it may be done directed by. Yeah, directed by Gary Doberman. Who also wrote the screenplay, not a lot of super recognizable names. Aside from Alfre. Woodard is in it playing a character. I don’t remember, I’m looking at the IMDV page.

And one of the things that I really like about it is that it’s far more diverse than this movie. I don’t think there’s a single person of color in this entire movie. 

Todd: Oh. Not even a slightly like in the background or something 

Craig: in there. Yeah. So it’s, it’s nice to see a wider variety of. People 

Todd: far from a lack of diversity, the the town policemen has never heard the word chow before.

Apparently I loved that little scene was so cute. Bye. Ciao, Constable 

Craig: ciao. Ciao. That’s a familiar Italian 

Todd: expression. Meaning 

Craig: goodbye. I didn’t know you were Italian. I’m not the word is while you learn something you’ll ever be.

Well, you learn some more every day. Yeah. So I don’t know. I mean, that’s, I, I don’t have a whole lot more to say about it. It’s fine. I’m glad that we got around to doing it. I think it’s worth talking about, I think it’s worth seeing it’s not going to knock your socks. But especially if you’re a Stephen King fan or if like us, you were a fan of these event, many series from the, you know, especially like the eighties and nineties, it’s what you would expect it to be.

And it’s nostalgic. And I overall, I enjoyed it and I would 

Todd: say too, if you’re looking for something with a mixed crowd, or like, like maybe watch with your family, if you have younger kids, Some of the imagery in here would be pretty frightening for a kid who’s a little too young. She might have to deal with some nightmares, but ultimately it’s pretty tame as far as it’s not graphically showing anything.

And it is well paced so, or slow, slowly paced, I should say. So. Yeah, it, it would be a good option perhaps to a watch with. With a family sure. As it is so well, thank you again for listening to our episode. If you enjoyed it, please share with a friend. You can find us just by searching two guys and a chainsaw podcast where we have our Facebook page or Twitter feed website, too guys.

Don’t read 40 nine.com. Just leave us a comment. Any one of those places, we also have a page. Paige patrion.com/chainsaw podcast. If you enjoyed what you heard today, please consider supporting us over there. And we have some freebies for you. An exclusive interview, some mini sites that we put out a couple of times a month, and also access to the edited versions of our recordings, as well as some influence over what movies we’re going to do next, we just take our requests and we fold them over there to decide which one we’re going to do next until next time I am Todd, and I’m Craig, with Two Guys and a Chainsaw.


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