Creepshow 1×05: “Night of the Paw/Times is Tough in Musky Holler”

Shudder’s Creepshow
1×05: “Night of the Paw”
“Times is Tough in Musky Holler”

* For a recap & review of Episode 4, click here.
* For a recap & review of the Season 1 finale, click here.

“Night of the Paw”
Directed by John Harrison
Written by John Esposito

Father Son Holy Gore - Creepshow - Night of the Paw - HitwomanA man crashes his car, flying off the road. He’s being pursued by the police. At the moment he’s in a right mess: he’s got a branch stuck in his side and his handle is mangled to a bloody pulp. It’s actually not a man, but a woman called Angela (Hannah Barefoot). She collapses on the doorstep of Avery ‘Whitey’ Whitlock (Bruce Davison). He takes her in and does some horrific surgery.
He snips off a couple fingers and stitches her up.
When Angela wakes she remembers a man while picking up her ring, forced to put it on the opposite hand instead. She goes for her gun when Avery returns. She seems to have a sketchy background, carrying a silenced pistol. She doesn’t offer “a simple thank you” to the guy who saved her hand, rather than she does go on the offensive. Whitey attempts to talk her down. No sense in going anywhere with the roads flooded. Plus, he has an offer for her— “a gift that will make the very gods tremble.”

See, Avery willed this woman to his home tonight. It’s his “grand design.” Tonight is his dead wife Marjorie’s birthday. He feels tremendous guilt for something. He shows Angela a monkey’s paw that was smuggled from Mumbai. A spell was cast upon it. Supposedly the hand grants “three wishes.” Whitey talks about how his wife tried using the paw to help the dying business. She wished for money.
This brought wealth. Via death.
Avery wound up with money from an insurance payout with Marjorie died. Cruel fate.
Father Son Holy Gore - Creepshow - Night of the Paw - Monkey's PawAnd so Avery wanted nothing more than to have his wife back.
He prayed to God that she could return to him. When God didn’t answer his prayers Whitey turned to the paw. He wished Marjorie “back from the dead.” Soon he heard the whispers of his wife in the halls of their home. She called out to him for help. He felt her presence everywhere, until he saw her zombie corpse coming at him in a vision. This led him to realising she was alive, and she was trapped in that Premium Ever Rest he bought for her. He dug up her grave, and inside there she was: dead alive, maggots on her face. He cut open the stitches in her mouth so she could let out a death scream. They kissed once more. Yuck. Then she freaked out at the sight of the monkey’s paw, and he wound up beating her to pieces with a shovel, tossing her back into the grave. He laid her to rest all over again with the use of the paw.

Angela doesn’t believe the old guy’s story.
When the weather clears up, she’s ready to get back out there. She asks why she was brought there. Whitey asked the paw to bring him “a killer,” so she could put him out of his misery. She helped end the life of the man she loved. She’s not what you’d call a hardened murderer. Yet, still, she’s killed. Angela receives the monkey’s paw, but tosses it into the fire. Whitey grabs it, setting fire to himself. He begs to be shot, so she does, and the fire’s gone, as if it were never there.
And now the paw opens again.

Angela gets out of there, along with the paw. She goes to the morgue looking for her man. You know what she wants to do. She puts the ring back on his dead finger. She wishes for him to return to life. She’s accidentally brought the whole place back, to grisly results.
Father Son Holy Gore - Creepshow - Night of the Paw - Dead Alive Marjorie

“Times is Tough in Musky Holler”
Directed by John Harrison
Written by John Skipp & Dori Miller

Father Son Holy Gore - Creepshow - Times is Tough in Musky Holler - Time's UpA bunch of people are stuck in a cage. The mayor, Lester Barclay, and all the people who help with the so-called “good fight” have been turned on, like Deke, a cop, among many others. Apparently the whole town is against them and how they’ve been doing things. The mayor yells into a dark, barely lit hall trying to bargain with whoever’s keeping them in there. A woman called Lottie soon explains how things are going to go. She’s got a group of armed people with her. Lester talks a good game, though not good enough. Lottie is going to pay them all back for the mayor’s “reign of terror,” which included letting the police rape and murder, among other heinous acts attributed to the lot of them.

The town’s ruling class are getting a taste of their own medicine.
They’re all strapped into seats anchored to chains. Everyone’s terrified because they know what’s coming. Lester attempts bargaining his way out of this situation. He acts as if he hasn’t destroyed people and their lives. The mayor doesn’t have a leg to stand on. His and the rest of his friends’ destinies are written in stone.
I just did what I was told,” says one man, as everybody begins to be hoisted up.
Father Son Holy Gore - Creepshow - Times is Tough in Musky Holler - Triangle of DeathThey’re brought into place on a field, where their heads stick out of the ground in bloodied holes. They’re in a triangle together, video cameras pointing towards their faces. An announcer chastises the ruling class of Musky Holler and their “evil ways.” When the world went to shit, and the dead started rising everywhere, Barclay took over as mayor and ran things like a dictator, brutalising people, and making people believe he was the only one who could keep people safe, keeping them docile by way of violent force. This is why he and his friends are getting the vengeance they deserve. “You wanted me to do it,” he claims.
This triangle of heads is left to be chewed apart by zombies in a vicious game.
Father Son Holy Gore - Creepshow - Times is Tough in Musky Holler - Chewed Off FaceFather Gore wasn’t sold on the second segment until that last couple minutes. Wild stuff! As always, the great effects help, too. “Night of the Paw” was a great use of that old story, and Davison sold his role. Another fun episode in this wonderfully macabre series.

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