From Aaron Martin

Slasher – Season 1, Episode 8: “Soon Your Own Eyes Will See”

Chiller’s Slasher
Season 1, Episode 8: “Soon Your Own Eyes Will See”
Directed by Craig David Wallace
Written by Aaron Martin

* For a review of the previous episode, “In the Pride of His Face” – click here
Screen Shot 2016-04-16 at 2.22.50 PMThe finale of Slasher‘s first season begins in a very Michael Myers-like way, as we follow the masked culprit up through a house, into the bedroom of two parents – Alan Henry (Rob Stewart) and his wife Suzanne . It’s little Cam Henry wearing a creepy pig mask. He’s sleepwalking, wetting the bed. While his father is more understanding, mom is a very angry, unhappy person whose shaming of her son is despicable. She berates him over and over, calling him a “baby“, until young Cam sends his mother flying down the stairs to her death. Whoa.Screen Shot 2016-04-16 at 2.23.19 PMSmash cut to adult Cam Henry (Steve Byers) hanging out with Sarah Bennett (Katie McGrath). They’re carving up a pumpkin, having fun like two old friends should. But Cam tries to lighten things up, speaking of hope, speaking to her as more than a friend. Alan shows up and things get awkward. She’s still obviously sceptical of Father Henry. Only for the wrong reasons. How much does the priest really know about his son nowadays?
At Sarah’s gallery there’s an influx of business, for Halloween and also surely due to her recent appearance in the news for all the madness in Waterbury. Robin Turner (Christopher Jacot) shows up to try convincing her to do a little partying for Halloween/her birthday. Maybe not the best idea, but who knows what is at this point.
Meanwhile, Cam and Alan have bit of father-son time. They talk of wives, mothers. Father Henry warns of rushing into anything “unseemly“, though, his boy brings up the nasty secrets nobody else knows about, which then gives way to an almost-fight. The deterioration of Cam is now evident even to his own father. So Alan goes looking, he searches and finds the box – the one with all those souvenirs of The Executioner’s killings. I wonder if Alan will do something, or if he’ll only cowardly look on in terror.Screen Shot 2016-04-16 at 6.03.22 PMLater on, Dylan (Brandon Jay McLaren) shows up at the gallery, too. She isn’t impressed immediately with his sudden change of heart, having given up his stake in the case, and so on. Not impressed at all. And neither is Cam, who watches on from across the street. He meets later with his father at the church. Alan is visibly distraught, he starts talking about Cam’s mother, then he casually starts to bring up the murders. “But you broke mans law, Cam,” he says. He offers to help his son. Only Cam’s not sure that’s the best option going forward. The Executioner in Cam comes out, as he then chokes his father to death in the middle of the church. A brutal, personal kill, which will only serve to knock Cam off balance even further now.
In the paper Dylan writes an editorial about losing his wife. He confesses for the sin of Pride. Uh oh. Might not be the best thing to do right now, tempting The Executioner. At the same time, Sarah hears Dylan out a little, and they start to mend their bridges. He actually seems sorry, and tries his best to make her see that. Perhaps some hope for them after all. That is, if Cam doesn’t do something terrifying first.
Sarah packs her life up to get the hell out of Waterbury. In a bag belonging to her husband, Sarah finds the little box with The Executioner’s souvenirs. A plant by Officer Henry.
So now her life is even worse. Plus, Cam starts to confess his feelings for Sarah. And then the worst: they make love against the wall. Afterwards, though, she doesn’t seem too happy about her decision.
At the station, The Executioner himself interrogates Dylan, whose situation gets worse by the second. Such dirty irony. I dig how the writing has given us this last episode to sort through things. Already there’s the realization of Cam being the killer, even prior to this episode with the revelation at the end of the previous episode. Watching everything unfold now in the finale is very fun. Everything becomes more tense when Sarah discovers some old memories, one including a picture of Cam holding up a picture of his GLUTTONY drawing. Yikes, that would be creepy even if he didn’t turn out to be a serial killer.

 

 

 


Now with a renewed mission Sarah is, typically, in the dark, looking for clues at Cam’s place. She finds a bloody sink, a large knife, as well as the remnants of Alan – a hand, his priest collar. Then instead of calling 911, Sarah sets off with the big buck knife in her own hand. Will she search out The Executioner and bring a taste of his own medicine along for the ride?
Simultaneously, Robin is throwing a big party for Halloween. He makes an emotional yet inspiring speech for everyone and gets the place pumping. When Sarah shows up she goes straight for Cam. She lures him outside with a suggestive look, some sweet eyes, et cetera, and that hooks him. She manages to stab Cam brutally, but Robin comes along and also gets knifed in the chest. This sets us on a nice slasher cat-and-mouse chase.
Down the Halloween-y streets goes Sarah, trying to stay ahead of Cam. She gets inside, tries to make a call. Except Cam is too fast. Upstairs, she makes it into a room. A big, strong Cam prepares to break down the door. Dylan comes out of nowhere to try saving the day.
But Cam overpowers Dylan, and before Sarah can make it to the door Cam grabs hold of her, planting the knife in her chest, almost right in the neck. As she bleeds, he scolds himself for ruining “everything” all the time, like a teenager. One of the creepiest scenes yet sees her bleeding out on the floor, Cam laying next to her recounting the first he saw her. So sickening, in the best sort of horror way. Managing to down him for a moment, Sarah locks the door and goes to kill Cam. Her husband tries talking her out of it, saying “Youre not a murderer“, but she wants to be done with the legacy of The Executioner. So husband and wife set about killing him, wiping away his awful deeds. For all those sins of murder, Cam suffers through a vicious stabbing. One of the most savage stabbing scenes of any I’ve ever seen, honestly. Over and over she gives it to him. Also, a nice subverted end for a slasher to have these two do him in that way.Screen Shot 2016-04-16 at 6.19.56 PMScreen Shot 2016-04-16 at 6.36.16 PMScreen Shot 2016-04-16 at 6.36.31 PMWe skip to a month later. Dylan, Sarah, and Robin stand outside the house, hoping to see someone else take the place eventually. Off to a new life head Dylan and Sarah, free of The Executioner, both the original and the copycat.
Screen Shot 2016-04-16 at 6.38.32 PMShowing off the house, Robin leads a new family around. Around the side their little girl goes to play with a cat nearby. She cracks its neck with a chilling, almost orgasmic joy. “This house feels perfect,” she tells Robin. Maybe Waterbury will be seeing another massacre, eight or ten years down the road. Awesome little finish.
Screen Shot 2016-04-16 at 6.39.49 PMI loved this series. It wasn’t always prefect, but it offered a lot. Both played into the slasher sub-genre, as well as subverted it at times. Above all, I kept guessing. Even at times where I believed I knew who The Executioner was, things kept happening to keep that ball rolling. Excited to see another season, hopefully Chiller will go ahead. It’s supposed to be a different story every year, so if that’s the case I’m hoping they’ll find an interesting way to do a Season 2.

 

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Slasher – Season 1, Episode 6: “The One Who Sows His Own Flesh”

Chiller’s Slasher
Season 1, Episode 6: “The One Who Sows His Own Flesh”
Directed by Craig David Wallace
Written by Aaron Martin

* For a review of the previous episode, “Ill-Gotten Gains” – click here
* For a review of the next episode, “In the Pride of His Face” – click here
Screen Shot 2016-04-02 at 9.30.45 AMScreen Shot 2016-04-02 at 9.31.07 AMAfter the twisting turning episode previous with the revelation of Captain Ian Vaughn (Dean McDermott) having Ariel Peterson (Hannah Endicott-Douglas) in locked room in his basement, this next episode opens five years previous.
He picks her up from the side of the road. She gets in thankfully. Obviously the biggest mistake she could’ve made. Vaughn used his power and position of authority in Waterbury, the trust of that, to get her inside the car. And things start to get really scary after that. I mean really scary. Vaughn morphs into this completely different person right there in the car with her. I knew there was something off about him, but never expected this at all.
In the present day, he lays in bed with her. She’s obviously got not life, stuck in that room. The whole thing is beyond disturbing. But she may be working out a way to escape, somehow, some way.Screen Shot 2016-04-02 at 9.33.41 AMWhile Vaughn’s got his own thing going on, Sarah Bennett (Katie McGrath) borderline accuses her husband Dylan (Brandon Jay McLaren). We can’t really count him out yet, though. Can we? Well Sarah is busy talking with Cam Henry (Steve Byers). They’re sussing out all the mysteries of the Peterson case, or as much as they can, anyways.
For now, we’re privy to more of Vaughn and Ariel. Their entire situation is insanity, of his making. She wants out, as well as out for her little boy.  He’ll have no part of it. Soon enough she pulls her blade on Vaughn and stages a hopeful escape. Putting him down with a can to the back of his head she and her boy run. Only the doors are locked, naturally. A setup such as that means Vaughn has got all his bases covered, especially considering he’s a police Captain. His wife witnesses the escape, and does nothing. One shocking, heavy moment.
Sarah goes to see Tom Winston (Patrick Garrow), mostly to tell him he’s not her father. Although, he is adamant – “Youre my daughter.” Meanwhile, Dylan’s out meeting with Lisa Ann Follows (Enuka Okuma). She wants to reel him in. He’s got his own bigger ideas.Screen Shot 2016-04-02 at 9.45.08 AMAn interesting part of this show now heading into its last few episodes is the unraveling persona of Captain Vaughn. He sends Cam home off duty, which will only likely prompt more of Sarah’s little investigation. But Vaughn goes to see the prostitute Marjorie who Cam and Sarah were talking to earlier. Seems Margie’s eager to keep secrets for the ole Captain. For his part, Iain gives his lady friend a present. A nice ride on some electric veins. A real hot shot. Continually now, we witness more of the becoming of Vaughn. His hand is now being forced further and further. Despite his terrifying nature, he’s not even The Executioner, is he? So does that mean The Executioner will be coming for him some day soon?
In jail, Winston finds himself fighting a tall, brick shithouse of a man. He does all right. Until possibly getting his head stomped on.
One creepy scene sees Vaughn pull up to Sarah on the street, much the same as he did with Ariel five years before. Such an eerie moment; he even makes her get in the backseat. He’s got his back against the wall a little, too. There’s an edge to their conversation. Would he even dare to try abducting Sarah? Is he that mentally unstable at this point? She definitely pushes her luck in that respect, having a free flowing conversation with Iain. And then, like those years ago when he picked up Ariel, things get creepy.Screen Shot 2016-04-02 at 9.58.14 AM

Youre an idiot for getting in this car


They have a little discussion, on the Seven Deadly Sins, Sarah’s intentions moving back to Waterbury. Vaughn claims she’s guilty of Pride. Their whole ride together is so tense. The writing is great, even the acting – I love McGrath in this series, not necessarily a huge fan of McDermott, in anything, but here they’re excellent together.
When he takes her out to some dump, she ends up slipping into the woods. Now Vaughn’s whole act is really undone. He’s let a victim get away. This can’t mean anything good for his little family at home.
At the Vaughn household, Cam arrives, Sarah in tow. Things are definitely starting to break down now. An entire facade is washing away. When Iain’s wife leads them to his “man cave” they discover Ariel and her boy. Heather (Erin Karpluk) reunites with her daughter, and that’s one shining bit of brightness in it all.
Winston wakes up in the hospital ward, and Sarah’s by his side. They’re entering a new phase of their relationship: “No more lies.” She flat out asks why he killed her parents, a bold step.
But what about Iain?
He’s off readying a boat, headed elsewhere. Instead of purging himself with fire.
That’s because someone else is poised to do that for him. Unable to escape the watchful eye of The Executioner, the now fugitive Captain Vaughn is trapped inside a coffin, stuck in the crematorium for his sins of Lust. He burns alive in the oven, screaming for help, as a morgue attendant sits outside eating his lunch. Yikes.


More Executioner next week. This was an intense episode, maybe one of my favourites yet. Looking forward to the penultimate Season 1 episode “In the Pride of His Face” next week. This series has gotten a lot better after several episodes, really hit its stride. I hope the finish will be packed with amazing and wild revelations.

Slasher – Season 1, Episode 5: “Ill-Gotten Gains”

Chiller’s Slasher
Season 1, Episode 5: “Ill-Gotten Gains”
Directed by Craig David Wallace
Written by Aaron Martin

* For a review of the previous episode, “As Water is Corrupted Unless It Moves” – click here
* For a review of the next episode, “The One Who Sows His Own Flesh” – click here
Screen Shot 2016-03-26 at 9.12.28 AMAfter June Henry (Jessica Sipos) was taken by The Executioner in the finale of last episode, left in a large open field, her naked body covered in honey, this episode of Chiller’s Slasher continues with two women in that very field discovering June’s body.
This is one of the grisliest murders yet. Amazing practical makeup effects that draw a heavy visceral reaction.

 

 


When Sarah Bennett (Katie McGrath) and husband Dylan (Brandon Jay McLaren) arrive at the Henry home to give support. Creepily, Father Alan Henry (Rob Stewart) appears jovial, almost happy. Then Captain Iain Vaughn (Dean McDermott) arrives to give Cam Henry (Steve Byers) the bad news – they’ve found June’s body.
At the morgue, Cam breaks down a little, yelling at his father. Clearly his grief is overwhelming, whose wouldn’t be at a time like that?
Meanwhile, Dylan’s on television with his boss Alison Sutherland (Mayko Nguyen) being interviewed by Lisa Ann Follows (Enuka Okuma). It seems as if Dylan is a bit too into it, while his boss isn’t enjoying things at all.
Simultaneously, Father Henry’s back giving supposed religious council to Tom Winston (Patrick Garrow). Their relationship is very, very curious with every passing episode. Then there’s Sarah and Robin (Christopher Jacot) speculating on the possibility of Alan Henry being involved with The Executioner murders. They know Cam’s place, where Alan stays, has been tossed by police, but they wonder about his other house – the church. So they go poking around, naturally, in true slasher horror sub-genre fashion. What come across are a hammer, nails, a “murder kit“, and likely one meant to be used for crucifixion.

 

 


Over at the newspaper office, Alison isn’t pleased with Dylan, as she finds his showboating a little much. But, even if it’s sleazy, he is just doing his job, being what’s he supposed to for the role. And Alison, she’s busy hacking into June Henry’s text messages.
Sarah does her best to comfort old pal Cam. Only, she doesn’t comfort much. She has questions about the relationship between Alan and Tom, revealing her thoughts about the latter orchestrating The Executioner murders from prison. She tells Cam about finding the apparent murder kit at the church. The two good friends fall apart, calling each other suspects, going back and forth with accusations – even Cam throwing Dylan’s name in the ring – and really burning their friendship to the ground. Either way, Sarah’s adamant Alan’s hiding something, to which Cam replies: “Dylan is too. Id bet my life on it.
Screen Shot 2016-03-26 at 9.26.19 AMFather Alan arrives at the gallery. He tells a little parable of a woman going to confession, ill-spoken words, feathers, and all sorts of things. Essentially, it parallels with what Sarah’s been talking of, suggesting things to Cam about his father. A chilling, ominous bit of dialogue between Sarah and Alan reveals he may know more, about the past and the present, than he’s revealed so far.
Big break in the newspaper. Texts from June to Trent, vice versa. Alison claims they were “emailed” to them, but we know the truth. Follows is sniffing around for more stories, more publicity, more, more, more. Then the divide goes further between Alison and Dylan, as Lisa wants more focus on one of them. And the topic is sex, so naturally Follows wants him on; she’s obviously into him. Sarah isn’t pleased at all with Dylan and his paper either. Yet there he goes, on television again. Alison turns the tables and tries speaking directly to The Executioner live, which of course pisses of Dylan and Lisa, for different reasons.
Then, in the dark of the evening, Alison walks to her car and hears her name whispered quietly from somewhere nearby, a letter under one of her wipers: an invitation to meet with The Executioner. Uh oh.
Captain Vaughn and Sarah come up against one another. He’s pretty insulting towards her, even while she’s only trying to dig out the truth. But she’ll get things figured out, one way or another. Craft one, that Sarah.
At the foundry, Alison prepares a very official-like setup for her one-on-one with The Executioner. Is she expecting too much? Well, things get underway. The Executioner gives up information that only he would be able to know, in order to satisfy Alison’s curiousity whether it’s actually him (or her). They proceed to have a little chat, about all things Seven Deadly Sins. The killer asks if she has anything “weighing” on her, straining the ole conscience. And she walks away unscathed. For now.
At the office again, the competition between Dylan and Alison now rages, with Ms. Follows hoping to “build a special” around the footage Alison got of her clandestine interview. Lisa’s suddenly much more interested in the bosslady. Because she only cares about ratings, and who can get ’em.Screen Shot 2016-03-26 at 9.37.04 AMScreen Shot 2016-03-26 at 9.41.17 AM

We all sin. Every day of our lives, we sin.”

Screen Shot 2016-03-26 at 9.42.33 AMHoping to circumvent Cpt. Vaughn, off goes Sarah to the Mayor’s office – Ronald Edwards (Booth Savage). She blackmails him to get the tapes found in her parents house after the original murders, even calling him “grandpa” re: the affair he’d had with her grandmother. Amazing little scene, and shows how tenacious Sarah is when it comes to digging for the truth.
We get more about Alison now as a character. Turns out, she precipitated the suicide of Benny Peterson (Michael Vincent Dagostino), husband to Heather (Erin Karpluk), by doing some e-mail hacking, throwing suspicion on Benny for possibly having something to do with their daughter’s disappearance. Wow. Even more, Dylan lurks around the bar where Alison meets Lisa, and there’s even MORE trouble afoot than before. So many layers.
Robin and Sarah continue sleuthing. They follow Father Alan. He meets with a woman, clearly a dominatrix, and she crucifies him to a wooden cross, as he shouts: “Father forgive me!” Holy shit. Alan’s developed a sadomasochistic interest.
In other news, Alison is headed off in a limo. One driven by The Executioner, as it turns out. Back to the foundry once more. No interview this time. Seems she has something weighing on her conscience after all, like we saw in her meeting with Lisa. Bye, bye, Alison.Screen Shot 2016-03-26 at 9.50.52 AMFinally getting her hands on the tapes of her parents, Sarah sits through some their homemade porno, forcing herself, trying to discover something, anything.
Then she sees Tom in a video with her mother.
In a restaurant, a couple hipsters sit chatting. One of them bites into an onion ring; an onion ring that turns out to be an ear. The police later discover her deep fried head in one of the boiling vats. Dylan’s already snooping around, which doesn’t please Cpt. Vaughn. It’s clear there is more to Dylan than we know. I want more of his backstory to come out, and it will soon. I’d like more on Vaughn, too. He isn’t the typical police character, he isn’t dumb.
But quickly, in the finale we get more of Vaughn. He has a locked room in his house. Inside, he keeps Ariel Peterson (Hannah Endicott-Douglas). And a boy, too. His son, apparently. What a whopper of a finale! Very Josef Fritzl-ish. Wow. Can’t wait for more. Vaughn is obviously not at all who he structures himself to be in the outside world. There are far more secrets to Slasher yet to be discovered.Screen Shot 2016-03-26 at 9.54.49 AMScreen Shot 2016-03-26 at 9.56.49 AMThe next episode is titled “The One Who Sows His Own Flesh” and I’m excited. The revelation in this episode was intense, and there were a few amazing scenes that make things even murkier than before. Who is The Executioner? Who are all the citizens of Waterbury, really? Let’s find out together.