On The 3rd Day Of Halloween… 5 Masters of Horror Episodes To Binge Watch On Halloween

Masters of Horror

The closest I’ll ever come to a “discovering electricity” moment is learning that every episode of Showtime’s Masters of Horror series is on Hulu. Rejoice. When one door closes, another door opens. And that “one door” is most of the personal relationships in my life. The “another door,” again, is Masters of Horror on Hulu.

For those who don’t know, the series is a collection of short films, directed by some of the horror genre’s greatest minds, like John Carpenter, Takashi Miike, and Joe Dante. They’re perfect to binge watch, and what a better way to do it than on Halloween. We assume that our readers will be busy on Halloween night, drinking whiskey and throwing down, so here are five that you can consume before the festivities begin.

No.5 Incidents On and Off a Mountain Road

The first episode of Masters of Horror is also its most accessible. Directed by Don Coscarelli, the man behind Phantasm and John Dies at the End, it’s a good mix of slasher film and mystery, with a memorable villain that goes by the name of Moonface, and looks like a distant cousin to the Hills Have Eyes clan. The episode also features Angus Scrimm in a supporting role, and he steals the episode when he’s onscreen, as he’s prone to do. I would watch Angus Scrimm read the nutritional information off the back of a cereal box.

No.4 Cigarette Burns

Cigarette Burns

Ghosts of Mars is an unbearable experience for anyone who accidently rents it, thinking they picked up Brian De Palma’s slightly less awful Mission to Mars. But John Carpenter redeems himself with Cigarette Burns, which stars Norman Reedus as a rare films dealer looking to find a film that created a homicidal riot among the people who originally viewed it. From there, it’s a descent into hell.

One a side note, I’m surprised that Udo Kier stringing his own intestines into a film projector hasn’t become a famous gif, like the exploding head from Scanners. Someone needs to get on that. You’d be all like “This movies make me feel…” and then a loop of some Udo Kier self-mutiliation. Don’t disappoint me, Tumblr.

No.3 Family

Family is John Landis’s best effort since Coming To America and it features Cheers star George Wendt as a man who’s obsessed with keeping his family together, even if it means dressing up their skeletons and moving them around the house to continue his delusion. This one is both funny and creepy, and while I don’t really care for the overall plot, it’s worth it just for George Wendt’s performance, which is the best in the series.

No.2 Imprint


This episode was shelved before it ever aired because Takashi Miike delivered something to Showtime that Showtime felt was just too disturbing. Obviously, in hiring Takashi Miike, they forgot all about the “Takashi Miike” aspects of his personality. Like many of his films, Imprint is a fever dream of violence and eroticism and not only ranks as the scariest Masters of Horror episode, but as one of the scariest things I’ve ever seen. I love it.

No.1 Pick Me Up

Pick Me Up

Larry Cohen, director if such films as Black Caesar, It’s Alive, God Told Me To, and Q, does not get enough credit as a talented filmmaker. A bastion of independent filmmaking, Cohen provides his regular mix of shock and humor with Pick Me Up, the story of Wheeler and Walker, two dueling psychopaths who carve a trail down the highways they roam. Also, Michael Moriarty is in it, and his hammy speech about a gun turning a man’s head into “cherry pie” is amazing. Another very accessible episode with a twist at the end that doesn’t add much to the story, but is awesome nonetheless.

Honorable Mentions

Sick Girl
The Screwfly Solution

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