Picks and Pans Review: Masters of Horror

updated 11/07/2005 AT 01:00 AM EST

originally published 11/07/2005 AT 01:00 AM EST


Showtime (Fridays, 10 p.m. ET)

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This 13-part anthology of hour-long stories directed by gore masters like John Carpenter and Tobe Hooper starts off well—and repulsive enough to give Leatherface a drool-choked chuckle—with an episode called Incident On and Off a Mountain Road. Directed by Don Coscarelli (Phantasm), it's the story of a woman tortured by a sadistic lunatic known as Moonface, who looks like Frankenstein with Michael Stipe's head. What Moonface does to his victims is loathsome and unspeakable. Which means Coscarelli is only too glad to show you. What gives Incident sick dramatic kick is a perverse tension between sexism and feminism (see the lady rig traps using her under-things) and flashbacks showing her previous torments with a survivalist-nut husband. Horror isn't my thing, but this is pretty good.

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