Creepshow: “Stranger Sings/Meter Reader” Review

Over on Shudder, their 61 Days of Halloween celebration keeps on going with another episode of Season 3 of Creepshow!

This latest episode featured two great stories that featured some amazing practical effects and truly bizarre stories!

Stranger Sings
Creepshow 2Directed by Axelle Carolyn, Written by Jordana Arkin

What begins as your typical meet cute at the beginning of any romantic comedy veers into dark monster horror territory.  A shy physician goes home with a woman he meets at a shop.  Initially he turns down her invitation out of his own awkwardness, but when he hears her song, something compels him to come in, almost supernatural.

Once inside, he makes a horrifying discovery.  Aside from a mutilated body in the bathtub, he finds that he’s been lured into a siren’s lair (hence the song earlier).  They demand that he perform a surgery to swap voice boxes so that one siren can pass her voice to someone else to live a normal life.

Creepshow 3
The last thing you want to see at a potential romantic partner’s house (other than finding out they have a spouse).

After reluctantly agreeing, he successfully performs the surgery, only to find the monstrous new siren ready to devour him.  Much to his surprise, the former siren whom he made a normal person rushes in to save him and asks him for that date he wanted at the beginning.

The interactions at the beginning come off genuinely sweet and cute, with many people easily able to relate to how awkward their interaction is.  What makes this story fun is how it takes the formula of a romantic comedy but puts on a monster spin.

Plotwise, it’s pretty straightforward, but it features some amazing monster design for the siren herself.  Coming from Greek mythology, it’s not a monster you see represented too too much in modern day horror, so it made for a fun little story.

Creepshow 4
It wouldn’t be Creepshow without some awesome monster designs!

Meter Reader
Creepshow 6
Directed by Joe Lynch, Written by John Esposito

Very often the charm we get from Creepshow stories is their simple, straightforward camp.  And while that’s not at all the case with this story, it may be one of the most intriguing ones we’ve seen thus far.

Creepshow 9
Opening with “bring out your heads” is very hard to top!

In a story that could easily be a feature length film, we see a world ravaged by a global pandemic (sound familiar?).  However the virus that’s spreading is more demonic in nature.  So a man who travels around performing exorcisms runs into a particularly power demon that manages to infect him.

Meanwhile, his family awaits his return, fearing that he may have become infected.  His wife holds on to hope, while his teenage daughter suspects the grim truth.  After he does return (infected from the demon) she not only has to defeat her own father, but go on taking his place fighting the demonic infection around the world.

Creepshow 8
Honestly there’s enough material here for her to spinoff into her own movie.

Where to begin with “Meter Reader”?  In only 20-odd minutes, it manages to do a tremendous amount of worldbuilding, and create an atmosphere that’s both post-apocalyptic and incredibly relatable.  As the family talks about what it will be like for things to return to normal once the pandemic is over hit harder than perhaps anything on Creepshow has before.

The great thing about horror is its ability to take real world issues and extrapolate to supernatural proportions in order to explore ideas.  And that’s very much what happens here. We can all relate to having to be cooped up at home for an extended period of time, afraid to go out.  And this story lets us work through that collective societal trauma, while still in the “safe” realm of horror with demons, exorcisms, and Mad Max inspired wastelands.

What did you think of this week’s episode?  What do you hope to see next week?  Let us know in the comments!

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Creepshow is streaming exclusively on Shudder

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