Welcome back to the Hellbound Halloween and the first film in sort of interlude. See, the last two films in the Hellraiser franchise are their own kind of bad, so I need to take a short break before wrapping this all up with them. But that gave me an opportunity to check out some of Mr. Clive Barker's other films that are tangentially related to the Hellraiser series, starting with 1990's Nightbreed.
I can understand the logic behind wanting to make a knockoff movie. Something is popular, so some would want to get on the bandwagon before interest dies down. But CORN is just... confusing. Sure, there's the 2020 Children of the Corn prequel/reboot, but apparently only 10 people saw it and I'm not sure if it will ever have a digital release (trust me, I've spent a lot of time looking into it). And as I have said multiple times, Children of the Corn is nobody's favorite horror franchise. But it's okay! Because CORN's plot has absolutely nothing to do with anything resembling the plot of a CotC film! So why is is even called that? Well...
Hellraiser: Hellworld is a real turning point in the Hellraiser franchise. Not only is it a bad movie in itself that was filmed back-to-back with Hellraiser: Deader, but it's also the last time that the incomparable Mr. Doug Bradley would play Pinhead. What a completely lackluster ending to such an iconic performance! It's actually a little sad, and exhausting in a way I can't really describe. I'm sure I'll figure out my feelings by the time we reach the end of this installment of the Hellbound Halloween.
There's something about franchises--particularly big horror franchises--where it sure seems like each one has a film that just refuses to stick in my head. I wrote about Children of the Corn: The Gathering just last year, but even then I still only remember the barest of details without looking at the post. Something about a fever...? In that same vein, was it Leprechaun 2 or Leprechaun 3 where he was at a pawn shop? And A Nightmare on Elm Street 4: The Dream Master is just a total blank to me. The point being I've seen all 10 Hellraiser films before, but had no memory of what the hell Hellraiser: Deader was about. But now I've rewatched it and can safely say that I'll most likely forget every detail of this boring movie--again--by next month, if not next week.
I don't want to come off as some sort of movie snob or purist. There are many different ways to tell a story, and sticking to a rigid structure is not always the best course of action. Case in point, Hellraiser: Inferno was a detective mystery that had some Hellish aspects, and I think it worked. But I guess Miramax thought they could try the same formula and create another interesting movie out of a script previously unrelated to the franchise. But no. Hellraiser: Hellseeker sucks and I hate it. Welcome back to the Hellbound Halloween. We're officially in the bad half of the franchise.
Whoa! We're halfway there! The Hellbound Halloween continues with the fifth movie in the Hellraiser franchise, Hellraiser: Inferno. This is the first film in the series not to be released in theaters, and also the first where it's really, really obvious that this was originally an unrelated script before the cenobites were tacked on. As a result the execution is... polarizing. It's a very strange movie, but I think I can safely say it's the best Silent Hill film yet!
So you might notice that I have not ascended to godhood. While I did correctly guess that What If...?'s eighth episode would be titled "What If Ultron Won?" I was wrong about the title of the final episode. It's actually titled "What If the Watcher Broke His Oath?" which is definitely a better title, so I'll take that loss. Everything in the first season has been leading up to this moment, as well as something in the second season! Let's wrap this up!
I fuckin' called it! Hell yeah! Sure, we all pretty much knew what this episode would be about, but I got the title exactly right! Granted, the number of titles it could've had was limited. But still! "What If Ultron Won?" is the name of this episode, and I got it exactly right last time. Now, if next week's finale is titled “What If It Took a Multiverse to Save the Multiverse?” then I shall transcend the mortal plane and become a god.
Tag caught my attention the first time I read a summary of it and thought, "Holy shit, are they fucking serious?" Before I get to what made my jaw drop, I want to specify which Tag this actually is. It's not 2018's Tag about grown men playing a game of tag. It's not 1982's Tag: The Assassination Game with Linda Hamilton. It's not even 2015's Japanese Tag where heads explode. No, this is 2015's American Tag--or 2012, or 2014, or 2016 depending on which site you check--where McLovin gets sucked into one man's plan to spread HIV to as many people as possible.
A lot of What If...? comic stories are total downers. A bunch of real bummer buzzkills, bro! But why can't everything just be chill for once? Sometimes it's just nice to have an alternate reality that doesn't harsh my vibe. I'm running out of incredibly dated slang, but the gist is that "What If Thor Was an Only Child?" is essentially a frat bro comedy about Earth's biggest party ever, and the party poopers who are ready to nuke the site from orbit.