In the early 1990s, HBO’s Tales From The Crypt was a horror anthology that I was clearly too young to be watching without parental supervision. I didn’t care. The short tales of murder and monsters were ever so fun, and occasionally campy. The Crypt Keeper would make terrible puns, and I would stay up past my bedtime to watch stories about nine-lived magicians and butt steak. Life was good.
And now, the show is getting a reboot. Tales From The Crypt will be the wrapping paper for a two-hour horror block coming to the TNT network. The new series is said to follow the original comics by William Gaines, as well as offer completely new tales. It will not be a remake of the HBO television series.
In fact, horror news site Bloody Disgusting cited a “trustworthy insider,” stating that the Crypt Keeper will not be part of the show, but will instead feature an old man with a cane as the narrator. Why? Because apparently the Crypt Keeper is a property owned by HBO and is not a part of the EC comics. This is the part where I throw my hands up in frustration and wonder if I should even bother. The Crypt Keeper was the soul of the show. He was iconic. And I wuvved him.
If you’re wondering how M. Night Shyamalan and his famous “twists” will be involved, TNT president Kevin Reilly stated that Shyamalan will “most likely” direct the first episode. The block of shows will also feature other short-and-long-format stories, ranging from comedy horror to straightforward terror. Shyamalan will executive produce the content, but all of it be under the Tales From the Crypt brand umbrella. Shyamalan stated, “to be part of such a beloved brand like Tales from the Crypt, something I grew up watching, and to also have the chance to push the boundaries of genre television as a whole, is an inspiring opportunity that I can’t wait to dive into.”
Shyamalan has had his ups and downs when it comes to the success of his storytelling. So exactly how much influence will he have on the series? Probably not as much as you think. Executive producers tend to serve as supervisors for multiple projects. They make major decisions about shows, but are rarely as deeply entrenched in the narratives as writers are. Shyamalan, however, is actually a pretty good fit for the franchise. No, he’s not known for being campy, or gory for that matter; however Tales From the Crypt stories are notorious for having ironic twists. Who better to handle them then the guy so famous for twists that Robot Chicken turned him into a meme?
There are still a lot of questions left to answer: Will Danny Elfman compose a new opening theme song? Will the show have as long a list of celebrity guest stars? The original series drew in some big name talent including Dan Aykroyd, Daniel Craig, Hank Azaria, Whoopi Goldberg, and Demi Moore just to name a few. With the show being on TNT rather than a premium channel like HBO, will it still have the blood and gore from the original series? Yeah yeah, they already said it’s not a reboot of the old TV show, but I want to know what I have to look forward to.
Get ready, kiddies. TNT’s new Tales From the Crypt horror block will launch this fall.
Featured image credit: HBO