‘The Damned Thing’ – A Masters of Horror Episode Retro Review

“It has been waiting.”

The Damned Thing is Tobe Hooper’s second contribution to the Masters of Horror collection, his first being Dance of the Dead. Although The Damned Thing was technically based on the short story by Ambrose Bierce (read our review of the short story here), the finished product holds no similarities to Bierce’s tale other than the concept of an invisible force whose aim is to destroy the residents in a small town in Texas.

Tobe Hooper is not known for being subtle when it comes to gore scenes.

The visuals in The Damned Thing do not disappoint and give a bit of a Lovecraftian touch. For those obsessed with blood and guts, there is a deliciously gruesome disembowelment scene along with a self-mutilation by hammer… definitely one for a pounding headache! To top that off, there’s also the tragic car accident, leaving a woman legless, just to name a few…

The Damned Thing was directed by Tobe Hooper (The Texas Chainsaw Massacre 1974) – one of the true masters of horror. Written by Richard Christian Matheson (The A-Team 1983) and created by Mick Garris (Masters of Horror series), the episode stars Sean Patrick Flanery (Boondock Saints 1999), Marisa Coughlan (Freddy Got Fingered 2001), Brendan Fletcher (The Revenant 2015), and the wacky Ted Raimi (Ash vs Evil Dead 2015).

The Damned Thing delivers a certain amount of suspense and an eerie feeling, along with some black humor. The acting is good, complemented by impressive special effects. The storyline is not bad at all and the characters are well rounded along with a good atmosphere.

One could say that the use of black oil is a metaphor for the gulf war – portrayed in this movie as the invisible force taking on the form of a giant black creature.

This apocalyptic tale is worth adding to your Masters of Horror collection and if you’re a fan of these, then it’s worth getting The Damned Thing for those stomach-churning moments!

About Samantha Françoise McCabe

Samantha Françoise McCabe is a Capetonian, South African born aspiring artist/photographer and editor who stems from a creative and artist background. She started as a Ballerina and dancer of other mediums, She worked in the film/media industry for a few years, starting as a movie extra and moving upward to producing an African Horror indie film with her husband, who is a British born director and author. She has a small art collection that is ever expanding and has a few years editing experience which involves conceptual art and conceptual writing for ongoing projects with her husband. Teamwork makes for an interesting concoction of creativity and the challenges are rewarding. Other than her art contribution to Brilliant Flash Fiction, she is a freelance literary editor and Intern at Dark Regions Press. Favourite books are written by Stephen King, Dean R. Koontz, Clive Barker and Steven Laws. The book that got her into the horror genre was The Devil’s End by D.A. Fowler. When it comes to cinema, Hammer Horror is on the top of the list.

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