Monsters: Season 2, Episode 15

Mr. Swlabr (28 Jan. 1990)

TV Episode  -   -  Horror
5.5
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Ratings: 5.5/10 from 23 users  
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A boy discovers a toy in a cereal box that miraculously comes to life as a mischievous reptile.

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Title: Mr. Swlabr (28 Jan 1990)

Mr. Swlabr (28 Jan 1990) on IMDb 5.5/10

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Cast

Episode cast overview:
...
Mrs. Barton
Robert Oliveri ...
Roy Barton
Danielle Ferland ...
Barbie Barton
Rockets Redglare ...
Swlabr (voice)
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Storyline

A boy discovers a toy in a cereal box that miraculously comes to life as a mischievous reptile.

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Horror

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Release Date:

28 January 1990 (USA)  »

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Just add water
3 June 2009 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

A young boy who is abused by his family gets revenge on them thanks in part to the prize at the bottom of his cereal box...

"Mr. Swlabr" does not really feel like a Monsters episode at all. It feels more like a live-action version of a Saturday morning cartoon from the corny music to the one-dimensional aspects of the villains all the way down to Mr. Swlabr himself. This is one episode in the series that you can definitely watch with your children. In fact, it seems aimed at them more so than any other episode.

The plot is more cutesy than even "Parents from Space." There is no horror, blood, guts, or gore. The action is all very benign mostly with people just getting humiliated rather than killed or hurt. It's never really explained why Roy is forced to live in the basement or why his mother and sister are so rude to him. It's hard to understand why he is so afraid of them either; they never really do anything to him. It's odd that Mr. Swlabr constantly refers to any liquid refreshment as "Lick-em-up." I also found it strange that the mother would keep kegs of dandelion wine down in the basement right next to her son and the ending didn't offer much resolution.

Everything about the episode is cheap. There is one only set and it looks really cheap. With the possible exception of Roy, every actor hams it up so badly that this episode should have been sponsored by Oscar Mayer. Sadly, the cheapest looking thing in the episode is Mr. Swlabr himself. For most of the episode, he is just a puppet and he looks likes something you could buy for your kid from the Wal-Mart toy aisle.

The one thing that kept me from giving this episode an even lower score is that I did enjoy Mr. Swlabr, as over-the-top as he was. The fifth-grade level insults he dishes out at Roy's family provide some much needed comic relief which keep this episode from being totally boring. I also found it bizarrely comical when he started drinking the dandelion wine. Other than that, I feel this episode would have been more successful as a cartoon.


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