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There's nothing worse than an unfunny comedy and episode 22 of the
first series of MONSTERS is exactly that: a completely dreadful, and
totally lame, attempt at a comedy. The storyline, if you can even
describe it as such, sees a bored suburban housewife who comes into
contact with a minor demon (in human form, inevitably), who makes her a
deal: he'll make her famous if her soul is his.
Unfortunately the whole thing is played for laughs with the viewer asked to accept characters dressing up in Halloween masks and the like as the real thing. It's only of note today in that the main devilish character is played by Chris Noth, who later went on to find great popularity in SEX AND THE CITY. Sadly his acting is horrendous as is everything else about this lame, should-never-have-been-made episode.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
Monsters: Satan in the Suburbs is set in New York where failed writer
Xantipe Finch (Deborah Strang) owes lots of money & can barely feed
here young son Marty (Danny Gerard). One day a devil named Clancy
(Chris Noth) ask's her for help in writing his memoirs & making it a
best-seller, Clancy offers Xantipe all sorts of incentives but to
accept anything from a devil means you become one & Xantipe doesn't
want herself or her son to be devil's...
Episode twenty two from season one of Monsters this originally aired in the US during May 1989, directed by Warner Shook one has to say that Satan in the Suburbs is without doubt the worst episode of Monster thus far & is probably the worst episode of the entire show across it's three seasons. The silly whimsical fantasy based plot seems far more suited to Tales from the Darkside (1984-1988) with it's bizarre plot about a devil trying to persuade a women to write a book than Monsters which generally is far more horror orientated & by default far better in my opinion. Hopefully Satan in the Suburbs is a one off, the one rotten apple in the barrel as it were. Also even though it says on the IMDb that the devil is involved it's not, the devil who runs hell is never seen & it's just some sort of devil minion that looks like a normal guy in a woolly red jumper. Scary. There's also some moralistic nonsense about living life properly & earning what you have rather than just being given it but you probably don't want to know about that & the sickly happy ending doesn't help matters either. Look, this is terrible & there are far too many great episodes of Monsters to be wasting your time with Satan in the Suburbs.
The majority of Satan in the Suburbs is played out like some oddball drama & doesn't resemble anything even approaching horror. Most episodes of Monsters have some sort of monster or creature & most of the running time it's just some guy in a red jumper but when he gets angry towards the end he changes into a ugly demon creature that looks alright & is the only reason I'll give this episode two stars out of ten rather than one. This episode looks incredibly cheap with just one set, three actor's & no special effects apart from a latex demon mask for one shot, maybe the makers of Monsters had to save money on one episode & this was it. The cast are alright with Chris Noth gaining fame with his subsequent roles on Law & Order & the awful (words cannot describe just how much I hate it) Sex and the City TV show & films.
Satan in the Suburbs is a really bad episode of Monsters that feels different to the rest of the season & definitely feels like an unused script from the same production companies earlier anthology show Tales from the Darkside which is not a good thing. One to forget & ignore the reruns.
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