Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Shows You Should Be Watching: Holliston (2012)

There are many words to describe filmmakers Adam Green and Joe Lynch. Writers…Directors…Producers…and now…Sitcom Stars. Yes, Sitcom Stars. That’s right, the men who have helmed some recent brilliant horror films such as Hatchet and Wrong Turn 2 respectively, now star in their own horror-themed sitcom that airs exclusively on FEARnet with new episodes airing every Tuesday at 10:30PM ET. 

Adam Green and Joe Lynch star as Adam and Joe, caricatures of themselves if their careers did not take off and were still struggling to make it in the industry. As hosts of The Movie Crypt, a late-night horror cable show, they constantly dream of having one of their ridiculously titled horror films (Shin Pads - like Hard Rock Zombies but with Mexican soccer players) financed and finally make it as big time filmmakers, leaving their little New England town of Holliston, Massachusetts  in the dust. In the meantime, they work at the cable station for their boss Lance Rockett, played by a very Twisted Sister-esque and cross-dressing Dee Snider, who fronts a local Van Halen tribute band and still thinks it is 1984. He is not the worst boss they could have by any means, but they are always largely unsuccessful in uncovering his true sexual orientation no matter what questions they toss his way.   

To call them the prototypical “odd couple” would be absolutely correct, except that Joe and Adam are more like hybrids containing many of both “Oscar” and “Felix” characteristics. Joe is “Felix” when it comes to romantic relationships and Adam is “Felix” when it comes to adult responsibilities. However, the script is flipped when it comes to being “Oscar” as Joe is absolutely awful when it comes to making common sense decisions and Adam is hopelessly a wet mop with women especially when it comes to his ex. While Joe has a great relationship with his gal Laura (Laura Ortiz), Adam has been pining over the love of his ex-girlfriend Corri (Corri English), who has just come back to Holliston with a job in the medical field. She might be completely over Adam, but he keeps trying nonetheless to win her back any chance he gets to some hilarious results. 

When Adam retreats to his bedroom for some much needed solace in each episode, he is visited by Oderus Urungus of Gwar, who plays Adam’s imaginary friend that lives in the closet. Sometimes Oderus’ words are full of wisdom and at other times are somewhat brutally truthful, but never of any real help at all. But he consistently appears when Adam is feeling low just to kick him further down the ladder even though his intentions mean well, sort of.

As solid as our four leads are to driving the show to success, Snider and Oderus make for welcomed secondary characters that give the show more of a bizarrely comedic edge. Add in some cool cameos from horror icons, such as Tony Todd, who steals episode four entitled “Candyman”, Bill Moseley as well as Kane Hodder, and all of the casting ingredients are there for a success. 

Contrary to some fiction being spun on the ‘net, Holliston is not a show just for Adam Green “fanboys” nor is it solely targeted to horror fanatics and alienates other demographics of non-horror viewers that will not enjoy it. None of those factors could be further from the truth. Sure there are some horror references that might fly over more subtle fans of the genre, but nothing that will affect the enjoyment or comedy found throughout the show. This could play on network TV, if some of the gore was toned down, and would be appreciated by anyone who enjoys situational comedies overall as well as horror diehards. 

Also, Green casting himself and Lynch were great moves, even though you might be cautious about those casting choices going in. Both guys are so effective on screen that sometimes you forget you are watching Green and Lynch the filmmakers and are watching two funny scrubs starring in a low budget sitcom. You might not think at first that they could pull it off, but it is amazing how well they actually do it. But don’t be surprised if they break the fourth wall sometimes with jokes that mock the digs usually heard from Adam Green haters or deliberate in-show commercial ads that remind you that you are in fact watching a low budget TV program that needs sponsors to fund the episodes. It is all very reminiscent kind of the constant advertising jokes executed in Return of the Killer Tomatoes, where the actors break character to plug sponsors so that they could get the funding to finish the film we are watching.

One last reminder - a new episode appears on FEARnet every Tuesday at 10:30PM ET, so make sure to check it out if you have the On Demand channel. And if you haven’t yet, you can check out past episodes now on FEARnet on demand or iTunes. 


Mister Bones said...

Loved the first season of Holliston, too bad it was only 6 episodes. But at least they got the go ahead for season 2, I can't wait.

The Man-Cave said...

Bones - can't wait for season 2 either, which I think will be 8 eps.

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