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The Last Call blog: The Last Drive-In | Season 6, Week 1 — Tribute to Roger Corman “Bucket of Blood” and “Deathstalker”

Drive-in legend Roger Corman was live from the West Wind Drive-In at last year's Jamboree.
The Last Call blog: The Last Drive-In | Season 6, Week 1 — Tribute to Roger Corman "Bucket of Blood" and "Deathstalker" 1
Art by T.J. Denton (@TDenton_1138 on Twitter) — visit his store!

It’s taken a few years, but the sixth season of the show actually gave us the first sequel in Last Drive-In history.

Not talking about sequels to flicks here – we have, after all, all seen sequels to Halloween, Silent Night, Deadly Night and Phantasm over at the trailer to name three.

But we’d never really done it on an episode — until now.

Longtime LDI followers’ll remember that in the last episode of Season 3 — the everybody-trapped-in-a-cabin season where Yuki had to set up satellite-o-vision and that concluded with the original Little Shop of Horrors and Humanoids From the Deep — the King of the Drive-In, Roger Corman showed up.

Well, back at the Jamboree last October, an event with which I was, ahem, intimately, involved (my wife knows about it, don’t try to get me in trouble), Roger Corman made his return with his wife, Julie. Besides being welcomed with open arms, chants and cheers by the Mutant Family assembled at the West Wind Drive-In in Las Vegas, they got better Hubbies and they both regaled the Mutant family with an overview of their Hollywood careers filled with longevity, creativity and ingenuity.

Roger, as you know, could be walking down the road in El Lay with some friends, duck into a cafe and then have an amazing flick idea after a few minutes of coffee and conversation. Then he’d go out, get his stuff together and flipping do it.

And that’s how we got the first flick of the night, the solid and somewhat short Bucket of Blood. With berets, beatniks and Dick Miller in his most well-known role as hapless busboy turned celebrity sculptor Walter Paisley, the accidental death of a trapped feline escalates just a bit to where we get these totals.

After the conclusion of Bucket, Bruce Dern, yet another legend from the Corman School of Getting Stuff Done, surprised us all with an appearance and reminisced about Hell’s Angels run-ins, professionalism on a Corman set and other wild encounters from his career, capping off a heartfelt tribute with the Cormans leaving the stage to chants and shouts of thanks for all they’d done.

The second feature, of course, was the legendary four-star Deathstalker with garbonzas, loincloths and extras doing dangerous stuff for not a lot of money — there’s a reason it’s called production VALUE, you know.

Personally with all the craziness that happened in Deathstalker, you theoretically can put it above some of its contemporary sword-n-sorcery stuff. It has a bit more action than the first Conan flick (though nobody’d say that Rick Hill can outclass Arnold the Barbarian’s performance or body). It’s definitely better than Yor, the Hunter From the Future in many areas, excluding soundtrack, and definitely better than the Ator flicks.

Check out these totals and see if you agree…

And thus ended a night for all to remember — and to note, if you wanted to cap off the rest of the loaded night that we experienced at the drive-in that night, the flicks shown after Deathstalker were Wild Angels, The Trip and finally The Tomb of Ligeia.

How do I know? I was there!

The Last Call blog: The Last Drive-In | Season 6, Week 1 — Tribute to Roger Corman "Bucket of Blood" and "Deathstalker" 2
The volunteers kicked much hiney — you might recognize some of these folks and I left an “l” out of Amanda’s last name…sorry!

Next up — it’s Easter. Might we see some wabbits? Sources say, it’s likely.

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