The Hell-o-ween special began with a flashback. On August 18th of this year, Joe Bob Briggs made a panicked phone call.
“Why are you calling me? Just text me!” is Darcy’s annoyed response.
He responded, “I suck at Halloween! And the stakes are so high, last year we had Elvira!” And on he ranted, moaning about the pressure on a horror movie host (or a “cheap horror movie host” as one of the evening’s letters called him).
Doubting his ability to deliver on Halloween, he asked Darcy if she could plan the upcoming Halloween special, decorate, book the films and the guests, all the things. She agreed.
Back in the present, Joe Bob arrived at the set ready to film the Hell-o-ween special and discovered the trailer looking like an explosion at a Spirit Halloween story. Darcy was luminous in orange and several viewers noted on social media that Halloween 3 Jack-O-Lanterns dominated the scenery. Darcy promised a very special guest to come.
Since Darcy’s film is about demons, she arranged to summon a demon for the evening. It was a familiar form of evil: Danhausen in demonic form. Though, as a minion of the father of lies, he wasn’t very helpful in answering questions about demons, and Joe Bob couldn’t trust any word he said.
Danhausen served Joe Bob and Darcy a special European demonic liquor, turning Joe Bob into a Danhausen look-alike. Danhausen seemed to take over The Last Drive-In – but he didn’t hold it for long. He had a date in Aspen.
The first feature was Demons 2, the 1986 sequel to 1985’s Demons (which was featured in Shudder’s original Last Drive-In Marathon). There is a very short story about the creation of the film. Demons opened and made a whole lot of money, so work began immediately on a sequel which came out seven months later.
On social media, people were wondering whether they would be able to keep up if they hadn’t seen the first Demons film, but this is very much a case of what Joe Bob calls, “Not too much plot to get in the way of the story.”
Demons was about demons going on a wild killing spree in a movie theater. Demons 2 (Demoni 2 in Italian) was about demons going on a wild killing spree in a German condominium building. Writer/director Lamberto Bava (son of horror master, Mario Bava) did provide the film with some amusing characters to battle the demon, especially the gym’s personal trainer, Hank (played by Bobby Rhodes, who played a pimp in the first film), who puts the demons through quite the work-out.
As for those drive-in totals?
All Hallow’s Eve
Maybe it’s just me, but for the second feature, I felt like Joe Bob was channeling his inner Laurie Strode, a Halloween babysitter trying to give his charge, Darcy the Mailgirl, the best darn Halloween he could.
So he did all the things. He wore a costume that matched hers (Cowboy Ken to go with her demon-possessed Barbie. He also brought Halloween-themed popper toys for a competition. There was pumpkin carving and bobbing for apples, but most importantly, Joe Bob brought a really scary film that Darcy could tell about the next day, to the other kids who had just watched Hocus Pocus again.
The movie was the horror anthology All Hollows’ Eve.
This film, written and directed by Damien Leone, is a sterling example of Joe Bob’s “just make the film” exhortation to filmmakers. Leone first conceived of his character of Art the Clown for a short back in 2006. He used him for another short, The Terrifier, in 2011. Producer Jesse Baget caught that film on YouTube and asked Leone if it could be a part of an anthology film, which Leone agreed would be a good idea – if he could make the whole film. Art the Clown is in two of the three short films as well as the framing device in the film (a demon coming out of a TV screen, ala Demons 2).
Joe Bob asked Darcy if she thought Art the Clown had reached icon status to stand alongside Jason Voorhees and Michael Myers. She said she thought Art was still a “baby icon,” but growing up fast. (FWIW, Art is played by Mike Giannelli in All Hollows’ Eve, but he would later be portrayed by David Howard Thornton in the Terrifier films.)
As the Drive-In totals testify, many parents would not be happy with their sitter showing their child this film:
The night came to a rousing conclusion with a Costume Dance Party, with a very special appearance by none other than Fart the Clown himself!!!
Dean Anderson, shown here with his lovely wife Mindy at Joe Bob’s 2023 Jamboree at the West Wind Drive-In in Las Vegas, joined as a contributor to Joe Bob’s website after admirably serving as a camper liaison and a minister of hospitality to the guests and the Mutant Family during the event. Check out the long adventure he and Mindy took across the country that was chronicled on their blog www.deanandmindy.com. Email Dean at email@example.com