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The Last Drive-In | Season 5, Week 1: Lucio Fulci Night — Zombie and The Beyond

The Last Drive-In Season 5, Week 1: Zombie Joe Bob Briggs fights a shark. Art by T.J. Denton (@TDenton_1138 on Twitter)
Art by T.J. Denton (@TDenton_1138 on Twitter). Check out his online store!

Live from Grapevine, Texas, it was the Last Drive-In premiere! Or should I say, The Late Drive-In?

Boy, it sure was a shock to some people’s systems when the lawn chairs, cinder blocks and red cooler were dispensed with for a week and instead we got a talk show set, a plethora of guests and Joe Bob and Darcy doing the old Johnny Carson and Ed McMahon routine.

You could almost compare said uproar by some to getting a splinter in an uncomfortable place like Olga Karlatos, did in our first of two four-star features from Lucio Fulci, the Italian (or is that Eye-talian?) classic Zombie.

Can I get a “Hey-o!”?


Well, it’s been assured that the Mutant star-studded premiere show complete with flippin Fabio Frizzi as the show bandleader that we saw isn’t going to supplant the koozie-in-hand, mini fridge hooked up to an extension cord with electrical tape on it that may or may not pass an inspection for a curious Tarrant County trailer inspector who happens past setting that JBB has done across three channels. Also, Fabio couldn’t hang out in Texas that long, anyway.

So let’s revel in the fact that we got the star of the first flick featured, Ian McCullough, to talk about his time working on Lucio Fulci’s Zombie and how the mean maestro was a terrible boat captain.

Then Danhausen showed up and nicely and somewhat evilly did not curse the folks on the show.

Then Felissa Rose ended a long absence from TLDI proper (yes, she was last seen dispensing matrimonial advice of a dubious nature back in Vegas), but she didn’t have any mangled dicks to talk about, instead participating in a skit about the dreaded Stuffit Airlines where you better hit the toilet before you hit the tarmac, otherwise you’re gonna pay.

Bobcat Goldthwait did a set (I’m going to have to check out his Bigfoot flick Willow Creek in November now when we do our typical Wilderness Peril month in The Screening Room). Peaches Christ finally got the eyeliner she needed from Darcy to appear on stage, and alleged snakehandler David Dastmalchian narrowly avoided getting choked out (or worse) by a big boa constrictor.

If you wanted variety, there it was!

As for the flicks, the show delved into Fulci for the second and third times (House By the Cemetery was the first) with the previously mentioned Zombie with that triumphant spectacle of the zombie vs. shark sequence and some of the sickest and slickest neck-munching you’ll see this side of Savini. Still though, when good ol’ Wormeye A. Conquistadore was rising from the dirt, not sure what was stopping Susan from screaming her head off and running the heck away. And second, that last part with the DJ narrating his own demise — “They’re coming in … ahhhhhh!” is kind of a clunker.

Here are those totals:

The Last Drive-In | Season 5, Week 1: Lucio Fulci Night — Zombie and The Beyond 1

That was followed up by Fulci’s surreal, stylish and strange classic The Beyond when Lucio thought it appropriate to switch it up by having the woman’s eyeball popped out by a nail from behind rather than gouged out by a giant splinter in front. And while not without its WTF moment — David Warbeck forgetting that to kill zombies you have to shoot them in the head after killing a half-dozen of them by shooting them in the head never fails to infuriate me when watching it.

Here are the totals:

The Last Drive-In | Season 5, Week 1: Lucio Fulci Night — Zombie and The Beyond 2

I have it on good authority that these flicks won’t be the only zombies we see this season, thus the undead shall rise again, I reckon.

Next up: Walpurgisnacht the Second, meaning we’re ready for the witchy deviltry that comes from being all pagan about things. Enjoy!

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