Wednesday, August 12, 2015
Every Haunting Hour Ever #6: The Red Dress
Original Airdate: January 15, 2011
Director: J. B Sugar
Nice is good mean is bad! Don't be mean 'cus mean is bad! Nice is better than mean! Wait. This isn't the Malcolm in The Middle episode where Lois punishes the boys mercilessly because she thinks they burned her red dress? OK then. I guess I'll just go right to the story.
Jamie (Linda Tomassone) is a lowly country club worker who will do anything to look like a glamorous rich girl. When she stops by a local thrift shop called "The Raven's Chest," she accidentally steals a beautiful red dress -- and soon learns the hard way that nothing in life is free.
One of the things that I enjoyed about the episode was the tense atmosphere. Since this episode focused on someone stealing something, it does its best to capture the feeling of "getting something for nothing". Basically, this feeling is like an adrenaline rush. Your heart starts to beat rapidly, you become very nervous, and you want to get out of there as fast as possible. Once a blind woman that stalks the main character for taking the dress is added into the mix, it becomes a very intense episode to watch.
Another thing I enjoyed about the episode was that it does a great job at adding meat to what is essentially a bare bones plot. For one thing, the main character has another motivation for keeping the dress outside of wanting to impress a boy. For example, throughout the episode, it's heavily implied that Jamie is a poor girl that has patches on all of her clothes and has to work her summer away. With this dress, she can feel like a rich person and be happy, even if was for a short period of time. I also think that making this type of plot into a horror story actually works to the episode's advantage. I've seen this sort of plot many times as a comedy story but very rarely have I seen it done as a horror story and because of this, it kind of gives the episode a sense of uniqueness.
However, the one issue that plagues this episode is that it still manages to use some cliches that come with a "Girl wants to impress boy for special event" plot. For example, there is a girl named Stella that Jamie competes against for the boy's affection who of course is given little to no personality outside of "Snobby rich girl". Though, as much as some of these cliches piss me off, Stella is barely in the episode as she appears in only one or two scenes that barely go over a couple of minutes.
Overall, The Red Dress is a rather decent episode to watch. To be honest, when I first saw the plot summary to this episode, I thought it was going to get my blood boiling. However, it did manage to surprise me and surpassed the expectations I had for it. Unlike another episode that I'll be reviewing soon, it actually feels like there's some real effort at putting a new spin on an old plot.
Overall Grade: B+