The horror anthology has to be one of the trickiest things to get right. There have been countless attempts, some damn near perfect (Creepshow) some mediocre (Tales from the Crypt) and some just awful (Masters of Horror).
Mick Garris created Masters of Horror on Showtime a couple years back. The episodes were being written and directed by so called “Masters” of the genre such as John Carpenter, Stuart Gordon, John Landis etc. The episodes were mostly bad. So bad in fact that after watching the 4th episode of the first season I cancelled my Showtime Subscription. The second season didn’t fare much better. The series seem to allow the directors and writers to experiment a little too much and it often seem to hurt the episode.
This Year Garris and his crew packed up and moved the show to NBC, changing the name to Fear Itself. The episodes of Fear itself so far have been a little improved in the move. I imagine the reasoning for this is simple: Fear Itself is going to have to fight to stay on the air. Therefore the episodes have to appeal to wider audiences, be scarier, and provide conclusions that don’t piss off the viewer. For the most part it does seem to be working and the show has been more enjoyable with a few exceptions.
The most recent episode was the Zombie episode directed by Darren Lynn Bouseman (Saw 2, 3, 4, Repo!) and it was a fairly entertaining romp. The twist ending seemed unnecessary and very unbelievable. However for something that is fairly low budget they did a decent job of creating a Zombie apocalypse scenario.
It will be interesting to see if the series can keep up the momentum it does have and keep from becoming stale and boring. Either way its nice to have a decent summer horror series for once.