Town of the Living Dead – Episodes 7 & 8

Town of the Living Dead (Screen: Syfy)

Town of the Living Dead reminds us this week that both romance and fire have the potential to burn, but only one will send you to prison and destroy a barn.

Recap

Romance in the name of the game in episode 7 (“Zombie Stunt Double”) of Town of the Living Dead. Brian sets up Terry with another gay man in town because, hey, sexual orientation is the one and only thing two people need to have in common to build a successful relationship, right? Right1? In other romances, Chase and his mom’s disturbingly close relationship is still going strong, much to the annoyance of everyone else involved in filming.

Chance is back, y’all! The pyromaniac hero from episode 2 is back for episode 8 (“Zombies with a Chance of Fire”), and he’s brought a convicted arsonist2. The convicted arsonist clarifies that he isn’t a “fire expert” but rather a “fire enthusiast.” Because that’s better. Trap, our fire enthusiast, claims to be qualified for the job of setting someone on fire because he’s taken fire safety courses – state mandated fire safety courses because of “a few incidents.”

Film school thoughts

There’s a reason that stunt performers go to stunt school and exist as a profession. There’s also a reason that an entire field exists in the film industry that deals with specific effects related to pyrotechnics. Tina and her crew do not agree with the previous two sentences. This is why they get frustrated when firefighters do not tell them how to set a person on fire. Tina, sweetheart, when you can’t find any professionals to help you with a fire stunt, delete the stunt from your script. DO NOT hire a convicted arsonist to be in charge of setting another human being on fire. Why?  Because that arsonist, despite claiming he didn’t do it, will set a barn on fire – a barn which you do not have the money to pay for.

Stop digging; we’ve struck gold

Chase has a crippling fear of heights. Well, it’s not so much a crippling fear so much as it’s a fear that makes him fart up a storm. Regardless, he decides that he can’t jump out of a second story window, and he has his mom tell Tina that he’s not going to do it. Chase feels badly about chickening out of his stunt in episode 7 so he agrees to be set on fire in episode 8. Chase’s face as the convicted arsonist prepares him to be set on fire is priceless. The best part, though, is when Chase muses that he hopes his fear farts don’t make his being set on fire worse.

Bless your heart

Poor John. I can see the light in your eyes going dull. Rather than being excited about filmmaking, you’re no longer able to lie to yourself convince yourself that you’ll be able to fix your film in post production. Sure, some continuity errors might be fixed in post with a good editing program. You know what you can’t fix in post production? Getting two different people to play one character. Let me clarify: you can’t get two different actors of two completely different body types and of two different races to play the same character. You also can’t have one shot contain three actors, cut to a different angle with just one actor, then cut back to three actors. But, in your defense, counting requires math and math is hard. However, the best “light going dull” moment was during the scene where you set Chase on fire and took a moment before calling “action” with an apathetic look on your face. If you can’t dig deeply enough to care that one of your lead actors and semi-friends is suffering during and after a shot for your film… then, your movie might actually get better. Forget what I said earlier. Keep up the good work, buddy.

Best quotes

Chase [in the middle of a panic attack over a stunt]: I think I just piddled3.

Chance: Watching things burn gets in my soul. It’s just something you have to be born to do. Fire’s one of these majestic things that’s pretty glorious. A lot of people don’t like it, a lot of people get scared about it. Me, myself, and I, I LOVE fire.4

John: Let’s just get it from behind. There’s no other way to get it5.

  1. shockingly as predicted, this date does not go well – mainly because this random dude, Brandon, is not gay.  
  2. “convicted felon” translates to “seasoned professional” in Alabama, apparently  
  3. sadly thankfully, there was not a shot of his shorts after that statement  
  4. court transcript courtesy of Doc Brown, who attended Chance’s arson trial in 2018  
  5. that’s what she said  

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About Becca Marshall 36 Articles

Becca has been writing about film and television since convincing her junior high English teacher that comparing and contrasting the film and stage versions of Romero and Juliet was a good idea for a term research paper. After getting her BA in English and film studies, she doubled down on liberal arts and got an MA in television, radio, and film from Syracuse University. Becca is incredibly proud to be an Aggie and entertains her non-Texan friends with Southern colloquialisms. Her hobbies include watching Golden Girls and her interests include all things zombies – she’s simple, not basic. Email: becca@whatelseison.tv

  • John M. Ware

    Have you ever watched an episode of ANY show made in the 80s, David Hasslehoff never did any of his own stunts it was a skinny guy in a bad wig. The intention of the different stuntguy was a tongue in cheek nod at shows of the 80s that we love so much. Just watch the flick before you say stuff won’t work or better yet get out from behind your computer and you do what we have done 🙂 but thanks for watching.