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EERIE INDIANA: THE COMPLETE TV SERIES

 



Eerie Indiana: The Complete TV Series (5-DVD Box Set)

Starring: Omri Katz

DVD Box Set Details: Remastered in 5.1 Surround Sound,  Instant Episode Access, Full-Motion Interactive Menus, Originally Released in 1991, Colour
No region encoding:
For global distribution
Number of Discs:
5

Episode Listing

Disc 1:

  • "Forever Ware"
  • "The Retainer"
  • "ATM With A Heart Of Gold"

Disc 2:

  • "The Losers"
  • "America's Scariest Home Videos"
  • "Just Say No Fun"
  • "Heart On A Chain"

Disc 3:

  • "The Dead Letter"
  • "Who's Who"
  • "The Lost Hour"
  • "Marshall's Theory Of Believability"

Disc 4:

  • "Tornado Days"
  • "The Hole In The Head Gang"
  • "Mr. Chaney"
  • "No Brain, No Pain"

Disc 5:

  • "The Loyal Order Of Corn"
  • "Zombies In P.J.s"
  • "Reality Takes A Holiday"
  • "Broken Record"
     

Movie:
Disc:
   
 

It's not exactly correct to describe the short-lived 1991 TV series, Eerie Indiana as X-Files meets The Twilight Zone for the tween set because Eerie actually preceded the X-Files by two years!

But since it first aired in the U.S. on NBC, Eerie Indiana's original 19 episodes have built a huge worldwide following with scores of fan web sites, a 1998 spin-off series, Eerie, Indiana: The Other Dimension, and a fervent fan base which lobbied for years to get the series released on DVD. Eerie was clearly as important and pivotal a series for budding Gen Y sci-fi fans as My So-Called Life was for Gen Y teen angst.

Thirteen-year-old Marshall Teller (Omri Katz) and his family have moved from his beloved New Jersey to the picture perfect town of Eerie, Indiana. But as the boy observes, Eerie is a strange town caught between the worlds of David Lynch and Tim Burton. Elvis lives on his paper route. Big Foot rummages through the garbage. And the neighbours are very, very weird. Marshall and his best friend Simon (Justin Shenkarow), like a prototypical Mulder and Scully, start to investigate the strange happenings in their town because Marshall wants to know why Eerie is the centre of weirdness. As Mulder would say, The truth is out there.

Also reminiscent of the junior Goosebumps series (for the pre-teen set?), Eerie Indiana has an impressive pedigree. Co-creator and writer, Jose Rivera, would later write indie film The Motorcycle Diaries. His co-creating and writing partner, Karl Schaefer, would go on to write and produce The Dead Zone. And giving the series a Danny Elfman-like soundtrack is Stephen King favourite, Gary Chang (Kingdom Hospital, Rose Red, Storm of the Century). Series producer and occasional episode director was Joe Dante (Gremlins, Explorers, Small Soldiers).

Even with rotating guest directors and writers, Eerie maintained an interesting atmosphere of unease thanks to the central theme of a young stranger living in a strange land. Series star, Omri Katz, narrates each episode with a pitch perfect teenage weariness. The writers had a lot of fun playing with sci-fi themes - everything from ghosts, werewolves and aliens to mysterious Chinese restaurants, Tupperware of the damned, lost souls trapped in the one-hour of Daylight Savings time, to an episode where Marshall finds himself starring on a TV show - as Omri Katz! Though this series is almost 14 years old, it doesn't feel dated. Production values and special effects are pretty good - much better than say cheapie Canadian location shoots, Sliders or Goosebumps - and the episodes are smartly written so that fans - new and old - can enjoy the strange tales of a boy stuck in a town he can't quite call home.

Best of all are glimpses of some familiar faces. A very young Tobey Maguire (Spiderman) guest stars in the episode "The Dead Letter" as a ghost. And one-time child actor favourite, Gabriel Damon (Robocop, Star Trek) shows up in "ATM with a Heart of Gold" along with Full House teen idol, Scott Weinger (Aladdin). John Astin (The Addams Family) and Ray Walston (My Favorite Martian) guest star in an episode about a teleportation portal - in the middle of a cornfield!

WORTH IT? Long time Eerie fans should be thrilled to finally replace their worn tapes with this clean digital transfer. Unfortunately, if you're looking for extras, you won't find them on this set - no commentaries, nothing. But it's an accomplishment in itself that a 14-year-old series was done well enough to have such an enduring fan base.

RECOMMENDATION: Definitely worth a rental for a weekend of weirdness or a Halloween marathon. And fans should snap up this set to replace their tapes.
 

- Harrison Cheung

 



 

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