Saturday, February 25, 2012

Monster Squad!...Revenge

This is a LoEB post~

          Sometimes being a pop-culture blogger has its perks. Recently I got to experience a great example of these. I was given a semi-private screening of select clips and a trailer to a new film; a sequel to one of my all-time favorite childhood movies. The Monster Squad. I went in (having been burned by 80’s sequels and remakes, too many times to count) and left blown away. I’m going to do my best to summarize what we were shown, and I hope it fills you with the same Nostalgic Spooky Excitement that I’m still feeling! I bring you; “Monster Squad! Revenge.”


          Following the events of the original “Monster Squad” the group was riding high on their incredible victory over evil. The friends grew closer than they had ever been and life seemed to have gone back to normal. As the years went by however, some of the members went on with their lives, settled down and put the horror behind them. Others were not so lucky. Shortly after the marriage of Eugene and Phoebe, the gang began to drift apart. After school, Rudy began to manage the family hardware store. He settled down with his high school sweetheart and they were blessed with a son and daughter. He continued to keep in touch with Horace, Eugene and Phoebe.

          Aside from the supernatural novels that he now wrote, Eugene didn’t have anything more to do with Monsters.

          Sean and Patrick were never able to stop chasing the shadows that haunted their lives. Sean went into, what you might call, the “family business” enrolling in the police academy straight out of high school. Convincing Horace to do the same the two stay strong friends and after graduation became patrol partners. Sean never married and soon began to throw himself deeply into his new fight against “evil”; distancing himself from everyone in his life, even his best friend Patrick.

          Patrick went down an even darker path convinced that everything that had happened to them could happen again; he believed that the only way to prevent it, was to remove the darkness from society as a whole. To separate the evil from mankind once and for all. He knew that science was the only answer to the terror that magic created. He began to study the scientific roots of evil; the genetic defects that created serial killers and other monsters of humanity. Though almost completely isolated from mankind his search led him to someone who seemed to be a kindred spirit. A London botanist named Dr. Wilfred Glendon. Glendon had published several startling papers on a method that he believed could separate the man from the monster. Through correspondence, Patrick learned that the good Dr Glendon would be visiting the US for a conference and incredibly he agreed to meet with Patrick. After the meeting, Glendon confessed that while he believed he held the secret to creating a world free of evil, the strong regulations of the British Public Health System prevented any possible tests from moving forward. Desperate to continue the project, he had actually traveled to the states in the hopes of finding a research partner and possibly…a test subject. Patrick agreed without hesitation to help and soon they were working everyday until nightfall (at which time the Dr would disappear.) At last, after months of research the day came to test the formula. Surprisingly, Glendon scheduled the test for late evening. Patrick noticed the Doctor acting strangely as he prepared the chemical but did not question him. At last he began to give Patrick the series of injections he believed could remove all traces of evil. While he waited between each injection he began to tell a story; of his own inner monster and his attempt to quell the beast within.

          He ran across the papers of a brilliant young scientist. A student of human nature and the human mind, who himself sought to end evil and madness once and for all. Though the experiments failed to deliver the desired results, they proved to be more successful than he could have ever imagined. And the story proved something else to Glendon. Evil is strong. Stronger than human nature. The idea of trying to somehow defeat it is pointless. The true victory lies in embracing the evil and becoming comfortable with the monster inside yourself. If nothing else, this young scientist, this Henry Jekyll proved that. Patrick realized too late that he was being injected with Jekyll’s serum and that the entire thing had been a lie from the start. The final injection had been administered and night had fallen.

          Before Patrick could even react he saw a familiar thing start to take place. The Doctor began to transform into a werewolf. His last words before the beast replaced his speech with a roar was; “If humanity is to survive; we must evolve. Those of us who do will destroy the weak. Soon we will all be monsters, and those who aren’t will be foooood aaarrrrghhhhhh”

          Patrick stood frozen by the creature that now stood before him, until he was suddenly doubled over by a pain like nothing he had ever experienced ripping through his body. Soon the pain became a sort of pleasure, like lightning in his veins. He felt a cold and comforting presence surround him and he became alive, he became evil, strong and huge. He became Hyde.

          The trailer begins at the scene of a terrible fire. Several police officers are retraining one of their own; detective Sean Crenshaw. Sean is franticly fighting the cops and trying to get back into the engulfed building. He just keeps screaming Horace and eventually has to be taken to the ground. Later after a 3am phone call. Sean’s sister Pheobe arrives to pick him up from the emergency room. Over a pot of coffee in her kitchen, Sean tells her a story more horrible than anything she’s faced in a long time. Horace is dead. The official police report will say that he died in a fire during a search of a warehouse said to contain a drug manufacturing operation. But that was not how Sean’s partner and lifelong friend died. He was dead before the fire even started. It was vampires. Three women…he knew the look of them. He could not forget the way a vampire moved…the look in their eyes…the stench.

          The smell of death and blood and cold filled both of their nostrils as soon as they stepped into the building. Acting on an anonymous tip they were only there to investigate what they thought was an abandoned meth lab. They didn’t expect to find anyone there. They certainly didn’t expect it to be a trap. About halfway inside an explosion ripped through the building, part of a flaming wall came down feet away from Crenshaw. The two now separated Sean had to watch in horror as three women, clad in white, descended upon Horace. Though he was a highly trained cop he had no time to react before the three were on him and in front of his partner he was ripped apart. Sean fired on the three woman but as he expected, it had no effect. Overtaken by smoke and flames he made his way out of the building, hoping to regroup. By the time the first responders arrived on the scene, the building had began to crumble. No one was willing to try to recover Horace and no one would believe his ranting.

          They were back. Somehow, the monsters were back and they were after them. Somehow they knew and they wanted revenge. The following week brought the funeral of their fallen friend and the long overdue reunion of the once strong group. After the services, the gang began to walk and discuss. They listened to Sean’s story and they believed it. Patrick remained different. distant…changed. Though the company of his friends made his heart a little lighter, the constant feeling that he was being torn in half, was stronger than ever. He knew he had to help them and he knew that in order to do so he had to rid himself of Hyde. He had to find the Werewolf Dr. Glendon and destroy him. Patrick had TWO monsters to kill, but he had to kill them on his own. He didn’t want to put his friends in that kind of danger but he could also never tell them what he had become. Without even knowing where they were going, Sean led the group to the former home of “scary German guy”… Gustav Meyrink.

          Meyrink had died 20 years prior but his home had never been disturbed. On the day of his death, Sean received a letter in the mail labeled with instructions to only open it if they were ever in true danger. He knew that there was never a better time than standing in front of his house on the first day in which the gang… The Monster Squad, was finally reunited. The letter was extraordinary it thanked each of them by name for everything they had shown him about the continued strength of the human spirit. He had told them once that he knew about monsters. While he had meant the terrible days of the Nazis, that was not ALL he had meant. He had known of another monster. From his earliest days, his family spoke of a strange secret kept only to the family. A supernatural force that could be summoned or created to defend them in the face of overwhelming adversity. That creature was The Golem.

          The family chose, in the face of Hitler’s rise, not to create their protector…to depend on the basic goodness of people. He had known it was a mistake and vowed, on the day, to never allow that mistake to happen again. He had no children to pass the secrets of the Golem to but he had grown to feel as though the Monster Squad was his family. He knew of no better people in which to share such a grand secret. He had, unknown to them, left the Squad his home and all of his worldly possessions. After the defeat of Dracula, Gustav had worked day and night on the construction of a protector who would help them defeat the darkness, should it ever rise again. Deep within the walls of his home was the body of the Golem and the means to bring it to life.

          The Monster Squad stood together on the threshold of a new war. There had already been a casualty before they even knew the battle had begun. Some of the team had never thought that they would ever again fight monsters. Some had never stopped fighting. This time things seemed different. Less innocent. More personal. The daughters of Dracula seemed unwilling to underestimate the team as their father had done. Would the behemoth known as The Golem be enough to turn the tides of this fight? Stronger still was the threat from the monsters they didn’t know. The mad Dr Glendon had long since stopped becoming a beast only at night. His ruined mind had set it’s sites on a revenge to befall all of humanity and his first victim Patrick, one of their own, had already become his first victim. The monster inside himself, day by day was quickly overtaking him; down to his very core. The Daughters of Dracula, The Werewolf of London, Mr Hyde and the Golem. This wasn’t like the movies anymore.

          It’s time for this “damn club” to prove what it’s REALLY made of.

          Unfortunately we will all have to wait for the film to find out what happens to the gang but based on the premise, the new “Monster Squad” is going to be a true rollercoaster ride. Finally a sequel to a beloved 80’s property that isn’t going to rip the heart and soul out of the original. I’m not one for the hysteria involving the midnight release of a film but I plan on being one of the first in line at my local movie house when this gets released! I sincerely hope that all of you join me in proving, with our dollars, that this is the kind of filmmaking we want Hollywood to give us. The kind of thing that takes our nostalgia and cranks it up to eleven. Buy your tickets and go see “Monster Squad! Revenge.” That is…if you’ve got the gnards.


  1. Nice pick! I would love to see a Monster Squad sequel!!

  2. Thanks Christopher. Considering the way Hollywood is, maybe it's for the best that we never see one. still, we can dream...