Tales from the Crypt—Season 2

8.0 Overall Score
Story: 7/10
Acting: 7/10
Visuals: 8/10

Fun stories

Sometimes a story is hit or miss, classic horror predictable twists


That’s good readin’

The Crypt Keeper is back with a whole new set of tales of horror and suspense.  As he takes you through his crypt of terror, you might even learn a bit about how he came to be.

Tales from the Crypt—Season 2 ran from April 21, 1990 to July 31, 1990 on HBO.  With eighteen episodes this was the longest season of the series.  The season did garner an Emmy nomination for William Hickey for Outstanding Guest Actor in a Drama Series in “The Switch”.


Arnold is here to Pump…You Up!

After a short first season, this season really erupts with some big stars and directors.  Arnold Schwarzenegger directs “The Switch” and stops by.  Richard Donner directs Bobcat Goldthwait and Don Rickles in “The Ventriloquist Dummy”, and Demi Moore is romanced by Jeffrey Tambor in “Dead Right”.  Other stars stopping by include Kelly Preston, William Hickey, Lance Henriksen, Iggy Pop, Katey Sagal, Sam Kinison, Patricia Arquette, Carol Kane, Moses Gunn, Harry Anderson, Louis Arquette, Patricia Clarkson, Richard Thomas, Morton Downey Jr., and Larry Drake.


Give me some tongue!

With cheesy shock stories (which you usually can predict), the series often does become about the guest stars and directors.  If you have a bad story, you might have a fun actor, or you might have fun actors and fun directors come together like they did on “The Ventriloquist Dummy” which feels like it is about everything Tales from the Crypt should be.

A couple of strange episodes this season include more reflexive post-modern episodes.  “Korman’s Kalamity” has Harry Anderson writing for Tales from the Crypt comic book in its heyday and puts the comic of Tales from the Crypt within the actual context of the show.  The other episode includes the “origin” of the Crypt Keeper (according the Crypt Keeper’s afterward).  “Lower Berth” has the Crypt Keeper as the spawn between a Two-Faced Man from a circus and an ancient (and presumably dead) mummy.

Tales from the Crypt is a fun series and one of HBO’s early forays into scripted television which made them famous.  Check out Tales from the Crypt…the Crypt Keeper is waiting for you!

Tales from the Crypt—Season 2 Complete Episode Guide:


“Dead Right”

2.1       Dead Right Airdate:  04/21/90

Cathy (Demi Moore) meets a psychic named Madame Vorma (Natalia Nogulich) who can predict the future.  When the fortunes become true, Cathy learns that she is finally going to meet the man who will make her rich.  With a prediction she will marry a big man who will die to leave her rich, the gold digger decides to date Charlie Marno (Jeffrey Tambor), a man four times her size.  Adapts Shock SuspenStories #6


“The Switch”

2.2       The Switch Airdate:  04/21/90

An elderly man named Carlton Webster (William Hickey) falls in love with a young woman named Linda (Kelly Preston) who tells him that she can’t be with him because of his age.  When he realizes he must find a way to be younger, Carlton decides to undergo a series of radical surgeries.  Adapts Tales from the Crypt #45


“Cutting Cards”

2.3       Cutting Cards Airdate:  04/21/90

Two gamblers (Lance Henriksen and Kevin Tighe) face-off to claim stakes to an area.  As the odds increase, the games get more dangerous.  Adapts Tales from the Crypt #32


“‘Til Death”

2.4       ’Til Death Airdate:  04/24/90

A developer (D. W. Moffett) finds his land is a swamp and realizes he’ll need extra money.  Going to his former voodoo practicing lover (Janet Hubert), he gets a potion to enthrall a rich heiress (Pamela Gien)…forever.  Adapts Vault of Horror #28


“Three’s a Crowd”

2.5       Three’s a Crowd Airdate:  05/01/90

Richard (Gavan O’Herlihy) is jealous of his rich friend Alan (Paul Lieber) and his relationship with his wife Della (Ruth de Sosa), but things get ugly when he suspects they are having an affair.  Adapts Shock SuspenStories #11


“The Thing from the Grave”

2.6       The Thing from the Grave Airdate:  05/08/90

A jealous manager named Mitch Bruckner (Miguel Ferrer) engaged to his client Stacy (Teri Hatcher) refuses to let her go.  When she meets a photographer named Devlin Cates (Kyle Secor) who tries to help her escape, Mitch kills him…but it might take more than death to stop the thing from the grave.  Adapts Tales from the Crypt #22 and Haunt of Fear #1


“The Sacrifice”

2.7       The Sacrifice Airdate:  05/15/90

A life insurance agent named James (Kevin Kilner) finds a rich new client (Don Hood) and plots with his wife to get his fortune.  When James discovers the man (Michael Ironside) who recommended him for the job might ruin their plans.  Adapts Shock SuspenStories #10


“For Cryin’ Out Loud”

2.8       For Cryin’ Out Loud Airdate:  05/22/90

A dirty rock promoter named Marty Slash (Lee Arenberg) finds himself haunted by his conscience (voiced by Sam Kinison) as he prepares to rob an Iggy Pop Amazon benefit concert.  When his banker Ms. Kilbasser (Katey Sagal) uncovers his plans to rob the funds and threatens to expose him.  Adapts Shock SuspenStories #15


“Four-Sided Triangle”

2.9       Four-Sided Triangle Airdate:  05/29/90

A woman named Mary Jo (Patricia Arquette) being held prisoner by a farmer named George (Chelcie Ross) and his wife Luisa (Susan Blommaert) dreams of being rescued by the field scarecrow.  When the scarecrow appears to be alive, the farmer’s wife decides to stop her from escaping.  Adapts Shock SuspenStories #17


“The Ventriloquist’s Dummy”

2.10     The Ventriloquist’s Dummy Airdate:  06/05/90

A boy admires the great ventriloquist Mr. Ingles (Don Rickles).  When Billy Goldman (Bobcat Goldthwait) grows up, he seeks out his idol who has retired from the business.  When Billy learns Ingles’ secret to success, the real horror begins.  Adapts Tales from the Crypt #28


“Judy, You’re Not Yourself Today”

2.11     Judy, You’re Not Yourself Today Airdate:  06/12/90

A witch (Frances Bay) attempts to take over the boy of Judy (Carol Kane).  When she is stopped by Judy’s husband Donald (Brian Kerwin), Judy’s temptation might be her downfall.  Adapts Tales from the Crypt #25


“Fitting Punishment”

2.12     Fitting Punishment Airdate:  06/19/90

Ezra Thornberry (Moses Gunn) is a miserly and cruel.  When his orphaned nephew Bobby (Jon Clair) is forced to live with him, Ezra’s cheapness leads to Bobby’s death…now Bobby’s coming back for revenge.  Adapts Vault of Horror #16


“Korman’s Kalamity”

2.13     Korman’s Kalamity Airdate:  06/26/90

Jim Korman (Harry Anderson) is a poor battered husband working at Tales from the Crypt comic book.  When his creations start coming to live Lorelei Phelps (Cynthia Gibb) uncovers the ties, Jim’s jealous wife Mildred (Colleen Camp) might get in the way of Jim’s future.  Adapts Tales from the Crypt #31


“Lower Berth”

2.14     Lower Berth Airdate:  07/03/90

A traveling circus run by Ernest Feeley (Lewis Arquette) has a problem with its top attraction:  Enoch the Two-Faced Man (Jeff Yagher) is dying.  With a need of a new star, an ancient mummy is brought to the circus.  Enoch has a new love and the Crypt Keeper takes this story personally.  Adapts Tales from the Crypt #33


“Mute Witness to Murder”

2.15     Mute Witness to Murder Airdate:  07/10/90

Susan (Patricia Clarkson) witnesses the murder of her neighbor by Dr. Trask (Richard Thomas).  When she finds she has lost her ability to speak, Susan is institutionalized by the doctor.  Now Susan is trying to escape the doctor’s clutches before it is too late.  Adapts Crypt of Terror #18


“Television Terror”

2.16     Television Terror Airdate:  07/17/90

An extreme talk show host named Horton Rivers (Morton Downey Jr.) goes live from a house of murder.  When the ghosts appear to be real, will ratings be a killing?  Adapts Haunt of Fear #17



“My Brother’s Keeper”

2.17     My Brother’s Keeper Airdate:  07/24/900

Frank (Timothy Stack) and Eddie (Jonathan Stark) are conjoined twins.  Frank is afraid to be separated, but the situation might change once Frank meets a girl named Marie (Jessica Harper).  Adapts Shock SuspenStories #16


“The Secret”

2.18     The Secret Airdate:  07/31/90

Theodore (Mike Simmrin) is held at an orphanage and can’t find out what happened to his real parents.  When the Colberts (Grace Zabriskie and William Frankfather) adopt Theodore, Theodore finds his new life is perfect.  He lives in a big house with a butler named Tobias (Larry Drake), but the Colberts have a secret just like Theodore.  Adapts Haunt of Fear #24

Related Links:

Tales from the Crypt—Season 1 Review and Complete Episode Guide

Tales from the Crypt—Season 3 Review and Complete Episode Guide

Tales from the Crypt—Season 4 Review and Complete Episode Guide

Tales from the Crypt—Season 5 Review and Complete Episode Guide

Tales from the Crypt—Season 6 Review and Complete Episode Guide

Tales from the Crypt—Season 7 Review and Complete Episode Guide

Tales from the Crypt (1972)

The Vault of Horror (1973)

Author: JPRoscoe View all posts by
Follow me on Twitter/Instagram/Letterboxd @JPRoscoe76! Loves all things pop-culture especially if it has a bit of a counter-culture twist. Plays video games (basically from the start when a neighbor brought home an Atari 2600), comic loving (for almost 30 years), and a true critic of movies. Enjoys the art house but also isn't afraid to let in one or two popular movies at the same time.

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