Forgotten Made for Television “Classics - Celebrating 1972"
Gargoyles 1972 "They are coming"
Forgotten Made for Television "Classic"
Long before "Buffy," "I know what you did last summer," or "Walking Dead," "Gargoyles" appeared as a made-for-television movie; it would soon be talked about at workplaces and coffee breaks for weeks after it appeared on CBS.
This film was created by Tomorrow Entertainment and was filmed in Carlsbad Caverns National Park, New Mexico. This film originally appeared on Columbia Broadcasting System on November 21st, 1972, as the Tuesday Movie of the week.
According to the website IMDb, the 1972 "GARGOYLES" film is listed high in popularity. "Gargoyles" is a favourite at "B Movie" festivals, and Evira and Svengoolie often have this film appear on their shows.
This very low-budget movie was filmed using only one camera, something almost unheard of today for television productions or movies. A young Bernie Casey portrayed the "Head Gargoyle," but director Bill Norton did not like his voice and felt he could not be adequately heard in the gargoyle attire. Well-known voice actor Vic Perrin (Known as the voice of "No Man in the original Star Trek killing)
This CBS Movie of the week film has an excellent cast. Mickey Alzola was one of the Gargoyles and stunt actors who would go on to do over 42 more features after this film; some of these titles would include "Young Guns," "U.S. Marshals," "Bat*21," and many more. Bernie Casey would appear in "Deep Space Nine," "Revenge of the Nerds IV." "Babylon 5" and many more. Jennifer Salt, the daughter in this film, would be well known for her role in the television series "Soap" She would become the Executive Producer of the Gothic series "American Horror Story."
Bill Norton directed the film. He also was the director for episodes of the series "Buffy the Vampire Slayer," "Law & Order Criminal Intent," "Tour of Duty," "Angel" and many other films and television series.
The film centers around an anthropologist travelling with his daughter to the southwest United States. Along their journey, they will meet an old Coot named Uncle Willie, who shows them an unusual exhibit. Before we know it, a small desert town has Gargoyles overturning cars, smashing into motel rooms and taking the Anthropologist's daughter.
A low-budget but interesting battle between Gargoyles, tracking dogs, horses, dirt bikers and two officers from the local Sherrif's department begins. The Claws will fly, shotgun blasting and more awaits in this pitched battle. You might even notice a well-known soap opera actress hanging from a telephone pole.
Those familiar with this film might be aware of the police chase scene. This is where a Chevy Impala police cruiser chases dirt bikes. During the chase on desert roads, it seems the Impala police vehicle transforms into a Ford LTD Police cruiser. Should you watch this classic Horror film, it is worth watching for this film error.
When this movie came out in late 1972, CBS considered it a possible series. This sadly never came to reality.
Many people remember this line from the movie; it was reported that some motorcycle enthusiasts took offence and wrote to CBS regarding this line in the film.
Diana Boley, (Actress Jennifer Salt) "Gargoyles are a scientific fact. And they're no more dangerous than a high school drop-out on a motorcycle."
The tagline "They are coming for you" is also well remembered.
In the original film, you watched Gargoyles leaping from the rocks onto bikes and horseriders. A remake, I am sure, would have loud music, lots of blood and shrieks as the Gargoyles attacked. Maybe even slow-motion effects as the gargoyles struck.
An important thing to remember about the time of this film, the big three networks of the day ABC, NBC, and CBS, were sometimes completed with limited budgets. Movies were often created to fit 90 to 120-minute time slots with commercials.
Note; Remember always to look under your bed before sleepy time.
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About the Creator
Bruce Curle `
A Fifty something male that enjoys writing short stories, scripts and poetry. I have had many different types of work over my lifetime and consider myself fairly open minded and able to speak on many topics.
Excellent work. Looking forward to reading more!
Interesting piece about a show I unfortunately never got to watch. I 72 I had my own gargoyles to fend off. After finishing my tour in the Air Force and about to have my first child, I had little time for tv.
Great review!!! Unfortunately, it's a TV movie that somehow was missed seeing.💖💕