The Age of Scary Puppets and Dolls: Why Full Moon Deserves Their Streaming Service
Seriously, if you haven't heard of Full Moon Entertainment, you're just dead.
When you think about it, we shouldn't be too surprised that the boys at Full Moon Entertainment recently relaunched their streaming service, branded as Full Moon Features—featuring 500+ titles of some of the shlockiest, sexiest, sleaziest, cheesiest, B-horror flicks ever known to man.
They're seriously legendary. They're so legendary that Full Moon isn't just known for their gratuitous horror, but science fiction, mystery, and more. Even period pieces! So if you're thinking Full Moon has been nothing more than the dirty grandpa of the likes of The Asylum (which, honestly, in my humble opinion is not horror, but dumb creature features; yet more power to them, of course), you're sorely mistaken.
Full Moon's material may be cheek— but they take it seriously.
This Is Why Full Moon Entertainment IS the Reason Why We're Scared of Dolls, Puppets and Toys
Because of Full Moon, we have Annabelle. Because of Full Moon, we have Child's Play. Because of Full Moon, we have The Boy. That studio is the reason we're terrified of plastic—in its many forms, either on humans or not.
Can you guess exactly which iconic film franchises we're, of course, referring to?
No, we're not referencing Trancers—although quite the cool sci-fi flick having fun with Terminator motifs. We're also not talking about Subspecies and its three sequels, arguably just as much cult classics and memorable in their own right.
We can't in good conscience simply save this one for last. Undoubtedly this is the cornerstone, the mascot of the Full Moon Entertainment catalog, and all you need to do is look straight into the eyes of Blade yourself to understand why:
The original, 10 sequels, a crossover with another set of characters in the Full Moon franchise (read further down!), a recent 2018 reboot Puppet Master: The Littlest Reich, an actual spin-off film featuring the Blade puppet(!)... And a comic book series?
...You'd think the franchise was memorable or something.
Not to Be Outdone: 'Demonic Toys'
This was Puppet Master on acid, basically. As if the Puppet Master series wasn't shlocky enough... The fact is we definitely delved into the backstory in wondrous ways regarding the puppets, with some panache and true storytelling—and a memorable score to boot—but Demonic Toys was like the From Dusk Till Dawn of puppet movies.
They're just there. They come to life. We don't know why. But we should be terrified. You can't get any more gratuitous than that.
That's entirely the point, though! This spawned an age of seasonal, flavorful features tapping into everything from actual Halloween movies (even the Michael Myers stuff, when you think about it) to Christmas horror. Nothing says scary more than a devilish toy, right?
It was so exciting that there were three crossover events you'd pay in blood to see: there was one Puppet Master vs. Demonic Toys. Whaaaaaaaaaat? And two others: care to guess what those were?
And Lastly: 'Dollman'
You guessed it: the dude like a doll strapping a Kruger blaster did cross over with the likes of some demonic toys, for sure, but let's give Bardo his fair share—He's tiny. Yep. That's what was so cool about him.
Okay, yes, the same actor who played the iconic time-traveling cop in Trancers—Tim Thomerson (I swear it can't be his real name)—also played an intergalactic bad-ass by the name of Brick Bardo.
Sad for him, he landed on Earth to find out that his species roughly measures to about the size of Woody from Toy Story compared to everything else, especially us homo sapiens—only he wields a real gun and is not made of plastic.
Certainly the legend Thomerson would be the only one to pull it off. But the concept isn't all too new: Honey, I Shrunk the Kids, Gulliver's Travels, Jack and the Beanstalk.
Pair it with some visible female skin and Thomerson, and that's one hell of a concept.
(Wait, what was the other cross-over??)
Streaming Services Do Well With This for Good Reason
It's like being in a candy store. The stuff's so bad for you, but it's all so good to look at and eat up anyway! That's why streaming kills it, what with Netflix, Shudder, and Screambox still doing business to push the horror genre on the millennial crowd carrying an iPhone or playing on a PS4.
But guess what: Competition just got heavier. Sure, Netflix does well, particularly in the horror genre (*ahem* Stranger Things). And Shudder and Screambox certainly hold their own.
But you're messing with Full Moon here, babe.
(Demonic Toys crossed over with another only slightly well-known Full Moon film, Bad Channels!)