“€œHomecoming”€ – A Review

A few weeks ago, I had the privilege of previewing an upcoming episode of the Showtime series, ‘œMasters of Horror’. The episode, Homecoming, airs this Friday evening (which also happens to be the beginning of a Showtime free weekend). If you watch nothing else on TV this week, make sure you carve out [...]

Commentary By: Richard Blair

A few weeks ago, I had the privilege of previewing an upcoming episode of the Showtime series, ‘œMasters of Horror’. The episode, Homecoming, airs this Friday evening (which also happens to be the beginning of a Showtime free weekend). If you watch nothing else on TV this week, make sure you carve out 50 minutes to see this show. Here’™s a synopsis from the Showtime site:

 

Terror and scandal grip the nation when the media discovers that the living dead have swayed the Presidential election. This adaptation of Dale Bailey’™s award-winning short story ‘œDeath & Suffrage’ blends zombie horror and contemporary political satire with chilling results.

Joe Dante (the director) and Sam Hamm (the screenwriter) have created a piece that is sure to cause a shitstorm of controversey in right wing circles. Why? The zombies are dead soldiers. And they express their views of war in a manner that the 101st Fighting Keyboarders brigade will certainly consider, well, unpatriotic.

Prior to my seeing the preview, Homecoming was described to me as ‘œagitprop comedy’. Well, yeah. But for someone like me who is so tuned into the current political landscape (and the players who litter the landscape), Homecoming resonated because it spoke not only for the current travesty in Iraq, but for the general futility of all war. The political statement that Dante makes is powerful, to say the least ‘” and especially in the current climate of intel investigation (think back to Harry Reid’™s recent calling the Senate into closed session). With the emerging questions about the selling of the war, even more so.

There were points during the show that I was laughing uncontrollably. (The caricature of of a certain female right wing pundit was PERFECT and priceless. A particular scene involving candle wax made me shudder.) But by the time the credits rolled at the end, I was somber in the extreme from the statement that Dante makes. And maybe that’™s the impact he really wanted.

Over the years, I’™ve seen quite a few made-for-Showtime movies and series, and for the most part, they’™re not great. The production values of Homecoming were excellent, and the acting was, for the most part, spot on and not overplayed. The bottom line is that Homecoming is an emotionally moving work on many levels – definitely not your typical zombie flick.

It’™s hard to say how it will play with people who don’™t pay much attention to politics, or for who the war in Iraq is just a distant inconvenience on a daily basis. But maybe it will open a few eyes. In an undead sort of way, of course.

Wednesday, November 30th, 2005 by Richard Blair |
Category: General,Permalink

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