This series is not a patch on masters of horror, which had some genuinely scary moments. Fear Itself has exactly the same directors and writers as Masters of Horror, yet constantly proves itself to be inferior to its predecessor. The good thing about masters of horror was it's timeslot and of course the freedom it gained from being broadcast on showtime. NBC, meanwhile, seems to be greatly limiting what the guys working on fear itself can do and as a result the show suffers greatly. Masters of Horror had its ups and downs, but it was still a good show and there were episodes that i found pretty frightening. John carpenter even managed to make something of a return to form. When i heard that the same guys who did masters of horror would be doing a new horror anthology series i was very excited, but thats gone now. I think after the first few episodes i just started watching out of habit, hoping the show would eventually pay off. I know only four episodes have been broadcast so far, but i've really lost hope for the series since this subpar effort on John Landis's part. This guy is responsible for one of the greatest horror films of all time and one of my favourite episodes of masters of horror and yet i think this was the worst episode of this series so far. The guy doesn't even seem to be trying to make this episode scary. The entire narrative is just setup, setup, setup and then no payoff. The twist was too easy, i'm betting that anyone who saw the trailer before watching this episode saw it coming. It was unsurprising and totally boring. Several opportunities to make the episode more exciting were stepped on. What was up with the two mysterious uncles? Surely something could have been done with them. Instead they're introduced, made to look integral to the plot and then ditched. Aside from them, every other character came across as two dimensional and i had absolutely no problem with watching any of them die... yet none of them did. In fact, there wasn't a single death scene in this episode and the only real gore comes at the end buy which point you don't really care.
Acting was pretty crummy. There were no actual scares to be found anywhere. I want to believe that this series is going to get better, but if this is all landis can do with the show then i don't see much hope for other directors. Next week is stuart gordons turn. He is one of my favourite horror directors of all time, yet the trailer for the next episode looks tacky and camp. Lets hope this show turns around and soon.