Tales from the Crypt (1996)

Season 2 Episode 12

Fitting Punishment

Aired Unknown Jun 19, 1990 on HBO



  • Trivia

    • [Spoiler warning]
      Goof: At the end of the episode, Bobby and his sneakers return from the grave, but they were sold earlier by Ezra. Did Bobby track down the new owner and kill him?

    • Running gag: In this episode, Ezra uses many famous quotes, claiming most are from the bible, however, most of what he says aren't full biblical quotes at all, just somewhat reworded ones and a few well known non bibical.

    • Product Placements

      In this episode, the following products and their logos can be seen:

      Wilson Sporting Goods: The well known Chicago-based sporting equipment manufacturer's logo can be seen on Bobby's basketball as it is a Wilson brand.

      Nike Air Jordan: The popular top selling and collectible brand of sports related shoe endorsed by basketball legend, Michael Jordan are worn by Bobby in this episode. They are later sold by his evil uncle Ezra. At the time of this episode's airing, Jordan was still an active NBA player and the shoes were extremely popular, which continued years after Jordan retired from active competition.

    • Music: Composed by Stanley Clarke.

    • Crypt Keeper Wardrobe: In the opening wraparound segment, The Crypt Keeper is wearing a basketball uniform and is shooting baskets with skulls.

      In the closing wraparound segment, the Crypt Keeper is still wearing the basketball uniform and is tying his basketball shoe.

  • Quotes

    • Bobby: Like it says in the Bible, Uncle Ezra, [holding up a crowbar] "Blood is thicker than water". [Staggers over to Ezra, then swings the crowbar].

    • Ezra: You know, a human body is one big cesspool. Food flows in, sh*t flows out, and blood flows all around.

    • [While working on a corpse]
      Bobby: Aren't you supposed to use chemicals or something?
      Ezra: He's dead, you damn fool. He doesn't know the difference.

    • Bobby: Don't you remember me?
      Ezra: Thank the merciful Lord, no.

    • [Opening wraparound segment with the Crypt Keeper wearing a basketball uniform and shooting baskets with skulls.]
      The Crypt Keeper: There you are, sports fiends. You know, dead people like me make excellent point guards. When we can't get off a shot, we simply pass...away, that is! [laughs] Speaking of which, allow me to be your fear leader for tonight's halftime show. It's a putrid playlet about my personal favorite sport: being a mortician. I fittingly call it, 'Fitting Punishment.'

      [Closing wraparound segment with the Crypt Keeper wearing a basketball uniform and tying his basketball shoe.]
      The Crypt Keeper: Well, looks like old Ezra learned raising a teen is no walk in the graveyard. Now he's going to need one of his cheap coffins for himself. That's what he gets for having a name like Ezra. As for poor Bobby, he got a pretty nasty case of athlete's food, didn't he? I mean, I've heard of footloose, but yikes! Oh well, I guess the next best thing to making a goal is becoming a ghoul! Right, kiddies? [laughs]

    • Ezra: You keep messing with that ball, I'll bounce your b*lls right out of here.

    • Ezra: Waste not, want not.

    • Ezra: God helps the mourners for they are blessed. [pulls tooth from corpse] And God also helps those, that help themselves.

    • Ezra: The Righteous need the divine light to see the truth.

    • Ezra: Cleanliness is next to Godliness.

  • Notes

    • This story is a loose adaptation of the H. P. Lovecraft short story "In the Vault" (1925).

    • EC Comic Connection: Story adapted from The Vault Of Horror #16, Dec 1950-Jan 1951. Story by Al Feldstein with art by Graham Ingels.

      In the comic story, the main characters are depicted as caucasian, in this episode, they are depicted as African-American.

  • Allusions

    • Matthew 5:4

      Biblical quote, which translates from the King James Bible as "Blessed are they that mourn: for they shall be comforted".

      In this episode, when Ezra is extracting the gold tooth from the corpse when Bobby first arrives, Ezra says, "God helps the mourners for they are blessed". This could possibly be his take on the Matthew 5:4 verse, as it is somewhat similar but incorrect. This fits in with the rest his so-called biblical quotes which are mostly incorrect or not even biblical at all.

    • Michael Jordan

      In this episode, Bobby wears a pair of Air Jordan's, a popular brand of sneakers, maufactured by Nike and endorsed by basketball legend, Michael Jordan. Also, in the closing wraparound segment, the Crypt Keeper is seen tying a pair as well.

    • Benjamin Franklin

      In this episode, when Ezra is telling Bobby that chemicals cost money, he says, "Like it says in the Bible, "A Penny Saved, Is A Penny Earned". Bobby then corrects him and says, "Didn't Ben Franklin say that". Of course, Bobby was correct, Ezra was wrong, it is not from the Bible, this refers to the famous quote by Ben Franklin meaning that any bit of money you don't have to spend is the same as making it.