Monsters - Jar
PLOT - While managing a remote inn near a wilderness swamp, an innkeeper makes ends meet by selling jars of items from the swamp. One particular item helps others to "meet ends". A curious private eye checks into the inn in search of a missing person, and meets Ann, who has brought her husband there to get him "away from it all.
LOWDOWN - I have several times in the past reviewed and remarked on episodes of the television series Monsters. Airing for three seasons, Monsters was a more low budget version of Tales From The Darkside. Dealing mostly with the monsters, demons, and ghouls, this television series was a hidden gem that sadly became overshadowed when the much higher budget Tales From The Crypt began in 1989. The 7th episode in the second season is in what my eyes is one of the best stories told. Monsters really wasn't my cup of tea, there were some really great episodes but I feel Jar was by far the best.
This tells the story of a small remote inn near a swamp and how a private eye comes in searching for a missing person. There he comes across a beautiful woman and her much older bastard of a husband. It seems that she's trapped in a loveless marriage since if the husband dies she looses all of his fortune. That night we witness when the woman buys what appears to be a large jar from the inn keeper. Sneaking back into her room, she gives the husband the jar saying she it's his favorite pickles. There suddenly a large squid like creature leaps up from the jar attacking the husband and literally gets sucked into nothing, only his clothes on the floor remaining. It isn't long until the private eye comes barging in hearing all the noise only to discover what terrible secret the wife planned and actually seeing it as the perfect crime. No body...no murder.
I think the big reason why I like this episode is because of actor Fritz Weaver. Originally starring in Creepshow, one of the best horror anthologies from the 1980's. Going on to appearing in one of the best episodes of Tales from the darkside, and then of course fricking being the reason John D LeMay's character becomes possessed in Friday the 13th the series. This man has talent.
I loved the whole inn being in the middle of nowhere by the swamp and how the owner knows that these horrible creatures are living there and he simply catches and jars them to sell for murder. The creature leaps out, sucks the person dry and goes back into the jar. No mess...no clean up!
I liked the ending twist of course and I found this episode to be very well written as brief as it was. In fact I feel this could have even been longer, maybe even a full length film. But then again aren't all the best episodes feel a bit too short.
I strongly recommend this episode to anyone. If you wanna see a clever tale with some pretty cool effects, check out Jar. It's by far one of the best episodes of Monsters that ever aired!