Review Hammer House Of Horror (1980)

michaellevenson

Member: Rank 8
The first foray into tv for the legendary film company. Thirteen episodes, mostly terrific, a few duds but overall a good series.
My favorites; Silent Scream with Peter Cushing as a concentration camp guard still experimenting 35 years on, Rude Awakening about a guy who murders his wife on Friday the 13th ....over and over again.
Guardian Of The Abyss with Paul Darrow as a sinister antique dealer, Gareth Thomas is in Visitor from the Grave. The Thirteenth Reunion is especially creepy , Charlie Boy about a voodoo fetish is very good. The Mark of Satan is weird, in fact I don't really understand this episode, something about a bloke seeing signs of Satan everywhere and ends up taking a drill to his head.

 

Doctor Omega

Administrator
Staff member
VIP
"Witching Time""
Don Leaver Anthony Read Jon Finch, Patricia Quinn, Prunella Gee, Ian McCulloch, Lennard Pearce September 13, 1980
A 17th-century witch uses her craft to transport herself to the 20th century. She brings spine-chilling terror to the present-day occupants of the old farmhouse in which she lived. She puts her mark on the man now living in the farmhouse while his wife tries to save him.

""The Thirteenth Reunion""
Peter Sasdy Jeremy Burnham Michael Latimer, Julia Foster, Dinah Sheridan, Richard Pearson, Norman Bird, Warren Clarke, Kevin Stoney, Gerard Kelly, James Cosmo, George Innes September 20, 1980
A reporter investigating a health farm stumbles upon a horrifying truth behind a secret society that is connected to it and must now fear for her life.

""Rude Awakening""
Peter Sasdy Gerald Savory Denholm Elliott, Lucy Gutteridge,
Denholm Elliott plays a lecherous estate agent who has recurrent dreams about his seductive secretary, a mysterious house and an even more mysterious encouragement to murder his wife.

""Growing Pains""

Francis Megahy Nicholas Palmer Gary Bond, Barbara Kellerman, Norman Beaton, Geoffrey Beevers October 4, 1980
After the death of their young son, a scientist and his wife adopt a new son, but it coincides with a series of odd events and disasters for the father's research.


""The House that Bled to Death""
Tom Clegg David Lloyd Nicholas Ball, Rachel Davies, Brian Croucher, Patricia Maynard, Milton Johns October 11, 1980
After buying it for a good price, a couple and their young daughter move into a house that was the scene of a macabre murder. A series of terrifying events eventually force them to flee for their lives, but all is not as it seems.


""Charlie Boy""
Robert Young Bernie Cooper & Francis Megahy Leigh Lawson, Marius Goring, Angela Bruce, Frances Cuka, Michael Culver, Jeff Rawle, David Healy, Janet Fielding October 18, 1980
An ancient African idol possessed by the spirit of an evil sorcerer seems to take on a life of its own.


""The Silent Scream""
Alan Gibson Francis Essex Peter Cushing, Brian Cox, Elaine Donnelly October 25, 1980
Peter Cushing plays an elderly pet shop owner who is secretly a former Nazi concentration camp guard, intent on continuing experiments on human victims. His plan is to create prisons with no bars, for which he captures a former prison inmate and his wife.


""Children of the Full Moon""
Tom Clegg Murray Smith Diana Dors, Christopher Cazenove, Celia Gregory, Robert Urquhart November 1, 1980
A couple head off on holiday to the West Country but get stranded. They find sanctuary at a house in the woods where a woman (played by Diana Dors) cares for a number of children whom he believes to be werewolves. After an accident, the husband wakes in a hospital to be told the werewolf children were all a dream. However his now-pregnant wife has changed, developing a taste for raw steak among other things.

""Carpathian Eagle""

Francis Megahy Bernie Cooper & Francis Megahy Suzanne Danielle, Anthony Valentine, Siân Phillips, Jeffry Wickham, W. Morgan Sheppard, Pierce Brosnan November 8, 1980
A young woman, convinced she possesses the reincarnated spirit of a murderess, walks the night seeking out new victims to fill an ancient prophecy for death. Features Pierce Brosnan in one of his early screen roles.

""Guardian of the Abyss""

Don Sharp David Fisher Ray Lonnen, Barbara Ewing, John Carson, Rosalyn Landor, Paul Darrow November 15, 1980
Human sacrifice as part of an ancient rite is the unexpected consequence when an antiques dealer unwittingly buys a mirror with mysterious evil power.

""Visitor from the Grave""
Peter Sasdy John Elder Kathryn Leigh Scott, Gareth Thomas, Simon MacCorkindale
November 22, 1980
A psychologically fragile woman accidentally kills an intruder who is about to hurt her. Her husband buries the body in the woods, but she continues to see the man in various places, leading her to seek help from a psychic. Worse is to follow as she becomes the victim of a macabre plot.

""The Two Faces Of Evil""
Alan Gibson Ranald Graham Gary Raymond, Anna Calder-Marshall, Philip Latham, Jenny Laird, Brenda Cowling November 29, 1980
Setting off on their holidays, a family give a lift to a sinister hitch-hiker. After the car crashes, one man is dead and one man is injured. But which one?

""The Mark of Satan""
Don Leaver Don Shaw Peter McEnery, Emrys James, Georgina Hale, Peter Birrel, Conrad Phillips December 6, 1980
A worker in a hospital mortuary becomes convinced that a conspiracy of evil has chosen him as the Devil's disciple. Those around him remain sceptical, believing that his rantings are a sign of insanity rather than a desperate cry for help from an innocent soul marked for Satan.
 

Doctor Omega

Administrator
Staff member
VIP
I loved Hammer House of Horror.

My favourites were The Silent Scream and Visitor from the Grave, but the one that scared the crap out of me was the hitchhiker one with the yellow macintosh!

A great series.

Around about the time of The Silent Scream, I wrote to Peter Cushing and he sent back a signed photo of himself as Grand Moff Tarkin.

I had no vhs recorder in those days, so recorded Silent Scream onto audio tape and learned the episode pretty much off by heart!
 

Doctor Omega

Administrator
Staff member
VIP
""The Mark of Satan""
Don Leaver Don Shaw Peter McEnery, Emrys James, Georgina Hale, Peter Birrel, Conrad Phillips December 6, 1980

A worker in a hospital mortuary becomes convinced that a conspiracy of evil has chosen him as the Devil's disciple. Those around him remain sceptical, believing that his rantings are a sign of insanity rather than a desperate cry for help from an innocent soul marked for Satan.

This one was about a guy who was obsessed with the number 9 who ends up in a hospital mortuary.


Three days after this was broadcast John Lennon was shot. (3 times itself is 9)
It was the 8th in New York when he died, but the 9th in the UK - so 3 days after this broadcast..

He was killed by a guy called Mark who asked Satan to help him.


John Lennon was obsessed with the number 9.

He was taken to a hospital mortuary on 9th avenue.




I don't believe anything of what I have just written, but one can find coincidental patterns in anything if one tries!


And I never understood this particular episode either! :emoji_alien:
 
Last edited:

michaellevenson

Member: Rank 8
Yes it's a strange episode, not sure if Peter McEnery's character is mad or is Satan really inside his head waiting to be let out hence the drill.
The follow up series Mystery and Suspense, wasn't as good but did have a few goodies.
The Corvini Inheritance with David McCallum, The Wall Came Tumbling Down, and Black Carrion being my favourite. Of course Child's Play is the best known of the series which was a bit silly for me.
 

Doctor Omega

Administrator
Staff member
VIP
Yes, I remember that, when I first saw this, I though "Come on! Where are the castles, the peasant villagers, the Monsignors? And why is it always set in modern day? I don't know if I am going to like this!


Now I look back at it and love almost every episode. The fact that a happy ending is not necessarily guaranteed was also harsh at the time for a kid watching, but adds to the punch of the storytelling.

Yes, Hammer House of Mystery and Suspense lost that edge I think because some suit somewhere obviously chickened out on the horror bit and the dumb decision to make each episode too long i.m.o. diluted what lesser impact there already was. I liked the Child's Play episode, but it was like a Twilight Zone story stretched out to ridiculous proportionsl

HHOH remains a great show though.
 

johnnybear

Member: Rank 6
Guardian of The Abyss was a good episode similar in tone to Hammer's Dennis Wheatley forays! Witching Time was the only show where the good guys survived as well and it was shown first! Carpathian Eagle I liked because I was a big Suzanne Danielle fan back then! Silent Scream because I am a fan of the great Peter Cushing! Mark of Satan and Thirteenth Reunion I wasn't too keen on as they seemed a bit ghastly and the Rude Awakening too! Two Faces of Evil was a cracker and Visitor From The Grave was good too! House That Bled was a bit flat although it did have the great Brian 'Crimmo' Croucher in it! Charlie Boy was a decent story and Leigh Lawson always plays it as the nice guy while Diana Dors as Mrs.Ardoy wasn't as sinister as her Werewolf husband Jacob Witkin in Children of The Full Moon! Hammer's second foray into television wasn't the success they hoped it would be but for a lot of us teenagers back in 1980 it was good entertainment for Saturday nights in winter!
JB
 

Doctor Omega

Administrator
Staff member
VIP
I think that if Hammer want to raise their current profile, they should revive this series in a new modern version.

The reality is though that I guess it would doubtless be dreadful, owing to the lack of taste and creative ability these days. :emoji_alien:
 

Doctor Omega

Administrator
Staff member
VIP
Top