Tales From the Crypt – Two for the Show (10/20/93)

tftctwofor03Beautiful trophy wife Traci Lords is picking at her food — good thing, too: broccoli, potatoes and rice — the carbs, my God, the carbs!  She is bored to death listening to her much older husband talking about some business affairs.  I think we can all agree, we’d rather hear Traci talk about her old business affairs.

Finally, Traci tells her husband Andy that she is leaving him; not only that, she was having an affair.  He does not take it well, and after a struggle Andy stabs her. A neighbor calls the police after hearing screams from their condo — unusual because her husband is at home this time.  One of the cops hanging around the station after his shift ended volunteers to respond.

He shows up as Andy is stuffing Traci in a trunk.  There is a great scene as the officer searches the condo.  Traci is dead in the tub, covered by water and Mr. Bubble, but her face is exposed through a gap in the suds.  Andy block’s the officer’s view and brushes more bubbles over her face.  Suspenseful and visually interesting.  Kudos.

tftctwofor05After getting rid of the cop, Andy begins hacking Traci into more manageable pieces.  We see him pulling bloody arms and legs out of the tub.  Finally he pulls out a severed Traci-head with her mouth agape.  Actually, she could probably sell a latex model online and make some serious coin.

He loads up a suitcase and takes her to the train station.  He tells the baggage clerk he wants to check the bag through to Chicago.  Inexplicably, the clerk hands him a baggage tag marked CRP — Corpus Christi.  I’d really like to think this was a sly corpus joke.  However, in my heart, I suspect it was just a mistake.

As luck would have it, the officer is at the train station about to leave on vacation.  Andy can’t just dump the bag with a phony name and go home.  He must get on the train — again, as luck would have it, in a seat right across from the officer.

tftctwofor11Andy tries to get away by going to the dining car.  The officer follows him and says that he is working on a case that will require every bag on the train to be searched.  Andy goes to the luggage car, switches tags with another bag and tosses Traci’s Samsonite coffin off the train.

Naturally the officer was lying about investigating a case, and suspected Andy of murder the whole time. Once things begin to unfold, the episode really stunned me.  There were some fun switches, and the score — iffy up to this point — really kicked in and heightened the suspense.

Sadly, Traci Lords is killed off very early in the episode — I think the Cryptkeeper got more airtime.  It wasn’t a likable role, but I always enjoy seeing her. David Paymer and Vincent Spano were also great as Andy and the cop.  The episode’s tone was a little spotty in the beginning, but then it just soared, easily redeeming the whole thing.  The ending does fall apart if you think about it for 2 seconds, but it doesn’t even matter.

I give it 1.8 for the show.


  • Traci Lords is always awesome; I saw her at a show in Dallas, and she was awesome off the screen too.  She doesn’t seem to work much — I don’t know if it is by choice or if Hollywood is really that stupid.
  • Title Analysis: 2nd consecutive episode to have a pathetic title.  I would create a “pathetic” tag, but I already have one called Ray Bradbury Theater.  I am baffled by “Two for the Show.”  I get the reference, but what two?  What show?  I would have even settled for the not-entirely-accurate homage, “Stranglers on a Train.”

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