Back in the day, if I had to bet on what eighties teen star was most likely to explode big, win awards and end up tabloid fodder; I would have placed all my chips on DIANE FRANKLIN. With her kewpie doll peepers, legitimate acting chops and general effervescent presence, the camera not only loved her, it seemed willing to place it’s new coat down on a mud puddle for her to walk across. Alas, it was not meant to be. Come back to the five and dime DIANE FRANKLIN, DIANE FRANKLIN! As it stands, we are left with a handful of worthwhile offerings from the starlet, some impossible to find (T.V. movies SUMMER GIRL and DEADLY LESSONS), some impossible to shake (LAST AMERICAN VIRGIN, AMITYVILLE 2), and some impossible to ignore (foreign exchange student Monique Junot in BETTER OFF DEAD!). The great D.F. was versatile as hell, and if you ever had the itching to see her do the broadest of comedy look no further than TERRORVISION, a wacky CHARLES BAND produced TED NICOLAOU (SUBSPECIES) directed, would-be cult confection that somehow fell through the cracks. Donning CYNDI LAUPER duds and surrounded by a family of equally camped-up oddballs that include renaissance woman and trash icon MARY WARANOV as her Mom, and B-movie magnet GERRIT GRAHAM (CHOPPING MALL) as her dad, FRANKLIN plays Suzy Putterman, a fluffy, MTV-addicted simpleton who is about to come face to face with the gooey antidote to MAC AND ME. Thanks to a new satellite dish, the Puttermans (who also include survivalist Grandpa BERT REMSEN and RAMBO-brained lil’bro CHAD ALLEN) find that their television is now a portal to the stars, or at least an intergalactic trash chute. Equal parts LITTLE SHOP OF HORRORS and an overextended OINGO BOINGO video, TERRORVISION will stop at nothing to earn its kooky offbeat stripes. The frenetic, panting desperation can grate at times and the humor is hit or miss, but the years have been kind to this intentionally goofy salute to slime and late night cable atrocities. It’s ’80s excesses are now its strongest selling point, and it’s certainly a worthwhile, though admittedly garish, addition to canon la FRANKLIN.indelible scenes

  • Mom and Pop’s swinger pals get offed in the pool, later to recreate BOB & CAROL & TED & ALICE poster with Grandpa thrown in for good measure
  • Rocker O.D.’s (JONATHAN GRIES of MONSTER SQUAD) remains resemble a guitar
  • Shout out to ELVIRA in the form of T.V. host Medusa (JENNIFER RICHARDS)
  • JOHN CARL BUECHLER‘s (CELLAR DWELLER) ZYZZYBALUBA on acid style special effects

EDITOR’S NOTE: Special thanks to Richard of Doomed Moviethon for setting me up with this jem!

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15 years ago

Ooooh, Diane…Loved her in Amityville II. Well, perhaps “love” is too strong a word. “Lust” is much more appropriate. I wish I was her demon brother! 🙂

I saw this one at least once, but I think I just didn’t “get” it. One of the many I need to revisit.

15 years ago

Good theme song,John carl buechler’s creatures all look like Ghoulies leftovers though.Which is kinda good and bad.