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13 Days of Halloween Joe R Lansdale ‘Incident On and Off a Mountain Road’ Review


Written by: Matt Molgaard

 

If you followed Showtime’s incredible Masters of Horror series, you probably caught the film transfer of this horrifying tale (it aired as the debut episode of season one to fantastic acclaim). If you missed that, do yourself a favor and seek it out: it’s a mesmerizing adaptation that remains surprisingly faithful to its source and manages some legit chills.

Joe R. Lansdale’s original short is pretty much the same story told on film (which I just mentioned, if you missed it), with a few very slight variations. Delivered in brutally direct fashion, Lansdale doesn’t attempt to wow viewers with poetic prose here. What he does, is simply tell an animalistic tale at a breakneck rate that ensnares readers immediately and commands attention until the story has wrapped; action to launch, action to finish, terror everywhere in between.

Moon Face is a menacing machine of murder, intent to build a family of corpses with which he shares his company. Mutilation is his forte, and after a roadside accident not far distanced from his personal torture chamber, a new member of the familia is targeted. This would-be victim however, has endured quite a bit in her time. A volatile relationship with a deranged, abusive survivalist empowers this young lady in a way that Moon Face isn’t quite prepared for.

The imagery in this tale is moving, and Lansdale’s descriptive nature, though simplistic in style, really forces the mind’s wheels to turn at a frantic pace. It’s easy to see this story unfold as you read it, whether you’ve actually seen the Masters of Horror episode or not. Our characters are illuminated wonderfully, and it’s easy to take a liking to a villain as petrifying as Moon Face, and it’s just as easy to pull for the story’s heroine, Ellen. Hell, even Ellen’s ex-boyfriend, Bruce is emerges as a truly despicable individual, and he’s not really even involved in this direct incident.

Joe R. Lansdale has a special way with storytelling. His tales are extreme, often very outlandish, and generally, pretty original works. Incident On and Off a Mountain Road is no exception, and if you haven’t yet read it: do so, this is one wild spin on the classic slasher trope!

Rating: 4/5

About The Overseer (1669 Articles)
Author of Say No to Drugs, writer for Blumhouse, Dread Central, Horror Novel Reviews and Addicted to Horror Movies.

1 Comment on 13 Days of Halloween Joe R Lansdale ‘Incident On and Off a Mountain Road’ Review

  1. After just recently reading my first Joe R Lansdale story,which I plan reviewing soon, I look forward to this story. I can definitely say Mr. Lansdale is an adventure that should not be missed. ..as always…just me…the old hippie

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6 Trackbacks / Pingbacks

  1. MASTERS OF HORROR SEASON ONE, EPISODE ONE: INCIDENT ON AND OFF A MOUNTAIN ROAD « Written in Blood
  2. MASTERS OF HORROR SEASON ONE, EPISODE ONE: INCIDENT ON AND OFF A MOUNTAIN ROAD « Written in Blood
  3. MASTERS OF HORROR SEASON ONE, EPISODE TWO: DREAMS IN THE WITCH HOUSE « Written in Blood
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  6. MASTERS OF HORROR SEASON ONE, EPISODE NINE: THE FAIR-HAIRED CHILD « Written in Blood

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