Director: James Spencer
Writers: John Harrison and Scott Nimerfro
Cast: Steve Coogan, Julia Sawalha, Tim Stern, Serena Gordon, John Kassir, Matthew Scurfield, and Gerry Crampton
Composer: Jay Ferguson
Air Date: 6/7/1996
Pawn shop owner Danny Skeggs (Steve Coogan) takes in Teresa (Julia Sawalha), a heavily pregnant woman, and falls in love with her. When Teresa gives birth, however, a jealous Danny prepares an evil scheme to get rid of the baby. Thereafter, Teresa experiences a mental breakdown, prompting Danny to kidnap the child of a random stranger.
Operating on a weak premise, “The Kidnapper” is marred by poorly written characters and a silly narrative conflict. Especially bizarre is the behavior of Danny Skeggs, who, without sufficient motive, transitions from a kind and sympathetic boyfriend to a depraved kidnapper.
This season-seven entry interjects comic relief moments into a child-abduction-themed story, resulting in frequent tonal inconsistencies. All but the most diehard Tales from the Crypt viewers may therefore wish to avoid “The Kidnapper,” which fails to explore its harrowing subject matter from a solemn and mature framework.
Forgoing the gory, scary, and extraordinary circumstances of a typical Tales from the Crypt episode, “The Kidnapper” will likely evoke criticism from the majority of series enthusiasts. (The final scene does, however, feature a bloody POV shot from the main character’s perspective.)
“The Kidnapper” earns its reputation as one of the poorest episodes of Tales from the Crypt. Specifically, this offering is plagued by unrealistic situations, over-the-top performances, and cringe-worthy character interactions.
Overall Quality: 1/10
If you enjoyed this post, please enter your email address in the subscription box to stay tuned for more updates.