Tales from the Crypt Episode 19: Korman’s Kalamity

Technical Specs

Director: Rowdy Herrington

Writer: Terry Black

Cast: Harry Anderson, Cynthia Gibb, Colleen Camp, John Kassir, Austin Strauss, Lance Davis, Richard Schiff, Abel Franco, Michael Lee Owens, Eric Mettner, Artis Phillips Jr., and Tom Woodruff Jr.

Composer: David Kitay

Air Date: 6/26/1990



After comic artist Jim Korman (Harry Anderson) grows frustrated with his wife Mildred (Colleen Camp) and her incessant nagging, his kooky creature drawings come to life and tales-from-the-crypt-kormans-kalamityterrorize the surrounding area. While investigating the aforementioned creatures, a police officer named Lorelei (Cynthia Gibb) meets and later falls in love with Jim.

A silly episode, “Korman’s Kalamity” pays homage to the original Tales from the Crypt comic series by offering a fictional account of its inception. In spite of its clever premise, however, this episode suffers from a heavy emphasis on obnoxious characters and juvenile humor.



tales-from-the-crypt-kormans-kalamityThe eponymous character is conveyed as a mostly likable individual thanks to his misunderstood qualities, though it should be noted that Korman proves himself to be a spineless wimp when dealing with his overbearing wife. Also worth mentioning is the fact that Harry Anderson and Cynthia Gibb possessed sufficient chemistry to lend credibility to their onscreen romance; however, the relationship between Jim and Lorelei takes a while to progress given the plodding manner with which the earliest scenes are paced.



Whereas many Tales from the Crypt episodes blend frightening elements with a tongue-in-cheek commentary on human nature, “Korman’s Kalamity” forgoes a satirical approach to horror/comedy and instead appeals only to young children with an assortment of cringe-inducing antics (notably, Mildred’s envious and spiteful tales-from-the-crypt-kormans-kalamitytreatment of Korman embodies all the nuance one might expect from an actual comic book). Although similar methods were employed in other episodes, a childish execution in this case tends to clash quite drastically with any gratuitous violence and adult situations that happen to be present. Child audiences may therefore have difficulty handling the intense subject matter, while adult viewers may likewise feel offended by the lack of subtlety in Terry Black’s narrative.





Concluding Comments

tales-from-the-crypt-kormans-kalamity“Korman’s Kalamity” operates on a creative premise, but falls flat as a result of many absurd plot devices. While Tales from the Crypt is notorious for its campy material, this episode will likely alienate serious horror fans with its downright ridiculous approach to storytelling. Young viewers, on the other hand, may also wish to avoid this episode for its gruesome special effects and sexual undertones.


Overall Quality: 3/10


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