The Hammer House of Horror TV series, first screened in the autumn of 1980, is one of my all time favourite horror TV shows. And, God, I wish there had been many more episodes, as even though it did run for 13 weeks, it seemed to go over far too quickly for me.
What I particularly loved about this series was that each episode was different. One week, you might have a house occupied by a werewolf family. Another week, you might have a haunted house story. The sheer brilliance of these episodes was enhanced even more by the guest appearances of such classic Hammer stalwarts as Peter Cushing, John Carson and Barbara Ewing.
Another factor that made the series so enjoyable and realistic was that each episode was set in modern day Britain, be it in a country house or in a busy town centre. And when you thrown in a host of such interesting, well-developed and – at times, such quite scary characters – then you are onto a winner!
Although I loved every single one of the Hammer House of Horror episodes, my three favourite ones are The Two Faces of Evil, The House That Bled to Death and Visitor From The Grave. These stories completely knock the spots off most of the so-called “horror” movies of today, and did not have to rely on cheap, jump scares or formulaic plots to scare viewers out of their wits. Most of these Hammer House of Horror episodes ended on an extremely dark note, with no solid guarantees that the hero or heroine was going to survive whatever horrors they encountered. This, for me, is what makes a TRUE horror story. Oh yes, and it was great to watch each episode without cringing at any corny attempts at humour, a failing which dilutes the shock factor of many of the horror films of today (the later Nightmare On Elm Street movies were particularly guilty of this, with their annoying, wise-cracking Freddy).
I love Hammer House of Horror so much that I have reviewed every single episode on my YouTube channel, Alan Scouser, at: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCST2gl5_Ty8ci9ni0bEW0Uw
You can buy the box set of the Hammer House of Horror by clicking on the link below: