Adapted from http://tvtropes.org
Twin Peaks meets The Twilight Zone in the guise of youth television drama
Eerie Indiana was a superb nineteen-episode supernatural series that aired on NBC from 1991-1992 (in prime time!) and then again on FOX Saturday mornings from 1997-98. The short-lived series had a mid-season 'retooling' (the introduction of the regular 'Dash X'-character) and had and originally unaired episode called "The Broken Record", and an unproduced episode "The Jolly Rogers". It also spawned a second series, Eerie Indiana: The Other Dimension
, one year after FOX ran out of NBC episodes to show, as well as a series of spin-off novels.
The series was created by José Rivera (later author of the movie The Motorcycle Diaries
) and Karl Schaefer, with well-known 'family horror' director Joe Dante (Gremlins, The ‘Burbs, Small Soldiers, The Hole 3D
) serving as creative consultant and occasional director.
It was a cinematic, single-camera show, with first-person narration, which sometimes broke the fourth wall, never more than in the final episode Reality Takes a Holiday
, where Marshall pulls a television script out of his mailbox, and then suddenly finds himself starring in a TV show called Eerie, Indiana
, and other characters adressing him in his real name as Omri - predating the movie The Truman Show
by 6 years. This startling episode was one of two directed by frequent Malcolm in the Middle
director Ken Kwapis
, while another one was directed by leading MITM director and co-producer Todd Holland
Actually, the still shown above mimics the scene from the intro where Marshall briefly looks at the camera to let the audience in on the weirdness he experiences in his new hometown.
Story: Marshall Teller, a recent transplant from New Jersey, and Simon Holmes, an Eerie native, investigate the weirdness that inhabits the titular town. It would be easier for them if the town's residents didn't refuse to see themselves as anything but normal.
Marshall Teller's voiceover introducing the episodes (extended version):
To whom it may concern. If you're reading this document, it means I'm either dead - or disappeared under mysterious circumstances. My name is Marshall Teller. Not long ago I was living in New Jersey just across the river from New York City. It was crowded, polluted, and full of crime. I loved it. But my parents wanted a better life for my sister and me - so we moved to a place so wholesome, so squeaky clean, you could only find it on TV. Unfortunately, nothing could be further from the truth. Sure, my new home town looks normal enough, but look again. What's wrong with this picture? The American dream come true, right? Wrong. Nobody believes me, but this is the center of weirdness for the entire planet. Item, a guy that looks suspiciously like Elvis lives on my paper route. Item, Bigfoot eats out of my trash. Item, a bizarre housewife cult in town has been sealing up their kids in giant rubber kitchenware so they don't age. And now, just when I thought things couldn't get any worse, I discovered that in Eerie, even man's best friend is up to no good. When I try to tell this to my family, they just think I'm weird. Better weird than dead. Eerie, Indiana. My home sweet home. Still don't believe me? You will.
JoBlo's series verdict (http://www.joblo.com/
"A definite picker-upper for anyone who appreciated this avant-garde, and still very entertaining, TV show in the first place. Each episode is a lot like the X-Files, in that it builds a major mystery or creepiness factor, only to have it all play out in about 20 minutes and provide you with plenty of laughs, scares and moments of major quirkiness as you go. The series is about as far removed from your contemporary sitcoms as possible, many of which tend to concentrate on the generic and obvious. If you're bored of watching reality shows or cookie-cutter sitcoms that resemble one another -- other than the fact that their leads are played by different failed movie actors -- pick this series up today and enjoy!"