From Dusk Till Dawn: Pandemonium Review

Chaos ensues deliciously in this week's aptly named episode of From Dusk Till Dawn from El Rey.

Okay, so according to where we left off last week, this is the part in the movie where all hell breaks loose, Richie gets turned, most everyone either gets turned or dies, and then George Clooney and Juliette Lewis are the only ones to make it out alive to see the light of day. Of course, there are two problems with that storyline: the fact that Carlos in the movie wasn’t in on the carnage and/or the owner of the place, and the fact that it would leave us with very little to do for the rest of the season, let alone future seasons (*knock on wood*).

So “Pandemonium” is where we see both the ‘tribute to old’ and the ‘branching out to new’ start to make headway, as well as some tasteful and not at all excessive gore. The changes from the original are good, and some are subtle, and the things that stayed the same I was happy to see as well.

First, let’s talk the changes. The feeding frenzy starts not because the time had come, but because our friend Ranger Gonzalez tried to kill Richie and Santánico (the Goddess) wouldn’t have it. She vamped out (Culebra-ed out?) and leapt from the stage onto Gonzalez and proceeded to knock him around. This, combined with people starting to shoot at her, prompted the doors to be barred, the windows gated closed and all hell to almost literally break loose. The nine representatives’ (of the Nine Lords of the Dark) existence is in itself a change, but it was both interesting to watch them treat the chaos and gore as a show, as well as the continuing storyline of the Culebras behind the scenes.

For things that stayed the same or were treated respectfully with only minor changes, I have to say my favorite is the band. In the original, the band is made up of vampires who continue to rock until the initial fighting’s done and then vanish in a bit of pyrotechnics. They kept that mostly the same, though they obviously didn’t sing the same song as in the original movie; and while they didn’t vanish in fire, they did make sure we caught their names and wished our survivors a good night.

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Story-wise, we saw a lot of Seth thinking Richie had betrayed them, Scott thinking Jacob didn’t have it in him to kill (even if vampires), Kate got to use a chainsaw to slice some lovely Culebras, and the nine representatives themselves dealt with some betrayal of their own as Santanico offered them the choice of joining them against the nine lords or dying.

To quote a completely different movie and genre, “They chose… poorly.”

Sex Machine, aka Professor Tanner, gave some lively if a bit dense explanations of the Culebras from his studies, marveled (yep, he almost geeked out) at the architecture and glyphs on the walls of the place, and all that after he shot his crotch gun at the first few vamps. After the second wave from the Culebras, we see Scott tossed down a shaft into Culebras-knows where, a nice stake-bomb Richie and Seth put together, and Sex Machine fire his load. No, really. He’s out of bullets for his crotch gun.

As we learn more about the Culebras at the Titty Twister (aka the Temple) we are seeing they’re actually at the bottom rung of the snake-vampire food chain. They’re trying to stage a revolt of sorts, but this is obviously intrigue we never knew existed.

Lastly, since Santanico couldn’t reach Richie psychically, she strode out and tried to talk/charm him in person…  just as Gonzalez, who we didn’t even barely know was alive at this point, shot him in the back. She dragged Richie away from everyone else, so if he turns it’s sort of on-par with the movie. If she offers to turn him and he refuses, then we’re looking at new territory there as well. So, Scott is lost somewhere in the temple and Richie got dragged off, probably to get an offer he might not be able to refuse. I know we already got Pandemonium, but I think the chaos will only continue…

What do you guys think will happen next week? What would you like to see stay the same as the movie? What would you like to see different? Leave a comment and let us know!

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4 out of 5