Let’s be honest, in the horror world is there anyone out there that is cooler than Joe Bob Briggs? He’s smart, he’s funny, he’s an avid horror fan, and he just wants to make you laugh. If only there were more people in the horror world like him. He’s pretty much some sort of amazing.
Joe Bob Briggs’s acting persona is that of an unapologetic and unrefined redneck and male chauvinist with an avowed love of the drive-in theatre. He specializes in humorous but appreciative reviews of b-movies and cult films, which he calls drive-in movies (as distinguished from “indoor bullstuff”). In addition to his usual parody of urbane, high-brow movie criticism, his columns characteristically include colorful tales of woman-troubles and high-spirited brushes with the law, tales which inevitably conclude with his rush to catch a movie at a local drive-in, usually with female companionship. The reviews typically end with a brief rating of the “high points” of the movie in question, including the types of action (represented by nouns naming objects used in fight scenes suffixed with -fu), the number of bodies, number of female breasts bared, the notional number of pints of blood spilled, and for appropriately untoward movies a “vomit meter”. A typical such concluding paragraph would be, “No dead bodies. One hundred seventeen breasts. Multiple aardvarking. Lap dancing. Cage dancing. Convenience-store dancing. Blindfold aardvarking. Blind-MAN aardvarking. Lesbo Fu. Pool cue-fu. Drive-In Academy Award nominations for Tane McClure. Joe Bob says check it out.” “Aardvarking” is Brigg’s euphemism for sexual intercourse.
From 1995 to 2000, he hosted “Monstervision” for TNT. The show often featured Briggs giving a monologue about certain things in life, including his four ex-wives (usually “Wanda Bodeine”). He often made fun of the “scissoring” (editing) of the films, saying “Has Ted (Turner) been crackin’ down on us again?” This led to a famous running gag during a Halloween marathon of Friday the 13th movies in which strange occurrences kept happening throughout the night, leading up to Joe Bob realizing that it was Ted Turner trying to kill him, the final scene of the event led to Joe Bob giving an impassioned apology to Turner, claiming he was an amazing person, before the video feed cut off eerily. A similar stunt was staged in Blair Witch-themed host segments for a marathon showing of Carrie, Child’s Play and Phantasm one night, with the host mysteriously missing. For Super Bowl Sunday in 1997, he hosted a 16-hour marathon of monster movies from New Orleans starting with The Omen.
This week at Slasher Studios, we salute you Joe Bob Briggs and we hope that you come back to “tear the heart out of Saturday night”.