Sometimes you just can’t win! You need to make a few bucks and you take a job at a cleaners, but the laundry press is possessed by a demon and starts killing everyone and the Christmas party is BYOB. This is the premise of The Mangler. This laundry press gets exposed to a bunch of different bloods – animal and virgin human, which summons a demon to possess the laundry press. The laundry machine goes a killing spree, but my collars have never looked crisper! I always liked this story because it’s so awesomely bad. It’s really corny and silly, but unintentionally so. It would be great as a Rifftrax.
As I was reading, I couldn’t help thinking, Self, it really is EASY to summon demons in Maine. It makes you wonder why anyone visits or lives there? Sure, the fall foliage is nice, but you’re always knee deep in clowns, werewolves, vampires, large rats, ghosts, creepy college students, aliens, more ghosts, the devil (kinda), cultists, creepy rednecks, slime beasts, and pederasts. I’ve been to A LOT of Maine and I will attest that the above villains are truly a nuisance and they are all close talkers!
The Mangler is a fun read because it turns into a quick-paced detective story. The cops Hunton and Jackson become ghost busters and try to get the demon out of the machine. I know it’s a short story, but they really embrace the whole – it’s a demon laundry machine really fast. There’s no time where people are like, What? This is stupid! Really stupid! It starts getting really goofy when the machine chases its victims down a gnaws them to death.
At the end, I know it’s not supposed to be a comedy, but it chases the cops around and eats one of them. It’s just kinda silly. Of course, this story is really needed as unintentional comic relief because some of the other stories are just so depressing in Night Shift like “The Last Rung on the Ladder” ….ughhh- best cure for a happy thought. Really, if you think you’re a bad sibling, read “The Last Rung on the Ladder” and you’ll feel waaaaay better about yourself.
The Mangler is not his best story- it’s actually really dumb, but it reads like a fun bad movie. It’s the Sharknado 1 of Stephen King if not ALL literature. In short, it IS entertaining. You have a big iron up to no good and two incompetent policemen trying to save the day. It needs a SYFY run desperately! Happy Horrorthon!