After seven episodes of mind games, flashbacks, murderous plots and traumatizing uses of household objects we’ve finally reached the season finale of Chucky. As the short, cackling form of Charles Lee Ray made the switch to television with noticable style, everyone involved should be commended for breathing new life into a franchise that’s been kicking, screaming and – not importantly – killing since 1988. Most of all, I suppose, we should thank creator Don Mancini whose Hitchcockian style from the Curse and Cult Of Chucky was a surprisingly easy fit for the small screen. However, during this season of domestic secrets and homicidal peer pressure, one particular group I’ve forgot to credit is the people directly responsible for literally bring Chucky to life: the special effects artists. The reduced budgets of the last couple of movies have meant less state of the art methods were used which had the odd side effect of Chucky seeming like a bad actor despite whatever twisted genius voice actor Brad Dourif was having him say. However, now that puppet master Tony Gardner’s animatronics have returned to replace the hand puppet version, Chucky can now lip sync again and it’s been a genuine joy to see him looking like his old self… Anyway – now that we’ve made it to the end, it’s time to fuckin’ play.
Chucky has finally laid all of his ducks in a row. Not only has he finally convinced one of the kids from our cast of characters to snap and resort to brutal murder as an answer to life’s problems (step forward weak-willed Junior) but he has a virtual army of Good Guy dolls stashed at his childhood home ready for resurrection now that he’s got a new friend to the end. Jake and Lexy get some much needed answers from Chucky hunter Kyle who then drugs them in an attempt to keep them safe while her adopted brother Andy searches for his long time plastic nemesis at Junior’s house.
However while the white hats are still metaphorically wandering around in the dark, the bad guys have all reunited to put Chucky’s masterplan in action which involves siccing the 72 strong Chucky army on needy children all across the country after a community screening of James Whale’s Frankenstein, but as usual, the domestic squabbles of Tiffany and Chucky threaten to derail everything as Mica’s identity ricochets between her real self and her Chucky possession.
As a brutal end to everything approaches, who will survive to make it to the already announced season 2?
Chucky thus far has been a wild ride and a defiantly triumphant return to form for cinema’s greatest devil doll, but as Game Of Thones reminded us, a seadon is only really as great as it’s finale and while we don’t get the mouthwateringly apocalyptic sight of an army of Chucky’s bearing down on terrified townsfolk that we all secretly wished had happened, the series still finishes strong.
More of an ensemble piece than any other the more character based episode thus far, Episode 8 is chiefly concerned with wrapping things up as chaotically as it budget and runtime will allow and admittedly certain opportunities are missed. Apart from being denied a fiery Chuck-pocalypce, we also never get that Andy/Chucky show down we’ve been waiting for and Kyle and Mica’s arcs either just stop or are just meat to be fed into the grinder of what Season 2 could possibly bring (hint: nothing good, if you’re Mica). But thankfully the show avoids any true disappointments by giving you far more affordable moments instead such as Chucky and Tiffany’s most recent spat involving a gruesome decapitation, Junior’s plot thread ending with redemption for both him and Lexy and Chucky launching a one doll assault against a cinema full of patrons as he scuttled around on the floor and stabs people up through their seats. However, as the episode races to it’s satisfying conclusion, it’s best aspect is that we get an steady stream of memorable moments from both Chucky and Tiffany (who winningly shows up at the benefit as special guest Jennifer Tilly – a genius in-joke that’s still paying for itself) that keep the morbid laughs coming. Best of all is arguably a Chucky addressing the newly awakened army of dolls only for it to devolve into a debate about where to draw the line as to how young their victims should be – six or under, if you’re wondering. Unless they’re twins, of course.
As the show wraps up, perhaps the most affecting proof we need about how well the show worked is that the newer cast isn’t left with any dangling plot threads while Andy and Mica get shitloads and if the second season moves on with an entirely new cast of characters and leaves Jake, Lexy and Devon behind it would be a genuine shame as the newbies have genuinely endeared themselves. However, if they don’t, we still get the fantastic sight of Jake throttling a Chucky until his eyes bloodily pop out (not sure how that works with a doll, be who cares – it’s fucking awesome) and we’re left a metric ton of unanswered questions to keep us going. What’s the deal with the return if the Tiffany doll and what is she going to do with Andy and a truck load of Chucky’s? What does life have in store for the newly quadriplegic Mica, now that the human Tiffany is finally ready to move on from doll possessing bad boys? And who’s glove is that at the graveside? Could it be Kyle, or perhaps the return of yet another legacy character like Tyler or or a grown up, human Glen (oh that would be amazing – especially if he’s still being played by Billy Boyd!)
Loaded with nifty callbacks for fans (The screening of Frankenstein is a nod to Tiffany watching Bride Of Frankenstein in Bride Of Chucky and of course Chucky can’t help himself breaking into hysterical laughter during the scene where the little girl drowns and there’s even a name check from Chris Sarandon’s character from the orginal movie), yet still relatively straight forward for newbies, Chucky: The TV Series can only be considered a vastly entertaining win whose sophomore season can’t come soon enough so we can get another fix of that red haired, asshole Teddy Ruxpin with a knife.
He’s still our friend – but this ain’t the end.