Feb 20, 2013

Grandmother's House: Gay Kid Saves The Day

Threatened gay-vague kids were surprisingly popular during the 1980s.  Lee H. Montgomery in Night Shadows, Harley Cross in The Believers, Jeb Adams in Flowers in the Attic, the kids of Clownhouse.   But no one was more threatened, or more gay-vague, than Eric Foster:

1. Death House (1987), aka Zombie Death House, directed by action star John Saxon: the inmates at a federal prison go zombie, break out, and terrorize Luke Hagen (Eric).

2. Cry Wilderness (1987): a Bigfoot kidnaps Paul Cooper (Eric), but turns out to be nice.  He's really terrorized by an escaped tiger.

3. Dark Room (1988): Abused Perry (Eric) grows up to be a psycho-killer (played by Aarin Teich).

4. Grandmother's House (1989).  After their Dad dies, David (Eric) and his older brother Lynn (Kim Valentine) must live with their grandparents.  Grandpa is played with threatening intensity by Len Lesser, Uncle Leo on Seinfeld, left.  Grandma is played by Ida Lee.

During the 1980s Satanic ritual abuse panic, even relatives had hidden secrets and malicious motives, and David soon realizes that something is wrong.  Bodies are found in the neighborhood.

By this point, Eric was fourteen or fifteen, with feminine mannerisms that marked him as gay, especially when David hangs out at a public pool, grooving on the teenage boys.  He buddy-bonds with a teenage hunk named Raymond.

They see Grandpa carrying a body into the basement.  They catch glimpses of a lady with a butcher knife and a crazy smile.  David calls the police, but no one believes him.  Then the lady traps them in the house.

Guess what?  It's not Grandma.

Let's review: nuclear families are evil and threatening.  But the gay-vague kid saves the day.

 Eric was having a pubescent growth spurt, so in some scenes the actor is an inch taller and his voice has deepened.

Apparently four movies were enough.  After a few episodes as a high school kid on The Wonder Years, he retired from show business.

1 comment:

  1. I remember this film from the days when it ran incessantly on cable TV. For some reason I found it more upsetting and disorienting than the average horror film. Still, it wasn't nearly as transgressive as Sleepaway Camp, with its truly shock ending.


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