Hitchhiker, The: Volume 3 (DVD)

The Hitchhiker Volume 3 DVD (click for larger image)Starring Page Fletcher, Michael Madsen, Michael Ironside, Bill Paxton, Lauren Hutton

Various directors

Distributed by HBO Home Video

Here we go again. It’s another trip down memory lane for those of us who were babysat by the television during the 80s. There is more big hair, big acting and big WTF’s in store for everyone once again as we take a look at The Hitchhiker</I>’s third volume from HBO.

Volume 3 is just the same as the first two. The introductions and super-imposed titles are the same, Page Fletcher is still the Hitchhiker and the video quality is still questionable. There are a few changes however. One of them, surprisingly, is that the quality of the stories rose up ever so slightly. This reviewer is not talking about large leaps but just a couple of steps in a more organized direction.

On a sad note many of the stories still remain forgettable. While one may marvel at how young and different some actors looked decades ago, the roles they play and the things they do drift away from the mind when the next story starts up. There is a small diamond in this rough, albeit a very small diamond in a large, depressing rough.

Bill Paxton portrays one of the most memorable characters in the past three DVD sets of The Hitchhiker. His story, “Made for Each Other,” is the most humorous and disturbing of the lot. Paxton plays a convenience store serial killer whose wide-eyed, fun with a gun attitude makes him instantly likable. He befriends a meek little man and takes him off to go get a hooker. Not just any hooker, mind you. They are looking for an 8.4, you know, the kind with “pimples on their asses.” By the end you feel like you’ve just watched a Shakespearean tragedy but without the culture, talented writing or wit.

The Hitchhiker Volume 3 DVD (click for larger image)Now if only all of the other stories could have been this fun. The rest pretty much play out nearly the same. The lead character is usually killed, but sometimes not before he or she has some quick sex and spouts out some libido diminishing dialogue with sub-soap opera level acting. Sure, it could be fun in a “it’s so bad, it’s good” way, but that is not the case (and we have MST3K for that already anyway). But if you must indulge, make sure you keep your eye out for strange mistakes like a crew member’s hand reaching into frame, crew reflections in glass and plot holes a million.

“What about the special features, Kryten?” Oh, you are in for something special all right! I can’t tell you enough how cool these special features are. They are to be watched over and over again just because they are so amazing. Wait, dammit, there are NO special features. HBO, why? Not one commentary? You couldn’t even get Michael Madsen to do anything? He was just in a damn Uwe Boll movie! You could have had him doing the damn chicken dance with Lauren Hutton. He could have even tried to kick a field goal through that woman’s …. oh, nevermind.

Like I’ve said before, this set is great for fans of the show, but newcomers are just not going to be impressed with it since Tales From the Crypt was so much more entertaining. If you do have a thing for big hair and mullets, then you will be satisfied.

Special Features
There’s nothing special to be found here at all

2 1/2 out of 5

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Mike Phalin

Mike Phalin is a contributing writer, reality television star and engineer.

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