16 April 2014

Witching Time (1980)
50 min.
Airdate: September 13, 1980
Directed by Don Leaver.
With Jon Finch, Prunella Gee, Patricia Quinn, Ian McCulloch, and Lennard Pearce.
Jose Cruz
Composer David Winter (Finch) stays up late scoring a horror film, one which stars his own beautiful wife, Mary (Gee). But while he works at their home in the country, sheís off in London sleeping with physician friend Charles (McCulloch).

With a thunderous storm on the horizon, David goes to batten down the horse stables when he discovers a cloaked woman amongst the bales of hay. She claims to be Lucinda Jessop, a witch from the 17th century who escaped her puritanical persecutors through magic.

She soon makes David her own tortured servant and attempts to extricate his harlot wife from this existence.

Hammerís first outing into TV land is an enjoyable twist on some of the very themes that the studio made their staple in the 50s and 60s. Gone is the dark masculine presence of Chris Leeís Count Dracula, here replaced with the feline evil of witch Lucinda (an intense Patricia Quinn).

Not only that, but we get a real treat in seeing Mary show some real final-girl nerve by breaking free of her hypnotized spouseís clutches and dunking the housebreaking sorceress in true medieval fashion. Now thatís girl power.

The episode may be a little light on the horror, but itís got enough spunk that ensures that itís always a good time. A promising start to a solid genre series.

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