S2E48 Crypt Keeper Confidential

Odds are you’re here, reading this because you love “Tales From The Crypt” and its iconic Crypt Keeper character. We don’t blame you.; we love both of them, too!

We started this season (some 48 episodes ago) with a conversation that had never been had before about how exactly The Crypt Keeper came to be. He didn’t just drop from the sky “as is”.

Actually, it took the work of four different people to create him.

How To Make A Crypt Keeper

First, there was Kevin Yagher – the guy who created the puppet and all its animatronic bits and pieces.

Then actor John Kassir gave the Crypt Keeper its amazing voice. And that laugh. Wanna know where it came from? John will tell that story!

But, if you watch or listen to a Crypt Keeper segment from any season one episode and then any season three episode, you’ll notice a huge difference.

From Puppet To “Playah”

Lots of huge differences. That’s when Gil and I stepped in and took over writing and producing Crypt.

Among the changes we made to the show – in addition to getting the budget back under control and going after the biggest stars we could get – like Michael J. Fox and Kirk Douglas – we took the show back to its EC Comics roots as ironic, gleefully warped morality tales.

We also reimagined the Crypt Keeper and gave him a rich, interior life. We turned him from a scary puppet into a franchise. While I handled all the writing chores, Gil produced all the Crypt Keeper segments and directed a lot of them – including the Crypt Keeper segments in both Crypt feature films.

The truth is, if you take any of those four people out of this equation? There’s no equation – and we’re not having this conversation.

How do you make an iconic character that will stand the test of time? Well, there’s no book telling you how to do it. But, there is this episode.

In keeping with this episode’s “confidential” nature, we strip off the bandages and reveal plenty of secrets. How the Crypt Keeper’s whole existence is entirely accidental… how John Kassir created the CK’s iconic laugh… how writing the segments was like being tortured – by the Crypt Keeper… why there’ll probably never be another new episode of Tales From The Crypt.

What surprised all four of us (when we spoke) is how despite knowing that the CK was, is, always will be a puppet, each of us succumbed to his “magic”. That’s the strange thing about iconic characters like the Crypt Keeper.

They really do transcend their world and find a comfy place in ours.

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