Back in the 80's and 90's late night TV wasn't the desolated wasteland of COPS reruns, infomercials and CSI: Miami reruns. Back then you never knew what you were going to come across while channel surfing the ominous waves of cable TV. There were still insomnia curing shows and reruns a plenty, but sprinkled in between those snore inducing broadcasts was programming wondrous and bizarre.
TNT's MonsterVision and USA's Up All Night were hugely influential in my formative years and beyond. I can recall many a night hunkered down in my bedroom watching a myriad of bizarre flicks all thanks to the likes of Joe Bob Briggs, Rhonda Shear and Gilbert Gottfried. I could go on and on about these shows (and I just may in future postings!) but the point is that one of the greatest of these late night oddities was the incredible Night Flight.
A four hour block of music videos, short films, cartoons, documentaries, stand-up comedy and everything in between. Night Flight's original run was from 1981 to 1988...later being syndicated in 1990 and episodes popping up in shorter, condensed format well in to the later half of the 90's. It was in the mid 90's that I was finally exposed to the show. By that time it was on a random schedule so it was luck of the draw when it came to getting to see it.
It was during one of my nocturnal channel surfing excursions on a Friday or Saturday night in high school that I first came upon The Thing What Lurked In The Tub. I was instantly obsessed with the short. It was everything that I loved in a B-Movie crammed into a two minute cartoon. As time went by it slowly faded from memory until it showed up in a random rerun of MTV's Liquid Television.
The entire short takes place in the bathroom of a loathsome fellow named Lugmeyer. We get some exposition from a news report on the radio about toxic chemicals being dumped into the city reservoir and the "possibly related" story of three separate bathroom mutilations. While we're listening to the chipper newscaster, we get our first glimpse of the gooey octopus-like Thing itself as it bubbles up in the tub.
Lugmeyer enters the bathroom hungover and moaning about his aching head. Standing in front of the sink, he coughs up a pair of red panties. Why are there panties in his throat? How did he even get those there without choking? Why the hell is The Girl From Ipanema playing on the radio?
Anyway, ol' Lugmeyer searches the medicine cabinet looking for some aspirin to combat his headache. The Thing closes in behind him ready to strike and devour. That's when things go sour for our poor lovable toxic monster. A rather amusing ending to an amusing short. I live for stuff like this. It's the litting things you know? It makes me happy knowing that there are little slices of fun such as The Thing What Lurked In The Tub in the world.
In searching the wide and vast internet, I've never seen an in depth review of the short. This isn't exactly what I'd call an in depth review, either. It's not like I'm presenting an academic dissertation on the ramifications of introducing toxic substances into public reservoirs and getting all Freudian on it. Hell no! BUT, as far as I know, I am the first person to dedicate an entire post to it. We're topping 500 words here people! FIVE HUNDRED! All for two minutes and eighteen seconds of animated lunacy! If that isn't love and devotion, then I don't know what is!
So by this point, I would imagine that you'd love to see this cartoon. Well, you're in luck because you can watch it right here! Enjoy!