The Chainsaw Sally Show
The Chainsaw Sally Show is a serial killer sitcom which sometimes shows creative exuberance, and other times dull tedium.
In the first episode, Sally tries to borrow some books from the library, only to be rebuked by the male librarian. In response, Sally tracks him down later that night, brutally murders him, and then shows up the next day, declaring herself the new librarian.
Had the series maintained that dynamic, a sociopath overreacting to slight conflicts, it would have made for a more-interesting protagonist and better comedic potential. Instead, the character of Sally gets muddled. For several episodes, she’s an avenging angel, out to protect her library assistant Poe, and then in the next she’s an irrational killer who murders just for the perverse joy of it.
Because her character is ill-defined, you can’t really connect with her, neither to root for her, or fear her. Her personality and view of the world is not skewed enough to be inherently funny, and her sadism is not convincing enough to make her scary or even creepy. The actress playing her does a fine enough job, but I think the unrefined script lets her down. Sally’s brother Ruby, played to delightful excess by Azman Toy, is a better-realized character, and a wholly-convincing eccentric killer.
The episodes run about twenty minutes each (some less) and usually involve a short hunt followed by a protracted kill. There’s no real dramatic arc to any of the stand-alone kills, and each episode ends up feeling like a half-finished idea, more like a sketch than a complete story. There is a larger plot line throughout the series involving a ‘Cowboy’ and a woman with large breasts who wears tight sweaters, but it doesn’t really go anywhere and ultimately fizzles out at the end. A secondary story involving Poe being bullied at school fares a little better, but is mostly just a series of plot points with no dramatic effect on any of the characters.
The ‘movie’ included in the set, ‘Grindhog Day,’ does a better job of giving the victims a background, but it doesn’t amount to much in the end, as they soon become faceless chainsaw fodder.
A lot of screen time is devoted to killing; unfortunately, very little money is devoted likewise. The result is endless, boring scenes of Sally swinging a chainsaw at the camera while low quality fake blood is thrown on her. I can’t help but think that this is a fetish come-to-life for series creator (and husband of star April Monique Burril) Jimmyo Burril.
The DVDs are pretty cheap, at $15 for 11 episodes and an hour long movie, and I guess it’s worth it at that price. There are some good moments throughout the series, and if you share Burril’s fetish for bloody women, you’ll be very satisfied. The Chainsaw Sally Show is a novel concept, sloppily executed.