Night of the Demons 2 (1994)

Night of the Demons 2 was actually the first film of the Night of the Demons series I saw. I didn’t know a thing about how its demon “star” Angela was supposed to be a rebuff to the more popular Freddy and Jason. Same as with the first one, I’m again surprised by the ovary sexuality in this one. Sure, I remember the boobs, but the fact Night of the Demons 2 has something for everything surely few over my 14 year-old head.

Case in point: the film opens with two boys using binoculars to spy on the Catholic schoolgirls changing in the dorm next door. That’s not shocking. But my 14 year-old mind totally blocked out how the horny boys themselves were only wearing boxer-briefs. Giving the whole sequence a strange homoerotic vibe. I’ve never been as thankful for my (only) one year of Catholic schooling than I am now…

Unless everyone in Catholic school is as awesome as Sister “Save some room for the Holy Ghost” Gloria (Jennifer Rhodes). She swings her Rosary like nunchuks a la Father Jon McGruder from Dead Alive, uses her yardstick like a sword, and tosses off brilliant religious rhymes (“A kiss is a sin when it is an upper persuasion for a lower invasion”) like they’re nothing. She’s the filmic embodiment of the MC5’s “Sister Anne,” only without the “Ten Commandments tattooed on her arms,” and she doesn’t rise up from the dead. Sister Gloria doesn’t even have the time to die.

Long gone are the stereotypical punks from Night of the Demons, replaced instead with a trio of rebellious Catholic schoolgirls – Shirley (Zoe Trilling), Terri (Christine Taylor), and Bibi (Christi Harris). That’s right, Christine Taylor, star of Nicolodeon’s Hey, Dude stars here! As a troublemaker no less!

This time Angela is coupled with her sister, Melissa/”Mouse” (Merle Kennedy). The troubled, nerdy, “goody two shoes” character who acts as the sacrifice to free Angela from Hull House.

There’s also a corresponding set of male characters, straight down to a nerd who studies demonology, but I still can’t figure out why. Perry (Robert Jayne) here is the only one who knows how to exorcize the demons, while Mouse is the bait. But I can’t imagine why one would need to split those roles apart. Surely one nerd could serve both functions.

I don’t know why, but for some reason I always imagined these films taking place in LA. That the Hull House was located mid-ghetto, and its haunting kept the gang bangers away. But I guess it’s just Everyville, USA judging from the horrid metal that gets played.

Shocking no one, the one girl who looks like Angela gets possessed by Angela. Angela introduces herself at the school’s Fall Festival by performing a dance routine that’s really only inappropriate considering the music. Apparently one inexplicable turn deserves another, so Shirley’s breasts transform into hands. (A nice jump-scare, but by no means as awesome as the whirling, lawn-mower blade breast illusion from Leprechaun 2.)

Angela is now running free, away from Hull House, due to some haunted lip stick that was taken off the property. Which is interesting only because the possession is enacted by a demon tongue a la 1993’s Jason Goes to Hell. Angela kidnaps Mouse, for another sacrifice, this one real this time, and is chased back to Hull House for the grand finale.

At Hull House, Night of the Demons 2’s inexplicableness goes for the glory. As even the horror genre’s conventions get pushed aside. Perry, the virtuous man-boy, meets his demise via a spiked bat to the head; an out of the blue death that took me by surprise. Everyone expects Father Bob (Rod McCary) to bite it, as he is a stick-in-the-mud, and woefully underdeveloped. But Perry? He’s expected to ride off into the daybreak with Mouse to immaculately conceive little genius babies.

Even Angela’s death, while not too unusual for a video game villain, plays out bizarrely on-screen. Angela gets defeated once with holy water, and then returns as a giant snake. Which, had she returned as a robotic snake, would’ve been a page out of Mega Man, not an 80s slasher.

Uninteresting any way you slice it, however, as Angela’s just a snake, not a rattlesnake. It could’ve worked as a snake too, had Angela done something besides twitch and slither on the floor. Things as they are, Angela moved faster and smoother on her own two feet. Not creating the impression you want when your head demon is in the grand finale.


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