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John’s Horror Corner: Puppet Master II (1991)

March 17, 2013

MY CALL:  Not nearly as good, charming or fun as the original.  But it’s still worth it if you loved the part one and even more so if you are hoping for something silly and weird.  Just lower your expectations…okay, lower them a lot…with beer.  IF YOU LIKE THIS WATCH:  I trust you saw Puppet Master (1989), which was far better.  SEQUEL SIDEBAR:  This movie picks up right where Puppet Master (1989) leaves off.

A team of four paranormal investigators and older psychic Camille (Nita Talbot; Frightmare, Amityville 1992) venture to the very same hotel as in Puppet Master (1989) to learn just what Dr. Whitaker (part 1’s survivor) saw that drove him mad.  [There’s a good way to reduce the budget of an already low budget horror: use the exact same set!]

Things get stupidly weird when the oddly wardrobed Eriquee Chanee, a thick accented man mummified in gauze, introduces himself as the hotel’s owner.  We quickly learn that he is actually Toulon, reanimated by his faithful puppets.  Listening to his over-hammed up alchemical lectures to his puppets in that awful accent is truly painful.  Puppet Master was a fun, playful romp that didn’t take itself too seriously. This character turns the franchise in a farcical direction.

So here’s Eriquee Chanee (actually Toulon), a Germanish-accented dude with a French name.  It looks like the invisible man started pimping to survive the down economy.  He even has a cane and some thick chains to complement the robe.

And, look!  Evidently Blade was designed to look just like Mssr. Chanee.

What’s worse is that this part two’s Toulon lacks the gentle, kind nature of part one’s Toulon.  They also gave him that ridiculous accent and basically made him into an evil, over-the-top villain with uber-weird motives that rely on freshly squeezed human brain juice serving as the necro-biofuel of eternal undeath.  In part one, he was just a normal sounding nice old guy who made breathed life into his puppets by whispering some ancient Egyptian incantations; it was much more graceful and in better taste.

Generally, the acting is more wooden than the puppets, which come with their own amusing flavors.  Pinhead has man hands (as in a stop-motion puppet with live-action human hands), Leech Woman magically regurgitates leeches, Tunneler has a drill on his head, Blade has a hook for one hand and a blade for the other but somehow seems the nicest, Jester strikes me as pure evil, and newcomer Torch has a flame thrower.  Sadly, the puppet kills pale in comparison to part one.

Bull’s eye, Tunneler!

Leech Woman

Newcomer: Torch, lightin’ it up!

This movie just gets weirder and weirder as it persists and this is largely the fault of this R-rated cartoonish Toulon character. The movie reaches its climactic ridiculousness when Toulon drinks some potion he makes from human brain juice, then slits his own throat above the open mouth of a dead victim he has fashioned into a man-sized female puppet so that the puppet-woman can drink it and assume the life of his wife who died by Nazi hands decades ago.  There!  Now did you really think I could say so many weird things in just one run-on sentence?  I thought not!

We lost a lot of puppets out there.  Good puppets!  Tunneler, you will be missed.
Tunneler is not the only puppet casualty in this movie.

Toulon looks like he lost a few steps over the last few decades in the grave.

So he kills a paranormal investigator, fashions his body into this, and then moves his soul into this ugly thing to live out eternity looking like a cheap wax museum yuppie.

Watch this for a beer, boobs and blood night with the guys. The movie will provide ample doses of the latter two, so you just need to bring a six pack.

16 Comments leave one →
  1. March 20, 2013 10:41 am

    Of all the amazingly horrible Puppet Master films, I think I like this one best. Mainly for the reasons you dislike it. It’s bat-shit crazy, and doesn’t apologize for it. “Bride of Frankenstein” subplot? Yes, please! Man-sized puppets way before the reboot abomination of “Curse of the Puppet Master?” Score!

    • johnleavengood permalink
      March 20, 2013 10:58 am

      Thanks for the comment. I certainly don’t “dis” like this movie on an overall basis. I agree it’s a great 12-pack bro-down flick for some good laughs with al the silliness. But, yes, I did like parts 1 and 3 more. Please stay tuned and share your opinion as I go through the rest of the Puppet Master series in the next few weeks.


  1. John’s Horror Corner: Puppet Master III: Toulon’s Revenge (1991) | Movies, Films & Flix
  2. John’s Horror Corner [INDEX] | Movies, Films & Flix
  3. John’s Horror Corner: Puppet Master 4 | Movies, Films & Flix
  4. Puppetmaster 1989 « Crazy Goblin magazine
  5. John’s Horror Corner: Puppet Master 5 (1994) | Movies, Films & Flix
  6. John’s Horror Corner: Curse of the Puppet Master (1998), and what should have been the death of a franchise | Movies, Films & Flix
  7. John’s Horror Corner: Retro Puppet Master (1999), the seventh installment of a franchise that just doesn’t seem to know when to quit | Movies, Films & Flix
  8. John’s Horror Corner: Puppet Master: The Legacy (2003), this incredibly annoying eighth franchise installment serves as a nothing more than a review of the past movies with loads of stock footage | Movies, Films & Flix
  9. John’s Horror Corner: Puppet Master: Axis of Evil (2010) | Movies, Films & Flix
  10. Bad Channels (1992), a goreless flick favoring cheap comedy over horror | Movies, Films & Flix
  11. John’s Horror Corner: Meridian (1990), a Beauty and the Beast romantic fantasy story crafted by a horrorsmith | Movies, Films & Flix
  12. John’s Horror Corner: Subspecies (1991), making a B+ movie out of a B-movie budget | Movies, Films & Flix
  13. John’s Horror Corner: Subspecies III: Bloodlust (1994) | Movies, Films & Flix
  14. Bad Movie Tuesday: The Dungeonmaster (1984; aka Ragewar), another sword and sorcery fantasy B-movie with a laser-shooting techno-anthology spin. | Movies, Films & Flix

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