****(out of 4 stars)
Carrion Death is a Tales from the Crypt episode from the third season. The original airdate was in June of 1991.
Earl Raymond Digs (Kyle MacLachlan) has escaped prison and death row. He robs a bank and kills an officer. After fleeing the scene, a cop on a motorcycle (George Deloy) gives chase through the desert. After a game of "Chicken", Digs shoots out the back tire of the cop's motorcycle. The cop is catapulted off the bike. The bike is still in motion and runs into Digs' getaway car. There's an explosion but Digs escapes before the car erupts in a blaze.
With the cop out of the way, (momentarily) Dig's next move is to cross the Mexican border to freedom.
The cop regains consciousness and begins to follow Digs on foot through the hot, sun scorching desert. Meanwhile, an annoying vulture is following both men. Perhaps hoping to dine on one of the two men? Or both?
Digs runs into an abandoned beer shack. I guess it's a shack, or maybe a store. It's clearly abandoned and not open for business. Once inside the shack, the cop finally catches up with Digs. A fight ensues and the cop handcuffs himself to Digs. In an act of desperation, Digs shoots and kills the cop. With no bullets or anyway to free himself, he's forces to continue on his journey to Mexico, with the dead cop draped over his shoulders.
Later, Digs gets an idea. He makes an axe-like concoction out of the cop's badge and a stick. If his plan works in his favor, he can finally sever ties with the dead cop. With blurry vision, he brings the axe down hard, chopping half of his hand off in the process. He falls back; dangling over the edge of a cliff. With the weight of the cop proving to be to strenuous, Dig's hand is severed and he falls from the cliff. He lands on his back and is horrified to realize that he's now paralyzed. The vulture, hungry for his prey, circles above him. Digs knows he's in a real tough situation as the vulture lands next to him. At the end we see the vulture pulling the eyeball from the head of Digs. The hungry vulture continues to feast as the scene fades to black.
This episode is one of my favorites. I remember this one always sticking with me. This was the one that freaked me out the most as a kid. The thought of knowing that you're paralyzed and unable to fend for yourself is frightening enough. But having a vulture rip out your eye in the process! That's utter madness. I do feel that poor old Digs did deserve what he had coming to him, but geez, that's a bit much isn't it? Kyle MacLachlan does a great job as the lewd and crude, Earl Raymond Digs. A little over the top with the acting, but it fits well with the show and the character. The fx for the time were really well done and still hold up today. If you want some good, quick fun, then hunt this one down. It's a great episode.
Starring: Kyle MacLachlan and George Deloy
Screenplay and Directed by: Steven E. de Souza
Original Airdate: 6/15/91