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Episode Recap: Zombie Stunt Double


I never would've guessed that the most shocking twist in Town of the Living Dead is that, as the show progresses, the Thr33 Days Dead team is getting better at filmmaking. Out of all the episodes to date, this installment was by far the most ... well, cinematic.

The episode kicks off with the gang hanging out at a carnival. "It's a big deal when the fair comes to town," says Tina, the zombie flick's EP -- and, as Jasper doesn't seem like a kickin' town, it's easy to take her word for it. While they're at the fair, Chase breaks free from the pack to call his mother, Christy, which inspires a few of his zombie cohorts take note of the young cast member's dependency on his mom. "The only way he could be closer to his mother is if he was attached by his umbilical cord," says leading man Bryan.

Moments later, Bryan confesses that he hates the fair because he has an intense fear of clowns. Will his clown-phobia come back to haunt him in this episode? Keep reading, if you dare ...

The following day, Tina and her assistant Laura go to a Jasper City Council meeting to ask for permission to shut down the town's main street. The reason? They need to shoot a scene where the three stars of Thr33 Days Dead (Bryan, Chase and Gary) jump out of a second-story window. Some council members aren't too keen on this idea, especially since Tina and the gang caused a fiasco at a cemetery in the last episode, but eventually (and not surprisingly), Tina convinces them. "She could sell a snow-cone to an Eskimo," Laura says of her boss. One of the council members notes with a refreshing sense of good humor, "I've never made a motion to throw someone out of a window."

Across town, John, the movie's director, is making his three male leads jump off the roof of a house to practice for their big action scene in downtown Jasper. Gary and Bryan make the leap without a problem, but Chase's fear of heights prevents him from joining in. Chase is so scared that he develops "fear gas," or, as John calls them, "scaredy farts."

In an unrelated but not uncharming subplot, Bryan tries to set gay FX expert Terry on a date with another dude. Being a gay man in Jasper, Alabama, is not easy, so Bryan thinks he's being helpful by playing matchmaker for his friend. Bryan accompanies Terry on a date with Brandon, a major hunk, to a mini-golf course. Bryan aggressively tries to make the two men fall in love but he ends up connecting with Brandon more than Terry, even though Bryan is a straight married man. In the end, it's revealed that Brandon isn't gay, either. Seems like a classic Jasper love triangle.

In a random but very funny scene, Tina's daughter Catie celebrates her 20th birthday with a party that's more designed for a toddler with a bouncy castle, candy, cake and babies everywhere. There's also a clown who terrifies Bryan, who is a bit perplexed by the childlike nature of the party: "When I turned 20, I remember waking up with my friend's nuts on my forehead."

Finally, the day of the big window-jumping stunt arrives. The main street in Jasper has been shut down and a crowd has gathered to watch the action. Unfortunately, Chase is still refusing to make the jump. As a result, John and Tina are forced to hire a stunt double, who happens to be an African American man (keep in mind that Chase is a chubby white man). Miraculously, they pull off the shot as Bryan, Gary and the stunt double all leap from the second story window -- and when it's played back at the end of the episode, it actually looks frightening, just like a good zombie movie. At one point, Gary says, in reference to the visually incongruous stunt double, "We say a lot that we can fix it in post, but this particular element, I don’t know." Well, whoever's working in post on Thr33 Days Dead should get a raise, because the scene looks badass.