Tales from the Far Side (TV Short 1994) - Plot Summary Poster

(1994 TV Short)


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  • A series of Gary Larsen's "Far Side" gags are turned into short animated gags, such as a Frankenstein cow; an insect airline's in-flight movie; deer, hunters, and UFOs; wolf home-movies; egg horror flicks; and cowboys & aliens.


The synopsis below may give away important plot points.


  • A short animated film that consists of several tangentially connected, darkly humorous mini-vignettes all taking place during one gloomy night.

    In a parody of Bride of Frankenstein (1935), a farmer and his deformed pet dog (as stand ins fir Dr. Victor Frankenstein and his assistant Igor) repeat the experiment from the movie in their barn using a cow instead of a woman. Just like in the movie, the experiment is a success, prompting an angry mob of sheep and other farm animals arrives to torch the barn.

    Up in the sky, an airliner that has only man-sized insects as passengers suffers a malfunction and starts going down. Appropriately, the in-flight film they were watching is The Fly (1958).

    Back on the ground, two slobbish hunters are driving through the forest looking for deer to hunt. They get one, but then a UFO captures them as trophies.

    An episode of The Bacon Bunch (parody of the "The Brady Bunch" (1969) TV sitcom which even copies the grid with portraits of the individual members of the Brady family from the show's intro) is shown. The episode is titled "A Bad Day for Marsha" and consists of one single scene in which a python swallows a whole live pig, presumably Marsha, as the typical sitcom audience laughs. It's then revealed that the audience actually consists entirely of more snakes. The next episode of the Bacon Bunch is then announced for next week and it's titled "Bad Day for Greg". The grid with the Bacon Bunch portraits is then shown once again and the pig from the upper left corner, presumably the now devoured Marsha, is missing. The other pigs seem to be quite oblivious to this fact, however. Two snakes in the jungle are shown watching the show on their TV while relaxing in their beach chairs.

    Nearby in the jungle, a cannibal tells a story to his tribe's children using what seems to be one of Khoisan languages which use clicking sounds to express parts of speech. The story is about the time when his headhunter group went hunting for Man on the river. They find an overturned boat that was taking some tourists sightseeing, but it's implied that the crocodiles and snakes got to the tourists first. They move on and notice an explorer with an unusually large head running in panic alongside the river bank. The headhunters attack the man but it turns out that either he's a giant or they are of dwarfish size. Only the storyteller survives the encounter but the kids don't believe him and leave. Meanwhile, the explorer, who speaks in what sounds like German, tells his three kids the same story but they also don't believe him, so he shows them the skeleton of a particularly aggressive headhunter who jumped on his head only to somehow become stuck to it and his bare bones skeleton is still stuck to the man's head even now.

    A sad romantic song plays as depressed wolf watches home movies of his playful wife. One of the clips shows the she-wolf playing defiantly with a wolf trap, trapping her tail in it and sitting there helplessly until a hunter approaches.

    On a a cliff above the city perfectly fit for a lovers' lane, a couple of literal eggheads (two human-sized anthropomorphic eggs) make out in their car ignoring the news report on the car radio that a serial killer is prowling in the area. The killer - a homemaker with an egg beater, appears and attacks the couple in their car. In the morning, the female egg wakes up only to find the remains of her boyfriend splattered everywhere.

    A group of Egyptian traders waves to the audience.

    A boy terrified of the monster in his closet tries to sleep. The monster comes out of the closet and attacks the boy who explodes like a balloon filled with feathers. As it turns out, it was all just a prank on the monster by his fellow monsters and the boy was just a fake novelty item placed in the bed to fool the monster.

    An anthropomorphic carrot tells the other carrots how another carrot was pulled out of its home and eaten alive by a giant (some man, who's giant in size compared to them).

    Female narrator explains how in the old west carnivorous aliens disguised themselves as humans to attack unsuspecting cattle. The only way to discover them was their inability to resist clapping their hands during a campfire folk singalong. When one of them is reveled this way, the other cowboys around the campfire shoot him dead, but he still tries to clap one final time.

    Another narrator with a southern drawl, in what seems to be a parody of a travelogue commercial filled with cowboy and zombie puns, presents the positive sides of a ranch for zombie tourists. Cannibalism, rattlesnake biting, rodeo, a footrace with body parts, a swimming hole, a hayride and a campfire marshmallow singalong are just some of the commodities this wild west zombie resort offers.

    On a dark and stormy night, a scared man driving through the woods runs out of gas near the wreck of a truck with the advertisement "Monsters" written on it. Since the truck clearly went off the road and crashed just before the man arrived, the man becomes terrified that the monsters are loose and after him, so he runs into the forest screaming and panicking. Terrified, he accidentally steps on a rake that knocks him unconscious. As the sun finally rises in the morning, it is revealed that the advertisement actually says "Monster and garden rakes." On this comedic twist the short ends.

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