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Review: Deathrow Gameshow (Vinegar Syndrome)

Deathrow Gameshow
2.5 stars
Starring: John McCafferty, Robyn Blythe, Darwyn Carson, Beano, Debra Lamb

Directed: Mark Pirro

Release Date: October 25, 2016

Run Time: 81 Minutes

Format: Blu-Ray    .Color: Color

Audio: English   .Subtitles:

Distributor: Vinegar Syndrome


Chuck Toedan hosts the most controversial show on TV: Live or Die, where deathrow inmates compete against each other for a chance to beat the executioner. However, when he accidentally kills a mob boss of the most feared mafia in the city, a hit man tries to put an end to him and his show once and for all. As a battle of wits and survival ensues, Chuck is forced to engage in the very tactics he uses on his contestants, or die trying.

From acclaimed independent filmmaker Mark Pirro, DEATHROW GAMESHOW is a playful assault against good taste, featuring outrageous kills and non-stop screwball comedy. Vinegar Syndrome is proud to present this under seen piece of late 80’s camp newly restored in 2K and on Blu-ray for the first time.




Audio Language: English

The Sound Quality is good, clear dialogue and no distortion. Low end is not that noticeable

Rating: 4 stars


Picture Quality

Disc Format: Blu-Ray

The Picture Quality is pretty good, sharp details and popping colors but the color can seem off at times for skin tones and film grain will be more noticeable during a scene or two.

Rating: 4 stars

Note: Equipment used to watch the film can be found below

Theatrical release Date: December 4, 1987 (USA)
Disc release Date: October 25, 2016 (USA)


  • 1. Scanned, restored & preserved in 2k from 35mm original camera negative
    2. Commentary track with director Mark Pirro, John McCafferty (actor) & Robyn Blythe (actress)
    3. “Revisiting Deathrow Gameshow” – 32 minute making-of documentary
    4. 2015 director’s cut of DEATHROW GAMESHOW
    5. Multiple director introductions
    6. “Buns” 1978 (short film directed by Mark Pirro)
    7. “The Spy Who Did it Better” 1979 (short film directed by Mark Pirro)
    8. Original theatrical trailer
    9. TV spot
    10. Image gallery
    11. Director bio
    12. Reversible cover artwork
    13. English SDH Subtitles


My Thoughts

Deathrow Gameshow is a Wacky Horror Comedy that doesn’t hide the fact that it is loopy. The film follows a game show host who hosts a crazy show about life or death. Convicted criminals have a chance to win or face death. Are lead is also very hated by the public who find his job immoral and on top of it he is being chased down my a few mob members for killing off the crime family.

The story is small and very over the top. Now of course the film knows this so its not by accident which may help. We have a few nudity moments and a few death scenes that are also over the top and a Secretary who is always masturbating.

Overall the film was a decent watch and may depend on your mood. If you are looking for slapstick comedy that’s dark and childish then you may find this film up your ally. The film has a cult following and gets reviews in the medium range. I’m in that Line.

I Give this film a 2.5 out of 5 and on a better day perhaps a 3. The film is hated or loved so give the trailer a view and read the plot. The film its self doesn’t have that super low-budget look which may help the viewer to enjoy a bit more.

Rating – 5 Star System




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This Film was Played on the listed Equipment below

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About Masked Avenger

CEO/Webmaster of The Name Is James and I love Film ranging from Silent 20's to highly CGI Blockbusters of today. Westerns, Horror, world film, basically anything that peaks my interest I own it But Asian Films are what I Prize the most and Half of My collection Consists of Asian Films. Thanks to the Film 5 Deadly Venoms

I Hail From The US, Maryland Is where The Ninja Studies and views the Scrolls of Film That Shine on his 46" Screen. I own a sword, I can do a thousand upside down situps, and I randomly disappear in smoke when I'm not writing movie news and or reviews.

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