The Ghostbusters have fought many horrifying entities across their horror movies and animated series, including the Cenobites. The demonic beings from the Hellraiser movies once made an appearance in Extreme Ghostbusters, a choice they ultimately regretted.
It happens in the episode ‘Deadliners’, where a writer, J L Kline, who strikes a deal with the Valthek, a group of demons. They give him terrifying material that allows him to become one of the best-selling writers on the planet, he includes them in his stories to give them power. The only problem is, once they become strong enough, they trap him in his own mansion.
This is where the ‘Busters come in. They struggle at first, because of the power the Valthek have from Kline’s own words, but eventually, they realise it’s all about changing the narrative. It’s a clever episode that looks at the strength of make-believe, and besides all that, the Valthek are all clear visual nods to the creatures of Clive Barker’s The Hellbound Heart. The leader, Crainiac, is based on Butterball.
J L Kline is a riff on R L Stine, essentially the Stephen King of children’s horror. He was massive in the ’90s, and Kline is mentioned alongside King in the fantasy series episode.
If you’ve never watched Extreme Ghostbusters before, it’s a TV series that was way ahead of its time. It had a new team for a new generation, with Egon Spangler at the head. Unfortunately, viewership at the time didn’t quite agree, and it only lasted one season. You can find a bunch of the episodes on YouTube. If you didn’t love Ghostbusters: Afterlife, then check this out.
Have a look at the best ghost movies once you’re done.