Cinemasochistic Theater: The Toxic Avenger


“Out of the dark and into the light
Mercilessly devastating his enemies, turning wrong to right
Toxic Avenger!” – The Dickies

This week i watched 1984′s The Toxic Avenger, I first watched this movie in the 90′s with my fellow Nerd Filter bud, Punkpal and I can say it changed our lives. I didn’t know they could make movies like this, I thought they had rules  and laws to prevent it. This was the most violent and gory movie I had seen so far. The scene where the kid is hit on his bike and then has his head ran over freaked me out. Later on, I let Punkpal give his thoughts on this cult classic.

“Tromaville has a monstrous new hero. The Toxic Avenger is born when mop boy Melvin falls into a vat of toxic waste. Now evildoers will have a lot to lose.” Poor Melvin tricked by a group of douche bags and humiliated to the point of running away, then chased and for some reason choosing to jump out a closed window falls head first into a barrel of toxic waste. Soon after he painfully transforms into The Toxic Avenger.


The fx for this movie are very cheesy but they look so cool. Hell they even have a guy on fire stunt and that is always awesome! Surprisingly the acting isn’t bad which is a shock, and it’s pretty funny that Toxie is dubbed over but understandable since it’s hard to talk with a mask and a prosthetic on. This movie is a great mix of horror, action, comedy and even romance, between Toxie and a cute blonde blind girl named Sara. Shit they beat Mask to the punch on that one! I’m not sure which physically deformed/blind love story i like more, Rocky Dennis & Diana Adams or Toxie & Sara!


The violence is over the top and gross, the fight scene in the taco shack is epic! All I have to say is milk shake death! The hit and run scene even today as I watched it, still feels wrong to me, like I shouldn’t be watching this. Maybe it’s because it’s a kid getting hit and his head popped like a teenagers zit, it just gets to me every time. I’m not saying it isn’t cool, because it really is cool and it’s important to the movie, so glad that it didn’t get cut out or watered down.


Now Punkpals thoughts on The Toxic Avenger.

The Toxic Avenger holds a special place in my heart, for it was the 1st Troma movie I had ever seen. I don’t remember exactly what year it was–sometime in the early or mid 90′s, Josh and I rented The Toxic Avenger. At the video store I had been eying the cover art and it was finally time to see this masterpiece. I believe I had been watching the cartoon The Toxic Crusaders prior, so I thought I knew what I was getting into. Nope! This was like nothing I had seen before. I remember a car running over a kids head and it just burst like a ripe tomato. That’s when I knew I was in for something a little more bizarre than the usual Hollywood affair. It might have desensitized me sure, but in the best way possible. I have watched countless Troma movies since, and the 1st Toxic Avenger is still arguably their best. I really appreciate Lloyd Kaufman and his DIY guerrilla style of film making. I’m not really sure how many sequels they made off the top of my head, but Toxie is still a movie icon in my book. – Punkpal


I’ve seen many Troma movies and like Punkpal said this one is the best, a close 2nd for me is Tromeo & Juliet. The Toxic Avenger has 3 other sequels, The Toxic Avenger Part II, The Toxic Avenger Part III: The Last Temptation of Toxie and Citizen Toxie: The Toxic Avenger IV. None of them can stand up to the first one. I would like to thank Lloyd Kaufman for making this amazing movie, he is a big reason why I turned out to be a huge movie nut. Damn, who knows what type of movies I would be watching if I hadn’t seen this one. (Probably those Madea movies.) If you haven’t seen The Toxic Avenger give it a chance, it’s not everyone’s cup of toxic tea but it is a cult classic. If it wasn’t for these types of movies, cinema would be crazy boring. So support low budget movies my Mario Van Peoples and stay nerdy my friends.

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