[[quoteright:317:http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/147136_3.jpg]]
[[caption-width-right:317:Television can change your mind... Videodrome will change your body!]]

->''"Death to Videodrome! Long live the New Flesh!"''

''Videodrome'' is a horror/sci-fi film directed by Creator/DavidCronenberg.

It is a surreal movie, one of the poster children for BodyHorror. Like all of Cronenberg's movies, it has a strong intellectual undercurrent. The film deals with Marshall [=McLuhan's=] philosophies and examines the relationship between television and its audience. Cronenberg was greatly influenced by [=McLuhan's=] theories.

More specifically, the film follows the CEO of a small cable station who stumbles upon a broadcast signal that is broadcasting extremely violent and horrific things. He investigates. As you might expect from Cronenberg, things get worse...
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!!This film provides examples of:

* TwentyThree:
** The first scene is Max's secretary telling him his schedule for the day, Wednesday the twenty-third. On video tape.
** In a blink and you'll miss it type, when Max first meets Barry Convex in person for the first time at the opticians' store, you can see the number 23 in the background behind Convex in one of the shots.
* AdolfHitlarious: Max has a picture of Hitler in a ballerina skirt with a swastika on it and on stilts in his living room.
* AuthorAppeal: Characters ranting about the power of flesh? Yep, it's a Cronenberg film.
* BedmateReveal: Played for horror. When Max wakes up in his bed late in the film after an extended Videodrome hallucination, he finds someone laying next to him. When he removes the sheets it turns out to be the corpse of an associate of his, tied up and tortured to death. He calls up a friend to come over and look, [[spoiler:but it turns out he was again hallucinating and his bed is empty.]]
* BlackAndGreyMorality: Barry Convex may be a clear bad guy, but Bianca O'Blivion is no saint either. She uses Max just as Barry did, and the only difference is that she shows a ''little'' remorse [[spoiler: but still uses him to kill her enemies and drive Max to suicide.]]
* BodyHorror: That's [[SignatureStyle David Cronenberg]] in the credits people.
* BrainwashedAndCrazy: [[spoiler:Max eventually becomes compelled by the Videodrome tapes to murder his partners at Civic TV in cold blood. When he goes after Bianca O'Blivion, she reprograms him to kill her enemies (the people who programmed Max to become an assassin in the first place) for her.]]
* BrownNote: Videodrome itself. We get to see why, and it's as horrible as it is said to be.
* ChekhovsGun: Max Renn loses his gun in an early hallucination inside the cavernous tumor in his stomach. [[BodyHorror Guess where he gets his gun from before the climax.]]
* CigaretteBurns: Nikki puts out a cigarette on her left breast as part of her masochistic tendencies, despite Max's pleas for her not to.
* CosmicHorrorStory: Maybe. Sort of. It depends on how you view the signals and hallucinations.
* DoubleEntendre: "Civic TV, The one you take to bed with you."
* DeconstructorFleet: For late '70s exploitation movies. Oddly enough, it is now [[WeirdAlEffect much better known]] than films like ''Mondo Cane'' or the first ''Film/FacesOfDeath''.
* ExploitationFilm; Civic TV's stock in trade is exploitation ''TV''.
* FantasticAesop: Not used by the film itself, but by the bad guys, who figure that if they make a torture porn show that kills the viewer, nobody will watch torture porn anymore.
* FunnyBackgroundEvent: Max hitting on Nicki while the talk show host interviews Brian O'Blivion.
* {{Gorn}}: Played with.
* HeadTiltinglyKinky: Nicki gets off on mutilating and piercing herself, as well as watching TorturePorn.
-->'''Nicki:''' What's this? "Videodrome"?
-->'''Max:''' Torture. Murder.
-->'''Nicki:''' Sounds great.
-->'''Max:''' Ain't exactly sex.
-->'''Nicki:''' Says who?
* HemoErotic: When Max learns that Nicki is a masochist, she asks if he wants to try out something. He pierces her ear with a needle, and licks off the blood.
* IJustShotMarvinInTheFace: Done on purpose for extreme horror. At one point James Woods basically has sex with the cancerous vagina growing out of his own belly with a gun.
* InterplayOfSexAndViolence: This film is rife with it. In fact, it could even be seen as the main theme of this film.
* LoveableRogue: Max Renn may be a snarky dealer of smut, but he is charismatic and friendly and never really did anything wrong until Videodrome screws him up.
* MaybeMagicMaybeMundane: Yes, they're visions, but... is that ''really'' Nicki talking to him beyond the grave, or just his own psychosis?
* MegaCorp: The Spectacular Optical corporation is revealed to have stolen Videodrome (a mysterious force that can give people the power to warp reality) from its creator, Dr. Brian O'Blivion, and assassinated him with it. While O'Blivion wanted to use Videodrome to help the human race, Spectacular Optical uses it to further their own evil goals of world domination. According to its CEO Barry Covex, the company makes everything from cheap glasses to missiles.
* MindScrew: The blurring between fiction and reality only increases during TheClimax.
* TheMole: [[spoiler: Harlan]] is revealed to have been a plant sent in by Barry Convex [[spoiler: in order to expose Max to Videodrome]]
* MoralEventHorizon: {{Invoked}} by Masha.
-->'''Masha:''' Videodrome. What you see on that show, it's for real. It's not acting. It's... snuff TV.
-->'''Max:''' I don't believe it.
-->'''Masha:''' So... don't believe.
-->'''Max:''' Why do it for real? It's easier and safer to fake it.
-->'''Masha:''' Because it has something that you don't have, Max. It has a ''philosophy'', and ''that'' is what makes it dangerous.
* MoralGuardians: The purity league headed up by Barry Convex.
* MrViceGuy: While Max is mostly a good person, he is quite a sleazy guy, whose vices are mostly associated with lust.
* NewMediaAreEvil: {{Deconstructed}}. This turns to be [[spoiler:Barry Convex's]] plan with Videodrome all along: to make people fear the evolution of media. Bianca is against it, but her beliefs are just as extreme.
* [[NamesToRunAwayFrom/{{Nouns}} Names To Run Away From: Nouns]]: Brian O'Blivion and his daughter Bianca O'Blivion. While their alignment is very hard to make out due to the unreality of the movie [[spoiler:and Brian is a resonant phantom living in the television world]], they are engaging in a counter war against the brain-destroying, people-corrupting Videodrome syndicate by reprogramming the "video word made flesh" (an outside innocent, sleazy TV executive Max Renn) for their own sinister purposes.
* NoCelebritiesWereHarmed: Brian O'Blivion is a parody of Marshall [=McLuhan=], whose ideas are the central theme of the movie. He only exists in video tapes, parodying [=McLuhan's=] famous proclamation: "I refuse to appear on television, except on television," a line O'Blivion quotes verbatim in his first appearance.
* NonActorVehicle: [[Music/{{Blondie}} Deborah Harry]].
* NothingIsScarier: The orange letters of the title card of the titular TV Show, with nothing but the buzz of your cathode ray-tube to accompany it.
* OrganicTechnology: The television sets start to breathe and pulsate, the video cassettes are eventually made out of living flesh, and Max's hand morphs together with his gun.
* PhallicWeapon: When Max grows a cancerous vagina on his abdomen, he uses his gun to have sex with it.
* PlaceWorseThanDeath: Pittsburgh is treated this way throughout the film. It is where the Videodrome signal comes from, and "See you in Pittsburgh" is later used in lieu of the regular "SeeYouInHell".
* PlayfulHacker: Harlan, who even has signs around bragging about being a video pirate. [[spoiler: It's an act.]]
* PunnyName: Brian O'Blivion? Barry Convex? Is this a comedy? '''No.''' Possibly a ShoutOut to ThomasPynchon. {{Justified}} in the first instance because Brian O'Blivion has explicitly renamed himself.
* TheReasonYouSuckSpeech: A nasty one delivered by [[spoiler: Harlan]].
-->'''[[spoiler: Harlan:]]''' North America's getting soft, patrone. And the rest of the world is getting tough. Very, very tough. We're entering savage new times, and we're going to have to be pure... and direct... and strong... if we're gonna survive them. Now, you and this, uh, cesspool you call a television station... ''(increasingly pissed)'' and, uh, your people who '''''wallow''''' around in it... and, uh, your viewers... who ''watch'' you ''do'' itó you're rotting us away from the inside. We intend to stop that rot.
* ScienceIsBad: The seeming surface moral is that modern information technology is ''eeevill''. But, later it turns out: [[spoiler:[[AvertedTrope not so much]]]].
* ShoutOut:
** To several famous exploitation movies.
** CIVIC-TV is a play on City-TV (a Toronto-area station that played porn movies at the time when ''Videodrome'' was made.[[note]]It still does, only now it's not just a "Toronto-area" Station, but has a City-TV Vancouver, Montreal, etc.[[/note]]).
* ShowWithinAShow: ''Videodrome'', which is ostensibly a SnuffFilm, but later turns out to be a sinister movement.
* SmugSnake: [[spoiler:Barry Convex.]]
* SpiritualSequel: ''[[Film/{{EXistenZ}} eXistenZ]]''. This is made particularly clear because it starts with a scene that looks very like the climax to this movie.
* SnuffFilm: Videodrome is snuff ''television''. Or that's how it appears at first...
* StartsWithASuicide: [[spoiler: {{Inverted}}. The film ends with Max shooting himself to (he believes) be joined with Nicki in Videodrome. Whether or not he's [[ThroughTheEyesOfMadness hallucinating there is an open question, however]].]]
* SurrealHorror: As Max's [[ThroughTheEyesOfMadness psychological descent steepens]], plot points and settings grow more and more absurd.
* TheTapeKnewYouWouldSayThat: TV prophet Brian O'Blivion communicates solely through videotaped messages-even in order to participate in an interview early on in the film.
* TheTelevisionTalksBack: Nicki disappears when going to check out Videodrome, then appears to Max in his TV, and asks for a kiss. He does...and then things start to get really bizarre. Brian O'Blivion also starts to directly converse with Max in this way later on.
-->'''Max:''' Be careful. It bites.
* ThereAreNoTherapists: The only person coming close in the movie gets corrupted the fastest.
* ThroughTheEyesOfMadness: The film is shown from the perspective of the protagonist, Max Renn, who has certainly gone batty at some point. Everything up to the first Brian O'Blivion tape he watches can be assumed to be real as he's still only slightly affected by the signal. But when Bianca tells him that his life could become "100% video hallucination", suddenly it looks more and more likely that the bizarre plot twists ([[spoiler:i.e. an evil conspiracy operating out of an opticians', his best friend being part of this conspiracy, murdering people with flesh/metal hybrid weaponry]]) is all part of a massive psychotic break triggered by the Videodrome signal. Maybe.
* TorturePorn: Subverted in-universe. When Max first sees the pirated Videodrome transmission, he thinks that it's the most realistic torture exploitation he's ever seen, which is exactly what he thinks his channel's viewers will want. Only later does he realize that Videodrome's 'actors' don't ever return, and is a real SnuffFilm operation.
* UnreliableNarrator: See ThroughTheEyesOfMadness, above.
* VaginaDentata: Just about the only trope played straight. Except that it's on a man. In his '''abdomen'''.
* VisualPun: Max's ''handgun'' becomes overtly literal later on. There's also a literal hand grenade at one point.
* {{Zeerust}}: [[SocietyMarchesOn To a modern audience,]] the idea that television is the primary medium by which media influences the human mind seems quite antiquated, what with the rise of the Internet and social media. The potential remake of ''Videodrome'' addresses this issue by using the Internet and nano-technology as the means by which society is controlled. Television ''itself'' has also evolved beyond signal broadcasts since the rise of cable. Those adorable video cassettes and V.C.R.s really sweeten the deal.
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