976-EVIL is a 1988 horror film directed by Robert Englund.Spike (the bad boy) and Hoax (the introverted nerd) are cousins who live with Hoax’s overly religious mother. They stumble across a mysterious premium-line phone number, 976-EVIL, which appears at first to be just a fun novelty hotline that offers creepy fortunes to those who call, but they soon discover that it’s a direct line to hell—literally. Spike loses interest, but Hoax uses the powers the number gives him to exact revenge against everyone who has wronged him, inadvertently allowing his soul to be slowly taken over by Satan. Spike must race to stem the tide of destruction Hoax is perpetrating, hoping like hell that he can save his cousin’s soul.
Tropes associated with 976-EVIL:
- Astral Projection: In 976-EVIL II, the Big Bad uses his One Phone Call and receives this power from the evil phone line to keep running loose.
- The End... Or Is It?: II ends with a shot of a ringing phone, a sinister reminder that the evil phone line still exists.
- Everything's Deader with Zombies: II shows what It's a Wonderful Life with zombies might be.
- From Nobody to Nightmare: Hoax uses the powers granted by the phone line to get back at everyone who’s wronged him.
- Title by Number
- Trapped in TV Land: One character in II dies when she is caught inside television between two channels showing Night of the Living Dead and It's a Wonderful Life, and zombified little girl from the former stabs her.