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Film / Butcher, Baker, Nightmare Maker

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A Haunting Rhyme for Bedtime.

Butcher, Baker, Nightmare Maker is a 1982 American Slasher Movie.

Billy Lynch is a young man raised by his aunt. He's about to turn eighteen, and is preparing to go away for school. However, his aunt has developed a possessive obsession with the boy that soon explodes into violence. With bodies piling up, Billy is being blamed for the madness, particularly by a homophobic detective who's undergoing Sanity Slippage himself.


This film contains examples of:

  • All Gays Are Pedophiles: Det. Carlson invokes this after Coach Landers comes to his office to tell him about Phil Brody’s past, underscoring Carlson’s homophobia towards Landers.
  • Big Bad: Cheryl Roberts drives the plot by doing anything to keep Billy by her side.
  • Bury Your Gays: Phil Brody’s death starts off the plot, though he isn’t revealed to be gay until after his death. Subverted with Coach Landers, who survives the film.
  • Deceased Parents Are the Best: Billy lives with his aunt because his parents died in a car crash. The plot would never have happened without this event. Except that it's a lie, because Cheryl is his mother, and she keeps his father's corpse in a Stalker Shrine.
  • Distant Prologue: The first scene takes place in 1967, detailing the death of Billy’s parents and how Billy came into the custody of Cheryl. The rest of the film takes place in 1981.
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  • Either/Or Title: The film was re-released as Final Warning.
  • Even Evil Has Loved Ones: The only person Knight Templar Rabid Cop Det. Carlson is kind to is his German Shepherd Mackey.
  • Every Car Is a Pinto: The car belonging to Billy’s parents explodes after driving off a ravine into a river.
  • False Rape Accusation: Cheryl covers up her first murder by claiming the victim tried to rape her.
  • Fan Disservice: Cheryl is very attractive, and bears her breasts in one scene, but it's when she's stabbing a guy to death.
  • Gory Deadly Overkill Title of Fatal Death
  • Hate Sink:
  • Heteronormative Crusader: Det. Carlson is extremely homophobic, to the point of assuming a murder case is a gay lover's spat and forcing a high school football coach to quit under threat of arrest.
  • Horror Doesn't Settle for Simple Tuesday: Birthday.
  • Impaled with Extreme Prejudice: Cheryl.
  • Knight Templar: Det. Carlson.
  • Love Makes You Crazy: Cheryl, in her twisted way.
  • Luke, I Am Your Father: Played with. We knew Cheryl and Billy were related the whole time, but it's only revealed that she's his biological mother as opposed to his aunt in the climax.
  • Mistaken for Gay: After it comes out that Billy's coach, whom he was good friends with, was gay, multiple characters assume Billy is his lover.
  • Mr. Fanservice: Billy appears shirtless and naked several times throughout the film.
  • Murder the Hypotenuse: Cheryl attempts this on Julie, but the latter survives.
  • No Bisexuals: It’s possible that Phil Brody was bisexual, since he was married to a woman before his romance with Landers. Of course, this doesn’t matter to Det. Carlson (and the police department) since he’s wildly homophobic.
  • Nosy Neighbor: Margie. She gets killed after overhearing that Cheryl admitting to being Billy’s mother and being involved in the murders of her ex-lover and (implicitly) her sister and brother-in-law.
  • Parents Walk In at the Worst Time: Cheryl walks in on Billy and Julie doing the deed. This causes Cheryl to resent Julie even more, and later results in her attempted murder of the young girl.
  • Police Are Useless: Det. Carlson plays this damn straight for reasons listed in other trope examples on this page. On the flip side, there’s Sgt. Cook who seems to be the only officer on the case of Phil Brody’s murder to try to actively piece together what happened instead of basing his conclusions on solely homophobic premises, discovering interesting tidbits about Cheryl’s life in the process that might imply her guilt in the murder. Both die at the end.
  • Politically Incorrect Villain: Both of the film's antagonists are homophobes, with secondary antagonist Det. Carlson being an active Heteronormative Crusader and Big Bad Aunt Cheryl mentioning that she views gay people as being very sick.
  • Rabid Cop: Detective Carlson, the officer sent to investigate Cheryl's murders, brazenly ignores the Fifth Amendment right to remain silent and is extremely homophobic. At the end of the film, he's driven to murder. Also counts as Police Are Useless.
  • Reasonable Authority Figure: Coach Landers. He’s shown to be a great coach that Billy looks up to, and the one person that Billy calls after he murders Cheryl in self-defense. Unfortunately, he’s unfairly targeted by Det. Carlson because of his homosexuality and relationship with Phil Brody, resulting in his resignation from the high school.
  • Tampering with Food and Drink: Cheryl poisons Billy's milk the day before basketball tryouts so he loses the scholarship and can be with her forever.
  • Vehicular Sabotage: Cheryl tampered with the breaks of her sister and brother-in-law’s car, resulting in their deaths.
  • Villainous Incest: Cheryl declares that she's her son Billy's girlfriend after seemingly killing his real girlfriend.
  • "Where Are They Now?" Epilogue: It is mentioned that Billy was put on trial for his killing of Det. Carlson, though was acquitted on grounds of temporary insanity. He then goes to the University of Denver with his girlfriend Julie.


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