Strangeland is an American horror film released in 1998. The movie was directed by John Pieplow and written by Dee Snider.

The film focuses on the body modification underground culture's rituals.


A sadist by the name of "Captain Howdy" lures teens through the internet into his painful traps, in forms of body modification rituals. After Captain Howdy kidnaps a detective's daughter, the detective starts pursuing him. Eventually they catch him and send him to a mental hospital. Upon his release, the townspeople do not accept the new, peaceful former Captain Howdy, and lynch him to an apparent death, which causes him to revert to his previous self. Howdy starts to seek revenge and starts everything all over, only worse.



Snider has long been on a quest to produce a sequel to the film, but circumstances have prevented him from bringing it to fruition. In a 2007 interview with , he revealed the unlikelihood of it ever seeing the light of day.

"I’ve run into so many obstacles. I’m at that point now where I’m going, 'Can I even take a hint? Am I capable of taking a hint?' It was green-lit back in…1998? Well, right after the first one came out, anyway. But we started working on the script, we started looking for directors, and then the company that did it – The Shooting Gallery – they were indicted by the federal government for an Enron-like situation. Their CFO was arrested. All properties were seized, and I spent seven years in the courts, just getting my creative properties, because the government just takes everything, and they dissolve everything. And during that time, everybody and their mother was going, 'Oh, man, if you ever get that back, we’d love to do it, we’d love to do it, we’d love to do it!' And, then, it was like all the girls who want to date you when you’re going out with someone else. 'Hey, I’m available!' 'Uh, not a good time. Yeah, we’re not doing that anymore. Torture films are out.' And, then, after that, I had a deal for an extended DVD release of the first 'Strangeland' with Lionsgate, and then the frigging director who fucked it up the first time (John Pieplow) wielded his Director’s Guild right to first re-edit. We wanted to do an extended DVD and call it the Dee-rector’s cut, but I won’t let the guy near it, and it scared off Lionsgate, because they don’t wanna get fucking involved with the Director’s Guild. So I’m right at this point right now where I’m, like, y’know what? (Sighs) Maybe I should just let it go. I’ll put a sign on my website that says, 'Y’got ten million dollars? Give me a call. I’ve got the script ready to go, Robert Englund’s attached, I’m attached. If somebody’s serious and wants to make it, call me. But don’t call me ‘til you’re ready to hand the check over.'"


He released a prequel, Dee Snider's Strangeland: Seven Sins in comic book form through Fangoria Comics but the company shut its doors after only the first issue was printed. The Scream Factory has taken on the various titles and is expected to publish the full run in 2008.

Pop culture references

Strangeland contains a few references to pop culture.

  • After Captain Howdy is almost hung to death, he says "What a rush." This is a reference to the Road Warriors, who's member Hawk used to say the famous line.
  • When Captain Howdy kills Jackson Roth's wife, he dances with her and asks, "You wanna play ball, scarecrow?". This is a reference to The Wizard of Oz.

Night of 1000 Scars

Dee Snider threw a large party, open to the public, at Webster Hall in New York City to promote and celebrate the theatrical release of Strangeland the night before it debuted, with the party ending in time for VIP's to leave and see a midnight screening of the movie. The party was called Night of 1000 scars and still stands out in the body modification community due to the sheer scope of the event.

Webster Hall is a club with four floors, and performances took place on three of these floors simultaneously. This included people having their eyes and mouths sewn shut and a performance by Allen Falkner's suspension group, TSD, in which three people hung from hooks going through the skin across the tops of their backs. They were suspending from rotating beams, allowing them to rotate in a large circle, remaining air-born most of the time, and soaring out over the audience.

The Lizardman was also in attendance and performed his fire act. The bands Bile and Crisis, who are on the soundtrack, also performed. Most attendee's were decked out in their finest fetish wear. The party was organized by Keith Alexander.


External links

The Popular Band Band "System of a Down" wrote a song called "Marmalade" for the Strangland soundtrack.

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