Dead of Summer: The Devil Inside – Switch (Review)


Dead of Summer just pulled a switch. “The Devil Inside”  does a role swap at the last minute between Amy and Holyoke. On top of that little shocker,  another counselor dies, Jessie’s DUI backstory is revealed and Garrett has turned into a trigger-happy (suspended) cop.


An unscheduled eclipse causes Jessie to have a vision. Cricket returns and tells her to throw Holyoke’s bones into the lake. If she does not, everyone will die.  Jessie must then convince the other’s in the group to let her carry out the task.

Cricket visits Jessie again and tells her the demon’s name. Despite being told not to, Jessie turns and sees the enormous winged creature rise from the lake. The name of the entity is Malphas and it is this creature  that the counselors, and Deb, must defeat.  Amy  is apparently possessed by the thing and it controls her. The gang must outwit the girl to keep everyone from dying.

Joel gets on board when he tries to burn down the cabin. He learns from Holyoke himself that Amy has been possessed by the demon.   Jessie finally throws the bones into the lake and everything changes. It suddenly switches from day to night.

Another vision reveals that Holyoke was not evil personified. He was the scapegoat of a Satanist sect. His followers were all murdered by the worshippers and he was turned in by the killers.  Only Joel and Jessie see this flashback to what really happened to Holyoke’s followers.

Deb tells the counselors that the camp is closing down after the events of last week. The kids have to pack up and leave before the reporters and cops invade Camp Stillwater.

Jessie’s Backstory:

Jessie’s mother turns out to be a self-centered, passive-aggressive woman who does her best to keep her daughter from becoming a success. From sabotaging her interview for college to forcing Jessie to take the rap for her drunken accident; “Mom” is a real piece of work.

Sharon Leal as Jessie’s mother.

The result is that Jessie has some trust issues but does ultimately trust herself to do what is  right.


Turns out that this guy was not a villain after all. He has been trying to alert the kids              to the coming of Malphas.  He was set up by the Satanists and has been wrongly accused of mass murder for centuries.  Holyoke now has Jessie and, briefly, Joel on his side.

Later the kids bring Amy to his cabin and he prepares to defeat Malphas. It seems that he does not want to kill the girl but the demon hiding inside her.  He orders Joel and Jessie to help him save the girl.


Alex takes Amy out to Eagle Creek, to stargaze, but the two start making out. Amy instigates the switch to sex and palms Alex’s knife.  Deb and the counselors break up the make out session. Amy holds the knife to Alex’s throat.

Amy before she goes knife happy…

Joel talks her down and in response she lets Alex go but kills Joel by stabbing him in the throat. Garrett pumps four rounds into the possessed girl. Amy hits the ground and then gets right back up. Holyoke appears and grabs Amy. “You know where to find me,” he says. He drags her to his cabin.


The still alive Amy is tied in a chair in Holyoke’s cabin.  Garrett and Jessie arrive and when they enter, the door slams shut after them. Amy begins screaming and it becomes deeper, more guttural as the camera zooms into her mouth.


This was one of the better episodes.  It actually made me jump a couple of times. (The scene in the mortuary with all those drawers and Damon rising was impressively creepy.)

The switch, where Holyoke suddenly becomes a “good guy” was well done. Although there are some disturbing elements to his agenda. He says he wants to save Amy, but earlier he wanted her dead. Could his version of “save” equal death?

Jessie’s backstory explained a lot about her character.  It gives a believability and a truth that was missing before.

Amy Mitchell finally got to do a bit more than just show up occasionally and look worried. This lady has got some massive chops; let her use them.

Tony Todd as hero…Lovely bit of  casting against type and Todd is brilliant enough that he pulls this off effortlessly.

Garrett may never become sheriff if he does not curb that inclination to empty his pistol into the bad guys.

On the downside, the creature that rises from the lake was a bit too CG. In the first draft I even referred to the thing as:  “the computer generated demon…”

Overall Dead of Summer “The Devil Inside” moved things up a notch or two.  We got another death (of a likable character) and Amy turned out to be hiding something really bad…

The series airs Tuesdays on Freeform.  Tune in and watch  this slow moving horror show pick up speed.


Author: Mike's Film Talk

Former Actor, Former Writer, Former Journalist, USAF Veteran, Former Member Nevada Film Critics Society

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