Tales from the Crypt (1989–1996)
10 user 2 critic

Abra Cadaver 

A former potential surgeon sets out to wreak revenge on the brother whose cruel practical joke prevented him from realizing his dream.


Stephen Hopkins


Jim Birge (screenplay), Steven Dodd (creator)

Watch Now

From $1.99 on Prime Video





Episode cast overview:
Beau Bridges ... Dr. Martin Fairbanks
Tony Goldwyn ... Dr. Carl Fairbanks
Tom Wright ... Mitch
John Kassir ... Crypt Keeper (voice)
Lucinda Weist ... Kelly
Peter Schuck Peter Schuck ... Bernie
Hugh B. Holub ... Al (as Hugh Holub)
Tina Bockrath Tina Bockrath ... Paula / Cadaver


Martin Fairbanks would have been a successful surgeon if not for a cruel prank his brother Carl played on him years ago. Now merely a research assistant he resents his sibling who has become a successful surgeon. Martin however wants revenge as well as the opportunity to prove the success of his research involving the human brain. Carl learns this all too well as his twisted brother combines both these personal goals with chilling results. Written by Robert McElwaine

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Not Rated | See all certifications »






Release Date:

19 June 1991 (USA) See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:



Color | Black and White (opening sequence)

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


A year earlier, Tony Goldwyn played another character named Carl in Ghost (1990). See more »


Dr Martin Fairbanks (Beau Bridges) informs his brother (also a doctor), that he "can now quantitively show . . ." that his wacky theories are correct. He no doubt meant to say, "quantitatively". Later, as he's about to remove his brother's brain, he picks up what he calls an "epidural saw". Epidural is a type of anaesthesia, not surgery. At the end of the episode, other doctors refer to the same instrument as an "epidermal saw" - still not the name of a real medical instrument, but at least closer, as "epidermal" refers to the skin. See more »


References Lost in Space (1965) See more »


Tales from the Crypt Theme
Composed by Danny Elfman
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

So I guess you'll just be...hanging out
7 November 2007 | by mattressman_pdlSee all my reviews

Beau Bridges and Tony Goldwyn guest star as bickering med school brothers in Abra Cadaver, a season three highlight. Years ago, Carl (Goldwyn)stages a practical joke which gives Martin (Bridges) a coronary, leaving one of his valuable surgeon's hands paralyzed. Now, Martin is about to get his revenge as Carl is helpless against Martin's pent up vengeance.

Skillfully acted by Bridges, channeling a demented quality I haven't seen from him, and by Goldwyn, who's second act must have been a real pain. Tom Wright even shows up as a Rastafarian. Stephen Hopkins (Predator 2, Nightmare on Elm Street 5) does a fine job directing this installment.

The End is brutal and ironic, appropriately a Crypt ending.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 10 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page

Stream Trending Movies With Prime Video

Enjoy a night in with these popular movies available to stream now with Prime Video.

Start your free trial

Recently Viewed