View Full Version : Awesome VHS Art That Didn't Make It To DVD

Ian Jane
02-08-2012, 04:43 PM
I've been sifting through a lot of oddball catalogue titles lately and one thing that's kind of bugged me is when there's awesome VHS art that isn't used and instead the DVD gets hit with some variation or unrelated image. The MGM Limited Edition stuff has been guilty of this fairly often.

Case in point? Mercenary Fighters.

Here's the DVD art. At least it features Reb Brown machine gunning and yelling so it could have been worse:


Here's the VHS art - it's considerably more rad:


Ian Jane
02-08-2012, 04:52 PM
Death Wish II - based on the same art, but why did they take the Brooklyn Bridge out of the background and crop things?

The DVD art is ok:


The VHS art is better:


Ian Jane
02-08-2012, 04:54 PM
Don't get me started on this screw up:





Todd Jordan
02-08-2012, 05:50 PM
I've always wondered the same thing, and kudos to Scorpion for using the VHS art on their stuff. At least I think they do. They look like I remember them anyway.

Robin Bougie
02-09-2012, 01:11 AM
Look at the shitty cover on my GAUNTLET dvd. Eat a dick, Warner Bros.

And then the sweet cover of the GAUNTLET vhs:

No contest. Mind you, the best design ever was Frazetta's theatrical poster, and thankfully they brought that back for the blu:

The frustrating thing is that the dvd and blu came out at the same time! Why not use the same rad art for both??

Robin Bougie
02-09-2012, 01:33 AM
Another one that really pissed me off to have to buy is RUNAWAY TRAIN. Had to get it on dvd, because it is one of my faves, but it was through gritted teeth, knowing the vhs looked so much cooler.

Here we have my dvd with Jon Voight, and his co star, Frances McDormand from Fargo:

This is a foreign release, but my old vhs looked almost identical. WAAAY more exciting as the train smashes through a glass image of the stars, and I love that dynamic font on the title!

Compare the way the two trains look. On the dvd its like " Sigh. Well, I'm not really a RUNaway train. I'm more like a parked train, really". And on the vhs, it's like "FUUUUCK YOU I'M TOTALLY SMASHING THROUGH SHIT!"

Robin Bougie
02-09-2012, 01:51 AM
And look at this horse shit. The new dvd/blu art for an 80s comedy classic:

And what we had back in the day:

What a great "upgrade" that is.

Terry C
02-09-2012, 03:45 AM
Artwork is more often enticing to the consumer, especially with fans of these genre films. You'd figure these dicks would get wise by now...

I'm more inclined to look at a beautifully drawn/painted cover than a group shot of floating heads in store that sells videos.

From Beyond poster(same as the VHS):


One of the worst DVD covers I've ever seen:


Robin Bougie
02-09-2012, 04:24 AM
Another one is BOBBIE JO AND THE OUTLAW with Wonderwoman and her side-kick Preacherboy. The original VHS cover wasn't anything special, but it was simple and to the point. It's also kinda iconic, and girls with guns are cool. Plus: Every graphic designer knows that purple mixes with yellow AWESOMELY. They're like chocolate and peanut butter.


Meanwhile on the finally-released dvd, we've got a far less commanding "girl with gun" pose, and what looks like an out-take picture where Lynda appears to have just sucked on a lemon, and spit the lemon juice into Marjoe's eye.


Todd Jordan
02-09-2012, 10:45 AM
Lynda appears to have just sucked on a lemon, and spit the lemon juice into Marjoe's eye.

Heh heh!! It totally does look like that. Good call. I'm thinking she spit his own semen in his eye.

Ian Jane
02-09-2012, 11:26 AM
Marjoe always has that look on his face, doesn't he?

Hey what about The Burning? I know it had more than one VHS release but I remember the Thorn/EMI one which had good cover art. See?


But then the DVD comes along and this is what they do? Dumb.


Ian Jane
02-09-2012, 11:32 AM
Revenge of the Ninja is another good example. On the VHS cover, which replicates the poster art, fucking Sho is FLYING through the air over the city shooting fire out of his magic ninja fire stick and throwing some ninja stars right at your face.


On the DVD, he's just posing.


The Silly Swede
02-09-2012, 11:38 AM
Ok, seriously.... do american studios have some sort of tax-evasion sceme going with employing visually-challenged people to do their covers?

Ian Jane
02-09-2012, 11:51 AM
It's possible. I know the Optimum UK DVD of Revenge of the Ninja used the good art.


Robin Bougie
02-10-2012, 12:23 AM
I've got the italian poster for Revenge, and it has that same awesome image. Yeah, the dvd cover design isn't THAT bad, but it certainly isn't better than the original, so why fuck with it? One thing that is FAR superior is the title font on the original. The new one is really blaaaah.:dunno:

Alex K.
02-10-2012, 12:53 AM
Noticing a pattern with MGM and their DVD covers...

Robin Bougie
02-10-2012, 02:17 AM
Noticing a pattern with MGM and their DVD covers...

My least favourite of all is their DVD cover for RAPE SQUAD. No one is gonna blind buy that movie, I'll tell you that. Not only did they use the lame "Act of Vengeance" title, but they didn't use the original poster design which was great. Didn't include it in this thread though, because the old vhs cover it used to have was equally uninteresting.

Ian Jane
02-10-2012, 11:03 AM
Good call on Rape Squad. I love that movie more than any sane person should and have shown it a few times at movie night's across the continent.

Thorn/EMI VHS - RAD!


MGM Ltd. Ed. DVD - NOT RAD AT ALL (though the transfer was good)!


Ian Jane
02-13-2012, 02:06 PM
Dawn Of The Mummy. The movie sucks but check out the R1 DVD art - it sucks more than the movie.


Now dig the Thorn EMI VHS release. It's rad, much more rad than the movie. The R2 release from ABUK used this art.


Ian Jane
02-13-2012, 02:10 PM
Hello Mary Lou: Prom Night II R1 DVD cover:


Old VHS art:


Ian Jane
02-13-2012, 02:13 PM
Daughters of Satan VHS - When Satan Meets Selleck The Sparks Really Fly! So TRUE!


DVD - where's the Selleck?


Todd Jordan
02-13-2012, 02:15 PM
He's taking care of business down below. In more ways than one.

Terry C
02-13-2012, 05:49 PM

Ian Jane
02-13-2012, 06:59 PM
10 To Midnight had at least 2 VHS releases. They looked kinda cool:



The DVD did not.


Ryan K
02-14-2012, 12:35 AM
Awesome VHS art:


Lame Birkenstock DVD cover:


Robin Bougie
02-14-2012, 06:31 AM
WTF, Stephen Dorff is NOT Justin Beiber, and he didn't wear birkenstocks in that movie!! It was the 80s! What kid would be caught dead in those back then? Hate when they try to market old movies in new packaging hoping you won't be able to guess it was made decades ago. A perfect example of that I saw recently is this great old documentary from 1979 called DIRT. Think of it as an ENDLESS SUMMER for offroaders.

Here is the cool trailer:


Here is the dvd:

WTF. Nowhere on the disc ANYWHERE is there any indication that this movie is old. Even the date on the back says 2005, when the disc came out. Those vehicles on the cover are clearly very modern. And look at that shitty motion-blur photoshop effect they used. Hate everything about this dvd cover. Never would have blind-bought this shitty looking dvd -- even if it was a $1.00 -- if I hadn't done my research and found out about the movie first.

There never was a vhs, but you just know they would have used the poster design, with one of my fave title fonts of ALL TIME! Look at that chrome! So. COOL.


Jamie Edwards
02-15-2012, 04:37 AM
The comments in this thread have given me a much needed laugh today (thanks!) :emily:

Robin- I like that movie Dirt. I saw it in the theater when I was a little kid and I have that dvd.

Ian- I actually like Dawn Of The Mummy! But Im a Mummysploitation fan so I pretty much like all those late 70s/early 80s Mummy movies (Time Walker, etc).

Ian Jane
02-15-2012, 11:03 AM
This movie is my new obsession. In this case the DVD art might be better, but I like the old VHS look for some reason, dopey as it is.





Alison Jane
02-15-2012, 11:14 AM
Awesome VHS art:


Lame Birkenstock DVD cover:


I remember being really pissed off at that one...

Terry C
02-15-2012, 12:56 PM
Pretty much brother/sister with The Gate.

Monster Squad:


To this:


Terry C
02-15-2012, 01:00 PM
Night of the Creeps:


Dun dun dun...


Jimmy Simard
02-15-2012, 01:04 PM
Awesome VHS art:


Lame Birkenstock DVD cover:

The 2002 Canadian release use the VHS cover (and was sourced from a tape too)

Ian Jane
02-22-2012, 03:13 PM
I don't dislike the Code Red DVD cover for Rituals but I think I prefer the VHS cover...



Ian Jane
02-22-2012, 03:16 PM
The VHS art for the Embassy release of Golgo 13: Kowloon Assignment won't win any awards but I think it's better than both the US and UK DVD releases.




Ian Jane
02-22-2012, 03:18 PM
No contest with this one...



Ian Jane
02-22-2012, 03:19 PM
Again, no contest. Anchor Bay messed this one up.



Ian Jane
02-22-2012, 03:22 PM
And BU screwed this one up:



Ian Jane
02-22-2012, 03:26 PM
VHS good, DVD bad.



Ian Jane
02-22-2012, 03:30 PM
Another AB/BU mess up (dig the way the VHS rips off The Lost Boys):




Ian Jane
02-22-2012, 03:33 PM
Synapse's DVD art is good but the VHS has that rad retro charm going for it.



Robin Bougie
03-01-2012, 01:31 PM
As long as we're talking about misrepresentational dvd art, I want to point out Al Adamson's Black Heat/Murder Gang/U.S. Vice (1976).

Here is what the movie looked like.


And the dvd cover:


WTF. How do those two even look remotely like they're in a 1970s drive-in movie? It's outright deception. I'd much rather they have gone with artist Grey Morrow's awesome poster art:


Todd Jordan
03-01-2012, 01:58 PM
That last poster is amazing. Such a neglected art form, the movie poster that is.

Ian Jane
03-01-2012, 02:01 PM
Agreed. Poster art these days is generally pretty dull. It's all about star power, getting the cast members' faces up there, not about action or awesomeness or explosions.

Todd Jordan
03-01-2012, 04:45 PM
They could do it if they wanted to. Too lazy I think. All they have to do is a montage like that one and we'd all be happy.

Robin Bougie
03-02-2012, 03:04 AM
I did a thing about Grey Morrow's movie poster art in Cinema Sewer book 2, but sadly I did not have that MURDER GANG poster yet, and didn't know of its existence.

Todd Jordan
03-02-2012, 08:54 AM
You should draw DVD covers to replace the shitty ones and then sell them.

Ian Jane
03-22-2012, 12:45 PM
Again, poster art, not VHS art, but better than the DVD (even if MGM did at least use the one sheet as inspiration).



Todd Jordan
03-22-2012, 04:04 PM
who's the blonde with the boobs?

03-22-2012, 07:04 PM
Billy Dee Williams

Robin Bougie
03-23-2012, 02:34 AM
That was one I never bothered to see for my CANNON article in Cinema Sewer, as the trailer made it look pretty lame:


Jack J
03-23-2012, 08:16 AM
Arr man, some of those dvd covers truly suck! Great thread!

Ian Jane
03-23-2012, 09:16 AM
Jack, you of all people, being a VHS guru and what not, should pitch it!

Jack J
03-23-2012, 09:47 AM
Haha. Alright, I'll be on the lookout for good vs bad covers. :gory:

Derek Steckler
03-27-2012, 12:02 PM

I bought this dvd about 10 years ago. I was excited to get it because it was a Jonathan Demme film produced by Roger Corman and starring Peter Fonda and Lynn Lowry.
Plus it had never been released on VHS or laserdisc! Imagine my surprise to see the film itself was another Fighting Mad directed by Cirio H. Santiago! Peter Fonda was nowhere to be seen.
Did they never watch the film they were selling? This has to be the most misleading dvd cover I own.

Ian Jane
03-27-2012, 12:31 PM
And the cover sucks too!

Todd Jordan
03-27-2012, 12:49 PM
Awful cover. Total shit. I can't count the number of times I rented a VHS porno that had someone on the cover not even in the movie. Once I rented one with two hot blondes on the cover and it was a Spanish language movie without the blondes in it. But it was porn and I was a teenager, so it didn't really matter once I was done.

The Silly Swede
03-27-2012, 03:56 PM
I don't think they ever watch movies before they release them. I remember when I bought a VHS of a Gary Daniels movie and the story on the back of the cover and the one in the film were not even remotely close. It turns out that the story on the cover was the brief synopsis that was given in the press-kit back when the film was in pre-production, which apparently changed during production. And since the VHS company did not bother to watch the film before releasing it, they just went with the synopsis they had since they pre-bought the rights back before the film was even made.

Ian Jane
03-29-2012, 02:07 PM
One of these covers is aweomse. One of these covers is not so awesome.

YOU be the judge.



Todd Jordan
03-29-2012, 03:49 PM
Genesis had cool covers. So did Continental.Many a movie by those companies was rented by a certain horny kid looking for naked women. Not so much the gore, but that became almost a necessity to see the boobies.

Robin Bougie
03-29-2012, 05:35 PM
The irony is that the Cirio Santiago FIGHTING MAD has an amazing poster they could have used.

Ian Jane
04-02-2012, 11:19 AM
The VHS art for Faces of Death II:


The DVD art for Faces of Death II:


Note: One of these is fucking awesome, one of these is not so fucking awesome.

Todd Jordan
04-02-2012, 12:29 PM
Man, I remember that VHS box...staring at me...daring me to rent it, which I was too big of a pussy to do...still am...

Paul Casey
04-02-2012, 01:19 PM
Man, I remember that VHS box...staring at me...daring me to rent it, which I was too big of a pussy to do...still am...

I would always ask my mom if we could rent it. She said, "Not til you're 18." Then, when I was in college, I bought the VHS set on eBay. We were watching them one day, she came out, ripped the tape out of the machine, yelled and then hid it. Now, I heard the door open and close, so I knew which room she hid it in. After a few minutes, I went and got it, and we finished watching it.
Better than my Reggie Bannister story.

Ian Jane
04-02-2012, 01:58 PM
Better than my Reggie Bannister story.

By a slim margin.

Hey look, Combat Shock.





Ian Jane
04-02-2012, 01:58 PM
Evilspeak is another good example.





Robin Bougie
04-02-2012, 04:12 PM
That Evilspeak is *SUCH* a good example, Ian. I kinda like the Faces of death dvd cover though.

Found another awesome example of dvd shititude the other day.

The vhs:

The dvd:

Seriously, 20th Century Fox? A hard-to-see close up blue-on-blue printed photo of Sean's face in the clouds over a cracking globe? That is the image that best sums up ZARDOZ??

Also, thanks for losing the brilliant original logo and replacing it with something totally unexciting and bland.

paul h.
04-24-2012, 11:40 PM
here's this old chestnut:


a little weird:

and the eventual...not as interesting:


Alex K.
04-24-2012, 11:47 PM
By a slim margin.

Hey look, Combat Shock.





I think the DVD cover is way better and doesn't present the flick as a Rambo ripoff. The Evilspeak DVD cover is bad though.

Ian Jane
04-25-2012, 09:43 AM
I think the DVD cover is way better and doesn't present the flick as a Rambo ripoff.

It most definitely represents the movie better but in terms of the artwork itself, I like the VHS.

Ian Jane
05-01-2012, 04:21 PM
A few more...



Ian Jane
05-01-2012, 04:21 PM


Todd Jordan
05-01-2012, 09:03 PM

Man....I totally forgot about that cover. I never did rent it.

Barry M
05-08-2012, 11:25 AM


Ian Jane
05-16-2012, 01:55 PM
Blue Underground made amends with the Blu-ray release but this old Vestron tape art walks all over the AB DVD art...



Ian Jane
05-24-2012, 02:20 PM
Has MGM just stopped trying, or....?



Todd Jordan
05-24-2012, 02:29 PM

paul h.
05-24-2012, 04:35 PM
Good God. That's terrible. Surprised it's not "glittery" letters.

Ian Jane
09-26-2012, 04:15 PM





Ian Jane
11-21-2012, 03:29 PM
I think the VHS wins.



Gary Banks
11-21-2012, 04:48 PM

I just loved the art on the Universal vhs boxes.

Gary Banks
11-21-2012, 04:49 PM

Ian Jane
11-28-2012, 01:30 PM

Ian Jane
11-28-2012, 01:31 PM

Ian Jane
11-28-2012, 01:32 PM

Ian Jane
11-28-2012, 01:33 PM
Credit where credit is due, those VHS scans came from Critcoonline.

Ian Jane
01-02-2013, 06:40 PM


Ian Jane
06-01-2013, 12:33 PM
With no disrespect meant to Ms. Aumont, I prefer this VHS cover to this DVD cover.



Ian Jane
06-01-2013, 12:56 PM


06-01-2013, 02:17 PM
Yeah, I always thought that NEON dvd cover was crummy.

Robin Bougie
06-02-2013, 08:15 AM
Agreed. I own the NEON MANIACS dvd, and almost can't stand to even take it out and watch it. I hate the cover that much.

paul h.
06-02-2013, 01:56 PM
the cover art of my old Troma dvd of Argento's Stendahl Syndrome bothered me so much that I censored each little image of Toxie with black electrical tape.