"Fearnot," the second of Jim Henson's intermittent "The Storyteller" shows for NBC, is a visual treat for those with a taste for the weird and wonderful. (It airs tonight at 8:30 on Channels 4, 36 and 39.)
John Hurt, enjoyably reprising his role as the reclusive Storyteller, narrates an odd little tale of a fearless young man who seeks to feel fear. Written by Anthony Minghella, directed by Steve Barron, "Fearnot" is based on a German folk tale, a slight story made rich through the telling.
Fearnot (Reece Dinsdale) encounters a tinker (Willie Ross) who helpfully attempts to kindle the boy's fright with a visit to some truly awful monsters.
"And off they went, a most fanciful peregrination," Hurt says, spinning out the tale with relish, conjuring up the story's characters in the flames of a blazing fire.