This is one trend that is sure to be dead on arrival

By Joe Dziemianowicz
Updated August 20, 2001 at 04:00 AM EDT
Jacob Vargas, Michael C. Hall, ...
Credit: Six Feet Under: Larry Watson

Funerals have gone from stone cold to red hot thanks to HBO’s ”Six Feet Under.” ”It’s the big buzz in [our] industry,” says Jacquelyn Taylor, president of the San Francisco College of Mortuary Science. Ditto at the fragrance counter, where Demeter’s Funeral Home is a fast-selling, parlor-inspired perfume. And it’s not alone on the grave-y train:

THE UNDERTAKER Months ago, insiders figured the much-injured WWF star’s career was D.O.A. But he’s b-a-c-k. And he’s sent his Old West-style coat to the boneyard, opting instead for jeans, biker boots, and a Harley. It’s a killer makeover; meet Dead Man Riding.

”SEX AND THE CITY” When Miranda’s mom dies, Carrie and Co. travel to Philadelphia in the interest of motherly love. Funereal girl Samantha gets a chance to reveal something other than her to-die-for body — namely, that her emotions and tear ducts operate.

”THE BURIAL” In this in-the-works Warner Bros. flick, a Mississippi funeral home owner refuses to roll over and play dead when a giant industry conglomerate cheats him. He sues instead. ”Quills” writer Doug Wright adapted an award-nominated story by ”A Civil Action” author Jonathan Harr.

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