In the middle of the vast, empty Nevada desert stands the once proud mining town of Desperation -- A harmless, non-descript little community that one may briefly notice on a drive to some distant vacation destination. But something evil has taken over Desperation -- its' name is Tak -- and its mission is to eliminate anyone who gets close to stumbling upon its secret. Posing as Desperation town cop Collie Entragian (Perlman), Tak is able to catch his prey while surveying the nearly empty highway. Caught in his deceptive web are famous Author Johnny Marinville (Skerritt), whose misdeeds from the past may come back to haunt him; Ralph (Frewer) & Ellie Carver (Sylva Kelegian) and their son, David (Shane Haboucha) -- whose faith may hold the key to bringing down Tak; and Mary Jackson (Gish) who, with her husband, Peter (Thomas), will discover a courage they never knew they had while battling the beast. Meanwhile, Johnny's aide, Steve Ames (Weber), and his traveling companion, Cynthia (Kelly Overton), find out for themselves the horror that has taken place in Desperation when they go in search of the famous author; and the town's veterinarian, Tom Billingsley, knows first-hand the secret of the town.