Friday, October 13, 2006

ramblings for friday the 13th

There are ten* Friday the 13th films, and I won’t try to give you the impression that I’ve seen them all or even a significant number of them. Personally, I prefer suspense to blood and gore, and these slasher films at some point shifted focus from trying to scare the audience to seeing how much carnage the audience could stomach. Besides, the whole masked killer thing really impedes the believability here.

Look, I don’t know if you’ve ever chased youngsters around a summer camp with an axe, chainsaw**, or garden weasel to punish them for their recreational drug use and pre-marital sex, but the wearing of a mask really dulls one’s senses in these situations.

And don’t even get me started on ergonomic disadvantages of the clown suit.

You know, Freddy Krueger had it right with the fedora, the comfortable sweater, and the killing implements conveniently affixed to a leather glove. It’s convenient and still leaves one with the benefit of peripheral vision. However, it’s still about the carnage in the Nightmare films.

The Scream films were a little better in that they had the element of satirizing the genre, but are their even eyeholes in that guy’s mask? Am I to also believe that one would not get entangled in a cloak?

I don’t know if you’ve ever chased youngsters around in a full cloak, but…nevermind, I’ll keep that one to myself.

It is interesting to note the evolution of the slasher mask here. After watching the original Friday the 13th movie any kid could walk into a sporting goods store, purchase a hockey mask and instantly have his Jason costume for Halloween. That’s great for promoting the film, but the hockey mask industry sees all the profits. This isn’t so with the Scream franchise. Their mask may be the least functional of all the masked killers, but you at least have to pay them anytime you want to don one.

Keep that in mind when embarking on your own slasher franchise.

*Do we count the Freddy vs. Jason film? If so, that makes eleven. However, I don’t really think it belongs, as it seems like a feeble attempt to piece together has-beens for the sole purpose of swindling those sad fans that still cling to the genre. It’s sort of like the Velvet Revolver*** of horror films.
**Sure, chainsaws are scary and all, but can you really sneak up on somebody with a friggin’ chainsaw? Are we killing Helen Keller here?
***I’m no gun aficionado, but I can’t quite see the purpose in having an actual velvet revolver****. Sure, it would feel cuddly soft to the marksman who wields it, but wouldn’t firearms forged from sturdier materials be more effective. I mean, you couldn’t even hit somebody over the head and knock them out with a velvet revolver.
****For that matter, what is the purpose of a “def leppard”*****? I feel sorry enough for leopards as it is, as they are easily the most overlooked of the big cats. Lions are the kings, cheetahs are the fastest and therefore more popular of the spotted big cats, and tigers are more often the cartoon spokespeople and get to eat the occasional “magician” in real life.
*****And what is with the spelling? Am I to believe that this is also a “special needs” leopard on top of the hearing disability******? I’m saddened even more.
******Still, I suppose you can sneak up on it with a chainsaw*******.
*******Yes, one should really stop after three asterisks.


Blogger Serena said...

you know those scream masks were out and available for halloween purchase atleast 2 years before those scream movies came out. one can only assume they bought the rights to them upon making the film. talk about a lazy product designer. afterwards the cost of those damn things shot up from seven bucks to fifteen dollars! the injustice!

also, i find it rather humorous that people tend to forget that freddy was a child molester originally. even i tend to forget that aspect of his horror personality. but when you think of it, which is more creepy? comical dream killer or sadistic murdering child molester? im gonna have to go with the ladder, even though its the prior that we all know and love. <3

9:22 AM  
Blogger newscoma said...

You know every time you blog I get a happy. I think the Jason films only hit 10.
Freddy was a child molester, S.
And yet the American public has made him a hero in a rugby shirt.
I think the Robert Englund made him so likeable we forgot his main intentions.

12:18 AM  
Blogger Rex L. Camino said...

I wasn't aware that the masks came first, serena. I seem to be woefully out of touch on my Halloween commercialism.

Perhaps Englund just did a good job of winning our trust in V, newscoma.

8:19 AM  

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