Scream Series

ScreamIn honor of the new Scream television series being dropped this June by MTV, I thought it prudent to give my thoughts on one of my all-time favorite horror films. Scream was a beautiful deconstruction of the horror genre and its tropes and at every turn it took us by surprise, from that iconic opening murder of Drew Barrymore (then the most talked about celebrity who was actually in the film), to the introduction of the rules one must follow in order to survive a horror film (unless your name is Sidney Prescott of course), to the self-aware teens you didn’t hate to love.

Scream, as hopefully many people now know, was intended to eviscerate the horror genre when it was released as Wes Craven had thought it had played out and now needed to die without much more fanfare. It was thought this way because of the slew of horror movie sequels coming out left and right to capitalize on the icons of the eighties and seventies (If you don’t know who Jason Voorhees, Freddy Krueger, Michael Meyers, and Leatherface are then SHAME ON YOU AND YOUR ENTIRE FAMILY!). Obviously this didn’t happen (Oh hey there I Know What You Did Last Summer, Valentine, Saw, Final Destination, and the like) Yes, practically each and every one of these films (and for some their resultant series) owes their life to Scream whether they (or you) want to admit it. Ironic as it might seem, Scream itself became a series, a franchise really, despite what it was intended on doing. On the flipside, Wes Craven directed each sequel (and while executives may have screwed Scream 3, it was still funny as hell).

Scream started the practice of casting teen idols (whether or not they were teens is irrelevant to say the least), and this series has them by the boat load. Most everyone in these films is someone you should recognize today for one movie or show or something or other. Let’s count down! Rose McGowan (Charmed!), Drew Barrymore (EVERYTHING!), Matthew Lillard (Scooby-Doo), Jada Pinkett-Smith (Gotham now, a model then), Omar Epps (House), Sarah Michelle Geller (Buffy, obviously), Jenny McCarthy (…boobs?), Patrick Dempsey (Grey’s Anatomy!!) and a whole bunch of other people we don’t really care about because they die before the last twenty minutes… Okay almost everyone I listed died before the last twenty minutes but this is a horror film series, did you honestly think most of these people were going to make it out when they were standing next to Sidney Prescott, Dewey Riley, and Gale Weathers? No? Good you’re learning.

Scream started a resurgence in the horror genre, specifically the slasher flick and while some of its successors are less than deserving it is still a fun series to sit back, relax, throw back some popcorn, and enjoy for all its worth. While a lot of its twists are well known today (two killers, Drew Barrymore bites it, Sidney’s not a virgin any more) it still has a place in history and for that it should be lauded.

Besides, Scream 4 was hilariously refreshing I mean, Lucy Hale, Shenae Grimes, Anna Paquin, Kristen Bell, Aimee Teegarden, and Brit Robertson within the first ten minutes (okay you caught me, Kristen Bell lives)?! Not to mention we get Hayden Panettiere and Emma Roberts? Mary McDonnel? How the hell did all of these people sign up for Scream? Because it’s a kick ass film series!!

 

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