Scream 6: Ghostface Takes Manhattan. SMGDH.

The Gonzo Journals

January 21st, 2023

I remember it all too well. The year was 1989, I was on a high school movie date with a girl who would eventually teach me the horrors of infidelity, and Jason Vorhees hitched a ride to New York City on a yacht full of spoiled poons. Absolutely. Out of the woods and into the big city. As cool as it sounds, this is where franchises go to die. Forget how awesome Kane Hodder is as Jason. It was a big enough bomb for Paramount to sell the property to New Line Cinema who, at the time, would buy just about anything in order to squeeze it dry.

Yesterday, they released the trailer to Scream 6. Yes, part six. Where do you go in a franchise when you have no more original ideas? You guessed it. Manhattan. To be fair, the Scream series has borrowed from every slasher franchise and that’s part of its whole schtick. The original was a breath of fresh air in a tired, mid-nineties horror market. Part six? I’m scared, and for all the wrong reasons.

Behold. The Trailer.

Scream hit theaters in 1996 and was directed by the great Wes Craven! After – we hoped – giving up on the Nightmare On Elm Street franchise, we had a new offering to torture the nerves of the straits. It was meta, it was self-aware, and it was everything we’d ever wanted in a horror movie. The killer had no supernatural powers, and the victims would kick his ass from time to time before he got lucky and managed to kill them. Since then, it’s spawned four sequels. I’d never watched any of them until recently. Yes, I didn’t move on from the original Scream until the year 2022. Why?

I hate ruining perfection!

The original Scream held a special place in my heart which remains to this very day. I’d grown weary and leery of slasher films by the time it arrived on the scene and didn’t even bother giving it a chance until it came out on home video. I even borrowed a copy from someone, so I didn’t have to spend my own money. I watched it repeatedly for days looking for a flaw. I found none. It was brutal, it was hilarious, and Ghostface was a powerful addition to the slasher icon hierarchy along with Jason, Freddy, Chucky, Leatherface, and Pinhead. Then, the inevitable sequels came.

The second film in the series preyed on sequels. The third? Trilogies. The fourth? Reboots. The most recent fifth film? Legacy sequels. I recently watched the second film for complete shits and giggles, and it was quite enjoyable, but convoluted. I’m nervous to watch the remaining films.

The new one? It checks all the boxes of a modern-day Netflix caliber horror film, only it’s being released in theaters. Small town young people in a big city with a select few of the original cast returning to guide them for a moment…and then die. Let’s face it. Courtney Cox is no spring chicken and Neve Campbell refused the project altogether. Instead, we have a newer face returning from the fifth entry as well as streaming’s flavor of the year headlining. Fucking Jenna Ortega.

Yes, I know she’s incredibly attractive and she’ll sell tickets, but those tickets are sold to modern movie going assholes who are only interested because the subject matter has become a goddamn Tik Tok sensation. If I had to see that fucking Wednesday dance one more fucking time, I was going to gnaw through my wrists with my own teeth. It’s not even impressive! The ninety second dance has twenty-seven different scene cuts! Some careful editing made her a sensation. Those of us in the biz? Not so much.

I have a gut feeling we’ll just get a rehash of her character from Wednesday as she ducks and dodges the once great killer through the streets of Manhattan. The YouTube whore core will flock to the theaters in droves to see her give us two hours of straight faced meh. I hope to the powers that be she doesn’t break out into a fucking dance…but you know it’s coming, folks. You know it is. The Scream franchise relies highly on its meta principles so much that it’s a given they’ll reference it at some point. This is why I thrive on indie horror films and A24 offerings. The mainstream is dead but still wiggling. Someone please put it out of its misery!

Now I must watch Scream 3 – 5 to get ready to boo this fucking flick in a theater full of people who won’t put down their phones long enough to enjoy the theatrical experience. Sometimes I hate myself.

Peace…

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