by Adam M. Wilcox
So I have had a long running gripe about this series that I have been very vocal about since I joined social media. In 2018, you simply have to love everything, or simply fuck off and die. If your going to have the balls to stick to your guns…you have to be ready to fight the backlash. Jason Voorhees is a cinematic icon loved by many, but the series from which he was born is scattered with peaks, and valleys, boobs, sweat, and blood. The first thing people do when you state you don’t like something, is instantly blast you with: “did you see this?, well what about that?” I go through this all of the time with things like Game of Thrones, or anime. As if the first 4 things I watched were not good, somehow the 4th season of a show, or the 5th movie in a series will magically tickle my fancy, and make me change my opinion. This time I am ready for all the hate!
I took a second interest in this series, because I enjoy watching people play the video game which is lovingly based on this franchise. Often the discussions, and references occur, and I feel like I am missing out on something special. Why is it, that I don’t get why this series is so beloved? For this exact reason, I decided to marathon through the Friday The 13th movies 1-8. I already have loved the television series for a very long time. Unfortunately, that series has absolutely NOTHING to do with the movies of the same name. It was supposed to be called “The 13th Hour”, and as a marketing stunt pulled by Frank Mancuso Jr, the series name was changed deliberately to pull in audiences, only to confuse them when Jason never showed up. It was a great show. Anyways…I forced myself to watch all of these films. I have seen Jason X, and Freddy Vs Jason. I have not seen Jason Goes To Hell yet…sorry. So my initial impressions are that most of it was dull, especially, the first which is basically a mediocre slasher/thriller with a supernatural twist. A lot of the same beats were repeated. HOWEVER, at one point for me the series gets interesting, and one of them I absolutely loved.
I get that this series is mainly all about the kills. The first 4 episodes kind of repeat the same beats over and over. Different ways to get kids partying at the lake, and not much else. I still think the first is extremely overrated, that hasn’t changed. Some of these like the third one, was literally putting me to sleep. Now the series actually started getting interesting for me at about part V, which felt more like a proper sequel, because it was the next evolution of characters set up in part 4. However, the one that won my heart over was Friday The 13th Part VI: Jason Lives. This one is the best in the entire series. It embraces the camp with awesome characters, and humor…goes off the deep end on special effects. Tommy Jarvis is a badass…so now I get why it’s a huge deal when you get to come back as him. This fucker has killed Jason more than anyone! And an Alice Cooper soundtrack? Wow!!! This movie has balls!
Part VII was a step backwards to me, as Jason basically fights Carrie… Part VIII had a decent concept…but didn’t do as much with it, as I would of hoped. I don’t know why they didn’t make more like part VI…they really had something there. I feel like it was working best when the film was more self aware, and just embraced the tongue in cheek humor.
Oh well, now I will get blasted, but I saw it through. One interesting film, and one amazing film, in a beloved series of cookie cutter slasher porn. It’s not a total waste, but this is one series where I can say…the best one, was one of the later ones in the series. It’s not a lost cause, in fact it could be amazing again if they just pick up where Part VI left off, get some new actors to play those characters, and keep going with that style of humor, but that’s just how I feel. What do you think, am I full of crap?