Ghostface Hits the Silver Screen Once More


The sixth installment of the famed series has fans from multiple generations finding new joy in the horror genre.

Clay Arnold, Editor

The Scream franchise is one of the most well-known horror series of all time. Beginning in 1996, the six-part movie series has captured the attention of multiple generations of horror fans. Director, Wes Craven, credited with the first four installments of the series, was a well-known name in the horror scene before the first movie came out. This is due to his work on the classic 80’s slasher series “A Nightmare on Elm Street” featuring everyone’s favorite knife-handed dream killer, Freddy Krueger. What sets these two series apart is the fact that Elm Street was essential in solidifying the many famous horror movie tropes. The Scream franchise is credited with analyzing these tropes and using them to create a new, original story. 

On December 20th, 1996 audiences first heard that famous question: “What’s your favorite scary movie?” Ghostface asked Drew Barrymore’s character Casey Becker. This sequence leads to her unforeseen onscreen death, changing the horror genre forever. Multiple slashers were mentioned in the terrifying scene such as Michael Myers, Freddy Krueger, and Jason Voorhees. This new “horror movie inside a horror movie” idea was not heard of, already solidifying Scream’s place in the memories of horror fans. The following story, about Sidney Prescott’s unsettling family history and terrible dating track record, introduced fans to the idea that horror can have an engaging plot, more than just blood and nudity. 

The following movies introduced fans to the idea of sequels and trilogies having their own tropes. Originally, Scream was supposed to be a trilogy, ending with the third movie tying off the original storyline with a big twist, ending Ghostface’s reign of terror on Sid’s life. This shifted in 2011 when Scream 4 was released. The trope of pushing a series into the ground with an installment long after the original series. This film had audiences skeptical but pleased with its once again, original plot and surprising twist ending. Again, the series did not disappoint to bring new and exciting plot features for viewers to enjoy. 

Following Craven’s death in 2015, horror fans believed they would never again see Ghostface on the silver screen. These thoughts were pleasantly disproved when Radio Silence, credited with the movie “Ready or Not” picked the series up for a fifth installment. This shocked fans seeing as the film came out a full ten years after its previous installment. The trope this film analyzed was the “Requel”. This is when film a series is brought back to life by continuing the same storyline but with a new, fresh set of characters with their own personalities and struggles. The characters Sidney, Gale, and Dewey all made appearances as they were in the first four films, appealing to audiences’ thirst for nostalgia and continuity. 

The series’s sixth installment has just come out, analyzing when a series becomes a franchise. Following the same characters as the fifth film, new concepts, bigger budgets, and more twists are expected and presented in the New York-based story. 

Not much can be said for this franchise other than praise for its continued originality and its pushing of boundaries. There will always be criticism for small imperfections and plot holes in a series so largely viewed and evaluated but overall, the franchise cannot be overlooked as just another slasher story when this story changed the genre forever.