Audio

Take the Time To Dream

TRACK #156:

Take the Time to Dream by FM

A Friday the 13th, in October? Now that’s a rarity. You know we gotta represent on this one. Good thing The Shindig is prepared with a poppy piece of Crystal Lake cooning from Jason’s later catalog.

A lot of people dislike Friday the 13th Part 7: The New Blood. I’m not one of them, but they exist and  I can’t say I don’t blame them.

Its heavily censored kills feel like highway robbery, it has one most disappointing endings in the series, the teenage fodder on display isn’t particularly interesting and the film just feels tired. Psychic girl unwittingly resurrects Jason? C’mon…

However, 7 has a lot going for it. I think of it as Jason’s last hoorah, for it’s the last time he’s in his element doing what he does best, before he takes off to Manhattan, other peoples bodies, Hell, Space, Elm Street, and ultimately Remakewood. Say what you want about 7, it never gets this good (or as true to itself) again.

But it is stretching its limits, as the whole thing finally succumbs to the Elm Street Effect and goes full-on supernatural.

The psychic angle, while a bit much, offers some interest though. Mainly, it puts a new spin on a formula that had already well worn out its welcome, having seen probably it’s best reworking in Jason Lives. It also finally gives Jason a formidable opponent, something really unseen up to this point in the series, silly as that opponent might be.

However, New Blood’s biggest plus come in the form of Jason himself, namely the addition of literal new blood, Kane Hodder, and the make-up work of John Bulcher.

Jason never looked this good before, or after. This is it. This is the most badass Jason around. With his spine-exposed and masked destroyed, he’s constantly dripping water and stalking around with a menace unmatched. And lets face it, that’s what we’re all here to see.

The soundtrack is coming up pretty short here though, in my opinion. Mostly just handed over to prog-wavers FM out of what feel like laziness, the songs never play much prominence, or hit any high notes. Even the score here feels wrong.

However, I’ve chosen one of those FM tracks for the Shindig, mostly so I can rant a little about 7 a little and post some gifs. Besides, that opening narration is too cool not too use somewhere.

And as if the psychic wasn’t Elm Street enough for you, this song’s all about dreaming. Sure, it’s a more figurative kind of dreaming, but I still I think it’s safe to say that by 1987, Freddy was winning the fight.

Happy Friday, October The 13th!

 

Audio

Friday The 13th Part 3 Theme

TRACK #123:

Theme From Friday The 13th Part 3  by Hot Ice

It may not be Harry Manfredini’s classic score but the Theme From Friday The 13th Part 3  by Hot Ice is as bad news as any horror theme you can throw at me.

Spooky, synthy and down right Halloweeny, it’s one of my favorite horror themes ever. Even those partiers unfamiliar with its origins won’t question this instrumental inclusion on your Halloween playlist, so perfectly suited is it.

With a creepy theremin-like lead line  and a thumping baseline, Hot Ice delivered the goods, even if it was for an installment I’m less excited about.

Yeah, I’m not crazy about Part 3. I like it, don’t get me wrong and it has a lot going for it but if I’m ranking the first 5, it  probably looks something like 2, 1, 5, 4, 3 today. On the 10 film spectrum though, that puts it right about in the middle, assuming I don’t sock 6 or 7 above it, which sometimes I do. Why you ask?

Welp, it’s the kills. They’re a little lazy I think and the 3D (a gimmick I appreciated in the bad old days) actually hinders rather than enhances.

It almost appears as though the filmmakers were hoping the 3rd dimension would make any old bullshit look cool. It doesn’t.
Jason’s first hockey mask adorned kill is a great example of this. It should be intense, up close and gory. Instead he fires a harpoon across a dock, right at the audience’s face and into the eye of his young prey. It’s suppose to be cool, I guess. It’s not. Not even in 3D. It’s just weak. And lazy. Literally lazy. He fires a harpoon 20 yards. It’s whack as fuck. At least he looks like a badass tossin’ the gun down. There’s that I guess.

However, part 3 does have some stuff that makes it worthwhile. First and foremost, it’s from the early 80’s which just suites the Jason/Summer Camp/Slasher vibe better. The hockey mask makes its debut, there’s some great shots of Jason unmasked (including a horrifying final sequence), some fun assholes you really wanna see die, particularly Shelley and definitely this theme by Hot Ice.

 

Audio

He’s Back (The Man Behind The Mask)

TRACK #104:

He’s Back (The Man Behind The Mask) by Alice Cooper

In 1984, Paramount Pictutres made way too much money on Friday The 13th Part 4: The Final Chapter to let that truly be Jason’s final chapter. So they set upon quickly churning out a part 5. Only Jason was dead now,…for good,…right?

What’s a greedy production company to do?

So in 1985, Paramount quickly proceed to fuck right up. They essentially took the exact same model, delivered a by the numbers Friday installment, with Jason in a hockey mask and called it A New Beginning. Only they pulled the old Kansas City Shuffle. It wasn’t actually Jason. Fans were pissed.

Roy? Who the fuck is Roy? Seriously? This dude’s name is Roy?

Here’s Roy.

Fans didn’t cotton to old Roy here.

“But why?” You may ask.

There’s a guy in a hockey mask brutally murdering teenagers at a summer camp. Isn’t that the point? Fuck, Roy kills 18 people for Christ’s sake! Jason ain’t puttin’ up those kinda numbers yet. Who cares who’s under the mask? It’s been a different actor, sometimes in the same damn movie, since part 2. Is it that important it be Jason Voorhees?

Apparently so.

I’d say it’s a least somewhat important, if only to keep Friday the 13th from turning into a running Scooby-Doo gag. “Why it’s old man Burns, the guy who run’s that haunted ambulance!”

Plus, we always get a peak at Jason, and it’s usually fucking horrifying. Observe…

Maybe it’s a little important. No?

So, Paramount quickly swung in on a jungle vine for some damage control. In 1986 they unleashed Jason Lives and changed the entire franchise forever.

No more is Jason a mere mortal stalking the woods of Crystal Lake. He’s now a full fledged supernatural, unstoppable zombie killing machine.

No longer is the series a straight faced stalk-n-slash either. Tinges of satire, self parody and silliness have entered the Friday landscape.

Additionally this installment, while producing a sizable body count, is suspiciously lacking in the gore department. It’s also the only entry to feature no nudity. Fo reals?

But more importantly pop icons appear.

Enter Alice Cooper and his single He’s Back (The Man Behind the Mask) blatantly reassuring all the Friday Freaks that yes, he’s back. Yes, the man behind the mask, Jason. Don’t worry, we even put his name first in the title to placate all the jaded fans that may not come to suckle from our money cow’s teat.

Jason goes for a full blown team-up. Music videos, multiple songs, Fangoria spreads which give us such awesome images as this.
Thankfully, Jason didn’t take too many cues from Freddy, and remained silent. I don’t know if I could have handled a wisecracking Voorhees.

Despite its lighter tone and generalized Skynet-like self-awareness, Jason Lives is still a fine entry. Jason is still  menacing, and there are some good kills, however neutered they may feel. It’s certainly not the poorest entry and it has a lot of style. It may just be one of the more entertaining of The Fridays, but that’s all up for debate, as that assessment depends largely on your temperament and what kind of Friday you prefer.

It remains perhaps my favorite of the post zombie half of the series. It’s all downhill from 6, by degrees. I gotta a lotta love for aspects of 7 though, so there’s some wiggle room with that declaration.

Pulling Jason Voorhees clear into the the mid-80’s, here’s Alice Cooper’s He’s Back (The Man Behind the Mask)

 

Gallery

I Told You Never Shove Tommy Jarvis

Reason #2, 3, 4 and 5 why you should never shove Tommy Jarvis.

Image

Friday 5’s Strange Dance

Some more strange dancing, compliments of the Friday the 13th series.

Audio

His Eyes

TRACK #67:

His Eyes by Pseudo Echo

Let’s keep the 80’s dance party/Oddball sequel thing going here.

1985 offered us Freddy’s first foray into sequel-dom, however Jason was already and old man by ‘85, going on his 5th outing.

Perhaps one of the more derided films of the series, and certainly it’s oddball entry, Friday 5 is still Paramount, still hugely 80’s and (I think) rather unfairly maligned.

It’s hard to say which is the “worst”, as some thrive where others lack and vice-versa. Honestly, a lot of it just comes down to personal preference after a point.

5 however has the distinct honor of being the only entirely Jason-less sequel (save for the pre-credit sequence…I guess) as the killer is merely assuming the MO and hockey mask. This, more than any other reason, is why it finds itself on the bottom rung with fans.

What 5 has going for it however is a serious body count. Notably the most of any Friday the 13th film at 22. That’s gotta be worth something.

Sure the effects aren’t on par with other entries and a lot of the murders are cut-aways but this dude ices 22 different people and that’s an achievement, however lessened it may be by the fact that its not actually Jason killing these people (except the first 2 guys…I guess.)

This song, by Australian pop-smiths Pseudo Echo, plays while Violet is dancing and being murdered. The song was actually a suggestion of actress Tiffany Helm, a fan of the new wave and punk music of the day.

Imagine being able to select which song to which you’d be murdered by Jason? Pretty dope.

Interesting side note regarding Violets death. Originally, she was to take a machete to the vag. Now that’s a way to go.

However, the producers thought that was a bit much, and changed it to her stomach, which they don’t even really show anyway, so I guess it doesn’t even matter. Oh well.

This song is pretty awesome though and almost sounds as if it were written specifically about Jason. It was produced a year early however, so no luck there. It does fit in nicely into the movie however, and makes a great addition to The Shindig.