Slasher Films

JASON

Jason Voorhees

I know not everyone likes horror movies. Actually, some people downright hate them. Me? I love the genre. Get me anything with vampires, zombies, ghosts, demons, ghouls or your simple run-of-the-mill serial/spree killer and I’ll be one happy camper.

My favorite type of horror movie is the subgenre known as Slasher Film. What is that? Some of you might ask. Well, according to Wikipedia: “A slasher film is a subgenre of horror film, and at times thriller, typically involving a mysterious psychopathic killer stalking and killing a sequence of victims usually in a graphically violent manner, often with a cutting tool such as a knife or axe.

There was a time when they were really popular back in the 70s, and the 80s. And then again in the late 90s, after “Scream” hit the screens like a grenade launcher and gave birth to a new era of Slashers.

GhostFace

GhostFace

Those were the days, man.

Everything changes, I guess, and as time passed they became less popular. In the las decade, we had the “Slasher Remake Era”. But let’s save that subject for another post, shall we?

Nowadays you don’t really see any original mainstream slasher films. And that sucks. Slasher films are safest (and cheapest) way to get some adrenalin pumping into our systems. And it doesn’t even involve leaving the house!!!

Final Girls

Why do I love Slasher Films so much? For a lot of reasons, actually, but here’s the main one. As I mentioned in another post, I’m a sucker for strong female characters.

Laurie Strode

Laurie Strode

Slashers, particularly, are all about female empowerment. In most genres, the female characters are relegated to the roles of romantic interest and the damsel in distress.

That is not the case here. If you reduce the slashers’ plot to its bare bones what we get is: a virginal, seemingly meek young woman is attacked by remarkable male, survives the attack and eventually bests him.

Sydney Prescott

Sydney Prescott

There’s no John McLane, Martin Riggs or Tony Stark sweeping in and saving the day in the slasher genre. Laurie Strode, Sydney Prescott, Alice Hardy, Nancy Thompson, Julie James, Dana Polk, they’re the ones doing the saving.

They’re all resourceful girls who manage to outlive their peers and eventually put an end to whatever threat was coming their way.

Dead or Alive?

The Horror genre isn’t dead.

“The Possession”, “Paranormal Activity 4” and “Woman in Black” all performed well in the box office in 2012, proving that horror still interests the general public.

And I don’t think the genre will ever die, like Western did. Because, in a nutshell, It’s a really cheap to make a horror flick, and there are a lot of people who DO like to get scared out of their wits.

Who Killed the Slasher Films?

There’s not a real answer really. I mostly blame producers and writers, in that order. The last few at Slashers all bombed, because, for the most part, they all sucked, so that didn’t help.

We need another “Scream”, or “Halloween”, or “Nightmare on Elm Street”. I honestly think that all we need is another great, smart, scary teens in peril (as my good friend EL described) flick to kick start a new era of slashers.

Anyways, that’s it for now. Sorry about the rant, folks.

FAT MAN OUT!

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Buffy Summers x Bella Swan

TOPO

Bella Swan sucks. Before I started writing this thing, I considered being impartial, but it’s impossible. Bella Swan sucks balls. Now Buffy Summers, on the hand, rules. I’ve heard some complaints about how this isn’t a fair comparison, since Buffy is a certified super heroine, whereas Bella is just an ordinary girl. But I don’t think the comparison is really out there.

There’s no denial that both characters are relevant, maybe even equally relevant. Now, Buffy fans, wait a second. Before you gather the mobs with torches and pitchforks, look at Twilight’s numbers: 120 million books sold. Over 3 billion dollars grossed in the box office. Those numbers are impressive. But does that make Bella Swan a better character? Not even a little bit.

Here’s something I learned on my first screenwriting class: Flaws add depth and make your characters more relatable. Bella doesn’t have any flaws. Sure, someone’s gonna say: She’s clumsy! But, in my opinion, something that is cute and charming cannot be considered a flaw. It sure as heck isn’t a character flaw. Bella is really smart and cultured, and although she claims to think otherwise, she’s very attractive (I’ve lost count of how many guys fall for Bella throughout the series).

 Now, yes, Buffy’s also very attractive, and a few dudes fell for her when she first moved to Sunnydale. However, there’s a difference. Buffy IS supposed to be attractive. Joss Whedon created her to subvert the horror movie trope of the young, attractive blonde who always seemed to get killed by the monsters.

 That is not to say that Buffy isn’t without flaws.

She’s stubborn, impulsive and unlike Bella, who at 16 has read all the classics and is a fan of Debussy, Buffy is a C average student (at best). I could go on, but these are just minor flaws.

 While Bella is nothing but an idealized version of Stephenie Meyer herself, Buffy is a real person. There’s a great moment on season 01 which shows that. In the episode “Prophecy Girl”, upon hearing a prophecy that says she will face the Master and that he will kill her, Buffy’s reaction isn’t some sort of altruistic act. She doesn’t decide to face her foe, head on, like most super heroes would. Oh, no. Her reaction? In a heartbreaking scene, Buffy quits, because she’s afraid of dying. What’s more human than fear?

“Giles, I'm sixteen years old. I don't wanna die.”

“Giles, I’m sixteen years old. I don’t wanna die.”

I guess, not all characters need to change. Not all characters need flaws. There is something called Catalyst Characters. But Bella doesn’t fall into that category because she doesn’t really change the world around her. Moreover, she is changed by it. As if Stephanie Meyer is telling young women all around the world that they SHOULD change in order to be good enough for their men.

Bella as a Vampire.

Bella as a Vampire.

Buffy doesn’t change who she is because of her lovers. Instead, they became better people because of her. Angel goes from being a rat eating bum into a champion who saved the world several times. Spike who was a monster, wins his soul back and becomes a man.

“I know I am a monster, but you treat me like a man.”

“I know I am a monster, but you treat me like a man.”

 Edward is Bella’s whole world. When he leaves her, Bella basically goes catatonic for a few months, and she only truly ‘heals’ when he decides to take her back.

Bella in "New Moon"

Bella in “New Moon”

You could argue that Buffy had a similar reaction when she ran away to Los Angeles in “Becoming” (Part 2). The difference is Buffy killed Angel, to save the world. She was willing to sacrifice her own happiness for the greater good.

“Buffy…”

“Buffy…”

I love Buffy because she is a progressive role model who shatters the world’s patriarchal notions of gender roles. And I dislike Bella because she conforms to it and because Twilight sends a dangerous anti-feminist message, and the world doesn’t really need any more of that.

BUFFY x BELLA 2

Alright, those were my 2 cents. Don’t spend it all in one place, peeps.

 Love,

The Fat Man.

PS: Buffy would totally kick Bella’s ass.