Where evil twins and friends come together to lovingly snark Point Horror and other teen genre fiction
 

Recap #161: Friday the 13th: A New Beginning

Friday 13th New Beginning Part V 1985Title: Friday the 13th: The Final Chapter (1985) (aka Part V)

Summary: Still haunted by his past, Tommy Jarvis – who, as a child, killed Jason Voorhees – wonders if the serial killer is connected to a series of brutal murders occurring in and around the secluded halfway house where he now lives.

Tagline: The mindless, murderous fury that was buried with Jason has been reborn. And suddenly, terror has become child’s play! 

Notes: If we had looked at that poster in a design class in art college, it would have been unanimously voted as totally shitty. Wow, didn’t try very hard, did you, graphic design department. I’m not just haunted by Jason; I’m haunted by that terrible typography!

Initial Thoughts:

Hey, remember when we watched Friday the 13th: The Final Chapter and this experiment in terror was all over and I could move forward with my life?

Oh… wait…

[Wing: If there’s one* horror media rule that holds up it is this: The final chapter is never the final chapter.]

[Wing: *exaggeration, I know.]

Welcome back for yet another stimulating round of Let’s Do It!: A Virgin Does Horror! What was a “dead” franchise last entry has now been revived, because the world at large missed Jason Voorhees and his murderous hi-jinx. It wouldn’t have been the 1980s without beating a dead horse in an attempt to cash in further on a franchise that had utterly run out of steam. Or the 1990s, the 00s, and the 2010s…

I have actually read that this installment is akin to “a fucking porno in the woods […]. You wouldn’t believe the nudity they cut out,” which comes directly from the director’s mouth. So, thanks, Danny Steinmann, this will be horrible and awkward as hell, or more so than previous entries.

Because I have committed myself to the cause, as it were, I have no choice but to ride this chapter out. Oh well. At least I’m nearing the halfway point in this franchise, so there’s a dim light at the end of the tunnel but it’s probably a flood light Jason turned on to draw me closer to my own death. Yay!

(Save me, Kevin Bacon! Save me!)

Let’s see. Again, can’t read too much on the wiki or IMDb entries because SPOILERS and I honestly have ZERO MEMORY of this installment’s release. In March 1985, I would have been 3 years old, so that’s probably why. Also, the use of the hockey mask with the light blue triangles instead of the red triangles – way to screw shit up, costume department / graphics department! I know, I know, continuity is often a hopeless failure in this series. I ask too much. STOP SETTING THE BAR SO HIGH, VIRGIN.

Corey Feldman did reprise his role as Tommy Jarvis for this film, which is great since it means no shitty “we used stuff we filmed in the previous entry to insert said character into this film!” From what I’ve read he was busy shooting The Goonies (A VASTLY SUPERIOR FILM IN MY HUMBLE OPINION AND THAT’S NOT JUST BECAUSE I LITERALLY LIVE IN THE ACTUAL STATE WHERE IT WAS FILMED, THEREFORE I AM AN OFFICIAL GOONIE BY BIRTH) so on his day off, Feldman filmed his scenes in his family’s backyard in California, with a helpful rain machine. Huh. Movie magic, yo.

I recognize no other cast member’s name in this, so I’m not hoping for high caliber performances. I guess it was filmed under a fake title, so no one really understood/knew they were filming a Friday the 13th installment. Yikes. This whole thing sounds as doomed as the previous installment(s). No bueno.

Without further adieu, because I’m already bored and dreading this… fifth time’s a charm, right?

Important note! Remember, I am rolling over the body count from each of the previous films recapped, so that will be reflected in the counter and final tally.

Recap

Oh, the good old Paramount logo, with the giant mountain and the stars. Basically the only part of this film I will ever like / enjoy. I’ve barely hit ‘PLAY’ and I’m already asking if this film is over yet. NOT A GOOD START.

I know I’m not getting this hour and a half (so, say, 6-8 hours recapping) back. Sigh.

Immediately we plunge in. Someone in a yellow rain slicker, black pants and black rain boots, is walking down a path through a wooded area. The rain is pouring down, the torch (er flashlight?) is barely cutting through the gloom. Did I mention the person is short of stature, like child-sized?

I WONDER WHO THIS COULD BE.

Pointless Foreshadowing For Fun and Profit: 1 (+1)

The figure finally comes to a stop, and it seems we’ve come to a cemetery in the woods. Spooky. The yellow slicker-clad figure heads toward a seemingly fresh grave, set apart from the “older” section where there’s a lot of headstones clumped together. Isn’t that always the case?

As if no one hadn’t already figured it out, it’s little Tommy Jarvis, his round glasses coated in rain drops, visiting the grave of…

… JASON VORHEES??

Whoa, plot twist!

Tommy is shaking and nervous, obvs, as he stands at the foot of the stone block encircled grave. The mound of dirt is still fresh. I guess it’s the good Christian (?) thing to go, burying the dude you killed in self-defense. Explains why the grave is separate from the rest.

From the looks of it, no one dug the goddamn grave DEEP ENOUGH. I would think at minimum, 12 feet down would have been a proper starting place. This just looks dangerous and shallow.

Pointless Foreshadowing For Fun and Profit: 1 (+2)

In the distance, another flashlight is seen through the trees and voices; someone’s out looking for Tommy. Seeing them, Tommy bolts back the way he came, hiding in the bushes. Okay, no! They weren’t looking for Tommy!

TWO MORONS JUST CAME SEEKING JASON’S GRAVE, ARMED WITH SHOVELS.

Pointless Foreshadowing For Fun and Profit: 1 (+3)

From the noises and sounds they’re making, they’re token rednecks. How stereotypical. Tommy watches from the shrubberies in shock and disbelief that people are morons and do this kind of shit. Welcome to humans, Tommy.

The two morons are egging each other on to dig faster, gotta see the corpse asap! Just as I suspected, the coffin is barely in the ground, as they come to the wooden top of the box almost immediately. They set to prying the lid off, soon successful, as one kneels down and peers into the coffin.

Tommy is so stunned he takes off his glasses and stares in shock, mouth agape.

Well, sure enough, lit by the helpful flash of lightning, THHHHHHHEEEERRRREEEEEE’S JAAAAASSSON! For some reason they buried him wearing his hockey mask (??) and there’s giant sized night-crawlers oozing out of the eye sockets (sure) and the rednecks are breathing hard with anticipation and SUDDENLY JASON’S ARM RAISES THE MACHETE THAT WAS CONVENIENTLY BURIED WITH HIM IN HIS HAND.

Tommy and I are shocked, I tell you. Just. Shocked.

The rednecks who dared to disturb Jason’s final resting place are immediately dispatched: one through a stomach wound, the other gets his neck/throat stabbed. Both fall down dead.

Crystal Lake Body Count: 2 (+48)

We are only three and a half minutes into the film, people.

Tommy crouches back down into the bushes. Jason slowly rises from his temporary grave. Like, literally sits up in it before getting up and stepping out of it, staring directly at Tommy in his hiding spot.

I want to note that he’s wearing the proper red triangles mask for this.

Anyway, TOMMY IS TOO SHOCKED TO SCREAM. Though he does make some panicked noises and emotes well, because Corey Feldman. Jason turns and pulls the machete from one of the victims before slowly plodding through the downpour towards Tommy.

Killer and Victim stare off, Tommy making noises of fear and protest as Jason raises the machete, the lightning helpfully illuminating the blade, before the film goes all slow-mo as Jason slashes the machete down and Tommy screams ‘NOOOOOOO!’

And now-adult Tommy awakens in the back of a van. Gasping and wild-eyed, he takes stock in his surroundings as the memory (nightmare?) fades. Looking forward, he can see the cop driving, the facility attendant engrossed in an adult magazine in the passenger seat, and chain link fencing (?) separating the front compartment and passenger seats.

Tommy lays his head back against the window and closes his eyes.

On the side of the car door, a logo for UNGER INSTITUTE OF MENTAL HEALTH is spray painted. Yeah, I’m already not looking forward to this even more so than I already wasn’t. Because we all know how well these movies handle mental health with such amazing tact and sensitivity!

The screen goes black before the damn instrumental theme that plagues my dreams starts playing, white text credits begin to roll, and I die a little more inside.

I think this is actually the 3D logo but there’s like NO 3D EFFECT so what the fuck. The gold color rolls over white before the hockey mask with the blue triangles comes zooming in and literally busts into the logo, making it explode, as A NEW BEGINNING appears on the screen.

Pointless Foreshadowing For Fun and Profit: 1 (+4)

Well, that’s one way to do it.

The hockey mask rotates around and we slide through the eye hole as the rest of the credits roll. Honestly recognize no names what-so-ever, but a little side jaunt to the wiki reveals there’s a few I do know (and one with a weird tie to a movie Wing would know, but I’m saving that!) but anyway, most of these actors and actresses never made it out of the Z-list.

The screen finally rolls white and dissolves into the blue skies of present day (which I’m not sure when that is… wasn’t there a time jump at some point in this series? Does it honestly matter??) and the camera pans down to show us some big over grown willow trees and a sign that reads PINEHURST YOUTH DEVELOPMENT CENTER PRIVATE. Oh, it’s a farm. Okay.

The transport van goes speeding down the leaf-strewn driveway, disturbing the sheep in their pen, which is ridiculously close to said driveway.

Tommy, awake, sits in the passenger compartment, staring the stare of a thousand yards. (Okay this is where I was like “wow, dude’s kinda cute in a… OH MY GOD STOP IT, VIRGIN.” I know I have a goddamn type, please stop reminding me, brain.) He comes to, as it were, was the van drives past the barn/pens, and a dude driving a front loader piece of equipment. I can’t say they exactly share looks but neither is looking upon the other real friendly-like.

The van rolls past an orchard of some sort, where a woman and a man are standing by the side of the road. Tommy doesn’t seem to see them; the man notes to the woman, “that must be the new kid.”

Wait, wait, wait… this is a youth center. NONE OF THESE PEOPLE LOOK REMOTELY “YOUTHFUL” IN THE SENSE THAT I AM EXPECTING. Great, epic fail.

The van pulls into a parking area, which is just a dirt lot who are we kidding, and backs up, turning around to probably rocket the fuck out of there as soon as the cargo is deposited. Tommy clutches a bag of his belongings.

The attendant orders everyone out (har har) as this is the last stop. The driver looks like he’s so over it. Tommy doesn’t move, so the attendant claps his hands and whistles as though Tommy is a fucking animal. Great. Just great.

A blonde woman comes out of, well, it’s a house, and immediately walks to the van, pleasantly asking if Tommy is Tommy Jarvis. She expertly ignores the sleazy and awful attendant. She introduces herself as Pam Roberts, the assistant director of the development center. She finally is able to coax Tommy out of the van and into the house to meet the doctor.

As they walk through the house, Pam asks Tommy some questions but he doesn’t speak a single word or make a sound. She’s pleasant about it, though, eventually knocking on a shuttered door, before entering the doctor’s office.

THE GUY WHO GAVE INDIANA JONES HIS FEDORA IS THE DOCTOR. OH MY GOD.

No, really, Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade is one of my top 20 favorite films and I’ve seen it enough times to recognize Richard Young. Small world. Anyway, Dr. Matthew Letter greets Tommy and asks him to take a seat, saying stuff about explaining Pinewood before they’ll get Tommy settled.

Pam looks pretty chummy with Matthew, sitting on the edge of the desk in a casual way. Hm. Tommy still doesn’t speak, just plays with the zipper on his dufflebag. Matthew presses and finally Tommy answers.

Pinewood is apparently a minimum security residential facility without guards, that runs on an honors system. OH THIS JUST BODES WELL.

Pointless Foreshadowing For Fun and Profit: 1 (+5)

Pinewood is supposed to help Tommy prepare for reintegration into society. Also, I just realized that the sign read PINEHURST but everyone is calling it PINEWOOD so there’s a giant fucking fuck up and I can’t imagine it’s going to get any better. All down hill from here.

Welp, Matthew asks Pam to direct Tommy to his new room, so she just stands there and tells him to go through the kitchen, up the stairs, and yadda yadda and off Tommy goes. Like, what the hell, maybe take him there? Nope. Pam sticks in the doctor’s office, while he picks up a chart folder and starts reading.

They immediately start discussing Tommy, Matthew reading through the kid’s chart, about how he suffers from severe psychological trauma as a result of a brutal murder of a psychopathic killer at age 12. He’s been through the treatment ringer, with everything thrown at him as well as medications and Matthew is shocked the kid’s brain isn’t fried.

Oh, Smash Cut, we meet again.

Tommy is upstairs, glasses off, staring at a strange photo of his mom, sister, and good old Gordon on their cabin porch, in better days. Putting the framed photo on the desk or something, he unfolds a large knife. Hm.

Pointless Foreshadowing For Fun and Profit: 1 (+6)

We’re really lingering on Tommy studying the knife here. Great. Why wasn’t he searched? (Right, right, this is a horror film, that’s asking too much.) He finally folds it closed and tucks it between the mattress and box spring.

Unpacking the rest of his clothing from the duffel bag, Tommy walks over to a closet, opens the door and DON’T LOOK, WING! A giant rubber spider falls down and startles him. Tommy stands there, staring at it, and we hear giggling.

A younger boy, who’s probably a more appropriate age for the facility then the rest we’ve seen, hops down from inside the closet, asking if Tommy is scared of spiders. Um, duh. He sums up that Tommy is one “scared cat”. Honestly, because what I’ve read tells me only that this is “a few years” after the events of the prior film, but the actor playing Tommy looks at least 25, this is just confusing as to how old Tommy is actually supposed to be.

[Wing: Ugh, why is it always a spider?]

Anyway, Reggie the Reckless informs Tommy he needs to grow a pair. Tommy, having turned his back to Reggie, whips back around, now wearing an alien-type mask (probably one he made, because remember how he was a child prodigy in sfx makeup??) and BOY REGGIE DOESN’T LIKE THAT!

Tommy takes the mask off, doesn’t say a word, just gives Reggie a look. Poor kid’s heart is beating out of his rib cage. Tommy literally begins to pull an army’s worth of horror masks out of the duffel bag. Okay.

Pointless Foreshadowing For Fun and Profit: 1 (+7)

Reggie comes over and picks one up, getting a sharp reprimand from Tommy. He even admits that he’s made the masks. Wow, suddenly so talkative, Tommy. Reggie is actually impressed.

We learn that Reggie isn’t a resident; his grandfather works at the facility. Uh huh.

Pointless Foreshadowing For Fun and Profit: 1 (+8)

Sirens outside draw Reggie away from chatting with Tommy. Outside, a police car is pulling up the driveway, causing much excitement. Reggie is about to run over when his grandfather, George, stops him. (Oh, hey, Vernon Washington! I remember you as Otis in The Last Starfighter!) Apparently the arrival is the most interesting event of the day (sorry, Tommy) as Matthew, Pam, the three other people we saw on the way in,  some other dude I don’t recognize, a punk rock chick, Reggie, and George have all gathered round to watch the police officers arrive with a yet-unseen passenger.

One officer (sheriff?) comes over and reminds Matthew that many neighbors that abut the property aren’t happy about the facility’s existence. Well, duh, because that’s always how people are when mental health treatment is involved. Apparently a few charges were found on the Hubbard’s property, again.

Pointless Foreshadowing For Fun and Profit: 1 (+9)

A young couple, the girl overly giggly, the dude sporting shades and a barely buttoned sleeveless plaid shirt, pop out of the backseat. Oh goodie. They hightail it over to the rest of the group.

Tommy stares down at the circus from his window. I feel for him.

The cop informs Matthew they were found in the woods “screwing their heads off” (charming) but Ethel Hubbard didn’t see them, so everyone’s lucky. (??)

But, no, just then another pair arrive on a loud motorbike. It’s Ethel! And boy she’s hopping mad! She demands the sheriff (aha!) close down this “looney bin” immediately! She insists that the charges respect no one and are all “crazy”.

Mental health: with tact and sensitivity: 2 (+2)

I will enjoy when Ethel dies. I hope it’s spectacularly violent.

Oh, so the bike driver is Ethel’s son. Figures. He crows and cheers his mother on, who turns around to tell him to “shut the fuck up”.

Then Ethel does something you never do in a horror movie: say ‘mark my words’ and add a threat. She promises to blow the head off of any of the patients who dare set foot on her property. Nice. Right in front of the cop.

Let’s see if he does anything to her!

The sheriff moves to push her back and she tells him not to touch her, she has a “bomb” on her. WTF. She backs up, tells Junior to start the bike, climbs on, and flips everyone off.

“That’s it, my final words!” She yells.

Pointless Foreshadowing For Fun and Profit: 1 (+10)

So, the sheriff does nothing about Ethel’s threats (white privilege? I dunno.) [Wing: Yes.] and even stands around laughing about it with Matthew (??) but warns him to keep the kids off Ethel’s land. Uh huh. The topic quickly changes to Tommy’s arrival. The sheriff is real interested in what Tommy’s “like”. Matthew defends Tommy, saying his just like the rest (???) and the sheriff takes his leave. Oh lord help me.

Smash cut to an ax slamming into a log! What a segue way. Dude from the front end loader, who wears a studded leather armband around his upper left arm (??) and a belt that looks like it walked out of a BDSM shop, is chopping wood. Should they be allowed items that are technically weapons? In the background, two of the female residents are hanging laundry on the line.

Exiting the house, what will be our token “fat” character comes out eating a chocolate bar. Of course it’s melted all over his mouth. Ugh. Don’t make me miss Shelley.

He looks over in the direction of wood chopper, who spits on the ground and looks disgusted. Chocolate bar turns his attention towards the laundry line. He walks over and greets them. “Hi Joey,” one replies. Punk girl, wearing her headphones, is folding boxers while the other with the side ponytail and red sweater hangs stuff on the line.

Oh, punk girl is Violet. Sweater is Robin. Got it.

Oh great. Not only is Joey the “token fat stereotype”, he’s also a little “slow” mentally. Just smash all those stereotype buttons, writers. Joey can’t understand why he’s never been assigned laundry. I dunno, your chocolate covered sticky hands might be why. He insists he can help the ladies get their job done faster!

Joey tries to offer them half a chocolate bar that he’s already eaten, which ends with Violet telling him to piss off. Not taking a hint, Joey picks up a bundle of white sheets and smears them with chocolate. The girls scream and order him to leave them to their chores. Joey eventually leaves but not before trying to guilt them into asking him to stay. Ugh.

So, of course, Joey heads over to leather belt boy, who’s chopping away. He greets Vic, who tells Joey to get lost. Joey tries to offer Vic a chocolate bar stashed in his sweatshirt pocket. Vic isn’t having it.

Now we get Joey’s sob story: he’s an orphan who never had anything to do (??) who got teased and picked on but at Pinewood he feels like he can help and do chores and VIC IS CHOPPING WITH SUCH INTENSITY. Joey really wants to learn to chop wood.

Vic screams at Joey to leave him alone, brandishing the ax quite pointedly. Joey, too stupid to take a hint, puts the chocolate bar on the log, which Vic immediately chops into pieces.

Joey, squeezing the melted, half-eaten chocolate bar in his hand, tells Vic that he’s “really out of line!” before turning and walking away.

Vic snarls and swings the ax blade right into the back of Joey’s head repeatedly, Matthew runs and looks out the window in horror, with Robin screaming as she witnesses Joey’s murder.

Crystal Lake Body Count: 1 (+49)

OH MY GOD DID NOT SEE THAT COMING! Wow, they are not holding back in this installment. Well, okay, bye bye, Joey. Can’t say I’ll actually miss you.

The cops are on scene, an old school ambulance arriving shortly after. The attendants grab the gurney to load up Joey’s corpse while Vic is chilling in the back of the cop car. The cop is on the radio, asking for info on Vic (and his probably huge rap sheet.)

Tommy is standing on the porch, staring at the blood soaked sheet that’s covering Joey’s body where it lies in the yard. Pam is trying to comfort a hysterical Robin, while the sheriff asks Matthew if there’s anyone to notify. We hear more of Joey’s tragic backstory while the attendants arrive with the gurney.

Okay, now we see all the residents are standing around. Ugh. Blond attendant pulls back the sheet, revealing a very chopped up Joey; his severed arm has been placed on his destroyed back. Of course everyone freaks out and cries or turns away, even the second attendant is grossed out. Blond attendant just mutters “fucking pussies” and OH MY GOD WHAT THE ACTUAL FUCK, WRITERS.

Boy, it’s like they really want me to hate this installment the most. I didn’t think that was possible after the last three, but here I am, absolutely pissed off.

Roy, the attendant with a modicum of humanity, walks over and covers up Joey’s corpse, which is already attracting flies. The screen fades to black.

Pointless Foreshadowing For Fun and Profit: 1 (+11)

I’m putting that there because my gut tells me Roy will be back and somehow involved down the road.

Someone’s opening a car trunk, a metal gasoline can prominently placed in the middle. (I wonder.) It looks like two greasers had a break down on the side of the road. One is bitching at the other, Pete, the second hood, is complaining that “those cunts” won’t wait all night. Oh great. This just gets better and better.

First greaser attempts to do something to the engine to fix it, which only results in a bunch of sparks. Pete is too busy fixing his hair to do anything. His friend starts yelling about how it’s all Pete’s fault and he needs to get off his ass and fix the car himself. That’s when it gets deathly quiet and Pete doesn’t respond.

Pointless Foreshadowing For Fun and Profit: 1 (+12)

Suddenly the car horn BLARES and Pete starts laughing and me and the original greaser are going to murder Pete. Pete rags on Vinnie (oh good, we finally have a name) and accusing him of being A) afraid of the dark and B) scared of the murder at the “nut house”.

“As far as I’m concerned, all those loonies should be killed off, one by one.” Vinnie, you and Pete are real assholes.

I have so much contempt for this film, seriously.

Wow, I can’t even, what just happened?? Pete attempts to start the car but of course it won’t turn over, so he demands Vinnie have it fixed by the time he gets back from having a crap in the woods. LITERALLY. HE SAYS HE’S GOING TO GO CRAP IN THE WOODS.

Pointless Foreshadowing For Fun and Profit: 1 (+13)

I am putting that in because it’s a horror movie and you should never use the bathroom, a real one or crap in the woods, during a fucking horror movie.

And then Vinnie, left alone to fix the car, takes off his pristine leather jacket and just drops it on the dirty ground. I CANNOT.

Pete wanders the woods, taking his precious time to scout out a suitable location in which to crap via flash light, so whether the need is really pressing or not is anyone’s guess. The score wants me to know this is a terrible idea (no, really) and it takes a bit but Pete finally realizes he may not be alone.

It’s just a damn rabbit. And Pete is only scared enough to swear at it as it hops away, he doesn’t crap his tight jeans.

Back at the car, a mysterious hand ignites a road flare. Vinnie turns around and asks whom he assumes is Pete is doing, WELL DUH IT’S NOT PETE, HE’S STILL CRAPPING IN THE WOODS. I guess it’s super dark in the woods, and the ignited road flare that is so bright isn’t bright enough to illuminate the face of the killer, because suddenly the road flare is jammed into a very fake version of Vinnie’s head, via his open mouth. It literally illuminates him from the inside. Sure.

Crystal Lake Body Count: 1 (+50) (Hey, look! We hit the halfway to 100 mark, and it only took five films! High-fives all around, everybody!)

We hardly knew ye, Vinnie, but we won’t miss you.

Pete returns, jazzed about his successful crap in the woods (he is singing his own soundtrack, no lie) and informs Pete he better have the car running or he’s a dead man.

Pointless Foreshadowing For Fun and Profit: 1 (+14)

Pete passes right by Vinnie’s body, which is draped over the open engine compartment in a way that it’s FUCKING OBVIOUS he is not doing anything to the engine, he’s just dead.

Continuing to sing about how the car is fucked and how he’s going to kick Vinnie’s ass, Pete tries and tries to get the ignition to turn over. Unsurprisingly, it finally does.

Yelling at Vinnie to get in the car, a hand reaches from behind Pete, out of the back seat, and pins him by the forehead. A huge machete comes out and slices across his throat.

Crystal Lake Body Count: 1 (+51)

Though, looking at this frame, there’s no actual FX fake wound; they just drew a line of fake blood across the actor’s throat.

Sigh.

Pete’s lifeless body falls forward, his head landing against the steering wheel, the horn blaring loudly as we (again) fade to black.

I feel like the writers are just hardly even trying here. OH FOR THE DAYS OF THE FIRST FILM.

We rejoin Tommy, who’s lying in bed, sweat-soaked and upset, as he hears his younger self yelling “DIE!” at Jason Voorhees. His sister is yelling his name in the memory as well, and I guess this is a cheap way to do a flashback without using actual footage. Clever?

Tommy tries to squeeze the memories out of his mind (??) before finally getting out of bed and wandering over to the dresser mirror to stare at himself. Rifling in a drawer, he finds all the bottles of pills, selecting one and availing himself to the contents. As soon as he’s dry swallowed a pill, the voices cease but we see Jason in the mirror, standing behind him, bloodied machete raised.

Panicking, Tommy turns around and realizes he’s having hallucinations. He pounds his fists on the dresser and half collapses against it. Yeah, I don’t think the meds are working.

Down in the dining room, Reggie’s taking a platter of scrambled eggs to the table, as Violet and some other girl are setting it. Dude, those are gonna get cold! Reggie asks George, his grandpa, if he can go see his brother in town tomorrow. George doesn’t look real thrilled with the idea and says so.

Pointless Foreshadowing For Fun and Profit: 1 (+15)

Reggie sulks in a chair while George smiles and chuckles, before walking over and giving him a hug and a kiss. He sends Reggie to alert everyone breakfast is ready, which of course means Reggie YELLS HIS HEAD OFF.

A few members of the program wander in, one dude lamenting the loss of Joey. Pamela greets everyone as she takes a seat. Apparently Violet made up a few too many place settings, which upsets the other girl, and Violet freaks out, removing Vic and Joey’s plates.

The dude who was lamenting Joey’s death is apparently a stutterer. Great. He berates Violet for setting a place for a dead person and Violet snarls in return about how she apologized.

Matthew arrives and asks what’s going on, which means an awkward silence fills the room. Nice. He takes a seat at the head of the table and lays it all out, how everyone’s been greatly affected by Joey’s murder at the hands of Vic, but let’s just have breakfast, okay??

Of course Tommy chooses right then to make his entrance.

No one seems to take note, Matthew even asks where Eddie is, before noticing Tommy and asking him to get Eddie. Um, okay. Tommy doesn’t seem to be real interested in it but he finally agrees to. And that’s when Eddie runs in wearing a huge, furry werewolf mask, scaring Tommy (and me, but I’m super jumpy right now because of reasons.) [Wing: Werewolves would make this movie bet–okay, that’s a lie, but maybe slightly less terrible.]

Everyone laughs but Tommy, and Eddie is of course a jerk about playing a prank (may he die painfully as well) and keeps play punching Tommy in the shoulder, asking if he can’t take a joke.

Tommy suddenly grabs Eddie, throws him over his shoulder, and slams him down into a side table full of fruit. DAMN! He then starts punching and wailing on Eddie, while everyone sits there in shock. Matthew manages to get up and tackle Tommy, pinning him to the wall with his arm across Tommy’s throat, telling him everything will be all right.

Pointless Foreshadowing For Fun and Profit: 1 (+16)

UM, NO, NO IT WILL NOT BE.

We SMASH CUT to a huge, well-worn cleaver being brought down hard on the neck of a dead and plucked chicken. Thanks for that. For some reason the blow isn’t hard enough to sever the neck and head from the body (??) so Ethel Hubbard picks up the whole carcass and tells the dead chicken how she’s going to chop it into itty bitty pieces, “just like they did to that fucking pig-o (pinko?) over at that crazy farm!” What the hell.

She’s squealing while slamming the cleaver into the carcass, son Junior mimicking her while he chows down on a bowl of fruit loops. Great. Oh, my bad, it’s a bowl of the “best goddamn stew in the whole world.” Whatever. Ethel is a horrible person and you know, there’s a way to write horrible characters without them being this ridiculously over-the-top abrasive but that would be asking too much of these writers. Clearly viewers are meant to feel disgust and hatred of this woman but geez. Overkill.

There’s some kind of commotion outside, in what I gather is the hen house, resulting in Ethel insisting it’s that coyote again. Okay. She grabs her shotgun and heads to the door, where a dude in a ratty white tank top is standing outside the screen door. Ethel swears him to death (unfortunately not literally) in greeting.

He doesn’t exactly answer who he is but informs her he hasn’t eaten in two days and needs a meal. Of course a meal isn’t free with Ethel. She demands he clean the chicken shit out of the coop and dump it, before he can come back and get his stomach filled.

Ethel heads back in the kitchen, and everything she says gets parroted by Junior. This greatly upsets her but she heads back to cleaving the chicken carcass with violence. Okay.

SMASH CUT to the sheriff, who’s directing the team searching the woods for any evidence, since now the bodies of Vinnie and Pete have been found. (What, you want them to bring back Pete’s crap from the woods?) The ambulance attendants that picked up Joey’s body are back, lifting a black body bag from the road.

The sheriff wonders aloud what’s going on and though it’s technically a rhetorical question, Roy, the attendant who couldn’t handle the gore, asks if the sheriff is asking him. (Is this what is supposed to pass for comedy/humor in this film?) The sheriff tells him no, just take the bodies and go.

Another deputy wanders over and tells the sheriff it appears they’ve got another maniac on the loose. (What, who’s the first one?)

Suddenly it’s night again and a speeding muscle car skids into a turn worthy of Tokyo Drift, spinning around in a lot outside a diner while repeatedly honking the horn. Has the driver come to pick someone up? LET’S FIND OUT.

Well, for some reason, the driver start’s yelling for Lana, a tall blonde woman who opens the door and leans out, smiling. Yeah, I love being yelled at by reckless drivers, too.

She informs the driver that the diner is closed but he counters he wants a “take out” order. Oh god, ick. Dude looks nothing like I imagined. He orders “Lana, to go, with nothing on it.” Please stop this pathetic role-playing, it’s just embarrassing.

So apparently the driver works at the Unger Institute, and he’s very demanding in wanting Lana to hurry up and join him. Lana “asks” herself is she really wants to go with Billy, but then informs him she has to finish up so he’ll have to wait.

Pointless Foreshadowing For Fun and Profit: 1 (+17)

This will end poorly.

Lana hurriedly wipes an inch of the counter off before throwing the towel down, leaving everything else unfinished as she announces she’s going to party. Grabbing her bag, she runs into the bathroom and poses in front of the mirror, making kissy faces and putting her hair up (??) before unzipping her uniform and flashing her bare breasts at the mirror. “It’s showtime!” she yells and I half expect Beetlejuice to appear.

Billy, meanwhile, is drumming on the steering wheel of the car in time to the beat of the generic rock music. He pulls out a bag of what I’m assuming is cocaine, placing it strategically for future use, before taping out the contents of a tiny jar, yammering about “snow flurries up your nose”. Just Say No, kids.

Back in the diner bathroom, Lana has changed and is busy spraying Binaca into her mouth before spraying it into her cleavage (??) and singing nonsense while putting on her lipstick. There’s a crash in the diner, the sounds of breaking dishes, which draw Lana’s attention. She leans out of the doorway and looks around, but sees nothing and no one. Billy’s car is still parked outside the diner, visible through the window.

Pointless Foreshadowing For Fun and Profit: 1 (+18)

Returning to her lipstick, telling herself she’s so hot, Lana is set for the partying she and Billy are going to do. She steps out into the diner and a cat flies in front of her. The poor thing smashes its face into one of the booth seats (it literally looks like it was thrown at the booth) and Lana is startled. She watches it run away before we smash cut over to Billy, who’s back to drumming on the steering wheel, his cocaine high already coming on.

He starts yelling for Lana, honking the horn, and wondering why she’s taking so long. Opening the car door, he leans out and yells, but suddenly an ax is embedded in the top of his balding head (well, in a VERY FAKE DUMMY’S balding head, that’s more accurate) and the drugs on the console are swiped away, before the camera zooms in on Billy’s eyes widening in much surprise.

Crystal Lake Body Count: 1 (+52)

Back in the diner, the tabby cat is inspecting a selection of stacked saucepans that are on the floor. (??) Lana picks it up, berating it for scaring her after she feeds and cares for it, hustling over to throw it outside for the night. She turns off the diner lights, drops the cat on the ground (GOD SPEED, TABBY CAT, MAY YOU SURVIVE THIS FILM) and turns around to lock the door.

Jogging over to the car, she can’t find Billy, he’s not there anymore. (I wonder why.) Even though the driver’s side door is open, Lana just gets in the passenger side and sits down, closing that door and thinks NOTHING OF ANYTHING.

She yells for Billy, complaining it’s cold, before checking her makeup and hair in the mirror. Nice. She complains even more before noticing the mess of cocaine on the driver’s side floor.

Pointless Foreshadowing For Fun and Profit: 1 (+19)

Instead of being concerned, Lana leans down and tells Billy he’s wasting a lot of money, sampling the cocaine before she sees a pair of boots outside the open driver’s side door, a blooded ax, and a pool of blood on the concrete. Uh oh, guys, I think Lana’s in trouble.

Bolting across the bench seat, Lana temporarily forgets how to open a car door, but manages to get out of the car, just as the killer slams the ax into her torso. Lana falls down, dead, the ax not even falling out. (Okay, gravity fail, but whatever.)

Crystal Lake Body Count: 1 (+53)

All these weird fades-to-black make this feel like a shitty made-for-TV movie. I’m serious.

It’s day again, because if anything, the Friday the 13th franchise has no concept of time and its passage. Tommy is staring out his bedroom window at chickens pecking around in the yard and, TBH, this wandering around shirtless thing is kind of distracting. (GET IT TOGETHER, VIRGIN.)

A male and female patient run through the gathered chickens, the girl screaming as I guess the dude tickles her or something. I dunno. But of course, as soon as Tommy looks again, THERE’S JASON VOORHEES, STANDING IN THE MIDDLE OF THE CHICKENS, WITH A BLOODIED AX.

Tommy immediately gets upset, balling his fists up and pressing them into his eyes, an obnoxious heartbeat sound effect mixed in with the screeching violins, and as soon as he uncovers his eyes, Jason is gone.

This is getting old, people.

SMASH CUT to the police department, where some dude is screaming and swearing at the sheriff. Somehow the aforementioned deputy is sleeping through the guy’s rant. Uh huh. Apparently because it’s a small town, it’s not allowed to have multiple murders. Sure.

The sheriff, casually smoking a cigar, admits he knows who’s responsible: Jason Voorhees.

The dude, who happens to be the mayor, I should have known from the screaming and the cheap suit, calls the sheriff crazy and says Jason was cremated. This gets the sheriff up off his butt, asking if the mayor knows that for certain. The mayor dumps an ashtray onto the floor, calling that Voorhees’ remains and okay, so yeah, dude was not witness to the cremation of the serial killer’s body.

The mayor threatens the sheriff Tucker’s job and insists the cops bring in a live suspect. The mayor leaves and the sheriff throws the glass ashtray, which shatters. DUH-DUH-DUH!

Geez, I complained about the fades to black, now everything is SMASH CUT. Back at Pinewood, the girl who was caught getting her freak on in the Hubbard’s woods is folding laundry and wearing what would not be appropriate attire in any legit workplace. From behind a sheet on the line, Eddie, who was caught with her, grabs her and picks her up, scaring her. When she gets free, she slaps his arm and keeps giggling and of course Eddie is all, “you loved it”.

Oh, my head. More reason to hate this fucking film.

Basically Eddie coerces her into fucking in the woods again. She even brings along the sheet she was folding as she chases Eddie. He picks her up and swings her around as she breathlessly giggles and screeches, throws dirt at her, and makes weird sound effects ala the Three Stooges as she chases him to a clearing.

Okay, the director wasn’t lying. He really did film a fucking porno in the woods.

Eddie and the bimbo take a few seconds to spread the sheet on the leaf-strewn ground before having a bit of a make out. Both on their knees, Eddie produces a joint from his shirt pocket.

AND THEN WE FLIP TO THE CRAPPY KILLER’S POV FROM BEHIND SOME BUSHES. So help me God, I can’t even.

Pointless Foreshadowing For Fun and Profit: 1 (+20)

Killer watches the lovebirds take a few tokes before we go back to being up in their personal space (ugh) and the clothes are starting to come off now when we switch BACK to the crappy POV but what’s this?? AN ARM? AN ARM REACHING OUT AND MOVING THE VINES BACKS TO SEE BETTER??

Oh, it’s the weird stranger who showed up looking for food on Ethel’s porch the other day (?) Now he’s getting a free sex show. Great. He’s enjoying it and Eddie and the bimbo are rolling around now, but I guess the stranger decides to move (?) but… oops.

Stranger looks up in surprise as a machete is slammed into his gut. That’s gotta hurt.

Crystal Lake Body Count: 1 (+54)

The stranger falls down dead, a crow lands on a branch and caws, and suddenly Eddie’s moving the bimbo off him, yammering about how he’s got to go wash up. WAIT. THAT WASN’T EVEN HALF A MINUTE. THAT WASN’T EVEN 30 SECONDS. ARE YOU KIDDING ME??

Eddie pulls on his pants and runs off, the bimbo insisting he hurry back. Eddie disappears and she lays back on the sheet, and gratuitous bare boobs abound. Naked, lying around in the splendor of nature, bimbo takes it all in.

I mean, it’s not like she got anything out of fucking Eddie, literally, that was a pathetic and quick performance.

There’s a long distance shot of bimbo laying naked on the sheet, before it closes in on her face again. She opens her eyes and screams, just as a pair of old school hedge trimmers smash down into her. The killer manages to push the handles together, implying something has been cut. We can see the blood on the blades but that’s about it.

Crystal Lake Body Count: 1 (+55)

Hm.

I mean, I can’t complain. The film is picking up in speed as much as it is in body count.

Over by the pond (?) Eddie is throwing rocks into the water after his “bath” before heading back up to where he left the bimbo. Picking up a branch, he swats at the leaves in play as he makes his way back to the clearing.

We all can see the bimbo laying on her side, buck naked, like she’s taking a nap. Eddie turns her over and gets a real big surprise. The blades were sunk into her eye sockets and the bridge of her nose cut, so it’s pretty gruesome. On par with Joey’s uncovered corpse, really.

Eddie bolts backwards in shock, which is a terrible idea, because he slams into a tree. Back against it, someone throws a leather belt around his eyes, which he scrabbles to get off himself but it’s too late. Said killer is twisting a large branch through the rings (maybe it’s part of a harness? I dunno) and pulling the leather band tight.

We see the hands struggle to twist the leather tighter and tighter, Eddie screaming, as the band cuts into his face. The fake blood shows up, Eddie stops screaming, and the leather band snaps under the tension.

Crystal Lake Body Count: 1 (+56)

I feel like this is really rather pointless. I know it’s establishing the “return” of Jason, however this turns out, but c’mon.

SMASH CUT to Reggie yelling about getting the show on the road. Apparently Pam agreed to take him to town. George is telling him to be nice, since Pam is doing them both a favor by agreeing to this.

Pam is busy reassuring Matthew that Tina (aka bimbo) and Eddie will show up asap when they get hungry and to stop worrying. Matthew is just mad, since they were told to stop running off to fuck in the woods.

They both notice Tommy standing under a tree, his back to the group. Matthew suggests Pam take Tommy with them, to get him out of the chaos. Yeah, sure. Great idea.

Pointless Foreshadowing For Fun and Profit: 1 (+21)

Tommy doesn’t respond to the suggestions, so Matthew sends Pam over to “see what she can do”. Lord. It doesn’t take a hell of a lot of convincing, because this is a movie, and soon Tommy is climbing into the truck with Reggie and Pam.

Everyone waves the trio off and soon they’re driving along the dark back road towards town. They come to a neon sign denoting the site of a trailer park. Pam pulls the truck into the dirt lot, which is full of cars, and barely has time to get the door open before Reggie is out of the cab and off like a shot! Geez, kid, manners much?

Pam invites Tommy to join them but he insists on staying with the truck. Reggie is pounding on the door one of those quintessential 70s/80s vans, which of course is where his brother lives. Its interior is covered in black light posters and plastic skeletons and his brother Demon (at first I thought I misheard that, but nope, Reggie’s brother is called Demon) is a total punk.

The brothers are super ecstatic to see one another, Demon even offering Reggie an enchilada to eat. I fear for them, knowing this is a horror movie. Reggie turns and shouts, “freakin’ a, where’d you get that!?” and of course it’s a classy looking broad laying back on satin pillows, smoking. Lord help me.

Reggie, God bless him, immediately flirts with Anita. Then he insists on introducing them to Pam, who he calls his girlfriend. Sure, kid.

Meanwhile, back at the truck, Tommy is drawn to the buzzing neon sign, just like a moth. This bodes well.

Pointless Foreshadowing For Fun and Profit: 1 (+22)

Back in the kick ass party van, Demon is offering Pam all kinds of food, which she politely declines, before fake offering Reggie a beer. Ha ha, kid, you too young! Then he gives Reggie one of his “bad ass” rings, which stuns Reggie. Gotta admit, it’s nice to see a loving pair of brothers.

Tommy has now wandered way closer to the neon sign, which is still buzzing and occasionally blinking. Great. He gets right up under the sign and the stupid heart beat sound effect starts up, just as Tommy starts to freak out again.

His face is half illuminated by a different light and there’s a buzzing sound of a motorbike. It’s just Junior, who rides up and laughs at Tommy’s reaction to being blinded by the headlight. Tommy isn’t amused at Junior laughing at him, and then Junior asks if Tommy is “dumb or something”.

Pointless Foreshadowing For Fun and Profit: 1 (+23)

That’s when Junior sees the old pick up truck and immediately yells “you’re a crazy from the looney bin!” Tommy doesn’t react, even when Junior threatens that his mother will chop Tommy up into “itty bitty pieces” and starts pushing him. Yeah, that’s going to end well.

Junior can’t get a rise out of Tommy, so he grabs him by the shirt and winds up to punch him but Tommy ducks and punches Junior several times, putting him on the ground. Junior recovers enough to try and choke Tommy, but a few more punches, a couple of kidney punches, and a kick to the mid-section put Junior back on the ground.

They continue to fight and Tommy is screaming and just about to wallop Junior good, when Pam comes flying out of the van, screaming his name. He stops and looks at her, comes to his senses again, and lets Junior fall to the dirt. Screaming, Tommy races away and Pam calls to Reggie that they have to leave.

Demon hugs his little brother goodbye, telling him to “stay safe” (me: “HA HAHAHAHA SURE!”) as Reggie climbs into the truck. Anita and Demon watch them leave, Anita offering her joint to Demon. Charming.

Suddenly Demon cries out in pain, blaming the “damn enchiladas” and doing a shuffle run across the parking lot to the outhouse. Great. I didn’t think it possible, but we have TWO CRAPS IN THE WOODS IN ONE FILM!!

Friday the 13th A New Beginning (1985)

I literally do not know how to feel about this milestone.

Demon makes it in time and does not crap his leather pants, so good job? Only, wait, what the hell?? WHY DO WE NEED TO BE IN THE OUTHOUSE WITH HIM, WHILE HE GROANS IN RELIEF? THIS IS NOT JACKASS!

[Wing: Who knew we would need a running shit in the woods counter? WHO KNEW?]

The outhouse, made of corrugated metal, begins to shake. Um… ocupado!

Demon looks scared and yells for whoever is shaking the outside to stop. Sure enough, it’s Anita, playing a joke on him. Lord help me. Demon hears her giggling and informs her, “you’re going to get it, bitch!”

Pointless Foreshadowing For Fun and Profit: 1 (+24)

There is a short convo about how Demon will feel better after his crap, and he admits the outhouse is kind of terrifying, to which Anita rejoins that he better watch out for the snake that’s going to crawl up from the cesspool and bite his ass.

Pointless Foreshadowing For Fun and Profit: 1 (+25)

I have many fears on where this is going to go and I don’t want to watch.

What the fuck, now they’re singing “hey baby” to each other, while Demon is still crapping? Yeah, because that’s what normal couples do. Sure. (Yeah, I know over time you eventually get over the “gross” stuff because you kind of have to but I AM NOT EVER SINGING TO SOMEONE OR WANT TO BE SUNG TO WHILE I’M TAKING A CRAP.)

Demon is still singing and there’s a soft gasp outside, which is obvs Anita. He stops and calls for her but gets no reply. A glimpse outside by the camera reveals she’s gone.

Pointless Foreshadowing For Fun and Profit: 1 (+26)

The outhouse begins to shake once more and Demon gets real mad and threatens Anita again, as he zips up his pants. Trying to open the door, he finds Anita’s body blocking the way, her throat slashed.

Crystal Lake Body Count: 1 (+57)

Anita, we hardly aknew you.

Demon panics and hides in the outside, but a metal pole is rammed through the metal sheeting, sending him scurrying to the other side. Yeah, dude, you’re trapped. The metal pole, which is sharped to a point, comes through the corrugated metal once more and pierces Demon’s thigh.

Instead of… well, I don’t know that there’s anything he could do to escape, but instead of doing anything, Demon moves to stand right in front of where the metal pole is coming through. So, of course, it pierces right through his torso, impaling him. Demon has time to look down at it before he dies.

Crystal Lake Body Count: 1 (+58)

These are some of the most unimaginative deaths in this franchise.

Pam and Reggie have returned to Pinewood, where the others rush out to tell Pam that Matthew and George have taken off. (??) Tina and Eddie still haven’t returned (well, DUH, they’re DEAD.)

Telling Jake, the stutterer, to calm down, Pam asks were Matthew went. Apparently to go look for Tina and Eddie. Jake wants to know where Tommy is and Reggie wants his grandpa. Geez, people.

Ordering everyone back in the house, Pam is off to find the rest. Sure, go it alone, honey. You have a better chance of surviving this, if we go by previous installments. Jake is left in charge and Reggie is ordered to bed.

Pointless Foreshadowing For Fun and Profit: 1 (+27)

Over at the Hubbard place, Junior comes screaming in on his motorbike, while Ethel screams at him that she’s making his dinner. Junior is so upset that Tommy beat the shit out of him, his bloody nose running as he rides circles around the house.

Ethel spits in the stew as she throws other odds and ends into the pot, while Junior is still screaming. Putting the “fun” in “dysfunctional” here. Junior stops long enough to demand Ethel chop up everyone living at Pinewood. Great.

Just as Junior is making another circuit, screaming at the top of his lungs, a huge cleaver is swung out from behind a tree. Junior’s severed head falls into the dirt and leaves (looking fake as fuck) as the motorbike’s engine cuts off and it crashes.

Crystal Lake Body Count: 1 (+59)

We’ve abandoned all hope of realism here. Okay.

We hear the creak of a door, and Ethel snorts, calling her son a “fuckwad”. Charming. She continues to dump stuff in the stew pot and stir with her hand, while we get some more stupid killer POV action. Ethel demands Junior talk, but suddenly the same cleaver comes through the kitchen window and into Ethel’s face. She squeezes the tomato she was holding as she falls face-first into the stew pot.

Crystal Lake Body Count: 1 (+60)

THAT WAS A WEAK-ASS ENDING FOR SUCH A VILE WOMAN. I DEMANDED MORE VIOLENCE. DAMN IT.

Pam’s driving slowly along the road, searching the best she can in the darkness (read: not very well at all) for the missing staff and patients. The truck eventually stalls out. Failing to restart it, Pam takes the keys and gets out, walking back the way she came. Overhead, ominous thunder roars.

Back in the house at Pinewood, Jake and Robin are sitting on the couch watching a black and white film, eating popcorn. I guess it’s supposed to be scary (I can’t quite figure out what film it is? Google isn’t helpful.) Jake is too busy trying to put moves on Robin, since they’ve both been in the program for eight months (so? fucking? what?) but Robin isn’t interested.

Robin gets scared by something in the film and Jake makes the most creepy facial expression ever and informs her he likes her, a lot. They are most certainly not on the same page, because as soon as Jake informs Robin he wants to “make love” she starts laughing at him. Bad idea.

Pointless Foreshadowing For Fun and Profit: 1 (+28)

Jake storms off and goes upstairs to cry, helpful thunder and lightning reminding us this is a horror film. He hears loud funky music coming from Violet’s room, knocks and the door but fails to get her attention, so Jake enters.

Violet has a decidedly 1980s cool kid room, which means the walls are plastered with photos from magazines and posters. Jake wants to talk to her but Violet can’t really hear him over the loud music so Jake just leaves.

And promptly walks into the killer, who has a raised cleaver in hand, which he dispatches Jake with.

Crystal Lake Body Count: 1 (+61)

At this point, we barely know these characters, so their deaths aren’t meaningful what so ever. I guess one blessing is a lot of the murders are kind of off-screen in a fashion? I’m not sure how to explain it. It’s not as gruesome as previous installments but I’m wondering if that’s not due to the fact the writers are trying to make us guess whether Jason is really returned or if Tommy is the murderer. [Wing: I think that’s probably it, as well as possibly changing standards about what different ratings can get away with? Mostly, though, it’s all just bad.]

THERE. I SAID IT. THIS IS POTENTIALLY ALL TOMMY’S DOING.

The film has ended and Robin turns off the TV, waking Reggie who is asleep on the couch. That poor kid. I hope you survive this. Because he won’t get up and literally rolls over to ignore her, Robin tucks a blanket around him and turns off the light, before heading upstairs.

In her room, she ditches her slippers and the wrap around robe she’s wearing, then goes and stands in front of the shutters half naked. Wow, I think this installment has had the most bare boobs.

Standing in front of the mirror, Robin practices apologizing to Jake and gives herself a dressing down for being rude. A flash of lightning and thunder scares her into turning off the light and crawling into the bed (the top bunk, of course) and settling into sleep.

It isn’t a few seconds before she realizes she’s in bed with Jake’s open-eyed, bloodied-faced corpse, making her scream, but it’s too late. The killer reaches up from under/behind the bed and chokes her, pinning her to the mattress. A machete (that looks like it’s made out of plastic and covered in tin foil) slams up from underneath, dispatching Robin.

Crystal Lake Body Count: 1 (+62)

Yawn.

I’m not even amused in a “this is so bad it’s funny” way at this point. This is just the worst and most unimaginative entry ever.

Over in her room, Violet is practicing some weird choreography but she’s got some sweet crimped hair, so I’ll give her a pass. (I miss my crimping iron.) The camera closes in tight on a bloodied hand opening her door, then a pair of boots standing in her room. (Okay, I had to check, because I do love me some New Wave. The song is His Eyes by Pseudo Echo.)

A noise draws her attention but the killer is gone, the room seemingly empty. (Hello, there’s a goddamn closet right there. Plus the wall juts out weirdly, so someone could easily hide.) Violet ignores it and goes back to her mechanical, robotic dance moves (??) while the killer steps out from behind the short wall. Ugh.

Violet turns around and gets grabbed by the throat, pushed against the wall, and lifted off the ground. We see her get stabbed in the torso and hear her fall to the ground.

Crystal Lake Body Count: 1 (+63)

Weaksauce.

Downstairs, Reggie’s sleep is disturbed and he wakes up, seemingly from the noise upstairs? (WHAT NOISE??) He actually asks what “those nuts” are up to. I??? CAN’T???

Reggie heads upstairs and immediately knocks on Tommy’s door, calling out to him. He opens the door, the room is pitch black, but a burst of lightning illuminates the bloodied (that blood is too bright red, snort) corpses of Jake, Robin, and Violet heaped haphazardly onto the bed.

Amazingly, Reggie does not scream. He just slowly backs up out of the room, into the hallway. A hand slams down on his shoulder. Pam, soaked from her walk home through the storm, is yelling at Reggie, asking him what’s the matter. (The over acting hurts me.) Reggie is petrified and can’t seem to speak, until he manages “In Tommy’s room!”

Stupidly, Pam leaves Reggie alone in the hall and goes into Tommy’s room.

Pointless Foreshadowing For Fun and Profit: 1 (+29)

I mean, is it really foreshadowing, since we know the stack ‘o corpses is in there? Whatever.

Of course as soon as she sees the bodies, Pam screams. She slowly backs out, horrified. Well, duh. Grabbing Reggie’s arm, she drags him as they bolt downstairs. But once they’re there, Reggie trips and goes down, hurting his leg. Pam tries to drag him to his feet, but too late.

A hockey-mask wearing killer bursts through the door, making it explode into wood shards. Sure. In his hand is the fake pseudo-machete, covered in blood. Pam screams her head off but Reggie just stares.

The killer (I am not identifying him as Jason; I don’t buy it yet.) doesn’t do anything so Pam drags Reggie to his feet and they flee through the house. It takes some force but Pam yanks open the door and the two run out into the pouring rain.

Into the woods, without a flash light, they run through bushes and trees until they come upon the old style ambulance parked at the side of the road. Pam opens the door and the blonde asshole falls halfway out, his throat slashed, the gum he’s been chewing stuck between his lips.

Crystal Lake Body Count: 1 (+64)
Pointless Foreshadowing For Fun and Profit: 1 (+30)

Hm, where’s the other attendant? I wonder.

Magically, the hockey-masked killer pops up just as Pam screeches her head off. Sure. Why not. Reggie finally screams (dude) and bolts back into the woods, well ahead of Pam.

The killer takes after them, slow and steady, as Pam screams for Reggie, having lost sight of him. She trips over something and goes down. Reggie trips too, calling for Pam, who’s back on her feet and screaming for Reggie.

And then Pam stumbles into Matthew’s body, his throat slashed and his head nailed to… is that a rock or a tree? I CAN’T TELL.

Crystal Lake Body Count: 1 (+65)

Ugh. So much screaming.

Because we really need a close up shot of the railroad spike embedded in his skull, illuminated by lightning. Pam is losing her ever loving mind, screaming so loudly. She takes off, sobbing, back to the house and goes inside. Then scream cries about Reggie. WHAT THE FUCK.

Making her way through the dark house, a body is thrown through the windows, shattering glass and splintering wood everything.

Crystal Lake Body Count: 1 (+66)

Poor George. You deserved better. Also, why did the killer gouge out your eyeballs? So many destroyed eyeballs in this film. [Wing: I suppose this was the “in” thing for horror at the time. Do anything too often in a horror story especially and it loses its impact.]

Pam flees back outside into the storm (make up your goddamn mind, woman) and we’re shown the killer is steadily right on her heels. She goes down into the mud, scrambling to keep distance, but she’s unable to get up and starts crawling towards the barn.

Eventually she lands on her back, screaming her head off, as the killer stands over her, the cheap-o machete raised…

…and THE FRONT-END LOADER BURSTS OUT OF THE BARN, REGGIE AT THE WHEEL!

The killer, pretending he’s blinded by the lights (no, just no) is caught off guard long enough for Pam to slip away. Reggie, driving at top speed, hell bent for leather, crashes the bucket/scoop into the killer and sends him flying!

Okay this part is pretty cool.

Killer lands on his back, struggles a moment, then seemingly dies from internal injuries.

Crystal Lake Body Count: 1 (+67)

Sure. Right. This is when you DRIVE OVER THE GODDAMN BODY A FEW TIMES TO MAKE DAMN CERTAIN HE’S DEAD, REGGIE. But no. Nope. Reggie parks the loader and gets off, walking over to help Pam off the ground.

Pam assures him it’s okay, everything is okay (LIES) and gives him a big kiss on the cheek. There’s a good 15 minutes left of this film. A LOT CAN HAPPEN IN 15 MINUTES.

We get a good shot of the killer’s body, lit up by the lightning, and the head appears to be bald/shaved under the hockey mask. Sure enough, Pam and Reggie walk right over to stand RIGHT NEXT TO IT and the killer grabs Reggie’s calf. Both scream and Reggie’s caught in a tug of war.

Pam manages to kick the killer’s masked face a couple of times, hard enough that he lets go of Reggie. They run away, into the barn, as the killer grabs the machete and gets to his feet. Ugh. SEE WHY MAKING SURE THE KILLER IS ABSOLUTELY DEAD IS IMPORTANT??

He’s dead! He’s dead! HE’S FUCKING DEAD! … oh wait, he survived: 1 (+1)
Crystal Lake Body Count: -1 (+66)

As the killer struggles to his feet, we indeed see he is gravely wounded, what with the giant bleeding indent across his torso. Okay. This must mean he’s on the clock if he wants to finish the final two before his time runs out?

Pointless Foreshadowing For Fun and Profit: 1 (+31)

(*has a strange thought about a mashup of Friday the 13th and 24 for a few seconds*)

[Wing: Someone should write that…]

Killer heads into the barn, standing in the ruined doorway, before casually strolling in. A noise draws his attention. Someone’s in the tack room. We find out Reggie is in the hay loft above, watching.

Open the door, the killer is greeted by Pam, who’s wielding a chainsaw! Wow! That’s cool! We suddenly went into Texas Chainsaw Massacre territory!

Somehow (??) the killer fends off the buzzing chainsaw blade with the cheap ass machete. Sure. Reggie cheers Pam on, like this is the bloody Coliseum in Rome, and it’s a minute before Pam scores a hit. The chainsaw teeth tear into the killer’s upper left arm, sending him reeling back into a hay bale.

Um, watching this, the goddamn chainsaw has no chain, no teeth, and the actress is just shaking it like it’s supposedly working. WTF. Of course, just as she’s nearly on top of the killer, it goes dead.

Oops.

Frantically trying to restart it, Pam has to back up as the killer gets up and stalks towards her. Reggie looks worried. Unable to be successful, Pam literally throws the dead chainsaw at the killer and bolts towards the hayloft ladder!

AND IN WALKS TOMMY.

Reggie screams for him, which stops the killer from chasing Pam. He turns around and faces the soaking-wet survivor of the previous installment. The killer slowly walks towards Tommy while Pam implores him to run away (??) but Tommy stands there, assessing his enemy.

Pointless Foreshadowing For Fun and Profit: 1 (+32)

I think this time it’s a little different, boyo.

While Pam and Reggie plead with Tommy to get out of there, Tommy calls the killer “Jason?” and gets no response. And that dumb ass heart beat sound effect is back. Ugh. Plus more audio clips of Tommy as a child, killing Jason Voorhees.

Remember all the people who’ve tried to use words and psychology to get through to Jason? THEY ALL DIED.

The killer slashes Tommy across the chest, sending him reeling. Tommy falls into a pile of hay, looking terrified, as the killer prepares to drive the machete into him. Somehow (because it’s a movie) Tommy is able to get that huge folding knife out and open, driving it into the killer’s inner thigh.

The killer falls down, struggling to pull the knife free, as Tommy begins to climb up to the hayloft. The killer gets the knife out and easily follows him. And how many times have we ended up in fucking haylofts in this series? I’ve lost track.

Now in the hayloft, the killer kicks over Tommy’s body. I’m not calling it, because I can see his hand is hidden behind/under his back.

Pointless Foreshadowing For Fun and Profit: 1 (+33)

The killer, of course, buys the ruse. He stands there, looking for Pam and Reggie. They have seemingly disappeared and the upper doors are open, revealing the rain pouring down outside. Slowly, the killer walks along before catching sight of Reggie, who ducks down behind a hay bale too slow.

Reggie stands up and tries to face the killer, a wooden beam between them. The killer hacks at the beam, making Reggie jump, but he’s so far uninjured. Reggie’s distraction works long enough for Pam to slam… well it’s wood but what it is, I’m not sure… into the killer’s back, drawing his attention. She keeps swinging and hitting the killer, but it’s literally not enough.

Pointless Foreshadowing For Fun and Profit: 1 (+34)

…or is it?

Pam loses her weapon and finds herself trapped between the killer and the open hayloft doors. The camera zooms in to show… is that a fucking bed of nails?! Well, whatever, there’s a ton of pointy, probably rusty, nails in wood awaiting her on the ground when she falls.

Pointless Foreshadowing For Fun and Profit: 1 (+35)

Pam dodges left and right until the killer is closer to the doors. Just as he raises the machete, Reggie makes a flying leap like he’s Jackie fucking Chan and slams into the killer, knocking him out and into that pile of wicked spikes.

Grabbing the boy in a hug, Pam and Reggie inch slowly over to the edge to look outside and make sure the killer is impaled.

Pointless Foreshadowing For Fun and Profit: 1 (+36)

Of course he’s fucking not, he leaps up and grabs Reggie’s ankle, trying to pull himself up (how he’s even hanging onto the barn, I’m not remotely sure, this is impossible.) Once again, Reggie is caught in a bodily tug of war between Pam and the killer.

Tommy finally comes to (SEE I TOLD YOU) and picks up the machete (?? how did it get there??) and walks over and slams the blade into the killer’s arm, severing it. (Wait, you won’t even show the arm being severed? WHAT THE HELL IS WITH THIS FILM?)

The killer’s hockey mask comes flying off as he makes the short fall to the ground, landing on the spikes hard, like a fake body totally would.

Crystal Lake Body Count: 1 (+67)

Tommy, Pam, and Reggie stare down at their handiwork, as we see the killer’s face uncovered.

WHY IT’S NONE OTHER THAN ROY, THE QUEASY AMBULANCE ATTENDANT, WEARING A WHOLE HEAD COVERING MASK.

What. the. FUCK.

Smash cut to a nurse filing her long, red Lee’s Press-On nails as she’s working behind a desk at the hospital. Okay. She seems quite put out when she looks over to watch Pam cradling Reggie. Pam looks exhausted and Reggie is stone cold asleep.

In walks sheriff Tucker and deputy. At least he inquires how Pam is doing. She doesn’t answer, though. That would be the shock, you know. Sheriff Tucker shows her the wallet they found on Roy. Firstly, WHO THE FUCK KEEPS A PHOTO OF THEMSELVES IN THEIR WALLET? Secondly, look, it’s Joey!

Pointless Foreshadowing For Fun and Profit: 1 (+37)

Joey was apparently Roy’s biological son. Explains Roy’s reaction to his murder. Although he never revealed publicly that Joey was his son, the sheriff also remarks that Roy was “a real loner” (ugh) and “never talked much” (double ugh.)

Of course the sheriff theorizes that when Roy saw Joey hacked to pieces, that must be what set him off. He shows Pam that Roy kept newspaper clippings about Jason Voorhees and murder sprees in his wallet.

This… this is some of the sloppiest writing ever. What bullshit.

Pam looks about as nonplussed as I do right now.

Later, Pam walks down the hall and quietly enters a hospital room where, sure enough, Tommy is alive and hooked up to machines. A nurse is sitting quietly in a chair, reading a book, as it continues to pour down buckets outside THAT GIANT ASS WINDOW RIGHT THERE.

Pointless Foreshadowing For Fun and Profit: 1 (+38)

Now I have fucking visceral reactions to windows. Thanks, Friday the 13th!

The nurse nods that she can approach Tommy’s bedside and the charming, sweet music is making me freak out, because I can almost guess what’s coming. Pam quietly calls Tommy’s name and he wakes up enough to look at her. She gives him a smile, which he returns, before he throws back the sheets and reveals a huge machete in his hand.

Which he promptly stabs Pam with before laughing maniacally.

Pointless Foreshadowing For Fun and Profit: 1 (+39)

Tommy wakes up, covered in sweat and breathing hard (and I recover myself because that wasn’t what I expected, god damn it!) and the room is dark. It’s also still raining cats and dogs outside as Tommy slowly calms down and lies back on the bed.

Opening his eyes, Tommy inhales deeply as he sees Jason Voorhees standing in the room (this is the red triangle mask, so I’m confident that’s who it is; Roy wore the blue triangle mask.) Plus the fact that there’s a giant ax-shaped gouge in Jason’s head and there’s blood oozing out from under the mask.

Tommy just stares at Jason until the mirage fades away, disappearing. Pulling the IV from his arm, Tommy gets out of the hospital bed and walks to the dresser, opening the drawer and DUH DUH DUH!

THE HOCKEY MASK WITH THE BLUE TRIANGLES IS INSIDE!

Pointless Foreshadowing For Fun and Profit: 1 (+40)

Tommy picks it up and holds it, looking at it as he hears footsteps approaching the room. We switch to Pam, making the same entrance as she made in Tommy’s dream, but before she can open there door there’s a ginormous crash!

Pam opens the door and finds the window smashed as though someone has leapt through it. (SEE! I KNEW IT WAS COMING.) Pam, stunned, stares at the broken window…

…as Tommy, wearing the hockey mask, CLOSES THE DOOR BEHIND HER.

He raises a chef’s knife as the camera zooms in on one of the mask’s eye holes AND THE SCREEN GOES BLACK.

… are you fucking kidding me?

Credits roll. The end.

Final Thoughts:

Friday the 13th A New Beginning (1985)

What the hell did I just watch?

I… uhhhhhgggggghhhh.

Okay, clearly this was a (terrible) attempt to revive, nay, resurrect a franchise that had seemingly ended in the previous installment. I get that. That’s fine. It happens all the damn time, especially nowadays with reboots and “re-imaginings” and “20-years-too-late” sequels (looking directly at you, Lost Boys: The Tribe!)

It was (and this is me being generous) clever to pull it through via Tommy, the lone survivor, who was a child who had to kill Jason to survive. That’s a lot of potential there for a story. We really didn’t get a chance with the few other survivors, or only saw them get killed later on.

How it was handled? Well, it wasn’t, it was done poorly. You expect the viewer to believe Tommy is so psychologically damaged by this self-defense murder that he’d basically become possessed by Jason’s spirit (without even SAYING so, just oddly implying it and not even in a way that explains what the writers were going for) and pick up where Jason left off? Even though we’re far beyond Camp Crystal Lake now and the real reasons/motives Jason had for murder?

No. Just no. Bad writers, no cookie!

It is insulting to the viewer to tie this tiny, poorly formed story line into a much larger and totally sloppy second story about a mental halfway house filled with barely sketched out secondary and background characters (who we never understand anything about beyond some shitty stereotypes) then throw in a child character who is as strong willed as Tommy’s character was in the previous film (and is also used for comedic relief) and expect us to be amazed and/or care when the majority die. And they die so pointlessly! And there’s that weird shit with the killer going after eyeballs! What was that all about??

The previous installments, the deaths at least had… I don’t know, more story? More of a point? A New Beginning just wanted a body count (and it racked up quite a few) but because it was all enfolded in a red herring secondary cover story (dude is mad his biological son was hacked to death in a mental halfway home but also never acknowledged said son publicly, but still decided to get revenge on son’s behalf? what?) it cheapens the whole plot point of Tommy becoming the killer.

I am greatly disappointed.

I’ve never been shy about how movies involving mental health always piss me off and the Friday the 13th franchise has never handled mental health with any tact. We know this. Remember Ralph? Yeah. It also didn’t help that in the middle of recapping, a string of high profile suicides happened, one in particular affecting me quite deeply. Worst timing ever to be recapping a horror film involving mental health but that’s life for you.

Do I consider A New Beginning a successful “reboot” of the series? Nope. It’s a shitty footnote in the series, as far as I’m concerned. It moved the plot forward and allowed Jason Voorhees to “return” (if that’s even the case; we’ll find out in the next recap!) but that’s about it.

Oh, and I’m not adding Pam to the body count. Although it’s implied that Tommy/Jason kills her, it’s not shown and there’s not enough evidence to prove such.

Okay, I’m stopping now. Until next time, where I hope the story is better and the writers do their goddamn job and maybe I’ll enjoy it (wouldn’t that be hilarious?), STAY AWAY FROM ALL LARGE WINDOWS AND KEEP THOSE CURTAINS SHUT! See you in September for Friday the 13th Part VI: Jason Lives, when Let’s Do It!: A Virgin Does Horror! returns!

[Wing: Oh thank god, I was worried this might have put you off the series FOREVER. I’m hoping it can only go uphill from here. Also: I agree with everything you’ve said up there.]

Final Counters

Crystal Lake Body Count: 67
Pointless Foreshadowing For Fun and Profit: 40
Mental health: with tact and sensitivity: 2
He’s dead! He’s dead! HE’S FUCKING DEAD! … oh wait, he survived: 1

 

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Poppin' my horror movie cherry one cult classic slasher film at a time. Let's do it!

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