Friday the 13th: Top 13 WTF Moments

As much as I love it, the Friday the 13th series isn’t bound by strong continuity. Jason’s look fluctuates like the weather, people flock to Camp Crystal Lake in droves, and WHY does the camp look like it’s in a different state in every film (don’t answer that)?

That’s not to begin trying to piece together a strict sense of passing time through the Paramount-era films. Ever try? If you date everything out the best you can do is place Friday the 13th Part VII: The New Blood in the year 1999 or 2000. This is amazingly problematic to say the least considering Kevin Blair runs around in denim the entire movie.

Along the way there have been many WTF moments. Characters disappear, others reappear. People stumble in out of nowhere just to be killed and then forgotten. Having different creative teams behind each production often results in hilarious lapses in logic that cannot easily be explained, while some stylistic choices are just bizarre. There’s obviously no way for a “top ten” (or top 13, as it were) to cover them all, but this list references some obvious choices along with a few genuine oddities. Their common ground? All of them make the viewer say, ”what the fuck?”

Friday the 13th:  Top 13 WTF Moments

13. Jason’s overnight growth spurt between 2 & 3.

We’ll start with an easy one. It’s such a puzzling choice because, in the span of one night, Mr. Voorhees springs up several inches, sheds his ginger locks and decides his backwoods-y wardrobe has gone out of style. Or something.

So yeah, from this:

Friday the 13th:  Top 13 WTF Moments
To this:

Friday the 13th:  Top 13 WTF Moments
How? Why? Doesn’t matter. One assumes director Steve Miner wanted a bigger, more imposing presence for his second sequel, but hey, at least they cared enough to keep him in his overalls for the flashback attack on Chris later in the movie (more on that later).

12. Yeah, I’m afraid of water now… (Freddy vs. Jason)

There’s a lot wrong with Freddy vs. Jason, but the biggest WTF moment comes when it’s revealed that Jason is deathly afraid of water. Never mind all of Jason’s prior traipses into Crystal Lake, FvJ stages an 11th hour retcon in a desperate attempt to make the character more “sympathetic.” It sucks.

Friday the 13th:  Top 13 WTF Moments
But Jason didn’t have these issues while waiting for a late-night skinny dipper in The Final Chapter, nor did he mind wading into fiery waters for a final confrontation with nemesis Tommy Jarvis in Jason Lives. He spent a decade chained to a rock at the bottom of the lake and that didn’t seem to bother him either! Maybe he’s just timid in his undead age? It had to be something other than ”the filmmakers simply didn’t give a shit”, right?

11. Zombie Dad (Friday the 13th Part VII: The New Blood)

Apparently Jason wasn’t the only corpse rotting beneath Crystal Lake. John Shepard, the raging alcoholic who goes to his watery grave in the prologue, apparently was left to rot after the collapsed dock was cleared away and then rebuit.

It’s unlikely that his corpse wasn’t tangled up in the debris, though. And how deep is Crystal Lake where the body couldn’t have been recovered (this is true for Jason, too)? Did the police even LOOK? Knowing their success rate, it’s probably safe to assume they did not (more on them later).

Of course, this doesn’t excuse how lame Shepard looks when he comes flying out of the water just in time to drag Jason back down into the raging shallows of Crystal Lake. I know director John Carl Buechler fought for a cooler-looking Shep zombie, but the idea was nixed by one of the producers.

Well, producer, this is the impression your film leaves:

Friday the 13th:  Top 13 WTF Moments

MORE WTF moments on the NEXT page!

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Matt Serafini

Author (Under the Blade, Feral), slasher movie enthusiast, N7 Operative. Plays games, watches movies, reads books. Occasionally writes about them.