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Celebrate Mother’s Day with Horror’s 11 Most Memorable Moms

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Celebrate Mother's Day with Horror's 11 Most Memorable MomsIt’s that time of year again when we take a moment to honor our moms. And how great they are, right? Well, here at Dread Central we can turn even the most loving moms into something horrific, and in celebration of Mother’s Day, we bring you Horror’s 11 Most Memorable Moms!

Read on… and eat your vegetables for chrissake!

Okay, so not all the moms on this list are psychotic killers; some are heroes, and some fall somewhere in between. But they’re all great for their own reasons. As usual, we’ll start out with some honorable mentions, and we certainly have some remarkable moms to speak about. We’ll start with Estelle Collingwood (played by Cynthia Carr) in the original Last House on the Left. Only a mother’s love could drive a person to bite a guy’s Johnson off as an act of revenge! Another great justice-seeking mother was Kate (played by Vera Farmiga) in Orphan. When she realized what Esther was doing to her family, she showed her no mercy.

We also have a few psycho moms to mention, including Mommie Dearest herself, Joan Crawford (played by Faye Dunaway). Yes, it’s technically more drama than horror, but any time a film contains a wire hanger beating, it qualifies as horror. Barbara Hershey was a delightfully overprotective mother to the point of instability in Black Swan, and as mentally broken mothers go, it’s hard to top Charlotte Gainsbourg as a character simply referred to as “She” in Antichrist. However, deciding to carry your dead baby to term may just top it all as Madeline Matheson (Jordan Ladd) did in Grace. The film shows why that’s a really bad idea.

And we’re almost obligated to throw some love to the two moms from Troma’s Mother’s Day (1980) and Darren Lynn Bousman’s 2010 remake, Rose Ross as Mother and Rebecca De Mornay as Natalie “Mother” Koffin, respectively.

And when you’re wishing your own mom Happy Mother’s Day this year, thank her for not being an “Octomom,” ridiculously tanned mom or “Plus 8.” Talk about horrors!

Celebrate Mother's Day with Horror's 11 Most Memorable Moms

Mother Firefly (Karen Black in House of 1,000 Corpses and Leslie Easterbrook in The Devil’s Rejects)
Played by not one, but two memorable actresses, Mother Firefly had the unenviable task of trying to keep the Firefly clan in line. You could say she did a pretty good job of it, but considering they spent most of their time raping and murdering people, you might think there was some delinquent parenting going on here somewhere. Regardless of that, though, Mother Firefly was nothing if not impressive, and her over-the-top, sultry “way with men” made her an outstanding character and a top mom for sure!

Sarah Scarangelo (Alysson Paradis in Inside (À l’intérieur)
Sarah was a mom just about to give birth to her first baby… and then she showed up. Sarah is confronted by one of the most psychotic women ever captured on film, and she holds up quite well for a woman who’s nine months pregnant. Well, she holds up well for a really long time. But Beatrice Dalle’s antagonist, known only as La Femme, is simply too much to withstand, and Sarah’s motherhood is short-lived.


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Donna Trenton (Dee Wallace in Cujo)
Stephen King has made a career out of disturbing his readers. And he often does this by placing his characters in trapped, claustrophobic situations. He never achieves this more perfectly than in Cujo, putting Donna Trenton in a tiny hatchback with her child while a rabid St. Bernard does everything he can to get at them. And not only did Dee Wallace play a great character in the film, according to her daughter, Gabrielle Stone, her portrayal of Donna helped Gabrielle feel safe in her own home because of how badass her mom was in the film. Grrr!

The Woman (Pollyanna McIntosh in The Woman)
You might think that if we were going to highlight a character from The Woman in a top moms list ,then that nod would have to go to Angela Bettis as Belle Cleek. Although Bettis gave her usual wonderful performance, the mother we chose to honor was The Woman herself. Some mothers build their families the traditional way while other have families thrust upon them, as was the case with this cannibalistic, feral woman. She begins the film as something of an antagonist, but through the brilliance of Jack Ketchum’s writing and Lucky McKee’s direction, she morphs into the victim and then the hero of the film. And as the dust settles, The Woman finds herself with a new family which she decides to lead. A great ending to a very impressive film.


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Margaret White (Piper Laurie in Carrie)
Now here’s a legendary horror movie mother, and Margaret White absolutely earned her way onto this list by being truly batshit crazy and driving her daughter mental as well with her Christian Fundamentalist beliefs and obsessive personality… bad combination. As Carrie becomes increasingly more distraught, Margaret’s madness worsens as well until the final bloody climax of the film. Piper Laurie’s portrayal of this psycho mom is one for the ages and helped make Carrie the legendary movie it became. Julianne Moore has some big shoes to fill in the Carrie remake, but we’re rooting for her to join Piper next year on lists like this one.

Tiff (Jennifer Tilly in Seed of Chucky)
Who says your child has to be flesh and blood to be a super mom? Of course we know Tiff showed up well before Seed of Chucky, but it was in this film where she officially became the great mom we all knew her to be. Sure, it was tough for her to quit killing people and act like a good mother, but she did her best. Tiff’s Glen/Glenda baby inspired the bloodthirsty plastic babe to go on the straight and narrow, but living a good life while trying to co-exist with Chucky is pretty much impossible, and Mama Tiff finds this out. Although she does manage to find her escape in the end.


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Phyllis (Traci Lords in Excision)
Excision was one of last year’s most impressive horror films, and much of the reason for that was the amazing performance of AnnaLynne McCord in the lead role of Pauline. However, Pauline would not have been the powerful character she was without the influence of her mother, Phyllis, brought to life wonderfully by Traci Lords. Phyllis is an absolutely cold and domineering mother who fails to realize just how disturbed her daughter Pauline has become. It all comes clear to her very quickly, however, during in the film’s thrilling climax.

Vera Cosgrove (Elizabeth Moody in Dead Alive)
Sweet Vera Cosgrove. She’s about as cuddly as a porcupine, and there couldn’t be a better patient zero for a zombie outbreak. After getting bitten by an infected Sumatran Rat-Monkey, Vera starts the rapid degradation from strong, domineering mother to blathering, slathering undead beastie. In a movie famous for its over-the-topness, Vera epitomizes the tone of the film and is roof-raisingly monstrous. She is a memorable mom in an unforgettable film, and there is always something to be said for a character that can shoot infected pus from her arm across a dinner table before eating her own ear. You go, Vera!


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Edith “Mama” Brennan (Javier Botet in Mama)
A film that portrays just how strong a mother’s love can be, Mama illustrates how powerful that love is. A specter of a distraught mother past, Mama is out to replace the child she lost and is willing to cross the lines between the living and the dead to do so. She’s one of the scariest mothers on this list. Mama builds to a crescendo as we learn just who this mysterious mother creature is.

Norma Bates (Legendary Psycho horror character and Vera Farmiga in “Bates Motel”)
“Why she wouldn’t even harm a fly.” Norma’s classic quote spoken through Norman at the end of Psycho perfectly ties up everything in the groundbreaking film. More recently, Vera Farmiga has resurrected Norma Bates in the popular A&E television series “Bates Motel”. Farmiga does a great job breathing life into the iconic matriarch in this television series that has viewers riveted to their TV screens to see just how things are going to work out for this strange mother-son pair.

Pamela Voorhees (Betsy Palmer in Friday the 13th)
Of course Pamela Voorhees tops this list. Pamela, the original hater of drug use and fornication amongst camp counselors, decided to take matters into her own hands to avenge the death of her boy, Jason, as the teens who were supposed to be watching him swim were screwing and smoking weed while Jason drowned. Her vengeful nature helped tie together a story that kicked off one of the longest running and most lucrative franchises in the history of horror movies. Not bad. Check out the moving tribute to Pamela Voorhees below featuring “My Immortal” by Evanescence.

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Fearsome Fates: Top 10 Deaths from the Nightmare on Elm Street Franchise

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Nightmare 4

How can you escape death when all it does is wait for you to fall asleep? This question of human vulnerability led the late filmmaker Wes Craven on a journey that culminated in one of cinema’s most deleterious and recognizable horror film icons: Freddy Krueger. The man in the Christmas sweater and dirty brown hat is every bit as important to the horror genre as Darth Vader is to science fiction.

What ultimately separated the Elm Street ventures from other macabre movie franchises like Friday the 13th and Halloween was the creativity with which Krueger disposed of his victims, and the fantasy-based elements of the kids’ extravagant nightmares. The gimmick of dying in the dream world equating to death in reality spelled doom for those trying to outrun Krueger’s wrath.

After nine feature films and a calamitous television series that is best left buried in the past, the Elm Street series was more hit than miss.

With that in mind, here are the Fearsome Fates: Top 10 Deaths from the Nightmare on Elm Street Franchise.

10. Freddy’s Dead: The Final Nightmare (Carlos)

“Nice hearing from you, Carlos” – Only Wes Craven’s New Nightmare (1994) was worse in the Elm Street saga than Freddy’s Dead: The Final Nightmare (1991). However, the lackluster sixth installment of the franchise gives fans one very memorable, bone-chilling death sequence. Carlos (Ricky Dean Logan) is attacked by Freddy and the youth has his ears cleansed courtesy of a monstrous Q-tip. Carlos is deaf and loses his hearing aid in the scuffle. Carlos manages to retrieve it only to have the hearing aid meld with his head and ear.

Everything Carlos hears is amplified thanks to Freddy’s torturous hearing aid. Krueger pulls out a chalkboard and then scrapes his sharp claws across it to create an unbearably loud symphony of screeching, which results in Carlos’ head exploding. Freddy blows the kid’s mind, literally.

9. A Nightmare on Elm Street 3: Dream Warriors (Taryn)

“Let’s get high” – Director Chuck Russell and writer Frank Darabont’s much-needed assistance on the Elm Street series marked the beginnings of much more creative carnage, in terms of Freddy’s surreal means of disposing of his victims. While trying to join Kristen (Patricia Arquette) in the dream world, young Taryn (Jennifer Rubin) is separated from her fellow Dream Warriors. With her punk-rock hairdo and knives, the former junkie does battle with Krueger.

Just as Taryn thinks she has gained the upper hand, Freddy turns the tables on her. Krueger reveals that all of his fingers have been replaced with drug-filled syringes. Taryn gasps when she finds tiny little mouths have replaced her drug scars. Freddy injects all of the needles into her arm and pumps her full of the fatal cocktail. Taryn’s screams, as Freddy smirks, “What a rush.”

8. A Nightmare on Elm Street (Glen)

“I’m your boyfriend now, Nancy” – Johnny Depp made his acting debut in the original Nightmare (1984), but his character of Glen didn’t fair too well. Skeptical of the existence of child killer Fred Krueger, Glen comes to the same grisly fate as the other children of Elm Street even though his stalwart girlfriend Nancy (Heather Langenkamp) implores that he doesn’t go to sleep. Glen welcomes his nightly slumber anyway.

Freddy’s glove emerges from the youth’s mattress, latches onto Glen, and pulls him into the bed. Blood explodes from the hole and cascades like a violent waterfall. In uncut footage from the scene, the bed even spits Glen back up with his body slathered in blood.

Wes Craven felt the scene was scarier and more effective without knowing what Glen’s corpse looked like, and it certainly makes one of the following scenes, which occurs between Lt. Thompson (John Saxon) and his officer, much more eerie as they discuss the crime scene’s gruesome atmosphere.

7. A Nightmare on Elm Street 5: The Dream Child (Greta)

“Bon appetit, bitch” – Greta (Erika Anderson) is an aspiring model who watches her weight. When Greta’s mom throws a dinner party the teenager has absolutely no appetite, because her friend Dan Jordan (Danny Hassel) has been killed in an accident. Greta falls asleep during the dinner and Freddy takes full advantage. Krueger shows up in a chef’s hat and proceeds to force feed Greta, in a monstrous-looking high chair.

Greta tries to spit out the pulsating food, but Freddy continues to shove it down her throat. With each passing bite, Greta’s jowls grow more grotesque. Engorged, Greta falls into Freddy’s arms and she eventually chokes to death. This could easily have been No. 1 on our list, if the scene had not been butchered by censors.

The horrifying truth revealed in Stephen Hopkins’ director’s cut: Freddy is feeding Greta to herself! Greta’s stomach has been cut open and Freddy is scooping up her insides and forcing them down the teen’s throat. It’s a chilling and nauseating death sequence, in what is sadly one of the weaker installments of the franchise.

6. A Nightmare on Elm Street 4: The Dream Master (Debbie)

“You can check in, but you can’t check out” – What happens when you team the winsome actress Brooke Theiss with special effects artist “Screaming Mad” George – aka Joji Tani? You get one of the most bizarre death sequences in Nightmare history. Poor Debbie (Theiss), a fitness guru, is really only afraid of one little thing – cockroaches. Naturally, Freddy turns Debbie’s worst fear against her.

While working out, Deb dozes off. She seems to still be in her home gym when Freddy suddenly appears. In a test of strength, Freddy grabs the bar, loaded with weight Deb is trying to bench press, and slowly forces it down toward her. Deb loses the fight and her elbows bend and crack open, under the immense pressure. Her arms are quickly replaced by the legs of a cockroach.

Deb slowly continues her bizarre metamorphosis, until she becomes an oversized bug. Trapped in a roach motel, Deb watches in horror, as Freddy smashes the trap in his hand. Deb’s bug-like guts, and the innards of the roach motel, spew out as Krueger cackles in triumph.

5. A Nightmare on Elm Street 5: The Dream Child (Dan)

“Better not dream and drive” – In the tradition of surviving Elm Street children making it to the sequel, Dread Central presents for your approval Dan Jordan (Danny Hassel). After the events of The Dream Master, Alice (Lisa Wilcox) and her boyfriend Dan are expecting a little bundle of joy. But before they can celebrate the baby’s birth, the couple must endure the wrath of Freddy Krueger once more. Surprisingly, Alice begins dreaming while she is awake. While working a shift at the Crave Inn, Alice comes face to face with both Freddy and his mother, Amanda Kruger (Beatrice Boepple).

Frightened, Alice calls Dan and begs him to join her immediately. Dan ditches his friends at a high school swim party, jumps in his truck and races to his love. Dan falls asleep on route and is confronted by Freddy. The two engage in a high speed race down a busy highway, while Krueger drives like a bat out of hell. Freddy violently shifts gears and Dan is thrown through the windshield.

Frantic to get to Alice, Dan absconds with a motorcycle parked out front of the school gym. But the teen is still asleep and now at the mercy of Freddy’s demonic cycle. The bike begins to merge with Dan and the two become a weird cyborg/motorcycle concoction. Sadly, the nightmare and reality ends when Dan crashes just yards shy of reaching Alice. Like so many other horror film sequences, this one was mercilessly chopped by the ratings board.

4. A Nightmare on Elm Street (Tina)

“Tina, watch this” – Filmmaker Wes Craven’s original Nightmare remains the seminal work that spewed into a cavalcade of money-making sequels, merchandise and a brief series on television. And while the first Elm Street venture is much darker than many of the other films in the series, its first death scene did not lack creativity. Tina (Amanda Wyss) is having bad dreams. After a particularly scary nightmare, Tina, not wanting to be alone while her mother is out of town, invites her best friend Nancy (Heather Langenkamp) and her beau Glen (Johnny Depp) to spend the night.

Tina’s boyfriend Rod (Nick Corri, aka Jsu Garcia) shows up unannounced and takes her mind off those pesky dreams with a sexual romp. However, the hours following take a dark and ominous turn when the lovers fall asleep. Freddy returns to Tina’s nightmare but this time he does away with her. The sequence is one of pure fantasy and horrific brutality. Tina’s stomach is sliced opened. Blood spews and the teen screams for Rod’s help, as she is helplessly dragged up the walls and across the ceiling of her mother’s bedroom.

Rod is forced to watch, as his girlfriend is gutted like a fish and tossed around the room. Sadly, what is transpiring in Tina’s nightmare is happening in reality, too. Tina is slain and Rod is arrested, leaving it to Nancy to figure out how to stop Freddy before there’s no one left to sleep.

3. A Nightmare on Elm Street 4: The Dream Master (Joey)

“How’s this for a wet dream?” – After defeating Freddy in Dream Warriors, the three remaining Elm Street children quickly succumb to Krueger’s revenge. After Kincaid (Ken Sagoes) puts up a valiant, but ultimately useless effort, Freddy moves onto Joey (Rodney Eastman). Joey’s weakness has always been women and while he watches MTV from his waterbed, Joey doses off.

He seems to wake up, as his bed begins to violently thrash about. Joey pulls back his comforter to see the sexy and quite naked Hope Marie CarltonEnamored, Joey watches as Hope swims away into the unseen depths of the waterbed. Suddenly, Freddy comes exploding through the clear mattress.

He grabs Joey and cackles. The pair wrestle, but the best Joey can do is scream for fellow dream warrior Kristen (Tuesday Knight). Freddy slices and dices, as Joey vanishes and the water in his bed turns blood red. It’s one of the most creative deaths in the series and it comes with a great zinger.

2. A Nightmare on Elm Street 3: Dream Warriors (Jennifer)

“Welcome to prime time, bitch!” – Mental patient Jennifer (Penelope Sudrow) cons the orderly Max (Laurence Fishburne) into letting her watch a little T.V. after hours. Jennifer dreams of going to Hollywood and becoming an actress, but this time her nightmare man awaits.

The television screen is static, so Jennifer changes the channels. Without any success, she hits the T.V. A pair of mechanized Freddy arms bursts free from the side of the hanging television set and snatches up the frightened girl.

Krueger’s head then emerges from the top of T.V. He smiles and barks at her, “This is it, Jennifer – your big break in T.V.” After Jennifer screams some more, Mr. K utters that now most famous line, “Welcome to prime time, bitch,” as he slams her head into the television screen. Max returns to find Jennifer’s corpse hanging head-first from the T.V.

1. A Nightmare on Elm Street 3: Dream Warriors (Phillip)

“He was wide awake, all the way down” – Phillip (Bradley Gregg) is just another of the tortured teens incarcerated in Nightmare 3. Sadly, audiences do not have the chance to discover Phillip’s dream power, because he is immediately snuffed out by the guy in the dirty red and green sweater.

Phillip does exhibit an artistic talent for carving puppets, not to mention a proclivity for sleepwalking. Freddy exploits both. In Phillip’s nightmare, Freddy comes to life in the vessel of one of his unfinished puppets. Phillip watches in horror, as Kruger grows to his natural life-size form. Freddy then slashes open Phillip’s arms and legs, pulls out his bloody veins and transforms the boy into one grotesquely deformed puppet.

Krueger directs Phillip, as a puppet master would guide his marionette, and sends the teen hurling off the top of the mental hospital. The other kids watch as their friend plummets to his death, and the method suggests not murder but suicide.

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Which deaths were your favorites? Were there any that didn’t make our list you’d like to have seen included? Sound off on social media!

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Fearsome Fates: Top 10 Deaths from the Friday the 13th Franchise

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Filmmaker Sean S. Cunningham took John Carpenter’s Halloween, ripped it off and helped further a bloody new sub-genre of horror movies: the slasher film. There are so many memorable flicks in the Friday the 13th film series, which are loaded with splatter and suspense. Pound for pound, there are more beautiful women and devilishly creative fatalities than most other Silver Screen series – a bloody legacy. With 12 installments, boasting a body count of nearly 200 victims, there are so many unforgettable moments.

And with that in mind here is Dread Central’s Fearsome Fates: Top 10 Deaths From the Friday the 13th Franchise.

10. Friday the 13th Part III (Vera)

There are sexy casts and then there are the alluring women of Friday the 13th: Part III (1982). They have to be one of the best-looking groups of actresses ever assembled during what was the height of the slasher films. Poor Vera (Catherine Parks) has the dubious honor of being Jason’s (Richard Brooker) first victim when he first dons the now trademark hockey mask.

After stealing the new facial guise from camp pariah Shelly (Larry Zerner), Jason uses a harpoon gun to fire a spear into lovely Vera’s eye. This is one the most memorable deaths, of the franchise, and the cherry on top is the fact that it’s in 3-D. Yes, it’s bad 3-D, by today’s standards, but die-hard audiences love it.

9. Friday the 13th Part 2 (Mark)

Will Jason attack a man in a wheelchair? Unfortunately, Friday fanatics know the answer to be yes. All these years later, fans continue to feel horrible for the handicapped Mark, portrayed by the late actor Tom McBride. Mark is waiting patiently for Vickie (Lauren-Marie Taylor) to return to him, because after all their flirting they are finally ready to have sex together.

Jason (Warrington Gillette) surprises the crippled boy, while he waits outside, and smacks Mark with a machete to the face. Mark rolls backwards in his wheelchair down a steep staircase. It’s a brutal kill, and it is too bad Mark didn’t get the chance to get laid in the first Friday sequel.

8. Jason Goes to Hell: The Final Friday (Deborah)

This is by far and away the worst Friday the 13th film ever made, and that’s saying something since Jason Voorhees spends other chapters of the saga killing people in New York City and outer space. Jason Goes to Hell: The Final Friday (1993) is just a gross slap in the face to the fans, as the filmmakers Adam Marcus, Dean Lorey, and Jay Huguely decided to show Jason (Kane Hodder) killing his victims via possession. Wait, what?

Now, despite being the worst of the series, there is one spectacular kill. Luke (Michael B. Silver) is having sex with Deborah (Michelle Clunie) in the woods. Jason sneaks up to their tent, even stepping on the condom the pair should have been using, as he approaches.

After Deborah climbs on stop of Luke, Jason impales Deborah with an old sign post through the tent in which the couple occupies. In one violent motion, Jason rips the post upward and splits her beautiful body in half. This is a waste of an attractive woman, but still one of the most satisfying kills ever.

7. Jason Lives: Friday the 13th Part VI (Hawes)

This is such an important entry in the series, because Jason Lives: Friday the 13th Part VI (1986) is the film that made Jason (C.J. Graham) supernatural, and the first kill really sets the beautifully violent tone. After inadvertently bringing Jason back to life, Tommy Jarvis (Thom Mathews) watches in horror as his friend Hawes (Ron Palillo) is brutally murdered. In an awesome display of brute strength, Jason punches a hole in Hawes’ chest.

His arm extends through Hawes’ back and the youngster’s heart is clutched in Jason’s demonic grasp. Side note, it may also be satisfying to those who recognized Palillo from his annoying character Horshack on the television show Welcome Back, Kotter. It seems that Jason felt the same way about that show as many others did when he ripped Horshack’s, I mean Hawes’ heart out of his chest.

6. Jason X (Adrienne)

After the disaster that was Jason Goes to Hell: The Final Friday (1993)—and the fact that there were eight years between these films—it was a stunner that somewhere a room full of executives actually green lit the idea of sending Jason (Kane Hodder) into space. Unfortunately, the film had a rather short theatrical run.

As bad as it turned out to be, there is a very memorable kill. While Adrienne (Kristi Angus) examines Jason, our masked menace slowly comes back to life. As she inspects the killer’s tissue under her microscope, Jason sneaks up behind her.

Jason drags Adrienne across the room, forces her head into a sink of icy coolant (freezing her face) and then slams her head into the counter, causing Adrienne’s head to explode on impact. It’s the high point of the film, unfortunately.

5. Friday the 13th Part III (Rick)

This might be the best/worst example of what happens to a lovelorn character in a horror film. Rick (Paul Kratka) desperately tries to reconnect with his old flame, Chris (Dana Kimmell), during their time at Camp Crystal Lake. Unfortunately, Jason (Richard Brooker) gets his hands on Rick before Chris has a chance to see what a great guy she has.

While checking the exterior of their cabin, Jason grabs Rick and gags him with his hand, blocking Chris from hearing Rick’s screams for help. When she returns to the interior of the cabin, Jason hoists Rick into the air, squeezes his head, and pops it like a zit.

The result is Rick’s eye squirting out of his skull, in all its 3-D glory. It was the cheesy 3-D effects of the early 1980s, and you can see the eyeball traveling down the wire toward the camera, but it’s still one of the best “Oh my God!” moments in the series. 

4. Freddy vs. Jason (Trey)

Jason (Ken Kirzinger) doesn’t waste any time, as he quickly dispatches Gibb’s (Katharine Isabelle) obnoxious boyfriend, Trey (Jesse Hutch), during the opening moments of the film. After an off-screen sex romp with Gibb, Trey lies in bed with a beer when Jason strikes.

Voorhees repeatedly plunges his machete into Trey’s back and then folds the youth up in the bed like a taco shell. It’s an awesome display of Jason’s power and director Ronny Yu’s obsession with loads of blood and gore. Audiences that had any qualms about whether or not Freddy vs. Jason (2003) would live up to their own respective franchises should have been alleviated right then.

This is one of the most memorable deaths in either series, and the film is one of the best Freddy and Friday films made – a great monster movie melee.

3. Friday the 13th Part VII: The New Blood (Judy)

The only actor to play the character of Jason Voorhees more than once is fan favorite, Kane Hodder. This was his first appearance as the man behind the hockey mask, and his favorite kill as the character is in this film. While waiting for her boyfriend to return to their tent, Judy (Deborah Kessler) gets comfortable in her sleeping bag. Jason cuts his way into the tent and scoops up Judy in the sleeping bag.

Jason drags her, kicking and screaming, to a tree. Jason then hoists the sleeping bag into the air and slams Judy’s head into the tall timber in one hellacious motion, which cracks her skull. It’s so simplistic and yet diabolically creative.

2. Jason Lives: Friday the 13th Part VI (Sheriff Garris)

Sheriff Garris (David Kagen) is hiding at the campgrounds after an unsuccessful first encounter with Jason Voorhees (C.J. Graham). But, when the sheriff hears his daughter Megan (Jennifer Cooke) screaming for help, he rushes to confront Jason in order to protect his girl.

Garris attacks Jason and begins beating him with a tree branch, forces him to the ground, and climbs on top of him, as he repeatedly smashes a rock into Jason’s skull. But, Voorhees gets the upper hand and forces Garris backwards in the wrong direction – folding the sheriff up like a lawn chair. The sound of Garris’ back breaking is what makes this death so effective, and it is one of the most chilling and creative deaths in the Friday films.

1. Friday the 13th: The Final Chapter (Jason)

This is truly a case of saving the best for last, and it’s the only kill on our list that wasn’t carried out by the man behind the hockey mask. In what was supposed to be the final Friday the 13th movie, Jason (Ted White) squares off against siblings Trish (Kimberly Beck) and Tommy Jarvis (Corey Feldman) at the film’s climax. Jason is fixing to murder Trish when Tommy takes him by surprise by revealing himself on the staircase with a bald head.

Jason is confused, as he stares at the young boy who has shaved his own head to look like a young Jason Voorhees. Trish grabs the machete and swipes at Jason’s head, which only knocks off his hockey mask. Trish drops the machete and screams, as Jason closes in for the kill, but Tommy picks up the weapon and slams it into Jason’s head. With the machete caught in his left eye socket, Jason drops to his knees and then headfirst toward the floor.

The flooring shoves the machete upward, as Jason’s head slides down the weapon. And, here’s your cliché of the day: Jason got an eyeful. This is by far and away the very best kill in the franchise. Plus, this film is one of the best of the series. You can’t go wrong with the Final Chapter; it is classic horror cinema.

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Which deaths were your favorites? Were there some that didn’t make the list you can’t believe the author omitted? Kevin Bacon and Mrs. Voorhees? Sound off on social media!

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Horror History: More Doctor Who Sightings in Horror Movies

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Sighting “Doctor Who” actors appearing in horror movie roles has opened floodgates of discussion on social media! Yes, the films I mentioned in my last Dread Central article are not the only horror movie appearances of Doctor Who.

In my last article we saw Patrick Troughton as the priest in 1976’s The Omen, as Inspector Kanof in The Gorgon (1964), and in 1970’s Scars of Dracula. We reviewed Jon Pertwee in The House that Dripped Blood (1971). We recognized Tom Baker in The Golden Voyage of Sinbad (1973).

As working actors, these three pop up in movies and TV shows throughout the decades, and there are many more Doctor Who sightings, like the uncredited Patrick Troughton police inspector role in Season One of “The Saint.” While we once again time travel in this article, I’m going to continue to concentrate on the first four actors who played the good Doctor.

Since I left the first Doctor out of my previous article, we’ll start with William Hartnell. His comedic performance in the thriller Midnight at the Wax Museum (1936), 30 years before setting the standard for Doctor Who, proves this actor was well known and well seasoned when picked for the then-new BBC kid’s program.

Midnight at the Wax Museum, also called Midnight at Madame Tussaud’s, is about an explorer spending the night in Madame Tussauds Chamber of Horrors. The film was actually shot in Madame Tussauds; I remember it to be spooky, but when I saw it, I was very young.

Good luck finding this film to watch now. Even harder to find is Hartnell’s I’m an Explosive (1933), in which he starred (I assume) as the son of an inventor who accidentally drinks an explosive liquid. Sounds like horror to me.

Vault of Horror (1973) is much easier to get hold of and features the fourth Doctor, Tom Baker. An anthology film based on EC comic book tales written by Al Feldstein and Bill Gaines, Vault of Horror delivers like any of the Amicus horror movies: similar to Hammer in that you know you will be entertained.

Vault of Horror is a follow-up to Amicus’ Tales From the Crypt (1972), also based on EC comic stories. Both are directed by Roy Ward Baker and contrive ways to string together separate tales.

In the fifth segment of Vault of Horror, Tom Baker portrays a poor artist who finds a way to exact revenge on those who wronged him. Baker plays this character with a low-key subtlety, giving depth and sympathy to a character that could have come across whiny, cruel, or witless.

We’d be here all day if we counted Peter Cushing as a Doctor, due to his horror work with Hammer Film Productions and more.

Cushing portrayed the Doctor in two mid-’60s movies, Dr. Who and the Daleks and Daleks’ Invasion Earth 2150 A.D., films generally regarded as outside the mythos, although explaining their existence is a fun fanboy exercise. Feel free to post your explanation below!

Cushing’s Who was less crotchety than Hartnell’s portrayal of the character, and Hartnell’s was the only Doctor at the time. You could say Peter Cushing was the first actor to take Doctor Who in a different direction.

It has been fun time traveling with you! Your comments below are encouraged and appreciated.

Gary Scott Beatty’s graphic novel Wounds is available on Amazon and Comixology. Is madness a way to survive the zombie apocalypse? The strangest zombie story ever written, Wounds throws us into a world where nothing is beyond doubt, except a father’s concern for his wife and daughter. If you enjoy that “What th-?” factor in graphic novels, you’ll enjoy Wounds. For more from Gary Scott Beatty, visit him on Twitter and Facebook.

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