The Slasher Movie Encyclopedia: Friday The 13th Part 6: Jason Lives

Greetings all. I would have had this one to you earlier, but I felt what better way to celebrate Halloween than with your boy Caliber, and the Slasher Movie Encyclopedia? Before we get to business I just want to let you know that I won't have any of my typically awesome action figure pictures. I was broke during the initial run of Mezco's Friday 6 figure, and nowadays if you want that bad-boy you have to pay upwards of $200-300. I'd be willing to pay it, but I know, I just KNOW the second I do that NECA will come out with an even better one. Bastards! Alright, let's get down to the business of gettin' down....

After the Jason-less, black-sheep entry of the series, A New Beginning, Paramount got things back on track with arguably the greatest entry in the entire franchise; Friday The 13th Part VI: Jason Lives.

We start off with some fantastic scenic shots; the lake, the woods, all shrouded in fog & darkness. Beautiful & atmospheric. We then see a dog making due with some roadkill before being chased away by Tommy's pick-up. He's here with his pal, Hawes, from the Unger Institute. He's of course played by Horshack, who was perfect in this roll. As it goes, Tommy's visions of Jason won't stop. The drugs were probably making things bareable until Jason started popping up in Tommy's fantasies know. He's thinkin' of some rockin' chicks, and all of a sudden there's Jason. I'd be digging up bodies and burning shit too if that happened. Anyway, he thinks the way to solve this problem is to destroy Jason's body. We're told in A New Beginning that Jason's body was cremated, however the writer/director, Tom McLoughlin fixed that by explaining Elias Voorhees, Jason's father, paid the city to have him buried along with his mother. When they nixed the ending, so went the explanation.

They arrive at the cemetery, which is absolutely gorgeous and built from scratch. Tommy & Hawes get to work digging up Jason, and in no time reach his coffin. When they crank it open and Tommy sees the body of Jason for the first time in 20 years, blood-soaked memories flood his mind, and his only response is to grab a piece of a metal fence and drive it into Jason's hollow chest over & over. Finally, out of breath & seemingly calmer, Tommy gets out of the coffin and grabs the gasoline to finish what he started. However, before he can put that plan into motion, a lightening bolt rips out of the sky and nails the steel rod that's connected to Jason, causing Tommy & Hawes to hit the dirt. Just as they get their barrings back, another lightening bolt connects, bringing with it the life of Jason Voorhees. Tommy heads to the grave to snatch the pole and continue with his mission, but Jason has other plans as he leaps to life and tries to pull Tommy down with him. A definite miss-step in his plan, Tommy grabs the gas and douses Jason, hoping to end this comeback quickly. Unfortunately for him and a few others, the sky opens up and rain dumps down, destroying his matches and hopes for a quick fight. His friend Hawes nails Jason with a shovel, which Jason sees as a game of hit-for-hit. It's his turn, and he simply punches out Hawes' heart, winning the game. Tommy takes this as his que to get the hell out of there, and heads back to the truck. Jason grabs his mask, Tommy's gloves, the spear that brought him to life, and heads towards Camp Crystal Lake.

Tommy knows good & well that he fucked up, so he heads to the Police Station where we meet the super-bad ass Sheriff. He's the kind of bad-ass who's so manly he has to shave his teeth. He isn't buying Tommy's story about Jason, and has him thrown in their jail-cell for the night. Else where, Jason has come across two head counselors who've seemingly lost their way. The guy tries to put Jason down with what appears to be a starter pistol or something, I think he would have had better luck with a fork tied to a stick or something. Either way, Jason takes the weak looking gun as an insult, impales the guy and sends him flying before focusing on the driver, Nancy. She begs for her life and offers money. Despite being the 80's, Jason isn't into the trappings of wealth, and instead jabs the spear through her open mouth, sticking it into the ground behind her head. It's a great kill.

The next morning, the Sheriff's daughter Megan, along with her friends & fellow camp counselors; Cort, Sissy, and Paula, arrive at the station, reporting that the head counselors haven't shown up. Tommy gets everyone's attention by saying it's Jason. The person who's attention he garners the most is that of Megan, who seems a bit smitten with Jason-slayer, Tommy Jarvis. Once they posse out, the Sheriff has mercy on Tommy and simply decides to escort him to his jurisdiction lines. On the way there, Tommy decides to use this opportunity to prove he's right, and zips off towards the cemetery. Once there however, they see the grave has been filled in, because the caretaker, Martin, doesn't want get in trouble for people coming in and screwing around with Jason, so he buried him back up, thinking Hawes' body was Jason's. The Sheriff takes Tommy to the edge of Crystal Lake, which is now known as Forrest Green, and bids him adieu.

Elsewhere, a group of business folk, for the sake of making the scene more fun, we'll assume that these people are reality TV producers. Granted, reality TV wasn't a genre back then, but we'll just forgo that lack of continuity. So, these business folk are out for a game of paintball, and just like life, Jason's not allowed to play in any of the Reindeer games. So, he simply injects himself. He finds a fellow who has a problem with women being out of the kitchen, and throws him so hard towards a tree that he rips his arm off, it's fantastic. Next up he leaps out of a tree and takes off 3 heads at once, in one of the series best moments. It's a damn shame that the censors had their way, because it looked even better.

Once the bodies fall, there stands a surviving member who lets off a paintball at Jason. See, that's why I like him. Never give up hope. You see a guy take off three heads at once? Fuck it, shoot him! You never know! I would have probably even tried a Johnny Cage splits-groin-punch as a last desperate act.

As the night time comes, Cort is spending a little quality time with an attractive female named Nikki, in her RV. Jason comes along, sees the RV is a rockin' and promptly breaks the cardinal rule by goin' a knockin'. He takes out the electricity, prompting Nikki to insist that Cort go out and fix it. They both end up outside and see that it's more than a simple problem, and head back into the RV. A few bars of Teenage Frankenstein later and they're on the road. Cort's rockin' out, while Nikki begins bitching again, prompting Jason to bust out of the bathroom, drag her in, and then shove her face so hard into the mirror connected to the wall that it makes an impression on the outside. Easily one of the greatest kills in the series' history. Afterwards, Jason promptly stabs Cort in the side of the head with a knife, causing the RV to crash in spectacular fashion. Once still, Jason busts open the door and stands atop the smoldering rubble.Like a lion resting atop a kill.

Else where, Tommy has gathered a few books on dealing with the dead, and calls the Sheriff to discuss an attack plan. However, Megan is working the phones, and insists on helping. She shows up, and off they go. However, they don't get far before being chased by the police, which ends up with them looking down the barrel of her father's shotgun. At the station, Tommy is locked up, and the Sheriff receives a phone call regarding Cort & Nikki. He blames Tommy, however Megan has an alibi for the times of the murder. The Sheriff still isn't hearing it, and heads out, leaving his deputy in charge.

Back at the camp, Sissy & Paula are getting ready for bed, when Sissy thinks Cort is outside of the cabin, trying to scare her. To exact vengeance, she pours what's left of a Sprite on him, which has a twist of lemon & lime. Jason then pulls her out of the cabin, and removes her head, also, with a twist of neck & skull. Another great kill, because Jason looks at the head as if to say “I can do this kind of stuff? Fantastic.”. After taking care of a young camper named Nancy, who's seen Jason mobbing around, Paula returns to her cabin. However, she isn't alone for long as Jason blows in with the wind and does major fucking damage to her.

Soon after, the Sheriff shows up with a few of his deputies to have a look around,while back at the station Megan & Tommy pull a fast one and get themselves out of the station, and back in action.

One of the deputies is looking around and catches a spike in the head which sends him flying into an empty boat. Another cop is patrolling and finds one of the campers out running around, saying she saw a bad-man. Which bad-man? The one behind him. Jason pops out and crushes this guy's skull, which would have looked cooler with a bit of brains coming out, but no, the MPAA thought it would turn a whole generation into killers. The Sheriff is running around the camp and taking note of Jason's handywork, before meeting the man himself. We get a great scene here, as Jason shows off just how much he loves to fuck with people. The Sheriff hits him with a shotgun blast that takes him to the ground, only for him to get back up a few moments later. Another blast, and just like that he's back on his feet. The Sheriff then unloads his revolver, and much to my surprise, doesn't also try throwing it at Jason. He then does the sensible thing and runs, quickly hiding in the bushes. Jason gives chase for a moment, but once Megan arrives and starts screaming for her father, his tunnel version is pointed elsewhere. As he heads toward her, the Sheriff leaps up out of his hiding spot, taking it to him full force in order to save his daughter. He gets Jason on his back, grabs a giant rock and crashes it down onto Jason's skull over and over. As always though, it's little to no avail, as Jason grabs the Sheriff by his shoulders and begins to bend him backwards. Suddenly, two noises are competing with one another, the sound of the Sheriff's pain-drenched screams, and all the bones & vertebra in his back snapping as he's bent back completely in half.

Tommy is getting ready for his battle with Jason, by moving the largest rock on Earth. Seriously, this thing is the size of a freaking Cadillac, and he moves it about 100 feet! He rows out into the lake, and provokes Jason by calling him a pussy, and a few other choice terms. Jason storms into the lake, which is a great visual by the way, and comes after Tommy. A few moments pass after Jason submerges underwater, and still no sign of him. So, Tom ups the anty by dumping gas into the water and setting it on fire. Soon, in yet another fantastic visual, Jason leaps out of the water in a fury and does his best to drag Tommy down to the bottom. Resilient as he is, Tommy puts up a fight that eventually ends with Jason breaking the boat in half, and succeeding in his mission to take Tommy down with him. However, he wasn't the only one that succeeded, as he was able to secure Jason to the rock that has now drug him to the bottom of the lake. Since he has no where to go, Jason insists on company as he holds Tommy underwater until he has no choice but to suck in a few lungs-full of water. Megan races out to help him, and just as she reaches his body, Jason grabs her by the ankle and is insistent on all three of them meeting the same fate. However, she's able to get free long enough to turn on the boat's motor and send it crashing into Jason's face & neck, eventually breaking it and turning out his lights for the time being. She drags Tommy to the shore, where CPR is preformed, and he comes back to life, just barely escaping death.

Slasher Movie Tally:
Killed: 17
Swear Words: 22
Boobies: 0
Slow Motion Scenes: 6
Foot Chase: 3
Fake-Out Scares: 3
Car Stall: 0
Drugs/Drinking/Sex: 1 instance of sex
Warned But No Belief: Many times

Caliber Rates The Deaths:
Hawes: Heart punched out – 8/10
Darren: Spiked – 4/10
Liz: Spiked in face – 7.5/10
Burt: Arm-ripped off, impaled on tree – 8/10
Triple Decapitation: 8/10
Martin: Liquor bottle in throat – 6/10
Annette & Steven: Shish-kabob – 4/10
Nikki: Face smashed into mirror & RV wall – 10/10
Cort: Knife in skull – 5/10
Sissy: Head twisted off – 8/10
Paula: Seemingly put through a juicer – 4/10
Cop: Spike thrown into head – 5/10
Vain Cop: Head crushed – 6/10
Sheriff: Bent in half – 10/10

Box-Office Business:
Created by Paramount Studios, Friday The 13th Part VI: Jason Lives was made on a budget of 3 million dollars, and released on August 1st, 1986, to 1,610 theaters. Averaging $4,193 per theater, it brought in a total of $6,750,837 during it's opening weekend, and came in at #2, behind James Cameron's Aliens. At the end of it's run, the film brought in a domestic total of $19,472,057.

Things You Need To Know In Order To Survive:
When Tommy opens up Jason's graves, the hands actually belong to director Tom McLoughlin.

Once Jason opens his eye, you see a maggot fall downward, which obviously means he wasn't laying down.

Tommy jumps in the truck to flee the graveyard, and the car fires up without a key ever being inserted or turned.

When you see Jason aim for Liz, who happens to be Tom McLoughlin's wife, Nancy, she darts to the right, and Jason's spear follows. The actor playing Jason, CJ Graham, was actually suppose to just hit the seat she was sitting in, but accidentally followed her. Nancy was unharmed, and the shot is the one you see in the film.

This is the only Friday film without any nudity.

When Cort is rockin' out out to Teenage Frankenstein, he turns up the volume, however the volume doesn't go up.

Darcy DeMoss, who played Nikki, has ties to two other Friday films. She auditioned for the part in A New Beginning that ended up going to Debby Sue Voorhees, because she was better endowed. In The Final Chapter, she's in the exercise video that Axel is watching. Me, personally, I think she's the hottest girl in the history of the series. Still looks great.

In the original script, the caretaker Martin doesn't die. Instead, he's in the last scene, with Jason's father, Elias Voorhees. It was to be revealed that he was the one who's been paying Martin to look after the graves, as well as kept the city from burning his body. The studio didn't want the responsibility of having to expand that, so it was cut.

Originally cast as Jason was stuntman Dan Bradley, who was the stunt coordinator on films such as Spider-Man 2 & 3, Crank, and the Jason Bourne trilogy. He filmed the paintball scenes, and when the studio execs saw the footage, they felt he was far too husky and needed to be recast. Enter CJ Graham.

Final Rating:
For me, it just doesn't get better than Jason Lives. It was more than just a simple horror film, and went far & beyond what the previous films had done. I'm not saying they were lacking with what they did, but by the 6th one, you have to do more than just the same old song & dance.
Humor was something the previous films had, but not on the consistent level of Jason Lives, nor with the sharpness of it. This one also ramped up the action with guns, car chases, and an RV flipping over.
Not only were elements enhanced, so was Jason. Now that he was supernatural, Tom got creative with that aspect and gave us some of Jason's most memorable kills. Everything from the heart punch, to the triple decapitation, to the Sheriff's back-cracking helped to make this one of the funnest & more spectacular slasher films of all time. An absolute classic.

5 Head-Butts out of 5 

If you guys like the SME entries and want to check out more of my work, then Str8 Gangster, No Chaser is the place. It's been my home base for 4 years now, and has articles on everything ranging from action/horror movies, Top 5 lists, pro-wrestling, editorials, fiction pieces, and just about everything else under the sun. You can also get links to some of my other websites, as well as my e-books that are available on amazon. 

I'm digging the emails you guys have been sending, and enjoy talking with you. If you ever want to have a question featured here in the mailbag portion, just let me know and it'll get posted. For those who don't know it, you can hit me up at  

I've been asked a couple times, so I thought I'd let everyone know that yes indeed, there will be a Slasher Movie Encyclopedia e-book. Before that however, there will be a special SME ebook based solely on the Friday The 13th films that will not only feature SME articles, but various other Friday The 13th articles I've written. Such as what order I rank the films, my top 10 favorite deaths, my favorite looks of Jason, and quite a few others. But don't worry, that doesn't mean I won't be posting the entries here as well.  

Alright, see you guys next time...

- Caliber Winfield  

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