Disqus for Friday The 13th: The Film Franchise




The Black Sheep Of The Franchise: Friday The 13th: A New Beginning Versus Jason Goes To Hell

It's an interesting idea to think that any film within a franchise could be viewed as so inferior to previous entries that it is cast aside and thought of as not belonging within. That's what has happened to a few of the films in the Friday The 13th franchise and that is what we are going to take a look at today.

Throughout the late 1980's and into the early 1990's, Friday The 13th: A New Beginning had joined the ranks of such films like Halloween 3: The Season Of The Witch as being categorized as the Black Sheep of its respective film franchise. There are many reasons fans hurled their hatred towards the fifth movie in the Friday The 13th franchise, but one singular reason stood out for why the second Tommy Jarvis tale suffered the fan's wrath and that was Jason Voorhees was not the killer in the film.

Eliminating the main iconic character from the murder spree depicted in the film was devastating to the fans and quite frankly made the masses feel cheated by Paramount Pictures. Excluding Jason from participating in the death sequences is one thing, but masquerading another hockey masked killer into the fray and later revealing that person to be a distraught father was definitely a drop kick to the face of the most loyal fans. This move also was viewed as financial suicide as a once super profitable film franchise took a huge drop in revenue and never truly recovered to reach the heights of the early part of the decade.

Over the next few decades many fans, old and new, began to warm to the idea presented in A New Beginning, only if ever so slightly. To this day there are still a lot people that despise Roy Burns as the vengeful villain at Pinehurst. However, that did not dissuade New Line Cinema and the creators of Jason Goes To Hell from venturing down a bit of a similar path when it was decided to eliminate the physical appearance of Jason Voorhees from the 1993 film and introduce the slasher icon's ability to jump in and out of victim's bodies.

The difference between A New Beginning and Jason Goes To Hell is that the first film only kept the true Jason alive in Tommy Jarvis' dreams and hallucinations whereas Jason as a character in the latter film was always present during the killing scenes, only inside some other person's body. It's true that this could be an apples to apples comparison, but the fact is that although both films take the physical Jason out of the equation, Jason Goes To Hell actually embraces the town of Crystal Lake while creating a mythology of the curse laid upon that lake region and also attempts to give Mr. Voorhees a personality.

Both films have very similar ideas. In one way or another, both projects introduce a whodunit element along with their own brand of mystery while keeping with the traditions of the Friday The 13th film franchise. The supernatural elements of Jason Goes To Hell always seem to turn the most ravenous Friday The 13th fan against it. Both A New Beginning and Jason Goes To Hell have very colorful characters along with some interesting death sequences and fair share of nudity, but for some reason the idea of Jason, in his physical state, not being in frame doing the killing automatically turns fans away. It's a shame as this writer actually enjoys both films for different reasons and can appreciate the different take on the franchise they aspired to accomplish.

Which of the these two films can be considered the true Black Sheep of the Friday The 13th film franchise? It's a subjective matter of opinion, but don't tell that to the fans of the franchise!
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