In 1996 horror guru Wes Craven introduced a horror movie that called all other horror movies out on their cliche b.s. This movie was called Scream, which has since become a horror classic over the years. Scream transcended the stereotypical slasher fair, bringing a new fresh spin on horror movies. The original film series starred Neve Campbell as Sidney Prescott, the badass final girl, who broke many rules of being a final girl like constantly screaming and being a virgin. Scream was all about subverting the tired out slasher fare. Flash forward fifteen years from 1996 where MTV has decided to make a TV spinoff of the film, Scream: The TV Series, an attempt of bringing Scream to a fresh audience.
Set in the town of Lakewood a new killer has emerged paying homage to another Lakewood killer, Brandon James . Instead of Ghostface, we now have the Brandon James killer who wears a similar mask to Ghostface. The first episode opens with a scene very similar to the iconic Drew Barrymore scene in the first movie, with Bella Thorne as Nina, a spoiled rich girl getting chased down by the BJK. That’s all Scream: The TV Series is, superficial teens with superficial problems. The only difference between this show and other MTV shows is that the teenagers actually get murdered.
Many fans of the franchise were happy to have a new installment to the series, however, many fans were also dismayed to learn that Wes Craven would not be involved and that this series would be entirely disconnected from the Scream movies. The show may not have characters like Ghostface or Sidney Prescott, but it still contains the spirit of Scream (not literally). This show sets out to tackle the horror genre again but instead of tackling movies, television shows are the target . Shows like American Horror Story, Bates Motel and Hannibal are all referenced in this horror tribute. What are the rules of a horror tv show? These questions are asked in the show, but have yet to be answered.
Scream: The TV Series tries to make a statement about horror tv shows but falls short. Instead of exposing cliches, it just tells you about them with characters who give lengthy monologues boasting about how they are not cliches and then becomes one. The characters are one dimensional ,until later episodes, nothing deep or transcendental happens. The lead heroine Emma (Willa Fitzgerald) remains bland throughout the entire season, a weak protagonist indeed. However, the only characters that do manage to be remotely interesting are Brooke (Carlson Young) an eris who has her entire life fall apart and Noah (John Karna) the geeky guy obsessed with serial killers. Both these characters add life to show, whether it’s Brooke’s ferocity or Noah’s awkward antics, viewers will get some enjoyment out of this show.
Regardless of what Brooke and Noah bring to the table, Scream: The TV Series is lackluster. Most episodes drag on forever with meaningless subplots and bad acting. There is hope, for an ounce of what made Scream so good does begin to show in season finale, maybe this show can become good with a little more action and more wit.