His Name was Jason, the Official Great Stories Friday the 13th Blog.
A Dive Into the Absurd
By Tom Vanner
Let’s face it the rational that was potentially there to keep the series going has gone out the window. The second half of the series has brought “Friday the 13th”, the horror movie into horror Sci-Fi. Things start getting weird here, but that’s O.K, it’s a movie. Don’t hurt yourself trying to make sense of it. That’s my job. I’ll do the best I can but realistically today’s lesson is just about the movies.
“Friday the 13th Part VI Jason Lives” has the return of…, that’s right you guessed it, Tommy Jarvis. Thought I was going to say Jason huh? The title should have been a give-away. A younger looking Tommy Jarvis from the previous movie finds himself in such disbelief that Jason, the guy he himself buried a machete into the side of his head, is dead. Even after his next encounter with Jason was an imposter in which again Tommy himself killed. He just can’t believe Jason’s dead. Only way to find out for sure obviously is to dig up the corpse and poke the body with a stick. He does just that, the only appropriate time to do something like this though is obviously at night, with a chance of thunder storms. Rain cools you down from physical labor, Lightening provides lighting and the thunder is for dramatic effect. Anyway at Jason’s Grave Tommy finds what most people would expect in someone’s grave, the person, dead, in a casket. Tommy can’t handle the feelings he has after seeing Jason again for the first time since he was a child and using as much rational as possible stabs Jason with a 5 ft long rod iron fence post. Que in the Lightning and as the title suggests, JASON LIVES! (Dr Frankenstein laughing in the back ground).
Now, electricity to the heart does save lives. Usually an actual rhythm is needed in order for that to work. Ventricular Tachycardia or Ventricle Fibrillation, but we are not nit pickers. The movie said it brought Jason back well, then by golly it brought the bastid back. I would also like to apologize to anyone who watches medical dramas on T.V if there is a flat-line across the monitor, there is no shocking. Another spoiler alert, the paddles aren’t a thing anymore. Just insult to injury, Santa and the Easter bunny are also fake. Oddly enough the tooth fairy, she’s real.
Back to the carnage, Jason gets up, puts on his mask (you’ll note the red dashes have returned) goes and starts killing again. Several people die in various ways and the final showdown is a head to head battle with the reigning champion in this corner Tommy Jarvis and the contender in this corner Jason Voorhees, in a winner takes all fight to the Death. Tommy somehow gets a huge rock into a boat and secures chains to it, then he waits for Jason in the middle of the lake. Jason goes on in after him and Tommy lights the water on fire (he had gasoline…calm down). Jason jumps out of the water attempting to pull Jarvis in but is met with a chain then Tommy locks it around Jason’s neck and the huge rock gets thrown overboard pulling Jason down under water with it. Jason gets in hit in the face with the Boats propeller and that is the demise of Jason.
Until of course, Part VII “The New Blood” is my personal favorite and has one of the better story lines. A very young Tina who happens to live off Crystal Lake and who happens to have telekinetic abilities, starts the movie while in fear and angry at her father. Tina screams at him from a canoe and the dock he was standing on collapses, killing him. Later in Life Tina has become a late teenager early 20’s grown woman. She, her mother, and psychiatrist return to her childhood home, to make an attempt to harness and control her telekinesis. Naturally there are group of teens planning a weekend of booze, drugs and sex for a birthday celebration next door. Tina, one night while getting pushed a little too hard by her doctor, freaks out and goes out by the Lake to let out her frustrations. I’ll give you one guess who her powers accidentally awakens… none other then Jason. Jason emerges from the water and off he goes dismembering drunken horny teens. The end battle comes, well at the end, Jason vs. Tina, and the guy trying to get with her from next door. The guy and Jason are going at it on the dock, when Tina uses her telekinetic powers to resurrect her father from the bottom of the Lake, he breaks through the dock in a moment my son would describe as “WHOA”, and Tina’s dad drags Jason back to the bottom of the Lake.
This movie is pretty special. Jason played by Kane Hodder for the first time and the only actor to ever repeat the character of Jason with 4 appearances, has a new life about him. Kane adds an attitude to the character that gives Jason a more intimidating and predatorial presence about him. Jason also has a violence about him now that is unmatched, thanks largely in part too, Kane. This is evident with one of the series best kills, the sleeping bag kill. What is special about this kill is a sleeping bag is not a weapon; it’s a warm comfort zone that brings coziness into the wild. A “safe space”, if you will. In Jason’s eyes it’s a convenient way to turn an early 20’s female into a baseball bat. The other fun part of “The New Blood“is it’s the first time Jason really has any competition. Never before this movie had Jason taken such a beating. He gets electrocuted, hung, shot with a nail gun, a roof collapses on him, and burned, which Jason loses his mask prior to the burn, because Tina is a jerk. The burn scene is a history making event in cinema. It was the first burn scene to show actual ignition, and it was at the time the longest Burn scene to appear in a movie, clocking in at approximately 45 seconds.
The Part 7 zombie Jason is in this guy’s opinion the absolute best looking Jason. With an obvious decay effect, the skeletal structures of Jason are protruding through his flesh and clothes. Remember when Jason took a boat propeller to the face in part 6? Yeah they covered that with a chunk missing from the lower left hand corner. Because of this Mask damage Kane had to actually do 3 in half hours of make-up every day of shooting to have full facial prosthetics throughout the entire movie.
Onward and Up-ward to “Jason takes Manhattan”. I guess they figured 8 movies in the same camp would just be a little ridiculous. This time around Teens on a boat trip, O.K class do we know what the teens will be doing?… That’s right getting drunk and having sex. So this High school class trip managed to get from Manhattan to Crystal Lake. Hold up, Manhattan is off the coast of a body of salt water (aka the freaking ocean), Crystal Lake is a body of fresh water, and a lake. How does a boat get from…..whatever it’s a movie. The boat is dragging anchor (apparently it makes a better drag then anchor) it catches a power cable, because we all know best place to keep electrical lines is the bottom of a Lake, and Jason happens to pinned on the Power lines via the dock. Unlike the shark in Jaws 2, Jason is brought to life by high-tension power lines and not killed by them. Electrical intervention saves the day again!! See that Jason trumps Jaws. So Jason all pissed off, electrocuted and masks less, finds his way onto the boat via the conveniently dragging anchor. He locates a new mask (Yay!!! Hits you right in the feels), and goes on killing all in attendance on the boat until we arrive in NYC. Once in NYC Jason takes a tour of Time, square, kills a bunch of people, he kicks a boom box, kills more people and we get to the end sequence where the movie has to come to an end. So the two survivors and Jason are in the sewer, thankfully the Ninja Turtles were out of town so Jason couldn’t kill them, but the surviving couple find a way to flood the sewer and drown Jason, because you know, that has worked so many times before. This weird thing happens where Jason like reverts back to being a child, like he morphs into the child version of himself. Some people think the child morphing event is like a “dream” where Jason has finally met his end and has reverted back to the age in which he died. If you’ve been following the blog the last few days you should be able to pick out the approximate age of Jason’s death. What is that age class? Very good about 33 year’s old, see that I knew you were paying attention. Fun Fact, when Jason is puking in the sewer, that is Kane Hodder actually really throwing up. A cool party trick he can do at will.
What is nice About Part 9 “Jason goes to Hell”, they stopped trying to bring him back and just said, “Screw it no more explanation, he’s just here”. This Movie gets weird, very weird. First Jason “dies” at the beginning, via hundreds of bullets, because nobody has ever tried shooting him before. However now Jason has a new ability, to possess? Yeah, ok let’s go with it…Jason can hop from body to body so he can continue killing people. Unfortunately Kane Hodder only plays Jason for maybe 20 min tops in this movie. He does however get to be killed by Jason. So in addition to being able to possess people, there is all of a sudden a whole list of rules. Why not? Let’s complicate crap now. Only a Voorhees can kill a Voorhees , Jason must be killed with the knife in this manor before this time, don’t feed him after midnight, and if you say his name3 times while looking into a mirror a butterfly gets his wings. This is probably my least favorite of all the movies, but it’s there, we can’t deny it so we move fourth. In order for the “rules” to even be applicable because like all movies this one has to come to an end at some point, Jason now has a sister who was killed, but no worries Jessica, Jason’s niece is around. Yep who would have thought? Jessica at the end ultimately ends up killing Jason with the dagger, Jason is dragged to Hell. And all that remains is his mask. Which gets pulled down into Hell by whom? Freddy Krueger. (Played by Kane Hodder).
Finally we have Jason X, which obviously by the way the 9th movie ended is defiantly “Jason in Space.” ….. It was late 90’s every movie went to space in that era, including the Leprechaun. Again Jason is fine, Hell isn’t that bad when you’re the most bad ass mother ever. Jason no longer possesses people which is fine but he does regenerate. This is discussed by Dr’s, oh yea maybe I should let you know hey Jason has become a lab rat. With little to no explanation how they capture Jason, a research team has determined, That Jason is indestructible. Well no kidding. Jason and this girl end up becoming cryogenically frozen, after wait for it… Jason goes all Friday the 13th on everyone in this military lab and kills a whole bunch of people. Jason and Rowan (the frozen girl) end up falling into a cryogenic tube (similar to Fry, for the Futurama fans out there.) get frozen and are not found again until the year 2455. A class trip is going to the baron waste land known as earth in search of ancient humans. So the class finds Jason and Rowan then decide lets go ahead and take these two home. They do their research and find out who Rowan and her male companion are and of course decide, why not, lets defrost them. This decision quickly becomes one you might call regretful. These future science people have amazing technology which is used to fully revive Rowan (Jason as you probably would guess doesn’t need that nonsense.) Once he warms up enough and remembers who he is, Jason kills a bunch of them with relative ease. A cyborg female receives an artillery upgrade and she goes ahead and all but eliminates Jason. Jason is seemingly dead with part of his head blown off along with a variety of other parts. Remember that cool technology I was telling you about? Yeah, guess where Jason landed. Now Jason gets a huge upgrade and the indestructible force that is Jason becomes more indestructible. Ultimately they are unable to kill Jason but Brodski (a main character) sacrifices himself to drive Jason back to Earth without space ships, in hopes of Jason burning up upon re-entry. I’ll give you three guesses which body of water Jason lands in.
Jason X had in my opinion the 2nd worse looking Jason. The mask seemed like it was too small and Jason regenerating skin and flesh just isn’t my cup of tea. Uber Jason was pretty bad ass not gonna lie. They had found a way to literally turn Jason into a tank, and he was pretty menacing. The metal skull mask by far surpassed the potentially child sized mask he had prior in the movie.
So that is Friday the 13th the series. We still have a couple of more days until the most ceremonious of Fridays. Come on back tomorrow and see what else I can ramble on about.