Largely because it’s an MTV series, the TV version of postmodern horror favourite Scream has, for many people, slipped under the radar. Released originally at the end of June this year the first series is now over and fans are eagerly awaiting the second which as been confirmed for release around April next year.
Not a continuation of Scream as such, the TV series follows a similar story and a similar group of teenagers but in many ways is almost more interesting than the film itself. Nothing can quite beat Scream, at least the first two or three films anyway (after that it goes downhill!) but the TV series does a very good job of strengthening the story of the killer. We have a Jason-esque ‘villain’; a deformed boy who died in a lake and is seemingly back for revenge as he slowly picks off the friends of his love interest’s daughter.
Without going in to too much detail about the story so as not to give anything away, it is incredibly difficult throughout the series to work out who the killer is and their motive. The ending is somewhat disappointing but at least most people won’t have spent the whole series knowing the reveal (unless they’ve stumbled upon a spoiler). The first series manages to avoid many of the storylines that would be obvious for fans of the film and it has a very different story and character arc to the film itself, which makes it almost a completely separate thing all together.
Those of you hoping for tongue in cheek laughs you will be disappointed here. The TV series, whether deliberately or not, lacks that tongue in cheek humour that made the films so entertaining. It does maintain its self-referential nature with constant references to films and TV, as well as the token nerdy character stating at the beginning that a slasher film could never be a TV series. These devices were used so well in the films and have been continued in the series which will no doubt delight fans.
With Wes Craven as executive producer and a variety of very talented writers and directors, including Ti West, you can rest assured that the Scream TV series is done well. It may have lost the appeal that the films had for older audiences as the focus is even more on teenagers and it has fallen in to a Teen Wolf style trap which is very MTV. That’s not necessarily a bad thing, but it does very much seem like a series for the younger audience. With plenty of gore, however, it is definitely worth a look for horror fans.
Scream: The TV Series is a decent TV version of a well loved horror film. It’s different enough to be interesting and new for those familiar with the films but similar enough that fans can pretty much guarantee they’ll enjoy it. The mystery is done very well and it’s nigh on impossible to guess who the killer is until it all starts to come together at the end. A series that will keep you guessing, Scream is definitely worth checking out this Halloween.