"I take orders from the Octoboss."

Jason X

“Guys! It’s okay! He just wanted his machete back!”

JASON X came out almost 20 years ago, and I reviewed it here (well, on Geocities) at the time, which means I too am a frozen relic of the distant past awakened by somebody having sex and destined to be upgraded with a cool metal mask and robot body parts. Or at least I hope so. That would be cool.

I was in a minority at the time who loved the movie (“Definitely my favorite in the series although I also enjoyed the 3-D one,” I wrote). I also correctly predicted that HALLOWEEN: RESURRECTION (which apparently had its trailer playing on JASON X) would not be as good.

I gotta say, Jason’s eyes in closeup are prettier than I expected.

It opens with SE7EN-inspired credits over what looks like the Hell from fellow New Line Cinema movie SPAWN (fire and chains and ancient ruins) that transitions into veins and fluids in a bloodshot eye on which is reflected a doctor with a syringe that plunges into the rubbery rotten flesh of Jason Voorhees (Kane Hodder, STEEL FRONTIER), before the camera passes into the interior of his brain as the drug enters his bloodstream. I much prefer the title sequences of the earlier films, but this is an elaborate digital age one, and a fun way to set up the premise that Jason has been sedated, strapped and chained in an underground facility. (“Crystal Lake Research”!) We later learn they gave up after electrocution, gas, hanging and other execution methods proved inadequate for ending Jason’s life.

And I guess chaining him in the middle of a stadium and filling it with cement was too risky so they plan to cryo-freeze him. It goes without saying that an asshole doctor (David Cronenberg, THE STUPIDS) named Wormer would rather study Jason’s regenerative powers (“I don’t want him frozen. I want him soft”) and tries to stop them. His timing is impeccable – he shows up right after Jason’s off screen Houdini routine, and gets impaled on a huge hook. Heroically, Dr. Rowan LaFontaine (Lexa Doig, JUNGLEGROUND) successfully freezes Jason, along with herself. (The ol’ John Spartan.) Then we skip ahead 445 years, so the doctor did manage to bring peace to the lives of many generations of Crystal Lake residents. Imagine all the skinnydipping that must’ve happened!

It would be funny if we find out in later chapters that he was unfrozen and refrozen a couple times to have other adventures in the interim. But as far as we know he’s out of commission until a science class on a field trip discovers him in “absolute museum quality” while exploring the wreckage of Earth Prime. (They live on Earth 2.) In one of my favorite touches of the movie Jason manages to cut off the arm of comic relief student Azrael (Dov Tiefenbach, HARRIET THE SPY) when his frozen body tips over. (Don’t worry, it’s no big deal to use nano-tech to reattach the arm.)

They take the frozen Jason and Rowan onto their ship, thinking they can revive “the female,” while Adrienne (Kristi Angus, “Bartender,” HARVARD MAN) dissects the male. Professor Lowe (Jonathan Potts, THE JESSE VENTURA STORY, CRUEL INTENSIONS 2) needs money and hopes people will pay to see the oldest living person, but his fence or whatever (Philip Williams, UNIVERSAL SOLDIER III: UNFINISHED BUSINESS) says that nobody gives a shit since there are hundreds or thousands of reanimated people walking around, even if they’re not as old. However, he knows who Jason Voorhees is (your reputation precedes you, Jason!) and recommends selling him instead.

But that’s not gonna happen, because Jason comes back to life. Not through electricity or even technology, but simply by hearing the moans of students fucking nearby. I’ve always enjoyed this blunt acknowledgment of the history of the series. Revived Jason immediately makes his time in space productive by murdering poor Adrienne in an all-timer of a kill (dipping her head in liquid nitrogen to freeze it, then smashing it to bits on the counter) and absconding with a futuristic surgical knife. After a brief stint of the usual murdering of horny teens, he graduates to battling ALIENS-inspired space marines.

By the way, I really like this look for Jason. He once again has chains on him after escaping from bondage, and his broad shoulders remind me of Frankenstein’s monster. The shape of the mask, clumps of fuzzy hair on his head and visibility of his eyes through the mask add a little personality, I think.

The filmatists try to take advantage of every single thing they could think of that Jason could do in the future that he couldn’t do in the present. He walks into a VR simulation and slices up the virtual people trying to fight a virtual monster. He gets blasted by pulse rifles. He impales a guy on a giant drill (it’s not turned on – the body uses its own weight to spin its way down). When they trap him in a cargo bay and head for the space station Solaris, where “60 highly trained professionals are standing by” to take him out, he causes the ship to ram and destroy Solaris, massively escalating his already historic body count. The android Kay-Em 14 (Lisa Ryder, Forever Knight) does superhuman flips and kung fu kicks on him, knocks him through a hole, shoots off a leg and blows off two-thirds of his head and mask (not even the SWAT team in JASON GOES TO HELL did that).

And I always forget this is only the last 20 minutes of the movie, but the medical computer malfunctions or something, nano-tech-tentacles engulf deader-than-shit-Jason, and they rebuild him into cyborg “UberJason” with metal plating that deflect Kay-Em’s bullets (and then he punches her head off). UberJason was designed by makeup effects supervisor Stephan Dupuis, who had applied appliances for all three ROBOCOP movies, so he had some experience in this area.

And there’s more! Jason gets blown out into space like the original xenomorph. But (being Jason) he punches his way back in through the side of the ship. (No windows to throw a corpse through.) His hole causes a vacuum that sucks one character through a metal grate. They create “a diversion” by luring him into a simulation of a parodic VR Crystal Lake cabin where two babes with regionally inappropriate Valley Girl accents (Kaye Penaflor and Tania Maro) ask “Hey, you want a beer? Or you want to smoke some pot? Or we can have premarital sex!” and take their shirts off and get into sleeping bags. We return briefly to what’s going in inside the ship before cutting back to Jason in the middle of whacking one sleeping bag repeatedly against the other and then (in tribute to that classic THE NEW BLOOD kill) against a tree. I remember this scene getting as much of a laugh as a scene could get in the large, mostly empty theater I saw it in.

And the final “only in a sci-fi movie” touch is the way they dispose of him: Sergeant Brodski (Peter Mensah, BRUISER) tackles him on the outside of the ship and drags him burning through the atmosphere of Earth 2. This colonized planet seems to have its own version of Crystal Lake, where a couple in non-futuristic summer wear (Mika Ward and David Cook) see him as a shooting star in the sky, before the remains of the UberJason mask sink to the bottom of the lake accompanied by ki-ki-ki-ma-ma-mas. (Maybe if the rights hadn’t gotten tangled up we could’ve seen the JASON GOES TO HELL slug transform into UberSlug and battle Earth 2 Clone Creighton Duke.

When I wrote my original review I had heard the movie was one of the first features to be shot digitally. In fact it was shot on 35mm film, and its innovation was being scanned to hi-def video for compositing of all the digital effects, which had not been done for an entire feature before. Though many of the sets and effects look cheap compared to most theatrically released sci-fi of the era, it’s clearly the most expensive and ambitious movie in the series, and I think they did alot with the low budget they had.

Like JASON GOES TO HELL, JASON X happened because Sean Cunningham got fed up with waiting for New Line to greenlight FREDDY VS. JASON. They’d gone through more than a dozen writers and still hadn’t figured out a reasonable answer to the question “How the fuck is that even a movie idea?” So Cunningham authorized his son Noel to start developing another Jason-only movie.

Convinced they needed to try something new, the younger Cunningham brainstormed wild premises with director Jim Isaac and screenwriter Todd Farmer. Isaac was an effects artist who had worked on creatures for RETURN OF THE JEDI, GREMLINS and ENEMY MINE before hooking up with Cunningham as special effects coordinator for HOUSE II and DEEP STAR SIX. He had also done the effects for eXistenZ, which is why Cronenberg was happy to do a cameo. Isaac’s directorial career began when he took over for another director on THE HORROR SHOW, and impressed Cunningham with his work. Farmer, meanwhile, was a young writer who had been introduced to Cunningham through JASON GOES TO HELL screenwriter Dean Lorey. He had been writing and rewriting scripts for the company, though none had been produced.

It’s sad to learn from Crystal Lake Memories that neither Isaac or Farmer were as happy with the JASON X as I was. Isaac felt more passionate about the vague idea of a FRIDAY THE 13TH in the snow, and regretted not pushing harder for it. He also resented many changes forced on him by Sean Cunningham, including the return of Harry Manfredini rather than a more modern techno score. Worse, the senior Cunningham was unhappy with the script and kept bringing in rewrites by himself or Lewis Abernathy (who wrote the great opening of JASON GOES TO HELL) during filming. That messed up Isaac’s smart choice to give the cast weeks of rehearsal, and created awkwardness for Farmer when he was on set as an actor. (He has a nice little role as a soldier whose death is simple but funny – Jason slams his head hard against the wall a couple times, and when he lets go of him his head slides down the wall making a perfect squeegie-type squeeeeeeeeak.)

Farmer says that the finished film was true to his story, “but it’s of a different character and attitude. The jokes came out of the action, not out of the characters’ mouths.” He disavows the line, “He’s screwed” after the guy dies on the giant drill. Personally I don’t mind the handful of knowingly cheesy one-liners – what’s cornier are the quasi-satirical future details like saying that hockey was outlawed in 2024 (huh?) or referencing the carnage of “the Microsoft Conflict.”

During the movie’s long post-production period, New Line head Mike De Luca was ousted by scandal. No longer having an executive to support it, JASON X ended up shelved for two years, during which the bar for digital FX was raised, and the movie leaked as a bootleg. When it finally came out it was destroyed by THE SCORPION KING in its second week and then SPIDER-MAN soon after that.

Most reviewers and (in my experience) fans hated the movie at the time. And though it certainly has shortcomings to pick at, in my view many just flat out didn’t get what it was trying to do. They would say “ha ha, Jason in space” as if it went without saying that cross-pollinating the FRIDAY THE 13TH conventions with another genre would only be done accidentally by desperate hacks, and not by people sincerely excited about the absurd possibilities of such a mash-up. Almost none of the contemporary reviews linked from Rotten Tomatoes are still online (you’re off the hook, Mark Palermo of The Coast), but this one from Mark Dujsik of Mark Reviews Movies says, “I think it’s going for the self-aware horror-comedy… but until its final fifteen or twenty minutes, the movie fails miserably at it. Where it misfires is that it still takes the material seriously.”

No offense to Dujsik (who I’m sure has changed as much as I have in the decades since), but I oppose with every cell in my body that idea that JASON X would be better if it kept checking to make sure you knew it knew it was funny. Many of the reviews complain that it’s not postmodern in the same way as SCREAM (“they present the clichés of the genre without mocking them,” Dusjik complained), though we remember them equally slagging movies because they did try to be like SCREAM. In those days many (including me) found it easy to look down their noses at the more openly commercial horror movies, and at best enjoy them as camp. Some didn’t know how to recognize when one of them knew exactly what it was doing.

I have to give the Washington Post points for the cleverness of their headline (“Deep Space Asinine”), though without it the review would read pretty positive. More than one (including Roger Ebert’s) cynically noted that JASON XI would be along shortly. We fucking wish! I guess that proves not everybody was as savvy about how these things work as they thought they were at the time.

But in the ensuing two decades of Jasonlessness (not counting one crossover and one quasi-remake) I do think that an appreciation and understanding for JASON X has grown among horror fandom. (And the series of spin-off novels have become impossible to obtain collector’s items.) I’ve continued to watch it over the years, and at times its charms seem to have faded a little, but inevitably I watch it again and it hits me just right the next time. At the very least, I think we can say that it’s one of the most audacious and successfully executed high concept gimmick sequels in the genre. I mean honestly I kind of like Alan Smithee’s one with Pinhead in space, but this one is put together more consistently. (I guess its superiors would be NEW NIGHTMARE and BRIDE OF CHUCKY.) I also think that among FRIDAY THE 13TH’s this has the most perfect balance of “let’s do something entirely different” and “let’s do something exactly the same,” which is ideal for this genre. If its look and tonal consistency were on par with the early films I think it would be one of the very best.

Isaac went on to direct SKINWALKERS (2006) and PIG HUNT (2008), but died tragically young of cancer in 2012. Farmer has remained a prominent writer of 21st century horror, with credits on THE MESSENGERS (2007), MY BLOODY VALENTINE (2009), DRIVE ANGRY (2011) and TRICK (2019). He also came very close to making a 3D followup to Rob Zombie’s HALLOWEEN II.

To his great disappointment, Hodder has not had another chance to play Jason. But hey man, he got to go out like Mufasa, living on as a star in the sky, and letting us imagine the adventures he would have if space electricity or something revived him to start killing on a whole new planet.

And with that, I end my FRIDAY THE 13TH review series. I hope no one is disappointed that I’m not continuing on to a FREDDY VS. JASON review, but I promise one is in the works. You’ll understand why I’m putting it off when I start posting the series it will appear in, hopefully in a few months.

I did rewatch FRIDAY THE 13TH (2009), but my opinion (mostly negative) did not change from my old review, and the only thing I wrote down in my notes is, “Chewie says, ‘Are you kidding? I have a better shot at fucking a penguin than that girl.’ But what does this mean? Are penguins notoriously hard to woo?” So it does not appear I have any new insights to share.

As of today, and subject to change at any time, these are my series rankings:


(I went back and forth on VIII and VII, so those could almost be a tie.)



I don’t remember consciously thinking of JASON X too much while writing Worm On a Hook, but what I always admired about JASON X – that it crosses the slasher template with another genre and finds where the two overlap – is exactly what I was going for with my slasher/action combo.



well, not in movies, but in review form, when I finally get to FREDDY VS. JASON in an overly ambitious review series I started writing in 2018

This entry was posted on Tuesday, October 19th, 2021 at 7:01 am and is filed under Horror, Reviews, Science Fiction and Space Shit. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can skip to the end and leave a response. Pinging is currently not allowed.

39 Responses to “Jason X”

  1. I need to give this one a re-watch. Like you I’m a different person these days and might enjoy it more. The director also helped with the effects on Naked Lunch. Particularly Mugwump. For that alone I will always appreciate him.

  2. Wow, VIII above VII. Not saying I object or even necessarily disagree but I didn’t get that from the reviews. Quite a twist. Maybe not quite young Jason coming out of the water, but at least a Ron. But where is IX? Anyway, thank you for this series it’s been fun.

    This was the first FRIDAY THE 13th film I saw. If you count it, but don’t count NIGHTMARE ON ELM STREET 4, I’m pretty sure this is the first slasher I saw (if not, that would be HALLOWEEN 4 & 5 a few months later). I didn’t really start watching Horror films until 2004, after which I worked my way through a lot of the key series. In an experience that the 2021 equivalent of YoungPacman2.0 probably can’t relate to, I couldn’t just watch them all instantly and had to watch them in the order I could find cheap VHS/DVDs, or that they turned up on TV rather than chronological order. FT13 took me longer than most, and in the most ridiculous order. IIRC it was something like X, FVJ, II, I, IV, IX, VIII, V, VI, III, VII (then the remake years later).

    I enjoyed it a lot at the time, I remember it mostly fondly, and you’ve done a good job of advocating it here. I’ve enjoyed rewatching these films as you’ve gone through the series, and I even had to, er, “look around” for JGTH, but I must say right now I feel no desire to watch this one. I don’t know if it’s because I watched it in that era where I would get the most mileage out of a DVD rental possible so I feel even years later like I know it pretty well, but I do recall and detect a certain smug condescension coming for it that if anything I think I liked at the time, but don’t really feel like engaging with right now. I do have some nostalgia and fondness for early 00s culture, but little or no respect for it the most part (especially in movies, which hit something of a nadir IMO), which might not help.

    I think that poster is awful. I can appreciate what it’s going for, but it took me a long time to realise it wasn’t Jason with weirdly swollen lips.

    Kaye Penaflor now makes Yoga videos.

  3. Vern, is Jason Goes To Hell so bad it doesn’t even make your rankings?

  4. Curious whether (and, if so, how) you might bucket these into tiers, Vern. For me, the ranking part is so tough and limiting, but if we put them into buckets, I think that illuminates things. Doing this might recognize a couple of things that get lost in rankings: Two things might be ranked differently, but only by a hair/photo finish; two or more movies might all be really close (essentially tied) but all quite different from another cluster of movies. For instance, I’d put IV, VI, and X into a common cluster; I’d put VII and VIII into a common cluster; and I’d put V and IX into a common cluster — in terms of quality / enjoyable-ness.

    I need to re-watch II and III, b/c you rank them so high, but I think I just haven’t seen them enough times. I just remember Shelly really driving me nuts. I know I’d put them above IX and V, but I need to watch them again to see where/how I’d slot them.

  5. J. Effingham Bellweather

    October 19th, 2021 at 11:16 am

    “(David Cronenberg, THE STUPIDS)” *chef’s kiss*

    I like this one a lot. It’s goofy, yes, but at heart it’s a great dark vision of the future, very aware that humanity isn’t getting any smarter or better. Sort of Kubrickian.

    2, 6, 1, X, 4, 3, FvJ, 8, 7, JGTH, 5, 2009

  6. I can’t even really put PART 1 in the rankings, because it’s not Jason. It might be the closest to an actual good giallo-type film, but it’s also the least-Jason, so, I have to treat it as it’s own thing, because how they handle Jason’s look, behavior, and kills is a big part of what I’m looking at. Always feels weird putting it anywhere in a ranking with the rest of the series, like if my task were “rank the Jason F13th FILMS and ANOES (1984) using a single rank-ordered” list. I’m sure I could do it, gun to head, but it feels weirdly arbitrary and muddled to try.

    As for this X. It’s just fun. Bold, different, silly, cheesy (but nearly always in a good way). Delivers the things you like about Jason in a winky, cute way that is actually cute vs. just thinking it’s cute. There are lots of fun gags. Uber-Jason is just goofy and ridiculous, but perfectly appropriate for the look, tone, and “world-building” of the film. The stuff with the simulator is gold, and the deep-freeze-face-smash is imho possibly the best kill of the whole series.

  7. I’m with Pacman 2.0. That VIII over VII twist is the biggest shock of the entire series.

  8. The Undefeated Gaul

    October 19th, 2021 at 2:00 pm

    Do I remember correctly that Jason doesn’t kill anyone anymore after his transformation? I remember being incredibly disappointed by that because I love the UberJason design. While JASON REALLY TAKES MANHATTAN would be great, if they’d be remaking any of the previous movies I’d want it to be JASON REALLY X, just take the exact same concept but live up to its full potential. Meaning at the very least, let us see UberJason take on a full squad of space marines.

  9. I think I realise I don’t want to revisit it because I think it would remind me too much of how I was back then. It’s a very me-in-2004 kind of film. I had a bit of a thing where I thought I was clever for seeing that films like this were meant to be funny where others would dismiss them as “so bad it’s good” and the directors as idiots. And 2004 me had a point, but I didn’t have to be so smug about it and I think it led to me wasting a little too much energy on films I think I knew deep down I didn’t really like all that much. I watched SEED OF CHUCKY, which I feel is a more extreme film along JASON X lines, for the first time a couple of years ago and didn’t much care for it but was aware I would have really gone to bat for it at the time. And I’ve mentioned this before but upon seeing it for the first time last year I really cringed thinking of the mental gymnastics I would have gone through to convince myself I liked CITIZEN TOXIE as a teen. I’m sure JASON X is still better than either of them, but I don’t feel like testing that at the moment.

  10. I want to like JASON X more than I do, but it’s got a SyFy Channel cheesiness to it that I can’t fully get behind. That liquid nitrogen kill is aces though.

    I am also on team VIII over VII. JASON TAKES MANHATTAN is at least bad in a memorable way. VII is just dissolves from my brain immediately after viewing.

    This is the objectively correct and undisputable ranking: 4, 2, 1, 6, 3, X, 2009, 8, 7, JGTH, 5

    If I had to include FvJ it would be somewhere in the top third. It’s more of a Freddy movie, but it’s also way better than it needed to be.

    Still pissed that Paramount had a chance to release the 13th (including FvJ) FRIDAY THE 13TH movie in October on a Friday the 13th, and they dropped it because the RING reboot flopped. Probably for the best, because the details that were released sounded terrible (found footage origin story… zzz).

  11. Honetly my fave F13 movie, I think the pre robot jason look is the best he’s had (robot jason looks dumb as shit but I respect it for being robot jason ya know).
    I like the movies the sillier they get and this was like peak fucking stupid and just absolutely delighted me. But then shove anything in space and I’m game (I’m also a fan of Hellraiser in space)

  12. I’ve got to say, I’m a big fan of this one. JASON X is knowingly a tad tongue in cheek, but it never laughs at the audience. Instead it rolls along, having a great ol’ time, and invites you to join in on the fun (while still indulging in gnarly kills and awesome gore FX). I haven’t mentally ranked the series, but this has to be in my top 3 or 4.

  13. Poor Kane. He really thought he was gonna be in Freddy Vs Jason. But I kinda understand. Kane is huge. There’s no way Freddy would look like any sort of threat to Kane.

  14. Pacman – Oh shit, you’re right, I forgot GOES TO HELL. I decided to add it at the bottom because although the opening and closing are better than V I think overall I’d rather watch V.

  15. I really did go back and forth on the VIII vs. VII. I think VII has less bad things than VIII, but I thought about those things and decided they were more fun to watch than the couple of good things in VII (which is mostly just the last act). But they could switch places if hit by a slight breeze.

    Fred – Isn’t the other guy bigger than Kane? Or is he just taller? He looks to me like he could carry Kane around in a little pouch.

  16. Is he? I thought Yu wanted a more vulnerable Jason but maybe he’s still tall.

  17. To be precise: Kane Hodder is 1, 92 m. and Ken Kirzinger is 1, 96 m.

    It was a pleasure to read all your reviews, Vern. I had planned to watch them all again, but now I feel that I really don’t have to. I’m more of a HALLOWEEN guy, anyway.

  18. Yeah, as realized onscreen, Kirzinger looks like a fucking giant. He is to Jason as Tyler Mane was to Shape, and then some. I need to re-watch FVJ, but I think Kirzinger may actually be the best Jason realization (design / casting) yet — though all of that stands on the shoulders of previous zombie Jason iterations, especially those involving Hodder.

    We don’t appreciate it as much now, but everything about FVJ is a minor miracle. If I were New Line, I’d have been very nervous about FVJ, especially after seeing JASON X land with a thud. Nothing about mid-90s through JASON X gave strong hopes for optimism, and this was well before the present era of remake/soft reboot nostalgia porn. And FVJ is legit fun, entertaining, visually cool, cares a little about the individual franchises and their continuity, and achieves about the perfect mythology/tone-meshing across the two franchises. When I shit on inferior films or missed opportunities (e.g., JASON GOES TO HELL), it’s important to keep in mind that there are films that stick the landing and make it look easy. They finally cracked it w/ FVJ, and it was the biggest hit in either franchise’s history by a wide margin. Miracles do come true.

  19. Though interesting to note that adjusted for inflation\on the basis of ticket sales the biggest hit in either series (domestically) is the original FRIDAY THE 13th.

    Whoever wins, Pamela has already won.

  20. I may be a joyless fuck, but I’ve never been so joyless a fuck that I didn’t love JASON X from the get-go. I saw it in a packed Manhattan theater on opening night and the crowd went nuts, so for years I assumed it was a universally beloved classic. It wasn’t until the commentary track for CRYSTAL LAKE MEMORIES that I learned most fans hated it. Ingrates like that are why we got a Platinum Dunes remake by Marcus Fucking Nispel just a few years later.

  21. Yay, joyful (less joyless, six of one) Majestyk. Can I try to read into your state of mind so long it is your own expression of your state of mind? Rimshot.

    PacMan – You’re right. I had no idea. I still remember USA Today having a headline about FVJ topping the box office and making $30M+, and I was like, holy shit. That was back when I cared about box office (such false consciousness!!), but the encouraging part was it meant a strong demand signal (just like HALLOWEEN KILLS). People will turn out for this shit if it’s done well or looks handsome.

  22. Yeah, I would like to apologize for my epic downer of an argument the other day. The endless cycle of remakes and reboots and blah blah blah is a constant source of sadness to me, as I imagine entire generations growing up without their own heroes and monsters–like if the 80s never created its own pantheon and just pumped out Dracula and Lone Ranger remakes for ten years. That bums me out and is absolutely a trigger for my omnipresent pessimism about the state of humanity. If we can’t even dream our own dreams anymore, what hope is there for us? But that’s my problem and I needn’t be spilling my sickness all over somebody else’s websight. I do this when I know I’ll hate something but can’t stop thinking about it anyway, and it’s a very unattractive and unhealthy quality to have. So on that note, I’m gonna pull the goddamn Band Aid off and just get Peacock for a month so I can watch HALLOWEEN KILLS THE FRANCHISE. Does anybody know if the $9.99 is worth it to gt rid of the ads or is it one of those things where there’s ads anyway and you just got ripped off?

    I truly hate ads. They may make it impossible for me to make it through the CHUCKY show. I hate them so much that I take that hostility out on the show. So if there’s any chance of me enjoying this stupid movie, I need to take every precaution beforehand.

  23. $9.99 is worth it. No ads.

  24. Also, thank you for your patience with me, Majestyk. I see you as a really strong and powerful voice. The world needs your honesty and perspicacity (even if it didn’t need me to use the word “perspicacity”). To me, nihilsm is kind of inversely like free will. Even if free will is false, we need to at least pretend it’s true (note: I’m not saying it’s false…I choose to believe it’s true). Even if nihilism is true, we need to to at least pretend it’s false (note: I’m not saying it’s true…I choose to believe it’s false). Peace!

  25. I would like to correct you on one thing: I am not and have never been a nihilist. I fuckin’ wish I was. What you’re seeing here is the sadness of an idealist realizing over and over and over again that none of the things he believes in hold any sway over the world at large. I still believe in those things but unfortunately reality does not.

  26. Noted. And well-said. You see, we are not so different, you and I (we even have the same birthday!). Inside every cynic (maybe you’re not a cynic either?) is a frustrated idealist, they say. But you know better than most that the badass code compels you to be your best you regardless of whether society is on board with that shit. Congrats on your writing and keeping on. The last 6 years have been in many ways the most difficult and demoralizing of my personal life, with all kinds of shit that I won’t get into. I am undaunted and re-invigorated, not because I’ve found one neat trick to eliminate belly fat or make millions with bitcoin or get the whole world to think Bernie Sanders should be president. I am undaunted because I can only control me, and I can only influence people who want to be influenced, and I just have very little control over much. Which is depressing or liberating and certainly a little terrifying. But like our patron saint, Vern, I can will some of what I believe into existence by sheer tyranny of will. Who the fuck knows if it’s enough — it’s surely not. But it’s what I choose to do (on my good days!).

  27. I think I can more accurately be described as a fatalist: Yes, we are doomed and nothing we attempt will stop that, but that doesn’t mean nothing matters. In fact, if all we are is a blip in the cosmic timeline, than what we do and what we stand for during that blip is even more important.

    I’m not sure if it’s possible to be both a misanthrope and a humanist, but that’s what I consider myself. With no God, creator, or divine purpose giving our lives meaning, what we do in our brief time on earth is all that matter, which is why I am so disappointed in my species. I’d like to give them the benefit of the doubt that they’ll eventually get their shit together but their track record makes that hard.

  28. I am theist, which gives me some hope but also many questions and doubts. Many of the shittiest-acting people are theists, and many of the most caring and altruistic people I know are godless heathens. So.

    All that shit aside, did you ever read “Buddhism without Belief” (writer is an atheist). He asked a question that haunts and challenges me to this day. “Since death alone is certain, and the timing uncertain, what will I do?” [to paraphrase]. You don’t have to accept that statement is literally accurate to view it as a useful meditation.

    To your other point. No, I don’t think you can be a coherent humanist and misanthrope. Your worldview is incoherent. But I often share it, because people are fucking annoying, and I share your introverted tendencies. People overwhelm me with their pettiness, loudness, herd-like behavior, stupidity, meanness. But then I remember that I was once a creationist who voted for George W. Bush. This reminds me that all people deserve love and compassion, including Trump and Hitler (and including me from the past; “hi, me from the past”) and that people can change, even though many/most don’t. You can love humanity while finding most individual humans annoying. The alternative is self-righteousness, which is totally poisonous and delusional. You’re special and so is everyone else.

    In any case, you are here now, so, you can choose to curl into a bawl or be a whiny bitch or be too cool for school, or you can choose to be honest with a constructive bent, using whatever little you-stuff you have to make life less shitty. Because constructivism creates its own momentum (see again Vern and his community).

    Sorry, now I really am on that Tony Robbins shit. Too much coffee, etc.

  29. Fred – We’ll have to get into this when I eventually get to FREDDY VS. JASON, but my research on specifically why they recast has not been fruitful. I swear I remember reading at the time that Yu wanted someone bigger than Hodder because he wanted a more exaggeratedly larger-than-life Jason, and I also remember a quote like you referred to, that he wanted vulnerable eyes. But when I really tried to find the specifics I could only find quotes from Yu that the decision to recast was over his head and that he didn’t know the reason why.

  30. I don’t see the contradiction. As a humanist, I believe that, in the absence of a higher power, it is every human’s responsibility to live an ethical life that advance the species as a whole. But as a misanthrope, I believe that almost all of us are far too fucked in the head to ever make good on that responsibility. (I do not put myself above that assessment.) So I believe in the tenets of humanism as a platonic ideal, but I don’t believe they will ever be adequately implemented here in reality.

  31. I remember hearing that Yu wanted someone bigger, but I heard that through an old IMDB message board post in 03 or 04, so not really a reliable or substantive source.

    The extent to which I recall old IMDB post from that era upsets and delights me in equal measure.

  32. Majestyk, I think that’s fair, and I don’t want to split semantic hairs too much further (me, split hairs?!). I guess my thought is that, at a certain point, if you’re a true-blue misanthrope, you would not want to save humanity (the extreme case would be an eco-terrorist who wants to cleanse the planet of humans to save the planet). I would consider myself a humanist (and a theist!) who is continually frustrated by and disappointed in many humans (including myself), but also sometimes pleasantly surprised and delighted. We’re a mixed bag, but this is our hill, and these are our beans.

    PacMan, that is right re: Yu, although I think Yu sometimes tried to blame New Line and pretend his hands were tied. Yu was right, though. Bigger was better here.

  33. Vern et al.

    See minute 2:30 here

    In Extremely Rare On-Set Interview, Robert Englund Explains Why Kane Hodder Wasn’t Cast in FREDDY VS. JASON

    In Extremely Rare On-Set Interview, Robert Englund Explains Why Kane Hodder Wasn’t Cast in FREDDY VS. JASON

    See item #9

    13 Things You May Not Know About Freddy Vs. Jason

    You can see our other Nightmare on Elm Street lists here, and you can see our other Friday the 13th lists here.  Today, it’s time for Freddy Vs. Jason (2003), aka, the bastard child of a thou…

  34. For Majestyk and everyone else who hates ads, please look into setting up a Pihole on your home network. They’re pretty easy to get up and running. Unfortunately they don’t help when a streaming service hosts the ads themselves, but they work great everywhere else.

    Alternatively, ProtonVPN recently implemented a feature called NetShield, which functions similarly to Pihole and blocks malware, ads, and tracking. Plus you get the added benefit of hiding your IP address from the scumbag corporations that have pretty much ruined the internet and society. (There are certain drawbacks to VPNs, of course, like my messages here almost always getting routed to moderation. Sorry for making extra work for you, Vern!)

  35. Jason X was my first Friday– probably caught it on basic cable a bunch of years ago. I definitely remember liking it, and I should definitely revisit it. Every franchise should have at least one sequel in space.

    Majestyk: I only have the free Peacock tier, but I watched 4 Chucky movies on it in the last week and only 1 of them played any ads at all. And total ad time was 2 minutes. (Then again, this may also depend on which device is used to watch it.) So maybe you can save a few bucks and try the 4.99 tier for Halloween Kills. I would hope they’re not shoving ad breaks into the brand new movie that’s presumably meant to boost subscription numbers.

  36. And speaking of Kane Hodder: I always heard his name spoken in reverent, hushed tones as “the” Jason, so when I finally watched the series, I was surprised he’s only in four of them, and they’re the four a lot of fans don’t even like! Yet these latter Fridays are also the ones that seem to have created the definitive Jason portrayal– big, undead, unstoppable. And I imagine a good chunk of that is Hodder’s doing. I reiterate that I find the organic growth of this series fascinating. Most film series won’t get 6 or 7 installments to finally achieve their apotheosis. And I appreciate they were still taking big swings in the 9th and 10th episodes.

    Thanks for the deep dive on this series, Vern.

  37. Bill: I did my research and apparently they ARE in fact shoving ads into the brand-new movie that’s meant to boost subscription numbers. I would rather not watch this movie at all than watch it with ten minutes of ads so I will pay the extra five bucks just this once.

  38. Also here is the “expressive eyes” idea, which is as told by Hodder:

    Kane Hodder Was Actually In Freddy vs. Jason - But No One Noticed

    Many horror fans were disappointed when Kane Hodder was replaced as Jason Voorhees in Freddy vs. Jason, but it turns out, he was actually in the film - just not as Jason.

  39. Had to revisit this. This is a great review of a top-of-the-line Jason Vorhees motion picture. This thing Vern says about JASON X perfectly captures my experience w/ FREDDY VS JASON that I was trying to describe yesterday: “I’ve continued to watch it over the years, and at times its charms seem to have faded a little, but inevitably I watch it again and it hits me just right the next time. “

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