Thursday, January 29, 2009

Friday The 13th, Part II

The first Friday the 13th film was a big success, and therefore, the filmmakers were eager to make a sequel. Their first big problem was coming up with a way to continue the story, since we last saw the killer (Mrs. Voorhees) being decapitated at the end of the previous flick. To take up the slack, they decided to make the villain Jason himself, which proved to be a lucky choice, since he would grow to be an iconic horror movie character.

The movie opens with the first movie’s Final Girl living in a city/town…somewhere. You can assume it’s near Crystal Lake, since Jason, making a rare trip to town and away from the lake, shows up to kill her. Nice to see him out and about, he won’t take in the bright lights again until Part VIII.

Jump forward five years, and Crystal Lake is being re-opened as a training school for camp counselors. (They train people for that?) I would imagine the new owner got a deal on the real estate. In short order, the counselor-wannabes are being stalked by Jason, who still has issues over watching Mom’s head go flying. Mayhem ensues, the body-count rises, and a new Final Girl turns the tables on Jason by pretending to be his mother.

One of the interesting things about the series is the evolution of the Jason character. By the end of the series, he will be an unkillable supernatural creature, able to heal from any wound. (He can also teleport, but that seems to be more from a laissez-faire attitude to continuity than any real talent). Here he is just an ordinary human being, albeit one with a penchant for skewering people with sharp objects.

Although Jason becomes the series’ continuing character, he does not yet have his signature hockey mask. He’ll get it in Part III.

Part II establishes one of the physical laws of the Jason universe: When a young girl is alone late at night near a dark lake, she will strip naked and go for a swim. This does not appear to be true in our version of reality.


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