Comic Review: Freddy vs Jason vs Ash – The Nightmare Warriors

***WARNING: SPOILERS AHEAD***

Introduction:
The Nightmare Warriors is the 2nd ‘Freddy vs Jason vs Ash’ mini series from Wildstorm comics. It carries on from where the original mini series leaves off.

In the showdown at the end of what we will call “Season One”, the scene is set for the show down at Camp Crystal Lake, where the three titans are in the midst of a fight to the death.
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Ash scrambles for the Necronimcon, sends Freddy through a portal into the Deadite dimension, and then in classic fashion, drowns Jason in the lake, along with the Necronomicon.
With Freddy and Jason defeated, the evil book now lies at the bottom of the frozen lake, and out of sight of anybody that could pick it up and read from it

Or is it…?

Plot:
In the midst of a new top secret government project involving the Necronomicon Exmortis, there are two psychiatrists that are trying to locate and bring together survivors of past encounters of with Freddy and Jason, to form a group called The Nightmare Warriors, and with the help of a certain ‘Chosen One’, make a march on Washington, to fight pure evil, and defeat it once and for all.

Review:
Where do begin with this mini series… Quite simply put, its very good, and is a great way to follow on from the first series.
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As soon as Jason comes back into the mix, literally, all hell breaks loose and the carnage at the end of the first comic continues.
As you’d expect from a comic with these three characters, its pretty non stop action throughout.
With this comic book having the title ‘Nightmare Warriors’, this is of course, a group of people who have fought Freddy or Jason and survived.
Dr Neil Gordon (Elm Street 3) returns in the role of Psychiatrist, and is still trying to figure out a way to stop Krueger for good. Also from the Elm Street series, the protagonist Alice who features in Elm Street 4 & 5 and her son Jacob are featured.
As a special treat, and with the power of the Necronomicon, some of those who have perished throughout the Elm Street series get resurrected to come and help finish the job. CUOF2605
Joining the Warriors, is Tommy Jarvis who features in Friday the 13th parts 4,5 &6, and is joined by his franchise counterpart Tina, from Friday the 13th Part 7. They are of course joined by the chosen one… Ash Williams from Evil Dead.
The team are led by Maggie Burroughs, who is the Psychiatrist leading the Warriors. To all Elm Street fans, if Maggie’s name sounds familiar, it should do.
Something I enjoyed in particular is that every character gets there moment in the sun. There isn’t anyone who is there for fodder… But in saying that, this comic does have a bit of ‘The Walking Dead’ complex, in that even the characters can die.
The essence of the characters is captured so well.
The script written for Ash is brilliant. I found myself reading his lines with Bruce Campbell’s voice in my head at every turn.
The same can be said with Freddy Krueger. Its hard to compare his character to any one of the Elm Street films as there is a piece of him from each one.
Jason, as expected… he’s a man of few words, but rest assured he does a hell of a lot of killing. Something else to mention about Jason, is that in this comic, he is sporting a new, rather fetching get up which I found… Shall we say… at first I found ‘interesting’, but really grew on me as the series went on.

I do need to say as well, that the art work in this series, has definitely improved.The first series has a brilliant story, though in the earlier comics, the art work lacked consistency. Whether that’s down to different artists working on the project is unknown, but in the ‘Nightmare Warriors’ series, there are vast improvements. The little intricacies of the characters are captured brilliantly. The first series and ‘The Nightmare warriors are both well worth a look.

Each of these characters also has their own series of comics that are like these, independent from the films, and are like the Freddy vs Jason vs Ash series… an incredibly good read.

The Best Of Freddy Krueger

It’s no secret, that my favourite horror franchise, is Nightmare On Elm Street.
The man in the dirty red and green sweater, is the villain that keeps on tickin…
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Throughout the Elm Street films, Freddy has had so many brilliant moments… classic moments… and dare I say it… Epic moments (I hate that word).
Whether it be something he’s said, or a really inventive, imaginative kill… which of these are his best?
I have taken on the mammoth task, of going through video, after video of Freddy’s banter, and the slaughter of the teenagers on Elm Street… and picked my favourite Freddy moments.

1. Nightmare On Elm Street 5 : Dream Child
…Freddy’s Re-Birth…

…”It’s A Boy”…

2. Nightmare On Elm Street 3: Dream Warriors
…Jennifer’s Big Break In TV…

“…Cut The Prime Time Bitch…”

3. Nightmare On Elm Street 3: Dream Warriors…
…A Puppet Called Philip…

Freddy Krueger: The Puppet Master

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4. Wes Craven’s New Nightmare
…Julie’s Death… 

…”Ever Played Skin The Cat?”…

7qn5zpzotenprns8e6d1ui5ahiiFun Fact:
The glove worn in this film, was the only glove to feature a 5 blades, instead of the normal 4, with the extra blade being on the thumb. ‘Robert Englund’, the actor who plays the role of Freddy Krueger, hated the re-designed glove, and found it very ‘clunky’ and difficult to use and operate.

5. Nightmare On Elm Street 2: Freddy’s Revenge
…Jesse’s Transformation…

…Bye Bye Grady…

6. Nightmare On Elm Street
…Tina’s Death…

…”This Is God”…

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7. Nightmare On Elm Street 4: …Dream Master
…Roach Motel…

…”You Can Check In, But You Can’t Check Out”…

8. Nightmare On Elm Street 3: Dream Warriors
…Wizard Master Death…

…”Its Back In The Saddle Again”…

9. Nightmare On Elm Street 2: Freddy’s Revenge
…”You’ve Got The Body”…

…”And I’ve Got The Brain”…

10. Nightmare On Elm Street (2010)
…Jesse’s Death…

…”We’ve Still Got 6 More Minutes To Play”…

Honorable Mention
…Nightmare On Elm Street (2010)…
…Alternate Ending…

This gets an honorable mention, because this is a gem, that should have been used in the original, but for some odd reason was left out. The reboot, for all its misgivings, would have, in my opinion, been elevated with this ending. The whole “Welcome To My World” speech in the theatrical ending, just feels like such a cop out, and a total let down. I hope you enjoy the alternate ending as much as me.

 

My Favourite Villains-Part 1: Freddy Krueger

When I was 12, the glorious day I waited so long for, had finally arrived.
I was about to watch, a horror movie, for the first time.
The film, was the ‘Wes Craven’ directed, ‘Nightmare On Elm Street’.
I had only ever seen posters & cardboard cutouts of Freddy Krueger so I had no idea what was in store.

It was a life changing experience.
I sat and watched the first 4 films in one sitting.
Then the next day after breakfast, I watched the 5th film, Freddy’s Dead
and New Nightmare.
I was hooked.
I went to bed scared, for 2 years. But quite simply, I loved the
films, and what’s more, it was this group of films, that introduced me to the world
of other horror films, and the horror genre as a whole.

For those of you, who don’t know about the ‘Nightmare On Elm Street’ films, or have only seen the 2010 reboot and thought… This is complete nonsense… here is a closer look at the character, known as Freddy Krueger, and why, he is one of my favourite horror villains.

The Background: Freddy Krueger

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In the Nightmare On Elm Street films, The part of Freddy Krueger is performed by Robert Englund.

Frederick Charles Krueger, more commonly known as ‘Freddy’ is the illegitimate
son of 100 maniacs. A nun, called Amanda Krueger, worked at
‘Our Lady Of Sorrows’ Asylum for the criminally insane, in the town of Springwood.
In 1941, over the holiday season, fate it seemed, would take its course, and
Amanda would accidentally, be locked in.
She was repeatedly attacked, and raped, which resulted in the unholy conception.
When she was found, she was barely alive, but pregnant.
Subsequently, that wing of the hospital was closed.
Frederick Charles Krueger, was born in February, of 1942, and given up for adoption.
Freddy’s new legal guardian, was a drunk, and would dish out daily beatings.
Throughout his childhood, on top of the beatings, Fred was badly bullied, and
exhibited strange behaviour, taking his anger out, on small animals.
As Fred grew older, he learned to endure the pain of the beatings… Even liking it,
telling himself, the secret of pain, is stop feeling it, and to start using it.
In his late teens, Freddy would kill the man who adopted him.
After a time of living rough, he got a job working working as a janitor at a
power plant, and living in the boiler room.
It was around about then that the murders began.
Fred was abducting children from Elm Street, taking them to the boiler room,
and torturing, raping and killing them.
The mutilated bodies of the children began to turn up and the spree of murders
started a media frenzy, earning Freddy the nickname, of ‘The Springfield Slasher’.
The police needed to act and act they did. They caught, after a lengthy manhunt,
the Springwood police, arrested Freddy at his boiler room.
The trial of Freddy Krueger should have been a clear case, with the amount
of evidence against him.
The case was dismissed after the defence attorney, produced
a piece of evidence, showing that the search warrant to apprehend Freddy, was not
signed correctly at the time of arrest, and Freddy was set free.
The parents of Springwood felt cheated, and wanted justice, no matter the cost.
They followed Freddy back to the boiler room, covered it petrol, set it on fire, and watched him burn.

The video below, is Nancy’s Mum, telling the origin story, of Freddy Krueger,
and how he met his fiery end.

He was a monster before he died, but then he became something so much worse.
He was able to invade the dreams, of the teenage kids on Elm Street, so he could take his revenge on the parents that killed him, by killing their kids in their dreams, where they’re defenceless.

What makes him so scary, firstly, are the physical elements, his burnt face, the dirty red and green sweater, the brown hat, and most of all, his glove, manufactured by the man himself, with 4 razor sharp knives for fingers.

The worst element of all, is  fear. He feeds on your fear.

When you sleep, he invades your dreams, and there is nothing you can do to stop him.
He will terrorise, and torture you for fun. Then only once he’s had his fill, will he kill you.
That is what makes him so scary, compared to other horror movie villains.
He doesn’t just kill you. He breaks his victims down mentally. He knows your
fears and will use them against you.

For me, there is one reason I watch horror films, and that is, to be frightened out of my mind, by what I have just seen. Freddy Krueger does that on every level.
Many have tried, but you can not kill him.
Freddy Krueger is pure evil.
And pure evil can never die.

Nightmare On Elm Street (2010)

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One night last week, my wife and I, watched the 1984 release , of the Wes Craven directed, Nightmare On Elm Street. It was airing on ‘TCM’ in HD, so we couldn’t pass up the opportunity.

We had only ever seen the reboot once. That was on the very first night, of its cinematic release. Due to the literal heartache, we felt after seeing it, we couldn’t bare the thought of ever watching it again. BUT… the night after watching the original, we took a deep breath, opened our minds, and dived into the world of turd, that is the Samuel Bayer directed, 2010 reboot, of Nightmare On Elm Street.

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I want to start by saying that the film on a whole is not actually that bad, if you were to class it, as a stand alone slasher film. It doesn’t work as an Elm Street film.                             There are many, many reasons, that this reboot didn’t work. Let’s have a look as to why.

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It’s easy to blame the leading man, but contrary to popular opinion, where the movie is lacking, is nothing to do with Jackie-Earle Hayley’s portrayal, of the man of your dreams. He is a fine actor, and his performance is fantastic. He hasn’t tried to copy Robert Englund, which is great. It shows, that as an actor, and a professional, he has put some thought, research and effort, into his role as Freddy Krueger. The first problem with the reboot, is that you don’t feel outright fear. It is sorely lacking. But that’s not Hayley’s fault. He can only read the lines that he’s given, and do, as he’s directed.

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The second reason, that the movie doesn’t fill you with outright fear, is the make up. I understand it’s a reboot, and they wanted to go their own way with it, but it looks like absolute garbage. You don’t look at Hayley’s make up, like you did Englund’s, and automatically feel fear and dread, before he’s even slashed someone, or opened his mouth. That’s not to say, they should have copied Englund’s make up, but at least, use it as a point of reference, and build from there. This just isn’t good enough.

Thirdly, is the plot. This was supposed to be a reboot, but for the most part, the sequence of events, is lifted straight from Wes Craven’s original. It shows a major lack of creativity, on the part of either the writer, the director, or both. Though in saying this, it has to be said, that in a couple of the death scenes, they do let Freddy out the box, and there is that element, of ‘playing with his food’ so to speak… For example, the first kill on Dean in the café, and the 3rd kill on Jesse when he’s in prison, and the line from Freddy “we still have 6 more minutes to play”.

Deans Death Scene

Jesse’s Death Scene

To talk a some more about the problems with the plot, far too much of Freddy’s back story is revealed. Yes, the reboot should try it’s best to be different from the original, but I think completely changing the origin story, was a big mistake. Less is more. Yes, make it different, but let our brains picture the horrible things he did… That provides fear.

Problems with the plot? Lets look at the writing of the script and screenplay. Hired for the job, was a feature-length film novice, in Eric Heisserer. Now don’t get me wrong, in all credit to the guy, he has gone on to write such films, as Final Destination 5, and the new delightfully dark and terrifying, Lights Out. The problems with the writing, is that, like most films these days, there was too much studio involvement. Heisserer, didn’t really have room to work with. He was only given 1 month to have everything ready, and with strict guidelines from New Line, to bring in their target audience.

Next, the director used for this film, was Samuel Bayer. This is a man who has only ever directed music videos. And the majority of, in my opinion, not very good ones. This was a huge mistake. Bayer, up to this point, had never directed a feature-length film before, never even mind, a horror film. I have to ask the question… Why didnt you use the alternative ending? It is 100 country miles, better than the ending that was used for the theatrical release.

The reasons for me preferring the alternative ending, will be evident when you watch it. .

 

Its rumoured that there is going to be another reboot, coming at some point, the writer who did ‘Orphan’, is rumoured to have taken on the responsibility. Lord only knows who will be cast as Freddy Krueger.

 

Horror Movies: Alternate Endings – Part 1

WARNING: SPOILERS

Often when movies are made, the director can be undecided, at what to do with the ending, and will go ahead and film a few different scenarios, to end the film with. We’re now going to delve into the world of ‘The Alternate Ending’, and see the ‘what could have been’ endings, to some of your favourite horror films.

1. Nightmare On Elm Street (2010)

The theatrical ending of the reboot, is dull, lazy, borrowed from other films of the franchise, and completely predictable. The alternate ending is a far better experience. When Freddy restrains Nancy, and turns his face back to his living face, before he was burr ed, the first time Nancy sees it, you can see the fear and terror on her face, as she looks and quickly turns away and starts to scream, after looking at the face, and looking into the eyes of the man, who had abused and tormented her, as a young girl. When it comes time for Nancy to exact her vengeance, this ending allows you to see the full extent of her rage and anger, as she finally gets her long awaited revenge.

2. Orphan

In this alternate ending, we see the ‘Final Battle’ come to an end, and then mother and daughter escaping. As good as the original ending is, the outcome is predictable. What you get with the alternative ending, is something different, and rather chilling. I can understand it not being used, as it could pave the way for pointless sequels, where we already know the big twist.

3. Friday The 13th: Part 9 – Jason Goes To Hell

Part 9, and supposed end for the Jason Voorheea saga, was a little bit of a let down, with very little of Jason being shown in the film, apart from at the very beginning, and at the very end. The alternative ending, is different mainly in the part where Jason is being dragged to hell, in this case by hands shooting from the ground, and also, little demons. The parts with one of the 2 remaining protagonists, being dragged down to hell is different as well. I can understand why they didn’t use this. The demons look like absolute garbage. They would maybe work in a film like ‘Ghoulies’, but most certainly not for a franchise such as this. The theatrical ending though, was the part of the film that provided us all, with a real gem, that 10 years later, would give us the fans, the long awaited, Freddy vs Jason in 2003.