Today should be the day when the five films in the Saw series, starring the hood-eyed Tobin Bell as the evil Jigsaw, blow past eleven Friday the 13th flicks, starring whatever actor or stuntman they can shove behind the hockey mask as vengeful Jason Voorhees, to become the most successful horror franchise in box-office history. That means a take of more than $320 million. Talk about gross. Come on scare freaks, are you going to take that lying down? It's time for a vote, and I'm not just setting up Jigsaw against Jason. Here's the deal.
You don't have to play the two money leaders. Nothing against Jigsaw, it's just that torture porn isn't my thing. And is Friday the 13th really the best the scare charter out there? Consider these other choices for best horror villain:
Freddy Krueger (A Nightmare on Elm Street) One, two, Freddy's coming for you. Since 1984, Freddy — in the person Robert Englund — has been out there haunting our dreams with his disfigured face, striped sweater, brown fedora, and metal-claws in a leather glove. (My personal favorite nightmare)
Michael Myers (Halloween) From John Carpenter to Rob Zombie, directors have been obsessed with the psychology of this mass murderer since the series began in 1974. The masked Michael Myers is referred to as the "The Shape." It's minimal, but terrifying.
Leatherface (The Texas Chainsaw Massacre) Since his debut in 1974, this cannibal has been wearing masks made of human skin, every one of them mean scary.
Pinhead (Hellraiser) After four movies and several direct-to-video sequels, Clive Barker's Cenobite killer, played by Doug Bradley, can still stick pins in the toughest cushions.
OK, there you have it. I'm not counting Hannibal the Cannibal (Silence of the Lambs) or Norman Bates (Psycho) since those characters transcend horror. But feel free to mention Candyman, Re-Animator, Captain Howdy or any other freak that suits your twisted fantasies.
Here are my questions:
1. Jigsaw vs. Jason — who gets your vote?
2. Who is really the scariest character in any horror franchise?
3. Name the sequel in a horror franchise that equals or surpasses the original? That's so the rest of us can rent it for Halloween. Treats, please, no tricks.