As someone who writes quite frequently, it sometimes seems that the act of planning out what to write can be more enjoyable than the act of writing itself. We’ve discussed in the past how in the mornings I like to start planning my writing agenda for the day, which usually gets derailed by a massive trailer dropping or some crazy bonkers news that needs to be discussed, and I love having a plan. I’m not the Joker in the Dark Knight, nine out of ten times when I’m sitting in front of my keyboard, I have a plan. The plan sits in my head all workday while I shape it out before I start typing. Yet, anyone who writes knows, just because you have a plan doesn’t mean that executing that plan will always go smoothly. There have been over one thousand fifty I Am Geek columns and I can honestly say that not all of them made the transfer from my brain to the page to your eyeholes the way I intended them to. In fact, this whole opening paragraph you’re currently reading… when I planned out my writing for the day this little pre-column stinger wasn’t even a thought. Here I am though, almost two hundred words in discussing how writing doesn’t always go according to plan. The irony is rich.
Why, why am I discussing this? What could this possibly have to do with today’s geeky think piece? Shouldn’t the inner workings of one’s ability to put thoughts to paper be saved for a website that discusses those things? Am I just killing time until I come up with a subject to write about? Am I just testing my brain to make sure I have the brain capacity to write today? Maybe all of the above. But the truth of the matter is this morning, I devised a plan for three columns that could possibly see the light of day throughout the rest of this week. Depending on how life and work and other things pan out but I’m feeling optimistic.
As I was saying though, I had three columns planned out for the week and one column that I would not be writing. I’m sure some of you are wondering, why even plan out a column that you won’t write? Isn’t that a colossal waste of brain energy and to a degree, yes? Especially when the subject of the column that would never be was, Sexy Beasts. A show that could quite possibly set humanity, or dating, back hundreds of years. A show, who wants to make a message that personality is more important than looks and then spends twenty-two minutes urinating all over the idea. At least, the narrator has a sense of humor but fails to cash in on truly pointing out how shallow these people are. Maybe that would make the show more engaging? People being put on task by an anonymous voice who judges them on their shitty behavior. That might be a show I could watch but that’s not the show we got. And now I’m diverting from my writing plan, of course, I am, and writing about what I said I wouldn’t write about.
So, this all begs the question, what am I here to write about today. If I’m not going to talk about Sexy Beasts, anymore at least, what shall we discuss instead? The answer is simple. Let’s talk about something that’s not only worth your eyeholes but your time. Something I’ve already watched and loved. Something that I don’t think enough people are talking about.
Netflix’s Fear Street trilogy.
There are degrees of horror movies. There are the types that ruin your life like The Exorcist, Paranormal Activity (I will not be judged), Jaws, and The Conjuring. Those are honestly my favorite kind of horror movies but finding a new one that meets the grade is like finding a needle in a haystack. So instead, I’ve found great enjoyment in really good crappy horror movies. A movie you can sit through, recognize it’s bad, make fun of the whole way through, but still walk out having enjoyed it. Something like the new Halloween, which I did not enjoy, or Three-Headed Shark Attack, you know, the classics. Horror is such a broad genre and not all of it revolves around the scares. The Fear Street movies tap into that fun side of horror. They’re not bad or poorly orchestrated by any means, but Fear Street wants to make this horror experience fun and they succeed on every level.
There are times where these movies feel part Scream mixed with some Friday the 13th vibes sprinkled with some Stranger Things magic and it all comes together in this pot to form three cohesive, engaging, well-plotted horror movies. Netflix’s plan to film these all at once and release them within three weeks of each other was brilliant. It not only made the movies feel like a small event each Friday but allowed this universe to fully develop in a short amount of time. There are rumors that Netflix wants to take Fear Street and turn it into the MCU of horror movies and I can’t tell you how badly I’m here for this. When the Mrs. and I finished the final film last week, I was instantly bummed that there were no more movies to watch. It felt like finishing a really good season of television and the wait for more was both exciting and a bit sad.
Sure, this is a horror story and there are the occasional pop-out scares to remind you that this is a horror movie and there is a ton of blood and gore. I don’t think I’ve ever seen that many people taken out by an ax before not to mention, Fear Street boasts one of the most inventive horror movie deaths I’ve seen in quite some time. A death so cool it left me wondering, is it better to survive a horror movie or get the coolest death? Something we can discuss at a later time because Fear Street isn’t just about the scares and the gore. This is a movie with a pretty rich mythology woven and expanded between three movies. Each movie providing its own twists and turns until the final act reveals itself leaving you with a mouth full of whaaaaaaat?!
Horror stories are only as good as their characters and Fear Street provides a number of different characters to root for, or root against, whether in the ‘90s, ‘70s, or 1600s, and these characters lead to some truly great performances. Olivia Scott Welch, who I just watched in the overly complex but guilty pleasure fun-filled Panic on Amazon, is wonderful and asked to do a lot with her character and complex emotions. Benjamin Flores Jr.’s Josh is a loveable ‘90s nerd that you want to protect at all costs. And at the heart of these films is Kiana Madeira who just delivers in spades. Hands down the breakout star from these movies, despite that super ingenious death scene, mentioned earlier, and I can’t wait to see what she shows up in next. I mean, hopefully, more Fear Street but that goes without saying.
Fear Street is just a reminder that horror movies can be loads of fun. It was a unique experiment that exceeded at every level and was only enhanced by the “R” ratings. I’m fully invested. I want a Fear Street movie event for the next couple of years. For Christ’s sake, there are like fifty books so there’s plenty to pull from. Netflix has a winner here and this is where your eyes should be focused this summer. Not on shallow people dressed as pandas or beavers going on dates but on a group of kids trying to break a hundreds-year-old curse while avoiding taking an ax to the skull. Seriously, Fear Street is by far a more rewarding experience because dating shows are the type of horror no one should be watching.