Scream Queens (2015)

S1 – 9.7/10 / S2 – 8.5/10

Plot Synopsis: Scream Queens follows college Sorority KKT as a killer named The Red Devil returns to exact revenge for dark secrets in the school’s past. A scary and hilarious slasher series set in the College Greek Life system, Scream Queens is one of the best Horror shows and true to the meta-spirit of the Scream movies.

*Possible spoilers ahead*

CLC’s Best #ScreamQueens Episodes: 1. Pilot, 2. Hell Week, 3. Pumpkin Patch, 4. Ghost Stories, 5. Thanksgiving, 6. Black Friday, 7. Scream Again, 8. Seven Minutes in Hell, 9. Chainsaw, 10. Beware of Young Girls

CLC’s Official Series Review: One of the most hyper-stylized and perfect horror/comedy-blends I’ve ever watched, SQ is a darkly-campy college scarefest of magnificent creative aspiration from the creators of Glee + American Horror Story – with perfection of [shockingly-proficient, pop-heavy] cast, meta-analysis of fraternity life and slasher lore, candy-coated satirization, chemistry, ’90’s nostalgia, and a bone-chilling killer + design in The Red Devil enacting some of the most perverse and twisted kills of recent genre history in the 21st-Century. 9.5/10.

Season 1 – 9.7/10

The new Killer-Comedy series Scream Queens is a bold take on the classic slasher franchise Scream, but in a horror TV-show format. The setting of College Sorority KKT for the show is genius as a slasher setting and explores many people’s dislikes about the sometimes exclusionary and cliquey Greek Life system, taken to the annoying-level extreme in the form of the Chanels, led by Chanel Oberlin (Emma Roberts) whose performance as a bitchy and just terrible sorority sister steals the show. Also, The Red Devil steals the show and is one of the coolest and most terrifying Killers in Horror cinema history I would argue. His costume is downright terrifying and evokes both religious and visual terror, especially in his introduction scene when the previous KKT president was sprayed with acid.

The slasher scenes in the show are also extremely well-done and horrifying, most notably the scene where The Red Devil mows over sisters’ heads on the lawn during hazing in the Pilot and any scene where he picks them off in the Sorority House.I also love how the show is a love letter to past legendary horror movies like Psycho when they recreate the shower scene with Dean Munsch, The Shining when they’re chased through the garden maze at Halloween, and the Scream movies with the text Ariana Grande kill. The finale (first part anyways) is unbelievably good, especially the opening reveal as Pete as one of the killers and his IMPECCABLY written monologue and soliloquy on the monster and evil of the Greek-Life system, and his killing by the other Red Devil in the closet.

All of the acting performances in the show are sensational, especially Thad (Glen Powell), Pete (Diego Boneta), Dean Munsch (Jamie Lee Curtis, of Halloween fame), everyone as they over-dramaticize their sorority or staff role but all have hidden darkness and agendas that makes it even harder to determine which of them is the killer. The 90’s setting and true attire and music in the show is just interesting and one of the most popular eras and one that 90’s babies can certainly enjoy. The killers’ rationale and backstory of being the baby in the bathtub is also more well-thought than many slasher backstories.

I also LOVE the comedy infusion into the show and its exploitation of Horror movie stereotypes and over-the-top exploitation of Fraternity and Sorority stereotypes. Thad (and surprisingly, Nick Jonas) are hilarious douchy-frat bros in the series, and sassy Special Agent Denise Hempfield is one of the funniest characters I have EVER seen in cinema, trying to protect the girls with a night stick and telling them to call a 1-800 number and wait until she can be notified if the killer is after them. This changing of the typical horror system while also having quality slasher scenes on its own is true to the Scream meta formula established in the movie franchise. I realize that this may turn off some people either going to the show for pure Horror like American Horror Story or pure comedy, but combining them is the Meta spirit and crossover of genres is enjoyable and pure Scream.

I have to admit, the one flaw I have with this season is the last killer reveal in the 2nd part of the Season finale. Boone (Nick Jonas) is a great reveal and one that I did not see coming as well as the fact that there are two killers both led by Gigi (another great twisting and reveal), and that Pete (once the good guy) was pressured into being a third killer, all amazing and impeccably thought out and written reveals, but the mastermind of the operation is underwhelming in Hester. With the end of the two-part season finale, I thought the killer was going to be Chanel, which would have been AMAZING and timelessly brilliant, but they led people to believe it would be Chanel #5, another would-be great reveal and one that people could not have expected. However, this is all revealed to be a cover-up and framing as the reveal is Hester, which is obvious and one of the first people I suspected and insulting that that was the final climax. However, that can be overlooked by simply ending the season with the first part of the finale where Chanel #5 has been outed and call it as that, instead of watching the 2nd part which is just Hester explaining the whole backstory.

Official CLC Score: 9.7/10

Season 2 – 8.5/10

When it was announced that Season 2 of Scream Queens was going to follow the Chanels and new Characters around a Hospital setting with a brand new Killer, I was extremely hyped. Season 1 established itself as one of my favorite new shows and favorites on tv in general, blending black comedy and Horror in a way reminiscent of the original Scream movies but in a new, original way. Season 2 was set to continue that trend, but in a brand new setting that is famous in horror movies like Halloween, Friday the 13th, American Horror Story, etc. in Hospitals/Asylums and a brand new terrifying killer persona in the Green Meanie (terrible name I’ll admit haha, but amazing and truly evil green Costume with horns and the works).

Being a pre-med student myself, seeing the Chanels try to fit in the hospital setting was hilarious. The season also benefitted immediately from the electric inclusion of famous actors John Stamos and Taylor Lautner as the energetic Dr. Brock and Dr. Cascade, and Nurse Hoffel who is terrifying in her own right. Also, the kill and Horror scenes are even more impressively and meticulously-crafted this season. The shining example of this and perhaps the best slasher scene in the show’s history and one of the best in Horror TV PERIOD is the first Green meanie kill at the end of the S2 premiere in the bathtub. The music, disturbing dancing and playing with his victims by the Green Meanie, setup of helplessness being trapped, curing of the werewolf girl only to become the victim, and reveal of the Green Meanie was impeccable and horrifying in all the right ways this show promised from its pilot.

Also, the killer reveals were all surprising and satisfyingly evil, especially the Wes reveal which was so unexpected and shocking buy brilliantly written in its motivation of Grace’s loss of innocence and her mind in Season 1’s Red Devil killings. Also, the way they showed the sheer madness of the Green Meanie’s by having things like a gameshow where they revealed who killed every victim thought the season was hilarious and the type of meta-horror things the Scream series is famous for. and if even hilariously unbelievable due to their lack of any of the smarts or qualities that would allow them to become Medical students, by far the hardest pre-professional career path on the planet.

That was one of my problems with the season: although it is hilarious to see them try to be doctors, they make it seem a little too easy and unbelievable that something like this could even happen with them not taking the GRUELING undergrad pre-med classes like Orgo, Physics, and Biochem, shadowing, extracurriculars, med admission tests, etc. Even for a fictional series, the way that it was written that Dean Munsch would just be able to get them to become medical students and that there would be no mountains of litigation or Healthcare problems with this is just insane and unbelievable, as well as some of the comments the Chanels (stupid as they are) make like “I hope you saw how easy being a doctor can be” which playfully but still annoyingly undermines the toughest profession on the planet and one where people dedicate their whole lives to the healing of others.

Also, how sometimes the Chanels would come up with cures for some of the diseases is downright insulting and impossible to think of when the world’s top researchers and doctors could not come up with a cure but uneducated college sorotiy sisters could. Also, the fact that they would let medical students like Zayday or anyone who is not a 1000% licensed surgeon do things like surgery with how tough and litigation-heavy the Healthcare and Hospital system is today is just laughable even for fiction like they have to draw a line somewhere. I also find do not like how they killed off Chad Bradwell, one of, if not my favorite character in the whole show and one of the major characters whose absence is painfully noticeable in the rest of the season and if there is a Season 3.

Official CLC Score: 8.5/10