Welcome to the fifth post of my Scenes to Be Seen series of Freddy Krueger deaths. At this point in time we’ve covered how Freddy gets to people in a very close and personal ways. If you recall the first two Elm Street movies, Freddy wasn’t all to creative with his deaths. He was merely a menacing demon that took his victims into a dream world where he would kill them. But in A Nightmare On Elm Street 3: The Dream Warriors, the idea of Freddy making kills was pushed to new heights. Which makes perfect sense. It wasn’t enough for Freddy to kill his victims with just his razor claws. The deaths had to be more personal. They had to be memorable and things we could relate to.
You see, this is one reason why Friday the 13th or even Halloween never appealed to me as much as the Elm Street series. Don’t get me wrong, I love those series. But Elm Street hit me harder. I was too young to be a camp counselor. I wasn’t going out getting drunk and having sex even when I was a teenager. In fact, I still don’t do that. Most of us were never popular and we weren’t close to being anyone on those screens. Sure, some of you were popular and did all those things… but you aren’t the norm. But most of us do relate to the kid who thought himself a grand wizard or the karate champion! We do identify with the kid that wanted to be an actress. To see the kid who loved puppets get his veins ripped out and turned into strings! That got to me cause I loved puppets!
That’s why Freddy is so cool. While everyone in most horror films are very exaggerated characters that die on the premise of “being in the wrong place at the wrong time.” Freddy attacks people we can all identify with. You see, with a basic slasher film you have tropes. You have the jock, the virgin, the drunk or druggy. You have the horny guy and you have the flirtatious girl. They’re all pretty. They’re all basic and they all die. It’s all good and great horror death fodder. But we’re never afraid that “it could happen to me.” There is never a personal connection with the victims other than the delight in seeing a pitch fork coming out of their chest.
But Freddy Krueger is pushed beyond the norms of what we expect in horror. You don’t have to be the jock, or the preppy girl. Those things don’t matter anymore. What these movies do is make it real for us all. Oh you have asthma? Sucks to be you bitch, Fred is gonna suck the life out of yah! You’re in a wheel chair and think you have magical powers! BOOM! You’re dead too! You’re afraid of bugs? Fred is gonna turn you into a cockroach and then squish you. You have eating problems? Freddy has the perfect answer for you.
These movies can make you think, how would Freddy come after me. Cause we all dream and we all have particular aspects to our life that give us an identity. We all have fears and weaknesses that Freddy can exploit. So ask yourself… how would Freddy kill you?
For me, I actually find myself thinking that I would go out the same way as my friend Mark does in A Nightmare On Elm Street 5: The Dream Child.
Now, A Nightmare On Elm Street 5: The Dream Child is kind of an odd movie. The entire plot is absolutely insane and doesn’t make much sense. The film takes place very soon after the fourth movie with Alice and Dan living together. Alice has visions of how Krueger came to be and also finds out she’s pregnant. But get this! Freddy is using the baby inside Alice to be the pipeline into her friends dreams! Thus giving Freddy the ability to regain his powers and then to use… the baby… to do… something? All this time, the ghost of Amanda Krueger is stuck in a limbo and wants to lock Freddy away into some sort of timeless spiritual prison.
Ok, so that is an odd plot story and The Dream Child is one of the Elm Street movies that is one of the least liked. Story alone, it’s a twisting ride of confusion. But seriously, is it any more odd than the other Elm Street movies? To be honest, I do appreciate this movie, but in a more ‘it’s real campy’ kind of way. The entire thing feels like a realistic cartoon. People’s faces stretch and change like Bugs Bunny would. You can tell it’s all coming from a more comedic premise. Nothing, is actually scary… at all. But that doesn’t mean it’s not good stuff.
You see, I love to draw. You know those kids in school who could draw anything? Well that was and still is me. I never took art classes. It was just something I was born with. Actually, I would make money by selling drawings to other classmates. It was awesome! So the character Mark is a skilled comic artist… just like me! Freddy uses this to his advantage. Mark goes into a black and white comic book world and when confronted by Freddy. Mark turns himself into the Phantom Prowler. An actual comic book character that Mark has been working on for some time.
This is all real funny because if you were to take Freddy on in the dream world. The last person anyone would ever want to be is the Phantom Prowler. The name alone is stupid. When I hear the name ‘prowler’ I instantly think of a peeping tom staring into girls locker rooms or Joe Biden sniffing a kids hair. Also, why does the Phantom Prowler look like a hobo? Most super heroes have cool outfits that extenuate muscles and make them look hard core. But the Phantom Prowler looks like he’s spent a long couple years in the Sahara Desert on some hippy commune. His entire outfit is shit brown and looks like he made it from the felt aisle in a Michaels. The only thing intimidating about this guy is his rank smell.
And what is with the robotic guns? Is the Phantom Prowler some paraplegic that can’t raise the guns up himself? He needs the help of these mechanical arms to make sure they are aimed just right. The entire concept is laughable. Like a poor mans version of the Punisher.
Even then, why would you pick a hero with only guns. He could have turned into Wolverine and just sliced Freddy into pieces. But no, Mark is an artist and like all artists, he’s prideful. He doesn’t want to be a hero with actual skill or anything. Instead he turns into the Craft Corner Cock that he came up with himself. Mark sees himself as the Phantom Prowler or more like, who he wants to be. So he does and he blasts Freddy away! But we all know this is useless. How many Freddy kills have we seen where Freddy leads our victims on in thinking they’re victorious. You think some clown that likes to draw is gonna take Freddy on? No way dude! Freddy rebounds and brings Mark down a notch by being something better! SUPER FREDDY!
My gosh this is hilarious. But then again, I can admire the entire premise. The best is how Freddy turns into Super Freddy. The guy playing Super Freddy is Michael Bailey Smith and its cool because this is actually the only time another person has worn the entire Freddy outfit. Other people have played Freddy before but as kids or pre-death Freddy. Freddy in his entirety has always been Robert Englund. But this guy comes in wearing the costume and everything! He’s all jacked and has a lightning bolt going across his chest. He kind of reminds me of an old hero like Superman of The Shadow. He says some stupid lines that mock the entire world of Mark and then in good fashion, slices Mark up like he was paper.
It’s a little odd that he turns into a paper Mark and the color drains. I guess what we’re witnessing is a shot that is from Marks point of view and then into someone reading the comic? Because after Freddy slices Mark into pieces, it pans back to the real world with Marks hand laying bloody and lifeless on the comics! It’s also reveal that the entire death is drawn and written into the comic. So Mark actually drew the entire thing? Man that would have been cool if they had shown Mark drawing the comic in some sort of demonic possessed sleep trance. Like his eyes were rolled back and he was aggressively drawing the cells of the comic. But what we have is quite fine.
Sure it’s not the best death of all the kills in the Elm Street series. But it’s one that I appreciate the most. I could see Freddy coming after me this way and for that I gladly honor this scene.
Thanks for reading my post for Scenes To Be Seen! This is a fun series and if you would like to read the other posts from the other four films prior to A Nightmare on Elm Street 5: The Dream Child, then go ahead and check these post!