Are you a “big dildo,” according to Reddit user LeeF1179, or do you love a good five-quel? In an era of legacy remakes and long-gestating horror sequels, genre fans on Reddit have started to evaluate the merits of the enviable fifth entry in horror franchises.
Most horror films are lucky to get a single sequel, if they get one at all— as noted by Randy Meeks in Scream 3, the horror trilogy is a rarity. Yet, several franchises have accelerated past that, rivaling the likes of the Marvel Cinematic Universe in terms of sheer quantity.
There are the good horror sequels— Halloween 5: The Revenge of Michael Myers, Friday the 13th Part V. Then, of course, there are the stinkers— looking at you, Saw V. User Pepper_Jazz disagrees with me (most of the internet does), noting that the fifth Saw film “adds needed backstory, it was filmed clunky, but needed.”
There’s merit to the question, though, as to whether after five films, any horror series is capable of remaining both fresh and relevant in the eyes of franchise devotees and casual audiences alike. Final Destination 5 is a hallmark of the series, and Scream (now Scream 5) was considered by many to be the strongest entry since the first (though to think that, you’d have to pretend Scream 2 doesn’t exist).
When film and franchise are treated as content, however— more bang, more buck— the omnipresent risk is that a film’s merit ceases to exist. In the worst-case scenario, it might retroactively discredit and undermine the originals.
What do you think, readers? Is a horror franchise capable of sustaining itself to a fifth entry and maybe even beyond? Or, is it widely the case of horror sequels jumping the colloquial shark?
Sound off on Twitter @Chadiscollins. I want to hear your favorite fifth horror sequel, your least favorite, and your comprehensive thoughts on whether Howling V: The Rebirth is a masterpiece or not.