12 July 2012

Friday the 13th the Series 1987-1990 (TV Show) - RETROSPECTIVE

In 1987 Paramount pushed the limits of Horror on prime time with their new hit TV series entitled Friday the 13th.  Probably half the people (including myself at the ripe age of 7) were thinking they were bringing the movie series with Jason Voorhees to a weekly show.  That was not the case and actually the show had nothing to do with the movie franchise at all.  Actually it was a pretty clever ploy to get people to watch.  When it came down to it Friday the 13th the Series was an excellent show and did not need to have a link to the movie franchise to become successful.  With a rather unknown cast and bringing subject matter to prime time that had not been done before.  When the show was taken off the air after 3 seasons it was not because the ratings were low or because one of the main cast had left.  It was because of protesting from religious groups and Paramount and Frank Mancuso Jr felt in this case it was better to give in rather to start a Holy war.  The show was cancelled abruptly before the 3rd season was finished.

The main cast consisted of simply 3 people: Mickey Foster (Louise Robey), Ryan Dallion (John D Le May), and Jack Marshack (Chris Wiggins).  The premise of the show was Mickey and Ryan inherited an antique shop  from their Uncle Lewis whom they did not know while he was alive.  They have a run in with Jack Marshack one of Lewis's old friends and the person who supplied his antiques. Jack clues Mickey and Ryan in on the fact that Lewis made a deal with the devil and all of his antiques were cursed.  Having just sold a ton of stuff off, now Ryan, Mickey  and Jack have to track down everything that has been sold and put it back in the stores vault.  The Vault is the only place that can keep the evil away from everything. Ryan is all about wanting to do this for a living but Mickey not so much.  She has a fiance to get back to and a whole other life, but she reluctantly agrees to stay on so the three of them can track down all the items in Lewis's manifest of sales.

SEASON 1:  Premiering on Sept. 28th, 1987 with the episode entitled "The Inheritance".  This episode explores the death of Uncle Lewis and the emergence of Mickey and Ryan.  Ryan being an immature college dropout who is giddy to have his own store and Mickey a stuck up, prissy brat looking to just sell everything off and rid herself of this burden.  Throughout the season starting in episode six the 3 of them have to deal with the spirit of the Evil Uncle Lewis trying to stop them from undoing everything he did.  Notable episodes that are a must watch in this season are: Shadow Boxer, Scarecrow, The Baron's Bride, and The Quilt of Hathor.  The Quilt of Hathor is my personal favorite from this season.  It is a 2 parter that takes place in an Amish community with Mickey and Ryan trying to recover a cursed quilt with the markings and colors of the devil. Whoever sleeps under it gets to kill their enemy in their dream.

SEASON 2:  Premiering on Sept 26th , 1988 with "Doorway to Hell". This episode deals with Uncle Lewis once again.  This episode is the final time they deal with him directly.  He is mentioned throughout the series but they seemed to have abandoned the storyline for later episodes.  Lewis lures Mickey and Ryan to a house he owned that he is going to use as his portal back to the world of the living if he can get all 3 of them there for his master Lucifer.  This was a great way to kick off another great season of Friday. Later in the season we see the introduction of a new character to help them at the store by the name of Johnny (Steve Monarque).  Must watch episodes from season 2 are: Heads I Live Tails You Die, 13 O'Clock, The Playhouse,  and Wedding Bell Blues.  Wedding Bell Blues is my favorite out of the season and it is also the episode that introduces Johnny.

SEASON 3:  Premiering on Oct 7th, 1989 with a 2 hour show entitled "The Prophecies".  This episode is probably the best of all of the ones from seasons 1 and 2. A very intense 2 hours that takes place mainly in France were all 4 of them have to battle a preist of Satan fulfilling the prophecies for the arrival of Satan.  This is also were we see the departure of John D LeMay's character.  While this is the last season for the show it was still going strong in the ratings, but when it was moved to an 8 O'clock time slot it was a prime target for religious groups.  While they could have fought to keep this on the air, Paramount chose not to fight this battle and cancel the show with not even the full season being aired.  While the show did lose alot of momentum when John left it was able to recover with some great episodes.  Must watch episodes are: The Prophecies, Crippled Inside, Bad Penny, Year of the Monkey, and The Charnel Pit.  My favorite from the last season is The Prophecies even though it was the last for the character of Ryan Dallion. 

Friday the 13th the Series really is my favorite TV series of all time.  I have all 3 seasons on dvd and  have watched them endlessly.  Almost as much as the Sci Fi channel and the Chiller channel used to play them.  Every now and then you can find an episode on one of these 2 channels but not often anymore.  There had been rumblings on the internet at one time that they planned on having the final episode artifact to find would be a hockey mask.  Leading them to the most brutal mass murderer in history.  Wonder who that could have been?  I'll give you 3 guesses!  Stay Twisted everyone!

1 comment:

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