Slash or Crash: Which Horror Movie Villain is the Best?

Slash or Crash: Which Horror Movie Villain is the Best?

Megan Mannelly, Managing Editor

The spooktacular season of Halloween has left us with some of the greatest (and cheesiest) horror movies in the genre. From the horrific idea of an arcane clown hunting down people to show them their worst nightmare to the cliche slasher knife murderer, there are a multitude of characters to both simp and scream for. 

So, out of all the classic horror movie characters that slash our screams and make our blood go cold, who is the best? Of course, this is an opinion piece, but, fear not, I am going to base this off of how easy it is to defeat them, how well written the characters are, and what motivates them to stab away.  But be warned, there are spoilers ahead.

Starting with one of the most generic slasher films, Scream is centered around the character of Sidney Prescott, a high school student in the fictional town of Woodsboro, California, who becomes the target of a mysterious killer in a Halloween costume known as Ghostface. Scream was considered unique at the time of its release for featuring characters who were aware of real world horror films and openly discussed the clichés that the film attempted to subvert. But, what about Ghostface himself, the main movie villain behind the Scream movies? Well, although many different characters dawn the murder mask and bloody knife, they all seek one thing: killing Sidney Prescott. Even so, the motivations behind the bloodlust are grey wish wash at most, ranging from peer pressure to the want for fame. Motivations aside, could high schoolers today defeat such a murderer? “No. He seems too smart,” says one doubtful senior, though the responses seem to be a mix of both. “Yeah, duh. He only tries to break in and then stab you to death. All you need is a big dog and a good security system and that man is toast,” states another high school student. Although the responses are doubtful, the actual movie does kill off Ghostface, making him one thing some horror movie villains aren’t: mortal. The writing on the actual character is… well… It’s alright considering this slasher film is part-time gore part-time satire. The character fills his role and blends well with the actual aesthetic of the movie. 

Now that we have talked about one murderous teen, let’s talk about another one, shall we? Carrie is a completely different story from Scream, one that shows the brutal life of a bullied high school girl having to deal with a hyper-religious mother. There’s no other trauma like  Religious Trauma! Well, put on your red cap and cover yourself in pigs’ blood because we are going to dive deep into the chilling story of Carrie. In this chilling adaptation of Stephen King’s horror novel, withdrawn and sensitive teen Carrie White faces taunting from classmates at school and abuse from her fanatically pious mother at home. When strange occurrences start happening around Carrie, she begins to suspect that she has supernatural powers. Invited to the prom by the empathetic Tommy Ross, Carrie tries to let her guard down, but things eventually take a dark and violent turn in the form of a prank as pigs blood is dumped on her head. In a fit of rage, Carrie uses her powers to lock the students of her high school in the gym and set the building ablaze. Holy smokes, call that hot-headed. Carrie is a perfect example of when the victim finally snaps, and this movie shows that wonderfully with the flames, blank stare, and drilling music as the building is set aflame.  So, what is her motivation behind these dreadful killings? Well, after years of enduring horrible treatment from both her home and school life, Carrie finally snapped after a bucket of pigs’ blood was dumped on her head. “I would be pretty mad too,” says one Thunderbird high school student, “It was in front of her entire senior class as well.” Pigs’ blood is one way to welcome a classmate, but, how strong is Carrie? “Carrie’s main power is telekinesis, a very powerful ability to move objects or persons by the force of her mind alone,” explains horror movie fandom website, Hero’s Wiki, “She has demonstrated her power [with] many actions: blowing up light bulbs, blowing up her bed, levitating pipes, closing doors and more.” Obviously having mind bullets is one giant plus to her overall strength, mix that with a complete loss of sanity and you’ve got yourself a very strong villain. This strength is further shown as, at the very end of the movie, Carrie’s house topples down on top of the poor girl, only to show a hand rising out of the rubble in the final scene. 

Now that we have covered some angsty teenagers, let’s switch from killer teens to teen killer as we bring in the third horror movie villain, Michael Myers. According to Wikipedia, “Michael Myers is characterized as pure evil, both directly in the films, by the filmmakers who created and developed the character over nine films, and by random participants in a survey.” Pure evil is definitely a high standard to live up to, but Michael Myers seems ready to prove that pure evil can exist.  He first appears in 1978 in John Carpenter’s Halloween as a young boy who murders his elder sister, Judith Myers. Fifteen years later, he returns home to Haddonfield to murder more teenagers. But the true question is: why? Why did he choose to dawn the Captain Kirk mask and raise a knife? Well, to put it lightly, the movies in the Myers cinematic universe write off his willingness to kill as “being insane and wanting to feel scary.” That’s it. Well, driving forces of homicide aside, how strong is Michael Myers, really? “Michael might be one tough cookie, but (depending on canon) he’s still mortal,” says, a movie debate website. Tough or not, he seems to be just a lunatic on a quest for blood (despite being extremely strong and resilient). 

So, out of all of these knife-slashing, blood-curdling Halloween killers, which is the best? “I’m gonna go with Carrie. She kinda looks like a girl from my work,” says one Thunderbird senior. Carrie is quite the opponent, having the ability to move things with her mind and showing extreme resilience. “I don’t know… Ghostface gets simped over a lot on TikTok,” says yet another student. “Michael Myers for sure. He is a giant man,” states a final student weighing in. There seems to be quite a lot of debate on who would win. So, who do you think the best villain is?