Who is the Most Iconic Horror Villain in Movie History?

Oh Brother kicked off a month of horror with a podcast episode on the recent hit The Invisible Man starring Elisabeth Moss. A departure from the classic H.G. Wells version, but we both thought it was a good take and more modern look than the classic hit.  More recently, we recorded an episode on another Stanley Kubrick classic The Shining loosely based on Stephen King’s novel.

Our first two horror themed episodes feature films that cover as much psychological torture as classic scream fest blood and guts offerings. We plan to round out the month with a bit more blood and gore before culminating with an episode dedicated to a franchise that fits both categories. For our aptly titled Halloween-fest, our ultimate October episode will focus on the iconic Michael Myers psychological meets slasher franchise HALLOWEEN.

But is Michael Myers the most prolific slasher in horror films?  This blog mentions just a few who have made claim to the title of best horror franchise. Numerous films in the horror genre are released each year, but how many survive to become long standing franchises?

Universal Studios were once the king of horror films back in the days of classic monster movies such as Frankenstein, The Mummy, The Invisible Man, the list goes on. For this blog we tip our hat to the past and cinema greats like Bela Lugosi, but we’re going to focus on more modern franchises. 

For the sake of time, we’ll narrow it down to arguably five of the best horror franchises likely leaving out some of your favorites. However, we’re happy to hear your thoughts on what we may have overlooked and why your choice should have made the cut. Complete our contact form here to leave a comment or simply email us at ohbpodcast@gmail.com.

Starting with one of the most game changing frights of all time, Linda Blair became a household name twisting her head 360 degrees and even freaking out a priest in The Exorcist.  With five films to date, The Exorcist was one of the first franchises to really scare the hell out of us!

What’s scarier than a child’s doll? A doll possessed by a serial killer!  With eight films in the series to date, including a 2019 reboot with Mark Hamill stepping in as the voice of Chucky, Child’s Play makes our list. Brad Dourif provided the voice of the Chucky doll for the previous seven films in the franchise.  Fear not because Brad is slated to return in a forthcoming Chucky TV series.  Honorable mention, Brad Dourif not only secures a spot within the Halloween franchise portraying the character of Sherif Brackett in Rob Zombie’s Halloween I and Halloween II, but we featured him in our podcast episode The Big 5 – One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest. With eight movies in the can and more on the way, Chucky might become the new king of all media in the world of horror.

Friday the 13th is a day synonymous with fear and frights.  So, of course the day got its own franchise with Friday the 13th featuring a true slasher favorite Jason Voorhees or was it Jason’s mom? Either way, with 13 films to date (if you count Freddy Vs Jason, Jason has likely spilled more blood than anyone on our list especially when it comes to young adults fornicating in the woods of Camp Crystal Lake. Ch Ch Ch Ah Ah Ah Ah. 

Next on our list is A Nightmare on Elm Street starring Robert Englund as Freddy Kruger. With nine films to his resume, Freddy has a body count to rival any others mentioned thus far. Englund, who played the lead role eight times, proved hard to replace when he stepped aside and let Jackie Earle Haley assume the role in 2010.  Instead of just reshooting the original, perhaps they should have gone with a different script and it might have proved more successful. As of this writing, it has a critics rating of 15% on the tomatometer and an audience score of 43% according to Rotten Tomatoes.

Last but not least, our pick for most iconic horror villain is Michael Myers of the film franchise attached to the spookiest time of the year. No, not Wayne’s World! That’s Canada’s own Mike Myers. We’re talking of course about The Michael Myers of Halloween! Halloween started off as a low budget independent film from writer/director John Carpenter. From humble beginnings to mega franchise status, Halloween tops our list with 11 films to date and two more on the way in 2021 and 2022.  

Carpenter reinvented horror films with his Hitchcock like tension along with some of the most iconic shots from the original feature film that laid the foundation for those that followed. After making one of the most successful independent films of all time, Carpenter was never drawn back into the Halloween franchise director’s chair.  How could he have topped that first outing? Fortunately for us, the franchise returned to its roots in 2018 with Carpenter as executive producer and everyone’s favorite scream queen Jamie Lee Curtis. Halloween (2018) was a direct sequel to the original and we believe one of the best in the series. The 2018 reboot seemed to re-energize a franchise whose fan base seemed split in their response to the much more gruesome blood and guts take delivered by director Rob Zombie with Halloween (2007) and Halloween II (2009). We eagerly await Halloween Kills currently scheduled for an October 15th, 2021 release! The Oh Brother October Halloween-fest with conclude with a full episode dedicated to Michael Myers and Halloween. Party on Wayne! Wait, what?

So what or who did we miss?  Are you a fan of chainsaws?  Or just Saw?  Does the Conjuring spook you more than our choices or is Hellraiser more your speed?  Whatever scares you most, pass it on to “Oh Brother” and maybe we’ll check it out and give it a mention in a future episode. 

Sleep tight and happy frights everyone!

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