Cookies help us deliver our Services. By using our Services, you agree to our use of cookies. Learn More.

Dumb Things In The Friday The 13th Series Everyone Ignores

When it comes to classic horror movies, it'd be impossible not to mention Friday the 13th. Not only is it one of the largest horror franchises ever built (12 films, a TV series, comics, books, and video games), but it boasts one of the most recognizable antagonists in the history of the genre. Jason Voorhees — who only came to be known in his current, hockey mask-wearing form in the third movie installment — is a slasher villain like no other. With a kill count in the hundreds, Jason holds the title of being the most prolific killer in the genre.

He's also one of the most traveled. Over the years, we've seen Jason Voorhees move from Camp Crystal Lake to Manhattan to Hell and then to space (and the future). Granted, some of these trips have been pretty ridiculous, and some we'd rather forget about altogether. These movies have been known to get pretty goofy. But while the Friday the 13th series tends to become more absurd with every entry, a lot of it is acceptable, given the franchise's established rules. There are things, however, that are more questionable than others. And some things in Friday the 13th are so dumb, they just can't be ignored. 

Pamela Voorhees is ridiculously strong in Friday the 13th

Fans of the original Friday the 13th are well aware by now that Jason Voorhees was not the franchise's first villain. That honor rests firmly with his mother, Pamela Voorhees (Betsy Palmer). Actually, the whole idea of a supernaturally powered, undead madman wouldn't come into play until the sixth installment, Jason Lives, when he's brought back from the dead by horror magic means. For that first film, though, the terror of Camp Crystal Lake was rooted entirely in reality — and in the grieving psychosis of a single woman.

There's just one problem with Pamela Voorhees being solely responsible for taking all those sex-crazed teens' lives, and it has to do with physics. Pamela is not a large woman, by any means. Betsy Palmer was just 5'7" and definitely not a bodybuilder. So unless she'd been spending her free time power lifting, there are at least a couple of her kills that come into question. When it comes to Bill (Harry Crosby), Pamela pins him to the back of a door with archery arrows. Bill is a tall guy, so hoisting his body up onto a door would take considerable strength (assuming, of course, that he didn't jump into position while Pamela shot him). So, too, would throwing Brenda (Laurie Bartram) straight through a window. It makes no sense that Pamela could do either on her own.

Did no one notice the murders in Friday the 13th Part 2?

The events of Friday the 13th Part 2 left nine people dead and an unmasked killer on the loose. Ginny (Amy Steel) is carried out on a stretcher, which means that by the end of that film, the authorities have gotten involved, at least in some capacity. With that many people dead, there should've been more of a commotion than there obviously was.

When we return to Camp Crystal Lake in Friday the 13th Part III, it's immediately after the events of Part 2 have unfolded. Jason has escaped to a nearby grocery store and picks up right where he left off with the killing. At another part of the lake, Chris (Dana Kimmell) and her friends have arrived at her family's cabin for a lakeside getaway. 

At this point, there's already been news coverage of the killings that took place the night before (we see it on the shop owners' TV). So if there had been both police and media at the lake, wouldn't there be some sort of presence at its entrance? Considering there's a stack of bodies and no suspect in custody, one would think the Crystal Lake police department would be doing something to keep people from going in or out, but apparently not.

Jason Voorhees and mistaken identity

Unlike his mother, Jason Voorhees was blessed with both height and heft, and the actor who played him in Friday the 13th Part III, Richard Brooker, was around 6'3". So yeah, Jason isn't a small dude. But somehow, he seems to be one of those guys who people look at and mistake for their friends and loved ones all the time, because it happens twice in Part III.

The night that Jason escapes and heads for the store on the lake, one of its owners, Edna (Cheri Maugans) actually sees him outside. Granted, he's a little bit of a distance away, but he isn't wearing his mask at this point, and still, Edna thinks he's her husband, Harold (Steve Susskind) — a man of average height, stockier build, and with perfectly normal facial features. 

Later on, Vera (Catherine Parks) sees Jason in his now iconic hockey mask and assumes it's her friend Shelly (Larry Zerner) because he'd been wearing the mask earlier. But Shelly is noticeably shorter and has a vastly different body shape than Jason does. Shelly also has hair, which, hockey mask or no, is a thing you would probably notice.

How do single knife wounds work?

Friday the 13th: A New Beginning has one of the highest body counts in the franchise — over 20 kills, depending on whether or not dream deaths are included. The last hour alone sees so many murders that it becomes difficult to keep track of (or even care about) who's being taken out. So Jason — "pretend" Jason, as this movie monster is actually a paramedic named Roy (Dick Wieand) — gets creative with his weapons. 

Still, a good number of those deaths come as a result of a single stab wound, be it from a machete, an ax, or just a regular old knife. That isn't so much of a problem — we've seen plenty of stab wounds in the Friday the 13th series. The problem here is that every victim dies instantly because of a single blow. Maybe it's because so many kills had to fit into such a short amount of time, but it doesn't make sense to just drop dead from a single stab, even if it is from an ax. It makes for some unbelievable — and incredibly anticlimactic — on-screen deaths.

Telekinesis is the same thing as necromancy in the world of Friday the 13th

Pitched as a sort of mashup with horror classic Carrie, Friday the 13th Part VII: The New Blood takes the supernatural aspect of the Jason Voorhees lore and pits it against a different kind of supernatural character. Instead of facing off against a regular teenage "final girl," Jason would go head to head with Tina Shepard (Lar Park Lincoln), a young woman with telekinetic abilities.

Thinking about it, the concept itself seems almost too far out there, even for Friday the 13th. Stephen King's Carrie is a completely different kind of horror movie than what the Jason franchise had evolved into by 1988, and the two feel horribly mismatched. Still, it could have worked, had the writers played by the rules governing telekinetic abilities. 

Tina is able to move objects with her mind, and sure, we'll buy into the idea that she can also cause water to boil, which accounts for her father's lakeside death early in her childhood. But when she inadvertently resurrects Jason while thinking about bringing her father back, and then actually does resurrect her father in the final sequence, it takes telekinesis into necromancy territory. Now, Tina isn't just a cheaper version of Carrie White. She's a cheaper version of Pamela Franklin, too.

Confusing waterways in Jason Takes Manhattan

Contrary to what its title might have you believe, very little of Friday the 13th Part VIII: Jason Takes Manhattan actually takes place in Manhattan. Mostly, it takes place aboard the Lazarus, one of the worst looking party cruisers ever built and host to the Lakeview High School graduating class. The boat is headed to New York City from Crystal Lake when Jason sneaks aboard and begins his killing spree.

In one of the franchise's most head-scratching confusing plot points, Jason Takes Manhattan surmises that Crystal Lake is somehow connected to the Atlantic Ocean. Sure, there's the slim possibility that Crystal Lake is an open lake, one which drains into a river and then eventually into an ocean. But even if that were the case, the film suggests a cruise ship could get from the lake to New York in a day. We know Jason himself has teleportation abilities, but in order for Jason Takes Manhattan to make any sense whatsoever, he'd have to be able to extend those abilities to an entire ship.

Toxic waste rejuvenates in the world of Friday the 13th

Jason Takes Manhattan is an absolutely bizarre movie. Just how weird does it get? Well, after a brief chase through the streets of New York, final girl Rennie (Jensen Daggett) and Sean (Scott Reeves) make their way into the sewers, where they run into a city worker who informs them that the entire sewer system floods with toxic waste every night at midnight.

Using this knowledge to their benefit, Rennie and Sean are able to incapacitate Jason with toxic waste fluid just long enough to get a head start out of the sewers. When midnight rolls around, Jason is caught in the flood, catches fire, and reverts to his childhood form. 

So, not only does New York have a problem with toxic waste flooding its sewer system every night like clockwork, the stuff is so deadly that it reverses time on bodies. It's like the horror movie equivalent of high-end facial cream, rejuvenating Jason's deformities in death.

A sudden and weird Voorhees backstory

Jason Goes to Hell: The Final Friday was the first film in the series after Paramount sold the franchise to New Line Cinema, so it makes sense that its filmmakers would want to go in a different direction with the character. So they decided to turn Jason into a disembodied evil spirit that possesses people and forces them to kill. Sure, that's fine, but what doesn't make sense is to retcon a whole family history into Friday the 13th that affects the entire Jason mythology.

In Jason Goes to Hell, not only does Jason Voorhees now have a half-sister named Diana (Erin Gray), but Diana has her own daughter, Jessica (Kari Keegan), who herself has an infant. On top of that, the movie tries to establish the idea that if Jason can possess the body of a family member (living or dead), he can be resurrected. It makes for one genuinely uncomfortable scene involving a demon fetus and a recently deceased Diana, and it all goes down inside the Voorhees house, which is a place that no one's ever mentioned in the history of Crystal Lake before. How has no one known about this family — or their home — until now? It isn't like they've been hiding out in another state all this time. They've been at Crystal Lake for years.

Jason never really dies

Everybody knows that you can never truly kill Jason Voorhees. He might seem dead for a moment, but he always finds a way back. In fact, there have been numerous occasions when Jason should've died but returned on account of some sort of witchcraft. And that's fine and believable within the Friday the 13th mythology. However, there are those times when Jason dies, and then suddenly, he's not dead, with no explanation whatsoever, and the audience is just supposed to forget it ever happened in the first place. These are the continuity jumps that happen between films, and they make no sense at all.

In Jason Takes Manhattan, Jason isn't just set ablaze by toxic waste — he's melted down to the point where the only thing left of him is his childhood form. But the opening of Jason Goes to Hell involves a very intricate FBI sting operation at Crystal Lake to capture and kill full-grown Jason. The same sort of thing occurs between that film and Jason X, where our villain is suddenly not in Hell and instead being held at a research facility. Apparently, we should just forget the final frame of each Friday the 13th film and focus on the here and now, but it's hard to look past how little sense it makes.

Those weird nighttime activities

To be clear, the people who live around Crystal Lake are not the brightest. From poor recognition skills to their inability to properly navigate their surroundings, they are prime horror movie fodder. But some of the things these characters choose to do are pretty unbelievable, even in a horror movie context.

Take Samantha (Judie Aronson) from Friday the 13th: The Final Chapter. In a fit of jealousy, she leaves a house party and heads out toward the lake, which at first doesn't seem like that big of a deal. She could've just wanted to walk her emotions off. She doesn't just walk it off, though. She decides to go for a late night skinny dip by herself, as if that's a thing people do on the regular. 

Then there's Steven (Roger Rose) and Annette (Cynthia Kania) from Friday the 13th Part VI: Jason Lives, who think that picnics in the woods should only happen under the cover of darkness. Again, it isn't the activity itself that's strange. It's that it's happening in the middle of the night, in the middle of nowhere.

Jason's ever-mutating face

Perhaps the greatest travesty in the Friday the 13th franchise is the complete lack of continuity in terms of Jason Voorhees' appearance throughout the early installments. The adult mutant Jason under the burlap sack in Friday the 13th Part 2 actually looks a lot like how you'd imagine an adult Jason Voorhees would. One side of his face is a total mess, but he's got the long hair to cover it, so he really doesn't need the sack at all. 

But then we get into Friday the 13th Part III, which begins on the same night, and suddenly, Jason's lost his locks, and his face is somehow even more mutated than before. He's shaved his beard, too, which is a weird thing to want to do between almost dying and searching for refuge.

By Friday the 13th: The Final Chapter, any semblance of the old Jason is completely gone. Instead, he's got a face that looks like it was melted in a fire. Granted, each iteration was the responsibility of a different FX team, but if two stories take place within a few hours of each other, at least offer up some explanation for the difference.