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The Original Opening Of Halloween 4 Explained This Plot Hole

The 1988 sequel "Halloween 4: The Return of Michael Myers" is a fan-favorite installment in the slasher film franchise. Its story picks up nearly 10 years after 1981's "Halloween 2." The sequel in between the two, "Halloween 3: Season of the Witch" (1982), was also set in Haddonfield, Illinois, but did not revolve around masked killer Michael Myers, instead introducing new characters and a new story entirely, so it's a bit of an outlier, and "4" represents a true return to form.

Creators John Carpenter and Deborah Hill said they always intended the franchise to become an anthology series, with each film presenting a standalone story set during the holiday of Halloween. However, when "Halloween 3" bombed at the box office, producer Moustapha Akkad demanded Michael Myers return for the fourth chapter in the franchise. Since both he and his nemesis, Dr. Sam Loomis (played by Donald Pleasence), seemingly perished in an explosion at the end of the second film, that meant filmmakers had a major plot hole to fill when writing their returns. 

Dr. Loomis shouldn't have survived the Halloween 2 ending

Michael Myers has always had a supernatural aura about him. After all, Loomis shot him multiple times at close range, and he fell from a second-story balcony at the end of "Halloween" only to return seemingly unscathed in the sequel, which picks up minutes later. At the end of "Halloween 2," Laurie Strode (played by Jamie Lee Curtis) shoots Michael in the eyes and, after allowing her time to escape, Loomis ignites a room full of oxygen tanks, causing an explosion that should have killed both men. While an inhuman Michael could have conceivably survived, his psychiatrist, Dr. Loomis, was most certainly human.

In "Halloween 4," the movie opens with an ambulance arriving at a sanitarium for the transport of a comatose Michael Myers, who is wrapped in bandages due to burns caused by the explosion. No real explanation is given for how Dr. Loomis survived the incident, although a security guard explaining the history of Michael Myers to the attendants acknowledges, "both of them nearly burned to death." 

Later, Loomis uses a cane for a limp and has some visible burns on his body when he arrives after Michael's escape. In a 2013 documentary about the making of the movie, screenwriter Alan McElroy revealed his original script contained an opening scene that showed the explosion and its aftermath. 

The original opening scene explained how Dr. Loomis survived

According to VHS Revival, John Carpenter and Deborah Hill never intended to bring Michael Myers back from the dead and disliked "Halloween 2," which is why they tried to kill both Michael and Dr. Loomis at the end of its story. According to "Back to the Basics: Making of Halloween 4," screenwriter Alan McElroy said the original opening of "Halloween 4" showed Loomis being thrown from the hospital room by the blast, which allowed him to survive. He expressed regret that the opening wasn't used, saying it would have added a visually stunning intro to the movie. Director Dwight H. Little, however, never shot the scene, deciding it would weigh down the story, and wasn't needed. In the documentary, Little argued, "I didn't want to be influenced, artistically, by anything other than 'Halloween 1.'" 

That simply means no director's cut of the film will ever include the writer's original opening. While one could argue it might have been fun to see, the "Halloween 4" opening sequence still manages to be eerie and creepy, keeping the spirit of the original alive. The whole series is definitely worth a rewatch before "Halloween Kills" lands in theaters later this year.