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Halloween Kills

Halloween Kills Explained- Is There An End Credit Scene And Why We Are Still Scared Of Michael Myers

Halloween Kills out today in theaters and exclusively streaming on Peacock has flaws. Critics are almost entirely split on their opinions. Some think it is fun, entertaining nostalgic trash, while others believe it is an overwrought, overstuffed, confusing mess. The truth is, it is both. Successful movies can be both. That’s basically what a guilty pleasure is. Not everything has to be high cinema to satisfy the fans it is catering to. There isn’t an end credits scene, but the explosive finale and voice-over leave no doubt where Halloween Ends will be headed.

Picking up right after the events of David Gordon Green’s 2018 retcon of the franchise, Laurie(Jamie Lee Curtis), Karen(Judy Greer), and Allyson(Andi Matichak) think they have successfully killed Michael. But, just like always, that belief proves to be faulty. A gaggle of burly firemen doing their best with saws, axes, and firehoses has to face down the Boogeyman who emerges from the fire like a homicidal phoenix ready to hack his way through town. Obviously, this doesn’t go well for the firemen and thus begins the battle for Haddonfield.

A whole lot of splattered blood and dead bodies later Halloween Kills, like just about everyone. There are so many side plots, previous film callbacks, and hilarious character setups you barely get a chance to appreciate them before Michael comes calling. At best, it is semi-chaotic insanity soaked in the blood of more bat-wielding mob members than a capitol insurrection. But, ignoring the apparent desire to tie up every loose end there ever was in the original Halloween, Halloween Kills as the middle film in an overarching trilogy does its job. It keeps the story going and sets up the finale.

There will be a showdown in Halloween Ends. Laurie and Allyson are going to be angry he killed Karen and a good percentage of Haddonfield. Michael is angry, and an ill-informed and foolhardy swarm of vigilantes tried to gang up and take him out. As Laurie explains in the final act, Michael is evil formed by the evil in us all. You can’t fight Evil with anger and violence. Brute force can’t defeat a monster so single-minded and vile; Hell doesn’t even want him.

While I understand the clunky social commentary Halloween Kills is going for, it leaves little room for anything other than a love can conquer all solution. Unless Universal is going to resurrect Michael’s dead family, who has somehow been in witness protection all these years, there is no way to defeat him. Bullets, knives, blunt instruments, and fire can’t touch him. Will Patton’s Officer Hawkins already showed compassion when he prevented Dr. Loomis from killing Michael way back in the day. That clearly was the wrong move, so why would love work now?

To be honest, I don’t want it to. It’s trite, ridiculous, and hyperbolic drivel. Yes, people are messes. We are capable of so many terrible things. There’s a reason Tommy(Anthony Michael Hall) was able to rouse his mob in the hospital so quickly in Halloween Kills. We are vengeful, angry, greedy, selfish jerks sometimes. Most of us have been bullied and been bullied by others at one time or another. Some have endured things nobody ever should. The difference is, we aren’t killers, and Michael doesn’t care if you are innocent, guilty, or anything in between. He can’t be stopped, and he can’t be understood. That’s the beauty of him as an enduring monster, and that is why we are still scared all these years later.

The late ’70s to mid-’80s saw a boom in quality slashers. Friday the Thirteenth and Nightmare on Elm Street both had countless sequels and have been rebooted so many times you can’t even remember them all. While Jason Vorhees shared some of the same DNA as Michael Myers, he has always been less scary. There was too much backstory and rationale. He was a small kid whose mom went bonkers when he drowned at Camp Crystal Lake, and now he kills because he doesn’t like young people having sex, doing drugs, and drinking. No problem, avoid those things, and you are golden. Jason was a voiceless relentless killer who lived through a parade of creative attacks by everyone, including Freddy Krueger. His motivations were pretty pedestrian, though.

Freddy Krueger also had so many sequels it’s comical. Robert England’s Freddy was as funny as he was scary. Just about the only thing really scary was the idea that your nightmares could kill you. I admit to being scared when I first saw Nightmare on Elms Street as a kid. Watching it now, I can’t help but giggle. England’s Freddy was full of snarky wit, elongating arms, and needle fingers(Dream Warriors is a personal favorite). The 2010 retcon starring Jackie Earle Haley, who is impressive in almost everything but this, tried very hard to lean away from the humor. It lost everything that made the original films so much fun. The two iterations of the story both involved a pedophile. Freddy’s motivation was very clear. He liked to torture kids.

As much as I enjoyed both franchises, neither could scare me like Michael Myers could and still can. You can’t reason with him. You can’t stop him, and if you meet him, you are probably going to die. His backstory leaves plenty of holes. That’s a good thing. The minute his reasoning is known is the minute he ceases to be scary. Unfortunately, what we imagine is always more frightening than what we see. Michael Myers is the Boogeyman in the flesh. He kills because he likes it. He wants Laurie Strode, but he has no issue practicing on randos while he’s hunting her down. You can’t escape him simply by not be a family member, and he enjoys the violence.

As much as William Shatner, a national treasure, isn’t scary, his inverted face is terrifying. It is a blank slate that is representative of the countenance it covers. Michael could be anyone, anywhere, anytime. While Halloween Kills has many miscues and misfires, it does manage to grow the mythos of Michael Myers. How is an unstoppable force not horrifying?

Whether you landed on the entertaining schlock side of the equation or the utter trash, the one thing you can’t deny is Michael Myers is still scary. He still has the power to make us jump, have our pulse race, and twist our stomachs in knots. We only got a glimpse of the man behind the mask, and it is enough to make me know, I don’t want to see more. Evil doesn’t have a face, he has a name, though, and he kills; a lot. Halloween Kills is streaming on Peacock and in theaters now.