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Looney Tunes.

After back-to-back weeks of visually sumptuous horror films with Germany’s Der Samurai and Detroit‘s It Follows, Trace and I are tackling a franchise entry with the 30th anniversary of Freddy’s Dead: The Final Nightmare (1991). Joining us is Mark O. Estes, host of the Midnight Social Distortion podcast, who has strong nostalgic feelings for the film.

Naturally, the Rachel Talalay-directed sixth entry in the Nightmare on Elm Street series was not its last, but the film is certainly set up as one. The film deceptively follows amnesiac teen John Doe (Shon Greenblatt) as he leads youth counselor Maggie (Lisa Zane) and several other teens, including a young Breckin Meyer, back to Springwood where Freddy Krueger (Robert Englund) lies in wait. In this dystopian future where adults are hypnotized and there are no teens left for Freddy to prey on, the conflict goes on the road as family secrets are exposed and Freddy is finally killed for good!

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Episode 143 – Freddy’s Dead: The Final Nightmare (1991) feat. Mark O. Estes

Just in time for its 30th anniversary, we’re dipping back into the Nightmare on Elm Street franchise with a look at Rachel Talalay’s 1991 entry, Freddy’s Dead: The Final Nightmare.

Joining us to discuss his childhood favorite (and gateway into horror) is Mark O. Estes, writer and host of the Midnight Social Distortion podcast.

This film is…a lot, particularly how it balances laughs (Looney Tunes!), scares and camp. Is it paying homage to the franchise or simply doing a poor imitation of previous films?

Plus: discussion of “Final” entries in franchises, comparisons to Hellraiser: Bloodline, tangents on Paranormal Activity and Friday the 13th, films that made us feel magical as kids, the subversion of John Doe’s death and the film’s treatment of sexual assault. Like we said: it’s A LOT!

Cross out Freddy’s Dead!

Coming up on Wednesday: We’re getting ahead of the anniversary game with a deep dive into David Lynch’s hallucinatory vision of Hollywood in Mulholland Drive (2001).

P.S. Subscribe to our Patreon for tons of additional content! This month, we have episodes on Nia DaCosta’s Candyman, James Wan’s Malignant, Netflix’s series Brand New Cherry Flavor, as well as an audio commentary on 30 Days of Night and a minisode on weird horror films.

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