A horror anthology about a family of monsters watching a different horror story every week on their TV. Each tale is separate, often cautionary with occasional dark humor and irony and features various deadly creatures.
Pamela Dean Kelly,
Michael J. Anderson
An old antique dealer made a pact with the Devil to sell cursed antiques. When he dies, his store is inherited by his niece Micki and her cousin Ryan. With the help of Jack Marshak, they fight to retrieve the antiques from the people who bought them to stop them from causing harm.Written by
Paul Sasse <Loomis@student.centre.edu>
The character of Johnny Ventura had made sporadic appearances during the second season, assisting the leads in their pursuit of some antiques. He also appeared as a guest star in the third season premiere which essentially served as a bridge between the two periods in the series (before and after the departure of John D. LeMay). After the third season premiere, actor Steven Monarque became a full time regular and was credited in the opening titles. Therefore John replaced Ryan as the third member of the investigators of cursed items. See more »
Although no geographical location is ever given during the run of the series, it was clearly meant to be set in the US, with such things as American currency being used in any scene that involved money, and in one episode, a character saying something about being "in America." Even so, there were often things shown in scenes that clearly identified the location as Toronto, where the show was filmed, or Canada in general. Well known Canadian landmarks such as Casa Loma and part of the Toronto skyline, showing the recognizable Royal York hotel were seen, a train boxcar is shown with the word Canada written across its length in large letters, and vehicles also had Ontario license plates. While most outdoor scenes were kept non-descript, there were several scenes throughout the run of the series where the trio was driving along Yonge Street in Downtown Toronto, which is one of the most recognizable areas of Toronto. Americans who had never been to Toronto would likely recognize the area, just as Canadians recognize well known areas of New York and LA seen in TV shows, even if they have never been there before. These are just a few examples, but there are others as well. See more »
So much for the official story. Now what really happened?
It was scarecrow come to life! It had a leather mask on and was holding a handle with a blade...what do you calle them? A scythe! He must have just cut her head off.
See more »
During the end credits, there is a shot of the item featured in each episode. See more »
A late 80s horror anthology that delivered what it's fans wanted, but was canceled too soon. Great characters, interesting stories, and good scares, this show is missed by fans, who still hold out hope for a DVD release or maybe even a reunion movie.
Friday the 13th: The Series was a TV show that seemed to come into existence at just the right time. Syndicated, airing late at night, on Fridays or Saturdays when teens could stay up; all the right elements for a horror anthology to succeed, and it did. For a time.
While never achieving critical or popular admiration, it did develop a cult following of loyal viewers. The show did attract ratings, and was second in syndicated ratings at one point only to Star Trek: The Next Generation. However, it wasn't able to survive when it's parent company buckled to religious groups and their threats of boycotts. It was canceled at the end of it's 3rd season.
The show never enjoyed a great budget, and this is most noticeable in sometimes sub-par effects. But the actors, writers, producers, and all involved did the best they could with the materials and money at their disposal.
The episodes mainly dealt with the stars attempting to retrieve one of the cursed antiques sold by Lewis Vendredi as part of his pact with the devil. The objects were varied and the curses on them sometimes quite ingenious. The gore was kept to a minimum; this was still television, after all.
While the heroes usually did retrieve the item they went after, the endings weren't always tied up "Brady Bunch-style". Many times, the characters were left feeling as though they had failed, having retrieved the cursed items or not.
Character development did happen, as well. Micki, played by the singer Robey, started out as the spoiled, rich, reluctant participant. By the end of the series, she had developed a caring relationship with the others, and had begun to embrace the path her life had taken, albeit unwillingly.
Ryan Dallion, as played by John D. LeMay, started out as the one eager to believe and be a part of this weird business. He soon learned there wasn't much to laugh about, and became a much more somber figure. The way his character was written out of the series at the beginning of season 3 may have been a let down for some fans, but it gave Ryan a chance to start over, carefree again.
Chris Wiggins played Jack Marshak as the strange, mystical father-figure, and stayed pretty much on course. This character being a "world traveler" in the pilot, he did settle down, staying the full three years at Curious Goods.
Johnny Ventura, played by Steven Monarque, didn't have much time to develop, but did go from being a brash, hot-head to a trusted member after Ryan's exit.
All-in-all, the show was a great, late-night horror drama and gave it's target audience just what it was looking for. Some good scares, which may seem tame now, were just right for late 80s fans, especially watching at midnight or later on the weekends.
Sci-Fi Channel certainly has it's share of near-Z grade movies, it would be nice if they could put some money towards a movie of Friday the 13th: The Series. Not only would it be a dream-come-true for the fans, who would like a proper end to the show and it's story, it would be a good way to promote a DVD release of the show's 3 seasons, something fans still hold out hope for. Win/win all around, no?
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