The moment the temperature in Arizona starts to dip under 100 degrees, in my mind, it’s finally autumn. Of course, this year, most likely due to the strange time we’re living in, we’ve been reintroduced to some fall favorites a bit earlier than usual. I’m not completely complaining. There’s a scream or four coming my way.

Pumpkin spice made its triumphant early return (even though this blogger cannot stand the taste). Big box stores and Halloween specialty stores (like Spirit next to Bookmans Midtown) have started showing off all their spooky decorations of skeletons and witchy aesthetics. I may have also started backstocking my personal collection of tasty Halloween candy. Though, in true Bookmans fashion, what makes me most excited about the cooler days and nights are spooky thriller movie marathons. 

aadams family wednesday dance

Earlier this month, I got a head start in my horror movie watching with the always classic Wes Craven Scream series. Over two weekends, I completely binged all four of the released films and all of their glory, which ended with the wonderful news that Neve Campbell has confirmed joining fellow Scream alumni Courtney Cox and David Arquette for the fifth installment. Oh happy day!

So what better way to celebrate another Scream film than going back through the previous movies and gushing about my favorite scenes from them in order starting with my least favorite? Spoiler warning ahead.

Scream 3

In my opinion, Scream 3 is the weakest of the Scream franchise. While how meta the franchise can be has always been something I’ve adored about the films making pure fun of themselves, the third movie almost took it a step too far. Though, this could be due to the fact that screenwriter Kevin Williamson wasn’t on board for this film and the growing concern of pop culture contributing to public acts of violence. 

However, I believe that the major downfall of Scream 3 was the pure fact that these beloved surviving characters became a caricature of themselves. This third movie relied so much on the comedy aspect of the previous films that it almost forgot it’s true intentions—kill Sidney Prescott. And give voice to Patrick “McDreamy” Dempsey’s fabulous hair, of course.

What’s my favorite scary scene? 

While I think most fans would say the best twist of the movie was finding out that TV’s beloved Scott Foley, who plays Roman Bridger, is Sidney’s older half-brother with serious mommy issues is the best part. I will argue that watching both Gale Weathers (Courtney Cox and Parker Posey as Jennifer Jolie) snooping around for information about Sidney’s mother only to find the her highness Carrie Fisher, or in the movie “her look-alike”, as a studio employee who helps them solve a crucial part of the mystery is just ace. This scene delivers one of the few classic Scream moments.

Fisher sits at a desk in a creepy basement room that Cox and Posey cautiously sneak into. We’re thinking “oh no something is going to happen”, but instead they meet cigarette smoking, snarky Fisher who holds a major grudge towards her real life self and her success. Anxiety and comedy achieved. 

Scream 2

Or as I like to call it, Scream Goes to College. What do you do when your best friend is dead and your boyfriend and his crummy friend were the killer? You go get a theater degree, obviously. I never really liked the fact that Sidney was a theater major, especially with the plot of the third movie, it didn’t make much sense to me that someone who wanted to lay low and start fresh with study a career that could possibly have her live a life in the spotlight (more than she already does) and relive the horror of the first movie over and over again. 

Even though Scream 2 lands second to last on my list, I will argue that it is hands down one of the BEST horror sequels ever made and I think Randy Meeks would agree (RIP). If anything, the guessing game that Scream 2 plays with its viewers is unmatched in this category. 

What’s my favorite scary scene?

In homage to resident film geek, Randy Meeks, I have to give the best scene to him or rather, his death. As Randy picks up a call on his archaic mobile device, it becomes clear to him, Dewey, and Gale that the killer is watching them and close by. While Dewey and Gale frantically run all over the campus mall harassing anyone who happens to be talking on their cell phone, Randy continues to keep the killer on the line.

Unfortunately for him, it ends with him being brutally murdered in Gale’s broadcast van. Thankfully, it wasn’t the last we see of Jamie Kennedy, which is in the third film with his cryptic video warning of how the “rules don’t apply anymore”.

Scream 4

Why add a fourth movie to a somewhat perfect trilogy? Blame Scream 3. Even if you think it was unnecessary, let me tell you this film deserves more recognition. Scream 4 attempts to bridge the age gap between our three survivors and the new generation and prove that nobody has worse family issues than Sidney. Seriously, no one. 

With the older characters having gone and lived their lives and the Stab “movies” still as popular as ever. Sidney returns home on the anniversary of the ill-fated first movie. Dewey is sheriff, Gale is trying (and failing) to write her first fiction novel, and Sidney is fresh on the book tour for her memoir when the copycat killer attacks. It feels all too close to home when her own cousin (played by Emma Roberts) is attacked. Also, let’s give it up for Kirby (Hayden Panettiere) who single handedly out-nerds everyone with her horror movie knowledge.

What’s my favorite scary scene?

HANDS DOWN when Jill reveals herself to be the killer for no other reason than fame and pure jealousy. Watching Jill take the upper hand easily sent chills down my spine. These feelings of awe only turned to terror and “oh this girl is crazy” as she kills her accomplice (a la Stu callback) and begins to set herself up as the sole survivor. 

While everyone in the room is either dead or “dead”, Jill slams her face against picture frames, stabs herself in the shoulder (HOLY CRAP), and crashes on top of a glass table making it look like there was a serious fight for her life. 

The whole scene is crazy to watch a teenage girl go to such lengths just for fans. Or Instagram followers.


Of course, my ranking ends with the original Scream. This movie basically invented the classic 90s horror genre. From Drew Barrymore’s FOREVER remembered first kill to Rose McGowan’s garage decapitation to learning to always double tap your kills. Scream showed us that horror movies could make fun of themselves intelligently while still giving us major anxiety issues while doing something completely different than every movie like it. 

The Scream franchise as a whole showed us that anyone can pick up the mask and be Ghostface.

What’s my favorite scary scene?

Once again, I’m going to my man Randy Meeks for this honor. In this first movie, while sitting around at Stu’s party the group of teenagers begin watching a scary movie during which Randy explains how formulaic the genre is creating “the Rules”. It’s a brilliant plot device that fuels the entire franchise from that moment on. Randy really deserved better.

Honorable mention

Every single time Dewey almost died. He tries guys, he really does. What’s your favorite scary movie?