Scream, director Wes Craven and writer Kevin Williamson’s four-part meta horror, made its dictum about the state of horror films in the mid-’90s clear in the first film’s opening sequence: The only way to overcome the genre’s entrenched tropes was to literally cut right through them — a knife right into Drew Barrymore. And now Scream is back, as a TV show.
The movies, to varying degrees of success (the unimpeachable ranking of the movies are as follows: Scream, Scream 2, Scream 4, Scream 3), reclaim slasher pics’ predictable cliches and use your understanding of how a scary movie is supposed to work (someone kills, others run, many die, the killer is killed) to heighten the thrill: Smart-ass teens can laugh at people in horror flicks mindlessly screaming and fleeing from a killer. But what happens when they’re being chased down by a guy in mask with a knife? They scream. And scream. And scream.
Here’s every scream from all four Scream films. The Scream television series premieres June 30 on MTV.