The Friday the 13th franchise is one of the most beloved in the entire scope of modern horror. The series was a titan of the 1980s and, as is evidenced by the upcoming video game coming out later this month, still shows tremendous staying power. Jason Voorhees is front and center on the Mt. Rushmore of modern horror icons.
But with any series that churned out entries in rapid succession, there was an occasional lack of oversight from film to film. As much as we love Friday the 13th, there are several inconsistencies between the sequels. In some ways, this is one of the most fun elements of the franchise because it leaves it open to interpretation. It allows us fans to be able to fill in the blanks ourselves.
With that said, there are a lot of questions fans have regarding the Friday the 13th movies that still remain unanswered after all this time. In some instances, there have been tie-ins that attempted to answer a few of these questions, but we still have no concrete answers from the movies themselves.
Who was Creighton Duke?
I mean, we know he’s a bounty hunter and that he’s one of the most badass characters to ever appear in the series, but who was he? He heavily implies that he has a history with Jason, but we never actually get to really elaborate on what that history is. All that we’ve ever been given about his background is that his girlfriend was killed by Jason. But that doesn’t explain a whole lot. Was he already a bounty hunter at that point? Did he become a bounty hunter with the intent of bringing down Jason? And how does he know more about Jason than any other character in the franchise’s history?
Jason Goes to Hell is often seen as its own standalone because it doesn’t really gel with any previous entry. But it actually takes Jason Takes Manhattan directly into account with its more melted Jason design. But that still doesn’t explain how he made it back to Crystal Lake from Manhattan. Even if Crystal Lake is located in New Jersey, that’s a hell of a walk. Or maybe he swam.
Was Tommy still institutionalized in Jason Lives?
We know that in A New Beginning, Tommy is still undergoing serious therapy to cope with the trauma of everything that happened to him as a kid. But what about Jason Lives? Did Tommy and Hawes escape, or had they been out for awhile and were now doing something that, if the institution ever found out, would haul their butts back in straight jackets? It’s unclear. Tommy is much more capable and level-headed in this one, but that could be read any number of ways.
What happened to Trish Jarvis?
Tommy Jarvis returned for two sequels after his first appearance in Friday the 13th: The Final Chapter, making him the only returning protagonist in the series not to be killed off. But what happened to his older sister, Trish, who was actually the heroine of Final Chapter? She’s barely ever mentioned again and never makes any kind of appearance. Granted, our next two run-ins with Tommy are at very brief moments in his life, but he could have elaborated on what happened to her. I’ve heard that she died from complications in surgery soon after Final Chapter, but there’s also nothing to suggest she isn’t alive and well.
No, seriously, where’s Paul? Ginny asks this question over and over at the end of Part 2 and never gets an answer. What happened to him? Did he come back to tackle Jason or was that a dream sequence? We don’t see him die, but we never see what happened to him either? Maybe he’s out there living in the woods, just like Jason. Even if he just died, why not tell us that? What was the point of making Paul into a big mystery at the end of the movie?
What happened to Jason’s dad?
From Jason Goes to Hell, we know that Jason’s father was named Elias Voorhees and that he had a child with another woman, that being Jason’s half-sister. But who was he? Does he offer any insight into how Jason turned out the way he did? Many of the comics have depicted him as a stereotypical abusive husband. But I like to think of him as a squirrelly, scrawny sort of guy, always referring to Pamela’s judgment. Elias was slated to be (one of) the killer in the recent attempt at a reboot, but it didn’t come to pass. He was also scheduled to appear at the end of Jason Lives, but the scene was cut out.
When (and how) did Jason first come back from the dead?
This is the ultimate question, isn’t it? And there are no real wrong answers. You can read this one however you want. It’s widely accepted that Jason survived his drowning and was human up until the events of Friday the 13th: The Final Chapter. But even in that movie, he’s somewhat supernatural, which was intentional on the part of director Joseph Zito. Was Jason always at least a little supernaturally inclined, or did it really just take nothing more than a bolt of lightning to turn him into an unstoppable, undead killing machine? There are so many ways to look at it and we’ll never have a truly concrete answer. Which is appropriate. That makes it very much like a classic campfire story, one that never gets told exactly the same way twice.