*CH CH CH, AH AH AH*
If you’re a character in a horror movie and hear that noise, well, you probably don’t have long to live. Slashers have become a staple in the horror genre and though their storylines can at times be a bit repetitive, audiences continue to seek them out for blood-curdling scares.
From Psycho to Scream Queens, the slasher is part of American movie culture and these masked maniacs have left a long trail of bodies with numerous sequels. From demonic dolls to supernatural lunatics, here are the slashers you never ever want to meet in real life.
Yes, Chucky has a height factor that works against him and he’s just a plastic doll, but he did some serious damage in his day. After being possessed with the soul of a serial killer, Chucky springs to life and begins murdering anybody who dares write him off as a harmless toy. Add in his psychotic bride and it’s double the trouble. Rumor has it he’ll be making yet another return, but this time with his own TV series.
Don’t even act like you’re brave enough to call out for Candyman while looking into the mirror. This slasher with a hook for a hand played on urban legend and is one of the few non-white serial slashers in the horror genre. Seeking revenge for his murder, Candyman was all about ripping through the alleys of Chicago, and he did so with punishing supernatural brutality.
We’re willing to bet that Scream’s Ghostface mask was the biggest-selling Halloween mask of the late 90s. After years of lackluster Nightmare on Elm Street movies, Craven returned with a vengeance with this tale of a cloaked psycho who gets his kicks by scaring suburban teens before laying into them with a hunting knife.
If you haven’t picked up on it by now, the horror genre has a serious thing for murderous dolls. While the Jigsaw doll itself wasn’t possessed, the puppetmaster pulling his strings was certainly filled with evil intentions. What made the Saw movies such a stomach-turning hit was that Jigsaw didn’t rely on an ax or knife to do his murdering, but devised diabolical traps to ensnare his unfortunate victims. You definitely don’t want to play this creepshow’s game.
The Texas Chainsaw Massacre added a certain level of gory depravity that slasher movies had been lacking when it hacked its way into theaters in 1974. Our masked villain was a victim of his own family’s cruelty and carried out his cannibalistic urges on any unlucky coed who happened to cross his part of the Lone Star state. Did we mention that he wears a mask made of the skin from his victims? *shudders*
A hockey goalie mask may just be the most symbolic image of horror for 80s kids. Oddly enough, it wasn’t until Friday the 13th Part III that our machete-wielding killer donned the now-iconic hockey mask. The towering and nearly silent slasher has appeared in a dozen films so far, stopping at nothing to avenge the death of his mother, Pamela Voorhees. Yeesh, get over it already, dude.
It’s a true testament to the horror genius of Wes Craven that he has two slashers on this list. Fearsome Freddy, of course, is Craven’s top slasher. After being burned to death, Freddy seeks revenge on the children of his abusers and goes after them when they’re most vulnerable — in their sleep. Sure, Freddy was known for delivering some cornball lines, but his shape-shifting capabilities gave him an extra edge in the fright department.
Michael Myers may not be the original slicer and dicer of teenagers, but he’s arguably the scariest. Maybe it’s his ghostly mask hiding the dead eyes lurking underneath or propensity to kill without motive, but something about John Carpenter’s madman has captivated audiences for 40 years and Michael… just… won’t… stop.
There’s a wealth of serial slashers in the horror genre, but these creepy killers definitely carved out — pun intended — a place that became their very own. Did your favorite slasher make the list? Tell us in the comments below!