With enough open gaps and unanswered questions, fans may go as far to drum up their own ideas, create something out of nothing and project them permanently on the completed work. This, of course, is the fan theory. Love them or hate them, fan theories have helped shape our perceptions of cinema, literature, music and even our own reality.
Since its first release in 1996, Wes Craven’s Scream has become a tour-de-force of horror cinema, with four installments and a fifth confirmed. As with any franchise, cult classic or series, fans are almost guaranteed to peel their eyes and speculate.
So what do fans have to say about a series so cut and dry as Scream? There can’t be that many, right? You’d be surprised.
The four movies and MTV series may have taken care to finalize their plot-lines, tie them up in neat bows and verify that there are no loose ends leading into the subsequent sequels. But the door is still open for many possibilities. And with Scream 5 confirmed, the theories have gotten bigger, in some cases a little more outrageous, too.
Let’s take a look!
*MAJOR SPOILERS AHEAD*
Third Killer Theory
To the disappointment of many fans, Scream 3‘s climactic reveal contained two plot twists, one that drastically changes the series leading up to it. How can that be a bad thing?
Well, after Roman Bridger removes his mask in the finale, he reveals he is Sydney’s estranged half-brother. A child conceived during Maureen Prescott’s stint in Hollywood that involved casting couches with famous directors and powerful Hollywood socialites.
Roman grew up without ever having met his mother. As an adult, he went to Woodsboro to meet her, finally. After Maureen Prescott tells Roman that she has no son, she slams the door on him in hopes of suppressing her traumatic past. Only this enrages Roman being estranged and he sets in motion the events of the first Scream by manipulating Billy Loomis and Stu Macher into murdering Maureen Prescott and framing Cotton Weary.
This reveal felt like an undercut to the original Scream. Billy and Stu are regarded as the scariest, most psychotic and craftiest Ghostface Killers in the franchise. With Scream 3 typically held as the worst of the four Scream movies, it’s easy for fans to throw this canon fact right out the window.
But some theorists claim Roman’s aid extended further than just Maureen Prescott’s murder and that he helped orchestrate, with Billy and Stu, the Woodsboro Murders, before fleeing to Hollywood. This theory is supported by scenes in the first Scream in which Dewey and Sydney are stalked by someone in a Ghostface costume. But it can’t be Stu or Billy because they’re seen in the video store with Randy immediately following the scene.
So was Roman Bridger involved? Or…
Dewey the Evil Genius
Lovable Deputy Dewey Riley. He’s too innocent to be a devious, cold-blooded killer, some fan theories say.
Dewey is an innocent character. Soft-spoken and sweet, and when typically when he tries to be the gun-toting hero, he comes off as rather boyish. But that might be the point…
The only two characters to suspect Dewey throughout the series are Randy and Derek, but the moments only come off as tongue-in-cheek and as means for Randy and Derek to flip suspicions off of them. Dewey’s over-the-top plucky awkwardness has some fans believing it’s all a charade while Dewey can remain close to Sydney, but also in plain sight.
In each movie, Dewey is attacked, sometimes in life threatening ways. He’s stabbed twice in the back, knocked in the head with the butt of a knife and nearly had his skull crushed with repeated blows from a bedpan. Not only this, but in Scream 3, when Ghostface enters the bedroom Dewey is in, he sucker punches Dewey in the face instead of stabbing him. He goes on to attack the rest of the group. Dewey recovers himself and charges at Ghostface only to be…
Sliced across the arm and laid out AGAIN by Roman’s mean left hook.
I’m not a fan of this theory, but it holds enough water to be portrayed in the parody movie franchise Scary Movie (fun fact: Scream was originally named Scary Movie, but was changed at the end of production). The first Scary Movie reveals the dimwitted Deputy Doofy to be the brilliant mastermind behind the terrors in the film.
This might be my favorite of the fan theories I’ve seen. Much like Michael Myers having the strange ability to take a unhealthy amounts of beatings, this theory suggests the Ghostface costume itself does more than just conceal the killers from law enforcement. Something about it isn’t natural.
Throughout the series, the killers take severe damage up the ass. They are shot, stabbed, thrown down flights of stairs, thrown through windows, hit by cars, slammed with doors, punched and slapped around with 90’s brick phones. And they still get back up. The killers then appear in normal life without bruises, scratches or festering open wounds.
Adding to this is the killers’ seemingly enhanced strength in each film. In Scream 3, Roman kills Patrick Warburton’s character twice his size. In Scream 2, Mrs. Loomis snatches Randy into the van like he was a little boy. And while it is possible Mickey threw Cici over the balcony on his own in Scream 2, but it’s hard to fathom how he had the strength to stab Phil Stephens through a bathroom stall and the ability for Stu to gut Steve in Scream within a matter of seconds is a bit hard to believe.
A supernatural suit may also explain moments in each film when the killers are just quicker than naturally possible. Some suggest these moments are technical errors, but others believe a supernatural suit accounts for Billy and Stu’s ability to stalk both Dewey and Sydney at the same time, then appear at the video store in a flash. This theory would explain similar moments in Scream, Scream 2 and Scream 4 in which the killer disappears before being caught, reminiscent of the finale of Halloween.
Hollywood oversight? Supernatural suit? Or fan theories with too many nightmares involved?
Kirby Is Still Alive
In 2011 Scream 4 brought a brand new cast of teenage characters in a quasi-remake of the original. Sydney’s cousin, Jill, was meant to usurp Neve Campbell’s iconic character. Jill’s boyfriend became the new Billy Loomis and their friend, Charlie, was meant to be this generation’s Randy. But we all know how that turned out.
The brand new character, Kirby, played by Hayden Panettiere, was an absolute hit among fans. Kirby brought wit, spunk, sass and sympathy to the table. When she was killed in Scream 4’s reveal, fans were outraged to see her go, especially to someone like Charlie.
Wes Craven must’ve known fans would fall in love with Kirby. If you look closely after she’s stabbed and left for dead by Charlie, she rolls to the side, still alive, and this is the last we see of her. Wes intentionally left this subtle moment in the film to leave the door open on Kirby’s story.
Sadly, with the passing of Wes Craven in 2015, the odds of Kirby returning in Scream 5 might not be likely, assuming she’s still alive. While the new directors greatly believe in Wes’ vision for Scream, it is still their movie to make and their decision to include Kirby Reed.
Whether or not Kirby Reed is dead in the fictional universe, this one is the most believable of the fan theories listed. Wes Craven being conflicted about killing off Kirby is a huge, blinking sign that maybe the movie fanatic is still alive somewhere in the Scream universe. And as for her return in Scream 5, who really knows? The new directors may have some tricks up their sleeves.
Randy Faked His Death
Now, this would be pulling a Saw. This fan theory suggests Randy has been involved in every series of Ghostface killings since the beginning or end of Scream. His death at the hands of Mrs. Loomis in the studio van in Scream 2 would have been the greatest Texas switch in the history of…
As outrageous as this theory comes off at first, it’s not impossible to wrap your head around. Take into account Randy’s abundant knowledge of movies (especially horror) and it’s possible to think the film student crafted his own vision of sequels to the Woodsboro murders that involve his own fake death.
It makes sense how he would convince Mickey to play along, as well as Roman, who prides himself on creating his own horror films out of the events of Scream and Scream 3. Jill and Charlie are also no-brainers as they sought celebrity playing the roles of Sydney and Randy in what would be a real-life remake. Since the beginning, Randy applied the rules of horror to their real-life danger and treated each set of murders as movies in and of themselves.
If you still think it’s far-fetched, Jamie Kennedy, the actor known for playing Randy in Scream, Scream 2 and Scream 3, appreciated this fan theory and suggested it might be the way to go in Scream 5.
At this point, nobody but the directors and writers know what Scream 5 will be about. But if Randy Meeks appears one final time in the franchise beneath the mask, it’ll be the ultimate plot twist and fans, not just the ones who made these fan theories, will absolutely soil their pants.
That’s all we have for today! Which of these Scream fan theories was your favorite? Which one do you believe?
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