Halloween Vs Scream – The Greatest Horror Franchise Ever [Round 9]

Welcome to the Tournament of Terrors, a /Film bracket where we argue about the greatest horror franchise of all time, and you, the readers, get to decide the winners. The rules are simple: two iconic horror movie series enter the ring, each represented by a /Film writer ready to champion them. And you — yes, you, the person reading this right now — will vote on which one gets to move forward.

You can find all the details, including a schedule for all the showdowns, right here. And here is the complete bracket, so you know where things stand.

In our last showdown, George Romero's zombies where facing off against Ed and Lorraine Warren. Today, it's all about knife-wielding maniacs. In one corner, it's the slasher series that built the template on which the entire subgenre is built: "Halloween." In the other, it's the slasher series that gleefully tore up that template so it could subvert it: "Scream." It's classic versus postmodern, and you get to make the call.

Which one wins? That's up to you. First, the arguments. And then, you vote!


Ghostface loves to talk, but does the shifting killer behind the "Scream" series really have that much to say? Besides some cute quips and some fun costume changes, "Scream" has none of the gravitas or timelessness of the always enduring of "Halloween." Don't get me wrong, "Scream" is funny, it's cute. I mean, two people fell in love on set and got married in real life (and then divorced, but that's beside the point). That makes it a delightful little rom-com, but it's not quite scary enough to make it to the big leagues.

What makes Ghostface effective (if you're feeling especially kind) is that anyone can be Ghostface. Anyone can don the mask and live out their sociopathic tendencies, but what do some murderous nerds have in comparison to the immortal Michael Myers? A man who is basically the boogeyman made flesh? A man who doesn't have to utter a single word to bring an entire town to its knees? A man who has inspired so much fear that they just won't stop making movies about him. I mean, not only will they not let Michael die, they won't even let the idea of Michael die. Our boy is 12 movies in and despite the fact that David Gordon Green's upcoming "Halloween" film will be called "Halloween Ends," we have no reason to believe the franchise will ever actually end. How many films have been devoted to the watered down Spirit Halloween villain that is Ghostface? Five? How sad. (Kaylee Dugan)


"Scream" effectively changes with the times and frequently brings innovation and new thrills to the slasher genre by subverting and having fun with the tropes that have defined it. Michael Myers gets all the credit in the world for igniting the slasher craze as we know it in 1978. But almost everything that followed was chasing the coattails of greatness of that first movie. The sequels only ended up ruining the face of pure evil by constantly expanding his mythos when it could have been so much more simple and so much more terrifying. It's not good news when a franchise keeps having to erase history by ignoring a whole series of sequels in order to effectively continue. While one could argue that "Scream 3" had to do some serious retconning to make the sequel work, the reframing of Sydney Prescott's mother's origin story made for a fun caper that brought the biggest twist in the franchise yet. 

The Ghostface mask has also always been a consistent, fear-inducing threat throughout the entire franchise. Meanwhile, the Michael Myers mask turned into a Spirit Halloween mannequin in the sequels that followed. While Myers' motivation has changed throughout the franchise, from being pure evil to chasing down his estranged sister, then his young niece, then his sister again, this time with a teenage son and his friends, and back to pure evil again. "Scream" is always about revenge, and the way Ghostface toys with his victims is infinitely better than any of Michael Myers' corpse art projects. Ghostface for the win. Evil dies tonight. (Ethan Anderton)

And Now It's Time to Vote

So there you have it. The arguments have been made. The defenses have been mounted. The attacks have concluded. The ball is now in your court, folks. Using the Twitter poll below (which will close 12 hours after publication of this article), vote for which movie franchise you want to see advance. Will it be the "Halloween" series or the "Scream" movies? Whoever wins will return this week, facing off against the winner of the "Alien" and "Evil Dead" showdown.