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It’s a phenomenal time for fear on television. Between American Horror Story, Scream Queens, and The Walking Dead – not to mention its sister series Fear The Walking Dead and Ash vs Evil Dead – TV audiences are responding marvelously to serialized horror-themed television. The CW is set to continue that trend by bringing iconic slasher franchise Friday the 13th to the small screen – potentially allowing Jason Voorhees to carve up horny teens on a weekly basis – and the creative forces behind the show couldn’t be happier with the home they’ve found.
Friday the 13th creator Sean S. Cunningham sat down with Fangoria to explain why The CW is such a perfect home for the upcoming slasher series:
We went with CW because they are probably the most successful genre distributor in the world because they’re not only strong in this country but around the world with their other titles, in particular, Arrow and The Flash. They know that market and they know the audience. They’re very smart and very psyched about doing the project.
While going with a premium cable network such as HBO or a streaming service like Netflix would have provided Cunningham and the rest of the creative team behind Friday the 13th more freedom to get their hands bloody, The CW seems to be a perfect home for marketing across cultures. Given the fact that slasher franchises often market themselves to an adolescent demographic anyway, The CW also feels like a good fit because many of their programs tend to be geared towards a predominantly millennial audience.
We cannot exactly say that Cunningham's words are without merit. Arrow and The Flash have become two of the most popular series on TV over the last few years, with little sign of slowing down. Both shows manage to maintain widespread appeal, while still remaining true enough to their source material that diehard fans of their respective properties have no trouble getting on board. Considering the iconography of the Friday the 13th franchise – and what that means to horror fans – it makes sense that Cunningham would want to work with a network that would properly revere a classic franchise.
The CW is also no stranger to shows with horror elements. While no one would ever be so brazen as to call any show on The CW terrifying, a number of CW programs – such as Supernatural, iZombie, and even The Vampire Diaries – capitalize on use of dark horror aesthetics while still casting a wide audience net that does not necessarily alienate the more squeamish members of the audience in any significant manner.
Alas, we still have a long ways to go before we see Jason Voorhees don his iconic hockey mask and start hacking his way through the counselors of Camp Crystal Lake once again. We will keep you posted on The CW’s Friday the 13th series as more news becomes available.