10 most memorable deaths in the ‘Scream’ franchise

Fans of Ghostface will be seeing the slasher in the newest installment of the Scream franchise in less than three weeks, and social media is buzzing with theories, questions, and excitement surrounding the film.

In fact, the pop culture realm has had Scream on the brain for months. With special showings of the first film in theaters this past October to the limited edition steel book and interviews with original cast members — it’s been a scream, baby.

One thing fans love most about the Scream franchise is the depth of it all. Cast members have spoken about Wes Craven’s psychology and the studying that went into learning the motives of the characters they played. Another fan-favorite aspect of the series are the fight scenes, and how the deaths are just as important as finding out who the killer is.

In some films, the dispatches are largely for the sake of gore; it’s brutal and tragic, but the movie focuses more on the killer. With Scream, the deaths almost always mean something. That isn’t to say that the slasher isn’t mischievous and theatrical in its murders or that there aren’t gratuitous demsies thrown in — but there’s often more bubbling underneath the surface.

Some of the killers’ motives have been clear, like Billy Loomis killing Sidney’s mother after finding out about the affair they were having — before finally getting Sidney where he waned her and primed to kill her, too. Others haven’t been as clear, but left room for audiences to guess and evaluate what was going on.

On the other side of the coin are those who simply get in Ghostface’s way, and there have certainly been some memorable ways to go out when it comes to the Scream franchise.

Entertainment Weekly featured some of Scream‘s most iconic kills in a collector’s edition magazine, and it’s a fond look back at the victims of Ghostface. We were inspired by the magazine to list 10 of our own most memorable deaths within the franchise — with an honorable mention.

Kirby Reed (honorable mention)

Kirby Reed is a character fans are still rooting for; in fact, several hope she’ll make a comeback in the upcoming fith installment. There are groups on social media who aren’t willing to accept her death, and as we know of horror — death isn’t exactly the end in some circumstances. Scream isn’t a franchise known for allowing people to return from the dead, but anything could happen.

For now, Kirby remains dead, and it was hard to watch; it was harder even to fathom as she had just saved the guy who ended up killing her. It’s a cruel fate.

Rachel Milles

If you fast forward to exactly four minutes, you’ll see the death we’re mentioning unfold — if you’re not already familiar with it.

Rachel Milles is a character in the Scream franchise via the Stab films, Stab 7 to be exact. Milles is decompressing and realizing how “over” these films she is while speaking to a friend on the sofa. As Milles goes on and on about how recycled and unsurprising the films have become, her friend is growing visibly more annoyed. However, she doesn’t take the hint, and she keeps sharing her opinions when her friend “snaps” and stabs her.

Jennifer Jolie

Jennifer Jolie, the actress who has just landed the role of her dreams, is killed in a way that is both fitting and ultimately as terrifying as she was scared it would be. Jennifer fears her death is coming, and she’s right, but the suspense of not knowing when is something the audience feels alongside her.

Ultimately, she’s killed in front of Gale and Dewey, who can’t get to her to help stop the murder. Ghostface stabs her in the back as she tells him she can’t die, as she’s the killer in Stab. Unfortunately, that isn’t a get out of jail free card here.

Roman Bridger

Roman Bridger’s death has to be included for several reasons. One, he’s Sidney’s half-brother, and it’s not the sunny relationship you’d hope to have with a sibling. Roman resents Sidney and wants to frame her to get revenge, because he sees her as having popularity and life he longs for after surviving the Ghostface attacks.

His death is memorable because Sidney stabs him in the chest and kills him — with Dewey shooting him in the head just to be safe, but Sidney gets that all-important stab. She also mentions the horror movie he wasn’t excited to make right before she did so Sidney ensures Roman won’t live to see another day, or hurt anyone else in the process.

Maureen Prescott

Maureen Prescott’s death occurs before the Scream films, but it doesn’t lessen its effect on the franchise. In fact, if not for Maureen, the motivation for Billy to become Ghostface in the first film wouldn’t have happened.

Okay, so maybe he would have gone off the deep end in some capacity, but it wouldn’t be the slasher saga we know and love.

Maureen was sexually assaulted when she left Woodsboro to become an actress. The assault was brutal, and no one believed her. To add salt to the wound, she was blacklisted from the business for trying to tell the truth about what happened to her.

If that wasn’t bad enough, Maureen found out she was pregnant and soon gave up the baby (Roman Bridger) for adoption. She moved home to Woodsboro and married Neil Prescott. The couple had Sidney, but she was still haunted by her past and didn’t stay faithful to Neil. One of the men she had an affair with was Billy’s dad, Hank.

Billy wanted Maureen dead because he blamed her for his mother abandoning him. Just how did he find out? Bridger wanted to meet his mother, and when he did, she rejected him. Maureen didn’t want to have to face her past and shut him out. This angered Bridger, who then began to stalk Maureen and gather evidence about her affairs.

All of the puzzle pieces fell together and Billy, alongside Stu, killed Maureen almost a year before the next murder spree in Woodsboro began.

Maureen Evans

Maureen Evans’ death was a tragic and pretty gory way to kick off the second film. When Maureen and her significant other Phil attend a screening of Stab, they’re surrounded by could-be slashers in their best Ghostface get-ups. No one expects a killer to hide among them, so they think nothing of it when Phil gets up to use the restroom and leaves Maureen alone.

Phil soon returns and takes his seat next to Maureen, but she notices that he’s acting a little strange. Before she can react, Ghostface stabs her, and she dies in a terrifying show as audience members think it’s fake, and some even rejoice (seeing as she was one of those movie fans who are a bit loud).

Tatum Riley

Tatum Riley was Sidney’s best friend, Stu’s girlfriend, and a resident hottie as far as slasher films go. Thank you, Mean Girls, for the term we’ve woven into our vocabulary. Tatum’s death was gruesome as she’s trapped with Ghostface in the garage.

Thinking it’s a joke at first, she’s sarcastic and doesn’t seem too interested in playing his game. What she fails to realize until it’s too late is that there’s nothing to joke about. By the time she plans her escape, it’s too late, and she ends up dying by the garage door closing on her. It’s a terrible way to go.

Randy Meeks

Randy’s death was absolutely brutal. Seeing him walk towards the van and getting that eerie feeling in the seconds before he dies was miserable. Randy was a true horror fan through and through, and he was the kind of friend you’d have been lucky to have. Losing him in the franchise stung, and the moments we get with him in Scream 3 via the tape he left behind were emotional. We would have loved to see what Randy had to offer as the murderous adventures continued.

Billy Loomis

You can call us Sidney Prescott here, and you wouldn’t be wrong, but we think Billy’s death was definitely top three material. We can honestly admit that we’d have fallen for his manipulation as easily as Sidney did, and for as terrible as he was… you get the idea. Billy had some severe issues, and he got way too creative after all those horror films he watched, but he’s a franchise staple.

Billy’s death was pretty brutal. Nothing says ‘game over’ like a shot to the forehead, and in the end — he and Stu didn’t have what it took to pull off the perfect murders.

Stu Matcher

Stu’s death was a nod to horror in several ways, and the last act of the film where he and Billy are starting to take their anger, frustration, and fear out on one another is a pinnacle of the entire franchise. Stu had been stabbed too deep by Billy, had a phone chucked at his head, was suffering from blood loss, and — quite frankly, he was utterly out of fight. When Sidney pushed a television on his head, one that was playing Halloween, it was a moment that made total sense.

Casey Becker

Casey’s death was tragic, made worse by the fact that her parents found her hanging from a tree after seeing the state of disarray their home was in. Knowing something was wrong with their daughter, hearing her gasps and whines through the phone, and unable to locate her. The audience’s sinking feeling was magnified as pain felt by her parents. Her death was absolutely the most iconic the franchise, though.

The death toll will only grow with the premiere of Scream on January 14. How would you rank 10 of the most memorable deaths in Scream? Any not on the list you’d include, or any you’d switch the ranking of? Let’s talk about it.