Like virtually every other big name horror franchise, Friday the 13th quickly fell victim to the law of diminishing returns, which is pretty much what you’d expect when eight sequels were churned out in the space of twelve years. Box office dollars and critical reactions were heading steadily south, to the point that Jason Voorhees wound up spending almost a decade away from our screens after 1993’s Jason Goes to Hell: The Final Friday.
During that hiatus, Freddy vs. Jason also entered development before proceeding to get stuck there, with series veteran Sean S. Cunningham wanting to retain interest in the character until the crossover eventually happened. After failing to come up with any worthwhile ideas, Todd Farmer suggested sending the hockey mask enthusiast into outer space, seeing as it was the only direction that Friday the 13th hadn’t headed in yet.
Incredibly, the studio agreed, and Jason X was born. Set in the year 2455, the cryogenically frozen serial killer is taken aboard a spaceship where he quickly thaws out and picks up exactly where he’d left off several centuries previously. Besides the unique setting, though, there’s absolutely nothing to differentiate the tenth chapter from anything that came before. It’s the same basic set up all over again, except this time in space.
Jason X would turn out to be the latest in a long line of disappointing Friday the 13th sequels, making less than $17 million at the box office and being widely panned by critics when it arrived in April 2002. Given that it’s been twelve years since we last saw the slasher icon in Marcus Nispel’s remake, though, fans might be willing to take the plunge and revisit Jason X now that it’s available to stream on Netflix.