During the month of October, we like to share classic episodes of horror-themed television. That was easier to do when we first started doing our annual October horrorthon here at the Shattered Lens because every single episode of the original, black-and-white Twilight Zone was available on YouTube. Sadly, that’s no longer the case.
However, there is some good news! Twilight Zone may be gone but there are other horror shows on YouTube! For instance, I’ve discovered that every episode of Friday the 13th: The Series is available. Though I had never seen an episode of this show before coming across it on YouTube, I had read about it in Crystal Lake Memories, an excellent oral history about the Friday the 13th franchise, and it just seems like the right show for October!
Friday the 13th: The Series was a syndicated horror show that ran from 1987 to 1990. It followed the adventures of two cousins who inherited an antique shop. Their uncle, it turned out, was in league with the devil and he used the shop to sell cursed antiques. So, the cousins and a mysterious friend of their late uncle worked together to try to track those antiques down. Personally, I love antique shopping and Erin and I inherited about half of our mother’s doll collection. We’ve got over a 1,000 antique dolls here in the house. Some of them may be cursed, who knows?
This show was filmed in Canada and produced by Frank Mancuso. Mancuso also produced the original Friday the 13th films, starting with the second one. Beyond the title, though, the show didn’t have much to do with the films. John D. LeMay, who played one of the cousins, did go on to star in Jason Goes to Hell but that was actually the first Friday the 13th film (other than the first installment) to not be produced by Mancuso so that may have just been a coincidence.
Here’s the first episode of Friday the 13th: The Series, which aired on October 3rd, 1987. The episode was directed by exploitation vet William Fruet and stars Sarah Polley, in one of her first roles, as a child who uses a doll to kill people. Fortunately, I’ve been around dolls my entire life so I don’t have a fear of them. As for the rest of you …. enjoy Friday the 13th!