Commentary: Ghostface Is The Ultimate Legacy Character

by Frank Martin

As Hollywood gets into even more reboots, remakes, and long-awaited sequels, the subject of legacy characters has become a bigger and bigger topic of conversation. Without legacy characters, a franchise can feel lost and adrift. At the same time, fans also don’t want a rehashing of those characters in the same situations. This is why a lot of legacy characters face transformations or even deaths to keep a franchise going. And it might seem ironic, but there is perhaps no better legacy character than the Scream killer Ghostface.

By its very nature, horror is an interesting genre. So many film series have an abundance of sequels to the point where it becomes absurd. It often happens because the main attraction is the killer. People don’t necessarily care as much about the survivors as they do Freddy Krueger, Jason Voorhies, and Michael Myers. This is especially true when a mask is involved as any actor can be behind it and still be the killer fans love. As far as a horror icon is concerned, Ghostface is in that same category. The difference: Ghostface is merely an identity rather than a singular character.

The Ghostface killer has been the murderous shape in every single Scream movie, but since the killer never survives in each of the film, a new character has to come along and take up the mantle. In this regard, Ghostface is the ultimate legacy character, as highlighted brilliantly in the latest installment, Scream VI. The legacy and history of Ghostface is on full display. The fact that it can come back again and again while having a completely different person embody what it means to wear the mask shows just how versatile of a character this simple Halloween costume can be. It’s also a testament to the versatility of Scream as a franchise.

Scream VI is now in theaters.

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