It seems a bit unusual to start a horror-mystery show with a woman staring at her blood-covered hands. This has to be the ending; she is literally caught red-handed! However, for Fox’s highly anticipated new series, Scream Queens, this is just the beginning of what can only be described as the worst Hell Week in Greek Life history.
Scream Queens revolves around the secrets and murders that plague the sisters of the fictional Kappa Kappa Tau sorority. Leading this elite group is Chanel Oberlin, played by Emma Roberts, who would basically be Regina George in college had Cady Heron never intervened in high school. With a condescending tone and a smug smile, Roberts aces being the cold-hearted, totally unsympathetic sorority president. Challenging her iron fist is Jamie Lee Curtis as Dean Cathy Munsch, who proclaims that the sorority must accept any and all pledges, a condition that brings about an interesting array of applicants.
Standing out from the crowd of candle bloggers and Taylor Swift fanatics is freshman Grace, played by Skyler Samuels. She dreams of following in her late mother’s footsteps by pledging in her former sorority. Her situation becomes complicated, however, with the emergence of the Red Devil serial killer who may be connected to a sorority sister’s mysterious death 20 years prior.
Created by Glee and American Horror Story producers, Ryan Murphy, Brad Flachuk and Ian Brennan, it comes as no surprise that Scream Queens is like a testament to both shows. There is the overarching mystery that is typical of AHS, but there’s also a Glee-like humor in the dialogue. The comedy seems to outshine the horror.
The plot really isn’t anything viewers haven’t seen before. An unknown killer parades around terrorizing people. The Scream movies all revolve around this plot and even today’s Pretty Little Liars draws some similarities.
What spices this age-old storyline is the dark humor that accompanies it. At times, the show tries to humorously make light of the perils that are sometimes associated with the modern generation. For instance, the importance of social media to today’s youth is exaggerated in the scene where Chanel #2, played by Ariana Grande, tweets about her attacker rather than reporting him or her to the police. Even the first scenes of the show played on the many real-life accounts of parties raging on while one partygoer lays dying. The sisters happily sing along to TLC’s “Waterfall” while another sister aches for medical attention.
Horror lovers may not be completely satisfied with Scream Queens, but from the two-hour premiere, it is evident that this may only be one small aspect of the show. Yes, it’s a mystery thriller, but it may also be a biting portrayal of Millennials and their perceived flaws. Either way, there is a charisma to the show and a captivating quality about it that makes it worth the watch.