Let me begin with a little anecdote.
Before the blogosphere, before I was ever a paid writer, I did zines. Yes, whippersnappers, in my day, if we wanted to get our weird-ass thoughts on pop-culture out there, we printed them out onto sheets of paper that we then photocopied, folded in half and stuck in the free rack at the local comic-book store. I had half an inclination that there might be some sort of future in this, and even went to the Alternative Press Expo in hopes of selling some for a dime apiece.
I was naive in the way only youth can be. Was so embarrassed by how much I overestimated my sales when filing for a temporary seller’s permit that I actually paid extra sales tax to the state rather than report my actual low revenues. (There’s a happy ending – those zines helped get me my first actual journalism job). But anyway, there is a point to all of this, and it is that people at the show would pick up one of the zines to look at, often come across my assessment of Bride of Chucky as “Genius!” and decide then and there that my opinion was so clearly terrible they would never like anything else I could possibly do.
Point is, me and Chucky go back a long way, and I heartily supported the franchise’s full-tilt embrace of perverse self-parody. But it went as far as it could, and rather than have someone else remake it, Don Mancini is clearly trying for a semi-reboot back to the series’ scary roots. He would also appear to be using the Blumhouse model of setting the entire story in one house.
I don’t think it’s going to work. As long as you use the same basic doll – albeit one who looks like he got a Brazil-style facelift – and the familiar Brad Dourif voice, you will never, EVER duplicate that great scare in the first film where he comes to life for the first time. This trailer instead gives us some woman stupidly putting her finger in his mouth? Dumb.
Look, if you can’t let Chucky die, I’ll say it – a whole new doll (and voice) is needed to make him remotely frightening. Maybe get a more plausible origin than voodoo while you’re at it.
Anyway, the new trailer’s after the jump. Tell me if you see a glimmer of hope in there.