One of the most iconic franchises to spawn from the horror genre is Friday the 13th. The series has received twelve movies as of writing, a popular video game, and even a name-only television series. The movies vary in quality, but each one is a classic in one way or another. There are several reasons the series has become as cherished as it has. Arguably the key reason is Jason Voorhees and his kills. Friday the 13th has some of the most creative and best kills in all of horror. Each film has some great ones, and we have highlighted one for each film.
Jack – Friday The 13th (1980)
Newcomers are often surprised that Kevin Bacon appeared in the original Friday the 13th four years before his breakthrough role in Footloose. Even more surprising is his character has one of the more gruesome deaths of the film. After breaking one of the key slasher movie rules, Jack is relaxing in bed when a hand suddenly comes up from underneath and holds his head down. Then an arrow gets stuck through his throat in a bloody and shocking scene. Tom Savini did the gore effects for the movie, and he made this kill as disturbing as he could. The excess amount of blood was an accident, as the man running the rig had to blow in the blood tube when it got clogged. The result was a bubbly and brutal death that helped cement the movie as a classic over 40 years later.
Jeff and Sandra – Friday The 13th Part 2
The second film in the series was released less than a year after the original and featured Jason Voorhees as the killer for the first time. There are several great kills during Jason’s first outing, but one continues to stand out. Jeff and Sandra again partake in a slasher movie no-no, when Jason decides to put an end to it. Jason takes a long spear and impales the doomed couple. They are lying on top of one another, making their fate akin to a kabob. Like many great scenes in the series, the scene was edited by the MPAA. The full scene was long believed to be lost, but last year Scream Factory released the definitive set of the films, with the full scene available in all its gory glory.
Andy – Friday The 13th Part 3
The third film sees Jason receive his legendary hockey mask. Along with a new look, Jason brings his A-game as this film has one of the more brutal deaths the franchise had so far. While walking on his hands, Jason appears from behind a corner to Andy’s surprise. This shock is short-lived, as Jason quickly swings his machete downward. While most of the impact has been cut the aftermath is shown in a later scene. This film’s big push was 3-D, and this death is one of the few that didn’t utilize the gimmick.
Jason – Friday The 13th: The Final Chapter
After about four years of terrorizing the big screen, Jason Voorhees and the Friday the 13th series were coming to an end. Tom Savini returned to ensure it would be a spectacular ending, and that it was. Jason had hacked and slashed his way through all of the cast but two, and it is 12-year old Tommy Jarvis that did him in. Tommy was a make-up wiz, and he made himself look like a young Jason. This trick distracted Jason long enough for his mask to be knocked off, and for his machete to be lodged in the side of his head. Jason then fell face first, causing the machete to slowly slide into his head. This wasn’t enough, as in a fit of rage Tommy proceeded to hack away at the murderer. While this wasn’t the last time Jason appeared it is the only time Jason actually died.
Joey – Friday The 13th: A New Beginning
Two years after the last film, Friday the 13th returned for a fifth entry. The film, which follows an older Tommy at a halfway home, actually contains a shocking death. Before the killer even shows up, a resident at the home named Joey gets suddenly hacked up by another resident named Vic. This death is not only brutal, but it comes out of nowhere and is unexpected. As per usual, the scene was cut heavily, so the attack happens mostly off-screen. However, the tragic aftermath is later shown in a full closeup. This series is usually predictable, and the deaths can be seen coming a mile away. However, Joey’s end breaks the mold and keeps viewers on their toes.
Sheriff Garris – Friday The 13th Part 6: Jason Lives
The sixth entry saw the triumphant return of Jason Voorhees and as a zombie this time. Jason’s newfound strength and invincibility are put to good use in this film. One death late in the movie showcases this perfectly. Sheriff Garris spends the film ignoring Tommy’s pleas that Jason has returned, and even believes Jarvis is the true killer. He realizes just how wrong he is when he encounters Jason. He puts up a noble fight, but in the end, Jason got the upper hand. The resurrected killer folds the sheriff in half until the back of his head is touching his feet. The crunching and agonizing screams are hard to watch, but it proves that Jason is back, and better than ever.
Judy – Friday The 13th Part 7: The New Blood
The seventh entry is the first time Kane Hodder portrayed Jason, a role he would reprise in the following three Friday the 13th films. Hodder would also perform the motion capture for Jason in the game. It is fitting that the most iconic Jason would have one of the most iconic kills in his first movie. Judy is anxiously awaiting her boyfriend to join her in their tent. She instead gets Jason, who traps her in her sleeping bag. He then hits her against a tree so hard, it kills her. Originally, he hits the tree multiple times, but the scene was of course edited down by the MPAA.
Julius – Friday The 13th Part 8: Jason Takes Manhattan
While Jason didn’t exactly take Manhattan in his eighth outing, he did take the lives of more than a few characters. Most memorable was Julius who was an amateur boxer. Julius decides to stop running and take on Jason man to man. While he gets some good hits in, his noble act was in vain. In one punch, Jason knocks Julis’ block off. Literally. A single punch sends Julius’ head flying off into a dumpster. The eighth Friday the 13th movie isn’t exactly loved by fans, but this kill often finds its way on many best kills lists.
Jason – Jason Goes To Hell: The Final Friday
In the second final Friday the 13th film, the movie owns up to its promise by killing Jason in the opening scene. While Jason technically doesn’t die here, his body is destroyed so it is being counted. A young woman is on the run from Jason when it is revealed she is an FBI agent who has lured Jason into a trap. The trap has agents with enough firepower to stop an army, and they open fire on him. What follows is an incredible sequence that ends with Jason being blown into countless pieces that rain down on the cheering agents. The only solid pieces left are his head and of course his still-beating heart. This movie is odd, to say the least, but this opening is a sight to see, and thus makes our list for the best Friday the 13th kills.
Adrienne – Jason X
After the sting ending featuring Freddy in the last film, it only makes sense to send Jason to space in this one. A Jason in the future has some perks, however, such as this kill. Adrienne was a student who was studying Jason, and she is about to get some hands-on experience. Jason grabs her and shoves her head into some liquid nitrogen, and promptly smashes her head on the counter. This death stood out among the others and shows the audience just how ridiculous the film is about to get. With Sub-Zero-like kills such as this, it is no surprise, Jason, eventually ended up in Mortal Kombat.
Trey – Freddy Vs. Jason
Even in the long-awaited crossover featuring Robert Englund in his final official role as Freddy, Jason’s kills are the highlight. One of Jason’s first kills is a callback and in some ways an improvement. Jerk Trey is lying on his stomach in bed when Jason appears. Jason begins stabbing him through the back until he is a twitchy, bloody mess. This isn’t enough for Voorhees, so he grabs both ends of the bed and folds Trey in half in a similar manner to Sheriff Garis in part 6.
Trent – Friday The 13th (2009)
In many ways, the 2009 remake is one of the most underrated films in the series, and kills such as this proves it. Trent is the classic jerky frat boy. After Jason appears, Trent goes running for help. All seems to be going well when he flags down a truck. That is until Jason appears and finishes him off. Jason stabs him and lifts him off the ground. He then impales him on the back of the truck, as it drives down the road with Trent dying on the back, making this one of the best Friday the 13th kills.