Scream—Season 1

scream season 1 movie poster
7.5 Overall Score
Story: 7/10
Acting: 7/10
Visuals: 8/10

Fun, quick horror series

Some obvious moments, so-so dialogue, and questionable acting derail big reveal

scream season 1 title card

A new generation of victims!

When Nina Patterson (Bella Thorne) is brutally murdered in the town of Lakewood, the town wonders if the curse of the infamous murders of Brandon James could be tied to the killing.  Nina however had secrets…blackmail, bodies, and affairs seem to haunt the town and Nina has ties to them all.  When more killings begin to occur and they seem to center around Emma Duval (Willa Fitzgerald), Emma questions why the killer seems to be interested in her and her mother.  Emma and her friends find themselves in a deadly game where anyone could be the killer…and uncovering the truth is the only way to stop the murders.

Scream—Season 1 (also called Scream:  The Series) aired on MTV from June 30, 2015 to September 1, 2015.  The series was released to mixed reviews but a relatively strong viewership.

scream season 1 episode 1 pilot willa fitzgerald

Wait…OMG! You can still talk on these phone things.

I liked Scream, I liked Scream 2, I tolerated Scream 3, and thought Scream 4 was fine.  I was pretty hesitant about a Scream series, but with so much horror on TV, the idea of exploring a horror/slasher TV series seemed ripe for exploration.  While the series is fun to binge, I don’t know if it works as a series.  Due to the series structure a ******Spoiler Alert******* is in effect for the rest of the review (including pictures).

As brought up by the character in the series, horror/slasher films need to keep a certain pace and if I hadn’t binged the series, I don’t think the pace is fast enough.  Bodies don’t stack up fast enough and the deaths aren’t gruesome enough.  With series like Hannibal pushing the limits of the network television, it feels like Scream’s stories and plots (sometimes unfortunately) should bring more horror and gore.

scream season 1 episode 1 pilot killer mask

There’s a new killer in town!

Scream leads you to expect something from the plot, and one thing you expect is that you never the killer until the big reveal.  The films and the series banks on this, but the set-up of the season doesn’t put enough mystery to keep you going at points.  A big event in the sixth episode pretty much exposes an obvious character, and the fact that the Scream films used multiple killers also hurts this series…you know that the obvious killer might be the real killer (or one of them).

The series struggles plotwise, but it also struggles with its actors.  Even in Scream, some of the “ultra-hip” dialogue was rather chunky and didn’t role off the tongue of the actors.  Most of the actors in Scream were slightly better actors…here, the actors just don’t seem up to par.  Not everyone is bad, but the plot does hang on a lot of them being decent (and there are one or two that are not).  I like Bex Taylor-Klaus (and enjoyed her Arrow as well) and Willa Fitzgerald is ok as the lead (though generic).  The male leads are all dull and interchangeable (except Tom Maden who is just irritating as “the Jake”).  The show also needs Amelia Rose Blaire to be good as Piper Shaw…who becomes the obvious killer early on.

scream season 1 episode 7 ending willa fitzgerald blood

Having your boyfriend’s blood/brains sprayed across you is just a right of passage…get over it!

Visually, the show isn’t too bad.  As mentioned, it could be gorier since gore is selling more in horror today.  The film has a few Saw aspects to it, but it feels like the killer should have committed to over the top killing.

Scream—Season 1 is problematic, but it is also short and sweet.  The series does leave you waiting for the next season and despite the problems, I will check it out…but only in a binge watching fashion.  If you liked Scream, Scream:  The Series is worth checking out, but don’t expect it to be as fast and deadly as you hoped.

Scream—Season 1 Complete Episode Guide:

scream season 1 episode 1 pilot nina killed bella thorne


1.1       Pilot Airdate:  06/30/15

Nina Patterson (Bella Thorne) releases a viral video of Audrey Jenson (Bex Taylor-Klaus) and her friend Rachel Murray (Sosie Bacon) making out and is promptly slaughtered at her home.  Now, the town of Lakewood is wondering who the murderer is and if their town boogyman Brandon James could have returned.  As Emma Duval (Willa Fitzgerald) and her friends attend a party to celebrate the life of Nina, Emma’s mother Maggie (Tracy Middendorf) wonders if her past has come back to haunt her.

scream season 1 episode 2 hello emma willa fitzgerald phone

“Hello, Emma”

1.2       Hello, Emma Airdate:  07/07/15

Rachel worries about people finding out about her relationship with Audrey…but becomes the next victim of the slasher.  As the police continue to look for Tyler (Max Lloyd-Jones), Emma tries to get past Will Belmont (Conner Weil) sleeping with Nina.  A GIF links the killer of Nina to Brandon James and sets off a media storm.  Piper Shaw (Amelia Rose Blaire) brings her podcast Autopsy of a Crime to Lakewood to investigate the murder.  Noah Foster (John Karna) gets closer to Riley Marra (Brianne Tju) as the mysterious new guy Kieran Wilcox (Amadeus Serafini) makes moves on Emma.

scream season 1 episode 3 wanna play a game riley killed brianna tju

“Wanna Play a Game?”

1.3       Wanna Play a Game? Airdate:  07/14/15

Emma learns Rachel’s death wasn’t a suicide and reveals the secret to Audrey.  Mr. Branson (Bobby Campo) finds his relationship with Brooke Maddox (Carlson Young) is becoming more problematic.  Will and Jake Fitzgerald (Tom Maden) worry their secret blackmail business will be exposed, and Jake finds Will is holding their cash until everything is shut down.   Emma uncovers her mother’s secret and begins a game of cat-and-mouse with her phone stalker.  When Tyler appears to resurface, a police sting is set using Riley.

scream season 1 episode 4 aftermath bex taylor klaus willa fitzgerald


1.4       Aftermath Airdate:  07/21/15

Riley has been killed, and the police have found Tyler’s body.  Sheriff Clark Hudson (Jason Wiles) has linked Tyler to the murders, but Emma, Audrey, and Noah worry the killer could still be loose.  A clue to the Brandon James murder leads Emma and Audrey on a dangerous recon mission.

scream season 1 episode 5 exposed blackmail tom maden conner weil


1.5       Exposed Airdate:  07/28/15

Emma deals with the exposing of her sex tape with Will.  Sheriff Hudson learns that Mayor Quinn Maddox (Bryan Batt) has brought in his former love Detective Lorraine Brock (Sophia Brown) to work on the case.  Will and Jake ramp up their blackmailing, and Will reaches a breaking point when Emma learns the truth about how they met…leaving an opening for Kieran.   Piper opens up to Emma about her past while Jake reveals to Brooke what her father has done.  Noah and Audrey look into Branson and extracurricular activities.

scream season 1 episode 6 betrayed bex taylor klaus arrested


1.6       Betrayed Airdate:  08/04/15

Emma finds a morning after her night with Kieran that her mother has also made the jump with Sheriff Hudson.  Detective Brock finds extra evidence of Audrey’s DNA on the mask leading to suspicion that Audrey could be involved…and Emma and Noah find evidence that it could be true.  Emma’s mother tells Emma the truth about her relationship with Brandon.  Mayor Quinn sets out to even the odds with Will.

scream season 1 episode 7 in the trenches carlson young bowling alley

“In the Trenches”

1.7       In the Trenches Airdate:  08/11/15

Will is missing, and Jake has confessed his part in the blackmail scheme…with Piper as the only possible witness.  When Jake, Brooke, Noah, and Emma go to search for Will at an abandoned bowling alley, they find much more…and Emma could learn more about Brandon.  Emma questions if she can be involved with Kieran with her feelings for Will.

scream season 1 episode 8 ghosts tom weil cut in half


1.8       Ghosts Airdate:  08/18/15

Emma is suffering waking nightmares after seeing Will cut in half…but finds her nightmares could be revealing the truth about the past.  Noah and Audrey uncover Mr. Branson’s secret and suspect he could be the murderer.

scream season 1 episode 9 the dance sheriff jason wiles killer

“The Dance”

1.9       The Dance Airdate:  08/25/15

Branson has been arrested, but Emma needs complete proof that he could be her half-brother.  With Piper, Emma tries to research Brandon’s past to find out the truth about her mother’s relationship.  Brooke is forced to stay with Jake but finds that Branson might not be the man behind the murders.  As the school prepares for the Halloween Dance, the killer might make his final move!

scream season 1 episode 10 revelations killer revealed piper amelia rose blaire


1.10     Revelations Airdate:  09/01/15

Branson is loose, but evidence points to him not being responsible for the murders.  As Emma questions who she can trust, her mother faces heartache.  Brooke’s party might turn into a bust when the killer shows up and all will be revealed…almost.

Related Links:

Scream—Season 2 Review and Complete Episode Guide

Scream (1996)

Scream 2 (1997)

Scream 3 (2000)

Scream 4 (2011)

Author: JPRoscoe View all posts by
Follow me on Twitter/Instagram/Letterboxd @JPRoscoe76! Loves all things pop-culture especially if it has a bit of a counter-culture twist. Plays video games (basically from the start when a neighbor brought home an Atari 2600), comic loving (for almost 30 years), and a true critic of movies. Enjoys the art house but also isn't afraid to let in one or two popular movies at the same time.

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