Summertime tends to be considered the season for blockbusters, popsicles, and beach antics (if you live anywhere near one). And obviously there’s nothing wrong with liking that. At the same time, horror fans often think about our favorite summer horror films and also think deeply about how close we are to the Halloween season. Ultimately it doesn’t matter what the season is because horror is suitable for any time of year. But considering we’re in July, it’s fun to revisit summer horror films that delight in the season.
Instead of recommending summer horror flicks, I’m presenting a few (there are many more obviously) summer horror franchises instead! Yes, that’s right you will have plenty of films to choose from.
The Texas Chainsaw Massacre
Say what you will about The Texas Chainsaw Massacre franchise, you can practically smell the summer atmosphere in the films. A franchise that’s been analyzed quite a bit and focuses on a cannibalistic family is the right way to enjoy summer. The Texas Chainsaw Massacre franchise isn’t perfect and there are quite a few films that can be placed in the recycling bin. But for the most part the franchise is worth binging during the summer months.
Friday the 13th
It wouldn’t be a proper summer horror franchise list if I didn’t include Friday the 13th. The franchise is full of people having sex and getting murdered. Oh, and also Jason Voorhees dying and coming back to life several times. Friday the 13th may not be the most satisfying horror franchise if you want phenomenal acting and intensity in every entry. But if you’re looking to feel like you’re at a summer camp, on a boat to New York etc., Friday the 13th will scratch that summer slasher itch. And Jason is an iconic horror villain, so there’s also that.
Problematic, horrible characters, and bonkers deaths is the best way to describe the Sleepaway Camp franchise. It focuses on Angela Baker who goes on multiple killing sprees at summer camps. The first film in the Sleepaway Camp franchise is hailed as a cult classic and I won’t reject its status. But keep in mind that gender identity isn’t depicted sensibly in Sleepaway Camp. Other than the obvious issues throughout the franchise as a whole, the films are silly and not to be taken that seriously. Not only that but they serve as fun slashers to check out during the summer season.
I Know What You Did Last Summer
Including a summer horror franchise that literally has summer in the name might seem cliché. But considering how little that matters, I’m including it. The I Know What You Did Last Summer franchise focuses on people making wrong decisions and paying for them. The first film is an especially worthy summer slasher that is a must-watch if you want to really embrace summertime. Not to mention it has one of the best chase scenes in horror history. The franchise as a whole is very up and down (including an Amazon Prime series that ran for 1 season). As long as you skip the third film, you’ll be just fine!
An evil being that terrorizes folks for ages? What better way to spend your summer than dealing with that shit? The It franchise focuses on Pennywise (an evil being from space) that feeds off fear and primarily eats and terrorizes kids. And the only people that are able to stop him are a bunch of kids called the Losers Club. Both the ‘90s mini-series and the two-part remake take place during the summer and the feeling of summer is captured quite well. The town of Derry, Maine has the right setting for a creepy summer. There is an upcoming television series that’s set in the universe of the remakes. So we’ll see more Pennywise ruining lives and eating children soon.