I like to think I’m a flexible person who can understand the need to make changes to source material to better suit a new audience, medium or time period, but the new Ghostface mask for MTV’s Scream TV series absolutely enrages me. The original Scream is an all-time favorite so I’m always concerned when anyone touches it, but this MTV show has been raising some serious red flags that suggest that MTV could actually be dismantling everything that made the 1996 film so special, especially when it comes to the villain.
First came the news that the MTV show is not featuring the traditional Ghostface mask. Is that the end of the world? Not at all, but it does put an insane amount of pressure on the writers to find other ways to honor the original. However, based on what we’ve seen in the trailers thus far, that’s not happening either. I’m still holding out hope, but my patience is wearing very thin and this first look at the new mask (via EW) definitely doesn’t help:
What is that? That looks more like a BDSM toy than something that puts a fun, fresh spin on the Ghostface mask. Here’s how the show’s executive producer Jaime Paglia explains it:
“It evokes some of the Jason hockey mask and the white Michael Myers mask, but it’s still first and foremost evocative of the Scream mask. It’s sort of a reinvention while also paying homage.”
Apparently Wes Craven digs it:
“The new mask is cool and scary and takes the series into a new direction. It also ties into the story, which I won’t give away.”
Perhaps it isn’t fair to completely dismiss the mask based on a single image, but at this point, I certainly don’t find it cool or scary. The fact that Craven notes that the new look is connected to the story does make me think there’s still a shot it could work, but this comment from Paglia raises more concerns:
“The [original] mask is so iconic. If you were to have that mask in a television series, but you weren’t following any of the characters [from the original], I believe that would be misleading the audience.”
Nope, not really. But do you know what I do find misleading? Calling a show a Scream TV series and taking away one of the most iconic elements of the original film. Copy and paste remakes/reboots are no good, but it seems like Paglia and his team might have gotten a little too carried away with trying to make the series something different.