A Lifetime of Happiness: Movies, TV, and Video Games

Nightmare on Elm Street (1984)

February 09, 2022 Steve Bennet-Martin, Stephen Martin-Bennet Season 1 Episode 105
A Lifetime of Happiness: Movies, TV, and Video Games
Nightmare on Elm Street (1984)
Show Notes Transcript

The Steves cover the 1984 blockbuster horror movie Nightmare on Elm Street, along with what's making them happy in pop culture today.

What's Making Us Happy?
Ghosts on NBC
Abbott Elementary on ABC
Pokémon Legends: Arceus on the Nintendo Switch

Nightmare on Elm Street discussion includes:

  • The real life origins behind Freddy Krueger
  • Stretching their budget for the amazing (at the time) special effects
  • Name that celebrity!
  • Symbolism in the dreams and classroom discussion
  • Freddy- child molester or murderer? Or both?
  • Nancy as a Final Girl
  • How their parents are the worst

Ending- Any music or audio clips were borrowed from the original source material.

Support the show
Steve:

Hello, returning happys and new listeners. This is Steve Bennet-Martin,

Stephen:

and this is Stephen Martin-Bennet. And

Steve:

welcome to a lifetime of happiness. The podcast where we take you on our journey through some of the movies, TV shows, and other bits of pop culture that are helping to keep us happy. We'll hopefully bring a smile to your face along. And

Stephen:

today we're continuing final girl, February, as we jumped into the dream realm as Nancy faces off against Freddy Krueger in the 1984 horror classic a nightmare on Elm

Steve:

street. But first my love what's been making you happy.

Stephen:

So it is new sitcoms for the year that are making me happy. We've talked previously about ghosts on CBS.

Steve:

Yes. Grateful for our season.

Stephen:

Yes. And. We're getting a season two. Excellent. Yay. So that in and of itself made me very, very happy. And then there is another sitcom that is on ABC called Abbott elementary. That is making me quite happy these days. And avid elementary is from king to Brunson, who we knew from. I'm a black lady sketch show on HBO and also has fin familiar faces. People may know like Lisa Walter and Sheryl Lee, Ralph who Shirley Ralph was one of the original dream girls in the movie or on Broadway. But she's also been a lot of other wonderful things. The shows filmed in like a mockumentary format. It's just done really, really well. So if you have ABC watch avid elementary, CBS for ghosts, you can find them on demand. It's worth your time. Yes. It's

Steve:

always nice to have a couple of like quick 20, 30 minute comedies to help brighten your day. Yes.

Stephen:

Now what about you? My darling, what's been making you happy.

Steve:

Well, it's been making us both happy. I feel we've been playing the hell out of Pokemon legends. Archaeus

Stephen:

I do think we have spent, you know, Five or 10 minutes on it?

Steve:

More like 50 or 60 hours for me at

Stephen:

this point. It's okay. I'm not there yet, but yeah, it's been a lot and it's

Steve:

amazing. It is, it is a huge step forward for the Pokemon series. It's the first one that feels like a fresh new thing in years. I feel like the last, like, I mean, certain shields of course were new and exciting, but they still very much follow the formula. This meanwhile breaks all the rules in the best way possible. Oh

Stephen:

yeah. Like this is the most excited. I have been playing a Pokemon game in a very long time. Like I finished brilliant diamond, shiny Pearl. And it was good, but for some reason I didn't feel compelled to finish. The decks and that one, but there is, and I went straight from that pretty much with a one week break into Archaeus. I can't stop with Archaeus like, I just want to keep coming back. I said the other night that it makes me kind of remember when we were playing Haiti's you're like, okay, just one more run. Yes. I can just do one more run. You know, I've got time for that.

Steve:

It's been great. So I'm sure down the road, maybe we'll do a full episode once we both finished the game. But in the meantime, yes. If you're a gamer and you ever loved Pokemon, definitely check it out 100%.

Stephen:

I fully

Steve:

agree. Yes. Now let's head on over to nightmare on Elm street. Why did you choose this? Or why did we choose?

Stephen:

So it was one of the first horror movies I ever saw growing up and I pretty much. As a five or six-year-old like, whenever it came out on video, my brother had rented it and he's eight years older than I am. So he was a pretty much appropriate age at that point. And you know, teenager. And I remember watching it probably when I wasn't supposed to. And being terrified as a small

Steve:

child. Yeah. And I mean, I had a similar experience a couple of years older. I was probably like in high school, but I had watched it with friends and none of us had ever seen it before. And it scared the hell out of all of us who were watching it in my parents' basement. And just that like kind of, I think it helped that all of us were watching it for the first time. So none of us knew what to expect and just that, you know, excitement. Anxious terror was contagious. And I remember, you know, I'm not big on remembering my dreams to begin with. This was when I remember having nightmares for a couple of days after

Stephen:

well, and people already have nightmares and you know, no matter how old you are, you can wake up from a bad dream and you are scared or you still feel uneasy. And just the idea that someone's going to attack you in your nightmare. Yes.

Steve:

Yeah. I mean, it's when you're at your most vulnerable, so it's a little scary. Yes. Whole idea.

Stephen:

Well, tell us a little bit about how it all came to be.

Steve:

Well, it is a supernatural slasher film written and directed by west Craven and produced by Robert Shane with

Stephen:

Craven. That's seems like a name I should

Steve:

know. We've covered one or two of his movies. He is a horror icon after all. We previously discussed them at length in our coverage of the screen movie. Well, Shane produced the franchise through the 2010 remake as well as 2000 sevens hairspray and the Lord of the rings trilogy. Wow. Yes, he was even the principal in Freddy vs. Jason.

Stephen:

Okay. Well then I have definitely seen him and he has been with us a long time. Now it stars Heather in camp as Nancy Thompson. John Saxon is Lieutenant Dawn, Tom. Ronnie Blakely as Marge Thompson. They're all related. Yes. Robert England as Freddy Krueger and Johnny Depp in his film debut as Glen.

Steve:

Yes. Now my engine camp is mostly known for her role as Nancy, but was also Marie in the TGI F series. Justin, I used

Stephen:

to love just the 10 of us. It was really good. And she was the nerdy sister with the glasses? Yes. So it was definitely a This was kind of like going against form for her.

Steve:

Excellent. Meanwhile, staying true to form sex. And we also knew from black Christmas in a very similar role as the cow. Yup. While Blakely previously headstart in the 1975 movie Nashville

Stephen:

and Robert England though, he has been in many things. Is Freddy Krueger and he is going to be seen very soon as Victor Creel and stranger things.

Steve:

Yes. Meanwhile, Johnny Depp was never heard from again. Yup.

Stephen:

I mean, too bad for him. It was a one and done faded into

Steve:

obscurity. Yep. He's been in a couple of things. Most notably for me, at least where the pirates of the Caribbean yeah. Trilogy

Stephen:

and you know, or for legit. However, may there have been, but yeah. And also, you know, anything with that other director, Tim Burton. Yeah. Now the movie had a budget of $1.1 million. Is a lot for a horror movie at that time. I think

Steve:

really, I was like, how do they make so many awesome effects? Cause we've covered other movies, even from the eighties that had budgets of three to $4 million and it didn't even come looking the way that like this one looked they did. They did really well in terms of the special effects with what they

Stephen:

had. The, the one that always amazes me the bed. I think I read that that was just built upside down. But it had a box office of $57 million. It launched a franchise and set a new standard

Steve:

for whore. Yes. New line cinema was in its infancy at the time and was ready to go bankrupt before the movie's success. So at times it's referred to the house that Freddy built. Yeah.

Stephen:

Like if you're like these days, if you're watching. Horror movies. You're going to be thinking of, you know, the guys that do the new Halloween trilogy house bloom house. Exactly. And, but back in the day, if you saw a movie, a horror movie, and at the beginning, it said new line cinema, you were like, yes, this is going to be

Steve:

good. Yes. It's. I remember that through the nineties and even into the early aughts. Now, one thing that you don't have in every single horror movie out there is that this is actually based on true story.

Stephen:

Wait, there's somebody that actually jumps into your nightmares.

Steve:

Yes, exactly. Possibly at least it's inspired by several newspaper articles printed in the LA times in the seventies among, among referee refugees who fled to the U S because of war and genocide and Laos, Cambodia and Vietnam. Upon their arrival, they began to suffer from nightmares that were so horrible. They refuse to sleep. Some of the men between the ages of 19 and 57 died in their sleep soon after resulting in a phenomenon medical authorities of the time, because it was the seventies called Asian death syndrome. It was believed it was either due to sudden unexplained death syndrome or cardiac issues, which were actually ruled out by the coroner in the majority of the cases. So they just did randomly die in.

Stephen:

That is so creepy and you know, the whole urban legend that if you die in your dreams, you die in real life, which is why you wake up right before you hit. If you fall off a cliff or something like that. And there's always, oh yeah, no. My cousin's friend died in his dreams and he died in his sleep. Really? How do you know he died in his dreams? He's. Yeah. Anyway, tell us more.

Steve:

Freddy Kruger was inspired by an elderly man that a young Craven saw walking on the side path, outside the window of his home and was named after a bully from Craven's adolescents. His sweaters red and green design was designed after he read a 1982 article in scientific American that said that those were the two colors that were most clashing to the human race. Or to me, they look the same because I'm red, green color

Stephen:

blind. So what do you see when it does it, do you see stripes,

Steve:

stripes? I was kidding there. I don't see just a one flat color. It's more just I'd have trouble picking a rose out of a, like a green Bush. Gotcha. His burnt face was to provide a terrifying. Quote, unquote, wasn't just another mask. And his weapon of choice, the knife gloves were designed to stand out from the other guys, knives and other traditional weapons after a scythe was faced out of earlier drafts. Yeah,

Stephen:

the I think if he had had a SIFE like death it wouldn't have been. As effective. I mean, obviously a site that's still going to be scary, but yeah, I

Steve:

feel like that his personality would have had to change with the weapon though, because in this, like, this is very personal. Yes. Yeah. Now he was originally written explicitly as a child molester as he should have been, but Craven reframed him as a child murder in order to avoid accusations of exploiting a highly publicized child molestation case in California at the time. But in the remake, which everyone loves it is made explicit. Yes. And, and I was kidding about that. We loved it. I

Stephen:

did. I thought it was

Steve:

fantastic. Yes. On Fridays nature, Craven states that in a sense, Freddie stands for the worst of parenthood and adulthood, the dirty old man, the nasty father and the adult who wants children to die rather than helping them. He's the boogeyman and the worst fear of children, the adult that's out to get them. He's a very primal figure, sort of like Cronos devouring, his children, that evil, twisted, preferred father figure that wants to destroy and is able to get them at their most vulnerable moment, which is they're asleep.

Stephen:

It just gives you the warm and fuzzies when you hear

Steve:

that, I think, oh yes, certainly. So let's get into the movie. I'm sure we'll have lots of fun stuff along the way to go for my research.

Stephen:

Yeah. So it starts off as the credits are beginning with a small fixture. Freddie building his now famous gloves and his workshop. And you know, it leads to the title, a nightmare on Elm

Steve:

street. Yes. We then transitioned to Tina and her nightmare where she finds herself in a regular room being chased by Freddy who coroners her justice. She wakes up only to find claw marks tore open her night down.

Stephen:

Her mom's boyfriend is too horny to deal with it in her mind. Got to cut your fingernails or stop that kind of dream in one way or the other.

Steve:

Yeah. And with that, what's the scare. Like, I mean, the boiler room is pretty scary, especially with the way that they have the lighting and the steam and everything. What's the scariest, horror scape you've had in a nightmare. Honestly,

Stephen:

for me, it's whenever it's taking place in situate in areas. That I'm familiar with like some of the scariest dreams from my childhood. The location was at my house so that, you know, especially if it took place in your bedroom or something, and then you wake up from the nightmare and you're still feeling it. And then, you know, it was just right here and you're still there. So those types of things where it's something based in reality, That it's a place I'm familiar with. That's what gets to me, what about you?

Steve:

I would say me as well, as I mentioned earlier, I'm not going to be as much fun with the remembering your dreams or nightmares because it's not something I'm really great at, but I do know that you know, certainly the ones where I'm like, is this real life? Am I awake? Or am I asleep? Those are the scariest ones

Stephen:

in our church growing up. We actually so down in the basement they renovated part of it to be like, kind of. Teenagers area of the church, but then there was another room that you stepped down several steps into, and it actually is the boiler room of the church. And I remember all of us being very sure that Freddy Krueger was in that boiler room. And then there were. Other kids like Fred, he can't be in a church. It's a sacred holy place. And I'm like, then go in the boiler room and find

Steve:

out. Yeah. And then she

Stephen:

died. Yeah. What's interesting during the scene and it always stuck out at me from a child. And even when we rewatched it is that you see the goat with the bell around its neck and it's bleeding, making that noise. And also this, it comes again in Freddy versus Jason. So it's not a thing that was forgotten. There's nothing really online that talks about its significance. What do you think.

Steve:

I think that goats are oftentimes seen as symbols of sacrifice. And so it's kind of like similar, like leading a lamb to the slaughter, having a goat because these kids aren't being targeted because of anything that they've done, it's because of the things that their parents have done in some ways, they're the sacrifice. The parents. Freddy or like Friday's taking from them. So I think that it's very much like they're comparing like the goat to the children being a sacrifice for Freddy to get revenge on their parents.

Stephen:

I completely agree. And to this day I still have some negative connotations to goats, not the baby goats that you see in pajamas on the videos online. Those are great. But like in the movie, which with black Thomas, like as soon as there was a goat, it was like, Yeah. So the next morning we hear girls jumping rope and singing the Freddy nursery rhyme, which is way we scared each other as children doing the whole one, two friends coming after you three, four bed, or lock your door five, six, grab your crews. Seven a yeah, just stay up late nine, 10, never sleep again. Yes. And Tina meets up with Nancy Glenn and Nancy just insist. It's all a dream. What did you think seeing the teams all together for the first time? I

Steve:

would say you know, certainly I could see a lot of the stereotypes that are later found in horror, you know? Nancy as the good girl, Glyness kind of that hero ish boyfriend, while you have Tina who, you know, I feel like, you know, at first thing that we see her first, before we even seen Nancy there's part of me that like the first time through that was like, oh, she's going to be the final girl, but she was kind of Casey Bechard yes, she certainly was. And there was also a rod that the bad boy who, you know, we know what's coming for him because he has a in,

Stephen:

and it's interesting that his character seems the most of a caricature for that's kind of dumb kind of rude and things. And in front of you versus Jason. There's definitely a character that's kinda modeled after him because after he, after that character dies and his girlfriend is having a dream, like he's kind of a Dick to her and it's all about like having sex. He's definitely the rod character in this movie.

Steve:

Yes. I mean, he did have a couple moments, like later on when he was talking about his dream, but overall, you know, he's very much a caricature of the horny teen almost like Curt from last week with final girls.

Stephen:

Yes. But more malicious.

Steve:

Yes. Later that night, Glenn does a charade with a tape deck and airport noises to convince his mom that he's staying with his aunts. When in reality, he's staying with Nancy at Tina's while our parents were out of town, because Tina's still freaked out from her nightmare and doesn't want to be alone.

Stephen:

That's it's called a plot device because you know, it's interesting. That Tina's, that freaked out from one dream, but, you know, we're, we're meant to believe it. And Tina's fear of it helps us to believe that it is that scary. And I love that whenever they're talking Nancy and Tina start realizing that they had the same nightmare of the same man in the dirty red and green sweater with the fingernail.

Steve:

Yes, rod van crashes, there gets together to hook up with Tina, of course, which will help her fall asleep. I'm sure. Now with Glen doing his little thing with the tape deck to make, you know, to fool his mom into thinking he's staying at his aunts that well, what was the farthest you've ever gone as a team to convince your parents? You were to somewhere other than where you told them you would have. Honestly.

Stephen:

Yeah, I didn't have to. Oh, no. Yeah. Sorry. Mom and dad had very specific rules, but we had, as long as we, and they were easy rules to live by, like I had friends that were like, w how do your parents let you do so much? I was like, they expect this of me. I tell them what I'm going to do. I do it. And so they give me leeway to. Do things like that and sweet, but boring.

Steve:

I used to have my, like, luckily one of my friends like had like a much deeper voice than you would expect from a high school students. He got to be the one who normally got to call our parents pretending he was one of the dads of the place that we were hanging out to say like, yeah, it's okay. There'll be home in time or whatever.

Stephen:

Yeah. I never had to do it all in Denver. Good.

Steve:

That makes one of us,

Stephen:

Glen even tries to put the moves on Nancy that night, but she's too shaken by her nightmare. Worried about Tina and makes him sleep on the couch. And after rod and Tina have sex, we also find out rod had a similar nightmare.

Steve:

Yes. Now, while Nancy sleeps the cross comes off the wall and some figure comes from the wall, sees Tina isn't there. And it

Stephen:

leaves like that whole thing was creepy to me because like we're meant to believe that it happens in dreams, but. Can it come into reality or was this part of a dream? Like it's very ambiguous in that thing, but it always freaked me out, but I love that the cross had to be off the wall before he could access the wall. Yes.

Steve:

Now later that night, Tina wakes up clearly in a dream and is called outside. She walks into the dark foggy alley. Tina. Friday, he chases her and begins attacking her. Meanwhile, in the real world, she is screaming and thrashing while rod watches on and har as Freddie drags, a bleeding out Tina up the wall and across the ceiling. Yeah,

Stephen:

that whole scene. I remember it seeing it for the first time, freaking me out one, like I didn't understand as a child. How it could possibly happen. Like how are they doing this what's going on? And it was even more terrifying. And then like, because you know, rod actually does care about her and he's seeing this happen. He's seeing her harmed and you know, the typical macho jock you would think, oh wait, they can jump to the rescue. But I think sometimes we don't give enough credit that, something like that. You don't mind. I was happy enough to freeze anybody.

Steve:

Yeah. I feel like that's one of those iconic deaths because of not only the visuals of her going up in over the wall, which is something that's just like, again, impossible, physically impossible out of a nightmare or out of a dream. But just the fact that he, you know, it was that someone who loved her was having to just be forced to watch it hard, just completely didn't totally helpless because he was unsure of what was going on. And so

Stephen:

of course he flees out the window as Nancy and Glenn break into. Yes.

Steve:

And over 500 gallons of fake blood we're using making the movie. I'm sure about a hundred of them were used for this because there was a lot of blood and

Stephen:

350 of it. We're the bedroom scene with Glen later on.

Steve:

Exactly. Now at the police station, we meet Nancy's parents who were standoffish and almost definitely divorced or at the very least separated Nancy, his dad's a detective. Nancy insists it. Wasn't rod that it was the nightmares. Gina dreamed this would happen. Yes. The next morning, we now see the now famous exterior of Nancy's house before she tells her mom she's going to school.

Stephen:

Honestly, like I had major, major problems with this. If your best friend was just murdered, would you want to go to school? And would your parents have let you. Okay. The screen kits. Yes. So we saw Sydney and Tatum and everybody go to school after Casey Becker, but that was a girl. They had class with it. Wasn't somebody that you hung out with. This is allegedly Tina's very best friend and her thought seven hours after her best friend was murdered is to go to school. I think

Steve:

that's for the Platte device.

Stephen:

No, but that's one of the plot devices. And I know it needs to happen for her to have some of the iconic scenes and stuff. So if this had happened to you, would your parents have let you go to school?

Steve:

No, probably not, but then again, maybe they probably would have, if I want it to, I just don't think I would've wanted to. Now this house, would you move into this house?

Stephen:

It depends on if the interior. Actually it looks like the movie interior, or if it's just the use, the exterior.

Steve:

Well, you can actually check it out on, on most Realty websites because it is a real home. And it was recently sold for 2.9, $8 million earlier this year. I wonder

Stephen:

if part of that was strictly because this was the nightmare house.

Steve:

Yeah, I would think so now on the way to school, she gets pulled aside by rod who swears it. Wasn't him. Nancy's dad interrupts him in rod fleas, but gets arrested

Stephen:

anyway. Yeah. So that was a whole thing.

Steve:

Her dad was using her as bait

Stephen:

because he was like, you know, rod would probably show up at some point. And I think Nancy truly believes him there that he didn't do it because the rod she seeing pleading with her and terrified it isn't because he's terrified that he killed Tina. Like you could see that he was being truthful in his fear that I didn't do it. Yeah.

Steve:

Now at school, Lynn Shay is teaching a lesson about Hamlet and Julius Caesar and Nancy falls asleep dreaming of Tina and her body bag

Stephen:

Lin Shaye. I love her. So she is now a horror icon. Yes. And was in the insidious and where that's, where she became like a list horror, but she has been in horror for many, many years. But tell us a little about her Shakespeare lesson.

Steve:

Yes. In Hamlet, there is a reference to Julia Caesar and an allusion to how Hamlet Sr was betrayed by the people closest to him. Meanwhile, in this movie, the kids are ultimately betrayed by the acts of their parents, those closest to,

Stephen:

and I, and I even hope that in this lesson, it's kind of a nod to John carpenter's Halloween because in all of the Halloween movies, whenever the kids are in. It's always a story that relates to fate and how Laurie and Michael Myers type of thing. So I'm hoping that this was even Wess way of saying, Hey, I like what he did with the school thing. I'm going to put the same type of analogy in here.

Steve:

Yeah. I love the game of if it's a classroom lesson, that's bothered to be certain in the movie. What's the connection. Cause that actually goes back to even Buffy the vampire Slayer. Growing up. I was like, Hmm, this relates to the episode. Wow. Literature.

Stephen:

But back to the nightmare, Nancy follows the trailer. Tina's Bobby bag and makes it to the school's boiler room on the way she passed a female home monitor who ended up being Freddy? Where's your pass? Screw your pass. No running in the hallways, Nancy. And then once there are Freddie Tonsor in corners, her and she starts screaming. It's only a dream. It's only a dream and she burns herself on the boiler pipe in the nightmare, which wakes her up in the real world. And she now has a burn, a burn on her arm.

Steve:

Yes. And that was chilling and certainly comes into play later with that connection between the dream world and reality.

Stephen:

Right. Because you know, the first time we see Tina with the scratches on her nightmare, And the mom says you, you to cut your fingernails or stop that kind of dreaming and you kind of think, well, maybe she did slash her own thing. Well, there's that op there's that option, but now it's pretty much verifying. Oh shit. What happens to your, in your dream? Happens in the real

Steve:

world. Yes. And one thing I love about Freddy as a villain is that his taunts are very different to other horror villains at the time who are either like typically silent and don't say anything. And they're also typically physically larger and more silent while he's actually. It's talkative. And the number of times, especially in this movie, the way he liked torments them is like by dismembering himself or, you know, doing gross things to himself as well, scratching his nails along metal surfaces

Stephen:

that whole worse than nails on a chalkboard sound is forever in any child's memory that has seen this movie.

Steve:

Yeah. I mean, what's your favorite part of Freddy or why he's such a great villain?

Stephen:

I do like that. He's talkative in this one. I feel, you know, in the later ones where it goes comedy, that I'm like, you know what, maybe it would be better if he was silent because you, you don't run the risk of having as much of a cartoony villain. If they don't say anything. So while I do love his

Steve:

the fact that he does talk maybe less as more,

Stephen:

or, you know, if they would have kept it in a horror realm, because it's also similar to the Texas chainsaw movies, even though Leatherface is silent, those ended up going horror comedy as well. And. And Friday the 13th even did it because, you know they went kind of campy Jason X and Jason takes Manhattan. And I don't know, I guess I have a thing where I like stay all horror or like scream is always horror comedy. It's always a blend of. And I wish that with this, they might have just stayed with the horror more. And Robert England is great and his delivery is fantastic, but they're not as scary once. He's funny. Yes. Yes.

Steve:

And Nancy goes to the police station to question rod and makes the connection that they're all being stocked in their nightmares by the same man that night, Nancy is taking a bath and is singing Freddie's nursery rhyme. And then she falls into. We see Freddy's claws drift up the bathtub between her legs and a very sexually menacing visual. And after a brief wake up, knock from her mom, she drifts back to sleep and is pulled down underwater. Although she manages to wake herself

Stephen:

up, that always scared me. And I refuse to take a bubble. For a couple of months after I saw this movie, I can

Steve:

imagine, especially at that young age, I was never much of a, like being allowed to take a bath when I was growing up because it used to as much water. Oh,

Stephen:

see, I had, I had a bunch of tub toys, like and like I would stay in there for ever playing with all these toys. And, but I would not do bubble bath if I couldn't see the bottom of the. Yeah, we weren't

Steve:

doing it. Yeah. And what I found interesting is that in this scene, the way that they accomplish this effect was a special bottomless bath tub. The tub was put in a bathroom set that was above a swimming pool.

Stephen:

Yeah. Like I was always wondering like, when you're watching it, you're like, cause you get to see from below that she's being pulled down into the depths and there's like the light kind of like in movies and TV shows. Out on the frozen pond and it breaks and that's kind of what you see and, you know, the, whenever you're watching it, you're kind of like if he pulls her down far enough, is that going to close over and she's not going to have a way back up into the tub. Like that kept going into my mind. It was done really, really

Steve:

well. Yes. I mean, well, in a premonition to the Sidney and Billy Loomis years later in scream, Glen visits, Nancy that night coming in through her window. Nancy complaints that without the sleep, she looks 20 years old, which is cute since that's how old the actress was

Stephen:

at the time. But so love that someone that's allegedly 16, 17 that's like, oh, I haven't gotten any sleep. I look like I'm 20. Like yeah,

Steve:

I know. I can't, I couldn't do that. Imagine if I was just like, oh, I haven't slept. I looked like such crap. I look like I'm 40.

Stephen:

You know, oh, I'd set you on fire.

Steve:

Yes. Now she then asks him to watch her sleep while she tests something. She wants to go look for some.

Stephen:

So then she exits her house and it's dark and foggy and she's back in the alley searching. And she says, Glen, are you watching any pops up from behind the tree and says, yes, at this point we're confused. If it's real or a dream. She's in places we've seen and, but Glenn's there and she's talking to him and we know that she had asked him to watch out for her, but then in her nightmare, she walks pretty much from her house to the police station. And she sees Freddy preparing to murder rod from the window. And now we know she's definitely in a dream. She screams for Glen to wake her up. Dumb ass he's asleep and spread Freddy finds her and chases her home and in the scene that, oh, it's another one that always sticks with me on the way up the stairs. Her feet are getting sucked into goo on the stairs, but she ultimately makes it back up to her room and they continue to struggle. And the alarm finally goes off and saves her. And she calls Glenn out for being a worthless piece.

Steve:

Yes. Rightly so. Yeah. Now one thing I love again, making the special effects budget work for it is the melting staircase was Robert Shay's idea based on his own nightmares of being sucked into the stairs. And it was created using pancake mix.

Stephen:

So weird how they did it. Like now with higher definition things, you can see that where she stepping are holes filled with stuff. But back when we were originally watching it on TV, You couldn't see

Steve:

it yet. Now aware of Friday's plans for rod, they go to the police station, but our dad drags his feet on letting them back to cm. Ended up being too late to see Freddy hang rod with his bed sheet, making it look like a suicide.

Stephen:

And this has all happened very quickly because now we're at Tina's funeral and Nancy described. So Freddy looks like to her parents and they share a knowing look that they obviously know exactly who she's talking about. And they don't like that. She's saying that. But her mother insists on taking her to see a sleep disorder clinic and in her deepest sleep, she has another nightmare that we don't actually get to see. And they're saying, you know, if she was having a nightmare, it would range in the 5, 6, 7 range and hers is at 30. And so you know that this is severely a nightmare. And it gives her a gray streak in her hair like rogue and Freddy claw marks on her arms. And Freddy's hat in her

Steve:

hands. Yes. And the next morning her mom is secret drinking or not. So secret drinking. Nancy points out that Fred Kruger is embroidered on the hat. As the argument escalates, auntie Nancy calls out her mom for being a boost hound, and she slaps Nancy in retaliation and made me realize how horrible pretty much all of these parents are in the movie. They're not only ignorant or oblivious to what's going on, but they all have character defects and are still quote unquote sending today.

Stephen:

I I'm, it makes me wonder, so it didn't Nancy's mom start drinking because she, even though she later com says that she did what she did for her children and the city. Is she drinking because she can't internally deal with what they did.

Steve:

Probably something that got progressed as she had that trigger. But I'm sure that, I mean, at this point it seems like she's a full on alcoholic. I can, I can't imagine her having been a normal drinker ever. It just says something that maybe she just drank with problems when she did drink, which was rare. Then when she began drinking every day after all of this happened,

Stephen:

And so Glen and Nancy are on this lovely bridge over a canal. And he's talking to her about Balinese dream skills while she's reading up on booby. And he goes, you know, in, in the Balinese dream skills, they say, if you see a monster in your dream, you turn their back on them. And that takes away its power and it'll disappear foreshadowing.

Steve:

Yes, that night Nancy comes home to find bars on her window. And her mom brings her to the basement to finally share who Fred Kruger was. He was a child murderer who killed 20 neighborhoods. When they caught him, someone forgot to sign the arrest warrant. So the parents cornered him in the boiler room where he used to take his kids and blew the whole place up with gasoline.

Stephen:

Mommy killed him. And now you've been kept as close a souvenir.

Steve:

I know

Stephen:

it's okay. Now, Nancy, you can sleep.

Steve:

Yes. So of all the parents who cornered him, how or why to Nancy's mom get to keep the claws.

Stephen:

So my thought is. That Nancy's dad kept the claws because he was the cop and took them from the crime scene. And even though he doesn't live in the house anymore, he probably stored them in their old furnace back in the day and,

Steve:

you know, sit and take him with him when he

Stephen:

moved out. Right. Because in his mind, you know, out of sight, out of mind, probably.

Steve:

Yeah. Now what are your thoughts on this backstory? Both this version and the version we get in the remake. So

Stephen:

in my mind child murderer is still going to be child molester that kills his victims, which is what I, I believe he did in the remake as well. And it's, so it gives the parents justification for murder. And that's one of the things that in a story so that you don't totally turn your back on. Characters you want them to feel justified in their actions that this was somebody that needed handled that normal justice had failed them and they had to do something to protect their children and other children, or this was going to keep happening. I like the story.

Steve:

Yeah, no, it makes perfect sense. And especially for the time, I'm sure nowadays with elevated horror, they would try and make it where he was actually innocent. And the being burned alive is what turned him evil.

Stephen:

Well, and, you know,

Steve:

in the remake, they kind of hinted at that until it was like a twist that he was actually

Stephen:

guilty and I was watching and I was originally like, oh no, they are not going to make him innocent. No, Oh, dear God, are they going to make him innocent? And then it was just a trick. He was pulling on them and I was like, oh, that is such a Freddy thing. And to

Steve:

do too. Yes, it is. It was very good. Now Nancy's new plan is to have Glen watcher sleep, which I don't even know why you would trust the sky again. And in her sleep, Nancy will grab a hold of Freddie and then Glen will wake her up, ringing the both of them back to the real world where Glen can knock out and or kill Freddy.

Stephen:

That's logical.

Steve:

He's been shown to be very trustworthy and very capable. And the two of them can easily handle Freddy in the real world. Question, mark question.

Stephen:

And at this point, Glen still doesn't seem like he believes her and he falls asleep in his own room. Glen's mom wakes him up to check on him and we also meet his dad who doesn't want Glenn involved with Nancy anymore after all this craziness, which is a really interesting thing that in a few days, time, Like you would think that Nancy has the reputation of this town. Good girl. And in a few days, time somebody's father is like, you stay away from the crazy girl.

Steve:

Yeah. Yeah. I mean, they appear to be the only normal parents in the movie, which made me wonder, I mean, since Glenn doesn't get the nightmares on his own and his mom seems nice. And like the, one of the only parents without character defects. Can we assume that Glen's parents weren't involved in Kruger's murder?

Stephen:

That's kind of what I'm assuming, because it all seems, I don't know if, if they had been involved. I think that. They would have been putting two and two together by now.

Steve:

I, yeah. And I also think that if they had been involved, Freddie wouldn't have just killed Glenn beak like that quickly. He would've wanted to torture him with torturing him and his nightmares while this one, you know, Glenn's death happens so quickly and it was in an effort to taunt Nancy, that it felt like it was more about. And killing her boyfriend than it was killing Glen. Yeah,

Stephen:

exactly. Speaking of killing Glenn, Nancy falls asleep in front of Tom's here, that he's going after a boyfriend with the grossest thing and the tongue coming out of her phone saying, I'm your boyfriend now?

Steve:

Yes. And she can't get out because her mom is drunk as fuck on the couch and won't let her out through the

Stephen:

yeah, because she has put a deadbolt that uses a key from the inside. That's safe. Yep. And Glen is sucked into the bed along with his TV and everything else only for a blood Geyser to come out. And as we said, this is where the rest of the blood budget went. When I was a kid we had water beds. So I fought that what was happening was that he had gotten sucked into his waterbed. From the way it went down and exploded. It wasn't until I was older that I was like, okay, real bad. But as I said, from what I heard that, and if you watch it, they put the bed on the ceiling and built the room upside down so that when it guys heard out that instead of having the force to go off, it just went down. I could

Steve:

see that. Yeah. Now Nancy now begs her dad to come wake her up in 20 minutes because he's just. Capable as Glen is. Yeah, I

Stephen:

I'm going to get him and you're gonna arrest him, daddy.

Steve:

Yes. She then sets booby traps all around her bedroom before falling asleep with a 10 minute timer, which is funny. Cause there's traps looked like they took more than 10 minutes to prepare. Exactly. And even with her intent to kill, they're still not half as terrifying as some of those booby traps, Kevin set up in home alone. Like

Stephen:

I think she needed some pink cans. Yes.

Steve:

Now in her dream, she goes down to the basement to get Kruger's glove, but it wasn't. She then goes from the basement downstairs to the school's boiler room. As he chases her, she jumps off a balcony out into her front lawn as the 10, second countdown begins. And she tackles him right as she wakes up.

Stephen:

Oh, oh, that's. Oh. And because the time's ticking down and you're like, is she gonna find him in time? And at first she doesn't think it worked and she's looking around her room and then he jumps up from the other side of the bed behind her and she uses her traps to enjoy. Since as expected, her father is nowhere in sight and the adults are continuing to ignore her. You know, even though she's screaming out the window in the basement, she dialysis him with her mom's liquor and liked him on fire, leaving him to burn alive for the second time, thinking that he's done. She finally gets her dad inside and they go down, they find scorched footprints leading up to her mom's bedroom and they're too late to save her. And. Part that I don't think really works in the movie. The Burke remains of her mom gets sucked. Poulter guys to like down into the bed.

Steve:

They ran out of their budget after the whole blood upside down

Stephen:

spewing out. Like I would have believed it more if the corpse had just stayed on the bed. Yeah,

Steve:

that happens now after her dad leaves Kroger than appears from the bed and with Nancy's back to him, she tells, I know your secret. I know the secret. Now this is just a dream. I take back every bit of energy I gave you. You're nothing. You're shit. As he goes to attacker, we seem fake. This also works for ex-boyfriends.

Stephen:

Oh, and then it immediately, we see her walk out under her front yard with her mom. Who's looking great and says that she's not drinking anymore, but it's kind of a very foggy morning. And she gets into the car with our friends who were all now alive and all of a sudden the car top, which is red and green. Comes up and it traps them in the vehicle with the windows rolling up. And the mom is just waving a kind of idiot wave. And we see the girls jump roping with the Freddy nursery rhyme as Freddy's arm burst through the window and pulls Nancy's mom inside. Yes. And what do

Steve:

you think of the ending of my love?

Stephen:

I have issues and part of it I'm like, oh, that's great. And then in another part of it, I'm like, well, whose dream was. Wait, didn't she kill a Freddy? Like what, what was this like? And we don't really get an explanation of if she got rid of Freddy, because we know it didn't happen in real life because there was the fog, the little girls from the shining jumping rope. So it just leaves me with more questions. Was it really interesting and gave you a shock at the end of the movie? I wonder how

Steve:

it fits. Well, there were two alternate endings, the first of which she goes out into the car you know, and it's a very foggy similar and the mom's left on the doorstep. Just waving them goodbye. And that's it. No, no. Top-down and we're kind of left. Wondering, is this a dream? Is this real what's happening? And then in a very And one of the other drafts, Shay wanted Freddy Kruger to be the one driving the car as the kids were screaming. It all became very negative though. Shay said I felt a philosophical tension to my ending that's so sixties it's stupid. I refuse to have Freddie in the driver's seat and we thought up about five different endings. The one we used with Freddy pulling the mother through the doorway, amused us all so much. We couldn't not.

Stephen:

And, and

Steve:

that's fine. Yes. And so even with the ending, we are left to believe that, you know, that that is another dream or nightmare of sorts. And so I would say that Nancy is definitely a final girl, wouldn't you?

Stephen:

Absolutely. And we know she does survive because she is the star of number three. Yes.

Steve:

Now, how does she fit the final girl?

Stephen:

So in all the ways that the we've talked about, she's not blonde. She does not have sex. We don't see her drink. We don't see her smoke. She starts off as the good girl and over the course of a two week period or so becomes more bad-ass, you know, Like Jamie Lee Curtis had 24 hours or less with Halloween. At least she's got some time to build up and do some research and kind of figure out what's going on here. I think it really

Steve:

works. Yeah, I agree. I mean, I would say that. A lot of things seem to be happening to her, which like also seems like she didn't have much agency, which also fits the old-fashioned to final girl trope. Yeah. I would say that there's really not many ways that she doesn't. I mean, her final girl power is where like the booby traps, but even that's something, you know, she, she doesn't get physically fit or anything like that that we oftentimes see. But I think that that's better because the power here is in the dreams. That's not in the real world. Right.

Stephen:

And maybe her final girl. Is realizing that she has the power over the dream realm and can take the power away from him. Yes.

Steve:

Now this isn't the last, as you mentioned that we see of Nancy, this has become a franchise with a total of nine nightmare on Elm street movies. If you include Freddy vs. Jason in 2003 and the failed 2010 reboot.

Stephen:

Yeah. And I enjoyed a good, like, I actually enjoyed all of them. After awhile, you have to enjoy them for what they are. As I mentioned changing, because number two was just painful, weird. Three was most like one like one and three. But

Steve:

so I'd say four is my favorite problem.

Stephen:

Well, one is four

Steve:

and that dream warriors? No, that's three. Oh, okay. Nevermind three is my favorite. Yeah.

Stephen:

Yeah. West. Didn't like the idea of a franchise.

Steve:

Yeah. He skipped most of the seagulls except for being the screenwriter for three in 1988 and then writing and directing new nightmare in 1994.

Stephen:

So favorites from the franchise, excluding the original. Let's take that off because most everybody's going. That's the best one dream warriors for sure. And I super enjoyed Freddy versus Jason. Like it was the perfect amount of intentional camp and I enjoyed it. What about you?

Steve:

A dream warriors? I would say as well as the first one. Of course. And Freddy versus Jason is fun. I

Stephen:

agree. And

Steve:

I would say that that's my favorite Jason movie.

Stephen:

Yeah. Yeah. I would agree with

Steve:

that. Yeah. And you know what I also love

Stephen:

is there are listeners. I,

Steve:

it is, yes. I love our listeners and we would love to hear from you and what you thought of this episode and the nightmare. Movie or a franchise. You can do that by emailing us@happylifepodatgmail.com. You can

Stephen:

get into with us on all the socials, whether that is Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, or tick-tock at happy life

Steve:

pod. And until next time everyone stay happy.