MTV has renewed Scream, and in the process killed Season 1.
Let me put this out there: I am delighted to know there will be a second season of Scream. I just wish I didn’t know Season 2 was coming when Season 1 is only halfway over. Way to kill the anticipation, MTV. The early renewal sucked all of the tension out of the impending season finale. Will the mystery of Nina, Rachel, Tyler and Riley’s murders be solved this season or will they be dragged on forever like the search for A over on Pretty Little Liars?
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What makes Scream so much fun to watch is the piecing together of the puzzle. The show has a core group of truly great characters — Audrey, Noah, Emma and Brooke are at the top of that list — but the feeling that anyone can go at any time has been diminished by the announcement that the show will continue with the same crop of characters. Two episodes with no murders made it clear the expendable, non-contract actors had already been taken out, but I was hoping the stakes would continue to be raised. If MTV had to announce the renewal, know then they should have kept the part about the same characters coming back to themselves.
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Scream has proven it is much more than a simple slasher movie turned TV show. On a weekly basis, the show grapples with bullying, the use of technology to anonymously shame others and building and rebuilding high school friendships. There is a strong foundation of storytelling to build upon, but I am not sure I want to see Emma tortured for multiple seasons.
Since the show isn’t going the anthology route, I can only assume it will be pressing forward further into the future. Even if the Brandon James mystery is wrapped up, does that mean Emma and her friends will become embroiled in another horror story in Season 2? If so, plausibility will go right out of the window. On the flip side, if the Brandon James mystery isn’t solved, then fans will end up frustrated and feeling like they have wasted their time.
Scream is extremely serialized in nature with a narrow focus. Yes, the original movie turned itself into a franchise, but in the world of television pulling off that many spin-off killers all chasing Emma will be a tough sell. This is definitely a case where MTV should have kept as much about Season 2 under wraps as humanly possible until after the finale. Let the viewers speculate between seasons, not before. The feeling of urgency Season 1 was building up is gone. Apparently, Scream has all the time in the world to wrap this mystery up.
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I don’t want to be speculating about what comes next when I am still trying to untangle the supposed Brandon James murders, figure out who is terrorizing Emma and reeling from new revelations about the duplicitous mayor. Scream builds momentum each week. Even when there’s no kill, there’s the reveal of the killer’s lair or a new clue is dropped. Knowing ahead of time that Season 2 is coming has sucked the fun out of the chase. Now I’m wondering if MTV expects me to spend years sorting through red herrings as the show and the mystery are dragged out.
A renewal wasn’t a bad idea. Scream is a fun summer show with talented young actors. I love watching it, and I know the rest of the fan base does, too. I also like suspense, though, and knowing Season 1 might not offer up the satisfying conclusion I was hoping for is way more terrifying than whoever is lurking beneath Brandon James’ mask.
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