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Today in Nerd History | May 9

Sharpen your machetes and avoid the campgrounds, because today we’re diving deep into the chilling waters of Crystal Lake.

Inclusion on this list does not imply that the entry is family friendly, only that is was a nerd culture milestone. Parents should, of course, use discernment.
1980: Friday the 13th (Theaters)

The iconic slasher film “Friday the 13th” first terrified audiences back in 1980. This groundbreaking horror flick not only introduced one of cinema’s most enduring villains but also set a new standard for the teen slasher genre, influencing countless films and becoming a cornerstone of horror culture. Let’s explore some “Nerdy Facts” about “Friday the 13th” and its impact on both the big screen and the nightmares of viewers everywhere.

 

Nerdy Facts:

  • The Birth of an Icon: While the hockey mask would later become synonymous with the character Jason Voorhees, it’s interesting to note that in the original “Friday the 13th,” Jason is not the primary antagonist; instead, it’s his mother, Pamela Voorhees, who is the killer, seeking revenge for her son’s death, which she blames on the camp counselors’ negligence.
  • Budget to Box Office Success: Made on a modest budget of approximately $550,000, “Friday the 13th” was a massive commercial success, grossing nearly $60 million worldwide. Its profitability spawned a vast franchise including sequels, a television series, novels, comic books, and extensive merchandise.
  • Cinematic Influence: “Friday the 13th” helped solidify many of the slasher genre tropes, such as the isolated setting, the young group of victims, the POV shots of the killer, and the final girl narrative, where the last surviving woman confronts the killer in a final showdown.

“Friday the 13th” remains a pivotal film in horror cinema, noted for its ability to evoke fear and suspense through innovative cinematography and a compelling backstory. As we remember its release on May 9, the legacy of Crystal Lake continues to be a touchstone for horror aficionados and filmmakers alike. So, here’s to the eerie, the scary, and the thrillingly unforgettable moments of “Friday the 13th.” Happy Nerd History Day to all who appreciate a good scare and the art of suspense!

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Station Manager of LTN Radio and co-host of the "Nerd History Podcast" & the "Two Words Podcast". Matt is a third-generation radio station manager who has done pretty much every job in the radio industry. Matt is the father of two boys and a little girl. It's probably the best thing about him.

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