Seeing how A Nightmare on Elm Street celebrates its 30th birthday in November, we’ll surely see tons of tribute/retrospective pieces about the film and its glove-wearing protagonist hit the web. Well, we’re joining the party a little early with this post, but we’re also taking it in a different direction. Instead of discussing the impact of Wes Craven’s franchise or anything like that, this article takes a more playful look at how Freddy Krueger has progressed over the years. No, not in terms of his appearances in his own films, but the ways that he’s been spoofed, parodied, and transformed through video games, another type of film, and comedy.
Freddy Goes Virtual
Like any movie franchise worth its weight in merchandising money, A Nightmare on Elm Street was transported to the realm of video games to rake in more cash off Freddy’s back. As it turns out, though, gamers who played the Nintendo Entertainment System title weren’t actually getting the real experience. The original version apparently allowed you to control Freddy, who is tasked with killing children (of course) as they attempt to scatter his bones around town. However, this concept didn’t fly, and it was scrapped in favor of a game where you control the kids trying to get rid of Freddy.
In addition to this game, there’s a “forgotten” Freddy game out there that was only released on PC and Commodore 64. If you want to know more about it, head over to I-Mockery for a full rundown. But’s not all for Freddy and gamers. The sweater-loving murderer also makes an appearance in the Mortal Kombat franchise reboot from 2011. He’s a fully playable character and you can get a preview of what he brings to the game here.
If we’re talking about Freddy’s narrative taking a decidedly filthy turn, you can look no further than the adult film industry. One of the more popular freaky Freddy movies is the hilariously titled Wet Dream on Elm Street. Adam and Eve writes that it’s “the scariest XXX movie you will ever see,” which is probably accurate considering there are few creepier characters than Freddy. In this film, though, he apparently takes on the role of an adult shop clerk who overcharges, only to get burned alive by his angry customers.
Ridiculous, right? Well, there are actually a ton of these parodies, and you can see more of them at The Bloody Pit of Horror. You know, if that’s your sort of thing.
Freddy Gets Goofy
To be fair, a more lighthearted version of Freddy isn’t anything new. Since the first film was released in 1984, the guy’s had a certain way about him that’s equal parts nasty, horrific, and humorous. The quips only increased throughout the franchise, with bits of Freddy Vs. Jason being downright foolish. The stoner character, anyone? But I digress.
Krueger has been spoofed for comedic effect a number of ways over the years. Most recently, he appeared in an episode of over-the-top Adult Swim program Robot Chicken, in which you learn the origins of his insanity. Some years earlier, Freddy made an appearance on The Simpsons with his slasher pal Jason, as the two star in the “couch gag” (aka the opening bit) in the “Treehouse of Horror IX” episode. That goofball cameo was especially great because the original Freddy, Robert Englund, provided the voice for the animated version.