Are the Friday the 13th novels compatible with the film series?

The Friday the 13th novels build on events seen in the classic horror franchise, but do these slasher spinoffs have any canon connections to the movies?

There is a lot of Friday 13 novels circulating, but are they canon with the film franchise? John Carpenter Halloween arrived in 1978 and helped set a blueprint for the slasher genre. the original Friday 13 was one of the first films to copy his plan while increasing the gore. It was a surprise hit and launched a long-running horror franchise. Like Michael Myers before him, Friday 13 Jason Voorhees quickly became a horror icon

There was a vengeance of one Friday 13 film per year in the 1980s, but at the time of the 1989s Jason takes Manhattan, the formula became very squeaky. Jason returned sporadically in the years that followed, including 1993 Jason Goes to Hell: The Last Friday and the long-awaited crossover Freddy versus Jason. There are currently twelve Friday 13 movies, but a messy legal battle over the rights to the series has stalled it indefinitely.


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A franchise as successful as Friday 13 is sure to have many offshoots, and Jason has appeared in various comics and video games over the years. Even devotees may not realize that there are about 20 Friday 13 existing novels. This includes novelizations of various entries, with Friday the 13th Part 3 – oddly enough – having been adapted twice. From Friday 13 the novels are a series of books for young adults dubbed Camp Crystal Lake Series and a whole Jason X saga. The question is, are any of these books canon?

The future Jason in Jason X.

It’s up to the individual readers, because there’s nothing in the Friday 13 novels that really clash with anything in the movies. the Camp Crystal Lake Seriesfor example, is set after the events of Jason goes to hell. These books see different characters find Jason’s cursed hockey mask – with a dubbed novel The Curse of Jason – become possessed by his evil and commit murders. Jason is in hell during these novels and does not physically appear, and in the canon timeline, would not escape until Freddy versus Jason. Novels author Eric Morse later released a dubbed ebook Jason Voorhees brand who linked his novels to Friday the 13th: the series.

Likewise, the Jason X spin-off novels, which include catchy titles like planet of the beast – located on planet 666 – and death moon, builds more on the events of that 2001 sequel. It sees the military attempt to clone Jason and create new supersoldiers, but Jason escapes and does what he does best. Since Jason X was set so far in the future to avoid conflicts with modern sequels, these Friday 13 the books could easily be considered canon. Other spin-off novels like Friday the 13th: Church of the Divine Psychopath are more or less self-contained, although this book refers directly to Jason goes to hell canon, as it features the start of the FBI operation that resulted in its destruction. In the absence of a new sequel, perhaps fans of the series should give the Friday 13 novels to try. Canon or not, they have some guilty pleasure value.

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Andrea G. Henderson