The “Final Girl”of the FRIDAY THE 13th series is one of the most coveted roles in the series. Hell, it’s a role that is arguably the most important in the movies- with the exception of Jason and his Mama, of course. While the early FRIDAY films were often accused of exploiting women, it’s important to note these women who all defeated Jason or had a helping hand in his demise. Oddly, only one character came back for a sequel… of course she was killed off before the opening credits. For this list, I’m ranking the top 8 final girls (sorry, not including anything in the New Line Cinema installments where the series gets weird.)
8. Rennie- Friday the 13th, Part 8: Jason Takes Manhattan
The eight installment is decidedly one of the worst installments in the entire franchise. It was so bad and had such terrible box office returns that Paramount sold the franchise to New Line Cinema after it’s dismal performance. This installment had a lot of sins to overcome: a misleading title, aborted character development, and a teleporting Jason. That said- most of those sins could have been forgiven if we were given a strong final girl. Unfortunately, Renny didn’t fit the bill. The actress was fine and the character is actually the strongest and most developed character in the movie, but as a foe against Jason, she just didn’t stack up with her predecessors. She ran, screamed, got forced to shoot heroin, but when all is said and done, it was the underground toxic water that killed the adult Jason and turned him into child Jason.
7. Megan- Friday the 13th, part 6: Jason Lives
Sure she’s fun. However in a film of well developed characters, Megan stands out as one of the most feisty characters in the entire series. But, like Renny from part 8, she doesn’t really have a hand in destroying Jason. It makes sense that Jason would be off’d by Tommy Jarvis since JASON LIVES marked the end of the Tommy Jarvis trilogy, but in a list of “final girls” Megan is just…there.
6. Trish-Friday the 13th: The Final Chapter
Trish deserves to be higher on this list. She’s compative with Jason and she has to protect her younger brother Tommy. She deals one of the final blows to Jason in what was supposed to be his official death. Unfortunately as a character I know nothing about her except she’s Tommy’s older sister and Ms. Jarvis’ daughter. Her age range is ambiguous (I think she’s supposed to be college student), her personality is woefully developed and unfortunately she’s the most bland of the final girls of the series. However she does a great job at fighting back at Jason and protecting Tommy.
5. Pam- Friday the 13th, part 5: A New Beginning
Rain-soaked white shirt be damned! Pam was a fun final girl. A NEW BEGINNING gets a lot of shit for it’s lack of the real Jason, a shoddy script, a soft-core porn vibe, and absence of anything resembling suspense, but it did give us Pam. She had an emotionally stunted, yet very hot, Tommy Jarvis and a very young Reggie The Reckless to protect. Pam, like the movie itself, is often overlooked as one the surprisingly stronger ranks in this category.
4. Chris-Friday the 13th, part 3
Chris has something no other character on this list has…besides brunette hair. She has history with Jason. After being attacked by him in the woods before the story begins her survival instincts were already in overdrive by the time she faced, the now hockey-masked, killer again. She wasn’t afraid to get in Jason face with a knife and fight back. I’m not talking Linda Hamilton in T2 or Sidney in SCREAM 2, but Chris held her own again Jason. At least in the released version of this film.
3. Alice-Friday the 13th
For someone in their early 20s going toe to toe with someone in their 90s, Alice cemented her role as the series first final girl. Not since Laurie Strode did audiences see, an otherwise, healthy young woman almost die at the hands from a killer who…strolled the whole time. After getting the shit slapped out of her repeatedly she finally mustered the courage to behead Pamela Voorhees. As the young kids would say, “she did that.”
2. Tina- Friday the 13th, part 7: The New Blood
Listen, if you have telekinetic powers and can’t defeat Jason, you may have to reevaluate if you’re really telekinetic or just near an open window. THE NEW BLOOD gave Jason a very worthy opponent in Tina, a young woman
who stood as a Carrie White substitute who also had with telekinetic powers. Spinning from the trauma of murdering her father with her powers when she was a young girl, Tina is also one of the most layered characters in the FRIDAY franchise. When she comes face to face with with Jason, she really fucks up his face. The special effects budget was put to good use as Tina’s powers made her more than your typical run of the mill final girl running through the rain in a white, soaked shirt.
- Ginny-Friday the 13th, part 2
While Alice from FRIDAY part 1 broke the mold for the final girl in the series, it was Ginny who created the standard that was never truly matched. She was resourceful, strong-willed and used her mind to defeat sack-head Jason. She used the child psychology that she was studying to ultimately defeat the child-like Jason. Alice was never the damsel in distress and completely held her own while being terrorized by Jason. She also didn’t take much shit from her
problematic boss/boyfriend Paul. Ginny is one of the strongest characters in all of 80s horror.