Before the “teen scream” horror sub-genre became ubiquitous, it had some key forebears. One of the most notable among them is Wes Craven’s 1996 Scream, which follows a phone-loving, mask-sporting killer who targets a group of high schoolers. If this premise sounds familiar, that’s probably because the film was so successful that it’s gone on to shape much of the sub-genre, spawn three sequels, and, now, inspire an MTV show.
The Scream series follows a group of high schoolers as they fight to ward off a masked killer, but the show also introduces a complicated plot and calls into question most of the protagonists’ relationships, motives, and actions. Scream has garnered a sizable fan following since its 2015 premiere, and followers of the show were pleasantly shocked by its surprise season two ending this August. As such, slasher lovers will be pleased to know that the Lakewood kids are coming back for more in an upcoming Halloween special and third season.
MTV officially announced today that Scream will come back for a third season. Though details about season 3, including its premier date, are still TBD, fans can look forward to the recently-announced Scream Halloween special, which airs next week. The two-hour special will take place eight months after the events of season 2, as protagonist Emma and her friends head off to Shallow Grove Island in an attempt to get as far away from their traumatic hometown as possible. Unfortunately, as often happens when a group of teenagers go on vacation in the slasher genre, the kids will face killer at Shallow Grove — who may be connected to their original foe. You can check out the special’s intriguing trailer, above.
It will be interesting to see whether this two-hour format helps or hurts the show, as its episodic format has allowed it to develop its complex plots more skillfully than the typical slasher film timeline. Introducing an entirely new killer and setting and resolving both within one special will certainly require a well-done script, so we’re itching to see if the series can deliver. Likewise, there’s no news on the third season — other than that it’s happening — so we don’t know if the show is up for a change in showrunners, cast, or premise.
Networks have seen mixed success as they try to capitalize on newer generations’ induction into the slasher fandom. The fate of Freeform’s Dead of Summer, for instance, still hangs in the balance. Hopefully this latest Scream news means that fans of the sub-genre will be able to continue enjoying a relatively fresh and interesting take on the longstanding premise, and the runners will be able to extend the show’s plot without tiring it out. Next week we’ll be able to see if the series can withstand the two-hour format, and if the events at Shallow Grove can make way for a scintillating season 3.
The Scream two-hour Halloween special premiers on MTV at 9 p.m. EST on Tuesday, Oct. 18. A season 3 air date remains TBA.