What if our beloved Saturday-morning cartoons took inspiration from the horror offerings on video-store shelves? Jason and Friends might be the result.
Before our TV shows were reduced to ever-tinier screens, and before computer rendering made cell animation a thing of quaint nostalgia, there was an era when kids (myself included) would rise at the break of dawn on Saturday mornings, pour a bowl of our favorite sugary cereal, and huddle in close to the benevolent glow of our tube TV to watch our favorite cartoons.
But what if our Saturday-morning cartoons were inspired by the horror movies that beguiled us on video-store shelves, the ones with the cool gory covers that our parents forbade us from renting until we were older?
To answer that question, online artist Frank’s Kid (real name: Mike Chiechi) has come up with the opening-credits sequence for an animated series we all wish existed: Jason and Friends. (Yes, that Jason.)
With a ’70s style that feels like a blend of Filmation and Hanna-Barbera, a hulking Jason Voorhees, complete with trademark hockey mask (suggesting this series came about sometime after Friday the 13th Part 3), can’t seem to interact in a healthy manner with the titular “friends,” leading to one bloody, rage-filled encounter after another.
I have to admire Chiechi’s little touches, from the Jetsons-style incorporation of Mrs. Voorhees’ severed head in a levitating fishbowl, to the fact that Jason’s first friend (whom he quickly dispatches with a machete) bears an uncanny resemblance to Alice (Adrienne King), the series’ original Final Girl. Near the end, a hockey-masked canine cohort gets spattered in someone else’s blood, which answers the question of what really happened to the dog that went out the window in The Final Chapter.
You may think I’m spoiling the best parts of this inspired short, but not unlike Too Many Cooks or that similar intro for the Watchmen cartoon, Jason and Friends truly needs to be seen to be believed. Enjoy!
Let us know if you would like Jason and Friends to become a series in the comments.