It’s spooky movie season, which means different things to different people. Some love their psychological horror films, while others love a good zombie apocalypse. Still, there are also more than a few fans of the slasher sub-genre that somehow keep those movies successful, even decades after the end of the supposed boom.
What makes a good slasher movie, though? Of course, you can always point to the final girl, like Halloween’s Laurie Strode, as a big selling point. The idea that, for the most part, someone survives whatever is trying to kill them. Beyond those figures, though, it’s the killers that make slasher movies interesting.
As the years have rolled on, it’s the killers, themselves, that have become pop culture icons, for better or worse. While we all love Nancy Thompson from A Nightmare on Elm Street, it’s Freddy Krueger that people dress up as. Likewise, while a new Halloween movie wouldn’t have happened without Jamie Lee Curtis returning as Laurie, it’s impossible to imagine her going toe-to-toe with anyone other than Michael Myers.
With that in mind, we’ve revisited arguably too many slasher movies to figure out who the best big screen killers of all time are. Once we had the best 12 figured out, we simply ranked then on how awesome they are. Because let’s be honest, the mark of a great slasher killer is how memorable they remain even years after they’ve left theaters.