Throughout the little sneak peaks and the premier episode (airing on MTV at 10pm on 6/30/15) the audience is repeatedly instructed to care about the characters. You have to care if the teacher pays too much attention to the girls, care if the girl forgives the jock boyfriend, care if the basketball team wins, that way you care when one of them dies. Unfortunately, aside from the tutorial instructions, there is nothing goading you into actually caring about these characters. While there are noticeable parallels to the Scream movies, I see way more allegiance to the ABC Family series “Pretty Little Liars”. This does not seem shocking since MTV harnessed the creative power of Mina Lefevre (former ABC Family VP of Development and Programming). That being said, sit back and hear me out:
Audrey Jenson resembles Mona the jilted BFF of Hanna who leaves Mona behind once she becomes beautiful and popular. Hmm…sounds a little familiar.
Emma Duvall, is much like Hanna the once nobody become somebody. She is the newest edition to the bad girls club but she retains some type of conscience. Emma even gets her own intense, mysterious out of town boyfriend just like Hanna gets Caleb. Let’s not leave out Riley and Noah who seem a little like the nerdy and aloof coupling between Spencer and Toby.
Either Nina or Brook could be the cold-hearted, self-absorbed Allison, and if you don’t buy it yet…Scream even rips off the student hooking up with her high school teacher (just like Aria and Ezra Fitz). Finally, ghost face and his little social media games don’t hold a candle to “A”. If you don’t see it this time around, watch “Pretty Little Liars” on ABC Family at 8pm next Tuesday and then watch “Scream” at 10pm. You can decide for yourself.
MTV seems to care less about the actual genre of horror and more about trying to harvest PLL fans as the series potentially draws to an end. Convenient it’s on the same night, right. It throws insincere nods to the original Scream but through its halfhearted narrative and lack luster acting, its pilot episode left me just not…caring.