Sunday, 27 March 2011

Charlie Brooker: The New Jigsaw!

This week I endured what is allegedly the final installment of the 'Saw' franchise ('Saw 3D: The Final Chapter'). I say allegedly because it still made over $45 million off a $17 million budget and producers just can't help themselves with figures like that.

But it's called 'the final chapter' you might ask? Well so was 'Friday the 13th Part 4' and that was followed a year later by 'Friday the 13th: a New Beginning'. Horror monsters never die. Even if the film's called 'Freddy's Dead: The Final Nightmare', the inevitable sequel will still be rolled out a few years later called something along the lines of 'Wes Craven's New Nightmare'!

So even though the 'Saw' franchises uber-psycho Jigsaw has been dead since about the third film (excuse my vagueness, the film's have tended to confuse and numb my brain more and more with each installment), that hasn't stopped the sick and twisted scriptwriters churning out more fresh meat for the grinder year on year.

Jigsaw's legacy has been continued since his death by a (considerably less interesting) psychotic detective character but I write here today to argue for the legacy to be passed on! If the Saw franchise is to survive and beat a horrible box office death, it needs to move forward with a new psycho killer. Competition with the inevitable Paranormal Activity sequels is going to be fierce and I think there's only one man to tackle the job.

Coincidentally, the week I watch Saw 3D is the same week I begin reading 'Charlie Brooker's Screen Burn'. His attacking of television and particularly 'reality' TV with a venomous wit and sense of outrage, reminded me of Saw 3D's new victim and his manipulation of the media and his eventual downfall.

This anger and sense of superiority to the makers of crappy TV shows makes Mr Brooker the perfect man to take up Jigsaw's role as the judge and torturer of a new breed of victims. I'm only 30 pages into the book but already I've discovered enough Brooker/Jigsaw type traps to fuel the next Saw film. Brooker talks of replacing a TV host with 'a naked amputee who sits on a barbed-wire toilet seat repeatedly threatening to murder members of the audience... while toying with a bloodied switchblade'. Now there's an opening to the new film right there!

What about a victim who has to 'bash his own brains out with a pewter kettle', or jump head first onto helicoptor blades so 'the top of his head was lopped off and his brain got sliced into a tumbling flock of slippery grey mind-steaks'. How about 'a protracted final sequence in which each participant is glued to a deckchair and kicked down a stairwell. Forty-seven million times.' (This is actually vaguely similar to what happens to Linkin Park's Chester Bennington in Saw 3D).

Brooker's writing is full of such ideas for vicious audience-pleasuring torture. He even suggests the people who deserve punishment; 'whoever told him that this was a good idea deserves to be sealed inside a packing crate full of jackals and razor wire and rolled down a hill'. He's even up to date with modern horror trends suggesting 'a man with a camcorder glued to his forehead feeding himself into a threshing machine'.

So if Twisted Pictures decide to continue the Saw franchise (or hey why not just start remaking them... it's been 7 years since the original!), then I beg them... contact Mr Charlie Brooker. He'd make a great Jigsaw or just get him to write the script! He did zombies and Big Brother with 'Dead Set'... now he can do murderous serial killers and make a start with bloody Kirstie and Phil.

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