Slasher: Guilty Party is the second season of Slasher, a Canadian horror anthology series created by Aaron Martin.
Despite Slasher previously airing on the soon-to-be-defunct network, Chiller, it has since become a Netflix original series.
Season 2 follows the events that occur at a summer-camp-turned-commune after five former camp counselors return to recover the body that they left behind five years earlier.
The following review contains minor spoilers from Season 2.
Review of Slasher: Guilty Party
Upon learning that their hiding spot for the remains of murdered camp counselor Talvinder may soon be compromised, Peter, Dawn, Noah, Susan, and Andi decide to spend the weekend at a commune, located a convenient distance from the body.
Shortly after their arrival, however, they discover that someone has moved the body and begun to target not only them but also those from the commune — Renée, Antoine, Wren, Glenn, Judith, Keira, Mark, and Gene.
Both groups having been stranded in the woods with no viable means of contacting or reaching the outside world, it soon becomes evident that at least one of the thirteen individuals on the site of the commune is a threat to their safety.
Despite a rushed and clichéd opening that features pieces of a flashback of the events leading to Talvinder’s murder, Slasher: Guilty Party manages to transition between the past and the present in a straightforward yet effective manner as the season progresses.
Each episode features flashbacks that provide background information regarding the events leading to Talvinder’s murder and/or the individual characters isolated at the snow-covered site of the commune.
As a result, the majority of the potential victims/killers become more than just flat characters — almost everyone trapped at the commune is revealed to be “guilty” of something, as the season’s title would suggest, which ultimately affects how they are perceived by viewers.
That being said, viewers’ opinions of certain characters are likely to become conflicted as the eight-episode season progresses, contributing to the ongoing mystery regarding the killer(s) and their motive(s) for murder.
Flashbacks and characterizations aside, the victim scenes throughout the course of Season 2 are [overall] highly effective in showcasing the gratuitous violence that is expected from a television show within the slasher genre.
Each victim of the killer(s) meets their demise in a manner that is almost always disturbingly graphic, revealing just how easy it is for the killer(s) to exploit the surrounding environment to their advantage(s).
Subsequently, it becomes apparent — especially to viewers — that regardless of whether someone is inside or outside, they are still at risk of a violent death.
Although viewers are generally able to predict when someone is about to die — unfortunately, the structure of the season results in deaths oftentimes being rather predictable, especially during early episodes — viewers won’t necessarily know how their death will occur.
This reality encourages viewers to acknowledge the killer’s potential presence during scenes in which one character or a small group of characters are isolated from the other potential targets.
Although the incorporation of flashbacks and violence are both individually effective elements of Season 2, their combined effect is also worthy of discussion.
Slasher: Guilty Party, from the beginning of its first episode, establishes the fact that at least five of its characters — the former camp counselors, to be specific — are by no means innocent.
However, as the season progresses, and each varyingly immoral victim is removed from the list of suspects, viewers may begin to consider individual instances of morality.
Do some characters — especially those that are known to have committed particularly despicable acts — deserve to become victims?
And, if so, to what extent is considered appropriate?
Though the answers to these questions that arise throughout the season aren’t explicitly provided, viewers have the ability to reach their own conclusions.
Based on viewers’ personal experiences and/or views of morality, those conclusions may vary.
Pumpkin Rating & Conclusion
3.75 / 5 Pumpkins
Although there are some issues relating to the season — particularly in regard to the inclusion of clichés and the pacing of the narrative — Slasher: Guilty Party is successful as both an addition to the Slasher series and a standalone television show.
Through the incorporation of scenes from both the past and the present, the majority of featured characters are established as more than just potential victims, resulting in a degree of realism that is oftentimes absent from the genre.
Furthermore, the general and specific moral dilemmas presented throughout the season have the potential to create interesting discussions regarding morality.
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Image Reference: Dread Central