The "Scream" franchise arguably stands head and shoulders over its competition. Get out of the way Michael Myers, Jason Voorhees, and Freddy Krueger, Ghostface is the reigning champ in the slasher genre. Since its inception in 1996, "Scream" has become a pillar in modern horror with six total films so far. And it's not likely to slow down anytime soon. The series works because of its deconstruction of horror, as well as its top-tier humor. It's funny when you least expect it, often bringing a bit of levity to an otherwise downright terrifying scenario. There's as much funny-bone tickling as there are amazing death scenes in "Scream." You can literally have your cake and eat it too.

From the very beginning, the writers have made sure the characters have personality, with quips always ready in their back pocket. The humor is never wasted and always hits the sweet spot. Whether that's in a throwaway scene or smack dab in a film's epic climax, its well-placed nature makes the story even more enjoyable. As we wait for "Scream VI" to hit theaters on March 10, 2023, let's walk through the series' funniest moments. Get ready to laugh your butt off.

Perfect Requel Sense

In "Scream" (2022), Mindy lights up the screen in every scene — none more so than during her epic monologue about reboot sequels, or "requels" as she calls them. Following Tara's (Jenna Ortega) attack and Vince's (Kyle Gallner) murder, Sam (Melissa Barrera) gathers her friends together to figure out who is behind the latest spree. Sam brings up the fact the first attacks were all on those connected to the original killers. Mindy then launches into her speech with a clear knowledge of modern trends. Oh, Randy would be so proud!

"See, you can't just reboot a franchise from scratch anymore," she begins. "The fans won't stand for it." She goes on to name works like 2019's "Black Christmas" and "Child's Play." She argues that "you can't just do a straight sequel, either." What needs to happen instead, she notes, is something new must be built. "But not too new or the internet goes bug-f***ing-nuts," she clarifies.

"Scream" follows numerous other films, including "Halloween" (2018), as essentials in the requel craze. Even as the requels erect something brand-spankin' new with fresh characters, there's one thing it also does: "It always, always goes back to the original!" Mindy spits absolute facts, from pointing out the Mary Sue in many modern films to lampooning "Scream" itself. Without her presence throughout the film, its commentary would quickly fall apart. It's not a guffaw-inducing scene, but it does elicit a hearty chuckle, so a top-10 place finish makes perfect sense.

Jamie Lee Curtis Is Always A Virgin

"Scream" owes everything to John Carpenter's "Halloween." The masked killer with a butcher's knife? Check. An iconic Final Girl? Double check. A creepy score? Triple check. While sticking to slasher tradition, it also takes the piss out of the genre with clever zingers and standout scenes. In the 1996 original, resident film nerd Randy (Jamie Kennedy) is the go-to source when it comes to knowledge about tropes and conventions.

During the third act, Stu Macher (Matthew Lillard) throws a house party, and everybody who's somebody is there. Randy being Randy pops in "Halloween" in lieu of playing music, and details the three rules to survive a horror movie. "For instance, number one: You can never have sex," he says, the crowd booing him. "Sex equals death, okay?" Number two details how you should never drink or do drugs. "The sin factor!" Randy proclaims. "It's a sin. It's an extension of number one. And number three: Never, ever, ever under any circumstances say, 'I'll be right back.' Because you won't be back."

Randy has numerous other one-liners throughout the film, but this is undeniably his best scene. Much like Mindy's speech in "Scream" (2022), the humor stems from the cutting way Randy deconstructs horror tropes as the film molds its very own. Breaking down the rules (and discussing Jamie Lee Curtis' virgin status in horror movies) might not be the most hilarious of the bunch, but it will forever make us giggle with delight.


"Scream 4" originally opened with Sidney Prescott (Neve Campbell) killing a random Ghostface in an epic 15-minute battle. What we got instead was a hilarious movie-within-a-movie-within-a-movie sequence. The film begins with Sherrie (Lucy Hale) and Trudie (Shenae Grimes) home alone. They receive a creepy phone call and then are slaughtered, expectedly. It turns out to be the opening of "Stab 6."

We then see Chloe (Kristen Bell) and Rachel (Anna Paquin) watching "Stab 6." Rachel deplores the state of horror. "It's been done to death — the whole self-aware postmodern meta s***," she says. "These sequels don't know when to stop," she continues, "They're all so predictable. There's no element of surprise …" Whammy, a knife to the tummy. Chloe asks in a sinister tone, "Did that surprise you?" Explaining why she did it, she adds, "Because you talk too much. Now shut the f*** up and watch the movie." Hilarious stuff.

And then the "Stab 7" title card rolls. Now, we have Marnie (Britt Robertson) and Jenny (Aimee Teegarden) seated in front of a TV set. "I don't get it," says Marnie. Jenny, the resident horror nerd, talks Marnie through why the "Stab" movies appeal to so many people. Naturally, their conversation is cut short by a Ghostface phone call, and they're both dispatched pretty quickly. The actual opening kill would be pretty ho-hum if not for the two fake-outs that came before. Wes Craven toys with expectations to build into a release of laughter by the end.

Derek's Song

Sidney is rarely happy in this franchise. With every single film, it's a matter of sheer survival against yet another Ghostface. She never gets a moment to just smile. "Scream 2" changes things up and gives Sidney a reason to laugh. When her boyfriend Derek (Jerry O'Connell) climbs up on a tabletop in the college cafeteria, he launches into a delightfully aw-shucks rendition of The Partridge Family's "I Think I Love You." He effectively gets his own "Top Gun" moment. "I think I love you / Isn't that what life is made of?" he belts. "Though it worries me to say / That I've never felt this way!"

Sidney looks on, both elated and slightly embarrassed, with a smile across her face. Derek continues ripping into the song's chorus and makes his way around the cafeteria, hopping from one table to the next. A fellow classmate whips out a dollar and tucks it into Derek's belt, as though he's a pole dancer in a strip club. It's as funny as it is very sweet. Knowing what we know about Derek's unfortunate fate, it's a moment that solidifies exactly the kind of guy he is: a good one. Derek's sweetness is why this scene lands at No. 7, a pretty solid slot for a lovable character that didn't deserve to meet an end at the hands of Mickey (Timothy Olyphant). Long live Derek, the little songbird.

Sidney, Sidney, Sidney …

Jill Roberts (Emma Roberts) is one of the most unhinged Ghostfaces. Look no further than her brilliantly deranged monologue at the end of "Scream 4." In the finale, she corners Sidney and reveals her true identity. "Hello, Sidney. Surprised?" she says. Her eyes gleam with a disturbed sparkle. It wasn't enough to kill Sidney. Oh no, it was always about becoming her. And about that friend thing? She doesn't need 'em. "I don't need friends. I need fans."

Jill could have lived a normal, ho-hum existence — go to college, grad school, and work. Instead, she argues the internet allows a kind of fame they never dreamt of before. "You don't have to achieve anything. You just gotta have f***ed up s*** happen to you," she adds. "Scream 4" came 11 years after the previous installment, so it's the natural progression of an ongoing franchise to reconfigure a few things. "New movie, new franchise," continues Jill. "There's only room for one lead, and let's face it, your ingénue days, they're over."

When her big speech is all done, Jill goes berserk and proceeds to inflict wounds upon herself. It just has to look like she fought back, after all. She's absolutely mad, that one. Laced with sardonic humor, "Scream 4" was ahead of its time regarding its commentary on influencer culture. For her part, Roberts dishes up an ingenious, wonderfully imbalanced performance — making this killer reveal a middle-of-the-pack offering.

You're Obsessed With Her Daughter

Jennifer Jolie (Parker Posey) and Gale Weathers (Courtney Cox) make quite the dynamic duo (more on that later). In their search to uncover the truth about Maureen Prescott's (Lynn McRee) missing years, Jennifer and Gale follow the breadcrumbs to an acting resume that details Maureen's only film credits — a trio of horror flicks produced by John Milton (Lance Henriksen). Dewey (David Arquette), Jennifer, and Gale march into John's office to demand answers. John plays coy about Maureen, who went by Rina Reynolds in her L.A. days. After a bit of back and forth, he eventually concedes that he does remember her, calling her "a nobody."

Jennifer then delivers, perhaps, her most legendary line. "Oh, come on. You have made millions off the story of her murder," she says. "You're obsessed with her and you're obsessed with her daughter." She waves her finger emphatically to great comedic effect. It's all about the drama of it all, her performance a soap opera special. Where this scene could not have worked at all, Posey pours it on thick like caramel on pancakes. Gale tells her onscreen double to calm down, "Alright, easy, Geraldo." The scene takes a much darker turn (revealing why Maureen-slash-Rina left Hollywood), and its balance with levity makes it an easy fifth-place finish here.

Did You Get That On Film?

Sidney punches or smacks Gale not once but twice in this franchise. The second time occurs in "Scream 2" when Gale ambushes Sidney on campus at Windsor College for an interview with Cotton Weary (Liev Schreiber). Sidney once accused Cotton of killing her mother, but through her book, titled "Wrongly Accused: The Maureen Prescott Murder," Gale refutes her claims and believes Cotton to have been, well, wrongly accused. Cotton has since been acquitted and hopes to set the record straight. The only way to do that is to get an apology from Sidney on camera. "I'd just like to say, I forgive and forget. Just like you, I'd like to get back on with my own life," Cotton tells her.

Sidney is clearly taken aback. You could argue Gale is just doing her job, but her approach leaves much to be desired. "Do you have any comments?" asks Gale. Sidney responds, stepping toward her, "You b****." When you think nothing will come of it, Sidney does the unexpected. In a hilarious turn, Sidney backhands Gale with all the force she can muster. Gales falls backward, and Cotton breaks her fall. "Did you get that on film?" Hallie points gleefully to Joel. "Yes, I got that on film," he mocks in return. It's such a simple exchange, but it really packs a punch (pun totally intended), and more than earns a top-tier placement.

Complex Characters

Gale and Jennifer Jolie have undeniable chemistry onscreen. When they first meet in "Scream 3," it's a hilarious, volatile mix. "Listen, I know we've never met, and I don't mind you never returning my calls. But I have to tell you after two films I feel like I am in your mind," gushes Jennifer in a matching bright lime green suit. Gale responds, "Hmm, that would explain my constant headaches." Ba-zing!

"You know, I'm sorry things didn't work out on '60 Minutes 2,' but 'Total Entertainment' is a pretty good fallback," Jennifer chides, to which Gale retorts, "Thank you. I'm sorry things didn't work out with Brad Pitt but being single … that's a pretty good fallback." Such an obvious jab at Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie — listen, her name is literally Jennifer [Aniston] and [Angelina] Jolie for crying out loud. Jennifer quickly snaps back: "Gives me more time for my work. After all Gale Weathers, you're such a complex character." Gale replies, punctuating the scene, "… and to be played by an actor with such depth and range."

In a film that's best described as camp, Jennifer and Gale's dynamic is easily the best part. They ricochet their takedowns off one another, never wavering in their commitment to one-up the other. As delightful as it is, the scene doesn't quite reach the same comedic heights as the top two on this list. But that's okay. Not everyone can be Bianca (Carrie Fisher) or Stu Macher.

Princess Leia

One of the biggest surprises in "Scream 3" is Carrie Fisher's appearance as Bianca, a receptionist manning the archive desk. Jennifer and Gale follow clues, including a photo of Maureen Prescott on the studio backlot, and approach Bianca about getting information about the former actor. But they are immediately awe-struck by her appearance. "You look just …" stutters Jennifer. Bianca picks up the sentence, saying, "… like her? I've been hearing it all my life." She then takes a jab at herself, "I was up for Princess Leia. I was this close. So, who gets it? The one who sleeps with George Lucas."

After a little bribery, Bianca guides Jennifer and Gale over to a filing cabinet, where she shares a bit of insider info. "If they're looking for Maureen Roberts, they're never gonna find her. Rina Reynolds they will," she says. She whips out a file containing the resume and headshot of Maureen-slash-Rina as proof. With a fresh new lead, Gale connects more dots to fill in the gap of the missing years Maureen took off to Hollywood before settling down and having a family.

Cameos are a dime a dozen, and Fisher's appearance in "Scream 3" feels totally random. But it works. It's almost distracting; she's what you call a total scene-stealer. Truth be told, Bianca's shining moment came this close to taking the top spot, but Stu is hard to beat.

I Think I'm Dying Here, Man!

Leave it to Stu to whine about being stabbed. In the "Scream" finale, Billy Loomis (Skeet Ulrich) and his co-conspirator stab one another to make it look like they're innocent and had to fight off Ghostface. While they're distracted, Sidney escapes and flips the script on the two murderers. "Not so fast, we're going to play a little game. It's called: Guess who just called the police," she says, pretending to be Ghostface. Billy tells Stu to go find her, but he can't. "You already cut me too deep. I think I'm dying here, man!"

Stu takes the phone from Billy and starts talking to Sidney. "What's your motive? Billy's got one. The police are on their way. What are you going to tell them?" prompts Sidney. Always ready with the quips, Stu responds with this hilarious line: "Peer pressure. I'm far too sensitive." It's a throwaway bit, yet it's not only amusing but a thematic thread in the film — the idea that peer pressure really does lead to terrible things happening. In spite of this, the scene is just plain fun and gives Stu the microphone to really outshine Billy. The bit comes right in the climax of the film, serving as a release for the audience. There's nothing funnier in that very moment. Now, if Stu came back into the franchise, we wouldn't be too mad about it.

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The post The 10 Funniest Scenes in the Scream Franchise, Ranked appeared first on /Film.