Hey Everyone! Thanks for coming back for Part Two of my 14 Favorite Horror Couples countdown. With Valentine’s Day just a day away now, I thought I’d celebrate the occasion the best way I know how- by paying homage to some of my very favorite lovers I’ve enjoyed in the horror genre throughout the years.
Now, let’s dim the lights, queue up the Barry White, relax and get ready to get romantic with the final seven of my Favorite Horror Couples ever! And if you happened to miss part one earlier this week, you can catch up here first.
Once again, in no particular order…
Buffy & Angel- Buffy the Vampire Slayer/Angel
Forget Dawson and Joey- my favorite star-crossed lovers on The WB in the late 90’s were Buffy (Sarah Michelle Gellar) and Angel (David Boreanaz). I think I may have gone through about four boxes of Kleenex alone by the time season two of Buffy the Vampire Slayer wrapped up in the spring of 1998 and it’s safe to say that no other lovers on television have suffered quite like Buffy and Angel did, thereby proving theirs was a love that would remain timeless, albeit slightly doomed.
But let’s be honest, a vampire slayer and a bloodsucker in a normal and healthy relationship? That’s a recipe for disaster right there, especially when one of them is still in high school, but screw logic- millions of Buffy fans just wanted to see their favorite heroine and her vampiric protector/boyfriend get their happy ending. And just when everything seemed perfect for Buffy and Angel, we see the repercussions of their love after Angel experiences a moment of true happiness in the episode “Surprise” where he’s transformed back into his soulless former self, Angelus.
And man, that’s when Buffy got really rough on us fans- Angelus kills off several beloved characters, cruelly torments his former girlfriend and her friends relentlessly and then in season’s two finale, Buffy is forced to kill Angel as the only way to save the world from an invading demonic force he unleashed while still the evil Angelus which is just the biggest bummer of all for Ms. Summers. Of course, that wasn’t the end of the Buffy and Angel saga (that would come in the 1999 cross-over episodes “I Will Remember You” and “Pangs” with the former being a sob-fest and a half in itself) but ultimately, the two just could never make it work, which was just as heartbreaking for all of us fans.
Billy Peltzer & Kate Beringer- Gremlins & Gremlins 2: The New Batch
How sweet were Billy (Zach Galligan) and Kate (Phoebe Cates) in both Gremlins films? Just beyond adorable if you ask me. These two had to battle against hordes of tiny green monsters on two different occasions (and an insistent seductress named Marla in Gremlins 2: The New Batch) and managed to stick it out through it all together, with their good-natured dispositions and idealistic love firmly intact.
Very rarely do the good guys win (twice) in the horror genre, but both Billy and Kate were a couple I always adored and rooted for just because they were the kind of people you want to see make it through their ordeal. Characters like that in this genre are few and far between, especially these days, and both Galligan and Cates’ likable and engaging performances, as well as Dante’s ability to stay true to his iconic characters, are just some of the reasons I will always be a lifelong fan of Billy and Kate and both Gremlins films.
Laurie Strode & Jimmy- Halloween II
After having pretty much the worst Halloween ever, things started looking up for poor Laurie Strode (Jamie Lee Curtis) in Halloween II by way of the affections of a puppy dog-eyed paramedic named Jimmy (Lance Guest) who happens to be working the night she’s attacked by Michael Myers. Jimmy takes an instant interest in Laurie (who has no idea that around the very same time she’s meeting Jimmy that her current crush Ben Tramer is being torched by speeding cop car after being mistaken for Myers- talk about bad luck) and promises to keep watch on her throughout the night.
Jimmy, a man of his word, does so but at a price- of course Myers shows up at Haddonfield Memorial Hospital to finish the job on Laurie, forcing Jimmy to step up and become a man of action. And while they may not have necessarily left Halloween II as an official couple, I always thought that maybe things worked out for Laurie and Jimmy, even if for only briefly, due to Halloween II’s alternative ending which finds them both together in the ambulance making it to safety.
David Kessler & Alex Price- An American Werewolf in London
Fulfilling every man’s fantasy of a hot nurse who has an extra-special bedside manner was the awesome Jenny Agutter as Alex Price in John Landis’ classic horror comedy An American Werewolf in London. After a young American, named David Kessler (David Naughton), and his friend Jack (Griffin Dunne) are viciously attacked while roaming the moors during their backpacking trip through England, he finds himself in the care of Alex who promises to keep an eye on him as he’s forced to remain in London while law enforcement investigated his attack.
Of course, strange things begin happening to David after his attack and Alex, as smart and sensitive as she is stunning, sticks it through with him until the very bitter (and heartbreaking) end. It’s that final look between them- even with David as a monster- that demonstrates what they shared, even briefly, was so real between them.
Sidney Prescott & Derek- Scream 2
To say that Sidney Prescott (Neve Campbell) was unlucky in the romance department would be a huge understatement. In Scream, not only did her boyfriend Billy (Skeet Ulrich) try to kill her and all of her friends but he also co-masterminded Sidney’s mother’s murder a year prior. And unfortunately for poor Sid, her trust issues rear their ugly head in Scream 2 when, after a new killing spree breaks out at her college, she begins to doubt the intentions of her new boyfriend, Derek (Jerry O’Connell), who seems to be way too perfect to be true.
I know Derek was one of the proposed killers before director Wes Craven and writer Kevin Williamson ultimately decided on going in a different direction and for that, I’m glad because there was a sweetness to their relationship that made for a nice balance in the sequel and also allowed the character of Sidney to open up more.
Plus who can forget Derek serenading Sidney with a boisterous performance of “I Think I Love You” in the cafeteria while presenting her with his fraternity letters? It’s probably one of the few moments of happiness for Campbell’s character and still one of the most memorable scenes from the entire series. I had always wished things didn’t work out so tragically for Sidney and Derek in Scream 2 but at least us fans will always have the cafeteria scene to get us through.
Kit & Rob- April Fool’s Day
This entry on my countdown is probably one of the more obscure couples I’ve paid homage to, but that doesn’t mean they don’t earn their spot- Kit (Amy Steel) and Rob (Ken Olandt) from Fred Walton’s 1986 cult classic April Fool’s Day. For the uninitiated, this grossly underrated horror comedy follows a group of college kids on spring break that want to a break from the stresses of finals and their looming adulthood, only to find themselves stalked by a murderer who finds clever ways to eliminate them one by one.
Soon, only Kit and Rob are left to solve the mystery of April Fool’s Day and that’s when their true colors as a couple really shine through. Both stick together and keep their wits until the film’s very final moments (which I won’t ruin in case you haven’t seen it) and when things are at their darkest, Kit and Rob’s devotion to each other is unwavering. Steel, an actress who could have chemistry with a paper bag- she’s that awesome, does a great job of bringing out the emotional side of the mostly stoic Olandt who plays Rob with a nice-guy nobility that never falters even when he thinks he’s about to meet his demise. As he screams to Kit that he loves her, it’s a telling moment for these two crazy kids that if they could make it through April Fool’s Day, they could make it through anything.
Mickey & Mallory Knox- Natural Born Killers
Probably the most f***ed up couple on this countdown, I would absolutely be remiss if I didn’t mention Mickey (Woody Harrelson) and Mallory Knox (Juliette Lewis) here even if Natural Born Killers isn’t straight-up horror fare. Oliver Stone may have been creating a deeply disturbing and darkly satirical deconstruction of sensationalist media, but he also crafted one of the greatest- and most insane- love stories of modern cinema brought to life with pitch-perfect performances by both Harrelson and Lewis.
While they may not necessarily be a ‘typical’ couple, Mickey and Mallory’s love and devotion for each other was unquestionable, making Natural Born Killers something of a wacked-out romance once you peeled all its layers away. When Mallory says to Mickey, “I’ve loved you since the day we met,” you know she means it.