Who is the Killer in Scream Season 1

20 Years ago Brandon James, a disfigured high school boy caused a murder massacre. Now a new Lakewood Slasher hiding behind Brandon’s surgical mask is on a killing spree that is aimed at Emma Duval. Who is this masked and cloaked Lakewood Slasher?

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The Setting

Brandon James lived in Lakewood. 20 Years ago he caused a massacre, killing 5 of his high school peers. He was shot at the dock at Wren Lake. He fell into the lake, but his body was never found. Now someone is using his mask to kill again. He is targeting Emma Duval’s friends and threatens her with phone calls. But what is his connection with the massacre 20 years ago and with Emma?

Read the full review of Scream season 1, here.

The Characters

Emma Duval is a 16 year-old high school girl who lives with her mother Maggie in Lakewood. Her father Kevin left them 8 years ago. She attends the George Washington High School with her friends Brooke Maddox, Riley Marra, Jake Fitzgerald, Nina Patterson, Tyler O’Neil and her boyfriend Will Belmont. Mr Seth Branson is their English teacher.

When Nina gets brutally murdered and Tyler goes missing, Emma reconnects with her old best friend Audrey Jensen and her friend Noah Foster. New boy is Kieran, Sheriff Clark Hudson’s son who has come to live with him after his mother and stepdad died in a car accident, 6 weeks ago. Reporter Piper Shaw from the podcast Autopsy of a Crime also comes to Lakewood to report the deaths and to investigate the story. 

Let the killings begin:

  • Death no.1: Tyler O’Neil is decapitated at the pool at Nina’s house, but both his head and body went missing.
  • Death no.2: Nina Patterson is shortly after stabbed to death and her body is thrown into the pool. 
  • Death no.3: Rachel Murray, Audrey’s girlfriend is hung from the balcony, but staged hanging from the ceiling fan of her room to make it look like a suicide. 
  • Death no.4: Riley Marra is stabbed to death at the police station and fled to the roof and called Noah who watched his almost girlfriend die. 
  • Death no.5 : Tied up to a chair, Will is sawn in half by a trencher, that is activated by a tripwire tied to a lever, accidentally activated by Emma who wanted to save him. 
  • Death no.6: A cop Clifton Roberts is killed so that Seth Branson could escape jail. His death is staged. 
  • Death no.7: Clark Hudson is tied to a tree and his ropes hold his guts in place. When Maggie unties him, his guts fall out. 
  • Death no.8: Grayson, some random high school boy is stabbed at a party Brooke is throwing. 

The Suspects

We first find out that Nina and Tyler were involved in blackmailing someone. That someone turned out to be Quinn Maddox, Brooke’s father. But Jake and Will also were involved and wanted to keep their business going. It seems logical that Quinn could have killed them to stop the blackmailing. But that doesn’t explain Riley’s death, unless she knew about it too somehow.

But she did was Mr Branson’s assistant just like Tyler was and had access to his computer, a computer with malware, that kept an eye on all the victims and with cloned phones and a network it could sent out compromising videos. Also, Noah and Audrey find out that Branson isn’t who he says he is. His real name is Seth Palmer and he changed his name when he moved after he had quit his old teaching job after an affair with a student. That student was later found dead. And Branson… Brandon’s son…

But that’s not all. Jake almost dies twice, but escapes death. He’s conveniently never around when a murder takes place or when the others are attacked. But this goes for Kieran too. 

What to make of Emma’s absent father Kevin? He left them 8 years ago, but with a reason yet unknown to Emma. He was the only survivor of Brandon James’ massacre, but maybe now he’s out for revenge. And he also suddenly shows up.

Eventually when Emma finds out that her mother, who was sixteen at the time of the massacre, then was called Daisy. Daisy just had a fight with her boyfriend Kevin who cheated on her and Brandon took her home. They were friends for a long time and he comforted her and she had sex with Brandon. Daisy became pregnant, but gave up the baby, or was forced to do so. Now it makes more sense why the killer is targeting Emma.

Who could this baby be? Piper and Emma go visit Cassie James, Brandon’s mother who tells them that Brandon’s son came to visit her recently. She can’t quite remember his name, Keith or something, whereas Emma asks if it could have been Seth. Cassie says that this was indeed his name. So is Seth, Emma’s half-brother? Later when Piper had gone back to Cassie, as she tells Emma, she showed her pictures, whereas Cassie pointed out Kieran as the boy who came to see her and who asked questions about his father. So is Kieran whom Emma slept with, her half-brother? 

The Killer unmasked

Why is everybody so quickly to assume that the killer is a man? Maggie never said she had a son, she said she had a baby. Audrey even proves to Emma that a voice modulator can change any voice. Maybe Emma has a half-sister instead of a half-brother…

And that is indeed the case. It was never a man, but a woman who came back to torture Emma. In the final episode it is revealed that Piper Shaw was Maggie’s and Brandon’s child. She grew up in an orphanage and swore revenge on her mother for what they did to her father. His body was never found, but it also never becomes clear if he really was the killer that night. Maggie never stopped believing in his innocence but did nothing to exonerate him or to help him. To make matters worse, she gave up her baby or was made to do so. Piper hates Emma for having it all, while she has nothing. And she hates her mother who didn’t want anything to do with her. So she wanted Emma and Maggie to suffer by killing all her friends. 

She toyed with Emma making her believe she had any control in who died and who lived. Even Will’s and Clark’s deaths were finalized by Emma and Maggie, although their fates were already sealed. Making Emma and Maggie feel even more guilty. She framed Branson and wanted to blame him for the deaths of Emma and Maggie and the others. 

But at the dock at Wren Lake it all ends. Emma and Piper, who has revealed herself to them, fight and just when Piper is about to reveal a shocking secret and kill her, Audrey shows up in time to kill her. She shoots her and Piper falls into the lake. She rises out of the water and is shot by Emma. Just like her father, she died at the lake and her body was never found.

But Piper was attacked too

But what about Cassie? She wasn’t in the conspiracy was she? She maybe was old and a bit demented, and Emma put the name practically in her mouth, but there’s another explanation. That relates to the time when Will and Piper were attacked by the Lakewood Slasher, which exonerated them both. Or did it? 

Piper has an accomplice. Someone who visited Cassie, who sometimes called or texted Emma and her friends, who attacked Piper, to make it seem she was a victim too. So who could that be? It still could be Seth or Kieran, who visited Cassie. 

But even more shocking is that in the last scenes we see Audrey burning letters she wrote to Piper. So she knew her. She also could have posed as a guy to Cassie. And we all know she hated Nina. Maybe things got out of hand. Her DNA was found at the inside of a Brandon James mask. It could have been planted, but it could also be a clue. 

Or it could be someone we haven’t seen yet. Someone who stayed out of sight completely and might show himself or herself in the next season to take revenge on Piper’s death or to finish what she started. 

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