Some synth goes great with a serial killing doll, right?
Pop music might not be the first thing that comes to mind when you think of
horror movies. It really might not be the first thing that comes to mind when you think of the Child’s Play/Chucky franchise of horror movies, which follows a murderous toy doll with the spirit of a serial killer named Charles Lee Ray trapped inside of him. But what if I told you that that uber-successful horror franchise’s first foray into TV, the new Chucky series, featured a soundtrack that went heavy on pop and indie pop…and it totally worked?
Part of the reason it works so well (we’re talking songs by artists like the inescapable Billie Eilish and the underrated pop star Kim Petras) is that for the first time in the 33-year-old franchise, Chucky follows a group of mid-teenagers. These kids are moody, looking for their place in the world, and live, unquestionably, in 2021; the music stylings of Billie Eilish and others others of her ilk just feels right in this setting.
Which is not to say there’s a whole lot of updating to Chucky the maniacal serial-killing doll himself; he’s still voiced, as always, by actor Brad Dourif, still wise-cracking any chance he can get, and still a danger to be in the same room as quite literally any human being.
The Chucky show is great in ways that are almost surprising—it taps into both lanes of what the franchise has always done so well: horror, with genuinely jarring kills in each episode, and humor, with Chucky a character that really cracks you up himself and brings out the best in other characters as well. This is a story with tension, and showrunner Don Mancini —who created Child’s Play back in 1988 and has written every movie since, outside of the 2019 reboot—clearly knows how important pop music is to the youth of today.
Here’s every song from Chucky Season 1.
Evan is the culture editor for Men’s Health, with bylines in The New York Times, MTV News, Brooklyn Magazine, and VICE. He loves weird movies, watches too much TV, and listens to music more often than he doesn’t.
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