When it comes to horror and all the subgenres within it, unlikely situations are ironically expected to occur. Most of the time we’re given characters that are blatantly different for the sake of representing opposites: good and bad, funny and serious, logical and insane. Audiences don’t anticipate these representations to get along, let alone band together to make it to the end. When it comes to the following list of films, no matter how crazy the situation these characters find themselves in, the biggest shock is who winds up teaming up with who.
There really is nothing sweeter than two unlikely characters finding each other in the face of menace and evil. Sometimes those characters are the faces of menace and evil, but that still counts. From catfights and bromances to villainous allies, nothing says ‘I love you’ quite like ‘I hate you’ first. Here’s the Top 10 Unlikely Horror Duos:
10. Ellen Ripley and Jones the Cat in Alien
In space no one can hear you scream, except the feral starship cat. After a terrifying unknown alien being destroys all of her fellow crew members, Ripley finds solace in the Ginger Tom cat, Jones. She’s not much of a cat person at first, but when you’re left alone in space with a big, slimy, lethal monster of an alien and the harmless feline, you’re gonna choose the cat to keep you company.
9. Charley Brewster and Peter Vincent in Fright Night
An adolescent boy-who-cried-wolf and a washed-up, geriatric late night star don’t exactly scream ‘power couple’, however Charley and Peter are able to bond over their knowledge of one thing: the realm of horror. The two reluctantly pair up to stop the evil vampire, Jerry, who’s just moved into Charley’s quaint suburban neighborhood. They’re both misunderstood, underestimated men on opposite sides of the age spectrum, but in the end Vincent’s wisdom, Charley’s bravery, and their combined courage puts Jerry to sleep for good
8. Madeline Ashton and Helen Sharp in Death Becomes Her
It’s no secret that women tend to view one another as enemies, especially when it comes to a man. Madeline and Helen are two women obsessed with two things: eternal beauty and Ernest. These leading ladies will stop at nothing to declare themselves as the only woman in Ernest’s life, even if that literally means physically destroying one another in the process. However, when they realize who the real enemy is (hint, it’s always the adulterer) and join beautiful, flawless girl power forces they are able to serve up a lethal dose of justice. Madeline and Helen’s relationship proves that two heads are better than one and women can coexist is peaceful harmony happily ever after… forever.
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7. Sidney Prescott and Gale Weathers in Scream
No one really likes exploitative, nosy, meddlesome news reporters, especially Sidney. However, we see her relationship with the woman broadcasting her mother’s dirty laundry, Gale Weathers, Top Story and author of the Woodsboro Murders, go from punches (sorry, Gale, people don’t forget) to final female survivor stardom. The unlikely duo are able to team up for four installments of the Scream franchise, each time bringing down the man or woman behind Ghost Face respectively.
6. Arnie Cunningham and Christine in Christine
He was a boy. She was a car. If Stephen King’s Christine taught us anything it’s that love is love. Arnie is the quintessential nerd, totally unfit to be riding around in the red hot 1958 Plymouth Fury he’s lovingly named Christine. However, through a lot of tantrums and a Grease-worthy new look, Arnie overcomes the loser archetype and turns into a full-on villain. A perfect fit for the sleek, devilish ride. No shitter could ever understand the bond between a man and his metal, even if it drives away all of his loved ones or drives over them (oh, the puns). Arnie + Christine 4 Ever.
5. Dr. Hannibal Lecter and Agent Clarice Starling in The Silence of the Lambs
Classic love story: Good girl meets bad boy. I know the relationship between the intelligent, yet sadistic cannibal Dr. Lecter and earnest rookie FBI agent Clarice Starling isn’t exactly love, but there is something there between them and the plexiglass. Starling must find it in herself to resist Lecter’s invasive psychotherapy all the while coaxing information out of him to catch another murderer at large. A man like him is the epitome of evil to her in the beginning, but over time, and a lot of indirect therapy sessions, Starling begins to soften to the doctor’s odd charm. Lecter begins to trust the young agent, feeding her more and more information on how to catch the real (other) bad guy. Able agent and educated psychopath: a force to be reckoned with.
4. Freddy Krueger and Jason Voorhees in Freddy Vs. Jason
Bad guys need love too! What better horror frenemy-slash-bromance (another pun) example could there be? Freddy haunts his victims in their sleep, Jason stalks them while they’re awake. Teenagers of Elm Street and Camp Crystal Lake beware! Here things get kind of messy what with dimensional lines being crossed and a penalty flag thrown here and there. Friendly competition eventually turns into a testosterone-fueled battle royale. What starts out as a carnage war between the two heavyweight champs of horror turns into a fleeting on-screen bromance. Freddy and Jason figure out that teamwork will ultimately take care of those pesky teenagers once and for all, but then it’s back to their respective corners again until the referee calls them back to the field.
3. Thomasin and Black Phillip in The Witch
The strong-willed, final girl will surely triumph over Satan and his imps by the end of this new-age, witchy tale, right? Wrong. Thomasin and her family are cast out to live in the New England woods where witches and their familiars run amok. Mounting paranoia and evil eventually turn the family inside out leaving Thomasin with the most prominent familiar of all: an ebony billy goat appropriately named Black Phillip aka Satan incarnate. The animal and its evil eye torment Thomasin up through the end of the film. However, like any bad influence, Black Phillip is able to completely isolate Thomasin and coax her inner-witch to prevail. She, in turn, is unable to turn down the devil’s temptation and gives in. It winds up being a match made in Heaven… well, in this case it’s a match made in Hell.
2. Lydia Deetz and Adam and Barbara Maitland in Beetlejuice
A typical ghost story usually involves the dead antagonizing the living and that does happen in this story, but not in the way you think. Simple couple Adam and Barbara Maitland are new members the afterlife and find themselves at odds with the eccentric nouveau riche family that has moved into their house. Despite their best efforts and befriending the family’s strange daughter, Lydia, Adam and Barbara recruit help from a wild, zany, sinister spirit (I won’t state his name here). When things get out of hand (with the spirit whose name I won’t state) and the family is put in jeopardy, the dead protect the living girl they have grown fond of and ultimately bring down the baddest of baddies (again, it’s best not to state his name).
1. Tallahassee and Columbus in Zombieland
Tallahassee is edgy, quick, rough, and brave. Columbus is quiet, reserved, cautious, and a “bit of a bitch” as Tallahassee would say. Both are not exactly social, easy-to-get-along-with types of people. When a zombie virus brings about the end of civilization, these two guys are left Twinky-less and dependent on one another for survival. All bets are unexpectedly off, especially when they meet the clever and independent Wichita and Little Rock. Of course the (anything but) damsels find themselves in zombified distress calling on the two opposites for help. Brains and brawn combine to rescue the girls and show that bromance is the real deal. Together they learn that isolation from the world is meaningless whether it’s populated with people or the undead.
The horror genre can teach us all a lot of things, but one of it’s more light-hearted themes is that in the end together is always better, no matter how unlikely the duo.