Scream 1×09 ‘The Dance’: Who stole the Sheriff?


Last week’s episode ended with a suspect being arrested and the police thinking that they caught the killer. Well we viewers know a lot better than that. It’s clear that that arrest is just another red herring, but with the season ending next week, the answers will be revealed soon enough. Or, you know, the writers could be jerks and wait till next season. There’s that too.

Since this is the second to last episode of the season, it’s no surprise that it left off right at a super intense part. Also no surprise that while the show made it look like it answered some questions, it really just created more possibilities of who the killers are. And since there is a season two, who even knows what the writers are going to reveal to us in the next episode and what they will save for the next season.

The episode starts with a flashback showing that someone took the Brandon James’ mask from Municipal records a year ago. This heavily suggests that whoever took that mask is the mastermind behind everything. This still means that there can be multiple killers, especially since it was stated in the first half of the season that Brandon James had multiple masks made after his surgeries. But whoever the mastermind is, they are the one who has been calling Emma and has orchestrated this whole thing.



Even with Seth Branson in police custody, the writers are still determined to make everyone a suspect. He and Emma do get to face off which is an interesting little scene. He seems to have no idea what she’s talking about throughout the conversation until his last statement in response to Emma saying “You said that this ends with me. Is it over?”Branson replies: “I have no idea what you’re talking about. But considering that I’m stuck in here, I guess you’ll find out soon enough.” His cool and collected tone carries a whiff of suspicion. While it is very unlikely that Branson is the killer, it’s very possible that he’s still involved.

Now let me spend the rest of this review debunking everything that the show claimed to clear up. As just mentioned, Branson is probably not the killer (or at least not the mastermind). That was made clear by the fact that the main killer kidnaps the Sheriff in the middle of the episode when Branson is in police custody. But Branson does appear to have escaped from his cell, leaving the bloody bodies of cops behind. While this may make people think that he is capable of murder, someone could have killed those cops and let Branson go (obviously we don’t know why but that’ll be cleared up in the next episode).

And then there’s the possibility that Kieran is the son of Brandon James. While that would be a sick and clever twist to the show, there’s still a chance that that isn’t true. Yes, I’ve been suspicious of Kieran all along and he also could be involved in some way. But considering that Emma finds this out through Piper (who I’m even more suspicious of), I would not be surprised if Piper lied to her. Especially since Emma has come to trust Piper so quickly, she would be the perfect character to betray Emma.



It comes off as a little cheap that the show just randomly decided to bring Brandon James’ mother so late into the season. Emma talks to her with Piper there, and she makes it seem that Branson is in fact Brandon James’ son. I think it’s safe to say that Branson isn’t James’ son (I really hope I don’t have to eat my words by the end of next week’s episode). It’s too obvious, a red herring that the writers couldn’t resist. There’s a good chance that the writers will flip the tables and instead of Brandon James having a son, he had a daughter. And the most likely person to be his daughter is Piper Shaw. Again, this is mere speculation, but it is based on clues that the show has planted. Piper has yet to be truly suspected by anyone, so there’s hope that she’s majorly involved in the murders somehow.

In terms of the general events, it’s a surprise that a lot of the Halloween dance took place in this episode. It seemed logical for it to be the main event of the finale. But alas, it looks like the finale will stay true to its high school characters and end with a big drunken party that could possibly end in a giant bloodbath. It also would have been a nice touch if the killer called Emma in the last 10 seconds of this episode since we haven’t heard his pretty voice in a while. Obviously the next episode is going to carry on right from where this one ended, so hopefully there will be a bit more of the dance to see.

With the season being up and down so far, the finale will certainly determine just how good Scream actually is. It definitely has its strong points; how the writers have been able to keep everyone a suspect, referring to other horror movies and TV shows (which is what the original Scream movie did), and having interesting characters (Noah, Audrey), especially those that have had great character development throughout the season (Brooke, Jake). But with the highs come the lows, which are mainly just inconsistencies (the self-awareness that kind of disappeared, the thing with Brooke’s dad that amounted to nothing). But in all fairness, the show has done well enough to keep viewers attention, and I’m sure they’ll stick around to find out who the killer is and who will be killed next.

Sarah Lord

is a college student in New York City. Her extreme knowledge of British comedians and TV shows almost surpasses her general love for film. When she’s not sitting in her apartment/nerd cave reviewing movies and TV shows, she sometimes makes time for long walks in the moonlight. Check her out on YouTube, Twitter and Tumblr as TheSplord.

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