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Spiral: Sequel or spin-off to Saw Legacy

Spiraling Down the Rabbit Hole {Image via Lionsgate}
Spiraling Down the Rabbit Hole {Image via Lionsgate}
ANALYST

With the latest installment to the Saw story releasing today, May 14th, long-time fans are curious as to whether Spiral: From the Book of Saw is a sequel to John Kramer's legacy or simply a copy cat?

Spiral: Sequel or Spin-Off to Saw Legacy

In 2004, a mark was left upon the world of horror and thrillers as John Kramer introduced audiences to his twisted teaching methods that required people who did wrong by him and by society to look on the inside... Sometimes, literally.

Directed by James Wan and featuring Cary Elwes, the original Saw film added depth to gore that went beyond typical horror tropes. Although the unique twist in the films was that individuals were being held accountable for the wrong they had done to Kramer and others, the more elaborate element of the films was the ability to transfer the identity of the Jigsaw Killer from one individual to the next.

Though John Kramer is the first Jigsaw Killer seen, audiences learn from later films that Amanda Young and Dr. Lawrence Gordon had also had a turn behind the dreaded pig mask.

Here, piggy, pig, pig. {Image via Lionsgate, Saw 2004}
Here, piggy, pig, pig. {Image via Lionsgate, Saw 2004}

With the series being known for its ability to surprise viewers by those who currently carry Kramer's legacy, the release of Spiral catches audiences not only by surprise, as it was not majorly advertised, but also by surprise in the sense of wondering who the killer could possibly be now.

Long-time Jigsaw fanatics also recognized that the eighth Saw film that was released in 2017, titled "Jigsaw," took place chronologically nearly a decade before the original Saw film in 2004. Thus, leaving fans of the franchise too also wondering where the new film, "Spiral," falls within the timeline.

**Disclaimer: Minor film details will be discussed at this point. Readers looking to avoid any sort of spoilers, or more mature content, should stop reading now.**

Lionsgate and Twisted Pictures' feature film, titled "Spiral: From the Book of Saw," in theaters as early as last night though officially airing today, May 14th, is not a direct sequel to Jigsaw nor any previous Saw film.

Though the infamous Jigsaw killer is recognized as the inspiration behind the murders as a pig mask and puppet are seen on-screen, this storyline stands independent from previously mentioned characters.

The only similarities and connections between Spiral and the other eight Saw films are the methods of the murders and the attempt at throwing the audience off the trail of the killer. It also has the film's director, Darren Lynn Bousman, attempting to re-create the iconic struggle shot as victims attempt to escape their puzzling traps any other way than the way they have been instructed to do so.

Audiences of the film will feel both a bit of nostalgia and unfamiliarity in watching Spiral: From the Book of Saw. This is due in part to the predictable plot line and usage of moral-correcting traps, as well as the victims' inability to truly escape their traps.

Spiral is clearly working towards expanding the Saw cinematic storyline in its creation of a Jigsaw Killer copy cat, which provides it with the label of "Spin-Off" instead of "Sequel". Nonetheless, the experience of watching the film in theaters will be as exciting and entertaining as ever.

Edited by Nikhil Vinod
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