The Texas Chainsaw Massacre (2022) tells a ridiculous story, revolving around odd characters that come across as caricatures of better, more well-written characters. In addition, we see the unwanted return of Sally Hardesty. While she has a couple of moments worth mentioning, none of them are good. Therefore, we’re left with characters that you’ll be itching to meet the chainsaw of Leatherface. However, some are better than others, and there are a couple of good characters. So, how about we dive headfirst into the latest flick featuring our beloved leathery friend? I give you the top 5 characters from the Texas Chainsaw Massacre (2022).
Heads up, Leatherface doesn’t make the cut. If you’re wondering why, make sure to read my dissection of the massacre of Leatherface HERE.
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5. Sally Hardesty
First and foremost, let’s clear up this confusing situation with Sally, shall we? Marilyn Burns is the actress who plays Sally in The Texas Chain Saw Massacre (1974). While she survives the events of the film, in Leatherface: Texas Chainsaw Massacre III (1990), it’s said that she died in a health care facility in the year 1977. Surprisingly enough, she returns in this movie, as if she never died at all, being played by a new actress, named Olwen Fouéré. With that being said, it means that the 2022 Sally is supposed to be the same Sally from the original movie. While I can appreciate the continuity, this is a poor attempt at doing what the Halloween movies did with Jamie Lee Curtis. In this case, it doesn’t work because this isn’t the Sally from the classic.
Now that we’re on the same page, let’s take a closer look at this version of Sally Hardesty, who I consider to be the 5th best character of this movie. But why is she 5th? While I enjoy some of the badass moments that she brings to the table, with some personality to match, I just found her to be a lackluster character. She didn’t live up to the Sally from the original movie, and she’s supposed to be the same person. With a completely different attitude, personality and behavior, this Sally just didn’t pull me in and make me invest in her life like the original did. Therefore, she fails at being captivating, being a cool old lady, who has unwarranted badass moments without much going for her.
Sally Hardesty Was Made Into A Fool
The biggest problem with Sally Hardesty is that she’s dumb. She could’ve shot Leatherface on multiple occasions, but simply didn’t. Instead of shooting, and possibly killing the chainsaw-wielding bastard, she chit-chats with Leatherface for a good 2-3 minutes before the villain walks up and simply walks out of the room. Talk about making our good ol’ Sally look like a complete idiot? How can she walk around, talking about “waiting 50 years” to kill Leatherface, only to be incapable of pulling the trigger when given the opportunity? This just doesn’t add up. It makes Sally look like crazy, rather than a person looking for sweet revenge for 50 years.
Some of you might be wondering why Sally even made the list if I’m ripping into the character THIS much? The reason is simple; there are no better characters for the 5th spot. I hate to say it, but she’s just the best of the worst. So, she grabs a spot among the top 5 characters of the Texas Chainsaw Massacre (2022).
Lila, played by Elsie Fisher, encompasses many of the negative stereotypes of a modern-day young adult. Obviously this means a snarky attitude, pathetic behavior and a constant need to rebel against everything. Oh, and of course, she’s never happy. Therefore, you’ll either love her and see yourself in her, or you’ll hate her because she’s very annoying. While I fall somewhere in the middle, I found her to be a case of a failed experiment. I mean that there was potential here to do something noteworthy, as Lila was a victim of a school shooting. Sadly, her backstory is never explored, and thus, Lila’s full potential is never reached.
Elsie Fisher does a good job playing Lila, but the writers dropped the ball, as the script was very questionable. Considering that she’s the Final Girl, you’d expect the story to revolve around her, right? That’s not the case. While the movie starts and ends with her, it’s her sister Melody that comes across as the lead character. I mean, the plot revolves around Melody and Dante’s plan for the abandoned town of Harlow, with them being involved in the majority of big moments in the second act. Therefore, my opinion is that Lila wasn’t set up for success. If anything, she was set to fail thanks to the poor character writing.
Lila Turns Things Around In the Last Act of the Movie
The reason she secures the 4th spot is because of the character’s quality part in the ending of the movie, where Lila grows tenfold. In turn, the annoying traits that made her easy to dislike were washed away by the blood of others, supplied to her by Leatherface. That was just a fancy way of saying that in the end, Lila became rather likeable. She’s involved in really good moments that made sense for her character arc. While the writers waited too long to pull the trigger in making her interesting, they did in the last 15 minutes of the movie, resulting in an unsurprisingly positive outcome.
3. Virginia “Ginny” McCumber
Yes. I stand behind this decision to the fullest. I believe that the old lady, who’s in the movie for about 5-6 minutes, is the 3rd best character in the Texas Chainsaw Massacre. Believability and quality acting goes a long way in making a good character, especially in a slasher flick. If not for Alice Krige, perhaps this character wouldn’t even have made the list? After all, it’s not like Ginny is well-written or anything. It’s a case of the actress pulling the weight in making the character intriguing. Alice Krige gives the old lady a sense of mystery, while still keeping her realistic in the context of the movie. She manages to make me feel something for Ginny, and that’s more than I can say for most other characters in this movie.
Wait a minute! Give me a chance to explain myself before you get upset, alright? No. This isn’t a joke. Yes, I stand behind this decision. 10 toes down. Why is that the case, you might ask? It’s because Richter comes across like a real human being, with a distinct personality and a fitting no BS attitude to match. He’s desperately needed in a movie where the majority of characters are annoying and irritating – or both. Thus, I found Richter to be a breath of fresh air, or maybe I should say that he’s a breath of “old” air? After all, he’s similar to old Leatherface characters that were actually worth a damn.
When it comes to Richter, he’s a very interesting fit, isn’t he? On one hand, he feels completely out of place in a movie that tries to be too “hip” for its own good. On the other hand, he feels like a fresh apple in a spoiled bunch, in a movie filled with cheesy characters, poorly written dialogue and a ridiculous storyline. In all honesty, I didn’t expect Richter to be this good, but he’s absolutely worthy of a high ranking. It’s not just about fitting the movie physically, and having a realistic and distinct behavior, but also the way the character makes the story better. If only we would’ve seen more of him. Nevertheless, he’s the second best character on my list of the top 5 characters of Texas Chainsaw Massacre (2022).
The first 25 minutes; she’s insufferable. The last 55 minutes; she’s the best character of Texas Chainsaw Massacre (2022). She’s as much of a Final Girl as her sister Lila, but has many more redeeming qualities. While she’s not dealing with a past trauma like Lila, Melody is actively partaking in the storyline revolving around Leatherface. In-fact, she and Dante are the reason Ginny died, and thus, her behavior and change in mentality is legitimate. It actually feels like something tragic has transpired, and she acts very human in response, with genuine care and worry for the events. In turn, she’s not just a character that’s along for the ride like her sister. Melody is responsible for the start of the massacre, and is a key figure in the story.
I’m going to be 100% transparent here, and say that I didn’t like Melody in the beginning of the film. It wasn’t just about her ridiculous idea for Harlow and her poor behavior towards Ginny, but her snarky attitude. While it was hard to understand that creative decision at that point in time, once Ginny passed away, it all made perfect sense. It was all a ploy to make us detest her before we like her. It worked, and one of the main reasons I was able to grown fond of Melody was thanks to Sarah Yarkin. She honestly nailed the role of Melody. I can’t wait to see what she does next.
Now it’s time to wrap this up, folks! But before I go let me just say that I dislike the way the movie ends, but I do like Melody. So let’s crown her, shall we? Melody takes the #1 spot on my list of the Top 5 Texas Chainsaw Massacre (2022) characters.