The Saw movies built the franchise on one thing, creative violence. The movies see the lead killer character creating intricate traps that require victims to do terrible things that end up subjecting themselves or others to horrific violence. Each movie tried to top the last when it came to showing audiences things they probably didn't really want to see. And now, the newest Saw movie has upped the ante again. Spiral: From the Book of Saw is still a week away, but I can't imagine the film will include anything as terrible as a muscle bound mostly naked Billy the Puppet.
Even if you don't actually know the Saw movies well you're probably familiar with the image. Billy the Puppet became the avatar of Jigsaw, the killer throughout the Saw franchise. He frequently used the puppet to speak with his victims, thus allowing him to keep his own anonymity. He's a creepy little dummy that usually wears a little suit, but in an image posted to the official Spiral Twitter account, he's wearing almost nothing at all.
If you thought Billy the Puppet was creepy before, I feel like this art created by 3D artist Jason Ebayer, is that much worse. This is not something anybody ever asked to see. While many horror movies mash up their violence with sex, the Saw movies were never like that. There's nothing sexy about this franchise and as impressive a creation as this is, it just feels even more terrifying than the actual movies.
If this is the version of Billy the Puppet that we're going to see in Spiral: From the Book of Saw, the audience would no doubt be shocked. Of course, that assumes that Billy will actually make an appearance in the movie and we're just not sure about that yet. While we know that Spiral is connected in some way to the larger Saw franchise, it's unclear exactly how. Is Spiral a sequel to the previous films? Will knowledge of those movies be needed to really understand what is happening in the new one? Or is this something altogether new, with only tangential connections to the once annual franchise?
We can certainly be sure that the movie will contain some creative ways to make people dead. We've seen enough from the trailers to know that aspect of the Saw films will remain intact.
It will be interesting to see just how popular the Saw franchise still is, or how the starpower of Chris Rock and Samuel L. Jackson might help boost it. Spiral: From the Book of Saw will open in theaters only, with no day-and-date release on VOD or streaming services as so many other recent films have done. You not only have to be a Saw fan, or a horror fan in general, but also be interested enough to go hit the theater. Spiral: From the Book of Saw hits theaters next Friday.