Halloween (1978)

Actor: John Michael Graham

John has been sent down to the kitchen to grab a beer for Lynda. While there, he sees the back door ajar and thinks someone’s playing a trick. Frustrated, he shuts it and checks the pantry door. Nothing. He opens the closet door and finds Michael who grabs him by the throat and pins him against the pantry door. During the struggle, Michael lifts him a mere inch or two off the floor and pins him in place a butcher’s knife.

Of all the deaths in the Halloween franchise, this is my favorite thanks to the brutal nature of the kill. The asphyxia fetishist in me loves P.J. Soles’ strangling that happens right afterward, but John’s death is my favorite overall kill. His subdued reaction into a death stare when Michael impales him is superb. I’ve occasionally fantasized about myself in the same role, and hoped for a female take on it ever since. I nearly got my wish with Halloween Ends in 2022, but the scene was ruined by a major plot point involving a new character who insisted Michael let him tag along to mentor him.

Actor: PJ Soles


PJ is filing her nails when Michael appears wearing a sheet and Bob’s glasses. He remains silent while PJ grows impatient waiting who she thinks is Bob to give her her beer. Tired of his attitude, she gets up to call Laurie. Michael approaches while she waits for Laurie to pick and is strangles her with the phone cord just as Laurie answers.

I nearly wore out my VHS copy of this flick on this scene back in the day. Damn she looked hot.

Fun fact: During an interview years later, she mentioned having made the deliberate choice to milk her death for as long as she could by continuing to gasp for air even after she was no longer in the frame. Carpenter liked it so much that he kept it.