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WMG / A Nightmare on Elm Street

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Freddy has split personalities
  • Think about it! He was born to a Nun mother and conceived from a psychotic father! A recipe for a spilt personality! And with the kind of life he led, the violent personality started taking over. And soon it had all but consumed him! But the nice personality sometimes shines through like the time in the 6th one where he was telling his daughter how much he loved her and her mother/his wife. But his violent side takes over soon! So he isn't a monster, just the personality is!
    • It might also explain why he's less menacing and more goofy as the films go on: the suppressed personality is trying to fight back.

There are no dream demons.
  • While still alive, Freddy himself suffered from the psychotic delusion that demons were telling him to kill the town's children. When the Springwood parents came to kill him, a dream-power that had been latent during his lifetime moved his spirit into the dream world when his burning body passed out from the pain and smoke inhalation. As he hadn't yet learned to manipulate dreams consciously, Freddy's psychosis took control of the dreamscape and manifested the "demons" he'd previously been hallucinating.

In the 'verse of New Nightmare, Movie!Freddy managed to get a hold of a magic ticket to cross over.
  • For one thing, Wes Craven could have been lying to Heather in order cover his own ass for allowing such a thing to happen (after all, he created the character).

ANOES2 was just a dream of an unseen character.
  • The ending of Freddy's Revenge was much like the ending of the original, trying to throw the events of the whole movie into question. However, in Dream Warriors, we find that the ending of part 1 WAS just a dream, and the events of the movie (as in, all of the deaths) happened as seen. Freddy's Revenge is never mentioned in the series again outside of clips of the credits to Freddy's Dead and the opening to Freddy vs Jason. That's because the events of Freddy's Revenge were just a multi-layered nightmare by an unknown character who may or may not be Jesse. My theory is that it was actually a kid in Westin Hills.
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  • This would explain the timeline errors the movie causes (being set 4-5 years after the first movie, but the rest of the movies coming out in the year it was made with no reference to any of the events or characters in 2, even though the events 1,3, and 4 are mentioned in each successive movie with 5 referencing all of them even if just in passing..except for part 2). SOMEONE would have heard and known about what happened in part 2. Characters in 5 know the events of the other movies even when not connected in anyway. That's because it was a Freddy nightmare that Freddy wasn't involved in personally.
  • This would explain why Freddy does so many things unique to that movie (possessing someone to come into the real world (at least 3 different times)), the bizarre and improbable dream-like state of the "real world" (such as exploding birds, a bolt of lightning striking his toaster, the heat in his house being so high that things in his room are actually melting despite the heater and gas being disconnected), or how Jesse could be alive in the same scene after Freddy shreds him apart to enter the real world. It's all just a dream from a kid whose hypnocil dosage isn't high enough, but Freddy was occupied doing other things.
    • Better yet: it's the dream of one of the two "teen suicides" mentioned as having recently occurred by characters and news reports early in Dream Warriors. Maybe even both of them, if the events up until Jesse's possession were Jesse's nightmare, and the subsequent massacre and confrontation were Lisa's.

Freddy’s burns changing were actually a sign of his power level
  • In the original film, he’s not that powerful and hasn’t really gotten any souls yet, so his burns here are more realistic. In the second film there still bad but slightly less, because he had more power. 3-4 have roughly the same state because Freddy’s at roughly the same level of strength in these two. 5 has worse burns and Freddy looks older, because he’s very weak. In 6 when he’s at his most powerful, Freddy’s burns are less pronounced and is looking very close to his human form, because he’s at his most powerful here.
    • Or the "less bad" burns that cover his face and body in the middle and last films aren't burns at all, but layer upon layer of trapped souls fused with his scars. The more victims he claims, the more these layers cover and hide his original burns; if he gets his ass kicked badly enough for some of them to escape, the outer layers disappear and he's left looking worse without them.

Nancy didn't escape Freddy in the first movie, because it wasn't her nightmare.
  • In Nightmare on Elm Street 3, she explained her mother died in her sleep. While all the Nightmares prior to the end were hers, the last one was Nancy's mother's dream during an alcohol induced sleep. It was then and there that Freddy killed Nancy's mother.

This series exists in The Sandman universe
  • Specifically, during the period in time (most of the 20th century) when The Dream of the Endless is trapped in a bubble. Without Dream in control of the Land Of Dream, Freddy is able to move, in a limited way, between the dream world and the real world.
  • A Lucid Dreamer would be able to kill people using Freddy, without any direction.
  • Think about it! If you were able to control your dreams, you would be able to control Freddy and who he kills. Is someone doing this already? Is it Wes Craven?

Freddy's Dead is Freddy's nightmare after the parents locked him out.
  • Freddy vs. Jason reveals that the parents of Springwood used Hypnocil to erase all memories of him. Freddy acts very strange during the movie because being locked away is driving him insane. That's why everything seems so cartoonish and surreal. The entire movie is his fever dream before he works out a way to come back.

Freddy's villain decay over the course of the series was an unintended side effect of absorbing the souls of teenagers into himself

The series shows the mass suicide of Springwood's teen population.
  • The entire series shows the nightmares the teenagers of Springwood are having in reaction to their guilt over their parents killing a man. Freddy did exist in the real world as a human and the Springwood Slasher, but never came back as a dream demon after his death and was truly dead the whole time. His appearance in the teens' dreams is just another manifestation of their stress and guilt, which they believe will kill them due to how vivid the dreams are. Ultimately, each teen commits suicide both to end the guilt and their resulting nightmares. This is made even worse by the fact that the adults don't notice or seem to care about their childrens' distress, and refuse to give most of them professional mental help.

Freddy becoming more hammy was actually a deliberate tactic.
  • In the first movie, Freddy’s serious and menacing, as he hunts down the kids of the parents who burned him. However, by the time of Dream Warriors, he’s growing a little bored and tired, recognizing that he’s very close to finally finishing his goals and will soon die because he’s fulfilled his contract with the Dream Demons. So in an effort to liven things up a bit, he makes his kills more creative to amuse himself, along with screwing with the kids he kills. By the 4th movie, when Kristen passes her powers to Alice, Freddy gets caught with them, allowing him to kill all of her friends. He’s ecstatic over this and has fun with his kills because he’s found a loophole and can kill as he pleases, resulting in the more wacky deaths. After Alice defeats him, but he comes back through Jacob, Freddy gets more serious because he knows he has to be cautious, resulting in more serious deaths while also keeping a few wacky ones. This comes to its head in Freddy’s Dead, where he’s killed all the kids in Springwood and can go after the whole world, so he has fun with the crazy deaths he makes up until he dies.
    • Alternately, Freddy starts spouting one-liners, and harassing his targets for multiple nights running, because by the third film he's caught on that his own power is linked to how many people fear him. If he just murders his targets outright during their first encounter, they don't have time to spread the word about the scary guy in the ugly sweater they've been dreaming about, but if he freaks his prey out for a night or two before killing them, fear of him will propagate through the town's teen population. The hokey puns and snark are a way to make sure they don't just keep quiet about they were dreaming about, as victims who would be embarrassed to admit they were scared half to death by a nightmare will still gab about a nightmare with funny bits.

Future comic-crossovers between Freddy and other characters could include...
  • Freddy vs. Beetlejuice: Beetlejuice's antics distract the people of Springwood from their fears to the degree that Freddy's source of power depletes, forcing them into a battle on the astral plane.
  • Freddy vs. Ghostbusters
  • Probably not going to happen, but I'd love to see it anyway: Freddy vs Pennywise. Two monsters who feed off of fear duke it out.

Freddy never actually absorbed souls from those he killed.
  • He only claimed this was the case to horrify his victims, and to obscure the truth that it's fear of him, felt by the living, that actually sustains and strengthens him. He used his shape-changing and dream-manipulation powers to fake the scenes of souls embedded in his torso and his own defeat in the fourth film, as well as the "soul pizza" gag, just to freak out his prey, while ensuring that the few dreamers who'd actually put up a serious fight (Nancy and Alice) never caught on that they could de-power him via the same cover-up tactics which Springwood's adults resort to prior to Freddy vs Jason.

Marge Thompson had a better idea of what was happening than she lets on. This is long and complicated.
  • There are a few things about Marge that are a little odd, and might suggest that she knew that Freddy was more than just a dream.
    • "How long has this been going on?" "Since the murders". Murders, plural. At that point two people had died, Tina...and Rod who Nancy knows didn't kill himself, but Marge should not. Unless she suspects the truth and made a Freudian Slip.
    • Marge's alcoholism. Alcohol can prevent REM sleep, and thus dreams. Her drinking ramps up as the movie goes on, too. Possibly just due to the stress of her daughter's increasing loopiness, but could she have had nightmares too, and was self-medicating?
    • She already had "Stay-Awake" pills in the medicine cabinet for Nancy to pilfer. Again, evidence that she herself has had Freddy dreams?
    • Why does she have the glove? Why would you keep a souvenir of a child murderer you helped lynch?
    • Nancy's final conversation with Marge could be interpreted as Marge admitting Freddy is real.
      Marge Thompson: I was just trying to protect you. I didn't see how much you needed to know. You face things. That's your nature. That's your gift. But sometimes you have to turn away, too.
    • "I've always had a thing for the bitches who live in this house", says Freddy to Lori in FVJ. Obviously that applies to Nancy, but who else? And while Freddy's MO is usually kids, he also targeted Lori's mother for some reason. Maybe he went after Nancy's too.
    • Come to think of it, there is something about that house. In Nightmare 2, it's been five years since the first movie, and Freddy's been quiet all that time. He becomes active again when someone finally buys 1428 Elm Street. Freddy's Dead hints that Freddy himself might once of lived there (in which case his wife, who he murdered, would be another "bitch who lives in this house").
  • Theory: Marge Thompson had some inkling that Freddy Krueger's spirit was still around, and had dreams about him. She thought she was experiencing a simple haunting of sorts, due to living in his old house (which may be the only place he can affect people when no one knows about/fears him). She told no one about these dreams, took caffeine pills to stay awake, and eventually started drinking to avoid dreams. She stole Freddy's glove (from evidence lockup? Her husband was a cop, she might have swiped his keys) at some point and hid it, perhaps convincing herself that taking it kept it from Freddy, thus protecting her and her family.
    • She was accidentally sort-of right: because Marge had convinced herself she was safe, she didn't fear Freddy as much, and may have no longer needed the pills and booze so often (though they were likely already a habit by that point). And because she told no one else about the dreams, the fear that Freddy needs never spread. It took years of subtly affecting the dreams of Marge and Nancy (Donald had moved out at some point) before Freddy had enough power to start the events of the first movie. He couldn't even have done that if he didn't always have some degree of power in that house.
    • But when Tina and Rod die, and Nancy is having dreams about Freddy, Marge panics. She doesn't really understand how Freddy operates, but she knows he's getting stronger. She starts hitting the bottle hard again. She tries first to convince Nancy that Freddy's not real, and then that he's unable to hurt her by showing her the knives. Ironically, if Nancy had believed her, it might have been true. Even the bars on the window - she says it's for security "not from what, from whom". She thinks the problem is the house, and that she's keeping Freddy in.
    • In the climax, Freddy seems to "win", but also loses. Nancy pulls him out of the dream, beats the shit out of him, the police are on their way, and he's screwed. Luckily there's one person in the house whose dreams he can escape back into: Marge. Yeah, I know, the booze. Well, nothing's guaranteed, she might have been dreaming anyway. The final scene is actually Marge's dream, which is why Nancy's fine in part 3 and just says that her mother died in her sleep; she never saw that dream. But by killing her, Freddy's kind of screwed. Nancy doesn't fear him anymore, Donald doesn't believe in him, and everyone else who knows about him is dead. It takes five years for someone else to move into the house so he can start affecting them, and then he goes on a very public rampage to rebuild his reputation, allowing him to go back to dreamstalking in Nightmare 3.
    • Although she never really understood what Freddy was and how he worked, Marge Thompson inadvertently inspired Springwood's anti-Freddy defense once they figured out what was going on and took an objective look at the incidents over the years. By avoiding dreaming, convincing herself he's not a threat, and telling no one else about him, Marge unknowingly kept Freddy contained for years. Why else would the head doctor of Westin Hills choose to live in that house, of all places? He knows that if Freddy's going to become active again, it's going to start there. Shame he couldn't foresee the involvement of Jason Voorhees.
  • Conclusion: Marge is the Hero of Another Story.
A more unified timeline of events
  • The timeline of A Nightmare on Elm Street can get pretty convoluted, and here's my personal theory that helps tie everything together. For clarity's sake, we'll also include Friday the 13th since Freddy vs. Jason exists and directly follows Freddy's Dead and Jason Goes To Hell. The remake is not canon but the 2015 fan film The Confession of Fred Kruger is.
    • The Confession of Fred Kruger serves as a prequel to the first film, followed by Dream Warriors. The Dream Master and The Dream Child follow directly from there with Part 2 taking place between Part 5 and Part 6. Part 6 leads into Freddy vs. Jason.
      • Part of why Freddy acts the way he does in Part 2 is because he knows he's losing power and is trying to find a way into the real world and out of Springwood and the possession tactics are a way for him to get out. Jesse narrowly survives the ordeal and escapes Springwood for good.
      • Part 6 takes place about fifteen years after The Dream Child and ten years after Freddy's Revenge. Jacob is John Doe, which is why he's the key for Freddy's plan. Springwood is not quite the childless dystopia it appears in the movie, but a large chunk of the town is falling into disrepair with the grownups going insane in certain locations and the children who still live there are more or less confined to certain areas and either given Hypnocil or are kept in the dark.
      • Freddy's seemingly killed at the end of Part 6 and is sent to Hell. The Dream Demons still need him since his mission scope has changed. But he needs a proxy to regain his power. This is where Jason Voorhees comes into the picture
      • The first part of Jason Goes To Hell takes place close to the same time that the last act of Freddy's Dead takes place. Given Freddy's knowledge of Jason's latent powers, he observes the final showdown with Jason from the depths of Hell and greets Jason in Hell, leading into Freddy vs. Jason
      • During the events of Freddy vs. Jason, Freddy gains new powers but they can't help him against Jason. But after that movie ends, Freddy makes good use of that power. The newfound power? He can now hop into dimensions, leading directly into Wes Craven's New Nightmare.