In a fantastic conclusion to the Fear Street trilogy, Fear Street Part 3: 1666 gives us the origin of Sarah Fier and the curse on Shadyside, while also bringing back both the stories from Part 1: 1994 and Part 2: 1978. These past three weeks have shown that this weekly style of release can be a new format for Netflix. When approaching the trilogy as a whole, it’s not too far off from what we might imagine a 6 part series to be.
The following review contains spoilers for the entire Fear Street trilogy.
What a satisfying ending to this story. The film picks up right where 1978 left off, with Deena (Kiana Madeira) jumping into the body of Sarah Fier in 1666. Living in the body of Sarah, we play out the days before the beginning of the curse and find the true culprit of the tragedies that have spanned the last three hundred years.
For those playing along at home, the person who has been behind all of this has been right in front of our faces. Yes, Goode is Evil. It was hard not to suspect the young attractive Sheriff Nick Goode (Ashley Zukerman) who seemed a bit too cagey in 1994 to be trusted. But the series threw a curveball by introducing us to a young Nick (Ted Sutherland), who not only became friends with young Ziggy (Sadie Sink) but saved her life when she was nearly killed by one of the murderers.
I will say that it’s a little confusing that the reveal ultimately meant that Nick was the one who caused the murders at Camp Nightwing, since he seemed so desperate to get the kids off the campgrounds. His turn to true evil as an adult in 1994 kind of takes away some of the nuances that might have existed for the character. It’s also a bit on the nose to reveal the villain as the only cis white male character, who also happens to be a cop, but Fear Street has never been subtle.
The notion that Sarah Fier was behind the curse on the village of Union — a pre-split Shadyside and Sunnyvale — always rang false. Anyone who knows anything about witchcraft accusations knows that the majority of women killed for witchcraft are mere victims of a town turning on them. Of course, this is the case once again for young Sarah Fier. We learn that Sarah, much like Deena, fell in love with one of the girls in Union, Hannah Miller (Olivia Welch). Throwing all of the previous cast together into this flashback is a clever way to keep your main cast while also taking the story back in time. After all, is Shadyside not caught in an endless loop of violence? History is always repeating itself.
Because this is 1666, Sarah and Hannah’s clandestine love turns suspicious eyes against them when a supernatural curse plagues the town. The water is poisoned, the paster goes crazy and kills a bunch of kids, the food is spoiled. The town starts to turn on each other and Sarah and Hannah are their target. Also in town is Solomon Goode (Ashley Zukerman), a widower who is kind to Sarah. It’s jarring to see Solomon and Deena as a potential couple, man, am I glad we are out of the 1600s. But the kind Solomon Goode is actually not what he seems, and he’s made a Faustian deal, trading one soul in exchange for prosperity in the land and letting Sarah and Hannah take the fall for it all.
This then reveals the split between Shadyside and Sunnyvale. Those living under the protection of the Goode curse benefit, aka Sunnyvale, and those living in Shadyside are simply lining up to be lead to the slaughter. It’s completely unclear how the geography of Union County works, how the hanging tree where Sarah died, is also the same tree near Camp Nighthawk, is also the same tree in the mall, which leads the underground tunnels to Nick Goode’s house. There is some very creative town geography at play here.
Highlights for Fear Street Part 3: 1666 are both the 1666 flashbacks (confusing accents aside) and the final showdown at the Shadyside Mall. The flashbacks tie together the stories of the future and also the mystery of the curse, while the final showdown gives the Shadysiders the justice they deserve after being terrorized for centuries at the hands of the Goode family. And, in the end, everyone gets their happy ending. Deena and Hannah are reunited and safe, Ziggy is able to give Nurse Lane some closure, and Shadyside’s bad luck is undone. The film ends with an expected stinger for future Fear Streets as a hand grabs the grimoire left behind by Nick in the caverns beneath Shadyside.
Fear Street Part 3: 1666 strikes a perfect balance by incorporating elements of the previous films and doing what a good final movie in a trilogy must always do, answer all the questions posed in the previous two movies without abandoning a plot. Slicing the film in two by adding a 1994 Part 2 card certainly helped in rounding out the story and bringing us back to our hero Deena as she figured out the mystery of her town.
Fear Street Part 3: 1666 is streaming now on Netflix.