|Also known as||Freddy's Nightmares: A Nightmare on Elm Street: The Series|
|Created by||Wes Craven (characters)|
|Presented by||Robert Englund|
|Theme music composer||Nicholas Pike|
Gary S. Scott
|Country of origin||United States|
|No. of seasons||2|
|No. of episodes||44 (List of episodes)|
|Executive producer(s)||Jeff Freilich
Scott A. Stone
|Running time||45–48 minutes|
|Production company(s)||Stone Television
New Line Television
Warner Bros. Television (1989–1990)
|Original run||October 8, 1988– March 12, 1990|
Freddy's Nightmares (full title: Freddy's Nightmares: A Nightmare on Elm Street: The Series) is an American horror anthology series, which aired in syndication from October 1988 until March 1990. A spin-off from the Nightmare on Elm Street series, each story was introduced by Freddy Krueger (played, as in the movies, by Robert Englund). This format is essentially the same as that employed by Alfred Hitchcock Presents, Tales from the Crypt, or The Twilight Zone. The pilot episode was directed by Tobe Hooper, and begins with Freddy Krueger's acquittal of the child-murdering charges due to his officer's lack of reviewing the Miranda warning at the time of Freddy's arrest. A mob of parents eventually corners Freddy in a power plant (his workplace), leading to him being torched by the police officer, dying and gaining his familiar visage.
The series was produced by New Line Television, producers of the film series, and Stone Television. It was originally distributed by Lorimar-Telepictures. However, Warner Bros. Television would assume syndication rights after acquiring Lorimar-Telepictures.
Due to the murderous basis of the Freddy Krueger character, New Line Cinema opted to not develop a television series with a regular batch of characters to mix it up with Krueger on a continuous basis; deeming it futile, since he would inevitably kill most of them, and there would be no one left. Instead the producers created an anthology series, employing a new crop of actors to be used for each episode.
Each week Freddy's Nightmares told a different story, or stories, of a dark rooted and/or grim nature that took place in the fictitious town of Springwood, Ohio, and in particular, on Elm Street; the same setting as the A Nightmare on Elm Street films. Though the Freddy Krueger character would occasionally play a part in the plot, most of the stories did not involve him (it was, however, often hinted that Krueger indirectly influenced the desolate nature of the plotlines).
Krueger's primary function was to host the series. He was featured in regular bumper segments, where he would offer an ominous or slapstick reaction to the happenings of the episode—culminating in him giving a quick, and usually eerie, epilogue at the end.
One element that makes the series unique is its two-tier story approach. Most of the episodes feature two different stories that each take up the first and second halves. Every second story, however, usually built on a character who played a minor (or supporting) role in the first. For instance, in one episode a woman plays in a game show hosted by the devil. In the second part she meets an old woman, who is actually her future self, who tells her she is going to kill her husband.
Due to budget restraints, the producers of the series were forced to use unknown actors, rather than some of the stars associated with the theatrical franchise. The only actor from the film series retained for the TV series was Robert Englund, as Freddy Krueger.
Some of the featured actors who went on to later become notable were:
- Robin Antin (The Pussycat Dolls)
- Sarah Buxton (Don't Tell Mom the Babysitter's Dead, Spread)
- Kyle Chandler (Friday Night Lights, Super 8)
- Morris Chestnut (Boyz n the Hood, The Best Man)
- Joshua Cox (Babylon 5)
- Richard Eden (RoboCop: The Series)
- Mariska Hargitay (Law & Order: Special Victims Unit)
- Eva LaRue (All My Children, CSI: Miami)
- Phill Lewis (The Wayans Bros., The Suite Life of Zack & Cody)
- John Cameron Mitchell (Hedwig and the Angry Inch)
- Bill Moseley (The Texas Chainsaw Massacre 2, The Devil's Rejects)
- Yvette Nipar (RoboCop: The Series, General Hospital)
- Lori Petty (Tank Girl, A League of Their Own, Point Break
- Brad Pitt (Mr. & Mrs. Smith, The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, Moneyball)
- Tim Russ (Star Trek: Voyager, Samantha Who?, iCarly)
- Richard Speight, Jr. (The Agency)
Other notable guest stars featured in the series were:
- Timothy Bottoms (The Last Picture Show)
- Jeffrey Combs (Re-Animator)
- Jeff Conaway (Grease, Taxi)
- Mary Crosby (Dallas)
- Ellen Albertini Dow (The Wedding Singer)
- Tony Dow (Leave It to Beaver)
- Diane Franklin (Amityville II: The Possession)
- Richard Gautier (Get Smart)
- Tamara Glynn (Halloween 5: The Revenge of Michael Myers)
- Bob Goen (Entertainment Tonight)
- Tiffany Helm (Friday the 13th Part V: A New Beginning)
- Joyce Hyser (Just One of the Guys)
- David Lander (Laverne & Shirley)
- George Lazenby (On Her Majesty's Secret Service)
- Lar Park Lincoln (Friday the 13th Part VII: The New Blood)
- Dick Miller (The Howling, Chopping Mall, Night of the Creeps, Gremlins, Little Shop of Horrors)
- Susan Oliver (Peyton Place)
- Jay Thomas (Cheers, Murphy Brown)
- Tracey Walter (Annie Hall, Silence of the Lambs)
- Jill Whitlow (Weird Science, Night of the Creeps)
Home video releases
- "No More Mr. Nice Guy"
- "Lucky Stiff"
- "It's My Party and You'll Die If I Want You To"
- "Dreams That Kill"
- "Freddy's Tricks and Treats"
In the UK, eight VHS tapes were released by Braveworld Ltd. in 1993. Each tape features two episodes. The tapes released were:
- The Nightmare Begins Again: "No More Mr. Nice Guy" and "Killer Instinct"
- Freddy's Nightmares 2: "Sister's Keeper" and "Freddy's Tricks and Treats"
- Rock My Freddy: "Judy Miller, Come on Down" and "The Bride Wore Red"
- Saturday Nightmare Fever: "Saturday Night Special" and "Cabin Fever"
- Do Dreams Bleed?: "Do Dreams Bleed" and "Rebel Without a Car"
- Freddy's Mother's Day: Mother's Day" and "Black Tickets"
- Safe Sex: "Safe Sex" and "Deadline"
- It's a Miserable Life: "It's a Miserable Life" and "Love Stinks"
In 2003, Volume 1 (the first 3 episodes) was released on Region 2 DVD in Ireland and the UK, by Warner Home Video. Volume 2 was also planned for release later that year, however, sales were so poor, that Warner canceled the release of Volume 2.
In 2011, a Blu-ray collection of the original seven A Nightmare on Elm Street films was released in the US. The set included a DVD with special features, which included two episodes of the show ("It's a Miserable Life" and "Killer Instinct").
NBC Universal's horror and suspense-themed cable channel Chiller previously aired Freddy's Nightmares with marathons once a month. Season one and two were shown one after another, with commercial breaks, however, the channel stopped broadcasting the show on April 1, 2011, with the last episode shown on March 31, 2011.
In Sweden TV4 Guld is airing the show every week.
- "Epi-Log #8 (July 1991) - Freddy's Nightmares". Star Tech. Retrieved 2013-07-15.
- "Freddy's Nightmares — Home Video | Nightmare on Elm Street Companion — Ultimate Online Resource to Horror Series A Nightmare on Elm Street". Nightmareonelmstreetfilms.com. Retrieved 2013-07-15.
- amazon.co.uk listing of Volume 1
- amazon.co.uk listing of Volume 2. Note how, despite showing a release in 2003, it shows "Classification: To be announced"
- RL Shaffer 23 Oct 2012 (2012-10-23). "A Nightmare on Elm Street Collection Blu-ray Review". IGN. Retrieved 2013-07-15.
- Freddy's Nightmares at Official Website
- Freddy's Nightmares at Nightmare on Elm Street Companion
- Freddy's Nightmares at the Internet Movie Database
- Freddy's Nightmares at TV.com