He's Back (The Man Behind the Mask)

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"He's Back (The Man Behind the Mask)"
Single cover
Single by Alice Cooper
from the album Constrictor
Released October 1986
Recorded 1986
Length 3:43
Label MCA Records
Writer(s) Alice Cooper, Kane Roberts, Tom Kelly
Producer(s) Alice Cooper
Alice Cooper singles chronology
"I Love America"
(1983)
"He's Back (The Man Behind the Mask)"
(1986)
"Teenage Frankenstein"
(1987)

"He's Back (The Man Behind the Mask)" is a song by American shock rock musician Alice Cooper. It was released as the lead single from his 1986 album Constrictor, and the theme song of Friday the 13th Part VI: Jason Lives, a slasher film and sixth part of the Friday the 13th film series released in the same year. The song is heard various times throughout the film and in the end credits. Two other songs, "Teenage Frankenstein" (also from Constrictor) and "Hard Rock Summer" (which did not appear outside of the Jason Lives soundtrack) are also featured in the film.

The song features the famous "ki-ki-ki ma-ma-ma" (admittedly in its popular misheard version, "ch-ch-ch, ha-ha-ha") sound effect, a trademark of the Friday the 13th series.[1]

"He's Back (The Man Behind the Mask)" was a minor success, popular among fans of Cooper's later work and enthusiasts of slasher films. It has been called "strangely new wave-ish"[2] and said to "perfectly enscapulate the Friday the 13th films and the era in which they came to prominence."[3]

A demo version of the song, with a slightly rockier and much more upbeat feel, as well as the final release version, were featured in the four-disc retrospective boxed set The Life and Crimes of Alice Cooper, which chronicles Cooper's career. The song was also available on a compilation album of songs from his two late-1980s MCA albums, Constrictor and Raise Your Fist and Yell, entitled Prince of Darkness.[2]

The song has been covered by some other artists. Finnish metal band Children of Bodom recorded a version in 2002, but it was never released, and "He's Back" has been performed live by another Finnish metal band, Lordi.[4] In addition, the song was covered by One Man Army and the Undead Quartet, which was released on the Swedish death metal group's 2007 album Error in Evolution.

A reference to the song is made in the 2005 Friday the 13th tie-in novel Friday the 13th: Hate-Kill-Repeat; while attending a party, a character notices that the song being played is by Alice Cooper and that the premise of it involves "something about a man behind a mask".[5]

Music video[edit]

The song is well known for its music video, which combines clips from Jason Lives with original footage featuring Cooper performing the song and Jason Voorhees (played, as he is in the film, by C. J. Graham) menacing teenagers at a midnight showing of Jason Lives. This video is not present on any of the DVD releases of the film, most likely due to licensing issues.

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Slasher Shopper". Slasherama.com. Retrieved 2012-02-20. 
  2. ^ a b Prince of Darkness at Allmusic.
  3. ^ Alice Cooper: The Man Behind the Mask!", an article at X-Entertainment.
  4. ^ YouTube - Lordi He is back (man behind mask) and monster man
  5. ^ Arnopp, Jason (2005-10-25). Friday the 13th: Hate-Kill-Repeat. Black Flame. ISBN 1-84416-271-0.