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"Fuck... you!"

–Wes' final words before dying to Richie Kirsch in the Ghostface costume.

Wes Hicks is a character who appears in the Scream (2022 film) reboot, informally known as Scream 5. He is the teenage son of Sheriff Judy Hicks and a good friend of Tara Carpenter, who he appears to have a crush on.

The character's name is an homage to late franchise veteran director and acclaimed horror filmmaker, Wes Craven (1939—2015). Hicks is an example of a false main character, sometimes known as part of the Decoy Protagonist trope of hiring more famous actors than their co-stars (in this case, Dylan Minnette) in a major role that is later revealed to be a small part, with the character being one of the first victims.

In the events of the film, he is the very first out of Tara's friendship group to die, despite his precautious state of mind. Minnette's character's shower scene is also a gender-inverse homage to Janet Leigh in the 1960 Alfred Hitchcock classic, Psycho. In the eulogy party at Amber Freeman's house, the teen voices chanting, "For Wes!" are previous employees of Craven, honoring his memory.

Wes was the overall third character to fall victim to the fifth Ghostface killing spree, known as the Legacy Killings/Murders.

He was portrayed by Dylan Minnette.

Biography[]

Early Life[]

Wes as a Child

Wes' contact number image, as shown on Judy's phone screen.

Wes was born to Judy Hicks and an unnamed father sometime in approx. August 2004 (due to sixth film's retcon, to align with age ad mortem, changes his birthdate to August 2005 instead seeing as if kept with original birthday, he would've been 18 at time of death; see Continuity Errors). By September 2022, his mother appeared to be his sole caretaker, and his parents were uninvolved as early as 11 years prior, during the events of Scream 4 (2011 film).

He was around seven (sixth films retcon makes him six during 2011 murders) years old after the Woodsboro Massacre Remake (2011). In the early to mid 2010s, a teenage Samantha Carpenter babysat him and they become close friends.

It is speculated that Samantha would bring her sister, Tara Carpenter along with her, as she was Wes's age. Though given Wes and Tara were close to the same age, they may have simply known each other through middle school already. Even until high school, Wes' mother still remains quite overprotective of him, arming him with a stun gun.

Background[]

With his mother a trained officer at the Woodsboro Police Department (Deputy Sheriff and finally Sheriff after succeeding her predecessor, Dewey Riley), Wes developed into an independent, compassionate and self-sufficient child.

He is shown knowledgeable about practical safety measures in an Edward Snowden-esque way. It is possible his technophobic hyper-vigilance serves as a precursor to his introduction in Scream (2022), given his background as the son of a high-appointed law enforcement person.

Young Wes Hicks

Wes as a child, shown after Judy's murder.

Being a police officer, Judy was a helicopter parent to Wes, always ensuring that he carried a taser and mace with him, much to the mockery of his friends. Sometime in the early to mid 2010s, during or following the 2011 Woodsboro Murders, Judy had hired teenage Samantha Carpenter to babysit Wes, a regular occurrence.

Undetermined Timeframe: It is unknown whether the babysitting gig ended abruptly following Samantha's legal troubles (such as Judy firing Sam) as a delinquent teenager, or whether Judy possibly showed lenience to her situation, given she was close to her son.

Unexplained Absence: It is unknown whether Wes had a relationship with his father, as they did not share the same surname, though his absence in Scream 4 (2011), during which Judy faced a high-risk case with Jill Roberts and Charlie Walker, suggests he likely was staying with his father.

The face-off largely occurred on the weekend of Friday and Saturday. In Judy's first appearance, it is a Thursday morning while she is at work (and she is unseen off duty), and the following day is a Friday, where much of the action takes place. In the fifth film, we first meet Wes on a Monday, following the weekend.

As prior stated, Wes is not seen or mentioned during the 2011 Woodsboro Murders, however given that he was alive during this time, it is likely Judy took precautions to keep him safe. It is also possible he was staying with his father at the time, prior to Judy becoming sole caretaker to her son.

The Woodsboro Legacy Murders (2022)[]

You make yourself harder to find. Disable GPS, cover up your camera, delete social media...

–Wes to Liv McKenzie, Scream (2022)

Around 9:30 p.m. on a regular Thursday night, Tara Carpenter is attacked and stabbed seven times by Ghostface, an entity masked by Jill Roberts that almost killed his mother a decade prior.

S22-WoodsboroHigh-3

A weekend of public safety concern ensues off-screen, including Tara's surgery, and informing the police of her account of the night and so forth. Despite reservations, on would-be Monday morning, Wes decides to reluctantly call her estranged sister, Samantha Carpenter, despite the pair not being on the best terms.

It is obvious from Sam's later interactions with both Tara and Judy that Wes committed to this from his own volition, rather than a suggestion by someone else, showing his good relationship with Sam.

He texts her, then she calls him, informing her about her sister, Tara's stabbing and her subsequent surgery. This leads a concerned 25-year-old Sam to drive from Modesto, California to Woodsboro, California, over five years after she left in her hometown.

Wes is now a 17-year-old High School Senior with his friends, Amber Freeman, Chad and Mindy Meeks-Martin (collectively referred to as "the twins") visit Tara at Woodsboro Community Hospital, under the watchful eye of Wes's helicopter mother, Judy Hicks, now Sheriff. Notably absent is Liv McKenzie, for unspecified reasons she is unable to attend. Sam is happy to see Wes, telling her boyfriend, Richie Kirsch that she used to babysit him as well as the twins. Wes and the others leave Tara's hospital room to give the sisters privacy in their reunion.

Later that night, the rest of the teens hang out in a bar, following the Principal of Woodsboro High (voiced by Drew Barrymore)'s announcement that classes are suspended the following day due to public safety concerns. This gives the kids time to themselves. Due to being underage, they are at "a kiddie's table" at the local bar on Maine, where they can't buy a "real drink" (according to 22-year-old, Vince Schneider). During their pool season, the kids begin to discuss Tara's recent attack.

Mindy declares they are all suspects, except Liv, because she's "too boring to be a psycho". Mindy in particular singles out Wes in this discussion, with his noticeable innocence painted as intrigue for the audience, a possible red herring deception. She notes his crush on Tara, suggesting his motive could be, "If I can't have her, no-one can".

In the bar, they are approached by Vince, Tara and Liv's former co-worker as well as Liv's summer fling ex-boyfriend. Vince attempts to win Liv back, but Wes' friend, Chad, Liv's boyfriend, threatens him, leading to a dispute that gets all of them, including Wes kicked out of the bar. Later that night, Vince is killed in the alleyway by Ghostface, the first victim of the 26th anniversary Legacy Murders.

The following day, it is a Tuesday. With school off, Wes goes to Martha Meeks' house, the sister of Randy Meeks, an original Woodsboro Murders survivor (and subsequent Windsor College Murders victim). Martha is shown to be the mother of the twins. She is excited about "suspects", delivering the kids popcorn, much to Amber's amusement.

They bring everybody to discuss Sam and Tara's attacks, as well as Vince's murder the previous night after they left the bar. Wes proposes Dewey Riley is the killer, because he "crawled into a bottle" after being "dumped by his famous wife". Dewey is offended and hurt by this, and says in a restraint way, "Well maybe you're the killer, because that cut deep". Wes briefly gives him a gaze of sympathy.

Mindy determines the killer is creating a real-life "requel", a reboot/sequel to the original Stab (1997) featuring her uncle's character, following rejection purism of its sequels. In her view, the killer is designing what is essentially a remake of Stab (2021) directed by Rian Johnson, as a requel, following its disappointing reception from the fanbase (known as the StabHead Army).

Wes picks up on Mindy's commentary, and expresses concern for himself, and his mother, saying, "Jesus, my mother was a character in one of them". Mindy reassures her that nobody cares about the "shitty inferior sequels", therefore he is safe, but she and her brother, niece and nephew to Randy Meeks, are "screwed". With the actual killers overhearing this exchange, a diversion is used. Judy and Wes are, in fact, the next targets after all.

Death[]

Psycho References Wes Hicks

"Ever seen the movie, Psycho?"

After returning from Martha's, Judy is ordering sushi for dinner, and leaves to pick it up. She is startled by Wes who has returned home from exercising and doesn't respond to her calls as he is wearing earbuds.

Whilst Judy goes to pick up dinner, Wes showers, by his mother's suggestion, unaware that Ghostface is threatening his mother on the phone while she has drove off in the car.

S22-HicksDeath-30

From the back-and-forth communication with Ghostface (later revealed to be Richie), it is clear that he is already inside of their house, asking her, "Ever seen the movie Psycho?" as the scene intercuts with Wes taking a shower, and Judy hauntingly remembering her suggestion for him to take one. She alerts all units to her house, and rushes to the front door, yelling out her son's name, before she is stabbed violently to death by Ghostface (Amber).

Wes, unaware this has happened, gets ready for dinner by preparing plates, cutlery and drinks and starts hearing noises in his house. He searches the house and finds the front door open, and when he closes it, Ghostface jumps out behind him and attacks. Wes tries to hold back Ghostface's knife, but the killer (Richie) is eventually able to force it through his throat and kill him.

Aftermath[]

Sam Carpenter expresses shock and concern for him, after seeing Judy's corpse being covered by the police. Deputy Farney indirectly confirms to her that Wes also did not survive, saddening Sam. She contacts Richie about this, who appears to be back in the motel, watching a critical YouTube video on Stab (2021).

The night after Wes dies, Amber hosts a "memorial" for Wes at her house, 261 Turner Lane, which turns into a typical high school party, with many guests. It is a tactic intended to lure Sam, Tara and the legacy survivors inside.

When the credits roll after Amber and Richie's defeat, "For Wes" can be shown, a reference to Wes Craven.

Relationships[]

Family[]

Allies[]

Enemies[]

Quotes[]

  • "Ghostface is back."
  • "For Wes!" (Chad toasting Wes after his demise, a nod to late movie director, Wes Craven).
  • "You got stabbed a billion times, got dumped by your famous wife, and crawled into a bottle. I think it's safe to say you're on the suspect list." (Wes's suspecting Dewey Riley).
  • ''You make yourself harder to find. Disable GPS, cover up your camera, delete social media...''

Character References[]

  • He is named after veteran director, Wes Craven (1939—2015), who directed the first four films prior to his death.
  • Meta: a woman by the surname Carpenter babysits a teenage boy named Wes, a reference to Tatum Riley's misspoken line reference to Wes Craven/John Carpenter (director of the original 1978 Halloween), telling Sidney Prescott she is starting to sound like some "Wes Carpenter flick or something"
  • Wes is a modern gender-inverse of the typical blonde female character used for objectification and is killed early in the film.
  • References to Marion Crane from Psycho (1960).
    • Ghostface (Richie) asks Judy if she has seen the film Psycho (1960), referencing Wes showering, in a vulnerable Marion Crane role.
    • Wes showering is also an homage to the opening scene of Stab (1997), with the film opening with Casey Becker heading in to shower before being interrupted, seen in Scream 2 and through archive footage in Scream 4, during Stab-a-Thon.
    • Psycho Marion Crane

      The famous shower scene in Psycho, portrayed by Janet Leigh (mother of Jamie Lee Curtis).

      A false main character (but not the leading false protagonist like Marion), similar to Janet Leigh as Marion Crane, killed 30 minutes in during the shower scene.
    • Dylan Minnette was the most famous actor of the younger newbie cast, and his background and name implied he would be more significant to the film. Instead, he is the first of the new kids to die.
  • Wes is the first male blonde character to fall victim, following previous female blonde characters in the franchise
  • Holds many references to first seen Scream (1996 film) and Scream franchise character, Casey Becker.
    • Portrayed by a high-profile actor like Drew Barrymore was, where fans anticipated a bigger role for each; however, they were the first teenagers killed off. (Technically, Casey dies second, but Steven Orth is a cameo role and is mutilated off-screen).
    • Both are blonde teenaged victims.
    • For the Stab version of Casey Becker portrayed by Heather Graham, they share the infamous shower scene, except Wes is male.
      • Unlike the original Casey, Wes did not have a romantic partner he was waiting on, like Casey in Stab stating she didn't have a boyfriend, nor was it nighttime like either from the when his eventual attack and murder took place.
    • Mothers (Mrs. Becker / Judy Hicks) distraught over their death. (The requel for Scream (2022) reverses this, where Judy is distraught over Ghostface's warning that he will kill Wes).

Trivia[]

  • His character name was confirmed by HelloSidney.com.[2]
  • His name is a reference to the late horror movie director, Wes Craven who directed the first four Scream films.
    • His phone number includes 1939, which is the year that Craven was born.
  • His status as Judy Hicks' son was revealed on the promotional TikTok account @toobrashsarah.
  • In the first 2019 screenplay draft, titled Scream Forever, Richie's attack on Sam in the climax is referred to "just like with Wes" by description, indicating he is Wes' killer. It is not known if this is canon in the final product, though with on-screen events, very little changed from the first draft written in 2019 other than simplified dialogue and Dewey's re-introduction.
  • Draft Goof: Also, in the draft Scream Forever, Wes states his mother was "a character in Stab 4". This was a failed meta reference to Scream 4 (2011), as that film already covered that Stab already released five sequels to Stab 2, with the most recent entry being Stab 7 starring Kristen Bell as Chloe.
    • Strangely, the script draft also makes a direct reference to Kristen Bell's role as the killer in Stab 7, making the goof a simple case of forgotten continuity.
    • The final version states him to be a character in "one of them", a vaguer meta reference that fixes the draft error. Despite this, from examining basic continuity, Judy would only possibly be a character in Stab 8.
    • It is likely the vaguer description in the final cut used to correct this was to prevent audience confusion, and to streamline-reference the past instead. After Judy and Wes die, Richie sits at the motel eating pizza, watching hateful commentary on the film, another indication he is the killer.
  • His existence may cover Hicks' Ghostface red herring in Scream 4 (2011). Her disappearance acts possibly stemmed from routine checkups on her son (and his then-14-year-old babysitter, Sam Carpenter).
  • Wes's birthday despite being in August 2004, is a discrepancy in that due to his age of death being stated as 17 in September 2022 during the Third Woodsboro Murders, who if kept with his original birthday, would've actually been 18 at the time of his death, not 17, thus conflicting (see Continuity Errors).
    • In order to rectify this mistake, it's possible his birthday that his birthday be moved to August 2005 instead, which after Liv McKenzie and Amber Freeman, makes him the third character out of the three and in Tara's group in which he, Liv, and Amber have their birthdays be aligned in order to clarify timeline discrepancies and not be misaligned with their ages of death as stated on their character wikis, due to being from the Woodsboro High Class of 2023 (originally 2022) now, whereas Tara and the Meeks-Martin twins keep their canonical birthdays.
  • His character's "momma's boy" complex resembles Billy Loomis (a possible red herring).
  • Ironically the first of his friend group to die. (As the Sheriff's son, he took preemptive safety measures and warned others to do so as well).
  • Wes lists for his friends to take care of themselves by disabling GPS, taping over their phone cameras (and other electronics, such as computers), and isolating and making each other harder to find, such as by deleting social media. Before being made of fun of by Amber, he stated to them to arm themselves with pepper spray and a taser.
  • All the items Wes listed are nods to the Scream: TV Series, which aired on MTV from 2015-2016 during it's first two seasons, and reference with each of the things he'd said:
    • Taping Over The Phone Camera: An homage reference in Season 1 to "Pilot", wherein Nina Patterson is monitored and recorded through use of malware on her open laptop, while changing into a bikini to head to her hot tub the night of her murder, which is later explored by Noah Foster and Audrey Jensen upon their stumbling on their discovery of this monitoring in the school-portal website for their teacher Seth Branson's 11th grade English class. Nina and her ex, Tyler, and Noah's own ex, Riley, are listed as teacher's aides, who wound up victims and was used to suspect him of being the killer (unaware the malware was used for his own secret, grooming relationship with a student).
      • In the second to last episode "The Dance", it comes back up when 17 year old Brooke Maddox (who was groomed in an inappropriate relationship with Seth, before she was attacked and he was arrested on suspicions of this and being the killer) is about to shower, as she stays as a guest at her friend Jake Fitzgerald's house and notices a laptop in the room recording her just as she's about to shower, much to her suspicion of it being Jake, after she goes to close it (which he denies, but acknowledged knowing of the use of malware because of Nina).
    • Disabling GPS: This would be a reference in "Revelations" on how the killer hacked the town's grid and was able to track movements due to the use of location sharing, which is also shared again in Season 2, with the killer using it when prompting Emma Duval and Audrey to find their friend, Noah, after he was stabbed and buried alive in "The Vanishing", as well as in taunting and manipulating Audrey, due to possibly knowing and tracking his targets because of said hack in the previous season, or through other ways.
    • Make Yourself Harder To Find, Delete Social Media: This is perhaps a reference to when Emma was called by the killer in "Pilot" and asking her why she was crying and sad (reference to the calls of Ghostface in the films and seeing their victims), watching her, with Emma asking them if they're watching and saying how it's what she wants, listing "on Instagram and Facebook. Perfect smiles, perfect lives", before taunting her.
      • Isolating right after going to rehabilitation post-Season 1 and later returning in Season 2, is probably why Emma only keeps to herself, as Wes had said, to make them harder to find, and keeps herself at first from not going onto her friend Noah's podcast The Morgue once she returns to her hometown of Lakewood in "I Know What You Did Last Summer".
    • Pepper Spray, Check, Taser, Check: These would then be shown and used in the third season (with the TV series now being an anthology) of the TV series, now on VH1, subtitled Scream: Resurrection, which despite its release on July 2019, was set within (regardless of in-universe) it's murders and events, during fall 2018 on Halloween. The following characters carried each weapon:
      • Jamal Elliot as Ghostface carried a taser of which he used to tase down and knockout 16 year old Marcus Elliot after school during the day, after he came into the locker room, after luring him out of detention via text in the premiere episode, "The Deadfast Club".
        • The use of taser was also shown when Emma tased Noah back in the first season, in "Aftermath" .
      • Kym, carried pepper spray, using it when she was almost attacked by Jamal as Ghostface, at her high school's front office and after school during night, in the second episode "Devil's Night", who had, after using the pepper spray (or Mace) and having sprayed the weapon before finding it to be ineffective, due to the mask giving him protection, before being given a chase scene.
    • The use of the weapons in Season 3 to the same ones Wes had in the fifth film, ironically and unfortunately, were out of his reach, seeing as before being killed via stabbed in the throat by Richie Kirsch as Ghostface, was struggling to push the knife back and trying to reach for them, which he had left on a counter, although only the taser would've been the only effective weapon had he had it, due to Kym's use of her pepper spray in-universe only 4 years prior (regardless of continuity).
  • Wes was 6-7 years old during and after the events of the 2011 Woodsboro Murders.
  • Wes was childhood best friends with Chad when he was 4 and Chad was 5.
  • Wes Is 10 years old in August 2014 (sixth films retcon makes him turn 10 in August 2015 instead).
  • He is currently the youngest member in his friend group because Tara was born in 2002.

Gallery[]

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Wes Hicks has a Photo Gallery.

Appearances[]

Character Guide[]

  1. The Third Woodsboro Murders in Scream (2022) took place on the 26th anniversary, so just after the 25th anniversary of the September 1996 murders, thus in September 2022. Wes was born approximately in August 2005 (originally was set up for August 2004), so he would’ve been 15 the year before and turned 16 (2021), who in 2022, had just turned 17 and would've turned 18 the year after (2023).
  2. [1]
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