‘Fear Street: 1978’: All of the burning questions left for the epic finale

A disheveled young man and woman sit and talk
Ted Sutherland as Nick and Sadie Sink as Ziggy in “Fear Street: 1978”

Warning: The following article contains a spoiler-y breakdown of Netflix’s “Fear Street: 1978” and what remains unresolved ahead of the final chapter, “Fear Street: 1666.”

Last week, audiences were introduced to some serious teen slasher movie magic with “Fear Street: 1994.” Viewers quickly learned that Shadyside, Ohio, is a cursed city with one relentless witch set on turning people into killers.

At the center of this town’s calamity lies a history that informs the past, present and future — as the movie echoes, “the past is never really the past” while teasing more developments.


In “Fear Street: 1978,” (now streaming on Netflix) directed by Leigh Janiak and starring Emily Rudd (Cindy Berman) and Sadie Sink (“Ziggy” Berman), the past and the present collide at Camp Nightwing, but still leave behind a trail of mysteries.

These are some of the major questions raised by the haunting tale — ahead of the final installment in the R.L. Stine-inspired trilogy, “Fear Street: 1666” (streaming July 16).

‘Fear Street: 1994’ is just the first part of a new horror trilogy arriving on Netflix in July. We’re breaking down the most pressing questions for the next two films to answer.

June 30, 2021

Why was Tommy Slater targeted?

Slater is attacked by Nurse Lane after she claims to have seen his name on a wall. Later in the film, the teens discover his name is indeed on a cave wall amongst the names of other town killers, including Nurse Lane’s daughter, Ruby Lane.

Nurse Lane approaches Slater with a knife and says, “I’m sorry, but I can’t save you. I saw your name, I saw the wall. One way or another, you’re going to die tonight.”

Leading up to becoming possessed by the witch, Slater hears voices in his head and experiences severe headaches. Even though it seems clear that Lane wanted to stop Slater before he became the next killer, the reason the witch chose to target him is unknown.

Can Samantha Fraser be saved?

Three young people look at a newspaper.
The fate of Sam (Olivia Welch, center) hangs in the balance heading into the “Fear Street” finale.

While most people are killed after the witch enchants them, Fraser was subdued at the end of “1994” while still under the witch’s control. Johnson tells her brother that she is determined to save Fraser, with whom she is in love .

For some reason, the witch seems to have a special interest in keeping hold of Fraser, which raises the question of whether the teen will ever have control back even if the Shadyside curse can be broken.

What deal did Sarah Fier make with the devil?

A close shot of a woman's face.
Elizabeth Scopel as Sarah Fier in “Fear Street”
(VanDam Netflix / Netflix, INC.)

Before Ziggy gets her burn patched up by Nurse Lane, she sees a sketch of the witch’s mark in Lane’s office and then, later on, Cindy and Tommy find the book when they’re snooping in the infirmary.

Slater reads aloud, “the deal was made with the devil. Sarah Fier cut off her wicked hand on Satan’s stone in exchange for eternal life, scarring the soil beneath with the witch’s mark bringing darkness upon the land.”

While Alice later confirms that the witch is real and Nurse Lane was likely trying to kill Slater when she saw the teen’s name added to the list of killers in the cave, the only new info on Fier’s origins is that her body and hand must be united to break the curse.

This explains why Nurse Lane was trying to dig up the hand and stop other teens from following her daughter Ruby’s path, which included killing seven friends and herself at a party.

The connection between the witch’s mark, the curse, Shadyside and the killings will unfold in “Fear Street: 1666.”

Did the people of Shadyside hang the witch?

A group of youngsters play beneath a sign that reads "Camp Nightwing."
Camp Nightwing in “Fear Street: 1978”

Nurse Lane’s book explains, “She (the witch) emerged by the meeting house one hand severed, lost forever —we hang the witch, body chained and buried but without her hand, her grip on the land holds firm.”

If the people of Shadyside are the ones that hung the witch, it would explain why she specifically haunts their town .

It also suggests that she will curse Shadyside forever if her hand is not reunited with her body. Nurse Lane’s book also says, “When (the witch) is near, blood will fall. And the curse will last til body and hand unite,”
which is later confirmed when the Johnson siblings dig up the witch’s hand at the mall right before “1978” ends. They must reunite the hand and body to break the curse.

What is the significance of the witches’ mark?

A hieroglyph with a flame inside.
The witch’s mark in “Fear Street: 1978”
(Jessica Miglio)

The symbolism of the witches’ mark reoccurs throughout the second film.

It first shows up in the beginning when Ziggy is burned by fellow campers with what they call a witch’s mark, as the teens try to simulate hanging her like a witch as punishment for stealing.

Following that altercation, Ziggy discovers Nurse Lane’s book with a sketch of the witch’s mark when she’s searching the infirmary.

When asked about the mark by Ziggy, Lane brings up her daughter but doesn’t elaborate on the witch or the mark. Later on, the teens discover not only a carving of the witch’s mark in the cave, which is where Sarah Fier made a deal with the devil, but also a map. In the cave, they also encounter guiding visions, like the children with eyes gouged out, that hint at what happened in the past.

Where did Nurse Lane’s book come from?

An old book opened
Lane’s book in “Fear Street: 1978”
(Jamie Adam Midgley / Netflix)

Nurse Lane’s book is full of vital information on the witch’s history and motives, and yet there’s no explanation as to how such valuable knowledge fell into her hands. And she disappears from the camp before the slaughter begins, leaving her whereabouts a mystery as well.

The book’s origins seem to be more than just a plot device, and possibly something that will connect to the witch’s deal with the devil.