Illinois and Texas are known for many things, but in the history of horror movies, these two states are known as the home of two characters that are among the most notorious serial killers in the history of the genre. One of them is Michael Myers, the masked killer that debuted in John Carpenter’s Halloween movie, while the other is Leatherface, the maniac from The Texas Chainsaw Massacre series.
Michael Myers and Leatherface are fairly similar in many ways, including their origins and their masks, but Michael Myers would win in a direct clash due to his superhuman abilities. Leatherface is dangerous and quite deranged, and his signature chainsaw is more dangerous than Myers’ knives, but Michael Myers possesses certain superhuman abilities that make him more powerful.
The rest of this article is going to be divided into three sections. The first two are going to bring an overview of the two characters, in whose scopes we are going to compare their powers, including their signature techniques. Finally, we’re going to bring you a detailed analysis of the two characters to determine which one would win in a direct clash.
Michael Myers and His Powers
Michael Myers is a fictional movie character from the American horror movie series Halloween. He first appeared in John Carpenter’s horror film 1978 about Halloween as a boy who first murdered his older sister Judith and after 15 years – as an adult who escaped from a psychiatric institution – came back to his hometown of Haddonfield, where he hunted Laurie Strode, played by Jamie Lee Curtis.
In addition to films, the character also appears in several comics and novels, most notably in the 1979 novel by Curtis Richards, which does not deal with the film, but deals with the character of Michael Myers himself. The creators of the character are John Carpenter and Debra Hill.
Powers and Abilities
Michael Myers is initially portrayed as a regular boy with a mental disorder. But, once he grows up, he becomes an imposing serial killer who, seemingly, cannot be killed nor seriously injured, no matter how hard one tries. Michael Myers also has superhuman strengths and durability, which allows him to kill his victims with ease.
Personality and Psychology
The cause for which he is immortal and indestructible, and his natural rage and instincts, is commonly thought to be caused by The Curse of Thorn as stated in the sixth movie, but that is partially false as Michael showed signs of antisocial behavior ever since he was a boy.
This was due to the lack of attention from his parents and his sister Judith who brought men into his house instead of taking care of him, which began to generate mental disorders and a natural hatred for his entire family. This curse, therefore, does not force Michael to kill; he does it voluntarily. The curse only gives him power, strength, and resistance.
Still, as seen in Halloween 4, at the beginning of the film, when Michael hears that he has a niece, he comes back to life because of the hatred he feels that someone else of his own blood is still alive, showing that he kills of his own free will.
His victims also include everyone who gets in his way, since for example it has been seen several times that people who dislike Michael can also die by his hand. According to the belief of the Thorn sect, Michael Myers was the perfect candidate to be the bearer of the Curse of Thorn.
Michael agreed to be the bearer of Thorn to fulfill his revenge against his lineage, however, something that was not told to Michael is that the curse de thorn would also partially control him so that he could not escape or attack the other cult members as Michael was always unpredictable and Thorn provided him with only powers that go beyond any ordinary human capacity.
It is also theorized that Michael, the man behind the mask, feels remorse for killing; for example, in Halloween 5, he seemed to fight the curse and when he took off his mask, he was crying rather and he showed his face to Jammie. He took the moment to reflect on everything that had happened, allowing Michael Myers to see spiteful and vindictive.
In a later movie, such a moment is also observed when he hesitates in front of Laurie Strode, and this indecision ends up being detrimental to him. Another theory for which Michael is immortal is that Michael’s very evil is what makes him so strong and practically unstoppable.
Michael Myers is first of all not a “normal” man, he is a being endowed with a certain intelligence but who is limited to the perception of evil and murder. He has a look in which we can only see hatred, as well as a certain absence of the notions of good and evil. Devoid of feelings, he often kills innocent people, simply because they are unlucky to cross his path.
But he has two priority types of victims: adolescents (more often girls), and especially the last living members of his family.
In the remakes, the character is very different: he is not suddenly struck by evil but gradually sinks into madness in the midst of a violent entourage. He is strong and invincible only because of his large build, and there is no evidence that he rises from his wounds in any paranormal way.
He’s much more violent in his killings but doesn’t necessarily intend to kill Laurie, he just wants her to recognize him. There is no curse story in his murderous journey, but the expression of a deranged psyche.
Simply put, the Michael Myers of the remakes is much more human than the original, and is deranged rather than possessed.
Leatherface and His Powers
Leatherface is a fictional character created by screenwriter Kim Henkel and director Tobe Hooper. His real name is Jedidiah Sawyer and he is the main villain of The Texas Chainsaw Massacre franchise, first appearing in the 1974 film of the same name.
Leatherface has also appeared in subsequent sequels, remakes, and prequels of the saga, in which he is represented as a robust and tall man, his most characteristic elements being the mask he wears and the chainsaw he uses as a weapon. His history and family have changed throughout the movies.
Leatherface is, in general, a very tall and very strong man. In the very first film, he is even a little paunchy and overweight. He is endowed with great strength and wears a mask made of skin. Very few films show his true face.
He appears in the 2003 film as a man very marked by an illness. In The Texas Chainsaw Massacre: The Beginning, it is also said that he used to self-harm.
Leatherface is different from other movie killers in that he is not sadistic or cruel: he is described as “severely retarded and mentally disturbed”. Tobe Hooper says in the documentary The Shocking Truth that he’s a “big baby” who kills to defend himself because he feels threatened, pointing out that in the first film Leatherface was terrorized by all these people walking into his home.
The character was inspired in part by serial killer Ed Gein. He lives in a deranged family that is often abusive and violent towards him. Leatherface does most of the time as his family tells him to.
Weapons and Modus Operandi
He often uses a chainsaw and sledgehammer.
Michael Myers vs Leatherface: Which Masked Killer Would Win?
Leatherface and Michael Myers have a lot in common. They come from difficult backgrounds full of horror, they wear a mask, they scare people and they’re very creative in how they perpetrate their crimes. Now, Leatherface might be more creative and bloody and he definitely looks scarier, but that is nothing compared to Michael.
Michael Myers is, as we have mentioned on several occasions here, a very specific character. Very goal-driven, he uses his superhuman strength and his nigh invulnerability to kill his victims. There doesn’t seem to be a proper way of killing him and Michael Myers always comes back. This would also happen if Leatherface would attack him.
This makes Michael Myers the clear winner here. Sure, Leatherface might be scary and dangerous, but when compared to Michael, he is just a regular killer and nothing more.