"I think this is it. I think this is the big finale."
Noah Foster
"When a Stranger Calls"
Series Scream: The Series
Season 2, Episode 12
Scream 2x12 001.jpg
Air date August 16th, 2016
Writers Eoghan O'Donnell
Director Patrick Lussier
Producers Matthew Signer; Keith Levine; Eoghan O'Donnell; Kat Landsberg; Bob Weinstein; Harvey Weinstein; Tony DiSanto; Liz Gateley; Wes Craven; Michael Gans; Richard Register; Marianne Maddalena; Cathy Konrad
Starring Willa Fitzgerald; Bex Taylor-Klaus; John Karna; Amadeus Serafini; Carlson Young; Kiana Ledé; Santiago Segura; Tracy Middendorf
Episode guide
"Heavenly Creatures"

"When a Stranger Calls" is the twelfth episode of season two of the psycho-thriller television program Scream: The Series, and the twenty-second episode of the series overall. It was directed by Patrick Lussier with a script written by Eoghan O'Donnell. It first aired on MTV on Tuesday, August 16th, 2016 at 10:00 pm. In this episode, Emma Duval and Audrey Jensen are on the run as local police are convinced that they are guilty of murdering Mayor Quinn Maddox. The true killer continues to taunt them in a game of cat and mouse, which brings the Lakewood Six back to the Zenith Theater. Emma discovers the horrifying truth behind the killer's true identity.

Synopsis[edit | edit source]

Audrey and Emma at the Pep n' Zip.

Emma Duval and Audrey Jensen are in the back of a squad car, having been arrested for the murder of Mayor Quinn Maddox. As Deputy Stevens drives down the road, the killer steps in front of the vehicle, causing him to crash into a tree. He pulls the deputy out of the car, and stabs him multiple times until he is dead. He then leaves the keys to Emma and Audrey's handcuffs on the back seat and disappears. Emma and Audrey escape, but now they are on the run.

Night turns to day, and Emma and Audrey go to the Pep n' Zip to make a phone call. The killer, who has been secretly watching them, calls and warns them not to turn themselves in, or else he will gut someone they love. Emma manages to sneak off to see Kieran Wilcox to let him know that she's okay. Audrey hangs outside and sees Eli Hudson - their number one suspect, pull up. The two girls quickly leave.

Noah, Brooke, and Emma see things they'd rather not see.

The two decide to hide out at the Zenith Theater. Audrey's an employee, and knows where the key is to get in. The building is empty so they will be able to lay low for a while. Emma calls Brooke Maddox, who comes over to the theater with Noah Foster. Kieran Wilcox shows up as well. Stavo Acosta appears outside the door, saying that he got a text from Brooke telling him to meet her here. Brooke says she sent no such text, and Stavo looks pretty suspicious. Noah refuses to let him into the theater. Frustrated, Stavo leaves. As the rest of the group scope out the theater, a movie projector comes on in one of the screening rooms. It contains images of the murders of Jake Fitzgerald and Zoe Vaughn. It is clear now that the killer is in the theater with them. Everyone splits up to find whoever is doing this and Emma goes up to the projector booth to shut off the film. The killer appears and stabs Brooke Maddox in the stomach, doling out a serious injury. Emma races down and shoots at him with the gun she recovered from the deputy, but misses. The killer disappears into the shadow. Audrey Jensen is nowhere to be found. The police arrive and Brooke is taken to the hospital.

Noah then shows the evidence against Eli on Acosta's phone, pointing out that Eli could have been Piper's accomplice. Emma receives a video of Audrey unconscious at the Blessed Sisters Children's Home, with a message from the killer demanding that she come alone or else he will kill her. Emma goes to the orphanage where she finds Audrey tied to a chair. The killer then calls and attacks Emma, slashing her arm, but retreats when she shoots at him again.

Kieran arrives to help, with an injured Eli coming in shortly afterward. Eli claims that Kieran is the killer and that he stabbed him, so he played dead and called the police. To get Emma to trust him, he reveals the incident in Atlanta was Kieran's fault. This led to Eli coming to Will's funeral as payback. When Eli tries to stab Kieran, Emma then shoots Eli in the stomach, severely incapacitating him.

Nope. Kieran doesn't look guilty at all, does he?

Emma wakes up Audrey and becomes suspicious of Kieran when he repeats a quote the killer said to her on the phone. Emma says "Oh, my God its you. No you couldn't be. Kieran, tell me that I am wrong". Kieran then smiles sadistically and says "You're not wrong" and shoots Eli dead when he tries to get back up, which finally confirms that he is the killer. A psychotic Kieran confesses that he was with Piper Shaw before meeting Emma and that they both hated the affair their parents had. Kieran fell in love with Piper and his "feelings" for Emma were all a ruse so that she would trust him. He details his plan to frame and Audrey and Emma as the killers. Before he can kill them, Audrey distracts Kieran by pushing the chair she was tied to making him fall long enough for Emma to run off.

Kieran drags Audrey out of the room at gunpoint and uses her as a hostage to lure Emma out. They play a game of hide and seek throughout the Orphanage. Kieran sees Emma through a shelf and Emma pushes the shelf on top of Kieran causing him to drop the gun. Emma picks up the gun and shoots at Kieran, missing. Audrey subdues Kieran with her chain and Emma holds him at gunpoint. Emma decides to keep Kieran alive for him to rot in prison. The police then arrive and arrest Kieran.

Cast[edit | edit source]

Principal Cast[edit | edit source]

Guest Starring[edit | edit source]

Co-Starring[edit | edit source]

Crew[edit | edit source]

Notes[edit | edit source]

  • This episode is rated TV-14.
  • This episode has been made available on MTV.com.
  • This episode had a viewership of 341,000 people, which is 7,000 less than the previous episode.

Trivia[edit | edit source]

  • This is the first time in the Scream franchise, that a Ghostface killer is not killed at the climax of the story. Instead, he is taken to prison.
  • Deputy Stevens death is actually foreshadowed in this episode in an interesting way. His squad car number is 187. This number is also the California penal code describing a murder.

Allusions[edit | edit source]

  • The title of this episode is taken from the 1979 mystery thriller When a Stranger Calls, which was directed by Fred Walton and produced by Columbia Pictures. It was released theatrically in the United States on October 26th, 1979. The film stars Carol Kane as Jill Johnson, a babysitter who has the misfortune of becoming the target of a serial killer. This follows the tradition of season two of naming episodes after famous horror and/or psycho-thriller films.
  • When a Stranger Calls is also a movie being screened at the Zenith Theater. It is listed on the marquis.
  • The final three-way showdown between Kieran, Emma and Eli echoes the climax of the first Scream between Sidney Prescott, Billy Loomis and Stu Macher.

Body Count[edit | edit source]

Aftermath[edit | edit source]

  • In an aftermath, Ms. Lang writes a story, Noah Foster narrates a monologue, Brooke lives with Gustavo and Acosta, Emma and Audrey go to a movie and Kieran goes to prison. Also, Maggie Duval finds the note she left for Brandon James with blood on it and a knife pinning it to the tree. The episode ends with Kieran Wilcox receiving a call from someone with the killer's voice, saying "Hello Kieran. Who told you, you could wear my mask?" much to Kieran's clear surprise.

Unanswered questions[edit | edit source]

As this is the season finale, there still remains several unanswered questions relating to information from previous episodes.

  • Who telephones Kieran Wilcox at the end of the episode? Could it be Brandon James, or perhaps his elusive never-before-seen brother, Troy James.
  • Is there a second accomplice? Noah Foster suggests as much early in the episode. If so, who?
  • Who set the fire at Wren Lake Estates in "Let the Right One In"? Evidence seems to suggest that it might have been Tina Hudson. Tina had some secret deal going on with Quinn Maddox, which was never clearly identified.
  • Where was Zoe Vaughn during the first killing spree in October, 2015? She made it clear to Noah Foster that she wasn't around, but was reluctant to reveal why. This may never be answered.
  • Soooo, Eli Hudson apparently came to Lakewood the previous October and attended Will Belmont's funeral as part of some scheme to get revenge on Kieran? That doesn't make a lot of sense. Now that Eli's dead, there probably won't be any clarification on this.
  • If Kieran is the killer, why go through all the excessive work to cut off Seth Branson's hand, bring his body to the school, ransack Kristin Lang's office, and then torment her with the hand? This seems like a lot of extra effort involving characters who have little to do with Piper Shaw.
  • Who placed the "Leave her alone" note in the tree for Maggie Duval to find? Is this the same person who called Kieran in prison?

Quotes[edit | edit source]

  • Kristin Lang: It's called "folie a deaux", or, "the madness of two". It's a psychological syndrome in which one deranged person transmits a delusion to another, creating a shared psychosis that's stronger than what one could've developed alone. The second person can help push the first over the edge, and that can result in a psychotic break.
  • Miguel Acosta: So you really think Emma and Audrey could be suffering from this "madness of two"?
  • Kristin Lang: Seeing the news and the videos they posted online, it suddenly all made sense. I believe they can't move past their trauma, so they just keep replaying it. They may not even be aware of what they're doing.


  • Ghostface: Oh, you must feel like a star. Everybody wants a piece of you.
  • Emma Duval: [To Audrey] Look outside. Look! [To the killer] I know you let us out of there for a reason.
  • Ghostface: I want to keep playing. So if you turn yourselves in, or even get caught, I'm going to gut someone you love. Better start running.


  • Brooke Maddox: They're at the theater. They want us to stay here.
  • Noah Foster: And let them go through all of this alone?
  • Brooke Maddox: Hell no.
  • Noah Foster: Okay. Okay, let's go. [Gets up out of hospital bed] Actually... I'm gonna need some pants.


  • Miguel Acosta: Has she ever told you about her nightmares?
  • Maggie Duval: How... how do you know about those?
  • Miguel Acosta: We found a journal last night. Emma's handwriting. She wrote about the barn where we found the mayor. She wrote about killing her friends. Maybe she doesn't even know its real.
  • Maggie Duval: Those are just dreams! Emma is not a murderer!


  • Emma Duval: I'm at the movie theater. If you want me, come and get me!


  • Noah Foster: I think this is it. I think this is the big finale.
  • Brooke Maddox: Noah, please don't go all meta on me right now. I need you guarding this door with me.
  • Noah Foster: I'm just saying, if this were a movie, we'd be at the unmasking stage.


  • Noah Foster: Okay... okay, if Piper had an accomplice, maybe that accomplice found another accomplice. Maybe there are two killers again, working together. That really opens up the possibilities, if you think about it.


  • Ghostface: Who told you, you could wear my mask?

See also[edit | edit source]

External Links[edit | edit source]

References[edit | edit source]

  1. Credited, but does not appear in this episode.
Community content is available under CC-BY-SA unless otherwise noted.