Jason Voorhees and his mother, Pamela, have gained popularity since their first appearance in Friday the 13th (1980), but they aren't the only members of the Voorhees extended family in the franchise's canon.
The Friday the 13th franchise has been a success since its debut in 1980, spawning a horror series that has grown to encompass twelve slasher films and a TV series, along with several novels and comic books. Pamela Voorhees shows up as the killer in the original Friday the 13th, while her son, Jason, takes over as the role of the killer in subsequent movies. Though, he does first appear as the disfigured child attacking Alice’s canoe at the very end of Friday the 13th.
While Jason and Pamela are the most well-known members of the Voorhees family, other family members have been introduced through both the films and other entries outside of the movie canon. Their inclusion has, at times, made the movie timeline more confusing, and sparked questions about the Voorhees family that haven't been resolved. That said, Jason's extended family adds a richness to the relatively simplistic franchise by providing a greater depth to the hockey-masked killer's backstory.
The Voorhees Family in Movie Canon
In Friday the 13th, Pamela Voorhees reveals herself to Alice as the mother of a boy who drowned due to the camp counselors’ negligence many years ago at Camp Crystal Lake. While Pamela only appears directly in the first film, she serves as a secondary antagonist driving Jason’s actions through the rest of the franchise.
While Jason Voorhees first shows up at the very end of Friday the 13th attacking Alice’s canoe, his breakout role is in Friday the 13th Part 2 where he serves as the main villain for the first time. Jason shows up as the principal antagonist in the rest of the films though the Friday the 13th series, killing campers and getting revenge for his mother’s death as well as what happened to him as a child.
Most people consider Pamela and Jason to be the only two members of the Voorhees family—at least the ones who matter, in terms of the story. In Jason Goes to Hell: The Final Friday, a new branch of the family tree is introduced through Diana Kimble. Diana is Jason’s half-sister, having been born from an affair between Jason’s father and an unknown woman. She’s introduced in the film as she learns that her brother can be brought back from the dead by inhabiting the body of a living relative, should his body be destroyed.
Diana is soon killed and her daughter, Jessica Kimble, is left to put together the pieces. First believing that her ex-boyfriend killed Diana, Creighton Duke eventually convinces her of the danger that she and her infant daughter, Stephanie Kimble, are in. This reveals their familial ties to Jason Voorhees.
The Voorhees Family in Extended Canon
In addition to the canon universe of the films, several comic books and novels add to the Friday the 13th universe by expanding on the characters and the world. The first introduction that the novels make is Jason’s father, Elias Voorhees, in Friday the 13th Part VI: Jason Lives Novelization. He also appears in the comic books Jason vs Leatherface and Friday the 13th: Pamela’s Tale. In most of these depictions, he appears as a large, abusive man who hated his disabled son and ultimately left the family.
In the novel Jason X: Death Moon, another member of the extended Voorhees family appears in the form of a 17th century warlock from Salem, Massachusetts known as Jebediah Voorhees. Allegedly, this distant relative of Jason once possessed the Necronomicon, which has since been passed down through the family line.
The final member of the Voorhees family was introduced in Jason X: Planet of the Beast and Jason X: Death Moon. When geneticist Claude Bardox impregnates fellow geneticist Sarah London Jefferson with Jason Voorhees’ DNA, she gives birth to a son named Free Jefferson. Free Jefferson as a character is expanded upon in the novel Jason X: To The Third Power in which he learns of his lineage and stops Jason’s escape from containment on their space station by launching him into space. Free becomes the last living member of the Voorhees family in Friday the 13th canon.