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Scream: Who Killed Tatum (Billy or Stu)? | Screen Rant

Many characters fell victim to Ghostface in Wes Craven’s Scream, among those Tatum Riley (Rose McGowan), Sidney’s best friend – but who was the one responsible for her death? The horror genre has gone through a rollercoaster when it comes to its successes and failures, and the 1990s are generally considered a weak decade. However, there are a couple of movies that kept the genre afloat, and the most notable one is Scream. This movie in particular stood out for its satirization of horror clichés and meta-commentary and is credited as the one that revitalized the horror genre in the 1990s.

Scream followed Sidney Prescott (Neve Campbell), a high school student who became the target of a mysterious masked killer known as Ghostface. In order to cause as much damage as possible, the killer also went after those closest to Sidney, and her best friend Tatum became one of Ghostface’s victims. In the final act of Scream, it’s revealed that there were actually two people responsible for the murders, and they had a very elaborate plan to get rid of Sidney. These killers were Sidney’s boyfriend Billy Loomis (Skeet Ulrich) and his friend and Tatum’s boyfriend Stu Macher (Matthew Lillard), raising the question of who killed Tatum.

Related: Scream: Ghostface Killer's REAL Secret Name Revealed

Out of all the people killed by Ghostface in Scream, the one behind Tatum’s brutal death is a mystery that fans have been debating for years. In the third act of the movie, Stu throws a party for everyone who wants to attend, and among those are Sidney, Tatum, Billy, and Randy Meeks (Jamie Kennedy). At one point, Tatum leaves the group to get more beers from the garage, and there she comes across Ghostface. At first skeptical, Tatum begins to tease the killer, but it soon becomes clear that it’s no joke and she’s in danger. Tatum tries to escape but to no success, getting stuck in the cat flap of the garage door as she couldn’t get the door to start – but Ghostface did, killing her in a very brutal and graphic way. With both Billy and Stu at the party or near the house, who could have killed Tatum?

Fans seem to be divided, but there seems to be more conversation about Billy being the one who killed Tatum, merely based on the timing of the events and his “sudden and unexpected” arrival after it. Billy wasn’t at the party before Tatum’s murder, and he arrived right after she was killed, just as everyone else was leaving. Some fans have even pointed out his facial expression when he arrives at Stu’s house, as he lifted his eyebrows up to Stu a couple of times as if telling him that the job was done. On the other hand, there are enough arguments to believe that it was actually Stu who killed Tatum. First off, the rest of the attendees were distracted by the arrival of Gale Weathers with Dewey, allowing Stu to put on the costume and go after his girlfriend. Other clues are that Ghostface came from inside the house and went back inside after killing Tatum, his height and body language match those of Stu, and he could get the door to start with no problem. In addition to that, the first victim in Scream, Casey Becker (Drew Barrymore), was Stu’s ex-girlfriend, so it wouldn’t be surprising if he killed his current girlfriend too.

As to why Tatum had to be killed in Scream, it was most likely to keep Sidney in the house, as she had been staying with Tatum and Dewey and she was seen calling for her so they could leave seconds before Billy arrived. Her death was also used by Stu to manipulate Sidney, as he blamed Randy for it so he could earn her trust even if just for a moment. As mentioned above, Scream fans are divided when it comes to deciding who killed Tatum, and is up to every viewer to decide depending on their perspective of the events, but that scene was surely made intentionally ambiguous to keep the audience wondering who was the killer.

Next: Every Person Who Played Ghostface In Scream

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