By Clark Collis
July 20, 2018 at 09:16 PM EDT
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Was anyone who attended the Halloween panel at Comic-Con’s Hall H on Friday afternoon laboring under the misapprehension that this horror sequel from director David Gordon Green (Pineapple Express) and co-writer Danny McBride (Eastbound & Down) is a comedy? If so, that opinion would have been very much corrected with the scene screened from Green’s direct follow-up to John Carpenter’s 1978 horror film. In the footage, iconic masked killer Michael Myers moves from one suburban house to another doing what he does best — murder people — with first a hammer and then his more usual implement of mayhem, a large kitchen knife. We won’t spoil the scene further, except to say that jokes were notably absent from the material.

At the start of the panel, the film’s star Jamie Lee Curtis spoke about her character Laurie Strode, who in the movie faces off against Myers 40 years after being terrorized by him in Carpenter’s original, and suggested the one-time babysitter was very much a heroine for the #MeToo era.

“Laurie Strode was 17 years old when she was brutally attacked by Michael Myers, a random act of violence that stayed with her [for] her entire life,” said the actress, who was joined onstage by director Green and producers Jason Blum and Malek Akkad. “She was raised in the Midwest, I’m sure they sent her back to school two days later. And yet, she has carried the trauma and PTSD of someone who was attacked randomly… There comes a point where you say, I am not my trauma, the narrative of my life is not that I am a victim. And this is a woman who has been waiting 40 years to face the person who she knows is coming back, to say, ‘I am going to take back the legacy of my life, I am going to take back my narrative, and you don’t own me anymore.’ And that, weirdly enough, seems to be a bit of a thing in the world today.”

During the panel’s Q&A portion, Curtis left the stage to embrace and kiss a male questioner who claimed that Carpenter’s original Halloween inspired him to survive an incident in which he was menaced by a man with a knife.

The new Halloween will be released Oct. 19. Watch the trailer for the film above.

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