Lesbian horror movie villains: From vampires to psychos
It would seem like horror movies want to link lesbianism with sexy women vampires trying to put the bite on other women, or as psycho killers that are man-haters.
Lesbian horror movie villains: Vampires
With regard to seductive female vampires, we could put the blame on Joseph Sheridan Le Fanu’s classic horror novella Carmilla, which was first published in 1872.
The book made the jump to celluloid with the 1936 movie Dracula’s Daughter— a sequel to Bela Lugosi’s 1931 movie Dracula— which had a countess vampire who seduced young women.
With this first female vampire picking on other women, others followed suit in movies.
These range from the 1983 flick The Hunger (starring Catherine Deneuve, Susan Sarandon, and David Bowie!) to B-movies like Jesús Franco’s 1971 West German-Spanish horror film Vampyros Lesbos.
Sara Century of BitchMedia writes: “The predominant image of queer women in horror much of the 20th century was the lesbian vampire. There are a great deal more lesbian vampire movies than pretty much any other kind of queer movie.”
“Calling these films ‘queer’ is, of course, dicey territory, considering the fact that they were almost exclusively created by straight people with straight audiences in mind, but the story has appeared again and again,” Sara notes.
Lesbian horror movie villains: Psychos
The female vampire trope becomes problematic, Sara added, because this trope has evolved into seductive lesbians that want to turn straight girls bad by becoming seriously violent.
For example, there is the 2003 French flick Haute Tension (High Tension) as well as Jennifer’s Body starring Megan Fox in 2009 as a demon-possessed girl who wants to kiss Amanda Seyfried.
Movies have a certainly bloody way of representing women who love women.
On one side of the coin, we have the thrillers and crime dramas like Heavenly Creatures (1994) and Monster (2003), wherein lesbians have blood on their hands.
On the other side of the coin, we have the depiction of strong women who have female relationships with Sapphic overtones.
For example, there’s Sigourney Weaver and Winona Ryder in the sci-fic flick Alien: Resurrection (1997) and Sarah and Juno in the horror movie The Descent (2005).
Categorizing lesbian horror movie villains
As a gay horror movie reviewer, midnightmoviegay writes in his post Bad Lesbians: “From questionable noir femme fatales to unattainable lesbians and bisexual lolitas, openly queer female characters have almost always been easier to have on screen than queer male characters. More acceptable, if you will.”
“And while you may say this is a good thing, a championing of character diversity, it can honestly be bad when you take into account how the character– and in the grand design of cinema, all similar characters– are depicted,” he notes.
He further points out that: “Much more often than not, the lesbian/bi character in horror/genre films is depicted as such in one of three cliche tropes. 1) She’s aggressively sex driven – desiring women but willing to sleep with men to further her agenda. 2) She’s batshit crazy – clingy, sociopathic, unstable, obsessive, delusional, or at least very socially awkward. Or 3) She’s a batshit crazy sex kitten – an object to be desired and feared.”
What do you think? Found any good horror movies lately that depict us lesbians in a better light?