Queer Horror

A Film Guide

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About the Book

From the beginning, horror has been part of the cinema landscape. Despite some of the earliest genre films with gay directors such as F.W. Murnau (Nosferatu) and James Whale (Frankenstein, The Invisible Man, Bride of Frankenstein), LGBTQIA characters have rarely been portrayed in full view. For decades, filmmakers have included “coded” content in their films with the homosexual experience translated into censor-friendly subtext for consumption by general audiences. Gradually, LGBTQIA characters and themes have moved from the background to the foreground as the horror genre has grown along with its audience’s tastes and attitudes. Likewise, more and more LGBTQIA writers and directors have begun to offer their queer-centric takes on scary movies and today, “queer horror” is a thriving film genre.
With more than 900 entries, this critical filmography is a comprehensive, critical, yet playful examination of the history of LGBTQIA content in horror films. Eight journalistic contributors dig into every era of scary movies, including the early silents, pre– and post–Hays Code content, grindhouse sleaze, LGBTQIA indies, and megaplex studio releases. From Whale’s The Old Dark House (1932) to Don Mancini’s Chucky films and everything in between, this collection explores what can be found at the intersection of “LGBTQIA” and “horror” in the film industry.

About the Author(s)

Sean Abley is a Los Angeles–based award-winning playwright, journalist, screenwriter and author. His work has appeared in Fangoria, The Advocate, Attitude, Men’s Health, and Unzipped. His Gay of the Dead blog at Fangoria.com was one of the first gay horror blogs, debuting in 2009, and he created the “Queer Horror” panel at San Diego Comic-Con in 2014.

Tyler Doupé works as the managing editor at Wicked Horror and as a staff writer at Dread Central. Based in Portland, Oregon, his work has also been featured in Fangoria, Rue Morgue, Scream: The Horror Magazine, The Fandango Movie Blog, SyFy Wire, ComingSoon.Net, and more.

Bibliographic Details

Edited by Sean Abley and Tyler Doupé
Format: softcover (8.5 x 11)
Pages: 277
Bibliographic Info: ca. 225 photos, appendix, bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2023
pISBN: 978-1-4766-9027-8
eISBN: 978-1-4766-5151-4
Imprint: McFarland

Book Reviews & Awards

• A Library Journal Starred Review

• “The authors compile lively and insightful commentary from a collection of journalists who cover queer horror. Though full of gay zombies, lesbian vampires, and transgender slashers, the book aims for a level of completion that includes calling out movies in which only incidental LGBTQIA+ characters exist. They also point out harmful tropes and stereotypes and address that what was once groundbreaking for earlier generations might be offensive today…. An essential reference guide with engaging writing that shines. This is an exhaustive and valuable encyclopedia of the hits and misses of queer horror cinema. Genre fans will find plenty of titles to add to their watchlist.”—Library Journal