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Ever since Psycho (1960), the portrayal of women in the modern horror film has been the subject of much criticism. Either horror heroines are represented as virginal heroines who survive because of their ‘masculine’ qualities, or else they are reduced to the role of passive victims whose sexual desires effectively seal their fate.

But is that all there is? The contemporary horror film, very much aware about what has been written about it, seems to be taking the critics to task by challenging this reductive split in female representations. In particular, by emphasising the explosive expression of repressed female rage, the Ginger Snaps trilogy has re-written the rules of what the contemporary horror film can offer women. Rather than relying on standard depictions of virgins or victims, the series uses horror motifs to explore more complex issues that surround female sexuality. This has lead many reviewers to argue that the Ginger Snaps films contain feminist and even lesbian subtexts, while its images have even provoked audience research projects that consider the gender patterns within this fright franchise.

To investigate the issue role of women in monster movies further, Sci-fi London will be holding a special panel discussion entitled Contemporary Horror Heroines: The Ginger Snaps Trilogy and its Audience. The event is chaired by Dr Ernest Mathijs (one of the leading researchers at Centre for Audience Research at the University of Wales, Aberystwyth) and includes an exclusive screening of the documentary Menstrual Monsters: The Ginger Snaps Trilogy as well as a discussion around female representations in a range of contemporary horror films.

Panel members for this unique event will include:
Emily Perkins (star of the Ginger Snaps trilogy)
Xavier Mendik (presenter/producer of the documentary Menstrual Monsters: The Ginger Snaps Trilogy)
Howard Martin
(producer Menstrual Monsters: The Ginger Snaps Trilogy).
Dr Ernest Mathijs - will chair the event

There will also be a screenings of Ginger Snaps as part of this unique event.

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