FINAL GIRL explores the slasher flicks of the '70s and '80s...and all the other horror movies I feel like talking about, too. This is life on the EDGE, so beware yon spoilers!

Sep 1, 2009

"You're all going to die down here..."

Hold on to your pants, 'cause I've got some shocking news for you: someday, you're going to die. Don't worry- we all are...yes, even me (most likely). Now, this is not something we humans especially enjoy thinking about. In fact, it's only by ignoring our inevitable expiration dates that we can function on a day to day basis. In other words, it's good to have a touch of that "I'm fucking invincible!" attitude, lest you spend your days curled up in a corner alternately sobbing, fretting, and pondering the great beyond.

I'm not saying that one shouldn't reflect now and again, don't get me wrong. Isn't that why some of us watch horror films? To safely experience death? That's what people say, anyway, and maybe it's partially true. After all, it's good to be aware of The End, 'cause maybe that awareness will make you appreciate The Now. Isn't that what everyone always says after some sort of tragedy? "Wow, 10 zillion people died in that natural disaster halfway around the world. It really makes you think- I could die at any moment! I'm totally going to carpe fucking diem!" While the intentions may be honorable, however, folks tend to carpe fucking diem for a few days at a time max- then it's back to bitching about the weather, making fun of other people's clothes, not calling one's friends and family, playing "me first!" in the parking lot, staring at the TV, or spending hours writing on some horror blog. It's natural- if you actually lived every day as if it were your last, you'd probably be exhausted.

This is all an overly-effusive introduction to what's perhaps a banal question: What's the least pleasant type of horror movie death? Let's figure that out. See, it's almost fun to talk about death within the confines of fakery and fantasy, whereas the reality of death is, you know, a drag. To wit:
  • death by Ebola: possible, drag
  • death by zombies: most likely impossible, fun
Incidentally, I think that being torn asunder by zombies whilst alive would really really suck, and that's what gets my vote for the worst. Weigh in with your votes in the comments, and then go for a walk.



timothy grant said...

I would have to vote for the wood splinter in the eye trick from Zombi 2 ... genius...

Anonymous said...

The hanging from a hook and having your rib cage ripped open from either side while still alive a la Saw III.

BookGeekGrrl said...

Having your eyes drilled out by Moonface in "Incident On and Off a Mountain Road".

ChoppedNuts said...

I've got to go with ye olde standby - death by fire.

Craig Blamer said...

Being digested alive by The Blob. I know, that was never made overt but it was implied.

Or the real-life equivalent... being married for forty years to Ann Coulter.

Ashlee Blackwell said...

Oh, I remember the first time I saw that one. What's another word for cringe...? Having a phantom moment of displacement where I was feeling my own skin being ripped open by cannibalistic zombies, who are only looking to feel alive again, right?

This is easy: Jason Takes Manhattan shakin' and a chokin' til you stop fightin'. Probably the slowest, scariest, and most painful way to die in a slasher. The fixation with heads cracks me up as much as I find it disturbing. And it seems to mainly be Jason. The bulging of eyes, twisting a head off like a bottle cap, and, the strap a belt around a dude's eyes and squeeze.


I need to take my hands away from the keyboard for a second to make sure my head and eyes are still intact.

Alec Pridgen said...

How about the girl who had all of her fingernails ripped out before being stabbed to death in "Beyond the Darkness?" How about the guy who was eaten to death by tiny crabs in "Treasure of the Amazon."

For me, though, it has to be the lady who has to throw up all of her organs in "The Beyond."

Jason Adams said...

The Lust death in Seven.

Anonymous said...

Having your head shoved underwater and slowly drowing to death while being unable to lift up just enough to catch ones breath until you can't fight the inevitable.

Either that or slowly being eaten alive by something like that weird demon in Buffy season 7 that was peeling a layer of skin off of Willow strip by strip when she was invisible.

Maybe death by kitten, just becuase of the embarassment facotr.

The Portland Review said...

Not technically death, but the fate that awaits Catherine Deneuves girlfriends and boyfriends in the Hunger has to take some kind of cake: glamour and sex for two hundred years or so, then eternity in a box.

Anonymous said...

Having my body change into a half-man, half-fly after travelling through a teleporter with the damned thing, all while being fully aware of my changes. Also, the disintegration part was bad.

BloodPepsi said...

Great suggestions so far!

I vote for all of the above, and throw "having your head dunked into a physical therapy hot tub at scalding temperatures; alternately drowning and being burned", from Halloween 2, into the ring.
You know.. er...the first one.


johnalanhall said...

The worst death for a man--have "below the belt surgery" and then bleeding to death.

The worst death for a (long-haired) woman--scalped alive, then strangled with her own hair.

A freaky yet cathartic question.