If you identify as a queer person, you know that you’re (generally) willing to suffer through a lot of really (REALLY) poorly written/made movies and TV shows if there is even so much as a hint of queer character/storyline. When it comes to female-driven plots, Amanda Holland has an entire YouTube channel that is more or less devoted to reviewing bad (sometimes good, but mostly bad) sapphic movies, so IT IS A REAL PHENOMENON. I generally try to highlight the good stuff for you here on BYT (example one, example two), and seeing as it’s Halloween, I thought I could devote a round-up to seasonally-appropriate SPOOKTOWN VIBES! Most of the below movies and TV shows satiate the need for queer creepiness and suspense in an A+ way. Some…well, some don’t, but I felt the need to include them for reasons which will be explained. That said, this list is NOT exhaustive, and if you have additions please let me know in the comments! HERE WE GO:
Genuinely cannot say enough good things about this movie. To quote myself, “It is like Carrie, but Norwegian and gay. (So, best case scenario.) I know the whole coming out story thing tends to be overdone, but pairing that experience with supernatural abilities (SPOILER ALERT: at one point Thelma uses psychic powers to light her Christian conservative dad on fire and I think that’s p. tight!) is like, kind of extremely ideal. Some great make-outs, too, which is why we are all really here, isn’t it?” (Also, fun fact, I went to a variety show at C’mon Everybody here in NYC a few weeks ago and Okay Kaya aka Kaya Wilkins aka Anja in the movie showed up to perform at the same time I showed up to spectate, and that felt v. surreal!)
Carmilla: The Movie
Sorry not sorry that I have found Natasha Negovanlis and Elise Bauman’s on-screen chemistry to be THE MOST CHARMING OF ALL TIME, YOU GUYS. The Carmilla story is by no means new (shout-out to the 1871 novella that started it all), but this particular take (which initially began as a web series) is especially endearing. If you want vampire spooks without like, SPOOKS-SPOOKS, then this is a solid choice.
Apparently there’s nowhere legitimate to buy or stream this in a way that generates income for the creators, but there is this…so…just saying…
This movie is real fucking gross but also real fucking queer so like, it kind of all balances out in the end? It’s probably THE MOST extreme example of lesbians lesbianing in spooky ways, and while it genuinely might make you want to vomit at certain points, it’s also weirdly heartwarming? Wow, please send help!
Stream it for free (LOL, “for free”) on Netflix!
Welcome to Rosemary’s Baby but real queer! Very here for the performances given by Gaby Hoffmann and Ingrid Jungermann // definitely feel you should watch, unless you’re pregnant and/or have kids, in which case…maybe do not for the purposes of paranoia.
Watch on Amazon Prime, or if you’re not a Prime member, rent it for $1.99.
What Keeps You Alive
If it’s a good old fashioned thriller you’re after, then this one o’ your best bets! (Probably don’t watch if you’re engaged to be married, ’cause it might make you feel a little spooky about your soon-to-be-wife!)
It’s a bit of a pricey view at $12.99 for an SD purchase on YouTube, but you can watch it for free on Amazon Prime if you grab a free trial of Showtime // potentially worth it IMO!
Yeah, we gotta cram some David Lynch vibes in here (IT IS HALLOWEEN, AFTER ALL), and yeah, it’s gotta be Mulholland Drive. I feel like most people have (theoretically) already seen this, but if you haven’t, just know that you will either love it or hate it. (You will 100% feel confused either way.) I am personally a real big fan of the “Llorando” scene // WOW WHAT A GOOD STRANGE THING! But also, Laura Elena Harring and Naomi Watts making out is a pretty great time, so…watch it, basically!
Can be seen from $3.99 on YouTube.
Jack & Diane
ALRIGHT! ALRIGHT! Hear me out on this one! It’s like, kind of not a great movie story-wise, but hell yes dot com I will watch Riley Keough be 1. a werewolf/monster and 2. in a relationship with Juno Temple!
You can rent it in SD for $2.99 on YouTube ($3.99 for HD), or if you’ve got Amazon Prime, you can watch it for free w/ a 7-day trial of Monsters and Nightmares.
Honorable Mention…Jennifer’s Body
In case you were unaware, we super owe an apology to Jennifer’s Body, y’all. I mean, maybe some of you were woke enough at the time to realize how fucking great of a film it is, but for me, personally, I remember thinking it was garbage upon first watch, and have only recently come to realize its epicness. Granted, Amanda Seyfried and Megan Fox aren’t exactly in a romantic relationship together during the film, but I’m mentioning it here for 1. the obvious (real great, IMO) makeout scene and 2. MAJOR FEMINIST VIBES.
Rent it from YouTube starting at $3.99.
TV SERIES! (A very much non-exhaustive list, but also a start! Also I did not include Buffy because everyone already knows!)
Les Revenants / The Returned
This show is so good, I CANNOT. They tried to do a US version, but it was total garbage in comparison. I did a full(er) explanation here, so check that out, but the gist is that a bunch of dead people come back to life in a secluded mountain town in France, and none of them have aged a day since being buried. They’re not zombies out for brains (although they ARE very hungry for actual food), but loads of weird shit starts happening in the town, and it’s the best (and most classic) combo of French sexy-meets-spooky-mysterious. It’s not an explicitly queer show, but it does have a queer main character, and we do get to see her hookin’ up with a lady cop, so…overall just an added bonus to an already-really-great series.
And it’s all available to stream on Netflix, huzzah!
This is absolutely one of my favorite series at the moment! (You can also read this interview I did with Julio Torres and Ana Fabrega recently // wow wow wow shameless self promo // you love to see it!) The show in and of itself is delightfully weird, and for me it’d be worth watching regardless of the queer factor. But it is VERY QUEER, which makes me VERY HAPPY! I only expected Julio Torres’ character to be at the center of the queer lens (he and co-creator Ana Fabrega, who semi-ironically plays straight in the show, are both queer IRL), but Cassandra Ciangherotti’s character (Úrsula) is pleasantly surprisingly queer! Hooray for all of it // an incredibly appropriate Halloween watch!
(Watch it on HBO, duh!)
The Haunting of Hill House
This was easily one of my favorite things I watched in 2018, and I spent a very long time talking to my therapist about it since it’s like, the greatest metaphor for emotional trauma of all time. It’s also queer! Not explicitly so, but Theo’s character (I am definitely a Theo) is super queer, making it EXTRA worth an already-worthwhile watch. Majorly spooky at the start (IMO), majorly sad (IMO) in the second half, so get the tissues ready!
Stream it on Netflix!
Okay, this show has (admittedly) a V. SMALL proportion of queerness in comparison to most other things I have (and will) mention here, but there IS a queer female relationship that happens in the first and second season, which is the cherry on top to an already INCREDIBLY GREAT German show. If you’re not watching it, you’re fuckin’ up. Time travel! SP00PS! ALL OF THE GOOD THINGS!
Currently available to stream on Netflix.
American Horror Story
Kind of a no-brainer here, but SO MANY QUEER VIBES. Especially any/all Sarah Paulson characters, especially in Cult, so go ahead and stream all of that on Netflix IF YOU DARE.
If CW teen drama brain-meltin’ times are more your speed, then you probably need to watch Legacies! There are witches ‘n werewolves ‘n vampires, and there’s a p. solid love-hate queer storyline between Josie and Penelope. So.
Stream it all on Netflix, or like, just watch supercuts of all #POSIE scenes on YouTube:
A similarly lighthearted aka brain-meltin’ aka not super terrifying but still Halloween-appropriate supernatural binge is Wynonna Earp! The Canadian show has a major cult following (thanks in no small part to the #WAYHAUGHT camp comprised of Nicole Haught and Waverly Earp shippers), and while it’s a little bit cheesy, if you’re up for a fairly mindless and v. pure queer time, it’s a solid bet.
Streamable on Netflix, or just do what I suggested before and house the YouTube supercuts:
What’d I forget to mention?! TELL ME NOW!!! (And HAPPY HALLOWEEN!)