Names of 18th-century beauty patches

Beauty marks had names! And I find them hilarious.

Please, enjoy.

So, you’ve seen a lot of horror movies. How would you break down the elements of a horror movie? Thinks like the different kinds of subgenres (slasher, psychological, gore, etc.), different types of scares, the different levels of special effects, and such. I’m not much of a horror movie watcher, so I don’t have enough of a background to build up this categorization. The last horror movie I saw was Event Horizon sometime in 2013/2014, and I was a bit squeamish during the later half of it.


Oh, gosh.  That’s a toughie, since there are so many different types of horror films out there, and lots of mini subgenres.  For the most part, I think they fall into five main categories:

  • Slasher (human vs human):  A slasher like Freddy Krueger pushes the boundaries of the genre by adding a supernatural element, but in the end, the focus is on the body count, and Freddy began life as a human.  The same applies to Jason Voorhees.  Peripherally included in the slasher genre are the Italian giallo (a precursor to the modern slasher), and the German krimi.  These are murder mysteries of a very specific tone (I covered the giallo previously here).  The krimi is essentially a German giallo.  The slasher genre is not restricted just to a single killer, but can include multiple killers (such as in Last House on the Left).  Slashers also include killer kids, though killer babies tend to fall into either the Physical or Creature Feature designations due to the fact that there has to be an unnatural force at work for a baby to successfully become a threat.
  • Supernatural (paranormal or religious):  Ghosts, religion, magic, witches, the occult, demons, and possession, for the most part.  Depending on the tone and handling, vampires are typically found here, though there are vampire films that defy this classification (such as Near Dark).  Gothic horror is most often found under this category.
  • Psychological (horrors of the mind):  Extreme psychological stress and psychosis.  Mind games, delusions–basically an attack from one’s own psyche, or someone trying to induce psychosis in another.  Often includes amnesia.
  • Physical (horrors of the body):  Anything that transforms the human body in an unnatural way.  This includes viruses, extreme surgeries (Tusk; American Mary), scientific experimentation not too distanced from reality (Re-Animator), “melt movies” (Slime City; Street Trash), mutations (From Beyond), and extreme physical torture (Grotesque; Flower of Flesh and Blood).  Zombies are typically represented by this category, but may also be considered a genre of their own due to other interpretations (see below).  This is also the genre that cannibal films call home.  While the conflict is human, cannibal films are not slasher films due to the obvious taboo.  There are slashers that also consumed their victims, but the designation depends mostly on tone and setting (the most popular Italian cannibal films are set in exotic locales), or the emphasis on the cannibalism (a film like Feed would absolutely be considered physical horror).  When it comes to mutations, if they veer too far away from human, they then fall under the category of:
  • Creature Feature (non-human adversaries).  This includes animals (of the “nature gone awry” trope), monsters (werewolves, and other creatures of folklore), aliens, giants, and occasionally kaiju.  Human/creature hybrids (The Fly; Creature) also belong here.

Due to their overwhelming popularity, zombie movies may be considered their own category.  While the conflict is human at its roots, zombies usually don’t retain enough faculties to be placed on the same level as slashers, and the greatest threat comes from their numbers.  Many of them fall into the category of physical horror as well, but others (like White Zombie) are more cultural in nature, thus necessitating a distinction of its own.

Then there are the subgenres that cross over with other genres of film in general:

  • Science-fiction horror:  Ridley Scott’s Alien is an excellent example of this.  It’s sci-fi, but scary.
  • Fantasy horror:  These are most often based on, or reminiscent of, well-known fairy tales, or feature fairy tale elements.  Troll is an excellent example of this.
  • Horror comedy:  Humor plays a large part, whether in visual slapstick (Evil Dead II; Dead Alive), comical characters, or intentional camp/cheese (Killer Klowns from Outer Space).
  • Horror anthology:  Multiple stories within the same film.  Examples include Creepshow, The ABC’s of Death, and Kwaidan.
  • Horror romance:  A somewhat rare category.  Includes films such as A Chinese Ghost Story, Warm Bodies, and Let the Right One In.
  • Erotic horror:  Horror with a strong emphasis on sexual content.  Jesus “Jess” Franco was well-known for this particular style.  Quite a lot of vampire films featuring lesbianism can be found here, including Daughters of Darkness.
  • Thriller:  Thrillers–while a category of their own–can bear much resemblance to horror.  Giallo and krimi may often be considered thrillers as well.  These tend to encompass murder mysteries, but the level of violence and a tense enough atmosphere can easily make a thriller qualify as horror.

Troma movies, also, may be considered in a category of their own due to
(deliberately) not fitting into only one–or even two–categories at a

All of these categories branch off into numerous subsets.  There are a few designations in particular that can apply across nearly any of these genres.

  • Splatter:  Splatter refers specifically to the level of explicit gore, and disregards all other plot aspects.  As long as it contains an absurd amount of grue, it can be classified as splatter.  Psychological horror can contain splatter in the form of physical horror manifesting only in the mind, such as in a film like Jacob’s Ladder (though even so, it doesn’t meet the high level of gore required to make it splatter).
  • Exploitation/Grindhouse:  What makes a film exploitation depends on the time period (late 60′s to early 80′s), independent production, lower budget, and most importantly–whether or not there is something to exploit (whether it be nudity, violence, gore, or taboos).  The films of Herschell Gordon Lewis, Ted V Mikels, and Roger Corman can often be found here.  The term “grindhouse” simply refers to the type of privately-owned theaters willing to play exploitation films.
  • Horror documentary/Mondo:  As the name implies, this can be a documentary about horror in general, specific subgenres, specific films/franchises, or “mondo” films.  The Faces of Death series is a good example of the mondo film:  An exploitation documentary covering taboo subjects (sex and death), traditions from foreign cultures (usually portrayed with an inherently ethnocentric lens), and staged sequences that are being touted as genuine.  The name originated from the film Mondo Cane.
  • Extreme:  This refers to those films that go so far beyond the boundaries of literally everything that they have become infamous.  This is usually due to outrageous subject matter, full frontal nudity, explicit sexuality, social taboos, and excessive levels of violence and gore.  Many films of this nature have seen themselves classified as “video nasties”, the director and crew taken to court for allegations of murder, or have been outright banned in multiple countries.  Examples include Nekromantik, A Serbian Film, The Men Behind the Sun, the Japanese Guinea Pig films, and the August Underground films.

There are also categories that have to do specifically with how the movie is filmed.

  • Found footage:  Films that are made to appear as though it is all amateur footage, typically belonging to protagonists that have “disappeared” since filming.  The footage is alleged to be the only thing remaining of the missing characters.  Beginning with Cannibal Holocaust, the genre saw a tremendous resurgence with the popularity of The Blair Witch Project, and is excellently executed in The Bay.
  • Shot-on-video:  Exactly as the name implies.  These are typically independent films shot on a shoestring budget, and shot either onto video tape, or digitally.  The majority were produced for the burgeoning home video market of the 80′s.  Because they are rarely (if ever) released theatrically, they are not obligated to remain within MPAA ratings, and thus often contain high levels of gore, taboo subject matter, and strictly no-name casts.  Very rarely, a high-profile film arises that was shot digitally, and thus transcends the SoV subgenre (28 Days Later is the best example of this).  Shot-on-video films tend to be highly unappreciated, but many are forgotten gems just waiting to be discovered.  Both the found footage and SoV genres came together (at least in spirit) in the V/H/S franchise.

The website Horror on Screen created this handy chart, though their classifications and terminology differ a bit from mine:


(Hi-res image can be found here)

The chart uses color to show where there is often crossover between categories.  The site also offers numerous examples of the various lesser categories. 

When it comes to scares/terror, there are really only four kinds:

  • Tension/Suspense:  This is the most valuable for a horror film, because this is what keeps the audience glued to their seats.
  • Jump Scares:  The cheapest of all scares, these rely on simply catching the viewer off-guard, and startling them.  Anything from a cat randomly landing on the hood of a car, to the killer coming back one last time to grab the heroine’s ankle as she attempts to flee.
  • Disturbing revelations:  Usually present in the solving of a mystery, or in an unexpected twist.  Examples include the discovery of previously-unknown parental lineage, and unveiling the murderer.
  • Sheer abject horror:  This can be the result of a disturbing revelation.  This is reserved mainly for extreme circumstances.  This is basically how I felt at the very last line of dialogue in A Serbian Film.  It’s that feeling where you’re internally screaming “NO” repeatedly at the screen.

When it comes to effects, the best time period for effects has to be the 80′s, as they were a time when on-set, practical effects were a major selling point of horror.  This is where masters like Tom Savini, Rob Bottin, and the KNB Effects crew carved out their niche.  Many newer horror films rely on a combination of practical and digital, and can blend them to marvelous effect (Slither does a good job of this…mostly).  Splatter films will likely showcase a lot of effects work to accomplish the gore, while non-animal creature features show off all manner of elaborate monsters.  Physical horror is the most intimate, as it deals with the human body exclusively, so it can often be the hardest to watch, and horror that merges closely with science fiction will likely include a cavalcade of intergalactic intruders.  Other subgenres, such as thrillers or milder supernatural horror (old-fashioned house hauntings, for example) may rely solely on suspense and sound design, and not feature much at all in the way of blood.  Other films are quite successful at suggesting a much higher level of blood and violence than they actually show (The Texas Chainsaw Massacre is the epitome of this).  When it comes to exploitation and shot-on-video horror, don’t expect miracles, but do marvel at what can still be accomplished on a low budget.  Ozone is a fantastic example of getting the best out of having little to work with.

That was all quite lengthy, but I hope it helps!

9 Sapphic book recs (that aren’t contemporary YA)


I used to complain about there not being enough bi or lesbian main female characters in books, until about a year ago when I realised there are a fuckload of f/f books out there and it would be almost impossible to read them all.

As a present to you, here’s some good ones:

Disclaimer: Some of these have explicit sex scenes, some do not. Some have happy endings, some have ambiguous or not happy endings.







“You can’t love someone else if you don’t love yourself first.”, I know plenty of people who deeply and romantically care about a person but don’t quite like themselves all too much. But what I find is that their relationships tend to be problematic. For example, they may settle for abusive relationships because they don’t think they’re deserving of more. Or they may take out their insecurities on their partner making it an unhealthy relationship.

EXACTLY. If you don’t love yourself, you won’t respect yourself enough to be in a good relationship because you don’t think you deserve it.

Or you think what you have is all anyone will ever be willing to give you.

A couple points I thought were important

  • ofcourse, this isn’t the case for every single person in the world. relationships are more complicated than that, but research has shown again and again how low self esteem effects relationships for the worse and also just the quality of your life for the worse. here’s an interesting book on that. I notice a lot of people with healthy relationships with low self-esteem feel like they’re undeserving of it and that in of itself is problematic.
  • self-love isn’t the same as narcissism. they are two vastly different things. self-love also isn’t about facials and pampering yourself. it’s about learning to accept who you are as a human being. it’s about quieting the inner critic inside of you and realizing that you are worthy and deserving of good things in life. here’s a website that maybe helpful
  • NO just because you can’t seem to love yourself doesn’t mean that you will never find a good partner. Not at all. It just means that perhaps you should work on yourself first and find happiness in your own company before seeking it out from someone else. We can’t control how other people behave and will find ourselves disappointed more often than not if we rely on external sources. Afterall, one of the paradoxes in life is that you find the perfect person when you are happily single. 

Reblog again for the list of facts.




@fierysuggestion: set your past on fire and leave








please stop reblogging sylvia plath poetry 

For ppl asking why she’s an anti black, anti Semite. She has used the n word and compared her depression to the holocaust

Even not counting her poetry her private journals are full of disgusting, overblown antisemitism. She didn’t just use Jewish people for her metaphors, she outright hated them irl and yet decided to use their suffering for her own gain

here’s a source with some quotes

okay, I’m Jewish and I appreciate this sentiment. and if someone wants to cut out Sylvia Plath, go for it, I get it.

But. by this logic we’d also need to stop reblogging TS Eliot, Oscar Wilde, and Shakespeare quotes. Virginia Woolf wrote anti-semetic things in her private journals, too. If you only want to read classic poets who liked Jews and black people, that’s fine, but like. good luck? Sylvia Plath isn’t an exception.

idk. Tumblr’s attitude of “consume nothing problematic” just doesn’t work if you’re part of a group that most culture-creators over the last few centuries have hated by default. For people actually in those groups, it’s not like the only two choices are 1) worship authors who hate you or 2) completely cut the majority of literature out of your life. You learn to read critically and acknowledge flaws where you find them.

anyway, as a Jewish woman, I would much rather see a version of this post that said “please read Sylvia Plath poetry critically because she’s anti black and antisemetic” than just “stop reblogging Sylvia Plath poetry.”

IMO, reblog Sylvia Plath all you want, just not unthinkingly.

Sometimes I fell like tumblr has put itself on the the extreme opposite of “consume stuff incritically”

“Don’t consume stuff instead of dealing with it.”

If I ignore its existence then I won’t have to take a layered view on it. 

But guys… anti-semitism is a thing and it’s been a rampant thing for centuries. You can’t ignore that the middle ages or the early 20th century existed. Or heck, the middle of the 20th century in the US. 

People always are a product of their times. And some times where just racist as fuck! That was normal! And that is something you have to look at and look at critically because these times will return. And very normal people who are talented and nice will have very horrible, unthinking opinions. 

That includes you, btw. 

So think instead of ignore.

My history professors were always trying to tell us that you CAN NOT view the past through a contemporary lens if you expect to have any kind of understanding of the past. And “understanding” does not mean acceptance, so let’s get that out of the way right now. 

 We have the privilege–yes, PRIVILEGE–of living in a time that is the product of other people’s grueling hard work, of centuries of people before us being arrested, beaten up, impoverished, KILLED so that we could stand on our high horses and be proud of growing up in the enlightenment they made for us. Any one of us unlucky enough to have been born 100, 200 year ago would like 99% be racists, anti Semites, and probably misogynists (yes, even minority groups, because anti Semitism and misogyny have long histories in black culture too) because the only way to not be all that in a world where it was so normal it was like believing in gravity was to be exceptional. I mean, beyond your time philosophical genius kind of  exceptional. For any of us to believe that we would just magically be all enlightened and woke if we hadn’t had the benefit of a world around us teaching us not to be is an insane level of arrogance. It would be like trust-fund Brad insisting he would still be a success even if he hadn’t inherited 80% of a company to start. No, Brad, someone did all that work before you were born buddy. 

Even the amazing people who were taking leaps to end various discriminations a century ago are still problematic. The white abolitionists were definitely racist by our standards, just not racist enough to want slavery (and most of them were insane Christian fundamentalists who had no tolerance for any other creed). But it would be insane and a gross dereliction of historical duty to just ignore these people and pretend they didn’t exist because they couldn’t magically meet all our privileged standards 170 years ago.