Saturday, November 19, 2016

Horror Podcasts: The Girls in the Back Row

The Girls in the Back Row is a podcast that reviews and discusses horror films. For each film they discuss, Kate and Tab briefly describe the film, give a spoiler free review, and give their first impressions. After a short break which is usually a trailer for the film they are discussing, they have a more in depth and spoiler-full discussion. Not only do they timestamp every section of the show, but their show notes are quite detailed. If they mention a documentary or another film, it will be linked or at least listed for reference. Their discussions often go into the history of the film and put the it into context with information from behind the scenes. For example, the 1934 film Black Cat had a tiny budget compared to other Universal films and was filmed in 15 days which explains its short run time of under an hour. The studio didn't want the film to be so dark or creepy, explaining its uneven tone. I love that they research so many details and it's different than every other podcast out there.

I've only listened to 4 episodes, but I'm definitely listening to them as long as they put out episodes. Their first episode was introducing themselves and how they got into horror. Since I think they're around my same age, we have a lot of the same horror gateway media like Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark with its horrifying illustrations. Their experiences had some similarity to mine in that I never had friends who liked horror and I learned not to talk about it since it always got a negative response. Some of their early horror references sound awesome like the author Richard Laymon. Kate came to the genre more as an adult and is watching a lot of things for the first time while Tab gets the thrill of introducing movies to someone into the horror genre. Tab is crazy knowledgeable about the genre.

The episodes I've listened to so far where about their Horror Origins, Suspiria and Demons, The Black Cat, and High Tension. I hated Suspiria when I watched it because the characters and plot were so lackluster. Kate and Tab have inspired me to rewatch the film with a different perspective. The film was made as a horror fairy tale with a bright color palette. The colors, dimensions, and exaggerated sets are made to make the film look nightmarish. I do remember the film being beautiful, but I was so annoyed by the lack of story and lame characters that I didn't enjoy it much. Their detailed discussion on the background of the film and all the small details I didn't notice make me excited to watch it again. Their discussion of High Tension is also very good and they discussed in detail the exact problem I had with the film.

Kate and Tab are a killer duo with amazing research and perspectives. I can't wait  to listen to the rest of their episodes and watch the films they cover.

My rating: 5/5 fishmuffins

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