Episode 2. Valentine’s Day: Fatal Attraction (1987) vs Fear (1996)


To celebrate the world’s most meaningless holiday, Andrea and Alex take a look at Fear and Fatal Attraction in a celebration of love- the kind that takes a lot to die.


Fatal Attraction. Dir. Adrian Lyne. 1987. [DVD] [Blu-Ray]

Fear. Dir. James Foley. 1996. [DVD] [Blu-Ray]


The Traffic in Men and the Fatal Attraction of Post Feminist Masculinity by Bonnie J Dow. This essay examines The Stepford Wives (original and remake) along with Adrian Lyne’s Fatal Attraction and how new readings of female character impacts and changes readings of male characters.


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3 thoughts on “Episode 2. Valentine’s Day: Fatal Attraction (1987) vs Fear (1996)

  1. Leah says:

    I just started listening to this podcast after a recommendations from Autostraddle, but I was very surprised about your comments about the daughter in Fatal Attraction looking like a boy and tr “he? She?” comment, as well as the ones about Sleep Away Camp, which frames a trans character as the driving force behind her psychosis. Considering the rampant transmisogyny I horror films like Silence of the Lambs, and specifically the equation of trans characters in horror being mentally ill murderers and “freaks,” and given the number of murders we’ve seen of trans women, especially trans women of color, how wouldaddress the responsibility of a feminist critique to be inclusive of trans individuals and their misrepresentation in horror?

    • Alex West says:

      Hi Leah. Thank you so much for your comment. I think feminism and feminist critique should be ENTIRELY inclusive of trans individuals. I made the joke about Michael Douglas’ daughter in the film being a boy which in retrospect may have been in poor taste. As a young girl myself I demanded that I have a short pixie cut so I didn’t have to worry about my hair, now my family jokes about the mysterious son they had for a few years. So my joke was pulled from my own experiences of looking not unlike that actress when I was that age. I never intended it to be offensive and I do see your point about it. We do address the critiques levied against trans killers in Silence of the Lambs and Sleepaway Camp in their respective episodes. In Sleepaway Camp I do not read Angela’s murderous rage to stem from her gender confusion because she is not trans. She did not make that choice. It was forced on her by her aunt. Similarly, in Silence of the Lambs Lecter states that Buffalo Bill believes he is trans but is not. While public perception of these films may still contain transphobia, the films do not.

      • Leah says:

        Hi, Alex,

        Thanks for the quick response, and I apologize for the awful smart-phone typing in my comment above. It might be worth making a program note on the page or the text of iTunes file about the joke, because it really comes out of nowhere in the show and was very hard to listen to. I realize it wasn’t your intent to come off that way, but it really puts a damper on what is otherwise a great episode and if I had known it were coming and could have skipped over it, I wouldn’t have spent the rest of the episode freaking out that this new podcast I like might not be a safe space.

        I’m only up to Episode 4 so far (kept listening because I was hoping maybe someone wrote to you before I did and the subject was addressed), so I’m glad to hear that you did cover those films later on and I’ll certainly give them a listen. Like I said, I came over from Autostraddle, and I’ll be curious to see how your take compares to the author’s here:


        (The article doesn’t cover Sleepaway Camp 2, which I feel does a lot better with the character–who is established as being trans at that point–and that she isn’t murdering people because of her gender identity but because they’re asshole teens in a slasher film.)

        Thanks again for the reply.

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