Elliott-Smith D (2013) ‘Death is the New Pornography!’: Gay Zombies and Hypermasculine Cannibalism in Queer Horror in Screening the Undead: Vampires and Zombies in Film and TV.. In: Screening the Undead: Vampires and Zombies in Film and Television. London: Bloomsbury Publishing, pp. 148-173. https://www.bloomsbury.com/uk/screening-the-undead-9781848859241/
With the signs of horrific difference displayed on the surface of the monster’s skin, difference can be acted upon (by avoidance or destruction). The zombie is a visibly ‘outed’ monster forced to inhabit its decaying flesh for eternity. The zombie can ‘be watched’, rendered visible and set apart in order to protect others from infection and conversion. The guardedness inherent in homosexual panic is also not far removed from this. I want to reconsider the zombie as a perfect metaphor for the homosexual within the moving image, first by analysing the figure’s potential for queer meaning then looking specifically at contemporary depictions of the gay zombie in the horror film before focusing mainly on the shambling, semi-articulate, gay zombie from Bruce LaBruce’s melancholic zombie satire Otto; or, Up With Dead People (2008). Here my objective is to understand how the figure can be used both as a cipher for homosexuality and for sub-cultural critique within Western gay male culture.
Queer Horror, Horror Film, LGBTQ Studies, Horror Studies, Monster Theory, Vampires, Zombies, Pornography