Friday, August 7, 2009

The Single Most Important Garment in the Modern Horror Movie

Greetings, horror fashion fans. After considerable research, I have determined that there is one single clothing item that all modern horror movies MUST have. What could it be? Is it shoes equipped with razorblades? Swami turbans that hide your third-eye death ray? Metal-spiked gloves? The Drill Bra?

Nay, my friends. It is, of course, the White Tank Top. It is the Little Black Dress of the modern horror movie. And especially if you are the Final Girl in a teen slasher movie, you have to have it on as you battle for your life against the evil killer.


House of Wax (2005) - check.

The Texas Chainsaw Massacre remake (2003) - check.

Wrong Turn (2003) - check.

Why is this particular top such a necessity in horror? Is it because Sigourney Weaver looked so awesome in hers whilst fighting the Alien?

Well, yes, she did, but no again. It's because white tank tops not only show off one's sexy physique whilst still looking tough....

..they are simple, cheap, washable, and bloodstains show up beautifully on them.

You can trash hell out of a white tank top and still have 9 more left in your cheapo Walmart 10-pack.

It is the costume designer's save-all.


Jack said...

Wow, the plain white tee really does show up in a lot of really bad movies!

The Costuminatrix said...

They are all pretty bad except Martyrs, which is not bad at all.

Tenebrous Kate said...

Second most important garment in the horror movie: NIPPITS!

Curse you, horror movies, and your refusal to show me the nipply goodness that lies under those wifebeaters!!!

Word verification: rogged. Which is similar to robbed, which is how I feel looking closer at those screengrabs :(

Al Bruno III said...

I think MAYTRS was a great film too.

And I never noticed the white tank top thing until now. I think we have a new horror cliche/trope.

(You know I am a pretty chesty man but I don't think I could make this look work for me.)

Erich Kuersten said...

don't forget that it reflects the "final girl" gender ambiguity since it's a "wife-beater" that's been co-opted by the wife, so to speak, just like the survivors in 1980s movies that had really short hair.

But all the other reasons are really good, too!

The Costuminatrix said...

First of all: you must all think I am terribly rude! I did not get comment notification on any of these (except Jack's) until TODAY. Sorry!

Kate: yep, sadly, the smooth featureless Barbie look is par for the course with the white tank top. Even when it is obviously cold outside. This is a suspension of disbelief I am not especially willing to follow along with.

Al: do you think you could make the look work if you had Nippits, as La Tenebrous suggests?

Erich: Now see, I never thought of that! Trust me, that is going RIGHT in my next speech to my director and producer to justify whatever random design I have pulled out of my backside at the last minute. In theatre, you can get away with anything as long as you back it up and SELL it.