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Weekend Recs: Final Girl Trope

Happy Friday, Wildcats! Falvey Memorial Library is delivering you another semester of Weekend Recs, a blog dedicated to filling you in on what to read, listen to, and watch over the weekend. Annie, a graduate assistant from the Communication department, scours the internet, peruses the news, and digs through book stacks to find new, relevant, and thought-provoking content that will challenge you and prepare you for the upcoming week. 

With Halloween right around the corner, horror movies are in season. Over the weekend, horror movies will likely fill up cable television runtime, streaming service recommendations, and, as we’ve already seen over the past month, movie theaters. As it may become clear to anyone watching horror, new or old, the Final Girl trope stands out as a lasting genre cliche, albeit with some updated takes. This weekend’s recs will explore the Final Girl trope and help you conclude this spooky season with a bang.

If you have 10 minutes…and are unfamiliar with the Final Girl trope, read this No Film School article. This article is a great introduction to the trope for any newcomers and an interesting (and short) read for fans.

If you have you have 34 minutes…and want to learn how the trope has evolved over the years, watch this Youtube video essay by Naomi Cannibal. She delves into the history of the Scream Queens and Final Girl tropes with some of the the most iconic historic and modern examples to date.

If you have 1 hour and 20 minutes…and want to check out a great horror movie podcast, check out Dead Meat Podcast’s “Final Girl” episode. Dead Meat is one of the best content creators for all things horror, and this episode is an enjoyable listen.

If you have 1 hour and 32 minutes…and want to check out a film that blends the best elements of campy old slashers with a comedic, self-aware twist, watch The Final Girls. It follows in the footsteps of films like Scream and Cabin in the Woods while poking fun at the Final Girl trope.

If you have 1 hour and 40 minutes…and want to check out my personal favorite Final Girl, watch Wes Craven’s Scream. This movie put the life (or death) back into the dwindling slasher sub-genre, and Sidney Prescott exemplifies a truly formidable Final Girl.

If you have 1 hour and 50 minutes…and want to see an early Final Girl prototype, watch the Alfred Hitchcock’s classic horror-thriller Psycho, available in Falvey’s DVD Collection. This movie blends the Scream Queen and Final Girl trope together and even if you are aware of the iconic shower scene and the villain’s psychology, still manages to be eerie and intriguing.

If you have 5 hours…and want to interact with some (slightly) less scary Final Girl content, read Neil Gaiman’s Coraline. This book, and the movie adaptation, gives a family-friendly twist to the horror genre, and Coraline certainly fits in the Final Girl category.

If you have 6 hours…and want to read the book that first coined the term “Final Girl,” read Carol Clover’s Men, Women, and Chain Saws: Gender in the Modern Horror Film, available online through Falvey.


Annie Stockmal is a graduate student in the Communication Department and graduate assistant in Falvey Memorial Library.


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Last Modified: October 28, 2022