A review of feminist horror anthology zine Final Girl

DSCF0279I’m not sure exactly when Final Girl #1 came out, as the tumblr for the zine has precious little information about said zine, but it doesn’t really matter. Quimby’s listed it as “new” in October 2015, and I picked it up there a few months ago. The zine is primarily written by Sarah Kolodziej and Bethy Squires, with submissions from other writers. Every issue is guaranteed to include one chapter each from stories the two are writing independently, as will as “at least one short story and one piece of horror criticism.”

Sarah’s story, “Paradise Losers,” is set in a high school and focuses on Wheeler and Mona, a pair of outcast friends who “attempt to suppress, or at least stall, the oncoming scourge of demons.” This first chapter is short, and no actual demons show up, but it’s an interesting set up and I’ll look forward to reading more in the next issue. Bethy’s story will become in Issue #2 and will be titled “The Door in the Floor.” She has a one-off piece of flash fiction in this one titled “The Knife,” an amusingly morbid little number that’s a bit confusing but fun nonetheless.

Bethy also has part one of a Twilight Zone retrospective in this issue titled “How I Learned to Stop Complaining & Love The Twilight Zone,” which is the highlight of the issue. She talks about her checkered history with the iconic paranormal television show, and rates all the episodes she’s seen so far into Actually Good, Meh, and just Read the Wiki. She talks about how she had read the Wikipedia episode plot summaries before she saw any of the episodes, and I felt an immediate affection for her, because I did the same thing in high school with Buffy the Vampire Slayer at a time when there was no way my religiously conservative parents were going to let me watch it. I knew the characters and story arcs of the show pretty well by the time I actually watched my first episode. She then goes on to review a number of episodes, and her witty and humorous writing makes these more entertaining than many of the episodes themselves are.

Final Girl is slight at only 14 pages, but it’s more than worth the $1.50 it cost me. I’ll look forward to picking up issue #2 whenever it comes out.

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