top of page
  • Writer's pictureHorror Spinsters

Know Your Roots! The Origins of Horror Part 2 (40s/50s)

In this episode, we return to our Origins of Horror series where we look at the history of horror and its development throughout the decades while discussing how current events shaped it. Last time we discussed the beauty and magic of the 1920s and 1930s, and this time we are heading into the 1940s and 1950s. In the 1940s, known as the Lost Years of Horror, creators were fighting censorship brought on by the Hays Code and growing up alongside the film noir genre. While in the 1950s, the horror genre exploded due to the Cold War and technological advancements that came out of it. Films now focused on the fear of nuclear annihilation, the catastrophic results of the a-bomb and the invasion of the “Other”. The films we discuss for the episode are The Picture of Dorian Gray (1945), Cat People (1942), The Creature from The Black Lagoon (1954), Invasion of the Body Snatchers (1956) and Gojira (1954).

Enjoy and welcome to our dark side…

Intro/Outro Music: Robeast by Dance with the Dead

Artwork by: Jess Hrycyk

Editing work by: Jessica



The Lost Years of Horror Movies: 1936-1938 and 1947-1952 By Jim Vorel

The Misunderstood Monster o the 1940s by Varden Frias

What Happened in the 1940s

Cat People (1942): A Psychological Horror and Film Noir by McCaggers

The Monster as Woman: Two Generations of Cat People by Karen Hollinger

Cat People (1942): Coding Lesbianism via Otherness by Elizabeth Erwin

The Obscure Object of Desire: Gender, Sexuality, and Subjugation In the Lewton/Tourneur Cat People by Ina Rae Hark

Gothic Horror: The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde by Robert Zakes

Subversive Horror Cinema: Countercultural Messages of Films from Frankenstein to the Present Book by Jon Towlson

Nuclear and Social Anxiety in 1950s Horror Films by Rebecca Saunders

From Grindhouse Cinema to Invasion Narratives, Horror in the 1950s by Sam Stone

What Happened in the 1950s

A Brief History of the Creature from the Black Lagoon Franchise by Jim Knipfel

Paranoia and Nightmare: Invasion of the Body Snatchers (1956)

Was ‘Invasion of the Body Snatchers’ Intended as Political Allegory?

Godzilla was a Metaphor for Hiroshima, and America Whitewashed it

Gojira (1954)

From Cat People to Bedlam: The Horror Films of Val Lewton by Dark Corners Reviews


Next month is PRIDE and we are very happy to say that we will be covering DRAG QUEEN HORROR and discussing the fantastically bloody indie film Death Drop Gorgeous for the podcast AND doing a charity screening of it over on Twitch – Stay tuned for more details to come!



85 views0 comments


bottom of page