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First Final Girl: Laurie Strode

This week, the blog has featured musings about the power to scare movie audiences, as embodied by Halloween's Michael Myers, or "The Shape."
It has also featured a (briefer) discussion of Dr. Sam Loomis (Donald Pleasance) as a manifestation of a curse called the Cassandra Complex: the scenario of knowing the worst is true, but not being able to convince anyone of that fact.
These analyses would not be complete, however, without a close-up look at another historically significant character: Laurie Strode (Jamie Lee Curtis), the protagonist of John Carpenter and Debra Hill's Halloween (1978).

Carol J. Clover, the horror scholar who coined and defined the term "final girl" in 1992, wrote of Laurie Strode as the "original" of the form, or the prototype. Historically, this categorization is borne out by the fact that Laurie arrives in film history before such heroes as Ripley (Sigourney Weaver) in Alien (1979), or Nancy Thompson (Heather Langenkamp) i…

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