ISSUE 100

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 Welcome to the only horror film to cause PTSD in viewers, researchers concluding it is almost as bad as seeing a child being run over by a car or watching Fox News. 
 Be prepared to refuse to open closets, to set bear traps around your bed before you sleep, and to swear never to trust a little girl again. She could be demon-possessed. She could have a head that turns 180 degrees. She could be selling Girl Scout Cookies—but she’s out of Thin Mints.  
 You will carry a machete in the small of your back and preemptively chop Greg’s leg off when he shoos away a fly and startles you. You try to pass it off like you’re an extreme environmentalist—like god damn it, flies matter too—but from the looks in the room, you can tell it doesn’t quite excuse your actions.   
 You will expect every normal interaction to end in torture and despair. If anyone rings the doorbell, they are there to hurt you. It’s the pizza man, but there are anchovies on the pizza. It’s your ex, but they berate you for failing to live up to so many romantic expectations. It’s a teenager, but he’s a Millennial and hands you a note that says, “One day I will be in charge.”  
 It’s probably also a ruse, so if you open the door, there won’t be anyone there, and the deranged clown will be right behind you, laughing a high-pitched squeal. Then he will chase you around the house with a collection of animate dolls who are also clowns.
 You will never be able to go to the basement again. Those echoing wood steps will sound out a death knell because there are about a thousand mice down there, ready to surround you and eat your face.  
 The movie is set in a cabin in the woods with no one around, and you are trapped in the mind of the popular girl in high school, the most frightening thing our writers could think of besides having to support a family. Most viewers can’t bear being in her mind, soon having to be strapped to a gurney by medical personnel and hauled off to a psychiatric ward.
 She follows Google maps to an abandoned shack in the woods. She looks at her phone, but it has three percent battery, so she posts a message to Facebook. Check out me and this rustic cabin in the woods. #adventure. #totallyfine. #don’tcallthepolice. #mightnotrespondto messagesforthreeweeks. So, in retrospect, not the ideal things to post.    
 And she decides to stay the night, even though it’s obviously not a good place to be, being filled with headless manikins, fishhooks, thousands of empty ketchup bottles, and Justin Bieber albums. Why does she stay? Because she’s a moron.   
 For the next half hour, she will stare into the distance and ask questions of meaning, giving answers that logically don’t make sense. You want to like her—out of a vague feeling that you should give everyone a chance—but it’s hard, really hard. She will go insane, and you will go insane watching her go insane, and your loved ones might go insane watching you go insane watching her go insane… an unforgiving cycle to say the least.
 Scary enough? Not yet. The last hour of the film is where we introduce the serial killers in masks hiding under the porch. It’s what happens when you don’t spray for murderers—or at least put down some lemon grass and vinegar mix. There will be darkness. And fear. And tense, sweaty violinists playing tense, sweaty music.
 She lives but only after becoming a serial killer herself. But this also means she doesn’t tweet as much. So… the situation kind of evens itself out.    
 But that’s not it. The real terror comes when she wakes up on the couch. It was a dream, and it’s twenty years later, and she’s twenty years older with thirty thousand dollars of debt, several failed relationships, and an unsustainable number of cats. There’s far too many vodka bottles and empty Eggo waffle boxes around to feel comfortable, and she’s watching daytime television. That’s the moment that gets you.
   
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