Snuggle up and get prepared for a scary good time with these entertainment recommendations perfect for Halloween.
One of the greatest joys of fall is witnessing the days getting darker faster, meaning more time for spooky enjoyment with the perfect October weather. Curl up under a blanket, get the fire going, and pick up a scary book or put on a frightening film to get into the Halloween spirit. From horror classics with queer undertones to the best queer horror we’re enjoying today, there’s so much to enjoy combining LGBTQ+ identity with the genre we’ve always been a part of.
Below you’ll find a selection of various scary books and movies from Amazon that our editors recommend. Check them out and have a spooky good time this Halloween.
The editors of equalpride who publish this site selected these products and equalpride may earn a small affiliate share if you purchase which helps push our voice to more LGBTQ+ and increase print magazines to counter banned printed books.
Scary Books To Read
Through twenty-five essays by writers like Carmen Maria Machado and Addie Tsai, It Came from the Closet explores the relationship between the horror genre and LGBTQ+ representation, exploring queer themes found in films like Jennifer's Body and Dead Ringers. In these essays, the rich reciprocity between queerness and horror is conveyed, showing that even though our community has been fodder for these stories, we've found a way to take it back.
Fans of the Carmilla webseries will be sure to enjoy this next book. Based on the sapphic vampire series, Carmilla mixes the camp of Buffy with the snark of Veronica Mars in a mysterious and spooky world. With strong queer representation, this favorite among the LGBTQ+ community shows how mixing queer identity and horror is just perfect.
Who doesn't love a doomed queer romance? When characters are given agency and cannot be together, it makes for the most compelling read. The Monster of Elendhaven paints a darkly compelling fantasy of revenge, featuring murder, a monster, and the magician who loves both.
A great allegory for the bigotry still faced by the LGBTQ+ community today, Manhunt follows two friends in a postapocalyptic world, hunting feral men for their organs. When they run into loner Robbie, this found family fights to survive murderous TERFs, a sociopathic billionaire bunker brat, and their own relationship dynamics. For an insightful and perfectly queer read, this novel is for you.
A classic from Stephen King all about coming of age and being a woman, Carrie always makes for an interesting read. Blending religion and the supernatural, Carrie has also been claimed as a feminist allegory (believing that she lives in some way or another). That coming into ones power has always been symbolic to a queer awakening, and with one like Carrie White's, queer power is ultimate.
It all came from Robert Bloch's novel. The beloved classic from Hitchock, Psycho, focuses on Norman Bates and the mother who torments him body and soul. When Marion Crane makes her way to Bates Motel, her destined run-in with Norman leads to bloody consequences. Queer-coded, Norman Bates makes for a compelling character to this day.
Fans of Netflix and Mike Flannagan's new The Fall of the House of Usher will enjoy this other Edgar Allan Poe reimagining, What Moves the Dead. With a queer twist, this story follows Madeline and Roderick Usher as they face their twisted fates in this new horror classic.
Similar in theme to Carrie, the sapphic-tinged novel Things Have Gotten Worse Since We Last Spoke follows two lonely women in an internet chat room, featuring an unworldly transformation if they give into their darkest desires. Macabre and sadistic, this novel is not for the faint of heart. You'll be hiding under the covers after reading this dark tale.
A very queer, and very original story comes in the form of Plain Bad Heroines, set at the Brookhants Schhol for Girls. As two girls who are obsessed with a young writer die mysteriously, followed by three more deaths, the haunted history of the school they attended becomes a queer, feminist legend inspiring a writer and two actors to adapt the story. But as the past intertwines with the present, no one is safe in this sapphic tale that will intrigue you to the very last page.
A queer tale of repression and isolation, Summer Sons follows two best friends who did everything together, until Eddie decides to leave Andrew for school. But when Eddie dies from an apparent suicide, Andrew must uncover the truth that involved hot boys, drugs, and a gruesome phantom haunting Andrew. Sexy and sickening, this novel oozes with Sothern Gothic style.
One of the greatest arthouse horror films to come out of the 21st century is Stranger by the Lake, a French film about a queer serial killer stalking, seducing, and murdering men at a popular secluded nude beach at a lake filled with gay men. Intensely erotic, this horror film is subversive and absolutely gripping.
Is there anything more representative of the midnight movie, the quasi-genre of cult films that have amassed fervent followings, than The Rocky Horror Picture Show? Starring Susan Sarandon and Tim Curry as the "sweet transvestite" Dr. Frank-N-Furter, this wholly original film created by Richard O'Brien is the rock musical horror-comedy that proudly wears its queerness on its fishnets.
From director Christopher Landon, who's directed queer-friendly horror films like Happy Death Day and its sequel, comes the new body-swap horror comedy classic, Freaky. Starring Vince Vaughn in a perfectly played role as both a serial killer and the body of a serial killer inhabited by a teenage girl. It's got lots of queer moments, great kills, and some really fun comedy.
Remember the A24 horror movie by Ti West, X? Well, Knife+Heart did it first. This queer horror film is set on a gay porn film set where a queer director endures a dizzying investigation into a murder on her set. Styled after Dario Argento and Brian De Palma, this queer movie knows how to pay homage to the classics.
Speaking of Argento, the master of horror's most well-known film Suspiria is always a classic when choosing a horror film to watch. With queer undertones, this visually stunning film follows young dancers at an intense academy as they mysteriously disappear among a coven of witches.
A queer horror classic, Ginger Snaps explores the same puberty tropes of Carrie with a werewolf twist. Deliciously fun to watch, the relationship Ginger faces as she transforms calls for queer readings.
From horror afficionado Clive Barker comes the sadomasochistic and leather classic, Hellraiser. Focusing on a damned man resurrected from Pinhead and his horde of demons who must kill to regain his life, the queer undertones are a lot of fun to watch among all the intense body horror.
The tales from the sequel to Wes Craven's A Nightmare on Elm Street have added a bit of controversy on the sexuality of the actors involved to horror film canon. Scream Queen! My Nightmare on Elm Street follows actor Mark Patton as he sets the record straight and travels to horror conventions in this queer-focused documentary.
Although not a movie, this AMC series that's also streaming on Max is based on the classic horror novel and film by Anne Rice. Interview with the Vampire takes the queer subtext behind the vampires' relationship to the forefront in this uber-queer reimagining. Experience the seduction, blood, and inner torture that made this story a must-watch for horror fans everywhere.
Like the novel mentioned before, as one of the most critically-acclaimed horror films of all time, we couldn't resist also mentioning the Hitchcock film. Psycho stars Anthony Perkins, a well-known gay actor, and Janet Leigh in an Oscar-nominated role, bringing gravitas and authenticity to the characters they play.
As mentioned in the first book recommendation, Jennifer's Body has the queer subtext in the relationship between Megan Fox and Amanda Seyfried's characters. A powerful story about the friendship between teenage girls, this horror film has become a bona fide classic today.
When it comes to camp, Chucky knows how to deliver. Especially in the queer favorite, Bride of Chucky, featuring the voice of Jennifer Tilley in the title role. A fun take on The Bride of Frankenstein, this horror-comedy is so much fun that you'll forget to be scared by the gruesome deaths.
Another campy horror franchise, as evidenced by his killer style, is Nightmare On Elm Street, featuring the horror icon Freddy Kreuger. Check out this collector set featuring all seven of the films featuring the devilish and grotesque serial killer haunting your nightmares.
One of the most recent entries in a horror franchise came in the form of the long-running and endlessly inventive Scream 6, featuring one of the most prominent LGBTQ+ horror protagonists in the history of cinema. Finally having that queer representation in horror is paying off with a character that we always want to root for.
When it comes to iconic horror characters that the LGBTQ+ have claimed as their own, The Babadook became a cultural icon in the 2010s when the film was released. Almost like a mascot for the queer community, the Babadook has frightened us and shocked us as the queen of horror.