Howl at the moon: Women,Blood and Werewolves

Tomorrow is the last day in February, which signifies the end of Women
in Horror month and I felt it appropriate to touch on not only a staple of horror, the werewolf, but something also integral to women, menstruation.
Known by such unflattering euphemisms as the rag, and the curse (just to
name a couple) The connection between lycanthrophy and the lunar
cycle is not a new concept. In films the subject of bleeding crotches
is either shied away from entirely or made out to be the end all be all
of rage inducing horror  and/or are linked with female sexuality.
Rarely do the bleeding raging women fare well in such a scenario
until they can be “saved” from themselves.

Werewolf Woman (Italy, 1976 –La Lupa Mannara) is such a film, in which a rape victim has werewolf visions and proceeds to seduce and rip out the throats of men. And while she exacts revenge on her rapists
she eventually ends up reduced to a feral state and sent away to
a mental hospital for the remainder of her life.
In Norse mythology, Gjalp(howler) a giantess
(a connection could be made with howler and wolf)
attempted to drown Thor and Loki in a torrent of menstrual blood.
Not surprisingly, this isn’t one of those tales you hear spread about
like those of Thor and Loki. About a year or two ago I  wrote
a body horror short where the quiet female lead would transform
via an unbearable pain (Dysmenorrhea) around the time of the full moon and lure men she met online then drown her suitors in, yes , you guessed it a torrent of menstrual blood.

She would wait until their head was betwixt her thighs during a certain act then
literally unleash her own river of red.
I even found a male lead that was more than willing to take
part in the fun, however someone beat me to it and made their own similar film. I saw the trailer online and feeling the ideas were too similar, laid mine to rest. My inspiration was not the tale of Gjalp (though parallels can be drawn), but primarily my own harrowing times dealing with a pain so severe as to make one feel as if they are undergoing a transformation.  I even went so far as to crib a scene from an actual experience I had and writing it into the script.
It was my own way of dealing with an excruciating pain that I was beyond used to. Over the years there have been a few films that have touched upon lycanthropy and lunar cycles  but for the most part it is portrayed as this awful affliction which causes women to become beasts. And while yes cramps can indeed be beastly the whole connecting menstruation to monstrosity goes back
to the stigmatizing nature of possessing such an attribute.
In my script however, there was no mental hospital admission,
no shining white knight, no elixir to cure her. Her power could not and would not be contained.


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