The “Thing”

Hey! My name is Mackenzie, and i’m a queer chicanx non-binary transfem artist, and i’m currently a concept artist, but also dabbling in comics as of the moment. My art is usually found under my art alias Tsi-bi on artstation, deviantart and on social media such as tumblr, and finally Tsi_birds on twitter.

For me, when i was looking at an idea for queer horror, my good friend Mallorie who’s a movie buff reminded me of when we watched John Carpenters “The Thing”, and noted that its a good analogical example of how cisgendered people see trans people–how trans people are seen as this  “other”, but also as something predatory, as if someone or rather, some”THING” that is trying to pass and fool, hide, to conceal what it truly is–like a predatory camouflage seeking to wait and hunt those foolish enough to not see through.

This idea delves deep into the fears of how cis people perceive trans people. It reminded me of when my mother who was raised catholic called me a freak, a monster, for being both gay and transgender. I recall her stating that i would never pass, that trans people cant pass, and that i’m an abomination.

When i thought about what queer horror was to me, and the daily nightmares of being trans, the actual fear of being queer and the fear of not being able to transition due to financial constraints and lack of health coverage and autonomy. Not only that, but the fear of violence that many trans woman face, especially trans women of color. It feels almost like horror brought to life. How not passing well enough can result in trans people being attacked, sexually assaulted, harassed, or even killed.

Though, i remember always finding solace in the queer punk scene. Then it brought something to my attention, the already preexisting societal negative perception of punks, but especially queer punks. If there’s something i’ve always loved about the queer punk scene, is how they don’t care what others think about them–unapologetically queer and punk.

Now going back to John Carpenters “The Thing”, and rewatching it again, i really ID’d with “The Thing”, the creature. Trying its best to “pass” in order to survive, but it would always end up being found out that it wasn’t human, and the people in the film would try to kill it,while at the end of the film, it truly shows itself, and in a way, it feels right, like it makes sense, it was done hiding, like saying, “Hey, this is what i am, i’m trans, gay, and punk, and i don’t give a fuck!” There something about the aspect of radical queer trans punks that frightens and pisses off a lot of cis people, yet also advocating self-love, and not giving a fuck about outside perceptions and not caring about trying to pass as super feminine and honestly, that’s awesome.

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