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Dead of Night$
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Jez Conolly and David Owain Bates

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780993238437

Published to Liverpool Scholarship Online: February 2021

DOI: 10.3828/liverpool/9780993238437.001.0001

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‘Something evil, monstrously evil’

‘Something evil, monstrously evil’

(p.71) ‘Something evil, monstrously evil’
Dead of Night

Jez Conolly

David Owain Bates

Liverpool University Press

This chapter focuses on the third story, ‘Haunted Mirror’, directed by Robert Hamer. The story belongs to socialite Joan Cortland (Googie Withers) who tells the group about her husband Peter (Ralph Michael) and his obsession with an antique mirror. Lurking in the dark grandeur of the other room in the mirror is an unseen entity from a bygone age, the spirit of the mirror's murderous former owner Francis Etherington, which preys on Peter's jealousies. The mirror as a supernatural threshold has become deeply synonymous with the horror genre, having travelled far and wide by way of Chinese and Greek mythology, Grimm's fairy tales, and the mind of Lewis Carroll. The chapter looks at the British post-war male gender crisis embodied by Peter Cortland and the comparative strength of character displayed by Joan.

Keywords:   Haunted Mirror, Robert Hammer, mirror, supernatural, horror genre, male gender crisis

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