The Black Dahlia and Halloween

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A Google image search for “Black Dahlia” “Halloween” and “costume.”


It is October, which means Halloween is coming up and Instagram is full of cosplayers practicing their Black Dahlia makeup. Really, folks, don’t do this. Dressing up as a murder victim – who has living relatives – is very uncool.

About lmharnisch

I am retired from the Los Angeles Times
This entry was posted in 1947, Black Dahlia and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

5 Responses to The Black Dahlia and Halloween

  1. E. Yarber says:

    The strange thing is that the people impersonating this victim probably look at it as empowerment. “Look at me! Aren’t I freaking you out? Oh, I’m so ABOVE any actual tragedy.”

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    • lmharnisch says:

      I suspect people don’t think about the implications of their actions; I suspect to them it just seems cool. And that it’s never been done before.

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      • E. Yarber says:

        I’m probably projecting much more awareness onto such stunts than is there. After all, they’re not calling themselves Elizabeth Short but “The Black Dahlia,” which these days probably seems like only another media image to mash up.

        It reminds me that my mother bought me a Red Devil costume (complete with plastic pitchfork) for trick-or-treating when I was four. I’m going to have to ask her about that sometime.

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  2. Eve says:

    OK, I must admit that when I lived in Baltimore in the ’70s a friend used to throw a “come as a famous death” party (we were very big on theme parties). I was Isadora Duncan one year, Marilyn Monroe another year, and once I was Amelia Earhart and just didn’t show up.

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  3. JAMES says:

    Here in Chicago there’s a Halloween Spook House that has a John Wayne Gacy theme with bodies in the cellar. A lot of people here are upset about it. Especially with the victims families still here.

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