ByTommy DePaoli, writer at
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Tommy DePaoli

When it first terrified audiences in 1974, The Texas Chainsaw Massacre opened the door to a whole new world of slasher horror. Even with a slew of reboots and sequels, the original has remained close to the mind and guts of many fans, so it comes as no surprise that some are still proposing new ways to look at the classic movie.

Take redditor doris5's theory, for example, in which she speculates that Leatherface was concealing a whole lot more than his face. Check out the reasoning behind why Leatherface could have been a woman this whole time.

The theory argues that Leatherface's behavior is comparable to a 1970s homemaker

Presumably not in the sense that every housewife was maiming visitors with various metal objects, but instead the evidence comes from the fact that Leatherface is the one who stays at home while the husband is working and the son is out galavanting.

Based on these roles, and the assumption that Leatherface was responsible for decorating the home, the theory speculates that the iconic villain is a woman

Leatherface is territorial over objects in the house and doesn't want anyone touching appliances like the freezer. In a traditional view of families around this time (although more likely in the 1950s), homemakers took a lot of pride in their domestic devices.

Finally, before the movie's famous dinner scene, Leatherface prepares with a full face of make-up

Getting all dolled up before a special meal plus constant high-pitched noises lead this particular fan to imagine that this is a female killer who's been hiding in plain sight all along.

Another view, provided by director Tobe Hooper in the commentary, is that Leatherface is male but fills in these gender roles

In Hooper's view, Leatherface adopts the spots in the family that are otherwise vacant, meaning the wife and mother, and that's why he puts on his "pretty" face here.

Personally, I don't read Leatherface as a woman, and I'm more inclined to think of him as adapting to a wildly sadistic family circle. However, I do love how The Texas Chain Saw Massacre continues to inspire dissection and conversation so many years after its release, and that's only part of the reason it's one of the greats.

(Source: reddit)


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