Podcast: Gem Seddon on ‘When a Stranger Calls Back

May 11th, 2024 | By Matthew Monagle

When a Stranger Calls Back Carol Kane

While the article-to-podcast-guest pipeline is rare at Certified Forgotten, it’s by no means unheard of. The latest writer to make the leap is Gem Seddon (Vulture, Inverse), who follows up her 2020 article on When a Stranger Calls Back (“Gaslighting the Final Girl in ‘When a Stranger Calls Back'”) to share her love for this unconventional horror franchise.

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Released 14 years after When a Stranger Calls, Fred Walton‘s made-for-TV sequel picks up with Carol Kane‘s adult Jill, who now teaches students at the local university how to defend themselves in dangerous situations. When Jill Schoelen‘s Julia comes to her for help with a childhood stalker, Jill and Julia must face their demons together and find justice (or even revenge) in the process.

In this short excerpt from the episode, Gem explains why she picked When a Stranger Calls Back for the podcast and throws back to an earlier podcast discussion about her love of the Alien franchise:

“Oh my gosh, this movie just breaks my heart when I watch it now, because it means something different to me as a woman who’s lived for 30 years and through a whole load of crap. And I see that echoed on the screen with Jill’s story and with Julia’s story in particular.

I kind of see women being traumatized and re-traumatized over and over again. I see that with a lot of slashers and the Alien franchise as well. Every time I watch Alien 3, I continue to get more and more infuriated with how Ripley is treated the older I get. I mean, I love that movie, but it’s very upsetting to me because of that. And that’s changed as well. The art stays the same, but we change.”

The When a Stranger Calls Back episode of the Certified Forgotten podcast is now available to stream on Spotify, Apple Podcasts, or the podcast platform of your choice.

Matthew Monagle

Matthew is an Austin-based film critic. You can find his work as sites like Film School Rejects, The Playlist, SlashFilm, and the Austin Chronicle. He is also a member of the Austin Film Critics Association. Matt spends most of his free time doting on his dog and losing games of Slay the Spire.

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