I Know What You Did Last Summer 1×06 “Least You Had a Spare” pissed us off. And honestly, it’s not because of what you’d expect. We’re not pissed off that Riley (Ashley Moore) died. Like the others, she had it coming from episode 1. We’re not even truly mad that her mom Courtney (Cassie Beck) was killed too. She was a shitty mom through and through. We’re mad at how her death was treated.
As consumers of horror and slashers, we know that drill on how things work. And we know that a gruesome murder scene reveal is part of the deal. We want to see how those around the deceased react to the grisly murder and how it makes them even more determined to catch the bad guy at the heart of it all. I Know What You Did Last Summer decided to do something else. Something so trashy that we’re still livid about it.
When Courtney’s body was being observed, they didn’t go for what you’d expect. Well, at least not initially. They had the obligatory “dead body with dead eyes just laying there” moment before she was whisked away. But before that, they decided to introduce the death of Courtney by showing us her bright-colored g-string. Even typing this is making us mad all over again.
Courtney was an asshole, she depended on her daughter to be her friend instead of her child, and she spent way too much time being an asshole. And we get why in this slasher she was killed. Well kind of. She was rude, mean, and an asshole. That’s usually enough for the killer to go for them. We don’t get how she’s connected to the murder of Lennon besides being the mom of one of the kids who killed her, but that’s for the future.
The point is, Courtney was a complicated woman. But that in no way, shape, or form made it so she needed to be treated like trash after her death. Showing us a close-up of her g-string was a choice by the team behind I Know What You Did Last Summer. They decided that we needed a reminder of how trashy Courtney was, how low class she was, and that even in death she was not worthy. And that’s a really shitty thing to do.
It’s made even worse by the fact that you know they could’ve straightened out her underwear and made it look clean. But no, they let it be a rolled-up mess to emphasize the trashiness of this woman and how she was nothing. And before you say that we’re reading into this, have you been watching I Know What You Did Last Summer? Because there has been this underlying divide between the rich and poor since the start.
How is it that the only Black woman on I Know What You Did Last Summer is the drug dealer? How is Riley the poor one living with her mom in a dump? How is this young woman the only one who experienced a racially profiled and aggressive moment where a white cop almost pulled out a gun on her? For doing what? Existing? This show has been treating poor people or people of color, two distinctly different things, as if they were one. And that’s bullshit.
Ultimately, we’re disappointed in I Know What You Did Last Summer and are left wondering who is the writer’s room and who has made these small but significant decisions about who these women and people are because of the color of their skin or where they come from. It’s not a cute look and we’re sick with ourselves that we didn’t realize this sooner.
Do better, I Know What You Did Last Summer.