Housing crisis reflected in books and movies

The folks over at media blog io9 are wondering if “the housing crisis finally infected horror movies and television.” And the answer appears to be you bet.

Pop culture has always reflected the national anxiety du jour, whether we were currently cowering in fear of women, the Reds, the Bomb, contagions, terrorists, or whatever’s next. And now, says io9, its all about housing.

It cites a list of movies and television shows featuring haunted homes: American Horror Story, Dream House, The Innkeepers, Silent House, and Woman in Black.

But haunted houses are nothing new, so io9 muses:

If these flicks are touching on housing crisis fears intentionally or unintentionally, we’d expect to see a lot of people freaking out over losing their houses. We’d also see a lot of references to real estate development (or lack thereof), as well as intense longing directed at gorgeous homes.

That in mind, it looks at each of those flicks for evidence of housing anxiety, giving each a “Housing Crisis Anxiety Score.” For example, The Innkeepers:

Housing Crisis Anxiety Score: 8 out of 10, for scariness related to soon-to-be-demolishedness. Also for featuring slackers with low-income jobs who will never be able to afford mortgages.

Back in 2009 the same people noted a slew of novels that seemed to be channeling housing angst: Audrey’s Door (woman moves into “shockingly affordable” apartment… that’s haunted), The Birthing House, Elsewhere (real-estate agent desperate to remove haunted house stigma), The Girl On Legare Street (house renovator), House Of Reckoning, House Of Windows, Tribute (house flipper), and on and on.

Fun reads.

About Andrew Kantor

Andrew is VAR's editor and information manager, and -- lessee now -- a former reporter for the Roanoke Times, former technology columnist for USA Today, and a former magazine editor for a bunch of places. He hails from New York with stops in Connecticut, New Jersey, Cincinnati, Columbus, and Roanoke.
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