• Sun. Jul 14th, 2024

What Makes A Matching Twin Co-ord So Creepy?

ByTilly Bankes

Oct 17, 2023
Two identical teal dresses and shoes hang beside each other

It’s finally October and that means it’s practically Christmas for fellow Costume nerds. It is the time of year where costumes are pushed to the edge in order to thrill and daunt their beloved audience. Some costumes range from technically skilled makeup and special effects to a simple scream mask, but nothing ever seems to beat a matching sibling duo. In the past, we have seen them donning the same dress, hairstyle, or accessory to create this frightening picture such as the infamous Alexa and Alexie Grady from ‘The Shining’. But what is it that makes the symmetry so unnerving?

To help me explore deeper into the depths of twinning attire, I recently enjoyed watching the new Spanish Horror, ‘Tin and Tina’, written and directed by Rubin Stein. The story introduces a couple, Lola and Adolfo, unable to bear children as a result of a past miscarriage. In order to fill the gap in their lives, the husband and wife adopt two albino children from a nearby Convent, Tin and Tina. Apart from their pale complexion and extreme Christian beliefs, they are a perfectly normal set of twins…or so it seems (cue spooky music).

When we are first introduced to Tin and Tina, Adolfo and Lola come to the visit the Spanish Convent. The twins are called to greet their new parents with large grins and matching garb. Tina has snow white hair, thin and straight, curling slightly toward her face where a fringe and mid-length is cut. Tin equals with a shorter length. The pair wear white, perfectly ironed school shirts with a V-neck lined with small glass buttons and short crisp sleeves. On top, Tina wears a blurred brown, plaid patterned apron with very slight pleats uniformly falling from her waist whilst Tin’s shirt is neatly tucked into a pair of dark brown trousers. The unusual neatness and rigidity of balance is essentially off-putting because of the usual characteristic of messy children.

After the adoption goes through, Tin and Tina are shown to their bedroom where Lola files through their methodically packed pyjamas. You can see glimpses of pretty dresses with frill collars, and cotton shirts with perfectly sewn buttons all lined in humble floral patterns and borders and washed with dulled earth tones. It creates this image of past children, as if Tin and Tina are grown up versions of Lola’s unborn babies and their clothes are mere dusty photographs of memories. This is especially prevalent in comparison to modern day vibrant colours you might see in places like Kids H&M.

In the small town where Lola and Adolfo live, the school’s church holds a holy communion where Tin and Tina dress appropriately for mass. Yet again, their costumes leak a visual atmosphere of foreboding apprehension. Traditionally, Spanish boys wear Navy sailor suits whereas the girls wear white gowns much like that of a bridesmaid’s and the twins follow suit. Although, on top of their pristine outfits, both of them wear orange tinted glasses which shade their eyes. The fact that the audience cannot watch their wandering attention and guidance on ‘who’ or ‘what’ they will act upon next creates a very paranoid undertone for the viewer.

Finally, what I believe is the most spine-chilling costume co-ord is their funeral dress. Already laden with veins of morbidity and darkness, funeral dress encases the children in a final veil of mania. We are first acquainted with Tin who creeps forward with a lifeless black tie as the spine of his crisp white shirt and black blazer, buttoned to perfection. His unblemished knees are exposed by black shorts, creating a shrill juxtaposition against his chalky skin. Tina, on the other hand, wears a black dress deprived of any shape or structure. The straight cut is embellished with a large white lace collar stemming from a round neck. The delicate detail inscribed into the dark background resonates strongly with their devout Christian beliefs and evokes memories of the children’s behaviour over the course of the film, leaving the audience with a chilling aftertaste.

Along with great Halloween couple costume ideas, I think it’s safe to say, twinning outfits will always be eerie. It’s the fact that the costumes usually appear crisp, flawless to a fault, which makes them so disturbing. They are so unusual and abnormal to the average everyday wearer where you may or may not be bothered to iron that shirt you wore last week. If it is the inhumane and unnatural that really frightens us as spectators, then make like Marie Kondo! It’s tidiness and presentation that is surely going to make us horrified this Spooktober!

The actual dresses used in The Shining. God those twins are terrifying” by stealthpooch is licensed under CC BY-NC-ND 2.0.