There are a litany of rules for surviving horror movies. Blog posts around the internet dedicate themselves to deciphering what not to do if you have any chance of surviving a masked killer or extraterrestrial being. Intuitively you know what these are. Whenever you watch a character announce, “I’ll be right back,” or roll around in the sheets, you assume their time is ending shortly.
In John Carpenter’s iconic slasher Halloween, babysitter Laurie Strode breaks one of those cardinal rules—don’t do drugs or drink alcohol. Played by Scream Queen Jamie Lee Curtis, Laurie shares a few puffs from a joint riding around town with her friend Nancy. Though Nancy pays the price for her horror movie misdeeds, Laurie does not.
Curtis reprises her role as Laurie in the Halloween reboot, which is in theaters now. While promoting the movie, the actress discussed the origins of her character and she “was the archetype that had to be the center of that story, which is an innocent girl, without boyfriends, without experience.”
According to Curtis, the original Halloween movie is about the innocence of babysitting—where parents entrust their children’s lives to someone who’s basically their peers—perverted by this unadulterated evil in the form of Michael Myers.
“She’s the good girl, even though she did smoke pot, which is such an anomaly for a good girl,” Curtis said. “But the way she smokes it, you can see she’s not experienced. She coughs and she sort of blows it.”
That lack of inexperience, that innocence is ultimately what redeems Laurie to survive against Michael Myers. So if you ever find yourself in a horror movie, remember—don’t inhale. It might save your life.