There are so many things to get excited about in the new Ghostbusters reboot, from the hilarious cast to the grade-A special effects to the stellar soundtrack. But one recent specific source of excitement has been the necklace that Kate McKinnon wears in Ghostbusters, with fans and fashionists alike raving about Dr. Jillian Hotlzmann's look. McKinnon rocks a ton of zany pieces as Dr. Holtzmann, one of which is a curious-looking necklace that appears to be symbolic. So if you're thinking about replicating the costume for Halloween, you might be wondering what McKinnon's Ghostbusters necklace means.
The piece is vaguely reminiscent of Katniss' mockingjay pin in The Hunger Games, and its symbolism might seem puzzling at first glance. However, a closer look reveals a simple pun. The necklace features a chunky silver chain from which hangs a circular pendant. Within the pendant is a capital letter "U", and going through the letter diagonally is a screw. So, Dr. Holtzmann's signature necklace simply means "screw you." It's a straightforward visual joke, but also a testament to the character's uninhibited nature and in-your-face mannerisms. And, in my personal opinion, it feels like part of a bigger statement about the movie in general and the hate it's received from some "fans." As McKinnon told Bustle back in 2015, “It's a screw and the letter U, so if you put them together, that says a little bit.”
As you may know, there was a wave of backlash about the all-female reboot of the 1984 comedy. But instead of crumbling underneath the criticism, the Ghostbusters team set out to make a movie that emphasized comedy over the gender of its characters. And the Ghostbusters costumes are a perfect example of that. Instead of wearing tight catsuits or skin-bearing outfits, the Ghostbusters stars sport loose jumpsuits similar to those worn by the cast in the original film. Moreover, each character has other outfits that show off her personality as opposed to showing off her cleavage.
McKinnon's character in particular is a great example of how Ghostbusters' costuming makes a feminist statement. Her character is a scientist, but doesn't look like the "typical" female movie scientist who you might imagine wears a lab coat with heels, glasses, and an updo that's just waiting to be unclipped to reveal a glossy mane. Holtzmann sports glasses, but they're round, psychedelic-yellow goggles. She has a a signature coif, but it's more "mad scientist" than Marilyn Monroe. In fact, as The Verge noted, Dr. Holtzmann's appearance greatly resembles that of the brainy Dr. Egon in the Ghostbusters cartoons of the '80s and '90s. It's a weird, awesome look, and it's symbolic of both the character's, and McKinnon's, personalities. As the star told Bustle, “I think the character is like me and that is kind of upsetting because she’s weird and I think she is basically just me. And people might not believe that what they’re seeing is an actual person but she’s just me. “
Additionally, Holtzmann's funky outfits show that she has no interested in catering to societal norms. She is eccentric and unashamed, and this is reflected in her bold fashion choices as well as her behavior. In this way, her necklace screams "screw you" to anyone who takes issue with the way she lives her life. And in the bigger picture, I see her necklace also as triumphant "screw you" to anyone who takes issue with the casting choices of the new Ghostbusters. So, here's the real question: where can I order one?
Images: Columbia Pictures, Giphy (3)