7456 Melrose Avenue, Fairfax, Los Angeles
Dead Skin is from the perspective of seventeen-year-old Andie, a human sponge for connection, unaware of the neglect she’s endured from all spheres of her life, causing her immense intimacy issues; a simple touch to her hand sends Andie into a spiral of hypersexuality and self-hatred simultaneously. Approaching her eighteen birthday, Andie decides that she needs to find her mother to cure her maternal pain; Andie sees visions of her mother everywhere and plays out how her mother and father met in the convenience store she works at. This plot is mirrored by Andie falling for her best friend Maggie, her first queer love that also plays out in the convenience store. Audrey, Henry’s younger wife tries to help Andie navigate this journey of self-discovery but Andie refuses to see the humanity masked underneath Audrey’s bimbo bravado. As these visceral, parallel love stories progress, Andie’s romanticised vision of those around her begins to crackle. On the crux of Andie ‘meeting’ her idealised vision of her mother, Andie’s whole world explodes, her mother is dead and her understanding of the world is actually a skewed hallucination of what she wanted it to be. Andie is left in the aftermath of her first psychotic break, her psychosis, with no one, except Audrey, the one person who genuinely loves Andie. Andie is forced to choose whether she will fall into a cycle of self-destructive psychosis or if she will deal with her mental health and discover true, raw, visceral love for the first time in her life; Andie’s own sense of self.