This movie explores several classic camp subcategories, including goth camp, regular villain camp, and “camp but it was all a show.” That’s fine, but if I were to teach a camp class (something my university actually had and which several students infamously took to thinking it was about camping), Dr. Volumni Gaul’s photo would be at the top of the syllabus. This woman made a vat of iridescent, rainbow-colored venomous snakes for fun, then matched her stylish gloves to the snakes as she showed them off to the world. This woman calls the idea of killing teenagers a wonderful experiment and (admittedly this one is less important) has zero sense of personal space.
Given every creative-sadistic element of The Hunger Games, it makes sense that the person in charge would be the most chaotic, twisted scientist we can imagine. But no amount of imagination can prepare us for Davis’ performance, a wildly unusual embodiment of a woman who is a walking series of red flags. As Dr. Gaul, she has one dark blue eye (a biohacking experiment gone wrong?), impressive curly hair, damn wet gloves, and makeup that accentuates her facial features like a pop art comic.
Davis could have just shown up in this outfit and taken the top spot on this list because of her character’s aesthetic, but she also pushed the limits with her crazy outfit. Dr. Gaul may not be the only villain in this movie, but he’s certainly the character I’d least like to be trapped in a room with – unless it was to be an avant-garde fashion show, in which case she’d deserve an Anna Wintour-level place of honor. This is camp!
“The Hunger Games: The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes” is now available in theaters.