The Manipulative Woman in Sci-Fi: Bending Time and People to Her Will


Individually, each film presents interesting, tough, somewhat complex female characters – which could be considered feminist in its own right. Taken together, however, I can’t help but see a pervasive trend that doesn’t reflect well on women. Why do filmmakers see women as master manipulators so readily? Is it simply because they believe women to be cold and calculating? Or, conversely, are they relying on audiences not seeing how tricky these women are, banking on their innocent façades to make the ending a real surprise (i.e. the ‘Basic Instinct’ effect)?

We Need to Talk About Tara: ‘The Walking Dead’ and Queer Body Positivity

The Walking Dead_Tara and Denise

…To have a relationship like Tara and Denise’s was such a glorious prize. Moreover, in a time where femininity is so ensnared in the constant rhetoric surrounding the sizing of women’s bodies, and fixating on labels and valorizing or castigating a language of weight and body image that completely reduces feminine identity, to have two strong and two queer women feature prominently in a way that refuses to submit to those standards and dialogues is such a boon in so many regards.

The Roundup: ‘Game of Thrones’

Game of Thrones_Sansa Stark

Check out all of the posts from our ‘Game of Thrones’ Theme Week here.

‘Game of Thrones’: Is Jon Snow Too Feminine for the Masculine World?

Game of Thrones_Jon Snow

Whilst ostensibly male in terms of gender, Jon Snow’s character is arguably definably feminine through his actions, motivations and interactions with both female and male characters. … This is not to suggest that Jon’s character is not masculine; certainly his actions in battle signal him to be a hero in the archetypical sense, but I am suggesting that Jon Snow’s masculinity coexists with a feminine expression…

“Love No One But Your Children”: Cersei Lannister and Motherhood on ‘Game of Thrones’

Game of Thrones_Cersei Lannister 2

Cersei Lannister is cunning, deceitful, jealous and entirely about self-preservation. Yet, her show self seems to tie these exclusively with her relationship with her children… Why is motherhood the go-to in order to flesh out her character? Why can’t she be separate from her children, the same way the father of them, Jaime Lannister, is?

‘Game of Thrones’: Catelyn Stark and Motherhood Tropes

Game of Thrones_Catelyn Stark

Catelyn Stark’s main function in the show is to be a mother to Robb Stark, a prominent male character, whereas in the book series, ‘A Song of Ice and Fire,’ she is so much more than that. … The show creators are here relying on mother tropes in order to set up the characters; Catelyn is now the nag who only cares about her family and nothing else, whereas Ned is now the valiant hero who wants to seek justice.

When Brienne Met Jaime: The Rom-Com Hiding in ‘Game of Thrones’

Game of Thrones _ Brienne and Jamie

But in that web of gloom, there’s this beautiful shining light: Brienne and Jaime. And while rom-coms are not often praised for their realism, to me, this couple is the most grounded, sensible thing about the show.

Why I Will Miss Ygritte’s Fierce Feminism on ‘Game of Thrones’

Ygritte in The North

Ygritte was fierce, she was vibrant, and she didn’t take any shit. Ygritte’s feminism was multi-dimensional, and for me she will always be missed.

‘Game of Thrones’: Does It Feel Worse to Cheer For or Against Daenerys?

Game of Thrones Daenerys Targaryen

It’s hard to ignore that this is a white woman from a foreign nation who feels it’s her birthright to teach a bunch of brown people how they should behave. … On the flip side, watching a woman lose power on ‘Game of Thrones’ always seems to involve watching her be sexually victimized somehow, which I can’t really get on board with, no matter how awful she is.

Let’s Talk About the Children: War and the Loss of Innocence on ‘Game of Thrones’

Game of Thrones_Arya Stark season 4

Children have always figured prominently in ‘Game of Thrones,’ but their presence seems especially meaningful this [fourth] season, as we get a clearer glimpse of the war’s effect on bystanders, people not entrenched in political intrigue and behind-the-scenes strategizing.

Bowed, Bent, and Broken: Examining the Women of Color on ‘Game of Thrones’

Game of Thrones_women of color

With the women of color being so scarce in the show, it’s just as important to look at the quality of these portrayals. While ‘Game of Thrones’ does give us some strong women of color, many of them are portrayed problematically in their own ways: either put into subservient roles, exoticized, demonized, or otherwise discarded by the narrative in ways that the white characters aren’t.

A Black Feminist Woman’s Life in Comedy Web Series ‘Sit Black & Relax’

Sit Back and Relax webseries

This series expands the often narrow variety of roles for Black Women in film, and allows them to be what we rarely see — normal.