Captain America

How ‘Captain America: Civil War’ Crystallizes the Problems with Marvel Movies


I realized that while I had ultimately enjoyed ‘Captain America: Civil War,’ it exemplified the worst tendency of the Marvel Cinematic Universe — namely, the avoidance of dramatic risk and legitimate emotional stakes in order to create and maintain a sense of delight and entertaining status quo.

Why Black Widow Is the “Realest” Superheroine of the Marvel Cinematic Universe (Yes, Even After All Those Tropes)

Black Widow in 'Captain America: Civil War'

It is this factor alone why Black Widow is so important. She is the longest standing female protagonist within the Marvel film franchise, having starred in ‘Iron Man 2,’ ‘The Avengers,’ ‘Captain America: The Winter Soldier,’ ‘Avengers: Age of Ultron’ and most recently, ‘Captain America: Civil War.’ She was the only female Avenger in both Avengers films (until Scarlet Witch switched sides at the end of ‘Age of Ultron’), and as such was subject to being the onscreen vessel of female representation in a superhero super-team otherwise occupied by straight white men.

Top 10 Posts of 2015

2015 New Years Eve fireworks image via pixabay (no attribution required:

Counting down from 10 to 1, here are the 10 most-read posts in 2015 that were written in 2015.

“Did I Step on Your Moment?” The Seductive and Psychological Violence of Female Superheroes


This style of fighting codes our female superheroes as half menacing and half attractive – we are meant to be afraid of them, but also enticed by them. Their violence is inextricably linked to their sexuality.

The Capaldi Conundrum: How We Attack the Female Gaze


In any fandom based on visual media, fangirls are attacked because of the way the female gaze is misunderstood and misrepresented.

Bitch Flicks’ Weekly Picks


Check out what we’ve been reading this week–and let us know what you’ve been reading/writing in the comments!

Top 10 Superheroine Movies That Need a Reboot

Superheroines everywhere!

We all know that male superheroes get reboots for their (often shitty) movies over and over and over again. There are an ever-increasing number of Batman, Superman, and Hulk movies, not to mention a growing franchise of Iron Man, Captain America, and Thor flicks. With this mentality of quantity over quality, there’s no excuse for denying reboots to some of my favorite female superheroines and their considerably fewer films. Some of the movies that made my top 10 list admittedly sucked, and their heroines deserve a second chance to shine on the big screen. Some of the movies, however, were, are and ever shall be totally awesome, and I just want a do-over to enhance the awesome.

The Women of ‘Captain America: The Winter Soldier’

Scarlett Johansson as Black Widow in Captain America: The Winter Soldier

As I wrote last week, I love me some Peggy Carter, and worried about how ‘Captain America: The Winter Soldier’ would fare (mostly) without her. So I was pumped that Peggy not only appears from the past (interviewed in a video presentation in the Smithsonian exhibit on Captain America), but as an ailing nonagenarian Steve still calls “his best girl.”

And even better, the other women in the film are all some shade of awesome. I wanted more from all of them, but I’m greedy like that.

The Best Part of ‘Captain America’ is in the Past: An Appreciation of Peggy Carter

Hayley Atwell as Peggy Carter

Following my geek programming, I re-watched ‘The First Avenger’ in preparation for ‘The Winter Soldier.’ And I was reminded of the sad truth that the best parts of the first flick can’t carry on to this one, because they’re in the 1940s and now Steve Rogers is in the present.

And the best of the left-behind best is Peggy Carter, Hayley Atwell’s British intelligence agent working with the Scientific Strategic Reserve, a precursor to S.H.I.E.L.D. As a British woman surrounded by American military men, Peggy obviously sticks out, but she’s so self-possessed, confident, and skilled that it doesn’t seem far-fetched for her to be in the inner-circle. It’s wonderful to see how the higher-ups, even cad Howard Stark (Tony’s dad) and crotchety Col. Phillips, accept her presence and authority implicitly. The enlisted men who give her guff are quickly put in their place by her tendency to shoot at things that annoy her, which somehow comes across as less reckless than it actually is, probably because she’s so generally competent.