Women in Refrigerators
…I’m left with the feeling that Tom Ford’s second feature film is a love letter to sexist movies instead. … Like a lot of sexist stories, ‘Nocturnal Animals’ is vague about its attitude toward women, because it doesn’t truly regard women as anything but objects – things that derive meaning only through their relationship to the real subjects, men.
Lois Lane represents a more achievable kind of strength for us mere mortals. Tenacity, self-reliance, and quick wits – these are the weapons of choice for the archetypal career woman bent on “having it all.” … Any writer that reduces Lois Lane down to little more than human Kryptonite thoroughly misrepresents her rich 75-year history as an important pop cultural icon to women.
Barbara Gordon as Oracle is a more accurate and positive representation of people with disabilities. She’s way more real because despite the fact that she sometimes needs the help of more able-bodied people, like a real person living with paralysis from the waist down, she still lives a positive and active life.
So while ‘Arrow’ seems pretty reluctant to move away from the traditional stance on women existing to be love interests and to be rescued, the individual female characters themselves sometimes show some hints of progressiveness… if only they’d be allowed to live long enough!
Irene Adler never needed Sherlock Holmes or any man (including the Czech King who hired Sherlock to face her in the first place), and when she finds love (with a man who is neither the king nor Holmes), it’s on her terms. Irene Adler only appears in one of Conan Doyle’s stories because she has her own life, and it does not rotate around nor even involve Sherlock Holmes. She is a clever, intelligent, resourceful, sex-positive woman in control of her own life, her own body, and her own destiny, and deserves not only a writer to do her justice, but a series to completely center her and all her fantastic escapades.
When looked at as a trilogy, the ‘Taken’ films are all about Bryan’s relationship with his daughter as she becomes a woman and he is no longer sure how to relate to her. It’s a common real life situation writ large, and a wholly unexpected through-line for an action franchise.
The show expertly demonstrates how the show’s female characters find ways to move through a world that refuses them power or autonomy. Because of this, I’m very surprised and disappointed that the show chose to have its title character violently raped as a way to advance the plot.
Check out what we’ve been reading this week–and let us know what you’ve been reading/writing in the comments!
Michonne in The Walking Dead Written by Megan Kearns | Warning: spoilers ahead! So the season 3 finale of The Walking Dead. What can I say? Is there less sexism than last season’s appalling anti-abortion storyline with Lori’s pregnancy? Did the addition of badass Michonne change the gender dynamics? I’m going to warn you right […]
The Descendants (2011) Amber’s Take: I went into The Descendants knowing only: George Clooney, land inheritance, and Hawaii. Had I even taken the time to visit IMDb and read the one-line synopsis (“A land baron tries to re-connect with his two daughters after his wife suffers a boating accident.”), I would have known a […]
Anita Sarkeesian of the Web site Feminist Frequency, a site that analyzes pop culture from a feminist perspective, recently completed her fabulous, six-part video series on Tropes vs. Women. She explains that, “A trope is a common pattern in a story or a recognizable attribute in a character that conveys information to the audience. A […]