Friday, April 4, 2008

Usually these kind of speeches are made by Winifred and I nod, to say, Yes, but it isn't like that, can't I enjoy it anyway? I foolishly did that with The Dangerous Book for Boys thinking foolishly that The Daring Book for Girls would actually be The Dangerouns Book for Boys II, you know, a "We made an error! Here's more exciting stuff! And fun things are for both genders!" I was wrong. So when Feministing linked to Gender Inequity in 'Whoville' I thought of Winifred, who would have been irate about the film's newly added plot.

It makes me wonder how she fared through Disney princess movies until Beauty and the Beast was released when I was seven. Until then Winifred had little to say, probably because I was interested in dog movies (Lassie, 101 Dalmatians, Benji), but when Belle arrived, with her nose in a book, Winifred spent years expounding on how wonderful it was that Belle Saved the Day, the Belle Read, that Belle Was Independent! It was true. Belle didn't need no man. Buzz off Gaston, I'm Reading!

Except this is very much a rant from The King. I told myself I'd leave The King out of the blog, because The King sees Blogs as A Means For Your Own Doom, and didn't sign up for this, but I think it's worth saying today that The King is like Peter Sagal. The King has standards and it would be better to meet them. I could hear the king say this:

Have the clowns who made this movie ever met a daughter? Have they dated one? If they did, did they meet the daughter's father? Did they then ask that daughter's father if there was anything more dramatic, interesting, arresting, and moving to him than his relationship with his daughter? Did they ask him if he might find that a close relationship with said daughter might be something he would care about? What do they imagine that we do — sit around, and watch our daughters grow and change and suffer and fail and triumph — and idly wish for something more INTERESTING?
Segal then goes on to list popular media--Harry Potter, The Matrix, Peter Pan, ET, Star Wars, Lord of the Rings--as having boys saving the world. Of all of those features, on Harry Potter has a female character worth emulating. The other females (if they're there at all--LOOKING AT YOU, TOLKEIN) are all pretty dopey. I always wanted Princess Leia to step up! Darth Vader is her father too! But instead her few moments of badassery are restrained to a bikini. And Han, the rogue with a heart of gold (le sigh) has to bumble his way into saving her. I love Han, but really? Leia, you couldn't have done that on your own?

I had a friend in town a few weeks ago and he asked if I was going to see Whoville. I snorted and said I couldn't see a movie that would butcher the classic. Now I'm glad I was too snobby to see it, because I'd probably go out of my way to ruin it for everyone else.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Dude - I TOTALLY heard this on NPR the other day!