Procrastination with a point

Yes I’m procrastinating horribly. I shouldn’t be. I am. It’s horrible, I know. But, to be fair you would too if you’ve had the week I’ve had.

For today, anyway.

So, as I sit here excited to watch Pixar’s BRAVE this Saturday, I’ve been thinking.

What’s the hangup about women?

Seriously.

Okay, wait, hold on. Before I get run out of town, let me explain.

There are high hopes among women about BRAVE. There’s a consensus that Disney should really put out a Princess movie where the Princess doesn’t give a damn about finding her prince, getting married, or generally caring about ‘traditional’ female roles.

No pressure, honey.

I can understand, and I’m one of them to a point. I get annoyed when the princess is pretty, perfect, and magically everything happens for her. She gets the handsome prince, the love of the people, the castle, the money. Everything.

In a book, the Princess is known by another name: Mary Sue. Perfection incarnate. Everything happens around her rather than she taking the time out of her day to influence events and change them if necessary.

It sucks. It puts a damper on women everywhere and perpetuates the stereotype that pretty is the way to go because once you get a man everything in your life will be peachy keen. But only if you’re pretty.

There’s always a catch

We, as women, know it’s all a lie. Everything that Disney stands for with their Princess line is a big, fat marketing lie designed to sell pink frilly things that have no discernible place on daughter’s shelves in any way, shape or form if she is to be a well rounded woman.

And yet the Princess line is the top grossing merchandise Disney offers, with mothers and daughters lining up at the ‘Princess Boutique’, checkbook in hand, to give their daughter’s a makeover. To make them feel like a Princess for a day.

Twilight [still]  has forty year old women swooning**. There were t-shirts for Chrissakes, letting people choose which one of two men they wanted Bella to choose.

Is there a third option?

E.L.James has stormed through the erotica world with her S&M book. Women are gobbling it up en masse.**

Why?

I see similarities here. The Princess movies featured a girl who had little to do but look pretty and get into a ridiculous situation from which she had to be saved by a handsome prince. Once saved, the princess lived happily ever.

Twilight and 50 Shades follow the same formula. With a minor difference. There’s the ‘saved princess’ no doubt, but the prince is just downright creepy. To the point where any normal human would look at the relationship the heroines insist on keeping and scream “RUN, BITCH, RUN!”

The books are terribly written, poorly edited, have a lacklustre protagonist whose qualities consist of stumbling over themselves in a pathetic attempt to be ‘relateable.’

Yet they’re being gobbled up like cold pizza after a LAN party.

There are debates. TIME Magazine printed an article on 50 Shades declaring that ‘that’s what working women want’ [in a relationship].  On one side there are women claiming that the books are the best things ever, that they’re in love with Edward/Christian/Jacob. I remember a forum post where a girl was in a turmoil because her boyfriend was more like Jacob and she had to break up with him because Edward was her one true love.

On the other side, there are women are demanding  ‘strong females that get to choose what they want’! Chests puffed out, screaming their war cries, decrying anything that is ‘feminine’ or ‘degrading’ to women, these few demand results from movies/books. They want a woman who makes her own choices, who doesn’t settle down, who is in control of her own fate.

I’m just sayin.

Admittedly, I’m getting tired of seeing books with a great idea wind up ruined because the author doesn’t have enough imagination to give her female character a will of her own.

I’m sick of hearing about how awesome Bella is, how romantic Twi-Shades are, how they’re a love story of the highest caliber.

I’m also sick and tired of hearing how Disney is corrupting little girls.

But, while I may be personally tired of it all, I don’t think it’s right to shun others choices. Yes, Twi-Shades is terrible. Yes Disney has made millions of dollars corrupting little girls. Yes, Hollywood is a bunch of out-of-touch losers who follow the same formula over and over again.

But, you know, that’s what we have indies for. To push the limit, break the mold, bend and twist the rules to where they’ll have to be identified by their dental records. And maybe somewhere down the line we got too involved with movies and books, too involved with dissection that it became more about the subliminal than what was on the screen or on the page.

Sometimes the f**king curtain is blue.

Toodles!

 

 

**The author is speaking in generalities.

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8 thoughts on “Procrastination with a point

  1. Bubbe says:

    I haven’t read or seen the Twilight series and when I first heard about 50 shades I cringed – yuck! I know people really enjoy them but none of them were attractive to me. One of my favorite television shows was Saving Grace. It was raunchy and wild (more in the first season than later) but Grace was my ideal strong role model. She loved men and sex but she didn’t NEED a man; she was fine on her own. Better than fine; Holly Hunter portrayed her and made her extremely genuine.

    On the DIsney princesses topic, I don’t know whether you’re familiar with singer Sara Bareilles. One of her songs is Fairytale, in which she talks about Cinderella and Sleeping Beauty and what comes after the “Happily Ever After”. I love this part: “Sleeping Beauty’s in a foul mood… I’d rather sleep my whole life away because you keep me from dreaming.” Nice commentary on finding the prince, right? 😀

    Thanks, I love it when you post stuff that makes me think and count my blessings.

    1. rjkeith says:

      I am *so* downloading that song now. So much awesome. Personally, I can’t stand either of the series, despite never having read 50 Shades. Knowing its a Twilight fanfic with older versions of Bella and Edward and kinked sex is enough for me to die slowly inside. I actually watched Saving Grace for a while! That show was awesome!

  2. Yvonne Hertzberger says:

    Hear, hear. There a few exceptions. A Toronto woman wrote a children’s book called “The Paper Bag Princess”. She is strong, strong willed and definitely not your simpering eye batting diva who needs a man to save her.

  3. MCV EGAN says:

    When Disney’s Little Mermaid came out I was furious that it was so distant from what Hans Christian Andersen wrote. In the real story the little mermaid accomplishes a spiritual victory whilst loosing her very life. Her actions have huge and strong consequences…which would not have sold a single princess outfit!
    I do not care for Erotica but have many around me facsinated with 50 shades of gray. I understand the premise and it FREAKS me out when people call it “a love story” a woman willing to sign a contract to be a sexual slave? A love story? As well as if keeping true to the story a movie were made…X-rated..so the books are mainstream pornography.
    I just spent a couple of weeks in the UK and saw just as many women fascinated by the princess effect where in tourists attractions princess outfits were sold..not far from where Anne Bolyen was beheaded by her prince charming! 🙂
    Great piece and I particularly lie the light at the end of the tunnel image!
    Bravo!
    M.C.V. Egan
    http:www.thebridgeofdeaths.com

    1. rjkeith says:

      Hah! Irony! Oh, that’s so sadly funny. I was little when The Little Mermaid came out. I liked it as a kid and was heartbroken when I read Hans Christiansen’s tale. You know, because I wanted the Mermaid to get with her prince. Now that I’m older, I prefer the fairy tale because I understand it and can appreciate it more. As much as I love Disney (the movies, not the channel) I actually prefer writing my own fairy tales, *because* I can make my heroines strong and self-reliant.

      1. M.C.V. Egan says:

        Bravo! May your stories succeed and be know as long as Mr. Andersen’s. I was 22 when I read the “real” one and had read very diluted or changed versions, I was in my 30s when the Disney version appeared! LONG LIVE YOUR Strong Heroines!

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