uberreiniger: (shedding wings)
The prompts )

Day Twenty-Three: Favorite female platonic relationship - The reason this entry has taken so long is because I have actually been trying to come up with an answer for this one for several days and I can't. So I give up on it. Because I don't really know what is meant by "platonic relationship." Is it only friendships where there has never been an attraction? Do exes count? What if the attraction is there but they've had "the talk" and have decided to just remain friends. Honestly, I think people are misled by the term "platonic" into thinking it means sexual attraction is not and has never been an issue. It's there, you just choose not to act on it. This makes it problematic for me in storytelling because I like stories where the decision to act on that tension is part of their character arc. Friendships where attraction never matters tend to not be memorable to me. So whatever, I pass on this one.

Day Twenty-Four: Favorite female romantic relationship - I'm going to assume this means favorite romantic relationship as seen from the female's point of view rather than favorite romantic relationship between two female, if only because the latter leaves a very narrow list of options.

My vote goes to Lily's (Mia Sara) relationship with Jack (Tom Cruise) in the fantasy film Legend. You know, that movie where Satan (Tim Curry) is trying to kill unicorns. They didn't make Lily a damsel in distress but they didn't make her an action heroine either. She uses her wits and actually manages to beguile the Prince of Darkness. That's pretty badass. And she does it all in the name of love and atoning for a mistake that she's made. All the while Jack is trying to get to her and never stops believing in her, even at a crucial moment where she seems to have gone over to the dark side for real. I don't care how much you hate Tom Cruise. Listen to his younger self as he pleads "I trust you, Lily!" and I dare you not to shiver.

Day Twenty-Five: Favorite mother/daughter and/or sister relationship - I already listed Ellen Ripley from the Alien films as my favorite all-time heroine. Then I realized that because she is my favorite heroine that means I can technically list her as many times as I want. I mean, she's my all-around favorite, right? That means she's good at lots of things.

Ripley and Newt aren't biologically related but that's why watching the mother/daughter relationship that forms between them (and which is not even directly addressed in words save for one exclamation by Newt at the end,) is so fascinating. Aliens probably has more explosions per minute than any film about a mother and her daughter ever made and that relationship never stops being what is at the film's heart no matter how many times Bill Paxton reminds us that we're fucked and that it's game over.
uberreiniger: (Warrior)
The prompts )

Day Twenty-One: Favorite female character screwed over by canon I choose Libby from Lost and every Lost fan knows why. With her the writers dangled one of the most interesting plot hooks in the show's history in front of the viewer only to come out and literally say later that they had simply decided not to do it anymore. On a show as big and intricate as Lost it's impossible not to have some things get shelved permanently, but in Libby's case it was was over the top. And yes they sort of addressed it in the show's last few episodes, enough to give closure to what they'd created anyway, but it was nowhere near as satisfying as what could have been.

HONORABLE MENTION: LEGEND OF THE FIVE RINGS - L5R screwed over pretty much EVERY character involved during its notorious Hidden Emperor story arc but the heavy-hitting female leads got it worst of all. Bayushi Kachiko, at one point the game setting's primary viewpoint character/antagonist was revealed to have a kharmic link to a demigod in the setting. This got shuffled into the background and dealt with in an afterthought short fiction that wasn't even publicized. The list goes one, full of names no one recognizes: Isawa Ozuki, Doji Shizue, Daidoji Rekai, Shiba Tsukune. Just trust me when I say each one had enough awesome to be the hero of an epic novel series of her own and each one got swept under the rug in the scope of conflict that made no sense and was barely explained.

Day Twenty-Two: Favorite female character you love but everyone else hates - If I'm lucky enough to like a piece of fiction that other people I know do we usually all like the same things. However, I read on TV Tropes that apparently the Pirates of the Caribbean fandom loathes Elizabeth Swan for the mere fact that she exists and therefore gets in the way of all their little boy-on-boy fanfic fantasies about the male leads. Too bad fandom! She's a lady pirate and you know how I feel about those. Eilizabeth's a bad ass and she's here to stay so all you little fanfic girls can take your Jack Sparrows and Will Turners and suck it. I know you want to anyway.
uberreiniger: (Wayfarer)
LOL, I don't even know how many days I'm back up now but I'm not giving up!

The prompts )

Day Eighteen: Favorite non-warrior female character - Swan, the semi-eponymous heroine of Robert McCammon's post-nuclear fantasy epic Swan Song. She is a girl with the power to make plants grow and therefore is the key to repairing the radioactive world. Unfortunately, in addition to your garden variety post-apocalyptic warlords raiding and enslaving their way across the landscape there is also a demonic force interested in keeping things exactly as they are. Swan is a true pacifist and sickens at the notion of even having anyone shed blood to defend her person. Needless to say, things get very interesting for everyone involved in her life and she winds up with some interesting choices to make.

Day Nineteen: Favorite non-human female character - Shale from Dragon Age: Origins. Depending on the dialogue options you choose it is possible to spend almost the entire game not knowing that the cheerfully homicidal stone golem in your party is in fact female. Cheerful sociopaths who gleefully remind you that they'd love to murder you if they could get away with it shouldn't be endearing or make you like them. Shale is noteworthy because they pull it off with her.

Day Twenty: Favorite female antagonist - The God from the Silent Hill games. It's always God, never Goddess, presumably because she can appear in whatever form those trying to incarnate her think of her as. (Yes, that means if you think of J. Edgar Hoover, J. Edgar Hoover will appear and destroy us all.) But in-game texts and characters always refer to her as female regardless. And she is just... well, she is responsible in one way or another for EVERYTHING in Silent Hill. That should say it all right there.
uberreiniger: (Warrior)
I got behind with the holiday. I think I can be forgiven.
The prompts... )

Day Fifteen: Favorite female character growth arc: Tough call but I think I'm going to have to go with Nynaeve from The Wheel of Time if for no other reason because Robert Jordan introduces her as completely unbearable for both the reader and the other characters and quickly makes her over into something much more interesting than the the one-dimensional nagging shrew she starts out as. Her terrible temper becomes bother her greatest strength and greatest weakness and it's no longer just nails on a chalkboard for a reader every time she opens her mouth. She also gets super powers and it becomes a running gag in the series that she keeps accidentally imagining herself in low-cut dresses even though she finds them morally reprehensible.

Day Sixteen: Favorite mother character Beating out Catlyn Stark by a nose is the Widow Blue from Cherie Priest's Boneshaker. Ms. Blue has become a social pariah ever since her late scientist husband unleashed a zombie apocalypse on Seattle. Now she lives in poverty working odd jobs to support her teenaged son. One day her son decides he wants to learn the truth about his father and runs off into zombie territory leaving mom no choice but to follow. It's one of the few novels I've read where motherhood is truly the core theme and it never becomes overwrought or melodramatic.

Day Seventeen: Favorite warrior female character I don't have an icon of the Shield Maid of Rohan for nothing. Eowyn is badass and believable at the same time and I think she has inspired many female fantasy heroes in the years since her creation. Stupid Witch King. Clearly he has never read Macbeth or he would know that the letter of these prophecies can be very important.
uberreiniger: (shedding wings)
The prompts. )

Day Twelve: Favorite female character in a movie. Well crap, I already listed Ripley from Aliens. Since it's my overall favorite movie I guess I'll nominate Izzy/Isabelle (Rachel Weisz) from The Fountain. I've never seen Weisz in a bad role or a bad film and I think The Fountain is her best work. She brings such incredible mortality and fragility to a character that is, in a very real sense, immortal and eternal.

Day Thirteen: Favorite Female Character in a Book. White Crow from Mary Gentle's Rats and Gargoyles. This... is a weird book. In terms of weirdness it makes China Mieville or M. John Harrison read like Dostoyevsky. White Crow makes the whole thing work. It's a story about a city ruled by the thirty-six aspects of God where humans are subservient to anthropomorphic giant rats. White Crow is a heroine of uncertain background and motivation who ties the whole crazy mess together. She's sexy without being fanservice and smart enough to go up against God without seeming like an overpowered Mary Sue. The book is hard to find but worth it if you like strong heroines in surreal settings.

Day fourteen: Favorite older female character. When you read a lot of fantasy "older" is a very relative term. The eighty year-old crone with the wart on her nose doesn't have much on the 5000 year-old elven princess in terms of wisdom and experience, right? Right. I think a favorite of mine who encompasses "older" in sense of both age and timelessness is Morgan La Fay from the Arthurian legends. She's rarely depicted as an old woman, but she is often depicted as a force belonging to an earlier time, trying to hang on to what was lost. She makes a cameo appearance at the end of Vivian Vande Velde's novel The Book of Mordred where she is depicted as a femme fatale whose appearance sometimes "slips" to show her true age when things aren't going right. It's a more outright villainous depiction of her than has become fashionable in the post-Marion Zimmer Bradley world, but I thought it spoke to a core part of her traditional characterization very well.
uberreiniger: (shedding wings)
The prompts )

Day Eleven: Favorite female character in a children’s show: I am going to date myself again here. I am from a generation of men who grew up being sexually dominated by the Baroness. G.I. Joe was a program where the Louisana bayou teemed with Australian outlaw bikers and just-out-of-Vietnam military equipment fired high powered lasers that never killed anyone. And none of us noticed. We were all too busy hoping today's episode would be that one where the Baroness and Scarlet kung-fu fight in their bikinis. When that wasn't on we had Cheetara clobbering apes, jackals, and reptiles (psychoanalytical archetypes of violent sexuality one and all,) with her phallic staff (note the elegant banana curve as she pole vaults with it.) Or there was Masters of the Universe and didn't those two coils of metal look so nice as they snaked their way around Teela's boobs? Yep, the 80's were a good time to be a boy. All the fanservice we could ever ask for and we didn't even know what it was.

My answer is none of those characters though in my prepubescent way I lusted for them all and I am not ashamed to admit it. The Baroness, Cheetara, and Teela were women you take home for the night. The woman you take home to meet your parents... Now that is Stormer from Jem and the Holograms.

I've spoken of my love for her before, I know. But it bears repeating. She was in with the show's "bad guys" but she was really good. She was sweet, compassionate, vulnerable, yet still rocked out in a bitchin' glam-punk rock band. She never got the screen time she deserved. Her role in every episode was normally to tell the other two Misfits that their latest crazy scheme wasn't such a good idea, get verbally smacked down for it, and then say nothing when she was proven right in the end. Maybe they were short-changing her, or maybe the writers knew she was too much woman for them to handle. I always hated seeing her abused by her teammates. But in the innocence of my childhood imagination I was always there for her, ready to make everything alright.
uberreiniger: (shedding wings)
The prompts... )

I have gotten myself involved in some contracting work. It's work-from-home, but time consuming so I haven't kept the female character ball rolling like I should. Here we go again.

Day Eight: Favorite female character in a comedy show If you consider a web series of strung together five minute segments a comedy show (and I do,) then I'm going with Codex from The Guild. I can't say enough nice things about Felicia Day as an actress. I think she's really brilliant. She writes for her audience, giving them exactly what they like and can relate to. At the same time she pokes fun at herself with a character that lets the audience poke fun at themselves without feeling bad about it. I think it's healthy.

Day Nine: Favorite female character in a drama show Since the Law & Order franchise tends to be my default viewing when we can't find anything else on TV I'll go with Olivia Benson from Law & Order: Special Victims Unit. SVU is a pretty overwrought show at the best of times and I feel like Mariska Hargitay brings an earthiness to her character without which the show would probably fly right off the rails. Olivia definitely radiates the strong warrior/protector/mother vibe but without coming off as an archetype or just a foil to the hot-blooded male characters.

Day Ten: Favorite female character in a scifi/supernatural show Dating myself here. Agent Scully from The X-Files. I went through my teens more than a little in love with her. She was a tough redhaired scientist who could use a gun and fought monsters. She was so badass she could even kill monsters she didn't even believe in which was most of the time. Tell me you would never fall for a woman like that and I'll call you a liar. Although I'll be honest: the whole fantasy is kind of spoiled knowing she had to film all her scenes with David Duchovny while standing on a milk crate because he's like a foot and a half taller than her in real life.
uberreiniger: (shedding wings)
The prompts... )

Day Seven: A female character that needs more screen time

I had this one answered as soon as I first saw the question days ago: Saffron from Firefly. She got two centric episodes which is the same number as fellow recurring villains Badger and Niska and got more onscreen time than either of them so she certainly wasn't neglected by any means. There just needed to be more of her, as there needed to be with all things Firefly. *sigh*

I really believe that had the series continued she would have gradually made the shift to regular guest star and/or permanent cast member much the same way Spike did on Buffy. It's a shame that didn't happen. And can I just say what a shame it is we never saw more of Christina Hendricks, the beautiful and talented actress who played her? Alas, I imagine she's probably working at a McDonald's or clipping coupons in a trailer somewhere. If only she had stayed in show business! Who knows what might have happened? Personally, I could see her in something period where she gets to wear lots of sexy 1940's outfits and hangs out with handsome, troubled men who smoke a lot, men who are perhaps in their own way quite mad. But c'mon, who's gonna put something like THAT on the air?
uberreiniger: (Default)
The prompts... )

Wow I got behind! Yesterday was exhausting and I couldn't make myself type anything. But now is the time for catching up.

Day Five: Favorite female character on a male-driven show I don't watch "male-driven" shows. I don't really know what the term means. To even find a show that qualifies I have to go all the way back to the original Law & Order and the character of Lieutenant Van Buren (S. Epatha Merkeson). She's a force of female authority and sensibility that never gets turned into a mother figure, which is difficult to pull off. Merkeson's dry delivery of her lines really helps. She has a distinctive voice and line delivery method that speaks volumes about the character as a person despite the fact that, in true Law & Order fashion, revelations about her background and personal life are few and far between.

Day Six: Favorite female-driven show Buffy! Xena! Nah, just kidding. That would be too easy, although I do love those shows and think they're huge milestones for the depiction of women on television. But I'm actually going to go with Judging Amy, which if you don't remember it was a drama series from the early 2000's about a family court judge and her mother, a social worker. Amy Brenneman and Tyne Daly played the respective leads and were just awesome onscreen together portraying a very believable mother-daughter relationship. It was a drama that dealt with serious issues, yet I found it a great show to unwind and relax to. It's great rainy day, wrapped in a warm blanket and drinking cocoa viewing. Of course a lot of people say the same thing about Buffy and Xena but I get psyched watching those shows. Amy just puts me in a good mood.

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