I dare ya! Ask a question!
My Least Favorite Trope (and this post will include spoilers for The Lego Movie, Guardians of the Galaxy, The Matrix, Western Civilization, and—cod help me—Bulletproof Monk*.) is the thing where there’s an awesome, smart, wonderful, powerful female character who by all rights ought to be the Chosen One and the hero of the movie, who is tasked with taking care of some generally ineffectual male character who is, for reasons of wish fulfillment, actually the person the film focuses on. She mentors him, she teaches him, and she inevitably becomes his girlfriend… and he gets the job she wanted: he gets to be the Chosen One even though she’s obviously far more qualified. And all he has to do to get it and deserve it is Man Up and Take Responsibility.
And that’s it. Every god-damned time. The mere fact of naming the films above and naming the trope gives away the entire plot and character arc of every single movie.”
If there’s one thing I’m sick of hearing, it’s this idea that every male character represents wish fulfillment for the male writer or male audience viewer. Are you going to tell me with a straight face that the Lego Movie writers had wishes or dreams of having a Lego toy girlfriend who leaves Batman for them?
You assume that is what the writer wants out of life. It’s not fair to the writer nor the character when you assume that they write to fulfill wishes. Then we might as well assume every story is wish fulfillment and it becomes a moot point to argue.
You argue that the female character should be the chosen one because they are capable and they deserve it more. Where does the story go if we have a super smart, super strong, awesome character as our protagonist? What kind of satisfying transformation can they go under? Makes for a boring story.
Not because she’s female but because she knows everything and is very capable. I don’t think the Lego Movie would have worked if Wyldstyle in her current form was the protagonist. We’d have to flesh her out a lot more We end up with a very different movie if we go in this direction. Is it a better movie? Hard to say.
What your criticism of their films should be is that the female mentor/girlfriend is a shallow character. She serves to kick ass but have a soft side too. Pretty flat. But then most of the character sort of are. Is this completely on the writer? Remember when it comes to a movie, the writer can be rewritten and overruled.
Corporate meddling has hurt many stories. .I’ve read many blogs on writers in media trying to stand their ground creatively and getting the boot. We can’t assume that this set up of shallow female mentor/girlfriend is all Phil Lord and Christopher Miller’s fault.
I can’t believe I wrote this much about gender issues in a movie about building toy blocks with Batman. Also Gamora was not Peter Quill’s girlfriend at the end. I don’t see how she fits in with the other examples you listed.
Fun read though. Made me think. Made me want to write.
Halfway through Act Two. Draft 4. Been here three times before. Why is everything so different this time? How could this happen to me? I’ve gone completely off my original outline. It’s like the train has gone off the tracks and we’re spiraling straight into hell.
hmm, yoga is kind of girly #nohomo
let’s rename it so it sounds manlier and make it just for the bros
for the bros only
WHY DO MEN NEED TO REBRAND EVERYTHING TOUCHED BY WOMEN?
SIT DOWN AND EAT YOUR YOGURT AND SALAD AND DO YOUR YOGA
FOLLOW UP YOUR INTENSE BROGA SESSION WITH SOME BROGURT AND A BRAH-LAD
Men need to tone up their fragile masculinity.
THIS IS THE POST
Psh. You girls are tots jealous that Broga is going to be tots better than boring old Yoga. Can’t wait to sign up for this one.