svollga: (lesbian)
Even if it weren't for a good cause, this banner is too pretty not to post:
svollga: (wish)
Criminal Minds was tv-show I've always recommended as very PC in quite, dignified and clever way. It had a regular cast of 4 men and 3 women, all the women had distinct and non-stereotypical personalities, were well-respected professionals and could be good role models and examples of How You Do Women on TV (hint: as human beings). In addition, it had a lot of women (as well as people of colour) in the episode cast, in very different roles, and all of them had their own agenda and were not just token girls or helpless victims. Among other procedural shows where good female characters are a rarity, this one was a gem. It went through 5 seasons without lowering their standarts in both plot quality and passing Bechdel test. It was a very successful show even though it had a lot of force-major problems in production.

Now, the CBS company suddenly decided to cut their female cast 'for financial reasons'. One of the characters, Jennifer Jareau, an essencial member of a team who is also a mom, will be cut entirely. There's a huge possibility that plot-wise, it will be played as 'she decided to devote more time to her family', and we will lose not only a strong female character, but a female character who can balance very difficult job and family/parenthood. The other character, Emily Prentiss, a field agent, will be 'scaled down'. The one character left, Penelope Garcia, is a brilliant, quirky and interesting character (and a lovely fat girl, too!), but she is largely in a periphery, working from the home base.

The entire cast have expressed their dismay over the sudden decision, which will surely affect the story lines and the show’s audience. There's a huge apheaval among the online fans of the show, including the online petition (also supported and promoted by the cast).


Personally, I'm very sad about this new development because it was really a rare show with a full-fleged female cast, and I was hoping that the girls will be getting even more screen time and personal plot archs. This cutdown was a very unpleasant surprise. :(
svollga: (smile)
I've started watching X-Files, for the first time since 2000. I was a huge fan back then, but now, I remember little of the series.

The thing that is sort of a cultural shock to me today is the male gaze in the show (lack of it). During the first three series I've watched, Scully is wearing sensible outfits. When she's in the Bureau, she's dreassed as a business lady, no cleavage visible, shirts up to her neck, long skirts, comfortable pants. When they are in the woods she is dressed for the woods: jeans, big warm shirt, big overcoat, hair tied in a ponytale.
It's so... unusual. Today, the heroine goes into the woods dressed in skin-tight jeans and low-cut top, leaves her overcoat open (if she has one), and her hair are long on her shoulders.

Then, there was a bathroom scene in Episode 3. You know those scenes when the heroin is going to take a bath, and then shit happens? She starts the water, and sensually takes her clothes off, the camera following all the lines and curves of her body, and then she steps into the bath, and maybe there is foam covering her skin... then shit happens and she has to fight almost naked for the viewer's titillation. *yawn*
What do we have here? Scully starts the water. She's almost fully dressed, wearing her comfortably wide pants and white blouse, also rather wide and buttoned almost to her neck. She's also wearing comfortable flats. No male gaze camerawork. She is just a women filling the bath to relaz after a hard day.
Then shit happens. While she is fully dressed. Nothing is done for viewer's titillation at all. She doesn't fall into the bath, so that her blouse would become transparent and wrap her body tight. Her clothes aren't torn to give a glimpse of her body. Nothing.
Oh, and she gets the bad guy before Mulder comes to resque. While being fully dressed and awesome.

In Episode 2, she took the bad guy, manhandled him and forced him to do what she wants at gunpoint, wearing big shirt and big overcoat. No high heels, no sexy tight tops, no flirting. Only Scully, no-nonsense and awesome.

The only titillating scene was in the Pilot (Episode 1) where she is actually in her (quite sensible) underwear. (And then Mulder was looking at her naked back. UST on the way!) One scene in three episodes. And I have a feeling I'll have to wait a lot to see Scully undressed again.

Oh. And did I mention that all this time, being dressed sensibly and with her body fully covered, giving nothing to the titillation, she was not just awesome - she was hot like hell?


svollga: (lesbian)

I voted for AfterEllen's Hot 100, along with "companion lists", which, sadly, have only 5 places for nominees each against 10 in the main list. Here is my list of choice:

Alyson Hannigan
Catherine Tate - also in Hottest Women Over 40
Christina Cox
Freema Ageyman - also in Hottest Women of Color
Gina Torres - also in Hottest Women of Color and Hottest Women Over 40
Jennifer Beals - also in Hottest Women of Color and Hottest Women Over 40
Kirsten Vangsness - also in Hottest Out Lesbian/Bi Women (and why the hell don't they have Hottest Plus-Size Women vote?)
Meryl Streep - she should be also in Hottest Women Over 40, but I was out of place already, so I decided that she'll be there anyway, and I better vote for some less popular women
Olivia Williams - also in Hottest Women Over 40
Paget Brewster - she should also be in Hottest Women Over 40! Hell, they don't have enough place for my girls of choice. Though I didn't know she is 41 already until I checked her Wiki page.
Sadly, I somehow forgot to add Lisa Edelstein to the main list (I sometimes miss the obvious). But she's in my list of Hottest Women Over 40.

It seems that I consider women over 40 sexier. Which is sort of true - at least in a sence that they usually look on screen like women over 30 I know in real life, they have a more distinct personality, and they often have the type of body I find very appealing - tall, athletic/curvy and busty. It's one of many types of women I find attractive. Though there are many other types I find hot, but they are, sadly, under-represented on screen and among the celebreties. I also find a lot if young women attractive in real life, but on screen, not so much.

BTW, after I voted, I've found this appeal to vote for butches: The AfterEllen list has so far been extremely feminine, white, under 40, and straight. Last year, AfterEllen launched some supplemental lists, which were: women of color, women over 40, and out women. But still, no gender diversity. I already voted so I can't participate again, and though I find butch women very attractive, I don't know any celebrity butches except for Ellen. (This fact nicely illustrates the problem win gender diversity on screen.)

svollga: (tv)
I'm watching Sharpe (for the fourth time, I think), and can't but notice how in the first episode, Teresa, the love interest of the main character, is dressed and behaves. She's a partisan, a leader of guerilla. She wears comfortable man's clothing - throusers, shirts, a high wide scarf-belt, a lot of layers of clothing. She has long hair tied in a simple ponytail - so is her uncle. Nothing in her clothing shows her female curves. Even when she has to go flirt with some soldiers to get into the town they guard, she wears a skirt and a shawl over her usual dress. The only scene some parts of her are naked is the scene where she makes love to Sharpe, and even then, we see only her shoulders and a hint of her breasts. The scene is still erotic and emotionally loaded, but it's all in the actor's work, their gazes and gestures, not in their bodies.

By the way, another moment of interest was the 'no means no' scene. Teresa takes Sharpe by the hand and takes him to her room. They kiss and sit on the bed. Then she tenses and says that she can't have sex with him, not yet (she is interested, but not ready). Without any arguement, he takes a deep breath, kisses her hand and leaves. Next time, he also waits for her to initiate intimacy.

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svollga

December 2010

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