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@Kuroba Okay, what about Clara? How can one empathize with an "impossible girl" (note that she's an adult woman and is still called a "girl" - that's infantilization). And even if we remove the supernatural elements of her existence, what's left? She's bright and quick on her feet, but what else? Does she have any fear? Is she struggling with something? Is she growing and developing? Or is she the same person now than when she started? So far the only different thing about her is that she's changed jobs, from nanny to teacher, why did that happen? Was there growth, change, anything in her character to make her change?
And what about the effects of jumping into the Doctor's timeline? Does she remember? Did it affect her in any way? She clearly remembers what happened: in the movie, Eleven reminds her about the time she met Ten, and that happened nowhere else but his time stream. She died multiple deaths! She remembers all that! All the struggle, the anguish the pain... And there's no change whatsoever in her! It's like those cartoons of old when something important happenes in an episode, but in the next one it's completely forgotten and everyone just goes on with life. But this is with real people we're supposed to sympathize with, and past events are referred to, but rarely any consequence is shown. That's bad character writing, and it's something that affects mostly Moffat's female characters, hence the sexism; like it was mentioned in a comment above, Rose didn't have those problems (or Martha or Donna).
I could go on about Amy as well, but you asked for one example and I'm pretty sure you can make your own questions after reading this.
1 year, 1 month ago on Is Steven Moffat a Feminist Writer?
@BJAMES AdriaCurioso already replied to your question about thte women who work in DW, so I'll leave that out. If you care to read again, carefully this time, I never said I expected the "Powers That Be" to notice ~*me*~. I don't care about that, and I phrased my concerns as a group, because there are definitely more people out there who think like me, and we need to be more vocal.
I realize I might come across as agressive, and I'll admit to that; I have full conviction in my beliefs and are not afraid to speak up, that's viewed as "agressive" sometimes, especially coming from a woman (see the sexism?). I also accept that I don't know you at all, and perhaps I've been talking to you thinking you're male, and you're actually female, so you've definitely experienced sexism. If that's the case, I apologize. However, if that is not the case, I... I simply don't know how else to explain it, and if you want to keep benefiting from the privilege of being ignorant (because that's a privilege you, as a male, have in society, even if you won't acknowledge it), then that's your call.
You've called me reactionary, paranoid and defensive, and you claim I'm promoting opposite(?) prejudice. That's more akin to slander than anything I've said so far. You accuse me of "slinging accusation and insult", I'd like to see where exactly I did that? In the best case, you mistook my post with someone else's, in the worst, you're making slanderous accusations. Also, I'd like you to point out where's the slander, or the crass generalizations, because so far, you're coming across as someone with reading comprehension problems.
@Sam in Cardiff Sure, ignore anything that might make you change your mind. You're free to remain uneducated, if you so choose.
And the plot point you refer to is Amy's inability to have any further children, not the events of Series 6. She acknowledges they 'did something to her' ('oh right, remember that? That was a wild weekend, whew!'), but what puts the tension in her marriage is the ultimate realization that she has been left unable to conceive, not the things they did to her. Get your facts right.
@MeganHustmyer Explain how most of his companions are women, then? If men are used as plot advancement too, perhaps there should be a bigger number of men companions, alone, not together with other women. The thing is, women in television have been used, historically, as props for the advancement of the men's storylines, and Doctor Who is not the exception. You say you watched the show as a child, right? It's easy to have missed the finer shades when you were a kid; you've probably encountered people who say their childhoods were 'ruined' because they watched a childhood favorite as adults and realized all the stuff that went over their heads. It's something like that here, too.
And the thing is, the range of women in reality is not just 'strong' and 'weak', and worse, it isn't divided in 'good' and 'bad' either. If a writer takes that stance, then the resulting character is a stereotype, a caricature, a cardboard cutout that resembles nothing in real life. And I know Doctor Who is sci-fi, but the show is being seen by real people, all of them. Same way you can have sentient furniture and talking animals in a Disney movie, for example, and *identify with them* (wouldn't happen in real life, would it? Would you identify with the struggles of a real lion, out there in the wild?), characters played by humans, to be seen by humans, have to be something that the humans that watch can identify with, or at least feel sympathetic for, and that is the biggest problem with female characters in general, including the ones in Doctor Who: they are not. Someone already said that the Moffat females all kind of merge into each other, and that's really bad; it would never happen if they were written as actual human beings, not walking paragons of "strength" and "sass" and "badassery".
@_thomasilva @EllieBanks@Amy the Consulting CommentatorNobody's silencing anyone. You can say whatever you want. And I never said all men think the same. But being a man, you belong to the group that holds the power, however you chose to wield it. Speaking in favor of equality? Good, you're a decent human being, and that is a useful thing you're doing. Thank you. But you can never know first hand what institutionalized sexism feels like, as a man. You can be discriminated against, and prejudiced upon, and those are bad things that should not happen to anyone, including you, but experience sexism? Just no. That's something that comes from a group of power (as in 'men', how many times do I have to stress this), towards a group historically powerless ('women').
@BJAMES @EllieBanks@Sabrina PYou're talking about it, that's got some value, and if just one person can leave with doubts that will later result in their education, then mission accomplished. As for attacking the show instead of doing something of value, care to enlighten me? What can I, a lowly fan, do to change the show, other than express my views in a public forum like this? It's not like I'm gonna be called to write for the show, is it? But if me, and others, start demanding better-written female characters, and eventually our voices reach the Powers That Be, then someone who can actually do something will start thinking about it. That's how change operates. So I'll just keep talking and talking, whatever names you want to call me. Surely someone, perhaps not you, will get something out of my comments, if only an interest in knowing more about the topic of feminism.
@BJAMES @Sabrina P"Are you insisting that the Doctor's euphoric kissing of Jenny after
she'd rescued him was some sort of violation of her as a woman, or as a
It was inappropriate and nonconsensual, so it was a violation of her personal space, and a normalization of rape culture. I fully agree with Sabrina P about that.
"If you're seeing sexism and homophobia here, the issue is entirely in your head, it's something you're bringing with you"
Well, then it must be a collective delusion 'cause I'm seeing it too. If you're not seeing it, BJAMES, then try educating yourself. That is, if you do care about what you're shown on TV and the effect it definitely has in your appreciation and respect for other people's choices.
@Amy the Consulting Commentator"- So sexism against men doesn't exist?"
No, it doesn't, because men hold most of the power in society, so it is only them who can be sexist. Men can suffer discrimination and prejudice, which are bad, but that does not carry the same collective weight as sexism, which is institutionalized. And bear in mind that most of the discrimination against men (for example, against gay men) comes from OTHER MEN, not women.
@BJAMES @Sabrina P"Equality in anything will have to be accomplished by male,
female, including LGBT individuals as a group of human beings working
Yes, exactly. And there ALREADY EXISTS an overabundance of male voices and presences trying to "educate" everyone else, so I'd kindly request for them to step down and allow space for the other minorities you allude to to talk about these issues, most importantly the ones that concern them, for equality to exist as per your description.
@notYourGoldfish He doesn't have to write strong female characters, but believable ones, and he fails at it. If he doesn't write women like they're human beings, but rather this cartoonish females who go through life with no real purpose or development, then those are bad characters, no matter how strong they seem.
As for Chuck Lorre, that guy is so far out on the sexist writing that it doesn't even bear mentioning, but his shows are aimed to another kind of audience that... doesn't seem to notice? And it's not a matter of agreeing with your character's views on life, but how the issue is presented on the show. The same issue can be presented different ways, take Community vs The Big Bang Theory, for example. Both contain a lot of nerdy references and situations, but the first makes it cool and relatable, even in scenarios where it seems impossible (8-bit games), and the second points and laughs at its characters, making them look awkward and ridiculous for being who they are.
@SteveWillis He doesn't have to have the women doing all the chores for the men for it to be sexist; if they're there merely to advance the man's plot (the Doctor's), they're props, and therefore, not good characters. They're cartoons, impossible to empathize with, because they behave in a way that's not realistic at all. And yes, most of them kinda blur into each other, which is really sad.
@Riversmith Moffat writes caricatures of women. It doesn't matter if they can lift a train with their sass, if they're impossible to empathize with, they're bad characters.
I'm sorry, but I don't buy any of this. And you've got it wrong: feminism is not about writing STRONG female characters, it's about writing REAL, RELATABLE female characters you can empathize with, and that's where Moffat falls flat on his attempts. A female character can be soft and peaceful and still be a feminist icon, if written with an interest of making it a real human being and not just a cardboard cutout used for plot-advancement (of the men). Amy Pond waking up in the middle of giving birth? And later losing her child? And she is not the least bit traumatized? Come on, that's a freaking cartoon, and NOT BELIEVABLE AT ALL, no matter how many times she ventures into alien spaceships to push buttons. Victorian character Jenny stripping to a skin-tight black suit to fight? We know precious little of her backstory, but it just doesn't make sense that somebody living in Victorian England would turn into Trinity from the Matrix just for the sake of a cool fighting scene. And does River Song ever lose something important to her? Even when she sacrificed all her regenerations to save the Doctor (which was stupid, IMHO), she's still the same character with the naughty schtick. She cries, of course, but does she ever change? Isn't Mels just the same character, no development, as Professor River Song, summoned from the Library as a ghost-thing? Look, even the non-flirty, science-y Osgood from the movie is a caricature of a... I wanted to say scientist, but she's more the jock's vision of a nerd, for fun purposes: glasses and an inhaler? And also awkwardness... it's like the make-fun-of-this-person trifecta, out of a Chuck Lorre sitcom, and I'm really surprised that more people didn't find her offensive, since she's supposed to represent the nerdy fans...
So I'm with Sabrina P. Find a woman to write an article about feminism. Also, someone who really knows what it's about. Enough voices of men telling women what they should and should not do/talk about, isn't it time for a fresh breath of air from someone who's directly affected by this issue?
@supermoff Simple, because equality does not exist yet. Women's voices are more important in a debate about feminism because there are so few of them; for centuries it's been mostly men talking among themselves about what women should and should not do (complain about in this case). Easy enough to understand?