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Badass ladies in film and how our society is getting awesomer

There is a 30something professional couple that walks in front of me in the morning on my way to work. They walk extraordinarily briskly and sometimes hold hands and always kiss goodbye at the corner where I turn. If they ever break up, I will cry.

I watched the first four Resident Evil movies this weekend with my 16-year-old brother (the fourth is the best one). See, they really all bleed into each other, and the very end of the fourth is the setup for the fifth, which is WHY at the beginning of the fifth, I had no idea what was going on. "There's a boat? What? Hm? People are shooting? Ok." But it made me think about -- wait for it -- representations of women in action films and what this meeeans. Although it's really pretty much gonna be Resident Evil. 'Cause I just saw four of them.

The main thing that actually surprised me in the movies is that Milla Jovovich is, IMO, barely sexualized. True, she starts out naked in almost every movie, but that's more "WHY IS SHE NAKED. WHERE IS SHE. WHICH TESTING FACILITY IS THIS." The movies are overwhelmingly dominated by women, few of whom are given love interests, because ZOMBIES. And I'm just going to assume the main demographic for these movies is dudes, so well DONE, Hollywood.

If anything, I think it's proving that guys are getting much more comfortable seeing a totally kickass female being exactly that, with no 'ah, but he was her one weakness' crap to get in the way of cutting off zombie heads.

Or doing this thing

I'm gonna go ahead and say that Trinity in 1999's The Matrix was the beginning of this. Goodness knows the male-heavy superhero movies haven't helped much (even though Black Widow is awesome). A relatively unsexualized female badass? That would've been almost unheard of even 20 years ago (Michelle Pfeiffer's Catwoman, you are my favorite, but licking people does not help your case).

I mean ok. People in business are scared to try new things because they might not make money. But because there are now a number of franchises featuring a badass lady (I'm going to count Kate Beckinsale's Underworld even though I haven't seen any of them), they're more comfortable making movies about them. This has, of course, been helped by kids growing up with Hermione Granger, Katniss Everdeen, and that chick from Graceling who seems pretty cool. It hasn't been helped by Bella Swan, but who cares about Bella Swan? (aside from Edward, who likes to watch her in her sleep like a normal person)

Basically, I'm psyched. And to quote Grapes of Wrath, "the on'y thing you got to look at is that ever' time they's a little step fo'ward, she may slip back a little, but she never slips clear back." Meaning we're done with Spider-Man 3, 'let's have all the guys be superheroes and they can take turns rescuing Mary Jane' bullshit. Huzzah.

In stormy news, my brother and his boyfriend are in NYC, and Alley, whom we all love, is in Long Island, so let's all hope they don't get eaten by Frankenstorm. All of you in the northeast, FILL YOUR BATHTUBS. And if you do not have a bathtub, I dunno, fill buckets or something. Also buy food things. We are CONCERNED about you.


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