Exhibits A, B, C, D, E, F, G, H and I as to why the Star Wars fandom is still a toxic fucking cesspit of misogyny and dudebro entitlement. Same as it
was sixteen tears ago, when I first made the mistake of wadding in.
4chan rigged a fanpoll between Padme Amidala and Jar-Jar Binks to have
him win by a landslide and the True Fans(TM) of the Star Wars subreddit
are, of course, having a field day. Do I need to point out why minimizing
the impact and in-story importance of the Prequel Trilogy’s only
notable female character and member of the main trio and reducing her to
just ‘someone with fancy outfits’ is an active gesture of sexism and misogyny? Well, do I?
a mighty fine coincidence that all of these douchebros — who up until
now were keen to screech their undying hatred of Jar-Jar from the
rooftops and invade any PT-related discussion with their venom toward him — suddenly say ‘oh, he was an interesting guy.’ Funny that, wouldn’t you say? Made even funnier by the fact that all of the material that does give
Jar-Jar depth and actually fleshes him out, as compared to what we saw
in the films? All of that material comes squarely from the Clone Wars animated series… which also
greatly developed Padme and gave her a significant role to play.
Fucking hilarious how it doesn’t seem to count at all in her case,
however. I wonder why that is?
Don’t get me started on her
importance in the films and the fact that she was anything but a dull
character. Under-used? Yes, very much so, especially in ROTS, where the
decision to cut her scenes in helping set up the first groundwork of
what would develop into the Rebel Alliance later on was the greatest
editing mistake in the film. Still, this doesn’t change her role in the
other two films, particularly TPM, in which a 14 year-old female planetary sovereign has the strongest case for ‘main character’ status. Perhaps these chucklefucks wanted a carbon-copy of Leia? I have Carrie Fisher’s (often ignored) commentary to quote here:
“The only way they knew to make the character strong was to make her angry. In
Return of the Jedi, she gets to be more feminine, more supportive, more
affectionate. But let’s not forget that these movies are basically
boys’ fantasies. So the other way they made her more female in this one
was to have her take off her clothes.”
love Leia as an icon in geek culture, but that hardly means that she is
above criticism as a character — and one point I was glad for in the
Prequel Trilogy was the fact that her mother was allowed to be her own
person, independent from her daughter’s characterization and free of
this notion that a ‘strong female character’ needs to be written
first and foremost with aggression in mind, in lieu of more nuanced,
complex characterization (which, as Carrie says, we eventually did get
for Leia as well). Padme is allowed great complexity from the word go,
starting from her duality as both planetary monarch and
girl-in-a-strange-land-and-in-disguise and ending with her return to
Naboo, betting on an plan even more uncertain than the one proposed by
Qui-Gon on Tatooine.
But no, apparently not one thing of the above exists for the knuckle-draggers cracking their ‘hilarious’ jokes about maternity leave. Nerdbros and the depth of their disgusting sexism never fucking cease to amaze me.
bonus jab at the Prequel Appreciation Society. Because we all know how
it is with the most viciously vocal members of the Star Wars fandom,
don’t we? Gargle the balls of the precious Original trilogy and never dare enjoy Star Wars in any other way than that prescribed by the purists… or else!