Reylo and Female Empowerment

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Re: Reylo and Female Empowerment

Post by Moonjump05 on Tue 29 Mar - 3:37

AppleCrumble122 wrote:
Moonjump05 wrote:Yes. Thank you.

A female character cannot be a human character- she has to be a role model, otherwise little girls are gonna get confused...

At bolded, this this this!  I love this situation and it is so hard to find.  SanSan comes close (huge powerful warrior Sandor completely undone and beaten by lady like Sansa with a song and a touch- her compassion leaving him at turns angry and in awe and on the road to be the true knight she deserves and he wants to be for her)

That's not the only problem female characters face. They now have to be sexless, non-feminine "bad-asses" who have to fight physically in order to prove that they're "good, strong role models". I said this on JFC and I'll say it again: If there's any hint of femininity such as them liking or wearing feminine things like dresses and make-up, and showing romantic interest in boys they're immediately labelled as weak. It doesn't matter that they're mentally strong or subtly manipulate events using their brain and/or feminine charms, they're not considered worthy enough to be role models for women. Look at Sansa! She's my favourite Game of Thrones character and in my opinion, one of the strongest characters in the whole series, because despite all of the trauma she's suffered at the hands of the Lannisters and losing almost her entire family, she's still surviving and has gone through some of the best character development ever by being mentally strong and relying on her femininity. Yet somehow, many people in the fandom despise her - over absolutely despicable characters such as The Mountain, Ramsay and Joffrey -  because she doesn't fight with a weapon or wear trousers like Arya. Yet somehow Sansa has still remained strong and held on to her sanity, while Arya has gone completely crazy - in my opinion Sansa is both a role model AND a real female character (most female characters in GOT are imo).

It doesn't help that most female characters nowadays are the same - trouser-wearing, kick-a** women who fight. None of them are allowed to be feminine because it's "weak". Look at Ripley from Alien, Katniss from Hunger Games, that chick from Divergent, even Eowyn from Lord of the Rings and Hermione from Harry Potter to some extent, and yes even Rey. Daisy Ridley herself said "Young girls can look at Rey and know that they can wear trousers if they want to." That's completely fine and all, but my one problem is it's been done before!  Even when they do wear feminine stuff, they hate it and think it's stupid e.g. Katniss and Eowyn. That's why I love Princess Leia and the women from the original EU such as Mara Jade - They're flawed human beings who wear natural looking make-up, wear nice dresses and other feminine clothing and use both their brains and a weapon to defeat their enemies and they rely on Luke and Han just as they rely on them.

Also this will never happen, but I would adore a scene where Leia shows Rey one of her old dresses and Rey gushes over it because she's never seen one and never had a chance to dress up and show off her femininity before. Maybe in a book?

I know what you mean with Sansa, I love her and yet she is despised along with Cat. So much vitriol for them, ugh...

I would love for Rey to wear a pretty dress! The girl grew up alone surviving hand to mouth, why wouldn't she like something really nice to wear? Let the girl live a little!
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Re: Reylo and Female Empowerment

Post by vaderito on Tue 29 Mar - 11:16

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Re: Reylo and Female Empowerment

Post by Saracene on Tue 29 Mar - 11:46

Count me in the "let Rey enjoy a beautiful dress" club. I liked that they gave her at least some feminine touches in the movie. The two folds in front of her costume are rather graceful IMO - they make me think of grecian tunics. And there was a shot of flowers in her home on Jakku, which suggested that she appreciates things that pretty up the place.

Rey I think inspires almost a contradictory reaction, in that while most people would agree that she's strong and kickass, her youth and her childlike and vulnerable quality also makes people feel quite protective of her. So they hate someone who threatens or hurts or fights her with passion, and see her as "victim", regardless of the change in power balance. Then, she's just a plucky victim who overcame her abuser.

I remember reading all the gushings about how perfect and amazing Rey is and what a great role model she is, and thinking, god help the writers if that girl ever puts a foot wrong. She can't just be a character in the story, she's a Role Model to girls everywhere. It must be restful to have a character like Kylo who has zero pressure of representing anyone and can just *be*.
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Re: Reylo and Female Empowerment

Post by Mana on Tue 29 Mar - 12:00

Rey is probably the most loved out of all the TFA characters for being an empowered but vulnerable female character. But Kylo is by far the most popular..someone mentioned on JCF that the only discussions surrounding Rey are about her parentage and her possible love interests, which is pretty sad, but is understandable since she's still such a mystery, I mean, what do we know about her except that she's waiting for her parents and that she meets two young men whom she connects with in different ways, both of whom completely change her life.
Kylo on the other hand has essays and metas written about him, people love him, hate him and some people just don't know what to make of him. He's got his own SNL skit, a massively popular Twitter account (Emo Kylo Ren), he's been called a psychopath, a Disney Princess, a cry baby and little boys AND girls dress up like him....
But the real magic happens when Kylo and Rey come together, because they make sense together, they are Beauty and the Beast, Ying and Yang, two sides of the same coin etc... there have never been characters like Kylo or Rey in any Star Wars movie...it works because Rey is the perfect modern heroine...she's no Padme


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Re: Reylo and Female Empowerment

Post by vaderito on Tue 29 Mar - 13:08

Mana wrote:Rey is probably the most loved out of all the TFA characters for being an empowered but vulnerable female character. But Kylo is by far the most popular..someone mentioned on JCF that the only discussions surrounding Rey are about her parentage and her possible love interests, which is pretty sad, but is understandable since she's still such a mystery, I mean, what do we know about her except that she's waiting for her parents and that she meets two young men whom she connects with in different ways.
Kylo on the other hand has essays and metas written about him, people love him, hate him and some people just don't know what to make of him. He's got his own SNL skit, a massively popular Twitter account (Emo Kylo Ren), he's been called a psychopath, a Disney Princess a cry baby and little boys AND girls dress up like him....
But the real magic happens when Kylo and Rey come together, because they make sense together, they are Beauty and the Beast, Ying and Yang, two sides of the same coin etc... there have never been characters like Kylo or Rey in any Star Wars movie...it works because Rey is the perfect modern heroine...she's no Padme

I think that discussion about her love interests would exist even if there wasn't Parentage Mystery [Mod Edit: Profanity]. It's inevitable when there's one female character and 2 or more potential suitors. We are largely conditioned to think that way and film-makers certainly want us to think that way because shipping = $$$$.


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Re: Reylo and Female Empowerment

Post by AppleCrumble122 on Tue 29 Mar - 14:58

vaderito wrote:So yeah, I'm Team Rey Gets Lovely Feminine Dress and Has the Right to Choose Whether She'll Have a Romance and With Whom and Not Be Forced By [Mod Edit] to Make Any Choice That She Doesn't Want.  

Completely agree! And OMG! I didn't think about Leia's title in that sense! Now I'm even more annoyed! Evil or Very Mad But regarding your bolded point - I'm actually really scared by how much the writers will be influenced by SJWs and the pro-role model only media. I'm scared for Rey's character and her potential as a real female character and her story in redeeming Kylo Ren will be affected and turned into a flawless, perfect "role-model" who either ends up alone or with a safe option. Just look at the amount of attention Rey got as a "role-model" when the film came out. Look at all the hate poor Claudia Grey got when she said she liked Reylo and the potential it had. The scariest thing about these SJWs promoting Rey as a sexless, perfect role-model, as well as bash femininity is that most of them are women. Not only that, but the authors of popular novels such as Hunger Games, Divergent, and other books featuring the butt-kicking heroine are women. Interestingly enough - most of the creators of some of my favourite female characters in the last decade or so have been men: Mara Jade by Timothy Zahn, Clarice Starling from Hannibal by Thomas Harris, the women from Buffy (and other Whedonverse shows) by Joss Whedon and the women from A Song of Ice and Fire by George RR Martin. I love all these female characters because they're portrayed as real human beings with strengths and weaknesses, they all fight psychically, use their brains and are mentally strong, and their femininity is not once used as a weakness but rather a big strength. OK, I know that there's a BIG difference between these and YA novels but still the fact is the irony is kinda funny and sad when you see it.

But yeah, back to Rey. I actually had a discussion with one of my female friends about her a few weeks ago. As I've said in JFC, I like Rey for what she represents as the first live-action female protagonist with a lightsaber more than her actual character, and both me and my friend gushed about this because we were so pleased that this happened (the ten year-old in us practically screamed when she got the lightsaber). My friend then went on to say how she liked how "strong" Rey was and how "refreshing" that she wasn't sexualised at all. My response was basically what I've said here, and I mentioned that I wanted a scene with Leia showing Rey a dress and as soon as I said the word "dress", my friend went "What!? Why?!". Just by the confused look on her face and the tone in her voice, I could tell she couldn't understand why I wanted that scene. Thankfully when I explained why, she saw my point and even agreed with it. But her initial reaction confirmed that she thought femininity was a weakness and that Rey would be over-sexualised if she wore a dress, (in reality the only way she could be over-sexualised is if the writers pull a Slave Leia with her) which again reinforces this social pressure on women that femininity somehow equals weakness nowadays. I know I thought it was a weakness until I wisened the heck up.


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Re: Reylo and Female Empowerment

Post by vaderito on Tue 29 Mar - 16:56

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Re: Reylo and Female Empowerment

Post by AppleCrumble122 on Tue 29 Mar - 18:12

@vaderito I wish that were the case, but you'd be surprised at how many [Mod Edit] I know personally.


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Re: Reylo and Female Empowerment

Post by vaderito on Tue 29 Mar - 18:16

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Re: Reylo and Female Empowerment

Post by AppleCrumble122 on Tue 29 Mar - 18:22

@vaderito - I must sound completely negative to you lol. Sorry about that. Embarassed

Yeah, you are right. I guess I'm just ranting after all the rubbish I've silently dealt with from [Mod Edit]. So thanks for listening. Smile
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Re: Reylo and Female Empowerment

Post by vaderito on Tue 29 Mar - 18:31

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Re: Reylo and Female Empowerment

Post by AnneNeville on Wed 30 Mar - 11:16

Hello! This is @AnneNeville, part of your team of moderators. I’m just dropping by to say that @Ohtze and I will be keeping our eyes on this part of the forum.

If you haven’t had a chance, please read the RULES for this section, which are stickied in the main forum and linked above.

I will be checking this forum daily and encourage you to contact me if you have any problems. It’s my desire to keep this forum a fun, friendly, and safe space to explore ideas.
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Re: Reylo and Female Empowerment

Post by Ohtze on Sat 2 Apr - 1:08

@Vaderito, you need to refrain from personal insults/disparaging remarks in the forums. Please go back and edit your comment on page 1, or I will. Thanks.
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Re: Reylo and Female Empowerment

Post by vaderito on Sat 2 Apr - 1:20

Ohtze wrote:@Vaderito, you need to refrain from personal insults/disparaging remarks in the forums. Please go back and edit your comment on page 1, or I will. Thanks.

No problem. I deleted all my posts to be on the safe side. Sorry about that.
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The author of this message was banned from the forum - See the message

Re: Reylo and Female Empowerment

Post by Ohtze on Sat 2 Apr - 1:45

vaderito wrote:
Ohtze wrote:@Vaderito, you need to refrain from personal insults/disparaging remarks in the forums. Please go back and edit your comment on page 1, or I will. Thanks.

No problem. I deleted all my posts to be on the safe side. Sorry about that.

@vaderito deleting all of them wasn't necessary (you had some good insights that were perfectly fine within the context of this conversation, but if you feel the need to delete them all I won't argue it further).

Just so we're clear, for everyone on this thread: discussing the context of female empowerment within TFA (and the unfortunate tropes that have arisen out of women needing to be good role models, the disregard for femininity by mainstream audiences, etc. is 100% okay. Making disparaging remarks towards those you disagree with - whether it's a title that has a negative connotation, or something more general  - is against the forum's rules. Thank you.
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Re: Reylo and Female Empowerment

Post by CienaRee on Sat 2 Apr - 2:16

You're having lots of great discussions here,guys.I just want to add that I defiantly agree that there's a lot of pressure put on Rey to be a role model which may very well affect her character negatively.A big reasons why Kylo is such a popular but controversial character is because the writers weren't afraid to take risks with him and that resulted in so many metas,analyses and debates over his character and intentions.Rey on the other hand just doesn't have that at least not yet.She's a too good to be true character.She doesn't show any anger over being abandoned by her family instead she's portrayed to be optimistic and adorable.You can feel that they toned down her character from the additional materials you later read about her.
I think in their desire to create someone who yeh audience will love quickly they ended up turning Rey into a huge mister you box.Yes she can kicks a** and be independent but we don't know fundamental thing that make her a human being like what are her dreams,her ambitions.Rey in TFA is prime example about why you shouldn't risk character development for the sake of pleasing the audience that wants the perfect role model. I really hope have big plans for her in the next movies or it will be very disappointing for me the waste of Rey's potential.However,I trust Rian Johnson to do her character justice,If anyone can flesh her out it's him but please don't turn her into Luke 2.0.

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Re: Reylo and Female Empowerment

Post by rey09 on Sat 2 Apr - 2:28

What I really love about Rey, than pretty much any other favorite heroine, is she is a tough person but she has, at the very same time, a softness to her. Her radiant smile, her hopefulness. She's very different from my other favorite heroines, who are very much tough all the time, and quite stoic. Danaerys Targaryen comes to mind. I thought her character was bland when her character was weaker, but she's such a badass now. She's very stoic though, which makes sense for her character. There is Furiosa. On a lighter side, Emma Swan. There's probably others. But Rey isn't like that, which I find very refreshing. I feel like I connect with her more because of this duality within her. She's not 100% tough badass but not 100% cutesy dorky type. She's basically in the middle.
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Re: Reylo and Female Empowerment

Post by CienaRee on Sat 2 Apr - 2:47

You make a great point @rey09.I love that duality in her as well but unfortunately people love oversimplifying characters especially females they are either badass or too soft there's no middle ground.
I feel like because some fans want to define her character as all innocent don light they have missed some of her darker characteristics.
That's actually happened with Kylo as well,they don't see or appreciate the duality to him so he's called derogatory names like emo brat,etc.

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Re: Reylo and Female Empowerment

Post by Saracene on Sat 2 Apr - 9:42

Going back to the original post, the idea of Kylo being in awe of Rey's strength, and falling in love with her after getting beaten by her, is extremely attractive to me. Not that I'd want them to be stuck forever in this dynamic where Rey always has an upper hand, but it's really amazing how Kylo's look of awe and total lack of anger towards Rey seems to be something that gets missed by almost everyone - because it's such an unusual portrayal of a male/female dynamic. I watched a TFA review once where the guy confidently predicted that Kylo will be a real revenge monster in the next episode because he got beaten by a giiiiiiirl.
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Re: Reylo and Female Empowerment

Post by AppleCrumble122 on Wed 6 Apr - 18:05

This meta perfectly illustrates basically everything we've been saying: http://littlebird92.tumblr.com/post/142331749739/why-does-ben-solo-need-to-be-redeemed-to-have

). [b]With Rey, for example - and other female protagonists, to a far greater extent - she has this tremendous pressure from audiences to be this strong, capable, independent woman who doesn’t need anyone because all she has is herself and god forbid she makes a mistake or a controversial decision because it will make her a poor role model for little girls. So, basically, little girls will grow up believing that to be “good”, they always have to remain strong, never falter, never make a mistake, be good at everything, and never make a decision that interferes with someone else’ perception of the world.[/b] wrote:

So perfectly said!
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Re: Reylo and Female Empowerment

Post by vaderito on Wed 6 Apr - 18:44

AppleCrumble122 wrote:This meta perfectly illustrates basically everything we've been saying: http://littlebird92.tumblr.com/post/142331749739/why-does-ben-solo-need-to-be-redeemed-to-have

). [b]With Rey, for example - and other female protagonists, to a far greater extent - she has this tremendous pressure from audiences to be this strong, capable, independent woman who doesn’t need anyone because all she has is herself and god forbid she makes a mistake or a controversial decision because it will make her a poor role model for little girls. So, basically, little girls will grow up believing that to be “good”, they always have to remain strong, never falter, never make a mistake, be good at everything, and never make a decision that interferes with someone else’ perception of the world.[/b] wrote:

So perfectly said!
@AppleCrumble122

Agreed! Also, good point that, because of Kylo's equal potential for good and evil, we will have to see capacity for good too, and ending where he will embrace who he is, both good and bad. I just hope that rubs off on her so that she accepts that she doesn't have to be all good, strong and perfect all the time. That's why I like their dynamics. She's more human with him than with other characters.
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Re: Reylo and Female Empowerment

Post by Kessel on Thu 7 Apr - 4:14

Saracene wrote:Going back to the original post, the idea of Kylo being in awe of Rey's strength, and falling in love with her after getting beaten by her, is extremely attractive to me. Not that I'd want them to be stuck forever in this dynamic where Rey always has an upper hand, but it's really amazing how Kylo's look of awe and total lack of anger towards Rey seems to be something that gets missed by almost everyone - because it's such an unusual portrayal of a male/female dynamic. I watched a TFA review once where the guy confidently predicted that Kylo will be a real revenge monster in the next episode because he got beaten by a giiiiiiirl.
@Saracene

That's not the first time I've heard that prediction and it was also from a guy (no offense to any guys). I don't understand it because it's not based on anything we were shown on the screen, it's based on a preconceived notion that Kylo will seek revenge because he was humiliated, by a girl.

It's the same thing with those people who predict Rey is going to go after Kylo and avenge Han's death.  Didn't she have that opportunity already? Isn't that what that massive slash across Kylo's face was about?
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Re: Reylo and Female Empowerment

Post by Saracene on Thu 7 Apr - 10:23

Kessel89 wrote:That's not the first time I've heard that prediction and it was also from a guy (no offense to any guys). I don't understand it because it's not based on anything we were shown on the screen, it's based on a preconceived notion that Kylo will seek revenge because he was humiliated, by a girl.
It's the same thing with those people who predict Rey is going to go after Kylo and avenge Han's death.  Didn't she have that opportunity already? Isn't that what that massive slash across Kylo's face was about?
@Kessel89

I've seen similar sentiments from the women too - the ones who think that Kylo is a personification of everything wrong with the male nerd culture, or something along these lines.

If the story was about Rey and her revenge quest, then I'm pretty sure that it would have been Rey who chased after Kylo after Han's death - not the other way around. Plus, it's a weird revenge story if the person who is being avenged means way more to the killer than the hero.
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Re: Reylo and Female Empowerment

Post by Rimfaxe96 on Thu 7 Apr - 10:55

If we skip the irrational accusations of abuse going on in the interrogation scene - they better release trigger warnings next time to avoid these backlashes of parts of the audience - I'm quite amazed how Reylo is apparently undermining female strength. But a majority of people believing that she just has to be a Skywalker to be strong in the force isn't? Because unless you're a Skywalker you're nothing?

I'm starting to believe that was the purpose of keeping Rey's ancestry secret - so people won't bash Kylo for losing even more than they already do and to keep interest in Rey alive.
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