The title of episode 11 of ABC’s show Stumptown is a pun taken from the titles of a series of misogynist car movies, The Fast and the Furious. Stumptown itself is a show that’s supposedly about a hard living female PI, played by Cobie Smulders, and her friends and family. Before it began airing last fall, it was advertised all summer with ads that made it look like a watered down version of Netflix’s Jessica Jones. It’s really not, since Jessica Jones not only has super strength and deep core wounds, but also important relationships with the women in her life.
The Katie Hill revenge porn saga highlights much that’s wrong with our culture today, especially when juxtaposed against the Trump non-impeachment saga. I’ve watched both unfold with horror, reminded of how truly powerless we average citizens are. Of how powerless women ultimately are.
I don’t have the answers for how to stop revenge porn or Donald Trump and the Republicans. I mean, I do- enforcing the constitution and laws that are already in place would be a good start. So would treating women like the equal, dignified human beings we are. But more energetic, smarter people than me are working very hard on those crises. Sometimes the problems of the patriarchy seem intractable and like they’re only getting worse, no matter how hard we fight.
So today, I’m going to focus on the issue in a more individual way. I was struck by how victimized…
Dark season 2 episode 7, The White Devil, grants the wishes of some of the characters, but some dreams come true as nightmares. Old Claudia’s body is found in 1953 and identified by Child Helge as the White Devil. Hannah takes a trip to 1953 to visit the other White Devil, Ulrich. She meets the Young Adult version of Egon while she’s there.
In 2020, Katharina goes full warrior goddess. She remembers she has a daughter to protect from incest and sketchy boyfriends who have become old men. Plus, she decides she’s ready to become a time traveler.
Martha meets Stranger Jonas and learns the truth about their relationship. Thanks, Mom.
Adult Claudia puts off the French delegation again, then takes the day off to prevent Egon’s death. It’s her turn to learn that the past/time can’t be changed, even if the events she’s focusing on feel to her like they are in the future.
If you are into drinking games, taking a shot for every apology given during this episode could be fun. Or it might be necessary to help you get through the episode.
I’ve gotten some new followers lately, so, Hi and welcome! There’s something I need to say to everyone, before we go any further.
Currently, most of you are here to read Dark, a show we all love. But the character of Hannah is the target of so much misogyny it’s scary, on the show and in the real/online world. This pertains to other shows as well, with other characters who become the target for misogynists. On Altered Carbon season 1, it was Kristin Ortega. On Agents of SHIELD, it’s Daisy. Women who think and act for themselves, without regard to what the men around them want. Just like men do.
In the real world, women like Hannah, Kristin, Daisy and me (and you, if you are a woman) die every day because misogyny isn’t recognized, so, even though some of you would like me to, I won’t shut up about it. While racism is getting the attention it needs, the hatred and oppression of women, the other motivator for mass shootings, everyday killings and abuse, is largely being ignored, even though it was the motivator for the second shooting of the weekend of August 4, 2019, in Dayton, OH. Even though violence against women is on the increase, separate from mass shootings.
Racially motivated violence is described as being ideologically motivated, a label that gives it more weight and prompts calls to action to stop the white supremacists and white nationalists. Meanwhile, “experts” and law enforcement officials acknowledge the misogynist opinions and activities of violent criminals but refuse to acknowledge that misogyny is an ideologythat leads to living a violent, cult-like lifestyle just as religious and racial extremism do.
Yet we know that many of the most recent mass shootings have been perpetrated by misogynist extremists who identify as such, calling themselves by such names as Incels (involuntary celibates) or Red Pillers (anti-feminists). It’s time we started calling out extremist misogyny as the dangerous, cult-like IDEOLOGY that it is.
This Seems Like a Good Time to Talk About Ulrich as a Horned God (Who Is Tied in Knots)
**Spoilers through Season 2 Episode 8**
Okay, let’s give this a whirl. As you might imagine, Horned Gods aren’t my specialty, so I’ve done some research. But also, by the end of season 2, everything metaphorical in Dark is twisted and tangled together, just like the storylines. In season 1, we had nice, neat metaphors presented in ways that couldn’t be missed, with deeper meanings there if you wanted to search for them.
But, before we go any further, a warning. I can’t ignore current events while I’m writing this, and that’s not what I’m about, anyway. This piece was always going to examine the characters, mythology and their connection to the real world. Then the real world didn’t give me a choice. The creators of Dark didn’t choose to have boys be the ones to disappear simply to give women a break from victimization. The boys of the real world are making themselves disappear, and they’re often doing it while armed to the teeth.
They set the show in a town which was losing its main source of employment and then put that town through a slow dystopia which led to a fast apocalypse. This is what Western culture has put itself through since the 1970s, when corporations began moving manufacturing jobs from their traditional bases, and the towns whose original farming and small business economies were destroyed by the factories in the 19th century were now destroyed by the factories leaving.
Because life is political, so is entertainment, and so is our blog. Because we know that the creators of the shows that we love can do better. If no one points out where the issues lie, how will they know where they need to improve?
We live in the real world, where mass media has an effect on people’s attitudes. It’s important to examine closely exactly what we’re being shown and what messages are actually being delivered. It’s the only way that change happens.
Whenever we start analyzing how a show is doing in regard to its male/female ratio and other forms of diversity, and compare how characters from different demographics are being treated, we are always met with the response:
But aren’t the male (and white) characters being treated the same way as the women?
This is where attention to detail becomes important, plus the ability to count, and the ability to distinguish between a named character and a background character. When we’re discussing violent acts, this argument is frequently made, because there will be so many more men running around on screen than women that, of course, in raw numbers, more violent acts are happening to men than women.
Voting matters, but, like vaccinations, it only matters if a lot of us participate. This is your chance to affect public policy at every level of government. The votes you cast for candidates at each level will affect your life directly, from the funding of the schools in your neighborhood to the attitudes of the police officers who patrol your city streets, from the amount of college tuition and student loan debt future students will have to live with to women’s right to bodily autonomy in reproductive and sexual issues. These decisions aren’t just made at one level. They are made and carried out by elected and appointed officials and public servants from the town and city level right up to the presidency and the supreme court.
We only vote once a year, and collectively, we can make a huge difference. So if you haven’t voted yet, please get out there!
If you don’t feel informed enough to vote, the League of Women Voters create fantastic, unbiased, succinct local guides at Vote411.org. Enter your address, and they’ll show you your polling place, the races on your ballot, and side-by-side comparisons of the candidates’ positions. Then you can print out a “ballot” with your choices as a reminder to take with you to the polls.
Update 10/28/18: This seems like a good day to repost this audio, based on Sinclair Lewis’ brilliant, prophetic novel that warns against how easily fascism and white supremacism can overcome a country when people fail to take action against it quickly enough. Violence is on the rise against anyone who doesn’t fit the current concept of the master race, and the policies of the president of the United States encourage the violence and separatism. This is exactly what happened in Nazi Germany in the 1930s. Please make sure you vote in this election cycle.
On October 24, 2016, 2 weeks before Election Day, we both attended a local staged reading of the play It Can’t Happen Here, based on the 1936 novel by Sinclair Lewis. The novel, and the play, describe the rise and rule of a charismatic, dogmatic, conservative politician who is eventually elected president. He promises a return to traditional values, but reneges on his promises soon after he takes office, turning the country into a totalitarian regime within a period of a few months. Anyone who doesn’t offer complete, unquestioning loyalty to the new regime is imprisoned or executed.
This may sound like a drastic scenario, something that “can’t happen here,” but Lewis wrote the novel originally because he was watching this very thing happen in Nazi Germany at the time. The original stage adaptation was created the following year. The original 1983 TV miniseries about an alien invasion,V,was also based on It Can’t Happen Here (and the later reboot series). V’s creator, Kenneth Johnson, was inspired by Lewis’ work, but the network executives at NBC thought the story would be more interesting if the American fascists from the book were turned into aliens for TV.