Daenerys Targaryen and Natasha Romanoff: Two Powerful Women Meet Demoralizing Ends

In the Age Old Choice for Female Characters Between Powerful or Good, Wh*re or Madonna, Modern Writers Frequently Land on a Third Choice: Insane or Suicidal, Then Dead

When Joss Whedon’s dream came true and Natalia Alianovna Romanoff willingly flung herself to her death, I felt nothing. I knew from the moment she and Clint went off for the Soul Stone that she would die, but, stupidly, I didn’t quite get to the realization that she would be the one to kill herself – one of the few decisions she’s made for herself in her time in the MCU.

There aren’t a lot of options for women and girls to look up to as role models in media – not female ones, anyway. Growing up, I was always looking for female role models in media, and I frequently ended up in love with the ones who had agency, above all else. The “powerful or good” dichotomy that I wrote about in a post in response to the Frozen musical details the struggle I’ve always found in female characters. You can be powerful or good, have agency or compassion, intelligence or charm, be sexy or moral – wh*re or madonna.

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Netflix’s Bodyguard Season 1: Review

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Bodyguard is a 6 episode BBC crime thriller that’s been released globally as a Netflix Original. Created by Jed Mercurio (Line of Duty) and starring Richard Madden (Game of Thrones) and Keeley Hawes (The Durrells in Corfu), Bodyguard has no connection to the 1992 Whitney Houston/Kevin Costner movie The Bodyguard. Last fall, Bodyguard became a ratings sensation in the UK, where it was shown as a weekly series and broke viewing records.

There is good reason for that. The show is gripping and intense from the first minute, when we meet main character David Budd, an Afghanistan veteran with untreated PTSD who is currently working for London’s Metropolitan Police Service as a Principal Protection Officer (PPO), or as we layman think of it, a bodyguard, for important members of the British government. He’s traveling on a train with his two children and discovers a suicide bomber, Nadia (Anjli Mohindra) hiding in the bathroom at the end of their car. In the powerful opening sequence, David takes it upon himself to talk Nadia down so that everyone comes out of the situation alive, disobeying orders from the bomb squad as he works with Nadia to ensure that she’s captured instead of killed.

After his heroic success on the train, David gets noticed by his superiors, and promoted to protecting the controversial, right-wing Home Secretary*, Julia Montague. Montague is pushing for legislation that would allow increased surveillance by law enforcement agencies, an idea that’s unpopular with many in the public and in the government. She’s also ambitious and widely believed to be considering an end run around the usual channels in order to become Prime Minister.

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The Women of The Passage: Character Analysis

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One of the main themes of The Passage, both the TV series and the book trilogy, could be summed up in the title of S1 Ep8 of the series: You Are Not That Girl Anymore. The major female characters of The Passage have all grown this season and had an impact on the main arc of the story.

The future relies on Amy Bellafonte and how she weathers the virus and her relationship with the other virals. It’s Dr Nichole Sykes’ commitment to Jonas Lear’s vision that made Project NOAH what it is, and she is still an important part of the evolving nature of the virus and virals. Dr Lila Wolgast has provided emotional, medical and logistical support for Brad, Amy, Richards, Sykes and Lacey at key moments. Shauna Babcock is Fanning’s second in command. Lacey Antoine rescued Brad and Amy and gave them a hideout from Richards’ pursuit. Elizabeth Lear was the catalyst for the entire endeavor. She was both Jonas’ excuse for pursuing the Bolivian rumors until the end of the world and the voice of reason in his head telling him he was going too far.


Shauna Babcock

Though there are a few female inmates who have become virals, Shauna Babcock is the only one we’ve seen communicate with humans and whose backstory we’ve been given in detail. Shauna has lived a complicated life, and has created a complicated web of relationships within Project NOAH. Manipulation is her specialty, making it difficult to tell when she’s being sincere and when she’s using someone.

In the story she told Clark, she’s a victim with a tragic backstory who finally snapped. Shauna was regularly raped by her stepfather from the ages of 8-16, until she was old enough to stand up to him and make him stop.

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Movie Review: The Breaker Upperers

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The Breaker Upperers * 2018 * Not Rated- Probably PG-13 for Language, Nudity and Adult Situations * 82 Minutes 

😸😸😸😸🌑  Rated 4/5 Happy Lap Cats

Spoiler-Free Review:

As the poster above says, 6 different times, The Breaker Upperers is hilarious. It is, first and foremost, a wacky comedy that’s not afraid to go for the laugh in whatever situation it finds itself in, whether that’s with a newly pregnant woman becoming nauseated while sharing the news with a friend, or engaging in drunken karaoke on a party bus.

Actually, those situations are likely to end the same way, so maybe that wasn’t the example of opposites I was looking for.

The great thing about this film is that, while it’s a wacky, screwball, sort of romantic, sort of musical, sort of dark, comedy, it’s also real. It’s the kind of female-oriented film I’ve been looking for on Netflix, as I’ve watched their romantic comedies pile up over the last year, almost all so laden with stereotypes and misogyny that I can barely manage to finish one viewing. The two female characters at the center of this film are just people, living their lives, not heroes, not villains, not stereotypes, and not trying to be any of those things. So are the rest of the characters.

The Breaker Upperers was written, directed by and stars Madeleine Sami and Jackie van Beek, two multi-talented women from New Zealand, who have been friends for many years in real life. In the film, they play Mel and Jen, who have also been friends for many years. Mel and Jen own and operate their own business, the titular Breaker Upperers, who clients hire to do the dirty work of ending a relationship when they can’t or don’t want to do it themselves.

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Travelers Season 3: Did Carly Provoke the Director into Intervening with Jeff?

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Spoilers Through Season 3 Episode 10, Protocol Omega.

In season 3 of Travelers, Jeff and Carly’s series-long battle finally ends with Jeff being taken over as a Traveler. Later, the Traveler who’s using Jeff as a host, 5416, suggests that the Director only took Jeff because Carly stood her ground during an argument and turned it into a kill or be killed situation, forcing the Director’s hand. In other words, he accuses her of causing Jeff’s death by making the Director choose between allowing both her and Jeff to die, or using Jeff as a host.

During the same conversation, 5416 makes it clear that he knows little about Jeff as a person or his history with Carly. Over the next few episodes, it becomes obvious that his training was lacking in other ways, because the future is getting worse, instead of better. His supposed “calling out” of Carly for causing the Director to take Jeff as a host, when it otherwise wouldn’t have, is based on ignorance, and should be dismissed.

When evidence from all three seasons is examined, it’s clear that the Director planned to use Jeff as a host, and planned to use him for this mission. Indeed, 5416 acknowledges that he’s been training for this mission, and has had training to function as “Jeff”, just not enough.

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Why Does Metawitches Keep Writing About Diversity and Violence Against Women When I Just Want to Read a Recap?

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Photo by Tookapic on Pexels.com

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.

Let’s break this situation down.

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Travelers Season 3 Episode 4: Perrow Recap

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Find my other Travelers posts HERE.

Episode 4, Perrow, picks up the dropped thread of 001, who went into hiding at the end of season 2, and hasn’t been seen since. The Faction kidnaps Perrow, via car accident, because they want something from her. She’s injured so badly that Perrow’s body is no longer viable, but the Faction can offer 001 a new host in trade, and an army for her to lead.

001, the first Traveler, had been using Vincent Ingram as his host body since he accidentally transferred into Vincent, instead of another man, on 9/11/2001 in Tower 1 of the World Trade Center, minutes before the plane hit the building (S2 Ep1, Ave Machina). Over the course of season 2, he built a consciousness transfer device in the 21st century, with the help of Traveler 004/Simon, a highly trained Traveler who’d been institutionalized after his host developed schizophrenia.

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Midnight, Texas Season 2 Episode 7: Resting Witch Face Recap

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By the time we’re done watching episode 7, “Resting Witch Face”, the sleepy little town of Midnight, Texas has been turned upside down. Its darkest secrets have been exposed, friends and enemies have switched places, and another character has been lost. With only two episodes left following this one, the show is preparing its stage for a huge season finale.

As the episode begins, Joe is still out looking for Chuy, who is out of control and in his demon form. Walker has followed them. Fiji is hiding just how much her new affiliation with dark magic has affected her. Patience and Kai are supposedly dealing with the aftermath of the hotel being used as the epicenter of the town’s troubles in the previous episode.

And Manfred is still standing on his front porch, in tears, after watching Creek’s ghost disappear in flames. After a moment, he snaps into action and goes looking for Kai, who’s more than ready for a fight. They meet out in the street, shouting threats at each other. Kai tries to take Manfred’s powers from him, against his will. Only Patience is surprised. Lem stops Kai, then Patience takes him back to the hotel. Manfred tells everyone else that he saw Creek’s ghost.

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Midnight, Texas: Who Killed Creek? Could It Be Fiji?

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In the shocking ending of  Midnight, Texas, season 2, episode 6, No More Mr Nice Kai, Manfred discovered that his once and possibly future girlfriend, Creek Lovell, was dead. Creek left town at the end of season 2, episode 1, Head Games, in order to go to college and find the peace of mind and personal safety that eluded her in Midnight. She came back to Midnight in episode 6 because she thought Manfred needed her and she missed him. Instead of being allowed to return to her new life, she was murdered.

The last time we saw Creek alive, Kai discovered her in the hotel, searching for Manfred. The next time we saw her, she was a ghost. She was able to speak to Manfred, but she quickly burned up and was forced to move on to the next plane of existence. The fire started in her throat, probably to stop her from speaking.

The normal way that ghosts move on to the next plane is to disappear. They become gray smoke, which then vanishes. This is how Lyric moved on. We saw it frequently in season 1. The only other ghosts who’ve disappeared in fire, the way that Creek did, were Bruce and Carolyn, the married couple who’d owned the hotel in the 50’s, who we met in episode 2. Fiji used an ancient spell to send them on their way, which required the bones of the dead, sage, and a goat’s heart. The flames burned the ghosts in the same order that they burned their bones. In the case of Bruce and Carolyn, that was bottom to top. Carolyn was able to give Manfred a message, “There are secrets behind the woods,” because her head and neck were the last parts to go.

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Midnight, Texas Season 2 Episode 6: No More Mr. Nice Kai Recap

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Midnight, Texas is a weird show. It’s fun. It’s sexy. With all of those shirtless men and relationship plotlines, it’s clearly aimed at women. It’s based on a series of books by Charlaine Harris, who is a famous and successful woman.

Unlike True Blood and the Midnight, Texas books, this TV series kills off its female characters right and left. In episode 6, Creek returns to Midnight, only to be fridged by the end of the episode. Time after time this season, we’ve watched the women be killed or duped, while the men leave town alive, or overcome whoever cons them. After the deaths of Creek, Lyric, Sequoia, and Mary’s mother, Sheila (just to name a few off the top of my head), will the Rev and Mary the baby weretiger’s father be returning Midnight to be murdered in episode 7, and will Olivia’s father die the week after that, to help balance the scales?

This show’s history suggests that a woman from Midnight will sacrifice and be punished in some major way before the end of the season. It will probably be Fiji, with Patience as the dark horse coming up strong from the outside. Trace Lysette’s character Celeste will likely be brought back to die. Fiji has already given up her heart, and the aunt who raised her, to the dark side, but the town will rescue Bobo’s true love. She’ll be contrite for overreaching and daring to think she could handle dark magic as a mere woman (of color).

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