|Snow White (Snow White & the Huntsman)|
I guess this article at The Bellingham Herald would properly be classified as political - so expect some opinions when reading it and this post - but key to the discussion is the changing aspects of fairy tale heroines and princesses* in the public mind.
For once, Hollywood is being touted as an example and force for needed changes in social (and political) attitudes instead of perpetuating dysfunctions. This is exactly what The Arts and Entertainment are supposed to do - challenge us, get us to think, tell our stories and help us shape the world the way we truly want it to be. They've been doing that all the way along, in some manner of course, but the "princess culture" and examples of supposedly strong women who ultimately throw out their values for a pair of rare Mahnolo's (or love's first "bite") has pervaded popular entertainment more than the alternatives. Well, no more.
|Elizabeth I (Elizabeth)|
|Saint Joan (Joan of Arc miniseries)|
How did we get here? Why does it feel like the women's rights movement never happened and women are suddenly second-class citizens? Politicians will have you believe (women) are pampered princesses, damsels in distress who need to be saved from ourselves.
And then I turn on the television and the world looks different. Somehow, it looks better for the ladies. We aren't weak on the screen. We are Hannah Horvath owning our quirks on "Girls," Kate Beckett solving crimes on "Castle," Olivia Pope fixing problems for the president on "Scandal." Even when we are princesses, we can save the day. The "Once Upon a Time" fair maidens aren't soft and whiny and hypersexual. They fight for themselves.
In the real world, women are being stripped of their rights. But Hollywood is pushing forward an image of women as we truly are - independent, strong and brilliant. It reminds me of how "The Cosby Show" dispelled racial stereotypes and what "24" did to pave the way for the possibility of a black president.You can read the rest of the article HERE.
|Merida (Pixar's Brave)|
|Brienne of Tarth (Game of Thrones)|
|Natalia Vodianova (fashion shoot for Bazaar)|
While we don't all need to pick up a sword or wear armor plating to avoid death or imprisonment (can you imagine?!), we do need to know what we stand for and why, and to stick to our standards when the going gets tough. It's not that we don't need help - everyone does, even Queens; Kings too. What it means is that we also do our part to help ourselves even as we're helping others. When people do it's a wonder all of its own. That's my kind of story.
|Alice (Tim Burton's Alice in Wonderland)|
*I'm including heroines in entertainment that have been romanticized, and therefore given fairy tale aspects in the public mind, such as Elizabeth the 1st and Joan of Arc, since this also blends in with issues of what the public considers to be "fairy tale" and what isn't.