Pikachu wrote:I'm actually enjoying the wave of characters which aren't 2D personalities with boobs. - Nech,
You use a sexist false dichotomy of 2D characters with boobs and 3D characters without.
No, you use that dichotomy. In his quote, Nech hasn't said anything about the following three possibilities:
2D personalities without boobs
3D personalities with boobs
3D personalities without boobs.*
He has just said that he enjoys characters who are neither bad characters nor possessing big boobs. I stated that previously. Nech stated that. However, you continue to put words in his mouth. Why?
The fact that feminists on this very site, have outright broken the 4th wall and completely moved the goalposts for artists and writers in order to make their sex negative criticism stick. They will talk about how a sexualized design makes no sense storywise, yet when a storyline is written that justifies it, they just say Oh the character's not real so can't make their own decisions.
Who said that? Where? Why is their criticism sex negative? The unclear way you're representing this point makes it feel like either a stereotype or your misunderstanding of a point someone was making, but like many of your statements, it lacks enough specifics to either verify or challenge.
The diversity and depiction of female action heroes has been criticized for a while by feminists. About a decade ago Christina Lucia Stasia published " 'My Guns Are in The Fendi!': The Postfeminist Female Action Hero," an article in the edited volume Third Wave Feminism: A Critical Exploration
. She observes a phenomenon I've seen many other cultural critics observe: the seemingly "liberated" woman of postfeminist cinema is not actually feminist. Her agency is often proscribed, racial or sexual issues are often distilled down to a neoliberal idea of choosing not to be oppressed, and her many incarnations don't vary all that much. Even so, women heroes often do some things right (as the previous article, Patricia Pender's "'Kicking Ass Is Comfort Food': Buffy as Third Wave Feminist Icon" reports). Anita Sarkeesian has also pointed out the lack of diversity in terms of body type, race, and other elements, particularly in action games, but her points seem comparable to film. So it's a mixed bag, a work in progress, we've come a long way and have a long way to go, etc.
I agree with Pikachu that the lack of diversity within the female Hollywood action hero is a problem, but his argument has two flaws.
First, it's disingenuous to appeal to the many examples of female action heroes when they're such a small percentage of the total action films out there. What about the vast majority of action heroes period? Men. White men. Occasionally black men or men from East Asia.** If we want to talk about parity, it's hard to vary up a narrow slice of the pie, and attacking that narrow slice leaves out the broad, broad parts of Hollywood that don't give second thoughts to women in the lead. If women had closer to half of the pie, then Pikachu's points would take precedence over the need for more women in leading roles. If Pikachu were proposing that we make fewer Jason Bournes and more Tomb Raiders, there'd at least be further movement towards parity and more opportunities to tweak, alter, and smash the existing formulae. As-is, women need more ground in film before economically-conservative Hollywood is going to bite on diversity.
Objectification has nothing to do with what a character wears or their body type. What matters is character.
Second, if sexiness were truly neutral to the depiction of character, then we'd see more action heroes that don't fit conventional standards of beauty. Yet even his argument depends on observing that we're basically selecting two broad forms of beauty: explicit sex appeal, and more implicit forms of attractiveness, both centered on being white. Films in particular are more than written scripts; casting is one example of a big force in Hollywood that tends to enforce a narrow view of kinds of beauty, whether through selecting mostly young women or mostly white women. So yes, by all means let's criticize those systems. Criticizing feminism at large doesn't actually attack the systems that produce inequality and lack of diversity, since they precede feminism's influence on Hollywood and they continue to survive in whatever form they can.
*It's a bit silly to describe sexual appeal as "with boobs" or "without boobs" though, srsly. One of the points I do find bothersome in this thread is the very narrow definition of what sex appeal is.
** Especially if they're paired with a white man in a buddy action movie.