Kate (mskatej) wrote,

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So-called feminists in fandom

What a weekend! Not counting Friday I spent it sober. Which is unusual for me.

My cousin has been in town since last Wednesday which is why I have been mostly MIA (I left the house yesterday and was a tourist for the day), popping into fandom occasionally to get sucked into wank against my will.


I watched “The Notorious Bettie Page” on Saturday, and then read Stephanie Zacharek’s review, and a paragraph stuck out to me as being particularly relevant to recent debates in fandom:

I can't help wondering if Mol understands Bettie Page because she learned a similar lesson herself, the hard way. Strangely enough -- or perhaps not -- it's often so-called feminists who are the first to criticize young woman actors for "exploiting" their sexual attractiveness, even though looking at beautiful people is one of the chief pleasures of moviegoing, and has been since the beginning. When Mol appeared in a filmy dress on the cover of Vanity Fair in 1998, very early in her career, I recall, in the media and in casual conversation (more so, I'm afraid, with women than with men), hearing Mol spoken of as if she were a cheap piece of merchandise. People didn't know who she was; she hadn't yet proven herself. How dare she appear on the cover of a major magazine with semi-exposed nipples? Surely she couldn't be a serious actress. The blatant subtext of those comments was that there couldn't possibly be much more we needed to know about her.

So-called feminists. That term seems to suit a fair number of women, depressingly enough. There’s a trend in Smallville fandom with certain Chloe fans, who seem to think they’re morally superior for liking Chloe because she’s not conventionally attractive in the way that Lois and Lana are. They seem to think that Chloe herself is morally superior because she’s more unconventionally attractive. I wish I was kidding, but over the last week I have seen this sort of nonsense being vomited out all over the place, by women who call themselves feminists.

(These) Chloe fans are “better” feminists because they don’t like the big tits on Lois or the waif-like beauty of Lana; because Lana is just the love interest, and Lois shouldn’t even be in the show in the first place and has fake boobs and is the future girlfriend/wife of the delicious Clark Kent and is stealing Chloe’s thunder etc etc. They think that Chloe (the sexless sidekick) is the best female character on the show (their prerogative), but they back up their position by putting down Lois and Lana. “Chloe is the only good, well written female character on the show. Lois and Lana suck and are badly written.”

This is SUCH BULLSHIT. You are allowed to love Chloe and hate Lois, I am not your boss. But thinking she is a better character than Lois is an opinion. NOT A FACT. And you aren’t a better person than me for preferring her. And if you think preferring her makes you more of a feminist? You’re not a feminist, you’re an idiot.

Also, if you think Chloe deserves to be more successful than Lois because she is the supposed "underdog" I think you have some issues. If you think Lois shouldn't be *allowed* to succeed on the show (regardless of merit) because the sexy girl shouldn't win, your issues are rooted in misogyny. Because Lois is not just a pair of tits, ok? You might not be able to see past those fabulous knockers and acknowledge that she has some brains and talent as well, but to assume that she doesn’t *deserve* to be successful simply because of her body, says a whole lot more about you than it does about her.

Further, the show wouldn't be "betraying" Chloe if Lois turns out to be the better journalist or if Clark falls in love with her for her personality. We've seen plenty of evidence on the show that Lois is *at least* both as smart and kind as Chloe is. We've seen plenty of evidence that she’s going to be a wonderful reporter, and utterly perfect for Clark. If you choose to disregard that and see only a pair of breasts, that's your issue, not the show's.

Finally, one thing that really chaps my butt is when people single out things that support their argument and conveniently ignore everything that doesn’t. (So don’t come in here and tell me that Lois isn’t smart or talented or kind because of a, b and c. Because I can play that game too and it’s really just a waste of everyone’s time. Thx.)

You’re probably all sick of me being ranty and serious about this shit aren’t you. But it’s hiatus! What the fuck else am I going to talk about if not all the morons in fandom?

PS. Go to my journal and see the little personalised icon in the address bar that girlmostlikely made for me. IT'S SO PERFECT. ♥
Tags: fandom, meta, rant, tv: smallville
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