I want to stress this again: In many, many parts of the country right now, if you want to go to see a movie in the theater and see a current movie about a woman — any story about any woman that isn’t a documentary or a cartoon — you can’t. You cannot. There are not any. You cannot take yourself to one, take your friend to one, take your daughter to one.
There are not any.
By far your best shot, numbers-wise, at finding one that’s at least even-handedly featuring a man and a woman is Before Midnight (on 891 screens) so I hope you like it. Because it’s pretty much that or a solid, impenetrable wall of movies about dudes.
Dudes in capes, dudes in cars, dudes in space, dudes drinking, dudes smoking, dudes doing magic tricks, dudes being funny, dudes being dramatic, dudes flying through the air, dudes blowing up, dudes getting killed, dudes saving and kissing women and children, and dudes glowering at each other.
Somebody asked me this morning what “the women” are going to do about this. I don’t know. I honestly am at the point where I have no idea what to do about it. Stop going to the movies? Boycott everything?
They put up Bridesmaids, we went. They put up Pitch Perfect, we went. They put up The Devil Wears Prada, which was in two-thousand-meryl-streeping-oh-six, and we went (and by “we,” I do not just mean women; I mean we, the humans), and all of it has led right here, right to this place. Right to the land of zippedy-doo-dah. You can apparently make an endless collection of high-priced action flops and everybody says “win some, lose some” and nobody decides that They Are Poison, but it feels like every “surprise success” about women is an anomaly and every failure is an abject lesson about how we really ought to just leave it all to The Rock.
The whole article is fantastic, as is pretty much everything Linda Holmes writes.
When Archie and Valerie first started dating back in 2010, I wrote about what it meant in the context of a company that in the past had treated interracial dating as something so controversial that obviously black characters were colored in the stories to have lighter skin. In fact, it was standard practice for years to introduce minority characters in twos so that they could pair off without having to date Betty or Veronica — a Nancy for every Chuck and a Frankie Valdez for every Ginger Lopez.
Archie and Valerie change all that, and the way that it’s been pulled off in the past by writer/artist Dan Parent, one of Archie’s strongest creators, has made perfect sense. They build their relationship on a mutual love of music and, in Archie’s case, the fact that he falls in love with beautiful girls regardless of race. As an isolated idea, it meant a lot, but in elevating it to this level, their relationship is being treated as something just as valid as Archie’s relationships with Betty and Veronica. The addition of a daughter, something that hasn’t been explored in the Betty or Veronica marriages and something that has traditionally been even more controversial in American history, goes even further — in a good way.
But the best part is that while you might be able to call it a stunt from a publishing perspective, in the comics, it’s just another simple fact of life for the character that’s meant to represent America’s typical teen. According to Archie CEO Jon Goldwater, the man credited as a driving force behind the company’s current edict to try new things, the fact that Archie and Valerie fall in love and have a kid is no big deal to the characters…