Writing Day & Virtuality 7.22.08

Okay so since yesterday I’ve been feeling filled with creative energy so I’m declaring today a Writing Day.
But before I go off to be a creative I have to point out that I’m super pissed at Ron Moore’s new show Virtuality. This is one of the new sf/f shows coming up that I wanted to try out until I read spoilers on io9.com.

WARNING SPOILERS AHEAD:

This is particular pisses me off:

2) The crew are all spending time in virtual reality “modules,” including everything from a restful seaside scene to a Civil War battle where Confederate troops attack Union soldiers, only to fall into an ambush. In all their “modules,” a mysterious figure known as the Green-Eyed Man shows up and kills the humans in gruesome ways. (Unlike in The Matrix and other scifi classics, being killed in VR doesn’t harm you in real life, but it’s jarring.) Is the Green-Eyed Man a hack by one of the crew members? A computer glitch? Or something else? Everybody suspects Billie, the computer geek — until she’s raped by the Green Eyed Man, in a brutal and horrible scene. (io9.com)

Seriously, Rom Moore? Seriously?!? Didn’t we already do the gratuitous rape scene in BSG with Athena? Yes it was cut from the broadcast version but it’s there on the DVD set. What is up with you and rape? It’s super-skeezy and the same old misogynistic shit we see all the time. Making her the computer geek just serves to reinforce the message, it doesn’t matter how powerful you may be (and when one of the storylines of the show is about virtual reality the computer geek is pretty damn powerful) you’re still vulnerable to this. It’s an old and tired sexist trope to bring the strong woman down with rape and it makes me nauseous. Yeah I was thinking of watching this show when it premiered, now I don’t know if I can stomach it.

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4 responses to “Writing Day & Virtuality 7.22.08

  1. Well, what is there for a woman to be, but a Sacred Vessel? A uterus is Chekov’s Gun, there to be fired^h^h^h^h filled by the end of the play.

    Blech. And yes, Moore was so very *careful* to make sure that we knew that the guys *didn’t* get raped – or even menaced with so much as a plunger handle – when they were being similarly held captive and abused on the Pegasus…Very much a gendered trope, it is – women are the Sex Class, not men.

  2. bellatrys-
    And yes, Moore was so very *careful* to make sure that we knew that the guys *didn’t* get raped – or even menaced with so much as a plunger handle – when they were being similarly held captive and abused on the Pegasus

    YES! YES! and YES! This is so one of the things that put me in a full on rage about BSG. Moore tries to make it seem gender blind by having everyone referred to as “sir” and very little gender-based pejoratives thrown on his female characters but the actions don’t play that out. It’s like BSG talks the talk but doesn’t walk the walk.

    The Chief or Helo should have been raped or at least the threat of rape held over their heads because if it’s simply being used as an interrogation technique (which pisses me off to no end!) then it would be just as effective on men but the possibility is not even explored. It’s just a retread of the same old crap but with this pseudo-feminist veneer so Moore has some sort of defense when attacked for it.

    OH RON MOORE NO!

  3. That’s *exactly* why I have yet to watch Season Three of BSG, because of the business with Helo and Chief on the Pegasus compared to the treatment of the female Cylons.

    Just so AUGH! Because there was so much I really liked about BSG.

  4. Just so AUGH! Because there was so much I really liked about BSG

    Same here! altho’ in my case it’s what’s made not being able to see S3 of BSG not intolerable – it started out so good with female Starbuck and Boomer etc, and showing women with sexual agency who weren’t just Mothers or Whores, and women who were intensely professional who weren’t just Prissy Librarians or Crones, women existing as people and not simply as appendages of male charas – and then it lost all of it with increasing rapidity, because they just don’t know what to DO with women, because OMG!Vagina just takes over their authorial brains and so they can’t write any intrinsic character arcs for us.

    I coined the phrase Critical Imagination Failure the other day to describe the paucity of vision that results in an utterly obvious and pointless retread of a cliche so old it’s got barnacles on, and that’s what we see going on with Moore – and not him alone, with that damned Chekov’s Uterus thing, it happened in Farscape too, frex.

    BetaCandy at Hathor Legacy blew the whistle on scriptwriting school – they actually teach them in class that “audiences” don’t want to see anything but Straight White Guy as Hero-Dude holding center stage and nobody can be allowed to detract from SWG’s limelight. Echidne, commenting on BC’s post, has coined the term “Stud Flick” as the politer counterpart to “Chick Flick” and points out that it is the human default, in the movies. (Straight outta Aristotle, via Aquinas – plus ca change!)

    This also has to do with, I suspect, the turning of Lee Adama into this Sexual Black Hole sucking in every woman around him, even when there had been no hint of UST before hand and no logical *reason* for it, either – the only relationship between him and Dualla should have been that of rivalry as she felt protective towards *her captain* and angry at him for his “cowboy” antics… But hey! Lee’s the Hero! What are we going to do with all these women around him, except have them fall for him? (Unless they’re with some other guy, and maybe even then…)

    Similar Critical Imagination Failures always seem to happen with GLBT charas and CoCs, too. Like I once said, ‘you can’t write a universe bigger than your head’ and the heads of most Hollywood creative types – as one of the SG-1 scriptwriters once admitted tho’ I can’t find the linke to it now – are mostly very small and boring inside…

    The Chief or Helo should have been raped or at least the threat of rape held over their heads because if it’s simply being used as an interrogation technique (which pisses me off to no end!) then it would be just as effective on men but the possibility is not even explored.

    And it’s not like Moore – or anyone in this whole #$%*&@ country – can pretend that they don’t realize that OMG men can be raped? That’s really an option? – given the ubiquitousness of prison rape jokes in this country, on HBO or off it – and given Abu Ghraib. It’s just that it would be too great a blasphemy, just like having some hero get castrated (even accidentally, like that guy in the Hemingway novel) would be TOO outrageous ever to show, or even have happen to a male chara.

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