rhizombie replied to your post: ghoulmann replied to your post: Joss Whedon is not…I’d disagree with this actually. What would “powerful women qua women” look like for you?
I’m not even sure…
Perhaps it would be simpler to say that Joss Whedon writes people as people, and since that happens to break with our need to fit people into tiny boxes, it appears to be something OMG WTAF JUST HAPPENED THIS ISN’T THE SAME OLD GIRLY TROPE AND THE BOYS ARE DIFFERENT TOO, based. It’s not. It’s a neutral gaze. It’s saying that there isn’t a superior gender, there isn’t a gender that is stronger or more perfect, no gender is immune to moments of frailty and weakness.
It’s saying that people are people, they are individuals, they all have the capacity to be good or bad, weak or strong.
Joss Whedon writes women as heroes, but he doesn’t write them as perfect. He writes men as heroes, even when it seems the most improbable thing for them. He writes heroes because we need them, but he doesn’t let us off the hook when it comes to how we think about heroes.
Perhaps that is his greatest legacy. Not whether he is or isn’t a feminist, because that’s not the point. The legacy is that he made people think about it.
“So here’s the part where you make a choice. What if you could have that power, now? In every generation, one Slayer is born, because a bunch of men who died thousands of years ago made up that rule. They were powerful men. This woman is more powerful than all of them combined. So I say we change the rule. I say my power, should be *our* power. Tomorrow, Willow will use the essence of this scythe to change our destiny. From now on, every girl in the world who might be a Slayer, will be a Slayer. Every girl who could have the power, will have the power. Can stand up, will stand up. Slayers, every one of us. Make your choice. Are you ready to be strong? ” - Joss Whedon, Buffy The Vampire Slayer 7x22:”Chosen”
(NB: Bolding and italics are mine, for emphasis.)
If you write people, they’ll be a lot of things. What’s amazing is that when it counts, not all the time, but when it really counts: some of them will be magnificent. Kind of like the way people are in real life.
Ain’t it grand?