Tag Archive | True Blood

True Blood Season Four: Truly Done

It was with great reluctance I sat down to ingest Season 4’s bounty of True Blood over this summer. But I managed to choke it all down and even get myself moderately excited about the season finale on Sunday.

But this show has truly gone off course.

True Blood PosterAnd this is coming from a woman who spent the last week of unemployment watching the first two seasons again and enjoying them immensely.

It’s just depressing to see how nicely everything was set up – how they took the time to develop interesting characters which they have now abandoned for mere caricatures. Sadly, it’s not an uncommon theme in television anymore for the creative team to use the first few seasons to create characters and then forget about growth or relatability and sacrificed it all for the plot and water cooler moments.

Well, I no longer have a water cooler to gather around. So I guess this means I can say goodbye to True Blood as well. Even before Tara had her brains blown out in the same kitchen where Gran died, I knew I was done. None of the characters have shown any real progression or any logical reasoning since the beginning of Season 3. Jason is a complete fucking mystery. Jessica and Hoyt breaking up made NO SENSE.

The sense of community amongst the characters – their connection – their humanity – it’s gone. There hasn’t been a moment to breathe and I have no more breath to waste.

Really, despite my inclination towards nerdosity – mutants, vampires, werewolves, aliens, zombies – I need to feel like I know where the people are coming from. Motivation. Character development. Archs. A storyline that ties everyone together in a way which doesn’t feel clunky and forced.

It’s not too much to ask for. And there are moments where I still see glimmers of what the show was promised to be. In the graveside conversation between Sam and Hoyt’s Mom. When Sookie and Tara were connecting at the kitchen table. It used to be a people story with vampires. Now it’s a vampire story with people. And that doesn’t really work for me.

Or it could be as I predicted, I’m just OVER vampires and the inundation of the supernatural in every aspect of popular culture.

What is continuing to degrade in True Blood was the same reason I stopped tuning into Heroes. We’ll give it the next 9 months and see if I feel like punishing myself with Season 5. Until then, I’ll always have Season 1 and 2 as a reminder of what quality the show could aspire to.

Advertisements

Season 3 of True Blood: Truly Frustrating

**Season 3 Spoilers Ya’ll**

If someone were to compare Season 3 of True Blood to Season 3 of the ill-fated NBC show Heroes – I wouldn’t be surprised. There were some pretty low points this past summer and very few episodes really hit any kind of high note for me. They felt rushed, disjointed and most played merely for shock and awe.

My buddy Smalls nailed it when she mentioned the lack of any over-arching mystery. Or any mystery in most of the individual episodes. It’s true. For a series based off of mystery source material, where did all the somewhat loose intrigue go? I was looking forward to seeing the Shreveport Werewolf pack brought to the small screen, but those shown mainly consisted of the evil vamp-blood-drinking werewolves and Alcide. None of the Shreveport pack even made an appearance. Did they? If so, it was entirely un-memorable.

Even without the mystery, the separate plot-lines never converged nicely as they did in Seasons One and Two. The whole attraction of focusing on the town is in having the characters interact with one another. There shouldn’t have to be a small thrill when I see Sam and Lafayette exchange pleasantries or when Jessica and Bill actually spend 5 minutes in the same room together.

Sam’s plot-line was absolutely bleak. I don’t really buy the wounded-tortured small town bartender angle. It’s like watching Peter Parker turn hipster evil in Spiderman 3. Sam is a lovable puppy dawg, caring, and a bit awkward. Sure, his character experienced massive growth in Season 2 when he was finally able to rid himself of the maenad Maryann who was haunting him. The scene when he turns into the white bull and punches his arm through her chest was incredibly powerful. Sam has been one of my favorites through the entire Southern Vampire Mysteries book series (I’m always hoping Sookie eventually ends up with him). So what’s up with the creepy flashback of shooting and killing two people? It’s entirely out of character (ugh – the greasy hair and everything!) and the bastard-ass drunken raging at Merlotte’s? WTF? His “I’m-tired-of-folks-walking-on-me-freak-out” was totally forced. Blah. Lame all season. Like his lame family. Poor Sam.

Tara’s plot-line was exceedingly depressing and highly uncomfortable to watch. There is nothing sexy or entertaining about watching this poor girl be continually tortured by everyone around her. She is bouncing between mourning her dead boyfriend, a raping/kidnapping vampire and discovering her life-long crush is a murderer. Ugh. After her shitty upbringing with a crazed alcoholic mom and a season of being emotionally manipulated by an evil goddess…I was really hoping they would take it easy on her for 12 episodes. The only bright spots in her life are interactions with Lafayette. She and Sookie hardly engage in conversation that doesn’t end in bitchy cat-fighting about men or vampires. Yuck. I love Tara. She is real and tenacious and feisty as hell. I’m glad she is getting some kind of reprieve in the form of leaving town. I hope they bring her back in some uplifting capacity in Season Four.

Arlene’s serial-killer baby. It’s just an excuse to bring back the awesome actor who played Rene and have him appear in creepy cameos. Arlene and Terry consistently bring the funny and odd. But their relatively low-key subplot threatens to bring all-sorts of silly intrigue in where it’s just not needed. Maybe it’s cause I’ve read too many comic books/watched too many soap operas but plots with pregnancies are dead fucking ends. Hmph.

Read More…

Bad Blogging and Other Assorted Crap

YES: I realize I’ve been a terrible blogger lately. Can I just blame it all on my new job? Basically I’ve gained the much coveted (in my world anyway) mantle of AmeriCorps Program Coordinator but it comes at the cost of tackling two programs. Which used to be staffed and supported by like 5 people. So here’s me…on the raggedy edge for the next 12 months.

So please, bear with me. I promise that I’ll post content very soon, but it’ll probably be sporadic the next month due to hosting multiple day orientations in the next three weeks. And settling into another office. And trying not to go stark raving mad.

BUT: I can promise you more content regarding the Phoenix tattoo (another appointment on the 11th!) AND the aforementioned post comparing the Lizbeths of the World (going to see Eat, Pray, Love this weekend). Probably some True Blood Season 3 wrap-up in there somewhere. Not to mention gurglings about some of my favorite TV shows right now…

October will feature a Wordstock wrap-up and lots of posts regarding the extravaganza known as Halloween (The Walking Dead TV series!).

November is the Portland Comic Book Show, Harry Potter and Assassin’s Creed Brotherhood.

ALSO: I’m applying for a MLIS program this year, which will hopefully start up in August. For those not in the know, an MLIS is a Master’s in Library and Information Science. I’ll probably update snippets here and there on ye old blog regarding that process.

ALSO: Expect to see a few knitting posts cropping up. I promise only appropriately themed nerd projects (Jayne Hats and HP scarves in the future).

RIGHT NOW: Emerald City Comic Con 2011 tix are on-sale today. I’m reserving mine immediately. I’m also clearing out my calendar. No, seriously. And there’s a kick-ass hotel 6 blocks from the convention center with free parking and wireless. It’s $59 a night, which is pretty comparable to what we ended up paying at a crappy Motel 6 two years ago. The hotel looks kinda skeevy, but oh well. I don’t plan on spending much time there!

Stumptown Comics Fest posted their dates already. April 16 and 17. They’ve also decided to wear big boy pants and move to the Convention Center. Read all about it here.

I feel like such a proud nerd right now – seeing my Pacific NW comic book scene pull its shit together so early. It is keeping me from going balls-out-crazy with work stress.

That – and the Assassin’s Creed II expansion packs (Bonfire of the Vanities, Battle of Forli) we purchased a few days ago.

Please, have patience with my slothenly ways. I’ll come back in full force pretty soon. Just need some space to catch my breath!

Last Minute Bits Before Comic Con 2010

Hey Folks – I’m leaving on a jet plane tomorrow and touching down around noon at the San Diego airport for five days of an intense madness known as Comic Con International.

My apologies for being absent here – I’ve had lots of employment things going on (interviews, job rejections, offers, etc), and then fell ill for a five day stint starting last Thursday.

I’ve emerged on the other end of all this craziness alive and well – but I want to catch you all up to speed on some things that have unfolded the last few days.

1. Comic Book Tattoos!

Yes, I still plan on snapping pics and amassing stories around this. It looks like this project could take a bit longer than I anticipated, and could be on the back-burner as my employment situation settles in the next month. The website itself might be a few months in the making, but it’s my goal. Two great tastes and all.

2. Signings!

For the most part the signing schedules for the big events and peeps I want to see are up, and it’s definitely thrown a wrench into the plans. Boo to that. But the opportunity to have Robert Kirkman and Peter David sign some of my golden crap on Sunday is making me elated and forgetful that I will soon have to choose between panels and signings.

Specifically for True Blood and Captain America (I refuse to tack on “The First Avenger” because that title is both lame and lame), they are nearly conflicting with my ability to get a signature and also see the panel. WHY!?

3. Evening Plans!

Are still for the most part up in the air. I was distracted and did not book the Hammer Improv tickets, so I’ll have to converse with people about that. It’s also on Wednesday night, which might conflict with our Preview Night plans. For some reason I thought it was on Thursday.

Thursday there’s a wicked cool Free Taco Truck for Machete that is not on the Convention site. What else? Oh and a Serenity screening with “special guests” along with a showing of Dr. Horrible’s Sing-A-Long blog which could ALSO have special guests. Mysterious special guests, your mystery is giving me an ulcer over here. Thanks for that. 😉

Friday is the Tweethouse party (a big party on a boat with celebrities and regular folk), and Smalls told me recently that some True Blood folks will be lurking about. Yum.

Saturday is a Kevin Smith-a-thon, so I’m not EVEN worrying about the festivities for that evening.

And Sunday will be our day to roam the exhibit hall, purchase thangs and get scribbles on our funny books from famous dudes (squee!).

WHAT THIS MEANS FOR YOU IN THE VIEWING AUDIENCE

-Expect daily recaps on the blog with pics and filmed footage Wed-Sunday.

-Expect tweets on TinyHeroes frequently, along with photos, quotes and breaking news as it filters into my ears or the ears of folks in our party.

-You can follow Smalls here (as erninlow) and Dan here as (DanielZRob). Smalls gained entry in an exclusive Entertainment Weekly party on Thursday night, so she’ll be especially interesting to follow!! 🙂

Tomorrow I’ll be updating from our hotel room in National City, CA after an exhausting but exhilarating Preview Night. *woot woot*

San Diego Comic Con 2010: The Schedule

The entire schedule for San Diego Comic Con 2010 is now posted on the website, and Smalls and I frantically updated our Google Doc schedule all weekend until it’s in a relative semblance of order.

Diagnosis: Comic Con = Too Much Good.

There is no way humanly possible to do or see all that one would like at this event. Despite this setback, we have cobbled together what we’d like to see, and surprise, surprise, most of it isn’t about comic books at all.

No wait, why isn’t that surprising? Because Comic Con is almost not really about comic books anymore. It’s largely dominated by Film and TV, along with video games and whatever other popular culture elements I cannot fathom at the moment.

And that, sadly, is fine by me. I’ve got enough comic book goodness up here in the Pacific Northwest to sate me. What I want from SDCC, as honestly as I can describe it – is to see some celebrities up close and personal and watch exclusive clips and get some free shit and soak up some sun and record as much of it as I possibly can.

I’ll be updating often on this blog and the Tiny Heroes Twitter account for anyone who is interested.

You can also look at My Schedule (along with alternate panels) here.

Wednesday July 21, Preview Night

– Walking the exhibit floor, getting freebies from booths, etc.

Thursday July 22  – Hall H

– 10am-11am = Megamind

– 11:15-12:45 = Tron

– 1:00-2:00 = Battle Los Angeles/Salt

– 2:15-3:15 = Red

– 3:30-4:30 = Visionaries (Joss Whedon/JJ Abrams)

-4:45-5:45 = Expendables

– 6:00-7:00 = Scott Pilgrim vs. The World

– 7:30-8:30 = Dr. Horrible’s Sing-A-Long Blog

Friday July 23- Ballroom 20

– 11:30-12:30 = Caprica

– 3:00-4:00 = The Joss Whedon Experience

– 4:00-5:00 = Girls Who Kick Ass

– 5:15-6:15 = True Blood

Read More…

The Bechdel Test: 30 Days of Entertainment Recap

Sorry this is a few days late – had to put my Eclipse thoughts down in print (well, as close to print as the internet gets), and my brother arrived home from the Gulf of Mexico on Thursday. Then last night I suffered the indignity of The Last Airbender. Oh you can bet a review of that is forthcoming as well. Anyways, was busy but not busy enough to forget about the recap of the last month’s efforts. So, without further adieu…

WHAT WAS REVIEWED

Comic Books, Regular Books, Television Shows and Movies. I tried to pick a variety of items to test over the month, but you can rest assured that I wasn’t merely selecting things on the basis of them being “worthy.” What was read or watched is really stuff that I would normally consume and didn’t vary from my routine. Except for a few exceptions.

After submitting three episodes of Justified and  having them fail the women and race test, I determined that I could leave off including that show in the future. I still finished up the first season, but have now realized that it doesn’t nearly hold a candle to the awesomeness that was Deadwood. That show was simply too good, and Justified will never be anything like it. Damn, damn, double damn.

There was also a point that I tried to read Ex Machina and realized intuitively it wasn’t going to pass, so was unable to trudge through it. It also started getting super meta by including the author, and that is a gigantic turn-off to me. No one has ever done it well and it completely ruins the story. Sorry writers. We don’t want to SEE YOU in the story. We want the story. You are not welcome there.

I also left off The Road as well. It was a book club requirement and did not pass the women and race test either.

It feels important to disclose what I didn’t even bother putting to the test, because  it still matters to the test. So there you have it – at least three more items that do not pass the test which were not included in the posts for various reasons.

HOW HAS IT IMPACTED PRESENT AND FUTURE ENTERTAINMENT CHOICES?

It’s certainly made me more conscious on a basic level of inclusion. Having to be so meticulous about scouting it out in books, comic books and movies has definitely led to it becoming something of a second nature. It’s kind of a habit now, and I’m not sure if I’ll ever really be able to turn my brain off to examining the nuances. This makes my brain quite happy, as its natural state is to over-think everything.

The Bechdel Test hasn’t necessarily inspired me to give up all entertainment that is dominated by white men, because then I would be giving up some of the franchises and pieces of entertainment that I love. But I’m not going to forget that they only include men and what that says to me as a female reader and someone who feels inclusion is imperative in order to properly reflect humanity and society.

It seems important to mention that even if something passed the test, that didn’t automatically give it a stamp of feminist approval, or mean it was not stereotypically depicting people of color.

Who would have thought that Eclipse and Bree Tanner would have passed the tests? I still firmly believe the Twilight saga is deviously misogynistic and paints a deeply troublesome portrait of romantic love to teen girls that is not achievable in reality. Bella is a disturbing heroine for a younger generation of women.

Another way Twilight passed is through the inclusion of Native Americans; the Quileute characters and use of legends. Outside of the wolf related folklore, there isn’t much mentioned about the current culture and life on the reservation. This is a subject area I would need to do a bit more research on, but the inclusion of Native American characters in the Twilight Saga has clearly been a mixed blessing.

– The real Quileutes in La Push have benefited financially from the exposure and seem pleased to have contemporary depictions of Natives shown in Hollywood (rather than “leather and feather” versions from the 1800s)

– The heritage of actors and actresses depicting the role has been a crucial part of the casting process. Not all of the cast members are full-blooded Native American, and this presents a problem.

– A more in-depth analysis of First Nation representation in the franchise is provided here.

– Actual quotes from Chaske Spencer, the Native American who plays Sam Uley.

This seems like enough material for an entirely different post. Regardless, I guess you could give Stephenie Meyer props for actually including Native Americans in a huge Hollywood blockbuster franchise with all the usual stereotypes stripped away.

Non-Twilight Related Business. Another surprise for me was seeing that Push passed the test. I didn’t have any expectations one way or the other going into it, and so when I started tallying up, I was impressed. It’s been a quiet favorite of mine, an under-rated screen gem which was set up for a sequel it will never receive, much to my dismay. So, even happier to note that it passed both tests, though the Race test only marginally. And perhaps only then because it took place in Hong Kong. But yay for that right? Kudos to films set in foreign countries for no real reason without disrespecting the country and culture.

It also seems strange to me that many of the books, movies, TV shows included women and minority characters, yet left off the need for them to interact with one another. Glee is a great example of a show that purports to be inclusive, but rarely utilizes the characters of color and hardly ever has them converse together. There are still characters of color in the background who haven’t had speaking roles, yet have appeared every episode. That’s hugely disturbing. Sometimes – and I’m sure folks will hate hearing this – I feel like minority or disabled characters are included simply in the series so they can get away with an ethnic joke or a joke about people in wheelchairs that otherwise would be inappropriate if uttered by a white or able-bodied character. For reals.

Read More…

Bechdel Test Post #5

More apologies for the decrease in posting – my work has blocked blog access, and my evenings have been filled with activity. Still doing the job hunt thing, but I can promise an Eclipse movie review and a summary/wrap-up of the June Bechdel Test this week. In the interim, enjoy another enlightening Bechdel Post!

PUSH

Bechdel Test for Women

1. It has two or more women in it (with names): Cassie Holmes, Kira Hudson, Emily Hu, Teresa Stowe, Pop Girl

2. At least two women talk to each-other: Cassie and Teresa. Cassie and Emily. Pop Girl and Cassie.

3. Cassie and Teresa talk about her mother and the Division. Cassie and Emily talk about the bead and convince her to help them. Pop Girl and Cassie talk about the suitcase and the future.

***************************************

Bechdel Test for Men

1. It has two or more men in it (with names): Nick, Henry Carver, Hook Waters, Pinky Stein, Victor Budarin

2. At least two men talk to each-other: Nick and Carver. Nick and Hook Waters.

3. Nick and Carver talk about the future and the girl. Nick and Hook Waters talk about the Division and finding a sniffer.

*************************************************************

Bechdel Test for Race

1. It has two or more people of color in it (with names): Agent Carver, Emily Hu, Hook Waters, Pop Girl, Pop Boys, Pop Father

2. At least two people of color talk to each-other: Pop Girl and Pop Father. Pop Girl and Pop Boys

3. Pop Girl and Pop Father talk about the syringe being in the suitcase. Pop Girl also mentions the suitcase location to the Pop Boys and hopes it elicits the love from her father which she cannot. Editorializing: It’s a great moment.

**********************************************************

This movie PASSES the female test, PASSES the male test and barely PASSES the Bechdel Test for Race.

__________________________________________________________

ECLIPSE – The Book

Bechdel Test for Women

1. It has two or more women in it (with names): Bella, Alice, Rosalie, Esme, Angela, Renee Swan, Jessica Stanley, Jane

2. At least two women talk to each-other: Bella and Rosalie. Bella and Angela. Bella and Alice. Bella and Jessica. Bella and Renee.

3. Bella and Rosalie talk about Rosalie’s past and why she doesn’t want Bella to become a vampire. Bella and Angela make plans to hang out and discuss graduation but they also talk about Edward. Bella and Alice have several conversations throughout the book – many of them center on either Edward, clothes, cars or parties. Bella and Jessica discuss graduation. Bella and Renee talk about Edward.

***************************************

Bechdel Test for Men

1. It has two or more men in it (with names): Edward, Jacob Black, Carlisle, Emmet, Jasper, Charlie

2. At least two men talk to each-other: Edward and Jacob. Edward and Charlie. Edward and Jasper.

3. Edward and Jacob talk primarily of Bella, but they also discuss how to fight the newborns. Edward and Charlie discuss Bella as well. Edward and Jasper talk about fighting the newborns.

*************************************************************

Read More…

Bechdel Test Post #3

TRUE BLOOD: Season 3, Episode 26: Bad Blood

Bechdel Test for Women

1. It has two or more women in it (with names)

2. At least two women talk to each-other: Sookie and Kenya. Sookie and Pam. Sookie and Tara. Sookie and Jessica. Tara and Arlene.

3. There were no conversations between two women that didn’t revolve around Bill or Eric. Tara and Arlene were fighting about race – but that conversation was spurred by the death of Eggs. There was a brief exchange between Tara and Lettie Mae – but it was being coaxed by a male reverend. The only line not uttered through or about a male was when Tara told her mother she was going to take a shower.

***************************************

Bechdel Test for Men

1. It has two or more men in it (with names)

2. At least two men talk to each-other: Jason and Andy Bellefleur. Jason and Hoyt. Eric and the magistrate.

3. Jason and Andy discuss the death of Eggs. Jason and Hoyt talk about their life situation – Hoyt asks to move in. Eric and the magistrate discuss the sale of “V” in Louisiana.

*************************************************************

Bechdel Test for Race

1. It has two or more people of color in it (with names) – Tara, Lafayette, Lettie Mae

2. Tara and Lafayette. Lafayette and Lettie Mae.

3. Tara and Lafayette talk to one another about the death of Eggs. Lafayette and Lettie Mae talk to one another about Tara and their own relationship.

**********************************************************

This True Blood episode DOES NOT PASS the female test, PASSES the male test and PASSES the Bechdel Test for Race.

__________________________________________________________

THE GUILD Comic Book: Issues 1-3

Since these were all read in one grouping…I decided against doing a Bechdel test on each, so they will be measured as a unit.

Bechdel Test for Women

1. It has two or more women in it (with names)

2. At least two women talk to each-other: Cyd and Clara in issue 2. Cyd and Tink in issue 3.

3. Cyd and Clara talk about the  rules of The Game and how to earn points. Cyd and Tink talk about arranging a raid, and later about joining The Guild.

***************************************

Bechdel Test for Men

1. It has two or more men in it (with names)

2. At least two men talk to each-other: No men talk to each-other in issue 1. Zaboo and Bladezz in issue 2. Zaboo and Vork in issue 2. Zaboo and Bladezz in issue 3.

3. Zaboo and Bladezz discuss the game and homework. Zaboo and Vork discuss the game.

*************************************************************

Bechdel Test for Race

1. It has two or more people of color in it (with names): Tink. Zaboo.

2. Two minorities talk to one another: Neither of the two characters interact with one another.

3. N/A

**********************************************************

Two issues PASS the female test (2/3), two issues PASS the male test (2/3) and none of the issues PASS the Bechdel Test for Race (0/3).

Read More…

She Has No Head! and the Bechdel Test for Race

She Has No Head! is a great column I’ve been reading for the last few months written about comic books from the female perspective. Kelly Thompson usually publishes once a week, and maintains a personal blog you can find in my blogroll under Kelly Thompson: 1979 Semifinalist.

Kelly Thompson

We share a similar background in how we originally entered into the comic book world (that damn X-Men cartoon), except she’s ventured into the field more artistically with drawing and writing.

Anywho – she posted an insightful interview with Hope Larson, who writes YA graphic novels specifically catered towards young women. Larson somewhat informally surveyed 200 girls and women to find out how they’d gotten into comic books, what they read, where they get it, etc. so she can better market her material.

She shared the findings with Kelly Thompson in an interview format – mostly talking about some of the things women experience as barriers to the medium – social shunning of comic books, misogyny and sexism on the pages, not enough access, etc.

The comment section kind of exploded after that. There is clearly a lot of frustrated men out there who want to hold onto the outdated and faded concept that “comic books are for boys.” I spent at least two hours reading through the comments and formulating a response. I’ll re-post it here:

The prevailing concept of “comic books are for boys” is like an addiction. The idea needs to hit rock bottom before the people who harbor such notions can truly accept the change this medium needs. Anything else is just lip service and they’ll end up in rehab six months down the road claiming that “girls don’t like comic books.”

It’s hard because so many men responding here want to see change. They get frustrated (as do we) when they have to read about someone feeling excluded from a mode of entertainment they enjoy. They wouldn’t read the articles if they didn’t care. They wouldn’t be upset if they didn’t recognize the truth. Some are upset because to change the system would unbalance something that is clearly in their favor. It’s hard to give up privilege because…it’s so damned privileged. And yes, you are privileged to believe you have an entire medium devoted to your gender (even if it’s not truly the case). Women don’t usually get such a luxury – we have genres (romance, fantasy, YA Fiction). Not entire mediums.

Honestly it makes me feel warm and fuzzy that so many dudes read your posts and care enough to respond. To those who apparently have the buying power (as the dollars I spend mean little to nothing to mainstream comic book writers, creators, editors and artists)…what are you doing to make fundamental changes so the books you love can represent women and minorities equitably?

And if you don’t care…why are you here – reading a blog that is clearly approaching comic books from a feminine perspective? I’ve read a couple different times now a plea for the author to review good books sans female interpretation. Why does she have to neutralize her gender?

Because male is the default gender of our society. And the female perspective is not an applicable lens with which to view the world. It’s not the voice of academia or authority.

Most men fail to realize how much of gender informs what they deem good or worthy of reading. And when they take the time to review, rarely mention gender at all.

It is no accident that women routinely reflect on gender when reviewing things. We experience gender as a very real barrier to many things we would otherwise be fully able to love and enjoy about our lives. And nine times out of ten, when we share that experience with men – they either deny it, or play down the importance of our experience.

I think most of the men in this forum do care. I would say most people desire stories with well represented characters from both genders. We probably love and have close relationships with both men and women. You know, cuz we’re not robots. Well, most of us. It’s very heartening to see men here willing to approach comic books from a perspective that is not their own and have reasonable discussion.

It means a lot to me to have dudes on the side of women when it comes to making a change in the industry. I’ve mentioned this before…but I find myself less and less attracted to superhero books because of the blatant sexist depiction of women. Yes – Rogue’s new costume – half-unzipped and boobs hanging out is the reason I’m not buying the X-Men Legacy title right now. Even if she is the central character and the writing is fantastic. Sorry, there are some things I’m absolutely unwilling to compromise on.

There’s a lot of compelling discussion happening in the comment section of this article and if you are a person who wants to see the medium revitalize and superhero books regain the admiration of women, I think this is a great place to start.

I’m really heartened that many of the guys who read this blog and Thompson’s column seem to recognize that as a woman, it’s important for us to reflect on gender and discover where it is represented in the male-dominated comic book medium. The feminine perspective is one of the primary lenses with which I have to view the world, and it’s important to do so…because (as I mentioned in my comment) – the male perspective is the default view of academia and authority. Well, it’s just the damn default view in general.

As is the white lens. I haven’t brought up much discussion of race on this particular blog in relation to comic books. I’ve often felt inadequate at doing so. But the She Has No Head! article really made me stop and think about privilege.

So – going to add a race component to the Bechdel Test, using some of the suggestions from this Racialicious article.

Using pretty much the same rule:

  • It has to have two people of colour in it.
  • Who talk to each other.
  • About something other than a white person.
  • Hoping to submit my first Bechdel entry tomorrow.

    In the interim, here are some interesting articles about the Bechdel Test and race – happy to report that some of my favorite shows pass (BSG and True Blood):

    The Bechdel Test and Race #1

    The Bechdel Test and Race #2

    True Blood Ultimate Fan Experience Recap

    Had been hearing buzz about the True Blood Ultimate Fan Experience for the last week or so, but it was one of those events that you have to win tickets to. I am a fairly unlucky person and do not often win things in raffles, so even though my interest was piqued, I was kinda like meh – let the lucky kids have all the fun.

    Then on Monday (May 31st) they announced the event had been opened up to anyone who registered on their website – but the passes were first come, first served. I immediately contacted all the True Blood watching ladies I know, and Smalls heeded the call. My parents also signed up. My friend Addie was a bit too late – all the tickets were snatched up by later in the afternoon.

    So – last night we headed off to the Clackamas Town Center Century Theatres and prepared to wait in line for two hours to be seated at the theatre. Well, it was raining. Which sucked, since none of us had dressed prepared to be standing outside. Not sure how that happened, we’re Oregonians dammit. Preparing for all kinds of crap weather is in our veins. Not last night though…

    AND THEN: The final blow which made the night suck more than it had the right to…it didn’t matter if you’d been waiting in line for two hours or not, because the folks who’d won passes (now forever referred to as the VIPs) got to cut in front of us and continue cutting. We were eventually ushered inside after standing in the rain for 90 minutes (fortunately we had a few umbrellas, unfortunately one of them broke in a dueling incident). And then we stood in another line, sectioned off from the VIPs…watching people who had just arrived get their seats before folks who’d been waiting two hours.

    Yikes. It was terribly, badly mis-managed by the mall and the agency HBO contracted in Portland. I know the theatre folks, and they were just doing what they were told.

    Once we were finally assured we would get seats (when we actually got to the auditorium) everything was fine. We got our pics snapped professionally on the red carpet and with a bottle of Tru Blood sporting a Missing photo of Bill Compton. We all received red bracelets which scored us a free small soda. We also purchased popcorn – gotta support the theatre for hosting such awesome events.

    We settled into our seats and watched some minisodes, fan voted favorite clips, and pre-recorded interviews with some of the new cast members for Season 3.

    AT LAST: Alan Ball appeared on-screen and informed us we’d be watching the Season 2 Finale episode. Kinda cool – it has been 9 months since I watched Season 2, so getting a refresher was very welcome. The sound was turned low for the entire episode, and there were a few technical difficulties – but nothing a few well-timed comments from the audience and laughter couldn’t overcome.

    Q&A session with the cast and creator, with Michael Ausellio hosting: The cast all seemed to like one another. It appears that the dude who plays Jason is Australian – which means they have a Brit, Aussie and Swede on the cast. How very international of them. What’s funny – they all manage to pull off a Southern accent fairly well. Stephen Moyer’s accent even seemed to be rubbing off on Anna Paquin. I think all the accents might be overwhelming her, because it was impossible to hear one distinct accent when she spoke. Hah.  

    Season 3 Goodies:  No one really revealed anything new  in the Q&A about this season that we hadn’t already learned from Charlaine Harris or from the books. There will be Fairies, so that’s pretty exciting. Claudine will appear. We did get to see an extended Season 3 Trailer which is now popping up online – but it didn’t reveal much more than the last trailer. And there are Panthers stalking around in the woods of Bon Temps, according to the Jason minisode. So…this might mean that Jason is turned into a Were-Panther. Woot!

    SWAG: Yes, we did receive the swag we were all salivating for. It helps to whet the appetite when you know folks who work at a movie theatre and they post pics of it ahead of time. We received a SWAG Bag, postcards, 20% off coupons for the HBO True Blood online store, mini-posters and a bottle of Tru Blood each. Yum! Haven’t tasted it yet…going to save it up for the Season 3 Premiere party we will no doubt have.

    I’m stoked for the coupon – I’m definitely going to buy a Fangtasia shirt now for Comic Con, and use the bag to sport around all the swag we get. Unless of course, something cooler comes along at the Con.

    This event has definitely gotten me stoked for nerd madness down in San Diego. It was just a small taste of the lines and epic frustration we will no doubt face. I’m sure with our phones, some playing/trivia cards, iPods and potentially a DS for Dan…we will survive the two hour lines unscathed. 🙂 

    Here are some pics of the event:

    This slideshow requires JavaScript.

    Thanks HBO and True Blood for hosting a kick-ass event. This is a franchise that knows how to treat it’s fans!

    LINK LOVE:

    You can watch the entire Q&A Session here