You go, Regina Phalange!
You go, Regina Phalange!
“ Never believe a man can change a woman
Those men are pretenders
that they created woman
from one of their ribs
Woman does not emerge from a man’s rib’s, not ever,
it’s he who emerges from her womb… ”
This is the second in a series of three videos exploring the Damsel in Distress trope in video games. In this installment we look at the “dark and edgy” side of the trope in more modern games and how the plot device is often used in conjunction with graphic depictions of violence against women. Over the past decade we’ve seen developers try to spice up the old Damsel in Distress cliche by combining it with other tropes involving victimized women including the disposable woman, the mercy killing and the woman in the refrigerator.
Due to the nature of the topic, this video comes with a trigger warning for violence against women.
For more information and a full transcript visit: http://www.feministfrequency.com/2013/05/damsel-in-distress-part-2-tropes-vs-women/
The Damsel in Distress: As a trope the damsel in distress is a plot device in which a female character is placed in a perilous situation from which she cannot escape on her own and must then be rescued by a male character, usually providing an incentive or motivation for the protagonist’s quest. This is most often accomplished via kidnapping but it can also take the form of petrification, a curse or demon possession. Traditionally the woman in distress is a love interest or family member of the hero; princesses, wives, girlfriends and sisters are all commonly used to fill the role.
Damsel in the Refrigerator: A combination of the Women in Refrigerators trope and the Damsel in Distress trope. Typically this happens when a female character is killed near the beginning of a story but her soul is then stolen or trapped and must be rescued or freed by the male hero. Occasionally time travel or some other form of resurrection may be involved in the quest to bring the women in question back from the dead.
Disposable Damsel: A variant of the Damsel in Distress trope in which the hero fails to save the woman in peril either because he arrives too late or because (surprise twist!) it turns out she has been dead the whole time.
Euthanized Damsel: A combination of the Damsel in Distress trope and the Mercy Killing trope. This usually happens when the player character must murder the woman in peril “for her own good”. Typically the damsel has been mutilated or deformed in some way by the villain and the “only option left” to the hero is to put her “out of her misery” himself. Occasionally the damsel’ed character will be written so as beg the player to kill her.
Some of you might be interested in this :)
Watch it while you can, because this video has been flagged as inappropriate and removed automatically by YouTube (yay for bot moderators), and it hasn’t even been up for 24 hours yet. Angry little boys are desperately trying to attack by deleting her videos, since they can’t post their shitty “stay in the kitchen” comments on her YouTube anymore.
Wow, it’s pretty disturbing and gross watching all those clips back to back. I’m really glad Anita Sarkeesian is doing this series - these tropes are important to point out.
A montage of women being brutally assaulted, beaten, raped, tortured and killed sampled from the mainstream top-selling games on our market right now is really hard to defend. This episode should be an eye-opener.
Anita Sarkeesian fucking kills it in this video. She’s thorough and articulate, nothing more I can ask for. Still, I look forward to Part 3 where she covers subversions or break-out molds of the Damsel because it’s hard not to feel a little hopeless by the end of this segment.
It’s an amazing watch, though, and important if you are part of the video game culture both as a consumer or creator.
gah, I still need to watch this!
“Katniss is very skinny… How much do you weigh?
I am so fucking happy that female celebrities are starting to call interviewers out on their bullshit.
“I’m a woman and I’m not offended by this, clearly it isn’t sexist!”
wow I didn’t realise you were the singular spokesperson for 3.5 billion people of different ages, races, religions, backgrounds, sexual orientations, social classes, and cultures, I’m so sorry
don’t call me babe I’ll mess you up (◡‿◡✿)
“ As long as women’s natural body hair is called disgusting and inappropriate while men’s isn’t, I am a feminist.
As long as I can’t watch an episode of a popular sitcom without having to sit through multiple sexist comments or “jokes”, I am a feminist.
As long as women have to face the rational fear of being sexually assaulted every time they walk home past dark while men don’t, I am a feminist.
As long as misogyny exists in any country in this world, I am a feminist.
As long as women are being raped, then stoned to death or forced to marry their rapist, I am a feminist.
As long as companies promote men to manager when there are women who are equally as or better qualified, because they find that men look more authoritative, I am a feminist.
As long as women (her choice of clothes, her friendly nature, her weakness, her choice to drink alcohol) get blamed when men rape them, I am a feminist.
As long women’s opinions on online social networks are dismissed with phrases like “tits or gtfo”, “get back to the kitchen”, “are you pms’ing?”, I am a feminist.
As long as dressing like a women is degrading for men and as long as men are insulted with phrases like “you throw like a woman”, clearly implying that being like a woman is shameful, I am a feminist.
As long as both men are women are expected to work, but taking care of children and the household are still largely considered a woman’s job, I am a feminist.
As long as boys and girls are treated differently, expected to act differently, and surrounded by different toys and colours from the day they are born, I am a feminist.
As long as topless women aren’t allowed in public unless they’re on the cover of a men’s magazine, I am a feminist.
As long as women who have sex frequently are generally told they are “sluts”, “lacking self-respect” and “lacking morals” by both men and women, while men who frequently have sex are “just being men” and it’s “natural for them”, I am a feminist.
As long as there are places where women have to pay more for health insurance than men, I am a feminist.
As long as men experience situations with equal gender representation as female-dominated, and don’t consider a group discussion equal unless there are significantly more men then women participants (as has been proven), I am a feminist.
As long as there are men who think it’s their wife or girlfriend’s duty to have sex with him whenever he wants, I am a feminist.
As long as the word feminism (“the movement aimed at equal rights for women”) has a negative connotation, I am a feminist.
As long as misogynist people exist, I am a feminist. ”
“ You may not agree with a woman, but to criticize her appearance — as opposed to her ideas or actions — isn’t doing anyone any favors, least of all you. Insulting a woman’s looks when they have nothing to do with the issue at hand implies a lack of comprehension on your part, an inability to engage in high-level thinking. You may think she’s ugly, but everyone else thinks you’re an idiot. ”
“ Sociologists use the term “androcentrism” to refer to a new kind of sexism, one that replaces the favoring of men over women with the favoring of masculinity over femininity. According to the rules of androcentrism, men and women alike are rewarded, but only insofar as they are masculine (e.g., they play sports, drink whiskey, and are lawyers or surgeons w00t!). Meanwhile, men are punished for doing femininity and women… well, women are required to do femininity and simultaneously punished for it. ”
I think the ‘women are required to do femininity and simultaneously punished for it’ bit sums up 90% of sexism in one sentence.
Damsel in Distress: Part 1 - Tropes vs Women in Video Games (by feministfrequency)