August 5, 2009

I Don't Mind Shrews, As Long as They Don't Get Tamed...

So, people have said that Katherine Heigl is in misogynist movies because she plays "shrews." I'm not making this up. Numerous journos have said this. I say, WTF? You are misogynist because you use the word "shrew." "Shrew" is like how they said "bitch" in the olden days (and not in the way where I have reclaimed it. In the insulting way). Shrew is used as an epithet to describe woman who speak their minds, have opinions and don't obey men. Yeah, women with a mind of their own? Is that really THAT bad? Is it misogynist to write a story about one of those? No, not unless she gets tamed in an unproblematic way and therefore gives us a happy ending with her taming.

Shrews, in my books, are kind of feminist heroes. They don't care about the fact that they are bucking societal standards for female attractiveness by being loud and mouthy. Isn't that cool, don't you think? So I don't care if I see a stereotypical Shrew character in movies, as long as she doesn't really change. Heigl's characters sometimes do, and that's not cool, but there are also great shrew performances I embrace. Leslie Mann, for example, played an opinionated wife who constantly asserted herself in Knocked Up, and continued to assert herself in the end (albeit in a slightly less mean manner, but then again, her husband got nicer too), and she still had Paul Rudd's love.

Shrews are cool. I like one who wins the day!

No comments: