The Rule

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    women characters in movies

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    1. valleyviolet 41 months ago | reply

      It's neat to see the original comic. It makes me sad how little fiction in general seems to be able to get past this.

    2. SoraRyu [deleted] 37 months ago | reply

      I'm happy to say most of the movies I watch pass this rule!!!

    3. David Cowie 32 months ago | reply

      BATTLESTAR GALACTICA: RAZOR passes the test with ease, *and* it has exploding starships! What more could one want?
      Seen on (?)

    4. Black Moon 28 months ago | reply

      Actually, there's a cut scene where Ripley and Lambert talk about a man. Ok, he's a robot, but a man one.

    5. honj51 28 months ago | reply

      I always knew something wasn't quite right, I just couldn't put my finger on it. My Big Winge heretofore has been those episodes in 50s movies where the director invariably has the female character doing something so outrageously dumb that every alpha male in the audience mutters: 'Stoopid bloody woman!', thus endorsing their smug belief that all women are f***wits.

    6. tmkeesey 26 months ago | reply

      I've heard the the script for Alien intentionally doesn't identify the gender of any of the characters. That's why they all go by their surnames.

    7. BeckyEliza 23 months ago | reply

      Excellent rule.

    8. Kinders Al Kinley 18 months ago | reply

      The Bechdel Test is an interesting starting point for a discussion, but it's flawed by the second condition: that the women have to be talking to each other. A film that arguably represented total gender equality – one in which there is an equal number of men and women, their strengths and weaknesses equally divided – could fail the Bechdel Test simply because in each scene there's a man and a woman talking to each other, rather than conversations divided up by sex.

      Sadly there are some people who believe (and, perhaps worse, some feminists who give the impression) that feminism is not about redressing the gender balance but about swinging it too far in the opposite direction, and the second condition of the Bechdel Test supports such suspicions.

    9. valleyviolet 18 months ago | reply

      The Bechdel Test is about detecting a lack of women in meaningful parts in a movie. I've never heard anyone claim it's deeper than that. Also, please don't fight off straw feminists. :/

    10. kirsten55407 17 months ago | reply

      Hey Allison, walking home from the Farmers Market today, my 11 year old daughter said how hard it was to find a good book for a kid like her. A good book had at least two girl characters, who had fun and adventures. A little romance is ok, but not too much. The girls had to be strong, and not wait around for a boy to rescue them if they got into trouble. Made me think of this strip. Powderhorn Park still misses you!

    11. clap4U 17 months ago | reply

      Hey, I miss Powderhorn Park! And I miss Amazon Bookstore on 26th and Hennepin, put some time in there - that was awhile ago, before Bechdel's Dykes. Didn't see them until Philly in '84, when I went to grad school to learn about film. And I learned that rule - but didn't know where it came from until this moment. It's like coming home.

    12. kingrandom 16 months ago | reply

      good rule
      Also, those background posters are clever, where those weapons are!

    13. feministmom13 16 months ago | reply

      Imagine trying to find books for a girl (or boy) of color--especially adventure books that aren't social problem narratives. Social problem narratives are great, but not if that's all you get to read that features kids fo color. Why can't brown girls cast spells and ride dragons?

    14. lokiskywalker 16 months ago | reply

      So, do you know whether or not a film passes the test without seeing it?

    15. rainbowsorbet 15 months ago | reply

      I love it so much! Thank you for drawing attention to the problem of women being grossly underrepresented in film.

    16. Ryann Conner Reade 14 months ago | reply

      It would be nice if all the movies that passed that test were automatically good. Unfortunately, every single one I've seen except "Brave" objectively sucked.

      Hmmm... Maybe I should fix that...

      Incidentally, every novel I've ever written passes the Bechdel Test, before I even knew what it was. XD

    17. KGFuntime 14 months ago | reply

      How about a movie like "Sucker Punch"? It passes all of the criteria easily but it's actually more exploitive than some actual porno movies. How do you factor something like that into the test?

    18. David Cowie 14 months ago | reply

      It says very little about an individual film if it passes or fails the Bechdel Test. If a lot of films fail the test, however, then it may well say something about Hollywood.

    19. valleyviolet 14 months ago | reply

      What is says about Sucker Punch is that it contains a lot of female characters and they have significant roles in the plot of the movie. It doesn't say anything about how well they're treated from a feminist point of view or how good the movie is. ;)

    20. thoger.emil 14 months ago | reply

      This test is good if you don't take it for more than it is. It detects whether women are invisible or mere plot devices, rather than actual 3-dimensional characters. Death Proof also passes the test, that is definitely not a feminist movie either. But hey, it's a good starting point.

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