Wednesday, December 28, 2016

To Carrie on without her.

Imagine a young actress who has already become an icon in film. She is going to act in a movie that is guaranteed to become the biggest motion picture success of all time as the character that made her famous. Now imagine this description of a scene she will perform:

"You are captured and shackled by a vile and monstrous gangster. And you will take your chains and strangle him to death with the very chains that hold you and escape."

Oh my God, this is a feminist dream! The symbolism! This is will be so inspiring to women and young girls everywhere!

"... and you will do this while wearing a metal bikini. And make it look sexy - you should probably lose a few pounds for this."

Yeah. Liberating.

So what did she do? She nailed it, looking sensual and mighty at the same time. She could have effectively wrapped that chain around George Lucas' own neck. (Isn't it curious that Lucas, like Jabba the Hut, really has no visible neck?)

She followed up that performance by making a career out of mocking the fact that she had to wear that outfit. That is a woman who has strength deeper than any of us can imagine. I think the expression we're thinking of is that she "has balls" (although seeing her in that outfit makes it obvious that she does not!)

When I was 6 years old I was sleeping with Carrie Fisher. She was on my Star Wars bed sheets! She was already part of my life - before I was even old enough to know that I was supposed to find her attractive. She became a hero for me before she was sex symbol to me. Maybe I'm fortunate that way, and that could have helped shape the way I view women. I can't say that I'm not sexist, as we all have implicit biases that are cultivated by the patriarchal society we live in (SJW in the house, what!), but I try to be a voice for equality wherever I can. With Carrie Fisher, I have always seen her as a rebel against the power, rather than simply the model of physical beauty that she was and always has been.

Bless you, Carrie. I will miss you.

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