I’m on the Ms. Magazine facebook and they posted an article about the recent remake of Evil Dead.
Quickly a facebook user commented that Ms. should not be talking about fake things but real things and focus instead on the recent high-profile cases involving high-school students who were raped and subsequently bullied.
The person ended the comment with, “Fuck off with the tree rape.”
My response (slightly edited):
Perhaps [Jane Doe], you don’t remember the days when movies routinely showed rape as a form of seduction that often led to marriage or [a hit musical where a mother tells her daughter, in the context of an abusive husband, that sometimes a hit doesn’t hurt at all], and routinely established masculinity by having the leading man grab (and sometimes hit) a woman and kiss her while she struggled against him until she finally relented. I do.
I watched the original when my friends (who are fans of the series of movies) suggested it. After watching the original scene, I was very upset. The way it was presented was very disturbing and gratuitous, and was similar to other B-movies at the time that would routinely have the token rape-scene in order to appeal to their target demographic of young men; the token rape was generally presented as sort of a laugh.
When I heard there was a remake, I was wondering if they were going to take that scene out, or what they were going to do about it. I was hoping that the artists and the fans were mature enough to cut the scene out completely; and when I heard it was still in there, I was disappointed and frankly felt betrayed.
I’m very thankful that Ms. decided to talk about it. I usually don’t like spoilers – but there was no way I was going to see this movie without knowing what to expect. My faith in the artists and my peers is restored to a great degree.
Of course everyone is upset by the recent high-profile cases involving bullying and rape. What you might not understand is that this article is related to that. The culture that once created movie-after-movie targeted at teenagers that depicted rape as a bit of a laugh, and enabled groups of men to watch a woman on a screen be humiliated and over-powered as sexual light-entertainment; while anyone that complained was branded some sort of ugly lesbian feminists prude bitch telling everyone what to do; that is the same culture that socially allows boys to have a bit of a laugh by raping someone and bragging about it – like it’s not a big deal; and not see a girl as part of the story, as human, as even being an agent at all; and you know what happens if she complains.
I can understand that you think the focus is off here. If this isn’t something you personally care about, then please just ignore it.
I don’t need one more person shouting at me about how this just isn’t that big of a deal and I (or anyone else) should just shut up about it. I suggest that perhaps your focus is off.