Friday, March 15, 2013

More powerful (fictional) women: Why Veronica Mars matters too

Veronica Mars, the movie

 In case you haven’t already heard, I’d like to bring your attention to the Kickstarter campaign to fund the Veronica Mars movie which has already broken some records. For example: Within the first ten hours, the fans reached the goal of $2,000,000 pledged, and the number is still climbing. The atmosphere in the comment section is electric. For this fandom, it’s already a big victory.

Of course, there have been critical voices along the lines of “aren’t there more relevant causes?”

There’s a short answer to that. Whatever we think, it’s none of our business what these people do with their money (well, as long as it's legal).

What it can and can't do--and why it still should exist

Let’s take a closer look though: There has been some improvement over the recent years, but smart capable female characters in TV/movies are still underrepresented. Insofar, yes, whatever helps with that, is a good cause in my opinion. There are multiple reasons for the existing inequality--not enough women in those places where final decisions about what we get to see are made. Not enough advertisers who believe that as a society, we have outgrown the 1950s, that women earn their own money, and “specialized” pink liqueur or an ePad with apps for dieting or such might not be their priority. It’s a vicious cycle. As an audience, we seldom have an opportunity like this to make The Powers That Be, the decision-makers, listen.

The result “You can’t be what you can’t see.” as the documentary Miss Representation has taught us.

One movie isn’t going to change all that. Brave isn’t going to liberate all little girls (and boys) from the patriarchal ideas that will be thrown at them. A movie about a young woman detective is not going to start a revolution. It’s a piece of the puzzle, though, one more that’s falling into place.

That is why this campaign matters too.

 The sloth (loosely connected to the matter at hand)

If all of this isn’t enough reason for you, check out what happens when Kristen Bell learns that a sloth might "attend" her birthday party. It’s beyond adorable. How could you say no?

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