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Oh look, a can of worms!


I've had debates on this journal before about misogyny in Supernatural (and horror in general), and I'm not really asking for another one...but I thought I would point out that Joey Comeau has a great blog-post up at his horror-movie review blog: into survival

Is there a place for rape in horror? The Hills Have Eyes 2006

In it he contrasts the rape scene in The Hills Have Eyes remake (which he hated) to the rape scene in The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo (which he thought was well done). I think he makes some great points personally, though I'm biased because he seems to share my own opinions.

Anyway, I just thought I'd point anyone interested over to it. You don't have to agree, but it's food for thought. I'm also not saying that this excuses those scenes in Supernatural that some of my flist objected to - as Joey implies, whether it is handle correctly can sometimes be very subjective.

There are also interesting comments (including responses from Joey) in the comments section of the blog.

Comments

( 11 comments — Leave a comment )
mymuseandi
Jan. 26th, 2011 07:59 am (UTC)
I haven't actually watched the two movies that he was talking about, but one of the commenters was talking about Shutter, which I have seen, and the rape scene that he mentioned serves as a twist to the plot. I won't give anything away, but it was pretty horrifying for me to watch.

I'm not exactly firing all cylinders right now, but what scenes in SPN were being objected to? Sam/Ruby? Or Dean/Anna? Because i can't think of any other scenes.
hells_half_acre
Jan. 26th, 2011 08:06 am (UTC)
I don't think anyone objected to Dean/Anna.

I know people objected to Sam/Ruby, because they felt that even when empty, Ruby's body still counted as an innocent girl...though, I objected to it the other way - in that I felt it was Sam who was raped in that scene in 4x09 (though, I didn't object to it being depicted, I was just horrified for poor Sammy...I realize I'm in the minority on this for some reason. I guess I'm more sensitive to emotionally-manipulative rape rather than violent rape.)

I think the most recent thing that offended some of my flist was the scene in Caged Heat when 'Meg' was being tortured - not quite rape, but very similar, especially on how you interpreted what 'Christian' was doing with that knife.

Also, just in general, people have objected to the more sexual aspect to the assault on female characters in the show - the only example I can think of right now is that ghost molesting Jo in No Exit, but I guess there were more? (I'm not exactly firing on all cylinders either.)
duowolf
Jan. 27th, 2011 04:03 pm (UTC)
Is it bad that I can't even remember there being a rape scene in The Hills Have Eyes.

That said I can't actully rember the last movie I watched that had a rape scene in it fullstop and I watch a lot of movies and mostly horror/crime ones at that.
hells_half_acre
Jan. 27th, 2011 04:26 pm (UTC)
Yeah, I can't remember one either - though, I figured it was just because I don't watch horror movies. (Supernatural is as close to horror as I can get).

That being said, I know a couple of movies where rape sets up the plot...last house on the left...I spit on your grave... I didn't see the Hills Have Eyes, but I figure probably what Joey takes exception to is that fact that the rape scene probably IS forgettable and superficial, and not important - so why have it? Especially given the fact that having any sort of sexual assault scene runs the risk of alienating or doing harm to the audience.

Wow...sorry, got rambley. Anyway...yeah, I don't watch horror. I used to watch crime shows, but much like Dean, I got sick of them. So, I can't remember the last movie/show I watched with a rape scene either.
duowolf
Jan. 27th, 2011 05:22 pm (UTC)
The thing with last house on the left and espically I spit on your grave(orginals and remakes) is that they are movies about the victem getting revenge on the people that have hurt them in such a way and as such wouldn't make as much sense without the rape.

You might be right about the hills have eyes it was a long time ago that I saw it and I've really forgotten almost everything that happened in it.

I love crime shows but the ones I watch most deal with murder rather then other crimes and as you might be able to guess I love horror movies as well. :)
hells_half_acre
Jan. 27th, 2011 05:25 pm (UTC)
Yes, sorry, that's what I meant when I said that the rape scene was important to the plot...or whatever words I used. I meant that the movie hinged on the fact that there had been a rape.

I used to watch CSI a lot, but got tired of it. Though, I guess now I'm really into Sherlock and that's essentially a crime show! But yeah, despite my love for Supernatural, I can't watch horror movies...they are far too scary.
duowolf
Jan. 27th, 2011 06:19 pm (UTC)
I've never found horror films scary,even as a kid because I always knew they weren't real.

The only one that has scared me was Event Horizen I don't know what it is about that movie but it scares me like nothing else. I've never been able to look at Sam Neill the way after that.
marlowe78
Feb. 1st, 2011 08:48 pm (UTC)
This was a good link, I liked his thoughts on the subject. Thanks for that.

Did you watch "Sleepers"? When I was ... dunno, sixteen? Somewhere around that, I watched it the first time in the cinema.
Anyway, I remember that I was stunned and shocked and horrified by the rape of those boys, even though it was not in the least graphic. I was watching for Brad Pitt then, and never even suspected anything so horrible. It shocked me to the core, and that movie still makes me shiver.

Why go worse? It was more than enough to show what was done, what happened, and more importantly, what it did to those poor kids.
Why are movies like "Saw" and "Hostel" so delightful? It creeps me out, not so much the movies (I just don't watch them) but the fact that people DO watch them.

I agree with you that it's much more hassle to be imaginative, to create horror without gore (or only a little gore), and since apparently people come and watch others be tortured and raped, why invest in some plot and in actors who are able to look so shattered and act so distraught that implied rape and implied torture is enough to make people want to cry in sympathy.

While Supernatural (of course I'd go there!) has gotten more gory and especially s5 lacked imaginative bad guys (it were angels or demons, nothing much else), it still is able to creep me out.
Creepy as all Hell?

"All dogs go to Heaven"

Maybe you need to have a dog to appreciate the horror of it, like you maybe need a kid to appreciate the horror of "The Kids are alright" or the one with the zombie-boy eating his father, but still, THAT was creepy.

And the implied rape of Meg was unnecessary and not important for the plot, while at the same time, Sam-Meg molesting Jo in "Born under a bad sign" was creepy and scary and more than enough to make me shiver.

Sorry. Rambly. I'll shut it now...
hells_half_acre
Feb. 1st, 2011 10:03 pm (UTC)
I'm with you on the Saw and Hostel movies...I can't watch them. Well, in general, I can't watch any horror (I've never seen sleepers)...but I don't like seeing things like that. My imagination is bad enough without other people possibly making it worse.

The scene of Meg!Sam molesting Jo in BUABS was very effective, I thought, because at that point we (like Jo) didn't know that Sam was possessed...so it was horrifying because we didn't know what the hell was wrong with Sam...or at least, that's why it was horrifying for *me*. But yeah, the scene with Meg in S6 was a little pointless, they could have made the torture less sexual and still accomplished what they wanted with the scene.

But yeah...interesting stuff, anyway.

And I agree - All dogs go to heaven is creepy when you have pets. I watch at a friend's place and she has two cats who frequently sit there and stare at us unblinkingly while we watch Supernatural...I remember it being extra creepy that night ;)
marlowe78
Feb. 1st, 2011 10:30 pm (UTC)
Duuude, you don't know Sleepers?
It's not horror, and even though I spoiled you about some very important issues, it's an awesome, awesome movie that focuses not so much on the hurt but more on the revenge. And no, it's not a bloody revenge, a great, smart revenge.

You should watch that movie! I swear, we don't SEE anything. And you can do as me, hide your eyes.
hells_half_acre
Feb. 1st, 2011 10:32 pm (UTC)
Ok *shrug* ...I'll make a mental note of it. But, that being said, I haven't been watching many movies lately...just haven't been in the mood.

Actually, a friend loaned me Lars and the Real Girl back in September and I have yet to watch it. I really should. She probably wants it back at some point :P
( 11 comments — Leave a comment )

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