dupery asked:

I agree w/ what you just said about Joss Whedon and rape wrt Loki. What I struggle with though is whether having NO instances of rape culture in a work (especially when the work involves violence, as action/superhero movies do) would be denying that such a thing exists in the real world. It's a real problem and Loki is a villain so DOES that excuse the gendered violence and threats or not? Is it better that creators tiptoe around an issue to avoid even calling it out? Idk, thoughts?

swingsetindecember answered:

okay, rape exists

it’s like a hard cold fact of life

but in a superhero film, where you’re supposed to leave the theatre feeling empowered and awesome - you don’t, because what was supposed to be escapism from real life where rape happens and everything is shitty, you can’t even enjoy a superhero film without the only female character with leading dialogue to get threatened with rape

and on top of it, rape happens to men AND women but every female hero to prove she’s so strong and gritty has to deal with rape or attempted rape. like wtf


like, did bruce banner get threaten to be raped by clint? no. did captain america with his face off with loki get threaten with rape? no. 

the whole scene could have been rewritten. loki still could have been threatening 

male villains when threatening male heroes never bring up rape. they’re always like, I’LL KILL U AND ALL YOU LOVE. they’re never, I’MMA GONNA RAPE YOU AND YOUR LITTLE DOG TOO. 

like there’s a place for addressing rape. and having it in film. but in a superhero film where sexual abuse isn’t even the centralized plot, why is it being put it? and as a throwaway one liner? and never addressed again nor is loki being punished for it, he’s punished for attacking new york. not for saying he was going to rape black widow

and the film is rated pg-13 and for violence with guns and whatev. there’s no warning about sexual abuse.

like, no man left that theatre feeling shitty. they were empowered. like hell yeah. and like, women leaving the theatre were like, sigh even black widow has to deal with rape threats. 

in a film that suspends belief in frozen ww2 supersoldiers, aliens, norse gods and flying robot men, we still need a scene to remind women that rape is still so prevalent it’s the top threat a VILLAIN FROM ANOTHER PLANET AND DIFFERENT BELIEF SYSTEM WITH SEE THE NEED TO THREATEN ANOTHER SPECIES WITH

like, wtf

first, the creators aren’t trying to make a political statement about gendered violence. that was never the goal of the avengers assembled film. so the idea that they somehow were like, yeah let’s deal with gendered violence by this scene is utter bullshit. it’s sexism. when you want to make a male hero feel threatened you kill his loved one or like threaten his home. when you want to make a female hero feel threatened you rape her or threaten to do it. which is bullshit writing and the tropiest of tropes of lazy writing. like, telling captain america, i’m going to kill you and then like, telling black widow, i’m going to rape you and then kill you. is like misogynistic bullshit. it’s not a conscience effort of the writers to call out gendered violence. it’s just sexist writing

so yes, gendered violence should be addressed in media. but again, there’s platforms that would handle it better. like, do you expect the next pixar to have a character threaten to rape someone? no. because it’s pixar. same goes with superhero films. these are supposed to be uplifting films. 

and the writers wanted to handle gendered violence in a superhero film, it should be handled better than a quippy one liner. the scene where loki threatens black widow with rape isn’t some awe inspiring scene that the writers were like, see we handled the hard issues here. they did not. at all. this was just misogynistic writing and no way was it geared towards highlighting how problematic rape is. 

also, the film has a vastly unequal representation to begin with. such that, black widow is again the only female on screen that the female audience is relating to. unless maria hill who is behind the scenes or pepper potts who is waiting on an airplane or the waitress. meanwhile, male audience get thor, captain america, old man that stands up to loki, the hulk, clint, tony stark, coulson, fury, police men, loki, random aliens, etc. 

so the question of tiptoeing around an issue, well the film doesn’t even deal with rape until loki threatens black widow with rape. like, it wasn’t even in the story. and why would it be? this film is supposed to be about aliens invading new york. not a film about sexual violence. if it were, the film should be rated higher. but again, the scope of avengers isn’t that. and for that to be put in there, reeks of sexism and misogyny and what a big fartbag of dicks joss whedon is

also one of the biggest problems is how media normalizes rape culture. like, it’s totes normal that she got threatened with rape. totes. like FUCK NO. the main problem is how films with just normalize this behaviour and make rapists think oh, well, it was totally normal here, so it must be okay. so if rape culture appears on film or media, it needs to be highlighted AS FUCKING HELL HOW WRONG AND MESSED UP IT IS. but, that didn’t happen in the avengers. it should have since the writers clearly wanted to use rape in the film. so, that’s what’s wrong with joss whedon’s writing staff here

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