Well make a show where the female leads are competent,

Discussion in 'TV & Media' started by Star Wolf, Mar 7, 2009.

  1. Alidar Jarok

    Alidar Jarok Everything in moderation but moderation Moderator

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    Beadie was competent and Kima was more than competent. The ASA (can't remember her name) also did a good job. It seemed all the fuck ups were men in that show (although the vast majority of the cast were men, so I guess that would make sense just by playing the numbers game).

    If we change genres and focus on LOST, I know Kate has problems (then again, so does Jack), but Juliet has been pretty good since she arrived. Is she a lead? I'm not quite sure, but she's had important roles at various points since her arrival and hasn't made too many dumb mistakes.
     
  2. Star Wolf

    Star Wolf Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    ASA Rhonda Pearlman iirc. The women reporters, school teachers, politicians and lobbiest were also all competent. Beadie was the least of all, her job consisted of riding around listening to the radio when she had the bodies dropped on her beat. By the end of the arc the other "real police" were commenting on how she now "had game"

    And lets not forget Snoop! She was up with Kima in competence, she just taught Michael too well:devil:
     
  3. Hermiod

    Hermiod Admiral Admiral

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    What TV shows do this ? Most shows have women running in, beating up five guys twice their size and saving the day. Dollhouse is the new one, with Eliza Dushku knocking out huge hulking security guards with one punch and throwing hardened criminals up against lockers and holding them there.

    The only show I can think of that actively kept its female lead out of action scenes was Stargate: Atlantis and there was a reason for that - they wanted Dr. Weir to be a specifically peaceful character to the point where she would never even be seen carrying a gun. They more than compensated for that with the invulnerable Super Ninja Teyla. I don't think that woman lost a fight in five years. She even beat up Ronon - the 6'4" guy who kills Wraith with his bare hands - in practice sessions.

    I almost believe Enterprise should be praised for having T'Pol become, effectively, a drug addict. They didn't hide her away when the action started, though.

    I suppose that's why I enjoy Battlestar Galactica so much. Every single important human character in that show, and some of the Cylons too, is a screw up in one way or another.

    In more mainstream television, the almost inevitable path female characters follow is that they will get married, have a child and then become a single mother. They will juggle their career, motherhood and dating perfectly and succeed at all three.

    I think people replying to this thread will really struggle to identify more than a few female lead characters on television who are genuinely incompetent.
     
  4. Ben Sisko3

    Ben Sisko3 Commodore Commodore

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    I'm surprised no one's yet mentioned Dr. Elizabeth Weir.
     
  5. Trekker4747

    Trekker4747 Boldly going... Premium Member

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    Nope. I pretty much think she's still hot, and am not against her.

    :)
     
  6. Hermiod

    Hermiod Admiral Admiral

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    I did mention her in the post directly above yours, but I do not agree that she was incompetent.

    She was kept out of participating directly in action scenes - she never carried or used a gun (except while possessed by an alien) - but she was hardly incompetent. In fact, she was presented as a super-competent, infallible superheroine just like most modern day female television characters.
     
  7. Rii

    Rii Rear Admiral

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    Ana Lucia on Lost. She wasn't incompetent, but she was certainly flawed in ways that affected her professional performance. I don't imagine there are many non-comedic characters on television who could be described as totally incompetent, period. Who wants to watch that?

    On a vaguely related note, I'm currently re-watching one of my favourite anime series, Noir, and it's only now occurred to me that it contains no recurring male characters at all. :lol:
     
  8. Star Wolf

    Star Wolf Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Actually this was inspired because it was said a reason for NCIS's popularity was that women were finally shown as competent. And I asking were are women seen as incompetent and not as Xena?
     
  9. Hermiod

    Hermiod Admiral Admiral

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    I think you have your answer in the fact that we are seriously struggling to come up with examples. The portrayal of female characters over compensates so badly now that I'm struggling to think of one realistic female character on TV.
     
  10. Star Wolf

    Star Wolf Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I've thought of one, however the error has been corrected, The Unit. I have heard serious people propose the US Army Special Forces recruit women. And not for the G.I. Jane or Ranger mission role but to use in operations like shown on the Unit and to train female soldiers in the Green Beret's specialist role
     
  11. Hermiod

    Hermiod Admiral Admiral

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    ^That's my point. If people are watching NCIS specifically because the women are "competent" then that must mean that the majority of women on other shows are incompetent.

    However, there are a lot of shows on American TV and so far I don't think we've come up with a genuinely incompetent female character. We've come up with a few characters individual posters don't like, but that doesn't mean they're incompetent.

    The default level is super-competence. The idea that Sara Sidle on CSI was an alcoholic was season finale cliffhanger material. It's a big deal when a woman on an American TV show makes a mistake.
     
  12. Rii

    Rii Rear Admiral

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    ... for either sex. Most characters outside comedic roles are competent at what they do, male or female.
     
  13. Alidar Jarok

    Alidar Jarok Everything in moderation but moderation Moderator

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    Hermiod, Kate's not shown as always competent on Lost if you want a character. I know I've seen other incompetent women on shows (I just can't think of any off the top of my head because they're usually unpopular characters and get written out quickly).
     
  14. IndyJones

    IndyJones Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Agreed. TV has done the bumbling husband/competent wife schtick has been done to death.

    And commercials are even worse.
     
  15. Hermiod

    Hermiod Admiral Admiral

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    We're not defining "competent" and "incompetent" very well here. I take competent to mean that they're good at their jobs. Kate doesn't even have a job. She has tasks to fulfill in an average episode, sure, and invariably she achieves what she sets out to do. Lost also has Juliet who is written like she's the goddamn Batman.

    I'm not going to jump on the Kate-Hate bandwagon because at least she's presented as a person with flaws rather than yet another Mary Sue.
     
  16. Alidar Jarok

    Alidar Jarok Everything in moderation but moderation Moderator

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    It was my assumption that you were complaining that female characters on shows had no flaws, while male characters do. If you're just talking about jobs, I'd have to give it some more thought (although Sarah in CSI has been less than professional at times, all characters there are presented as competent, so that doesn't count either).