What women can learn from Hunger Games: Catching Fire



I’m what you call a dirty feminist. I acknowledge women being discriminated against in regards to wages, medical and public policy… The list goes on.  So I get the low-key feminist manifesto in the Hunger Games. Although the first movie was a bit over the top with it (especially that wuss-ass Peeta Mellark character. I wanted to kill him myself.), I found the sequel to be more believable. Yes, Katniss Everdeen is the Joan of Arc (I get the Catching Fire reference) of this futuristic society. Cool. Suzanne Collins, the author (I knew the author was a female before I researched it), gets more and more subtle with the she-empowerment. The name of Katniss is a cute one. Women generally favor cats as pets and when they get petty are referred to as being catty. Ms. C is doing what she can to flip the negative connotation to something positive through Katniss. (Hey, she could have went buckwild and tried to give new meaning to cunt word white women swear is the ultimate insult.) Okay.

The dirty feminist in me found the Catching Fire installment of Hunger Games more agreeable. The first one had Peeta whining up under the cool and distant Katniss like a beeyatch! Dude was complaining that she never opened up to him, agonized over whether he was liked by everyone and was falling and tripping over everything every time they were running for their lives in the woods. The role reversal was way too obvious.  He didn’t have to be Superman but, damn dude….

This leads into how hard my wife and other women championed the first film. I always figured that, in an ideal, true instances, the discriminated can rise up and hold their own along with everyone else, as opposed to falling for the same oppressor’s either/or pissing contests they swear they despise when the pendulum swings their way.  I see this a lot. I even hear such language from women in regards to academia, language along the lines of “we need to clean all these men out of power positions.” As if them just being men were the problem. As if the ideal leader is someone just because they’re female. As if the gender alone will do the trick (no pun intended with the trick reference). I’ve seen organizations suffer under horrible leaders that were women. In these instances, sisters tend to blow those disasters off of those not being real authentic women. The gender wasn’t the issue. How ‘bout they just sucked as people? How ‘bout cleaning dysfunctional, mean-spirited, petty men and women up outta here? Dirty feminism is men that recognize women have a struggle, help out with it when they can, but refuse to let that be an excuse for such women to abuse and disrespect them. Women looking to dog out and completely do away with a man not because of his judgment but just because he’s a man are no better than the people they suffered under in the first place. It happens in organizations all the way down to good guys being completely destroyed in relationships. The dirt of a dirty feminist will let women know this and will check that ass to the fullest in related matters.  Misogyny being replaced by misandry is just as wack.

I really loved Angelina Jolie in SALT. I dug Meg Ryan in Courage Under Fire. Demi Moore in G.I. Jane… ehhh, not as much. Nevertheless, those films show the female protagonist as a hero motif can be done respectably when there’s believable balance.

Balance. That’s all. Natural balance. This is what I saw more of in the sequel to Hunger Games. Peeta grew a pair and did a few assertive things, though clearly everything is all about Katniss. Fine, long as that zero contribution from males shit is a wrap. There was some uber-vain blond pretty boy that turned out to be an ally, as was the architect of the game. They were made not to be liked, but you understood what they brought to the table. Nobody of any color seemed to last in this revolution though. This is a major bone to pick. I get the politic game going on. Still, a sister or a brother needs to be representing in this revolution of the disenfranchised! If one thing history and this more balanced Hunger Games sequel proves, a revolution needs right-minded people, of all types, to set things straight.


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