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A step back with TLOU II Casting (Fan Creations)

by Cody Miller @, Music of the Spheres - Never Forgot, Thursday, January 11, 2024, 10:52 (196 days ago)

https://www.hollywoodreporter.com/tv/tv-news/kaitlyn-dever-last-of-us-season-2-abby-1235782912/

Kaitlyn Dever has been cast as Abby in Last of Us Part II.

Now, the game was absolutely terrible in its contempt for the feminine, but Abby being muscular and non conventionally feminine was not the cause of that. I had no problem per se with her appearance; my issue was the aggregate subjugation, negative judgement, and punishing of femininity present overall in the world.

In a way, I feel like the casting is a step back. I guess HBO is too nervous to have a straight masculine female lead. It's interesting that HBO would not go for this when they are generally okay with pushing boundaries. The idiotic gamergate reaction to Abby's appearance illustrates just how much we need to get past our collective unease about masculine straight women with sexual agency in our narratives.

I have to say, this was an opportunity for something culturally valuable, and I can't help but feel like they didn't take it and played it safe.

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A step back with TLOU II Casting

by Kermit @, Raleigh, NC, Thursday, January 11, 2024, 13:17 (196 days ago) @ Cody Miller

Interested in what you think about "Poor Things." Female empowerment, or male fantasy about female empowerment?

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A step back with TLOU II Casting

by Cody Miller @, Music of the Spheres - Never Forgot, Thursday, January 11, 2024, 13:57 (196 days ago) @ Kermit

Interested in what you think about "Poor Things." Female empowerment, or male fantasy about female empowerment?

I'm sure by the time I see it this thread will be locked and I'll have to start a new one :-/

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A step back with TLOU II Casting

by Kermit @, Raleigh, NC, Thursday, January 11, 2024, 20:33 (196 days ago) @ Cody Miller
edited by Kermit, Thursday, January 11, 2024, 20:40

Interested in what you think about "Poor Things." Female empowerment, or male fantasy about female empowerment?


I'm sure by the time I see it this thread will be locked and I'll have to start a new one :-/

Go to the theater! I think I enjoyed it more with an audience than I would have otherwise. Of course it was the Alamo, where they discourage bad behavior.

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A step back with TLOU II Casting

by Cody Miller @, Music of the Spheres - Never Forgot, Thursday, January 11, 2024, 22:40 (196 days ago) @ Kermit

Interested in what you think about "Poor Things." Female empowerment, or male fantasy about female empowerment?


I'm sure by the time I see it this thread will be locked and I'll have to start a new one :-/


Go to the theater! I think I enjoyed it more with an audience than I would have otherwise. Of course it was the Alamo, where they discourage bad behavior.

Not sure there's going to be much of an audience at 1:10pm on a Thursday, but okay. You convinced me.

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A step back with TLOU II Casting

by Kermit @, Raleigh, NC, Friday, January 12, 2024, 07:36 (195 days ago) @ Cody Miller

Interested in what you think about "Poor Things." Female empowerment, or male fantasy about female empowerment?


I'm sure by the time I see it this thread will be locked and I'll have to start a new one :-/


Go to the theater! I think I enjoyed it more with an audience than I would have otherwise. Of course it was the Alamo, where they discourage bad behavior.


Not sure there's going to be much of an audience at 1:10pm on a Thursday, but okay. You convinced me.

Cool. I think the visuals deserve a theatrical viewing.

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A step back with TLOU II Casting

by Cody Miller @, Music of the Spheres - Never Forgot, Friday, January 12, 2024, 16:13 (195 days ago) @ Kermit

Female empowerment, or male fantasy about female empowerment?

Neither?

It didn't seem to be about that, but rather the examination of oppressive structures and customs through the eyes of someone naive to it all. I don't think at any point would I have called her character empowered.

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A step back with TLOU II Casting

by Kermit @, Raleigh, NC, Friday, January 12, 2024, 19:41 (195 days ago) @ Cody Miller

Female empowerment, or male fantasy about female empowerment?


Neither?

It didn't seem to be about that, but rather the examination of oppressive structures and customs through the eyes of someone naive to it all. I don't think at any point would I have called her character empowered.

That was just a prompt, based on common interpretations. I’m still getting my head around what the movie means. That said, if you think at NO moment was the main character empowered, that makes me wonder if we saw the same movie. Mainly, I just want to know what you thought about generally, as a movie. Did you enjoy it?

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A step back with TLOU II Casting

by Cody Miller @, Music of the Spheres - Never Forgot, Friday, January 12, 2024, 20:25 (195 days ago) @ Kermit
edited by Cody Miller, Friday, January 12, 2024, 20:37

Female empowerment, or male fantasy about female empowerment?


Neither?

It didn't seem to be about that, but rather the examination of oppressive structures and customs through the eyes of someone naive to it all. I don't think at any point would I have called her character empowered.


That was just a prompt, based on common interpretations. I’m still getting my head around what the movie means. That said, if you think at NO moment was the main character empowered, that makes me wonder if we saw the same movie. Mainly, I just want to know what you thought about generally, as a movie. Did you enjoy it?

Yes, it was completely hilarious.

As for what it means, I think it's arguing for a balanced approach to life. At first it seems to skewer the way contemporary society looks at poverty and sex. Why not just have rich people give poor people money? Why not just have sex any time you want if it feels good?

But as the cynic pointed out, this ignores the wickedness in the world which is unfixable. Someone will always take advantage. You can't eliminate it entirely. Someone like the Sailors will always steal the money. Someone like Duncan or Alfie will always try to trap women. Or even other women, as in the case of the Madam.

In the end, she inflicts a little cruelty of her own by killing the frog for amusement, and later turning Alfie into a goat (and seems to enjoy it). So sin is always in the world and within ourselves. Thus, we must balance the life of the Id and SuperEgo.

Also the garden of Eden metaphor bothered me, since "God" was not spiritual at all, but rather coldly scientific. So it doesn't make much sense to have his house be the garden, and her first discovery of self pleasure be with the forbidden fruit (a literal apple). If anything, he was supportive of her leaving and he did not inflict upon her original sin. Note she killed the frog BEFORE she used the apple.

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A step back with TLOU II Casting

by Kermit @, Raleigh, NC, Saturday, January 13, 2024, 06:15 (194 days ago) @ Cody Miller

Glad you liked it. I liked Emma Stone’s description—that it’s a romcom where the main character falls in love with the world.

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A step back with TLOU II Casting

by Cody Miller @, Music of the Spheres - Never Forgot, Saturday, January 13, 2024, 10:47 (194 days ago) @ Kermit

Glad you liked it. I liked Emma Stone’s description—that it’s a romcom where the main character falls in love with the world.

The world of MAN. While watching it struck me she never really traveled or experienced anything natural; everything was built by people. Cities. Boats. Houses and laboratories. Nothing in the state of nature so to speak. The park at the start was the closest, but this is curated nature.

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A step back with TLOU II Casting

by Kermit @, Raleigh, NC, Tuesday, January 16, 2024, 07:05 (191 days ago) @ Cody Miller

Glad you liked it. I liked Emma Stone’s description—that it’s a romcom where the main character falls in love with the world.


The world of MAN. While watching it struck me she never really traveled or experienced anything natural; everything was built by people. Cities. Boats. Houses and laboratories. Nothing in the state of nature so to speak. The park at the start was the closest, but this is curated nature.

I assume you are using MAN to mean mankind here? I find that criticism odd, in that it doesn't really fit the story. Would we criticize You've Got Mail because it never shows any of New York's two million rats? I think the movie is more or less a comedy of manners, which by definition occurs in the curated world. Bella is the natural thing, bouncing off the guard rails. And aren't some of those guard rails part of the structure that protects mankind from the predations of the natural world? I could imagine a scene where she reacts to the preternatural beauty of the ocean and sky (in this fictional world), but does serve the theme? Everything has to fit. But maybe we're coming up against the limits of Emma Stone's description.

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A step back with TLOU II Casting

by Cody Miller @, Music of the Spheres - Never Forgot, Tuesday, January 16, 2024, 10:12 (191 days ago) @ Kermit

Glad you liked it. I liked Emma Stone’s description—that it’s a romcom where the main character falls in love with the world.


The world of MAN. While watching it struck me she never really traveled or experienced anything natural; everything was built by people. Cities. Boats. Houses and laboratories. Nothing in the state of nature so to speak. The park at the start was the closest, but this is curated nature.


I assume you are using MAN to mean mankind here? I find that criticism odd, in that it doesn't really fit the story.

It's a criticism of her description of the story.

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by Anna Komnene, Thursday, January 11, 2024, 19:38 (196 days ago) @ Cody Miller
edited by Anna Komnene, Thursday, January 11, 2024, 19:45

But your "TLOU2 doesn't like feminine women post" is lol. lmfao, even.

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I normally try to do my best to respond evenly

by Cody Miller @, Music of the Spheres - Never Forgot, Thursday, January 11, 2024, 22:31 (196 days ago) @ Anna Komnene
edited by Cody Miller, Thursday, January 11, 2024, 22:34

But your "TLOU2 doesn't like feminine women post" is lol. lmfao, even.

I wouldn't characterize the argument that way. The world of the game actively suppresses and punishes feminine expressions, qualities, and ideals. How people think the game is 'woke' is so beyond me.

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by Anna Komnene, Friday, January 12, 2024, 05:26 (195 days ago) @ Cody Miller

Nah. The story just happens to focus on "masculine" women (I wouldn't really consider Ellie to be all that "masculine," anyway). Stories are allowed to focus on different types of people.

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by Cody Miller @, Music of the Spheres - Never Forgot, Friday, January 12, 2024, 07:36 (195 days ago) @ Anna Komnene
edited by Cody Miller, Friday, January 12, 2024, 07:58

Nah. The story just happens to focus on "masculine" women (I wouldn't really consider Ellie to be all that "masculine," anyway). Stories are allowed to focus on different types of people.

They absolutely are allowed to focus on different types of people. And normally that’s fine. But it’s not “just” focusing on masculine women. The world as a whole, the entire story, suppresses and frames femininity as weak. Feminine depiction is almost entirely absent, and the women who do are tortured and harmed the most violently. They are not allowed.

That’s the problem in my opinion. I don’t care that any one or two characters are how they are, but the aggregate message and attitudes the story puts forward are rather gross.

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by Anna Komnene, Friday, January 12, 2024, 12:57 (195 days ago) @ Cody Miller

No it doesn't -- it treats all its characters like shit.

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by Cody Miller @, Music of the Spheres - Never Forgot, Friday, January 12, 2024, 16:05 (195 days ago) @ Anna Komnene
edited by Cody Miller, Friday, January 12, 2024, 16:10

No it doesn't -- it treats all its characters like shit.

Disagree.

Owen: Dies instantly.
Jessie: Dies instantly.
Manny: Dies instantly.
Isaac: Dies instantly.

Mel: Slowly stabbed, agonizing death
Yara: Arm brutally mutilated, severed, then riddled with bullets. Agonizing death.
Nora: Tortured by Ellie then bludgeoned. Agonizing death
Abby, Ellie, Dina: Do not die, but are horribly abused and tortured throughout.

Weird how all the men who die seem to get off easy, no?

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by Coaxkez, Friday, January 12, 2024, 16:45 (195 days ago) @ Cody Miller

Joel: Shot, restrained, and beaten to death in front of Ellie with a golf club. Agonizing death.

Joel is a woman?

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by Cody Miller @, Music of the Spheres - Never Forgot, Friday, January 12, 2024, 16:58 (195 days ago) @ Coaxkez

Joel: Shot, restrained, and beaten to death in front of Ellie with a golf club. Agonizing death.

Joel is a woman?

Sort of. They fridged him!

Or maybe he deserved it? Who can say.

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by Coaxkez, Saturday, January 13, 2024, 11:55 (194 days ago) @ Cody Miller
edited by Coaxkez, Saturday, January 13, 2024, 12:03

I don’t know what you’re trying to argue at this point. Who defines “feminine expression”? Is that something you are well-suited to judge as a man? Are you saying that The Last of Us Part II is misogynistic because it does not feature the types of gender expressions you would prefer to see?

(I assume that you do have a preference because you are using the term “feminine expressions” to describe things like wearing a dress, which implies that those expressions are feminine while others are not.)

Correct me if I’m wrong, but it seems like you are basically saying that femininity is a fixed concept which does not (or should not?) change and evolve over time or in response to shifting circumstances. To me, this is a pretty weak argument. Then again, I’m the guy who defended the soldiers at Fallujah.

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by Cody Miller @, Music of the Spheres - Never Forgot, Saturday, January 13, 2024, 12:21 (194 days ago) @ Coaxkez
edited by Cody Miller, Saturday, January 13, 2024, 12:33

I don’t know what you’re trying to argue at this point. Who defines “feminine expression”? Is that something you are well-suited to judge as a man? Are you saying that The Last of Us Part II is misogynistic because it does not feature the types of gender expressions you would prefer to see?

No. The issue is that in the world of the game, every woman must conform to the same masculine gender ideals. There is a homogeny rather than a diversity. I would prefer to see a wide range of expressions from men, women, and those who identify as neither, without judgement. It is misogynistic because it has a contempt for femininity.

(I assume that you do have a preference because you are using the term “feminine expressions” to describe things like wearing a dress, which implies that those expressions are feminine while others are not.)

That is an example as a traditional, easy to spot display. The fact that both sexes exclusively wear masculine clothing is only one supporting piece of evidence to suggest the erasure of the feminine in the world of the game.

Correct me if I’m wrong, but it seems like you are basically saying that femininity is a fixed concept which does not (or should not?) change and evolve over time or in response to shifting circumstances. To me, this is a pretty weak argument. Then again, I’m the guy who defended the soldiers at Fallujah.

No, it's not fixed at all. You are correct! However this is an example of it being erased, not changed. Women aren't embracing alternative forms of femininity; they are just becoming men. And those that don't, suffer in the narrative disproportionately to male characters.

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by Coaxkez, Saturday, January 13, 2024, 12:51 (194 days ago) @ Cody Miller

Women aren't embracing alternative forms of femininity; they are just becoming men. And those that don't, suffer in the narrative disproportionately to male characters.

Your argument hinges on this point, but I don’t see that you’ve actually proven it.

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by Anna Komnene, Friday, January 12, 2024, 18:42 (195 days ago) @ Cody Miller

PSVita lady dies quick. Tommy loses his marriage and an eye. Joel gets beaten to death. Lev gets tortured along with Abby.

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by Cody Miller @, Music of the Spheres - Never Forgot, Saturday, January 13, 2024, 12:44 (194 days ago) @ Anna Komnene

PSVita lady dies quick. Tommy loses his marriage and an eye. Joel gets beaten to death. Lev gets tortured along with Abby.

I find Lev's case interesting, because Lev is a trans boy. The game presents Lev as having gender dysphoria, and the last straw that spurred his transition was his arranged marriage as a child bride. So he shaved his head and fled. Lev discarded the feminine altogether. The implication being that had he not done so, he would not have escaped oppression.

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by Anna Komnene, Saturday, January 13, 2024, 14:29 (194 days ago) @ Cody Miller

Cool, so what about the others?

I honestly have no idea what you're even saying. What, you want some women to walk around in dresses or something? What use is a dress when your hiking across the country?

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by Cody Miller @, Music of the Spheres - Never Forgot, Saturday, January 13, 2024, 14:37 (194 days ago) @ Anna Komnene
edited by Cody Miller, Saturday, January 13, 2024, 14:40

Cool, so what about the others?

I honestly have no idea what you're even saying. What, you want some women to walk around in dresses or something? What use is a dress when your hiking across the country?

I feel like everyone is getting hung up on that example. It is an indicator of the game's contempt for the feminine. I am not saying every woman should wear a dress all the time. Don't be ridiculous. You wouldn't wear a dress while hiking, but you might want to wear one at dance. And yet, no women do. I looked. There are zero in the dance scene.

I'm not saying some women can't behave, dress, or act like men. I'm saying it's a problem when all of them have to. That is not progress or empowerment.

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by Anna Komnene, Saturday, January 13, 2024, 17:18 (194 days ago) @ Cody Miller

Oh no! There are no women wearing dresses in the dance scene. the horror :(

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by Coaxkez, Friday, January 12, 2024, 06:34 (195 days ago) @ Cody Miller

Would "feminine qualities" serve a woman very well during the zombie apocalypse?

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by Korny @, Dalton, Ga. US. Earth, Sol System, Friday, January 12, 2024, 07:07 (195 days ago) @ Coaxkez

Would "feminine qualities" serve a woman very well during the zombie apocalypse?

I swear to God if Cody uses the words “nurturing” or “motherly instinct”…

While I did love the original concept art of Abby being as wiry and disheveled as Ellie (hooray mirrors of the hero as antagonists!), any possible complaints about jacked Abby vaporized the second she gave an Infected a two-piece-with-drink before slamming them to the floor and stomping their head in.

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by Cody Miller @, Music of the Spheres - Never Forgot, Friday, January 12, 2024, 12:24 (195 days ago) @ Korny

Would "feminine qualities" serve a woman very well during the zombie apocalypse?


I swear to God if Cody uses the words “nurturing” or “motherly instinct”…

While I did love the original concept art of Abby being as wiry and disheveled as Ellie (hooray mirrors of the hero as antagonists!), any possible complaints about jacked Abby vaporized the second she gave an Infected a two-piece-with-drink before slamming them to the floor and stomping their head in.

After replaying the game, Abby’s build is actually a critical plot point. Ellie is only able to find her in California because people can describe her. “I traded with a woman built like an Ox” “She had arms like mine”. I suppose you could create some other kind of identifier, but it did strike me as more natural that her physical appearance made her stand out as memorable and easy to find.

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by Cody Miller @, Music of the Spheres - Never Forgot, Friday, January 12, 2024, 07:47 (195 days ago) @ Coaxkez
edited by Cody Miller, Friday, January 12, 2024, 07:56

Would "feminine qualities" serve a woman very well during the zombie apocalypse?

Yes.

First of all, your assumption is what the game makes; that physical strength and power structures of domination are the only way to thrive in such a world. It isn’t. Remember the wolf and scar conflict? Remember that there was a cease fire, until “some idiot started shooting?”. All that death could be avoided. Sadly the game passes over this idea as quickly as it comes up.

Secondly, Jackson is a functioning society isolated from all that. They have electricity and they farm stuff. And yet, it is a town of no feminine expression. Do you really think not a single woman at the dance would have wanted to wear a dress? You can wear what you want, but isn’t it weird not a single woman does? Or even a man choosing to be flamboyant? Such diversity of gender expression is absent.

Third, physical capability is not exclusively a masculine trait. When your life is on the line defend yourself. But it’s what happens in between that matters.

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by Coaxkez, Friday, January 12, 2024, 09:11 (195 days ago) @ Cody Miller

Mmm.

I agree with you more often than not on most other topics, but this is a stretch.

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by Cody Miller @, Music of the Spheres - Never Forgot, Friday, January 12, 2024, 09:59 (195 days ago) @ Coaxkez

Mmm.

I agree with you more often than not on most other topics, but this is a stretch.

I don't think it's a stretch to say the game disallows feminine gender expressions (without narrative punishment). That is pretty factual. The interpretation of that and what you think it means I can see being up in the air. I'm curious as to alternative readings of this.

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Sorry, is this DBO or /pol/?

by Coaxkez, Friday, January 12, 2024, 13:30 (195 days ago) @ Cody Miller

- No text -

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"no feminine expression"

by Anna Komnene, Friday, January 12, 2024, 14:53 (195 days ago) @ Cody Miller
edited by Anna Komnene, Friday, January 12, 2024, 14:56

What does that even mean?

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