In a recent issue of Bitch Magazine, Mary Elizabeth Winstead spoke about her work in the horror genre, trying to distance herself from the typical slasher, quantifying the typical (I would add young) women's horror role as "running around in a tank top, screaming."
A young woman in a tank top, running around screaming. I run those words over in my head as I look at my sordid Netflix queue. I think about the catalog of rape-revenge and other 'sploitation movies I have sat though. My international love of movies about people (almost exclusively men) responding violently to the sex trade, or kidnapping of wives and daughters, or an assassin becoming enamored of an orphan girl and killing a whole crime syndicate for sed girl. This in contrast to the number of times I've hit "not interested" to virtually every romance film that I see. It is fucked up that I will watch a zombie flick-- even a mediocre, rapey sci fi flick with Sarah Polley (Splice) rather than give the admittedly interesting love-themed indie film that she herself directed (Take This Waltz). I'm a feminist. I have survived just about every kind of awful fucking thing that can happen to a woman simply because she is a woman. And given the choice, I will take blood over romance every damn time.
1. I'm Just Not That Into Heterosexual Monogamy
A major problem is that I really don't give a fucking shit about marriage, soulmates, or monogamy. I don't get in the way of lgbt activists working to legitimize our presence within that institution. I simply want nothing to do with it myself. Frankly, I don't think straight people should be allowed to get married.
I know I'm just not in the majority here, even in the lgbt community: I believe meaningful, loving relationships are not only possible outside of traditional structures, but for me, that is the only way they are possible. I have known since puberty that my sexual desire was not limited to one category of person, and that my standing with someone I love has more to do with honesty and respect than some sort of arbitrary sexual allegiance. I am, to borrow an old phrase, an ethical slut. I do not lie, I do not cheat or otherwise break agreements with the people I am involved with, but I am polyamorous to the core. In the history of my relationships, I have found that every time I have tried to be "normal," and to allow another person and/or a cultural default to set the boundaries of my relationships, I have been at greater risk of misery, abuse, and death at the hands of a partner. My experience has been that I cannot successfully "fall in love" in the sense of two people becoming one anothers' worlds, meeting all of the other's emotional needs, and sexually sequestering themselves.
I am capable of great love, but I never see myself represented in the men and women on screen. Traditional relationships and marriage represent, for me, emotional and social annihilation.
So there's that. Given the choice between watching people fall in love so they can do the hetero monogamy thing, I will choose a good face-kicking or a slow supernatural standoff in space every time. I have a lot better odds at identifying with people who just want to live to the end of the day than with people who want to grow old with someone.