tardis_stowaway: TARDIS under a starry sky and dark tree (romana II)
I read a fascinating blog post by nightsky ([livejournal.com profile] ellipticcurve  on LJ) about the costuming trend for femme!Doctors and what it might mean.  I was a big fan of the femme!Doctor costumes I saw at the last few cons I went to, especially this latest Gallifrey, but couldn't really articulate why I loved them aside from the beauty of many of the costumes, the playfulness, and perhaps the chance for women to play the Doctor without having to disguise themselves as men.  Nightsky explores how the femme costumes play with concepts, looks at some history, and concludes with some great points about how femme costumes can be a way for women to assert our belonging in geekdom without sacrificing femininity to act like one of the boys.  Plus, there are nifty costume pictures!

Prior to me seeing this blog post but strangely related, my father and I got into a discussion of women we think would be good in the role of the Doctor.  After mentioning Emma Thompson, his initial top choice was Holly Hunter (with the point that if the Doctor was switching genders, a Georgia accent was not that big a stretch).  I really haven't seen Hunter in enough stuff to comment on that casting choice.  My list of fantasy casting for a female Doctor, without regard for the likelihood that said actresses would actually be willing to take the role, is as follows:

4. Kate Winslet:  Because she is just generally awesome and should be in everything.  She's got great presence and acting range. I bet she could do a great Oncoming Storm mode.

3.  Sigourney Weaver:  This is a bit off the wall, since she is (a) American, and (b) mostly known for blow-'em-up action movies, but I think it would actually be amazing. She can do the serious acting in addition to the blowing up of aliens.  Galaxy Quest shows that she can also do comedy.  Also, I think it would be great stereotype-busting to have the first female Doctor be tough as nails.  She's older than any of the previous actors were when they took the role (yes, even Hartnell), but she's fit and gorgeous for her age. (Realistically, I'd want a British actress as the Doctor, but I still kinda like this idea.)

2.  Catherine Tate:  This was a rumor prior to the casting of Matt Smith, though probably a rumor based utterly on fannish wishful thinking.  Sure, it would need some crazy sci-fi explanations for why the Doctor regenerated to look like Donna, but it would be brilliant enough to be worth it.   DoctorDonna FTW!   Raise your hand if you can come up with a reason why the Doctor could end up looking like Donna (or Donna could end up AS the Doctor) that makes as much sense as some of the stuff the show gives us.  I bet everyone has her/his hand up now.  Also, ginger!

And my number 1 choice for a woman Doctor is...

Helena Bonham Carter.  She has a wonderful, very Doctor-ish quirky energy.  She's hilarious but also capable of the serious acting when need be.  A little bit of madness is definitely an asset in the role.  She's old enough for gravitas but still gorgeous and charismatic.  Her idiosyncratic goth/bohemian style could translate into a really cool Doctor costume.  After hearing this list, my dad shifted Helena Bonham Carter to the top of his. 

What about you, flist?  What women would you cast as the Doctor? Assume no budget constraints.

Also on the subject of Teh Wimmins, flickr user caseface123 posted a neat photography project where she asked people of various ages and genders to make a sign about what feminism means to them and then shot their photographs with the signs.  Some are positive, some are negative, all are fascinating for what they say about people.  My favorite is below the cut:
photo under here )
tardis_stowaway: TARDIS under a starry sky and dark tree (companions)
Here's a meme from [livejournal.com profile] isiscaughey  that makes me happy:

Comment with the name of a (or some) female character(s) and I'll tell you why I love her (them). In return, you can do the same in your journal (if you so desire).

tardis_stowaway: TARDIS under a starry sky and dark tree (reading outside)
-I found a cool discussion thread over at Feministe for recommendations of feminist sf/fantasy/speculative fiction books. There are a lot of authors and stories I love recced over there, and a bunch more I now want to check out. This is going in my bookmarks!

-We actually had frost last night! On the central California coast!

-Go away, sore throat. :(
tardis_stowaway: TARDIS under a starry sky and dark tree (I can kill you with my brain)
-A federal judge found that a hospital was within its rights to allow a woman to die without her family at her side because the family in question was the woman's female partner and their adopted children.   The surviving woman wasn't even kept properly updated on her partner's condition.  How do people working at a hospital have so little sense of compassion?  This is why marriage equality matters; legal documents like power of attorney lack the simplicity and force of a marriage license. 

-Thirty senators apparently don't give a damn about rape victims.  They voted against a bill to prohibit the Pentagon from doing business with contractors that forbid their employees to sue over cases of rape.  This new law was aimed at Halliburton and its subsidiaries, and it was necessitated by numerous serious complaints.   The bill passed, thank goodness, but it utterly appalls me that nearly a third of the Senate, including John McCain apparently feel that gang rape (and suppression of the evidence thereof) is just a minor problem that can be solved in arbitration without any possible recourse to courts.  In this Guardian article about the bill, it says that reasons from the senators who voted against the bill include "claims that the government had no business interfering in a private contract between a company and its workers." NO.  These are government contractors; the government has every right to say that they won't do business with these companies if they don't keep to appropriate ethical standards, such as doing everything possible to prevent rape, prosecuting rapists, and not boiling kittens alive.  The government would certainly care if they were doing something like employing undocumented immigrants.

EPIC  FAIL, America.  
tardis_stowaway: TARDIS under a starry sky and dark tree (vampire books)
I just read an article about females in fandom that brings up some interesting points but also frustrated me.  Media powers are now realizing that women are sometimes interested in geeky things too!  Wow, girl geeks!  Who could have guessed?  *eye roll* 

Some people in the article talk intelligently about things that we in fandom generally already realize:  men and women are sometimes fans of the same things but not for identical reasons, with women typically being more interested in emotional connections with the characters.  As a generalization, this is true, although there is a LOT of variation within both sexes.  I like a tightly written plot and a thrilling action sequence too, I just won't get really into a story unless I care about the characters.

What frustrated me about this article was its focus on Twilight as some epicenter of female fandom, with some idea of males being universally anti-Twilight and females all being screaming fangirls about it.  Women in fandom existed (more commonly than many acknowledged) long before Twilight, and many of us couldn't give a damn about teenage stalker sparkly vampires and the disempowered Mary Sues who love them. 

Also, how can you write an article on female fans (actually, three articles, although the first two really don't add much to the one I linked) and not once mention fan fiction?  They are ignoring a big part of how a lot of women and girls relate to the books, tv shows, movies, etc. that they love.  Instead, the article is focusing on the screaming teens who follow hot actors around at conventions.  Fic's a way that fans are creative, really engaging mentally and emotionally with the original works.

I did like the quote from Kevin Smith in response to his audience's booing of Twilight:  "That's the next generation of fans!  That's what I love about a comic book convention. People will come to a convention, stand there in a Spock costume, look at someone in a Chewie costume, and say, 'Look at that f__in' geek. How dare you pass judgment on those 12-year-old girls who like vampires!"

Oh, interfandom judgment.  Really, as much as I will criticize Twilight and its less sane and/or mature fans, I hope the books' success can ultimately be a good thing.  Some of those girls will go on to a better quality of sparkle-free vampire fiction (Buffy, Robin McKinley's Sunshine, Tanya Huff's Henry Fitzroy books), and from there to the rest of fandom.  At my local borders, they have moved the Young Adult section to the front of the store.  I hope that's an indicator that a lot of younger readers are buying books.  Admittedly about half of it is Twilight and its ripoffs, but surely some of the girls who go there will get into a habit of reading fantasy and sci-fi.  (Incidentally, a RL friend of mine who works in publishing keeps a blog reviewing YA books from an adult perspective, focusing on quality works. Her reviews are excellent reads in themselves.  There are tons of really good books for teens to move to when they start to tire of Twilight.)

Finally, I have a random question.  I know male fans are out there since I see them at conventions.  However, the aspects of fandom I participate in (fic, LJ) are very heavily female.  What do the male fans DO when they aren't at cons?

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