I’ve seen a couple of new TV series recently that had one thing in common; they both had strong female leads, but both women’s characteristics seemed to be rather more male orientated than female.
The Bay featured an intrepid female detective, who was also a single mother of two teenagers. Her underling was a man who seemed to be given all the jobs which would usually have been assigned to female police officers (i.e family liaison officer or sitting with distressed relatives etc.). This lady detective had risky sex at the back of a pub with somebody she had met only minutes before – and appeared driven to solve the case at the expense of her own family problems.
Would a single mother put her job above her children? I don’t know of any that would. Would this same seemingly intelligent single mother put herself at risk by having unprotected sex with someone she had met only minutes before? Hmm…
The second series, The Widow, featured a woman trying to find out why her husband had apparently died. There she is like some modern-day Emma Peel, fighting and shooting men twice her size, while a cliffhanger ending of one episode shows her husband being held prisoner in a small wooden crate. I actually gave up on this series, but watched The Bay through to the end.
In my opinion there appears to have been a total shift around regarding programmes where the hunky he-man type rescues the defenceless female in distress. Nowadays the female leads can take on the world, including men twice their size and strength. Nobody will ever confine them to a small wooden box. These women are frightening in their muscle-power, resolve, and stamina.
My book ‘A House Without Windows’ focuses on how a woman escapes from her ten year hell of being held captive in a basement, and of the aftermath. It was considered for filming in 2017 by a New York media production company, who at the last minute decided that violence against women was now not very PC…
But hey, is this true for real life? Usually it is women who are victims of assault, rape, and domestic violence etc. There are not many hunky females taking on the world and shooting-’em-up in Annie Oakley style that I know of. Who are mostly Managing Directors of large companies? Who make the majority of boardroom decisions? Yes, it’s men. Who struggle to break through those same company glass ceilings? Who takes time off work to look after sick children? Yes, it’s usually women because their male partners get paid more.
In the make-believe world of film, women are taking over the reins from men, but in real life I think they might have to wait a bit longer.