Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Scary Royalty

There has been a lot of talk this year about equality in Hollywood.  Female actors, directors, and writers make less than their male peers. Not that gender inequality only resides in Hollywood, I know I make less than male coworkers in the print industry and have for years. In short, it sucks. 

But, on a lighter note, being female can be pretty awesome too (pun intended). As a feminist myself, I like to see strong female characters in movies. Which brings me to this years halloween drawing series. I knew while drawing the Vincent Price series last year that I wanted to do Scream Queens this year. After all, without scream queens in Hollywood, the horror genre would be horribly boring.  Some of these queens are helpless victims. Some are (Surprise!) the killer. While others are just plain bad ass.

Eliza Dushku, Wrong Turn
Take Eliza Dushku for instance. She worked with and against Sarah Michelle Gellar in Buffy AND survived three backwoods inbred killers in Wrong Turn. Tough doesn't even begin to explain the complexities of what it takes to slay vampires and inbreeders and still look good doing it. 

Lin Shaye, Insidious Chapter 3
I was a bit surprised earlier this year when I realized that Insidious Chapter 3 is my favorite of that particular movie series. The backstory of Lin Shaye's character has finally come to light. Turns out she is strong in spite a painful loss and the fear that possesses her.  This new revelation makes her powerful force against the evils of the world.

Barbara Steele, Black Sunday
The old black and white horror movies are my favorite. Barbara Steele was a mainstay in those movies. She held her own against the likes of Vincent Price on the big screen and she deserves as much credit as the Vincent's and the Bela Lugosi's of the horror genre.

Mia Farrow, Rosemary's Baby
Rosemary's Baby would never have been the same without Mia Farrow. She was feminine, vulnerable, and rightfully paranoid. She has had a long standing acting career and even played the evil nanny Mrs. Baylock in The Omen remake in 2006.

Shelly Duvall, The Shining
While I admit that The Shining remains on of my favorite horror films, one of the things I can't stomach about it is the treatment of Shelly Duvall's character. The screenwriters turned her into a weak, hysterical, nonsensical girl. Stephen King didn't write her character that way so I'm not sure why it was necessary to do so in the film. It offends all of my feminist sensibilities.

So, as I am halfway through this years Drawtoberfest series, I have hope that Hollywood can change. I have hope that, one day, I don't have to work twice as hard to get equal salary at work. I have hope that, one day, better roles for women will populate the big screen, because it would be a waste to not have good roles for Jessica Chastain.  Just saying.

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