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Chauvinistic Stowaways in Cultural Icons – II


The second is the Matrix series, much hailed as landmark and life changing and liberal, most for their extra-ordinary internal consistency and coherence, like the other great creations of fantasy worlds – Tolkein’s Middle Earth, Harry Potter and the like.

But when the stereotypes stick, they’re like Fevicol. Invisible, insidious, and insanely irreducible.

The entire series has Neo be ‘the man’ – for all that Trinity was this great warrior earlier, she just falls flat (literally also) when Neo comes round. Matrix Reloaded has some insane episodes where Morpheous, Neo and Trinity meet people and for all practical purposes Trinity is just there to – to maybe make up the trinity. She doesn’t speak, or speaks foolishly, or just waits to do something dumb and irrational. Ditto with the people they speak to! The leaders of people are all men – including, of course, the obvious Creator – a WASP if there ever was one, with Freudian facial hair that becomes a reverse joke on the scriptwriter. A parody is a parody only when you’ve done it by choice. Otherwise it is just ironical that your brain couldn’t think up anything else. The only semi-strong woman here is the Oracle – but she’s a mother figure and more a consultant than an actual participant.
The Wachowski brother’s gloomy forecast kind of defeats the purpose of all the expensive bras we’ve burnt up over the last forty years. Especially because all the female characters seem to use the biggest push-up varieties modern technology has created.

But then again, maybe we’re just expecting too much of Hollywood.

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