Tropes vs Women

Here’s a video. Watch it. I have commentary about it below.

Yes, I know what a damsel in distress is.

Yes, I know that many old games used this trope.

Yes, I know that Nintendo keeps using it to this day.

Your only modern examples come from Nintendo? The king of lazy and non-existent storytelling? No, remakes don’t count.

Those last 3 minutes seem to be the only worthy thing being said in the whole damn video.

Aaaaand the talk about modern games using this trope will go in the second episode.


That’s it? That was all you had to say about this trope in 23 minutes? You are not gonna even entertain the thought that different cultures have a different relationship with it? I mean, I can’t say much about that because I haven’t investigated it, but I’m not the one that got 150k to do so. Here’s a hint: Look up “japan” in google, see what you find.

I’m really, really disappointed by this documentary. After seeing the enormous amount of money it got, the great level of attention it attracted and the unbelievably huge clusterfuck that a community of imbeciles caused* … I was expecting SOMETHING to be said other than “here’s this trope, here are a few examples, this is bad, we shouldn’t do this”.

Look, I don’t have much to say about this trope; I haven’t read much on the subject but here’s the first thing that came to my mind:

Maybe, just maybe, this trope has more to do with lazy storytelling than with any gender issues. What’s our demographic? Males. Do they care about the story? Not really. Done! Use whatever tropes that you think appeal to boys.

It’s a crutch, it’s a trope that everybody is familiar with and so anyone could come up with a story like this. There are so many old games that use this trope precisely because the ones doing the story were the programmers and not professional writers. The problem arises when an otherwise intelligent story uses the damsel in distress trope without having anything to say about it, without doing anything with it, without exploring the ramifications or even just subverting it at the last moment as a wink to the audience. That’s a problem.


*You can read about it in this Tropes vs Women Kickstarter update and then this other one.


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