Mr. Darcy’s Proposal

As you may all know, I am somewhat obsessed with Pride and Prejudice. It is my favorite book.

Okay, that’s not really true. It’s more… this is the book by which I measure my own work. It has so much wit, and character! It has nuance and layers, and it’s timelessly fun. So light and easy to read, even two hundred years after it was first written. Jane Austen was one of the greatest novelists to ever contribute to English literature.

Longswords and James Bond

Let’s have another movie swordfight breakdown! One of my faves is from, I kid you not, the Bond movie Die Another Day. Really! Swordfights show up in odd places sometimes. Now, all things considered, Die Another Day was a pretty terrible movie in most other respects – all flashy action shenanigans – but hey, it was a good waste of a few hours and the set pieces were fun to watch. Plus, no one ever said that a Bond movie had to be high thinking entertainment!

I’ll always think fondly of it because of the duel between Pierce Brosnan as James Bond, and Toby Stephens as Gustav Graves.

mako mori

Write Like a Girl

Everyone’s talking about the Strong Female Character(TM).

The actual pushback isn’t a mystery, you know? Lots of women said the same thing long before it was even A Thing – that maybe, just maybe, the way anyone with a uterus tended to be written as a sex-dispensing object/convenient plot device was problematic. And there were articles a-plenty on How To Write Strong Female Characters who were maybe something more than that.

Now people are wondering if we’ve traded one rotten stereotype for another. In asking for Strong Female Characters, the Powers that Be have decided to be literal about their response, and we’ve been given the equivalent of Bruce Willis, Action Hero with a vagina, boobs, and a sexy body. We have the Strong Female Character(TM) or SFC, who isn’t so much a character as a different type of sex-dispensing object/convenient plot device.

Rift swords

Take Sword, Add Protrusions

There must be some kind of law about fantasy swords in video games. There’s a recipe to them, if you know what I mean. It’s not enough for a sword to be a long piece of sharp metal. It’s got to have… extra stuff, extra colors, extra everything! Presumably this is because normal swords are boring, or something.

I can’t quite fathom why various different blades designed purely to kill people real good might be considered boring, but there you have it.

Lightsaber duel

The Problem With Lightsabers

So… I’d like to talk about lightsabers.

First of all – look, they’re basically magical sword-like objects wielded by space-mages. They have only one real purpose in the Star Wars canon, and that’s to be a marker of otherworld-ness associated with Force-users. They look cool. If you’re happy to accept them as just being this cool Star Wars thing, then more power to you. Enjoy them! But don’t read the rest of this post because it will probably make you sad or angry at me.