So, I finally got around to seeing GoTG last night. I’m not normally a fan of Marvel films, but this one looked like a delicious frivolous cinema adventure, and those are always nice to have once in a while.
Now…over all, I feel about this movie the same way I do about Avengers. “Eh.”
Actually, that’s a lie. This movie had more good things than Avengers.
Peter Quill/Star-Lord was probably one of the most natural Marvel characters I’ve ever seen. He wasn’t some charismatic Cassanova full of witty one-liners. He wasn’t some lovable goofball who’s more quirk than character. He was actually really well-rounded. He’s no kung-fu master, but he can hold his own in a fight. He’s creative, but not a genius. He dances like he’s having fun, not as though anyone’s watching. He stumbles, makes jokes that fall flat, and isn’t always taken seriously. That was actually really refreshing to watch.
Groot and Rocket were awesome characters. I don’t need to go any more into it, they’re fabulous.
Drax is also pretty awesome - between the actors and the writer, they brought a lot of charisma and charm to a character that was ultimately a brick shithouse.
Marvel, you get a pet on the back for having more than one female character in a film. Good for you. You don’t quite pass the Bechdel test (I’m pretty sure all their conversations together are about Ronin), but you did include two named female “characters”.
Except you didn’t. You had the Sexy Emotionless Assassin archetype, times two. You know, the same archetype Black Widow falls under.
These characters (and I use that word loosely) are so boring. They get no witty lines, no interesting quirks, and they almost never contribute any creative input to any plans or schemes. Sure, they have intel and knowledge, but that is the most they contribute to their party.
And that really sucks. I want a female character who gets drunk and loses her shit. I want a female character who makes a joke. I want a female character who has a back-story apart from “I was trained to be an assassin”.
However, it wasn’t until the end of the movie that I saw two points that *really* bugged me. Don’t worry, they’re not spoilers.
Towards the end of the film, Drax makes comments to the other Guardians that he is willing to acknowledge them as friends. He calls them, “Peter Quill,” “This dumb tree” and “This green whore”…
And at that point, both Gamora and I exploded a little.
Did they seriously just have one protagonist call another protagonist a whore? Even as a joke, that’s really shit. He could have called her a bitch, and that would have probably been more accurate and just as funny. And they make a point that Drax does not understand metaphors. So he isn’t calling her a “whore” ironically, he’s is literally saying, “I believe you are a whore.”
Almost immediately after that little exchange, another character appears and starts calling Gamora “traitor” and “disappointment”, and Drax counters, “No one speaks to my friends like that!”
Yeah…it’s totally okay for you to slut-shame the woman, but no one else can say a bad word against her.
On that note, if you’re going to slut-shame anyone, why not Peter Quinn, the man who introduced himself to Drax by talking about all the women he’d slept with and then abandoned?
Yeah, that line really bothered me.
The second thing that bothered me was, at the very end of the film, the characters have changed into new fresh outfits. What’s Gamora, the super assassin, wearing? A tiny uniform with a short skirt and perky breasts.
…why? Does this woman really look like the kind of woman who, now that she has the choice to wear whatever she wants, would go for a tiny skirt? Did she really say, “I’m sick of all this skin-tight leather, I’m going to go for something that further restricts my movements,”? At the very least, give her a long skirt. Or a short skirt with some leggings underneath it.
*5 minutes of brief research of internet later*
Okay, I did a brief internet search, and apparently, the Gamora of the comics is portrayed as wearing practically nothing, and also possesses one hell of a sexual appetite. So maybe the movie writers were trying to reference her much more revealing outfits with her little uniform.
Even so, as someone who doesn’t keep up with comic lore, the short skirt seemed so unnecessary to me.
And that “green whore” comment still really bugs me. Whether they were trying to make a reference to comic!Gamora’s sexual history or not, I feel that the joke was wholly unnecessary. Any attempts Marvel made to present a well-rounded female character fell flat when they had one character call their only female protagonist a whore. As a joke. Whilst the self-proclaimed man-slut was standing right beside her.
(For more discussion on how Marvel failed Gamora (at least a little bit), here is a very nice discussion written by someone who knows more about the comics than I do.)