Six Abusive Relationships That NOBODY Talks About

One Half of Manic and Malice

abusivemen******Before I proceed, be aware that this entry discusses many instances and examples of domestic violence, sexual assault, pedophilia, and racist descriptions of women of color. Writing this was mentally and emotionally draining and I do not know what your reaction will be to these examples. Please proceed with caution and care.

As I mentioned in my previous blog entry, the red flags and abusive patterns were so overpowering and central to the love story of the Twilight Saga that it actually astonished me. It was such a relief that while the media remained silent on these issues, social media did not. This was especially the case on Livejournal and Deviantart where so many people came forward and voiced their outrage over the portrayal of Bella and Edward’s relationship.

I should have been happy about this, but over time I’ve made a very troubling observation, which resurfaced with the release…

View original post 4,600 more words

Advertisements

8 thoughts on “Six Abusive Relationships That NOBODY Talks About

  1. Great article. Thanks for sharing. I left a comment at the source.

    I stayed away from anything Twilight because of 1. Kristen Stewart, 2. Rob P’s acting, 3. How terrible I thought the whole thing was. I saw the first one because a friend of mine wanted to see it and fell asleep in the movie theater. I heard a LOT of criticism about the Bella/whateverRob’scharacterwasnamed relationship, but I never knew about Sam/Emily.
    My goodness, that setup where he disfigures her, she protects him and the whole community pities HIM is just repulsive.

    I also had a big problem with the depiction of Japanese women in Memoirs of a Geisha and the whole movie left a very bad taste in my mouth. Knowing it was written by a White man makes it so much worse.

    I boycotted any Pocahontas related movie, convinced it was going to be another racist, misogynistic, White savior story. I’m not surprised it turned out to be exactly that but learning about the real story of what really happened to that woman makes me sad and angry.

    I thought Dracula and Mina were another good choice. I haven’t watched this movie in years and all I remember now is breathtaking cinematography, a great performance by the lead actors and how gross I thought the monster was for the way he treated Mina. I remember dropping True Blood and Vampire Diaries exactly because I was disgusted with the way the MenBeasts treated the female “love interests”. I consider them rape victims but the shows insist they’re love interests so…

    That nightmare inducing book excerpt reminded me why I decided never to watch a second of Games of Throne * shivers * It’s one of those very popular shows that’s always made me deeply uncomfortable because everything I ever heard about it sounded cruel and inhumane toward women.

    I didn’t used to mind terrible depictions of relationship AS MUCH when I was younger (my brain was still forming lol) and I remember being addicted to “Withering Heights, and I do mean ADDICTED. Now I watch the movie like

    and while the theme of soulmates and obsessive love (unhealthy as the latter is) will always be compelling to me in literary form, I now realize how messed up the whole thing was and how much my addiction had to do with my massive crush on Ralph Fiennes, my undying love for Juliette Binoche, how gorgeous the locations were and how utterly divine the film score was.

    Interestingly enough, I don’t tend to be as bothered by CERTAIN unhealthy dynamics in m/m fiction. Of course I’m not ever here for people being killed, pillaged, tortured, battered and so forth, but my tolerance for problematic BS is much higher. I am not super evolved when it comes to men and I’ll be the first to admit it.

    Like

    1. I was never a Twilight fan. I always thought that relationship was creepy and kind of dumb from day one. I had no idea about that Sam /Emily thing. I also know something about the history and philosophies of Mormonism, regarding PoC, and I knew nothing good could come of a Mormon writing about vampires, romance or indigenous tribal peoples, and so managed to avoid it all. I do not doubt though that if I’d been under twenty when it all aired, I would’ve liked it though.

      I loved Dracula. For the cinematography. The acting and accents all need help. Some of the dialogue is iffy. I was not invested much in the romance. I haven’t watched this in a long time but I was very young when I saw it and less likely to question what I was seeing. I just ignored the parts that made me uncomfortable or didn’t make sense.

      Pocahontas live action movie is a bit more nuanced I think. Yes, what John does is still horribly wrong, she is still a child in the movie, but the story is a little more nuanced. What they have is shown as romantic but not a romance, and what John does to her is never presented as a good thing.Their relationship is never presented as an ideal. She marries another man and has a child. Eventually before the end of the film, she washes her hands of him as a waste of her life and time, and goes on to be with her husband and child. Her second husband is presented as someone who actually loves her, and CHOOSES to be with him when he asks her to marry.

      I was going to write a post about the M/M toxic relationships we keep seeing in fandom and shows, like in Oz, and Hannibal, where the two partners clearly hate each other, and often try to kill each other and how that is NEVER presented to the viewers as a nontoxic relationship.

      Like

      1. “I was going to write a post about the M/M toxic relationships we keep seeing in fandom and shows, like in Oz, and Hannibal, where the two partners clearly hate each other, and often try to kill each other and how that is NEVER presented to the viewers as a nontoxic relationship.”

        I never watched Hannibal (I’m very squeamish about long pig and the lead guy creeps me out to the 10th power) but I did watch Oz. I’m surprised a single relationship from that show is considered nontoxic. I remember all of them as rapes, even the Beecher/otherguy pairing so many people seem to find cute.

        It’s been years since I’ve seen Oz but I never got the sense that the show condoned the relationship, just kind if presented it in all its horror, like every other horrible thing that was constantly going on in that fiery pit of Hell. Looking forward to that article.

        I do know that fandom as well as the producers is glamorizing the heck out of the Hannibal m/m ship though. Which I don’t understand because didn’t creepy guy torture, eat and kill the other guy? That’s some Luca Magnotta mess. Yikes! The tolerance for these terrible relationships could be indicative of the desperation for gay romance representation on TV because the way folks were going on about soulmates and canon!!! for that killer and his meal, I mean prey. Let me stop and find a bucket.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. This is all true but my bigger point was the creators never tried to say these were ideal relationships or that the relationships were okay, although Hannibal is glamorized. These relationships are presented as one true pairings, but not good pairings. It’s the fans of the shows who take these relationships and flip the script to try to make them ideal by mainstreaming the problematic member of the couple.

        This ties in with an earlier post I reblogged about the glamorization of villains in genre media and how White villains are empathized and sympathized with but PoC villains are never presented as sympathetic characters.

        when mainstream media breaks with tradition and presents truly non sympathetic villains , or well rounded PoC, as a heroes, the fandom will reproduce the old trope, not being used to the new thing, and in some cases actively rejecting the new difference, like how the fandom treats Finn, for example. Their imagination is made up of tropes and stereotypes and when they use that, they only reproduce what they’ve seen because they’ve never questioned the stories they’ve been told.

        These fans all think they’re being progressive/regressive but all they’re doing is reproducing the same stereotypical dynamics that Hollywood has presented for decades, they’re really not being as subversive as they like to think they are. They’re just reproducing all the same interracial, romantic and social situations that Hollywood has been giving them for sixty, seventy years.

        All of the worst tropes of fanfiction that most get on our nerves is usually related to something Hollywood movies have done.For example, the sympathetic white villain is a staple of Hollywood films. It get reproduced in fanfiction as woobification of the villain.

        This is the kind of fanfiction you get from people who don’t question what they consume or only do so on a surface level. Since Hollywood movies are racist and anti-black, that too gets reproduced as erasure and minimalization of poc in fanfiction.

        Nothing happens in a vacuum and using mainstream media as a jumping off point only seems to result in reproducing the exact same problems we hate when Hollywood does it. I was trying to tie the whole woobification in with the idea that its perpetrators have limited sexual experience and this was their way of giving themselves permission to find problematic characters sexy.

        But it’s just my theory.

        Liked by 1 person

      3. “These fans all think they’re being progressive/regressive but all they’re doing is reproducing the same stereotypical dynamics that Hollywood has presented for decades, they’re really not being as subversive as they like to think they are. They’re just reproducing all the same interracial, romantic and social situations that Hollywood has been giving them for sixty, seventy years.”

        I get it now and I agree. My belief is SOME of those fans believe they’re being progressive because they’re putting 2 males in a relationship (even when everything else in their story complies with the racist and heteronormative rules of Hollywood). My contention has always been that some fans are fully aware that they’re not progressive because they don’t see m/m pairing as this revolutionary act or political statement, just something they play with.

        “All of the worst tropes of fanfiction that most get on our nerves is usually related to something Hollywood movies have done.For example, the sympathetic white villain is a staple of Hollywood films. It get reproduced in fanfiction as woobification of the villain. This is the kind of fanfiction you get from people who don’t question what they consume or only do so on a surface level. Since Hollywood movies are racist and anti-black, that too gets reproduced as erasure and minimalization of poc in fanfiction.”

        Love the parallels and I now understand the link you’re making between the Hollywood status quo and the way it’s being replicated in the fanfiction world.

        “Nothing happens in a vacuum and using mainstream media as a jumping off point only seems to result in reproducing the exact same problems we hate when Hollywood does it. I was trying to tie the whole woobification in with the idea that its perpetrators have limited sexual experience and this was their way of giving themselves permission to find problematic characters sexy.

        But it’s just my theory.”

        I agree with the theory. I just think it only applies to a certain segment of fans. I’m a lot more cynical and based on my experience, I know countless sexually experienced fans who woobify characters and reproduce certain Hollywood norms, fully aware of what they’re doing. I’ve noticed a lot of fandom conversation focus on the young, impressionable fans, probably because they’re the ones who make the most noise on social media, and insist they’re being progressive, completely oblivious to the fact that they really aren’t. I’ve come to the conclusion that it’s because they’re the ones you can have some sort of dialogue with, the ones you can challenge and possibly educate.

        Maybe the other fans don’t get called out as much BECAUSE they’re grown, fully cognizant of the fact they’re fetishizing m/m relationships, and making no apologies for it, a fact that makes them lost causes…

        That said, I still agree with your theory.

        Liked by 1 person

      4. Okay. I’m not not sure it’s a sound theory but I thought it worth looking at. You’re right though a lot of the younger fanfiction writers are just louder about what they’re doing.

        I don’t actually have a problem with older writers who know exactly what they’re doing. I mean I love a good darkcore relationship story. I was a Wincest shipper from day one, even though I think real life relationships like that are kinda squicky. On the other hand I do only read stories where the writer isn’t even trying to say it’s an okay thing.
        For some reason I was really only picturing the older Twilight readers. That was a few years ago and most of them are now at an age where they’re just getting their writing chops. But if, like you said, there were young people who were highly critical of Twilight at the time then I’m not sure how my theory fits, since it’s only a certain subset of fanfiction writers.

        Liked by 1 person

      5. “But if, like you said, there were young people who were highly critical of Twilight at the time then I’m not sure how my theory fits, since it’s only a certain subset of fanfiction writers.”

        I think the theory fits! That particular subset of fandom 🙂
        I don’t believe there can be ONE theory of fandom because fandom isn’t a monolith.

        What I notice, is that one theory that applies to some of the most vocal members of fandom is often used to explain fandom behavior at large. That was also the point of my comment to Zina’s article about Slash Shipping. It doesn’t make her theory, yours or mine theory invalid. It just means different theories will be valid for different subgroups 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

    2. And as for Game of Theones. I don’t and have no intention of ever reading the books. I occasionally watch an episode that I heard was good, like Hardhome or The Door, but I don’t make it regular viewing. For what it’s worth I call it The Rape Show. There’s just far too much of it. And for the record I hate the slack jawed looking daenerys, miss queens of dragons. I just hate her, and her ttreatment. Everything about that character is horribly wrong.

      Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s