On Re-watching

There are a lot of people in the world who watch (and read) something once and then move on. To me, that’s never really been an option when it comes to the greats. The great books, movies, and more recently, web series. While I do try to read new books, you can’t ever really tear me away from my favorites. I’ve read the Harry Potter series over and over. I’ve watched Love Actually at least twenty times since it came out. I have every word to The Emperor’s New Groove memorized. And you can’t tell me it’s not a good idea.

There’s a reason we come back to the same books and movies and media over and over again. Something within it resonates. I recently re-watched all of the Lizzie Bennet Diaries (a 2012 web series based on Pride and Prejudice, which happens to be one of my most favorite books). I also own two separate adaptations of Pride and Prejudice (the BBC 1995 series and the 2005 version with Keira Knightley). I love them all in their own ways. The Lizzie Bennet Diaries (LBD) is a modern retelling using vlogs and other social media to tie it together (tumblr, twitter, etc). Because of the nature of media these days, the modernness of it works wonderfully, and the writers even did an amazing job bringing depth to characters forgotten in the original work (they made me love Lydia. I never thought that was possible). Pride and Prejudice is a book that has stood the test of time because, although it’s meant for 1800s Britain, the storyline and the characters can be related to by everyone at any time.

It’s easy to come back to something you love, and it’s easy to figure out why. When you’re writing, it’s important to remember those things. You want your story to resonate with readers in the same way, to stand the test of time, if you will. For now, I’ll leave you with the Lizzie Bennet Diaries – don’t worry, there are only 100 episodes 😉 plus Lydia’s 30.


An Open Letter to Sony

Dear Sony,

You’ve had it pretty bad the past couple of months, what with that hacking that exposed your practices as insulting and rude to many actors. Not to mention the travesty of racism and ill-humor that was The Interview. You’ve got a lot of ground to make up, though perhaps some people don’t care about your practices as long as they’re entertained. I’m not one of those people. Yesterday, it was announced that you would be making a “all-guy” version of Ghostbusters, as a companion piece to the female-led film that has already been announced.

Wait, isn’t there already an all-male version of Ghostbusters? Yes! The original, made in 1984, over 30 years ago. While the original has its own flaws in ignoring women, it can, potentially, be forgiven as having an outdated view of equality. But this is 2015. The age of the internet has created a generation of people who have access to all sorts of information, and therefore, a broader view of the world, including equality. What is equality? It’s women not being treated like objects, as motivation for a man. So why couldn’t you give us this one thing? One movie with three female leads that aren’t fighting over a man? Why did you have to swoop in and undercut any goodwill that might have come your way?

Were there men beating down your door and crying about inequality because, God forbid, something not be about them? Is it an “experiment” that will prove (I’m guessing because people as a herd are not that intelligent) that male-led comedies perform better? A direct comparison. Well, good for you. You took a good thing and made it a competition. No one ever wins in competitions like these.

I am supremely disappointed that you didn’t even bother to give it a chance. Instead, you swooped in, whether out of greed or out of fear of man-tears, and tore it apart. To me, you proved that you don’t care about women. You’ve said that you don’t believe a female-led comedy can survive, despite the fact that the top original screenplays in the past few years (we’re not counting sequels or ‘based on’ movies) have been female-led comedies. Stop undervaluing your female audience. Women go to see movies. They only see so many male-led movies because that’s all there is to see. You can’t say that women don’t see movies with women if there are none.

Women make up 50% of the population; they’re the primary spenders in the household; they take care of families and hold down full-time jobs and still get judged on whatever choices they make.

It may be 2015, but it feels like 1920. Am I still allowed to wear pants? Can I work outside the home? Or will that upset someone? People are always going to be upset, but learning your own values makes you resilient. I’m not afraid to say what I think about your actions, that I find it insulting and demeaning that you have no faith. Let us have one thing. Your company will not fall. In fact, you may even gain new viewers.

I will NOT be going to see the male version of Ghostbusters. I see no redeeming factors in its creation, and you, Sony, have fallen further than I thought you could after The Interview and the hacking revelations. If I was religious, I might pray for you, but I’m not, so I won’t.