Growing up as a kid, I didn’t have that many female role models to look up to in the media. Growing up, all I ever had was Disney Princesses. Now don’t get me wrong, I love Disney movies and it’s basically tradition in my house to have Disney themed movie nights. But I grew out of my ‘Princess phase’ pretty quickly after thinking it was too girly for me and entered my ‘tomboy phase’. And so, my nerdy life was born.
The majority of my later childhood was spent watching Doctor Who on a Saturday night, dreaming of going on adventures in space. My friends also joined me in watching this and more often than not we would play Doctor Who on the playground during break time at school. Yet whenever we played it, I would always have to be a ‘companion’ as the Doctor was always portrayed by a male, and my friends seemed to want to stick to that. Whenever I saw people going to different conventions or dressing up for Halloween, I saw women either dressing as the female companions or genderbent versions of the Doctor.
Yet as most people will know, the thirteenth incarnation of the Doctor is now being portrayed by a woman! At first I was a little apprehensive because, in my opinion the storylines in Doctor Who had declined and I didn’t want the new Doctor to be treated in the same way. I needn’t have been apprehensive though, as we are now 2 episodes into the newest series and I am absolutely loving it! Jodie Whittaker brings so much to role and has made a truly unique Doctor, whilst still respecting the past versions. And I think it says something when her first episode reached 8.2 million viewers, which is the largest ratings that the show has had since it restarted in 2005! I just love everything to do with it; the Doctor, her outfit, the Tardis, the new Intro and music. All of it. Honestly, if younger me was to see this new Doctor, I think she would just be so inspired.
Then you’ve got superhero movies. When they all first started, we had Batman, Superman, and The Marvel Cinematic Universe, in all of which the only female superheroes were Black Widow and Gamora. Yet in the past few years, we have had a real booming rise in the number of female superheroes. Only last year we had our first superhero movie based around a woman, directed by a woman, and had a female lead. Yep, I’m talking about Wonder Woman.
But that’s not all! This year Ant Man at the Wasp was released, which is the first Marvel movie to feature a female in its title. Lest we forget Black Panther too, which features Nakia, The Dora Milaje (an all-female military group) and Shuri, who is now canonically the smartest person in the Marvel Cinematic Universe! Not forgetting the movies that are yet to be released. Next year, Marvel is releasing Captain Marvel; the first Marvel movie to be led by a female hero, and in 2020 a Black Widow movie is also set to be released! We have also had some pretty badass Marvel villains recently, what with Hela in Thor Ragnarok hell-bent on dominating the universe, and Ava Starr in Ant Man and the Wasp who is trying to cure herself of her unstable atomic state.
In 2018 we also had an all-female reboot of the popular science-fiction movie Ghostbusters. Though this movie was not as popular as those mentioned before, and did not do as well, it still served a purpose. The effect that this movie, and others, have had on girls of all ages is astonishing. More girls are wanting to go into Science, Engineering and other subjects/careers that were previously seen as male dominated. Young girls are dressing up as these badass heroes and space travelling adventurers and not having to explain who they are, as the characters are becoming more and more recognised.
What I guess I’m trying to say is that it is so important for the next generation of girls to see these iconic figures that they can view as role models. It shows them, as well as all of us, that women can be independent and badass people, not just people to be saved or kept in the background or sidelines!
That’s all for this week guys, if you enjoyed it please feel free to let me know in the comments below.
Until next time,
An Anxious Gal