Television Tuesday :: 2014 and the Bechdel test

16 Dec

At least in regards to the shows I watch, which again can be found here.

So as I’ve mentioned before, I kept track of TV seasons that started this year and whether or not they passed the Bechdel test.  I can’t promise I have an exact tally, but this is what I found.

  • In season two (I didn’t count during season one because the season started last year and since I hadn’t started counting then the tally would be inaccurate) Agents of SHIELD has so far passed the Bechdel test every episode.  Sometimes it’s kind of a sketchy pass (i.e. episode nine, “Ye Who Enter Here,” when the conversation between Skye [Chloe Bennet] and Raina [Ruth Negga] did involve Skye’s father but touched on non-Skye’s father subjects for at least thirty seconds) but it’s a pass each time.  Thank the gods for Skye, because a majority of the passes were due to scenes of hers: her and Raina (how thrilled am I about her and Raina in general?  Pretty damn thrilled, honestly), her and May (Ming-Na Wen), her and Jemma (Elizabeth Henstridge).  (Actually, all of those relationships are ones I’m thrilled about.)  Also of note is episode three, “Making Friends and Influencing People,” where the Bechdel test is smashed into tiny pieces with the multitude of interactions between Skye and May and also Jemma and Bobbi (Adrianne Palicki).  Thumbs up, y’all.
  • As SHIELD goes, I will cite a first example of times that women talk about a man but it mattered a lot: that conversation in episode nine between Jemma and Bobbi that was about both of their respective man situations, kind of, because what that did was allowed Bobbi to represent for “Jemma’s side” of the situation, to give her reassurance that she does need, and allowed Jemma to finally get to tell her side of the story.
  • You know it’s a weird world when a show that is titled simply Girls can’t even pass the Bechdel test 100% of the time.  They did rate a respectable 88%, with the one episode that failed being because every conversation was about a man if I recall correctly, but still.  Wow.
  • As I mentioned before, Justified passed 66% of the time, which is still surprisingly often compared to some of the shows on my list.  And this is because Ava (Joelle Carter) went to ladyjail.  Every episode after Ava went to ladyjail passed, because ladyjail is one place where ladies are going to narratively have to speak to one another constantly and therefore some of it will be not just about men.
  • Game of Thrones and True Blood both passed 40% of the time.  As Game of Thrones goes, good job Melisandre (Carice van Houten) who was responsible for half of those passes (once with Shireen [Kerry Ingram], once with Selyse [Tara Fitzgerald]).  And as True Blood goes, well… the what-could-have-been with Jessica (Deborah Ann Woll) and Adilyn (Bailey Noble) is the most important one to me.  The rest I’ve chosen to push out of my mind because they dealt largely with plots that I loathed and represented nothing good that could have been.
  • A lot of the conversations about men in Game of Thrones are, while note test-passing, still revealing of things that may or may not be important narratively and may or may not just make me smile: Margaery (Natalie Dormer) and Brienne (Gwendoline Christie), Margaery and Olenna (Diana Rigg), Margaery and Cersei (Lena Headey).  Also Daenerys (Emilia Clarke) and Missandei (Nathalie Emmanuel).
  • Fargo, Mad Men, and Sons of Anarchy passed two times apiece; Penny Dreadful a sad one.  The new ridiculous TNT show The Librarians has passed 1/3 episodes so far, and I can pray that it picks up with that soon, as I’m praying that it picks up in other ways soon.
  • And as for total Bechdel test failures?  True Detective, From Dusk Till Dawn, Silicon Valley.  2/3 of which I was watching because other people really wanted to and I couldn’t get out of it.

–your fangirl heroine.

fidgeting

Advertisements

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

%d bloggers like this: