I don’t watch that many shows anymore. (By that many, I mean I watched less than ten in first run this year, somehow.) So I’m not going to take you through a play-by-play of the No Trope Bingo cards. I just did a tentative drawing-up of which boxes I saw get marked and here are the ones I’ve seen the most (featured in some way or another in 5+ shows.)
Lack of queer people: I’m trying to think of openly queer characters and all I’m coming up with is sweet puppy Joey (Juan Pablo Raba) on SHIELD and Dorian (Reeve Carney) and Angelique (Jonny Beauchamp) on Penny Dreadful.
Compulsive heteroeroticism: SHIELD WHY. Rest of the shows I watched, also why, but mostly this is a time to yell at SHIELD.
Narrative double standard: a good way to look at this is what constitutes a happy ending for characters. I’m looking at you, Mad Men, where women seemed to have to choose between romantic happiness and professional happiness, if they got happiness at all, but dumb boys got to have it all. But this is true in many places.
Women as plot devices: Betty Draper (January Jones). Raylan’s infant daughter on Justified. Kara Lynn Palamas (Maya Stojan). The Game of Thrones rage-inducing baby trio of Sansa (Sophie Turner), Shireen (Kerry Ingram), and Myrcella (Nell Tiger Free). Etcetera.
Uneven f::m ratio: sadly, the only new thing I watched this year with more women than men was Carmilla and that’s a webseries. Virtually nothing had equally gender-split casts, though The Librarians‘ 2::3 main cast ratio is pretty good.
Looks like we’ve got more work to do, television.
–your fangirl heroine.