commented yesterday that it was odd that someone in rainn
was upset that a past rape was implied
in a recent movie - not shown, but implied. I've said in the past the rape in movies and books bothers me; I'm going to clarify that.
I don't believe in not talking about rape. (See here. THIS LINK MAY BE TRIGGERING.)
It happens. It happens a *lot*. And yes, it should be spoken of. People need to be reminded that this is not something that only happens to people you don't know. Odds are very strong that I'm not the only rape survivor you know, even if I'm the only person you know who talks about it.
It is one of the most heinous things that can be done to another human being. And people need to not forget that.
But, precisely because it *is* so heinous - it needs to be treated responsibly in fiction. And most times, it isn't.
Want to show that your villain is a Bad Guy? Have him rape someone. Have him get away with it, too; name one movie or book where there are actual consequences to rape. Murder, sometimes. Rape, no.
Want to traumatize your female character? Have someone rape her. Male characters get a wide variety of traumas. Car accidents, houses burning down, being shot or stabbed or whatnot. Women? No options for women. Just rape.
The rape of the female character is just plain lazy writing. The author couldn't think of anything with actual logic or depth to do to the character, so he just threw in a rape and called it done.
The villain-as-rapist is also lazy writing... but it's something more dangerous than that.
Fiction affects people. I'm not saying that Natural-Born Killers
makes kids shoot up high schools. I'm not saying that rock music makes your kids Satanists.
But when people repeatedly see in their fiction of choice that everyone gets away with rape....that's going to leave an impression, if only subconsciously. And when they see my least-favorite twist on it - where the victim forgives/falls in love with the rapist (see Donaldson's Thomas Covenant
books, where the "anti-hero" rapes a woman who falls in love with him afterward, and he becomes this Great Hero, with no consequences or remorse) - they get the impression that rape isn't so bad - see how that character recovered? He fucked her like a real man, and she said she didn't want it, but she did, see?
And I just find that irresponsible and reprehensible.
I'm not against rape existing in fiction. It exists in real life, and censoring it from fiction wouldn't be right.
But I would prefer that rape only be shown/spoken of when it is integral to the plot
. When it is a natural progression of the story. And it can be heavily implied and still be handled with delicacy - make it clear what's going to happen, then cut away. We don't need to see every detail in order to know what happened. My example to asim
yesterday was the anime movie Perfect Blue
... which had a ten-minute-long
rape scene. When it started, I covered my eyes. My ex kept watching to tell me when it was over. And it just... kept... going. He ended up fast-forwarding - and it took him several minutes to get past it even on fast-forward. That's later been edited down to just two or three minutes, I think I heard - not watching it again to find out. But it could just as effectively have been accomplished with threat-then-cut-away, you know? Ten minutes just glorifies it....
Well. That's my opinion. Thank you, drive through!