When Women Will Loom Large

Yesterday I went to watch Blade Runner 2049.

There will be no spoilers in this post, but I can’t guarantee the same for the comments.

I liked it a lot, and if you liked the original then I will guess you’ll like the new one too. It is a beautiful and legitimate science fiction film. It is not message fiction dressed up in sci-fi garb, but a long (164 minutes) visual question of, “What does it mean to be human?”

One of the themes of the film is that women are big players in this vision of the future (both figuratively and literally), but they are not at the very top. At the top is Niander Wallace, a handsome and white man of science who saves the world from starvation. But the lives of everyone under the very top are ruled, tempted, and overwhelmingly influenced by females, or their form.

I thought it quite probable.

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24 thoughts on “When Women Will Loom Large

  1. The women look high-testosterone, and to me high-testosterone women look pagan. And technologically advanced societies aren’t pagan. So…

    I haven’t been to the theatres in a while; maybe I’ll go on the recommendation, to watch it as fantasy.

    Aren’t some of those characters androids?

  2. @ Alan J. Perrick says:
    October 10, 2017 at 12:15 am

    “The women look high-testosterone, and to me high-testosterone women look pagan. And technologically advanced societies aren’t pagan. So…”

    The Romans, Greeks, Babylonians and Egyptians were all more technologically advanced than the Hebrews. They were all pagans.

    Today, Japan may be the most technologically advanced country in the world. Japan is pagan.

    Christians built the foundation on which science was built, so as that foundation erodes, science will eventually collapse. In the mean time, smart pagans will continue to carry it forward for some unknown length of time.

    “There’s a great deal of ruin in a nation.” ~ Adam Smith

  3. I don’t mind long & pretty but was it fun to watch? There’s been a trend in Hollywood to replace Harrison Ford while making bad sequels: Indiana Jones, Han Solo and now Deckard?

  4. @GunnerQ

    I would use the term enjoyable rather than fun. The action sequences are visceral, and sometimes delightful. However, it’s not an action movie, and the BR world is a dystopian future; bleak and materialist. There is a lot of nudity, but it’s never lascivious.

  5. @CC

    I would disagree about the nudity. Relatively speaking there was very little, especially for an R film. Unless I am forgetting several scenes, I can only name two instances.

    However my fascination lies with the narrative reasons for the biggest (literally) and most obvious moment of nudity.

    [**Spoilers follow**]

    We spend the entire film examining the concept of humanity. At the moment when K interacts with “Pink Joi” we have been shown three ‘versions’ of what it means to be human, specifically female. One is real humans, of which females are especially hardened or dystopian in appearance; we see no human nudity. We are shown Replicant nudity however, though this is purely utilitarian (from either a biological or narrative nature) and demonstrates the key problem Wallace is trying to solve, that of barren female forms. We are shown a naked female replicant but it is done so that we might realize how useless the female form is without being able to reproduce. We see this too, in the scenes with the “pleasure models”. They are empty caverns and dry cisterns. Yet for all that, we are still only shown fleeting, utilitarian or purely biological views of their nudity.

    Last we see Joi, an AI “waifu” who is the only example of purely sexual nudity in the entire film. Whereas Replicants are shown to wrestle with the idea of their own “humanity”, Joi just simply *is*. What is interesting is that where skinjobs lack a soul, Joi lacks a true form. She isn’t physical at all and can really only pantomime humans. Yet that is exactly what she was created for; to be human-like. “Pink Joi’s” nudity is the story telling us that her love, and her nature, was just an illusion. It I is supposed to further drive home the idea that Reps are very different than AI. They are not an “illusion”. They have the ability to become autonomous. They may be “more human than human”, despite their inability to reproduce (though the point is that even that fact may not be true). Whereas Joi is literally the essence of, the simplest version of, what Reps were originally intended to be, Replicants have consistently found themselves fighting that nature in the BR universe. That the storytellers could highlight this in the use of nudity is amazing to me.

    I find it fascinating when a director can communicate so much in so small a detail.

    Also, some other ideas I have been thinking on since I saw it a week ago:

    Luv, who is devoted to helping Wallace, is visibly emotional (in various ways) at her inability to both be *all* that Wallace needs (his special angel, the mother of others, or the creator thereof) and to help him discover the special child that holds the key to his struggle. She fears being replaced while being obsessed with helping Wallace. This is a uniquely female struggle. I wonder if the “desire” idea here needs to be amended to take into consideration that femininity is a vector, as opposed to a simple velocity (desire), pointed towards men?

    Also, regarding Joi again. I find it quite timely for us to see a not-so-out-there relationship between K and her. The film is explicit in the fact that Joi is for eyes, ears and, ultimately, hearts only. “Anything you want to see, Anything you want to hear” Yet we do not see any “Joes”. Is this uniquely a male situation? I think so. I can identify with the feelings of loneliness that could lead a man to purchase an AI waifu to fill the emotional void in his life. Especially when this AI would be everything I could want in a wife. Submissive, encouraging, supportive, devoted, and unfailingly so in all situations. If I could achieve sexual fulfillment in some other fashion and, given the opportunity in my past single life, I’m sure I would have been tempted to buy one. Talk about men fleeing marriage! Thankfully I had no such opportunity and didn’t have to wrestle with that. Marriage, though by no means perfect, is far more satisfying.

    What’s interesting is already there are feminists railing against this idea of men pursuing the perfect female (Joi) that they refuse to be. They denigrate the concept as being a sex-bot, completely misunderstanding what men are seeking in such a relationship. Is this the future of porn? Will it seem wholesome and good in the future? Will women realize that the more they strive to understand what men want and why (and be willing to embrace giving that gift themselves) they can find the purpose of their desire?

    Just some random, unorganized thoughts. What do you all say?

  6. Thanks for the warning, BlackKnight. “What does it mean to be human?” is a question only the Godless care about. They can’t find the answer because they’ve already rejected it.

  7. Pingback: This Week In Reaction (2017/10/15) - Social Matter

  8. It took a while, but I eventually recognized my folly, so there is hope! Although, I’m sure there’s plenty more folly where that came from.

  9. @Oscar

    The “need for real diversity” in comics is met by a trademarked Strong Independent Woman? Is the diversity merely the addition of stars and bars?

  10. >> Case in point, this is one of the central heroes.

    She is a secondary character who is getting facetime and special comic covers because she triggers the SJW-types. Also many Southron types on Vox’s blog who call it the War of Northern Aggression.

    Now that you’ve mentioned it, I see the PJ Media article over-emphasizes the Confederate flag art of the project.

  11. @ Lost Patrol says:
    October 20, 2017 at 6:43 pm

    “The ‘need for real diversity’ in comics is met by a trademarked Strong Independent Woman?”

    Whose name is Rebel!

    SH may be right, she may be a secondary character, I haven’t read the comic. Still, it would’ve been even more triggering to SJWs if it had been a male named Confederate Captain, or something like that, so triggering SJWs is clearly not the only reason she’s featured.

  12. Oscar @ October 20, 2017 at 6:59 pm:
    “Whose name is Rebel!”

    I thought her name was Dynamique? Are there two female superheroes?

    “SH may be right, she may be a secondary character, I haven’t read the comic. Still, it would’ve been even more triggering to SJWs if it had been a male named Confederate Captain, or something like that, so triggering SJWs is clearly not the only reason she’s featured.”

    It’s probably an Alpha thing. They like their female eye candy and they swim in so much female attention anyway, I doubt it’s even a sin for them. Then there’s guys like me who have grown so weary of being shown unattainable sexy women that we just want TPTB to quit yanking on our belts.

    Women aren’t supposed to be heroes. They’re supposed to appreciate heroes. Alt-Hero will probably be good enough on its own merits but it fails at the central concept of being a male fantasy.

  13. @ Gunner

    “Being a good Southern girl, Rebel made her own costume, and the straps are supposed to be tied. However, considering how often they seem to come undone, she is giving some serious thought to having someone design her a more practical outfit.” ~ Vox Day

    Like I said, I haven’t read the comic. I recently ran across the PJ Media article and began googling.

  14. @ Gunner

    “Women aren’t supposed to be heroes.”

    I wouldn’t go that far. Women CAN be heroic, and some are, but the ones who are do so in a feminine way. For many such examples, I’d encourage you to read “Women Heroes of WWII”.

    My favorite is Irena Sendler, “the Angel of the Warsaw Ghetto”, who used her position as a nurse to sneak hundreds of Jewish children out of the ghetto and into adoptive families. What you’ll notice, though, is that, like Jael in the Book of Judges, the ladies in the book used their femininity to lull enemy men into a false sense of security. They didn’t challenge the enemy to fight.

  15. @ Gunner

    “I thought her name was Dynamique? Are there two female superheroes?”

    There are at least two female superheroes, maybe three, and one that looks like a villain.

  16. There is an old wives’ tale that redheads are more hot-tempered, sassy, and spunky.
    And nerds dream of a hot chick to fight for them. The unicorn must exist! That’s why the GamerGate was a redhead chick also.

    Triggering SJWs is why “Rebel” is wearing confederate symbols, but her existence is just because fanboys love to imagine strong sassy women. Can you imagine a comic which guest-starring a modest heroine? I mean: Who would bother to read it? To me it just looks like an attempt to go back to “The Good Old Days of Traditional Comics”, back when men were men and women were men you wouldn’t mind porking.

    In the long view I don’t really care. Vox has some good projects going; Castalia House, InfoGalactic, and his blog. The Alt-Heroines are a mis-step. I’ll get over it. I mean: I live in a world where Christian women wear super tight jeans with spangly crosses on the ass. The other day I saw a mother of two with a tee shirt that said “Daughter of the King”, a “cold sore” the size of Dallas, and a spandexed camel toe I could see from the curb to her front door.

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