Well. It’s 2016. Since it’s tradition (and since I’m in South Africa on a school trip and don’t wanna write a normal post), let’s take a look at my rants essays from this past year.
Five Most Popular/Viewed Posts
#5: Let’s Talk About That Whole Black Widow Thing
Hoo boy, yeah, that’s one way to start off this year-in-review. I stand by this post (that there’s nothing inherently problematic with Black Widow’s characterization in Age of Ultron, rather the real issue is that we have one female character to tell every female narrative) and yeah, that’s about all there is to say about that.
#4: Masculinity in Age of Ultron
While we’re on the topic of Age of Ultron, one thing it did well was offer multiple narratives for how masculinity looks (which it could have stood to done for Widow, see above). This one was fun to do, ‘cuz I do always like getting into the bits and bobs of story.
#3: Sorry Nate, There’s No Princess In This Castle
2015 is when Essays, Not Rants! inadvertently became a mildly feminist blog. Combined with A Manic Pixie Dream Problem and Another Boyband Saving The World, I accidentally spent three weeks really digging into the way woman are portrayed in fiction. It’s not something I have much of a background in, but it is certainly something I enjoy.
#2: But What Is A Strong Female Protagonist?
Speak of the devil. I guess there is a demand of sorts for this sort of essay. What I wanted to do here was look at the idea that ‘strong female protagonists/characters’ have to physically kick ass. They don’t They just gotta be written like actual people who want stuff. Who knew?
#1: Why I Take Issue With Johnny Storm Being Black
I’m sorry. That’s a clickbait title if I ever saw one. I’m worse than Buzzfeed. If you don’t wanna click the clickbait, basically it’s great that they’re willing to diversify the Fantastic Four. Less great is that it leaves me wishing they went all the way and decided to make Sue black too. Again, sorry about the title.
Josh’s Pick of Three
#3: Just So We’re Clear, Rey Is The Best
I have no other reason for listing this one except for the fact that Rey is very much the best.
#2: (Re)Constructing Narratives
The past six months have been big for me. I wrote (and defended) what is essentially my thesis at school and a lot of the posts on this blog have been related to it. This one especially, and it actually has the name I’d eventually give my concentration (Narrative (Re)Construction).
#1: Jessica Jones: Not Your Victim
This was a post well outside my wheelhouse, and I’m pretty proud that I managed to write it kinda successfully. Essays, Not Rants! is often a place for me to sound out ideas or tackle subjects I’m not used to. This is one of those, and it’s moments like that that make the blog for me.
So there you have it. A post about a bunch of other posts. That, well, that would have been 2015. Onwards to 2016!