Friday, June 15, 2012
Token Smokin' Hottie: Ripley
Having seen Prometheus at the weekend (forget the haters: I thought it was great schlocky fun, much of which didn't make a lick of sense and really didn't have to) I subsequently rewatched Alien, which is - for a sci-fi movie made in freaking 1979 - holding up pretty damn well. I've seen the sequel, Aliens, plenty of times because it's a classic but it'd been ages since I'd gone back to the first movie and I'd forgotten how much I love, love, love Ripley. Of course she is awesome in Aliens, where she's super tough right from the start (is it possible to NOT get chills every time you hear "get away from her you bitch"?), but I think I almost like her better in Alien, where she's a bit softer around the edges but you can see her hardening up as crew members around her keep, uh, dying horrifically. (Is that a spoiler? I don't think it's a spoiler. If you haven't got around to seeing Alien sometime in the past 30+ years you're probably not going to go out and see it tomorrow. Although, really, you should. It's great fun.)
Only when you get a movie (or indeed a string of movies) with a bitchingly awesome female lead - particularly in, although not limited to the action genre - who isn't just a love interest do you realise how few and far between they are. I'm not trying to make this into a rant but, seriously, it's a rarity and it can be a bit depressing. Do I need to explain why the likes of Angelina Jolie as the titular (heh) star of Tomb Raider doesn't count? No? Good.
Movies like Alien make me want to do away with M or MA ratings for movies because shit like this shouldn't be kept from kids: it should be fucking forced on young girls to stop them from growing up on a diet of nothing but bullshit movies/TV that tells them their happiness is tied to their ability to weigh less than 120 pounds, have perky tits and find "The One" (again, do I even need to talk about how bullshit this idea of The One is? Is that a conversation that's even worth starting? No? Aw, you guys are the best).
What better role model for the youth of today than Ripley, who starts off the movie disobeying her Captain's orders because she knows best. And she's right: she does know best. It's just a pity everyone else are kind of fucking morons and the only other smart person on the ship is a) evil as fuck b) an android.
To summarise, Ripley is everything a girl should be: tough, brave, smart, likes cats and I love her. And, hey, nobody ever said it was a crime to look good in a tank-top and a pair of skimpy undies.