Sexualized Saturdays: Sexualities in A Nightmare on Elm Street 2

A horror movie from the early 80’s may not seem like a likely choice for a discussion of sexuality, but when that movie is A Nightmare on Elm Street 2: Freddy’s Revenge, it’s quite a different story.

Nightmare on Elm Street 2Sex is a common element in horror movies; in fact it’s usually the main indicator of who’s going to die (sexually active people) and who’s going to live (virgins, or at least monogamous partners) but very rarely have horror movies explicitly depicted anything other than heterosexual relationships until recently. There have been exceptions, such as the cult classic Sleepaway Camp, but the second Nightmare film is probably one of the most mainstream horror films to have included not only homosexual subtext but also blatant, in-your-face homosexual text. Today I will discuss three of the main characters from the film: Coach Schneider, the Phys. Ed. teacher; Jesse, the lead; and Grady, the friend.

(WARNING: Under the cut is a lengthy and mildly NSFW article)

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Sexualized Saturdays: Tops and Bottoms

"I know fanfic authors, well, I know what they like.

“I know fanfic authors, well, I know what they like.


One of the things that really bothers me in fanfiction is something as simple as arguing over who is the “top” and “bottom” in a pairing. If magically there are somehow no arguments about who’s on top, then I notice that one person in a pairing is constantly seen as the bottom because they are “weaker and more stereotypically feminine.”

I should stress that I feel this is mostly a slash fanfiction problem, but het pairings and femslash pairings are not exempt in any way. Het pairings simply delegate the women to the role of a “bottom,” but femslash tends to avoid top and bottom debates, though there are some exceptions, such as if a female character tends to be more “stereotypically masculine,” then she will more than likely be on “top.”

Have you seen the key factor here? Hint: it’s a penis.

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Sexualized Saturdays: Willow Rosenberg

Ah, Buffy, how I have such fun memories of thee. I remember always getting excited to sit down to watch some good old fashion vampire murderage, until my parents entered the room to watch it too. Coming from a conservative Christian home and growing up with parents who forced me into joining the middle-school basketball team every Tuesday night right during airtime—under the threat that I couldn’t watch the show unless I joined up, no less! Sense?—Buffy the Vampire Slayer wholeheartedly and irrevocably reverted the hour it aired every week into what Lady Geek Girl and I once nominated as the Parental Bitching Hour. It was the cause of debate, for more reasons than my being blackmailed into unwanted sports that I won’t bore you with the details of.

I don’t know how Buffy managed to piss my parents off so much, as it wasn’t the kind of show they normally invest themselves in, but it raised many an argument in my home. Normally, it went something like this:

“I can’t believe you watch this garbage, Ace! Why don’t you play some sports?”

“…Because I like vampires?”

“You don’t need this fantasy crap when you have the news. Besides, not everyone’s a lesbian!”

“I just want to watch my show. Please?”

Yeah, in order to actually know what was going the hell on in the plot over the tantrum brought on by Willow—the evil slut!—I had to wait for the DVD releases and watch the series all again in the quiet of a dorm room, right underneath the drunken party the floor above me.

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Sexualized Saturdays: Men and Women Can Never Be Friends—And Neither Can Anyone Else

What I’m saying is—and this is not a come-on in any way, shape or form—is that men and women can’t be friends because the sex part always gets in the way.

—Harry (When Harry Met Sally)

These iconic words from the romantic comedy When Harry Met Sally seem to be something that both the media and the fandom have taken to heart—and not just with heterosexual relationships.

It is a sad fact that in the media men and women are rarely just friends. There is usually some sort of attraction, sexual tension, or sexual relationship. This happens all the time: when two characters in a TV show meet for the first time, and one’s male and one’s female, it doesn’t take much to figure out that they will most likely end up in a relationship at some point in the show.

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Sexualized Saturdays: The Doctor is…?

Oh, have I ever been excited to write this post. For the purposes of this post which I am excited to write, let it be known that I am only familiar with the events and companions of the 2005 series and the first season of Hartnell’s Doctor. Also, I’m looking specifically at the person of the Doctor and how he behaves and what is in character for him, and not at the meta societal influences that have shaped the casting, writing, and acting choices made in the show.

The Time Lord we know and love is a tricky character, because we actually know next to nothing about him. We don’t know his real name, or if he even has one (although this season might change that?); we don’t know how Time Lords reproduce, or if they get married or have similar social norms. And since sexuality is tied up in gender, you have to factor in that it’s been introduced in canon that Time Lord regeneration is not restricted to one gender, and so therefore it’s difficult to put a label on that as well.

So given that we have only circumstantial evidence to go on, where do we go from here?

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Sexualized Saturdays: Poison Ivy

Okay, first I want to explain a few things about Poison Ivy so that we can better understand her sexuality within the context of her character development.

Poison Ivy is an ecoterrorist and a straw feminist. A straw feminist is a character who is labelled as a feminist only in a effort to ridicule or prove feminism wrong.

I should also mention that there is such a thing as an ecofeminist, who believes that the oppression women have suffered is similar to the suffering and oppression inflicted on the environment. This form of feminism, like most other forms, dislikes a hierarchy that puts one group above another, whether it’s men over women or humans over the environment, and recognizes more of a symbiotic relationship of all things.

So, Poison Ivy, at her worst, is probably a straw ecofeminist. She hates all men and cares only for plants, but in later years, maybe in an effort to down play her original straw feminist bent, Poison Ivy starts to hate all of humanity. In current incarnations Poison Ivy herself has morphed into a plant like human and she believes that humanity should be wiped out since they harm nature. Despite her hatred of all humanity, there is one person Poison Ivy does seem to care about, Harley Quinn.

It would be easy to simply claim Poison Ivy is asexual since she seems completely uninterested in people. Despite often seducing them to achieve her own ends, Poison Ivy never seems to have genuine attraction or affection for anyone. It would also be easy to claim Poison Ivy is a lesbian since she only seems to care about Harley Quinn, but things are much more complex than that.

Before she was Poison Ivy, she was Pamela Lillian Isley, a botanist working with Dr. Jason Woodrue who seduced her and turned her into the plant-human hybrid she is today. Woodrue is the reason that Poison Ivy hates all men. And though I stated that eventually her story is changed to hating all people, Poison Ivy still has a special hatred for men. Batman, Two-Face, Woodrue, and especially the Joker are targets for her wrath against men. That doesn’t, however, mean she’s not attracted to men. As mentioned earlier Poison Ivy’s hatred of men is there to paint her as this straw feminist character, but she is still obviously interested in men. She liked Woodrue before he betrayed her, and in season two of Batman: The Animated Series in the episode “Home and Garden” Poison Ivy married her very male doctor. Yes, he’s later revealed to be a plant, but she could have made a female spouse if she was more into that.

So, I really think that Poison Ivy isn’t necessarily a lesbian. She has just been given this male-hating persona, which somehow equates to lesbian, sadly. Even in recent years making her hate all people hasn’t changed the fact that she defiantly hates men more.

Later, Poison Ivy is often paired with Harley Quinn when the two form an unlikely friendship. Harley is the only person Poison Ivy seems to like or care about. Though it’s never explicitly stated that they have a sexual relationship it is heavily, heavily implied.







They are often shown scantily clad, or naked together, and even Batgirl has questions about their relationship. They both seem to really care about each other too. It has often been remarked that if it wasn’t for Harley constantly intervening, Poison Ivy would have killed the Joker a long time ago in order to protect Harley. And though much of their relationship could easily be attributed to a male lesbian fantasy in comics, I tend to think that they actually have something.

Poison Ivy seems to be stuck in the friend zone with Harley. I do think that Harley and Poison Ivy have maybe experimented sexually, but Harley if anything is more Joker-sexual than bisexual and her devotion to the Joker won’t allow her to make any commitment to Poison Ivy. Harley is beaten and almost killed by the Joker and then runs to Poison Ivy’s comforting arms, Poison Ivy then wants to kill the Joker to avenge Harley, but Harley stops her and goes back to the Joker–and the cycle continues.

There is no concrete evidence for their relationship, but I think there is a lot of circumstantial evidence that shows Poison Ivy loves Harley Quinn, maybe even despite herself, but Harley is too involved with the Joker to see Poison Ivy as anything but a friend, thus bringing about the central conflict in their relationship.

Sexualized Saturdays: The Sims

I love this game. I love it so much. I don’t know why; it’s pretty much a computerized version of a dollhouse, and I haven’t touched one of those since I gave up babysitting. You get the house, and you get the personality free avatars to impose upon whatever story your little heart desires. I don’t know about the rest of you, but personally, I always tried to make my families as screwed up as possible. Husbands would cheat on their wives with their wives’ sisters and brothers, while being impregnated by aliens. Women would woo-hoo anything capable of walking. And I would occasionally create characters just to kill for the sake of a haunted house.

And for the record, it’s impossible to kill a kid, because social services will take it away. Even if you delete all the doors and windows, the worker will just teleport inside the house. And hell if your brat fails school, it gets shipped off to the military academy. But I digress.

I also spent a good so many hours trying to make a brother and sister incestuous, and after all that wasted time, I finally had to admit defeat. Brothers and sisters won’t woo-hoo each other. Second cousins will, though.

Anyway, the point of a dollhouse is to more or less play house. Two people get married, find jobs, have a kid or twelve, and they don’t need to do it in that order. But even as a young girl and playing with dolls, I always had to have a story or it wouldn’t be fun. It’s kind of hard to have a story in The Sims. It sounds childish, but you can’t really pick up the people and impose voices upon them or give them any identifying characteristics outside their clothes and hairdo. There isn’t much to do in The Sims other than click “run here” or “eat breakfast” or “stop playing on the fucking computer and go to work, you damn slacker!”

And while one doesn’t need to impose his or her own voice onto the screen when you can simply chose between telling them to make a joke or flirt or just plain talk—the Sims do have their very own Sim language that no one can understand, so it’s like playing charades—you can’t control how they’ll react. If you could, my brother and sister characters wouldn’t be freaking out whenever I make them tell each other something dirty.

Of course, it’s probably better this way. I don’t know about the rest of you, but you know that somewhere out there someone talks into his or her computer screen to make the story more realistic.

But by the very nature of the game, outside family members, it’s possible to hook anyone up with anyone. Anyone. There’s always something about games like this that rubs me the wrong way. Especially because I very rarely ever make a normal gay couple as opposed to trying to see what I can and cannot get the characters to do. I only ever make straight pairings when I want to produce a baby at some point. I never play The Sims to play house. I play it to ruin people’s lives.

However, it doesn’t surprise me that all the characters are bisexual, since I very much doubt that sometime soon we will see an option to choose a character’s sexuality. And even if that happens, the options would probably be only straight, gay, or bi. Sexuality is much too complicated to easily be used correctly in a game like this—then again, so is life. If they ever did that, they would then be obligated later on to make a transsexual option, or an asexual one, and you know that somewhere out there someone would be upset that they didn’t have a homoromantic heterosexual option. And I don’t know about you, but that last one I would still only use to see what I can and cannot make the characters do.

I shouldn’t really compare The Sims to a dollhouse, because it’s designed to be much more realistic than that, but for me realism dies when it comes to the sexuality. I have no problem with gay characters, and as it’s my own neighborhood, it’s my own fault for screwing up everyone and having an unrealistic ratio of gay to straight people. It’s more the fact that I can do that with no trouble at all that bothers me.

But even calling all the Sims bisexual doesn’t sit well. Earlier today, I thought about calling them pansexual, and between the two terms, I’m not sure which one fits best. You see, despite no lack of trying, the amount of non-personality that all the characters have means that everyone is exactly the same. The only thing that separates a character from another character is physicality. You have a man, well, he’s going to be wearing man clothes, but you can make him do whatever the hell you want him to do. Yeah, a man can’t dress like a woman, but you can make him as feminine as fucking possible when you try to give him a personality, which is mostly determined by how much he likes to clean or something similar. Because there’s no identity, there’s also no gender identity. That fact that it’s damn near impossible to have any kind of gender-identity makes me hesitant to call any of the Sims pansexual. But even if there was, it wouldn’t matter because they’d still woo-hoo anyone, which makes me hesitant to call any of the Sims bisexual.

It’s not a world where any sexuality exists, because even if you design a man and woman to be together, both of them would be more than willing to get with someone of the same gender. This is a world where only bisexuals exist. And while I know why game makers do this, I don’t really understand why they feel the need to. Because it’s not there to help show equality between the sexualities; it’s there so you can pimp out anyone to anyone as you play through trying to figure out what’s possible and what’s not.