content by

Emily Asher-Perrin

I Don’t Want to F*** Him, I Want to BE Him

There was a moment in Jessica Jones’s second season that floored me, despite its seeming mundanity. It was when Trish Walker, former child star and Jessica’s best friend, turned down a marriage proposal from all around-great-guy and super-reporter Griffin. As Trish tries to handle the blowback from her toxic mother (who keeps insisting that Trish is throwing away her life by refusing the engagement), she finally puts her angst into words: “I don’t want to be with Griffin—I want to be him. I want to do what he does. And that’s not love, and it’s not fair to either one of us.”

This problem, this exact one, is wrapped around me like cling film, impossible to spot and harder to eradicate. I took a moment to try and count up the number of times I had been told that my admiration or emulation of a man (even a fictional one) amounted to romantic interest or sexual desire. I could not find an end to that number.

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A Wrinkle in Time Deserves a Place Next to All the Wild Fantasy Films of Your Childhood

If I could take all the beloved fantasy films of my childhood and coat them in glitter and light, A Wrinkle in Time would be sitting in front of me, winking. While diehard book advocates may find themselves bothered by the changes made in this adaptation, it is a gorgeous journey that deserves the taking with a cast that literally glows in every frame.

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Gaslighting and How to Combat It: The Power of Jessica Jones, Season One

The first season of Jessica Jones left most everyone I know with a lot to talk about. And there are plenty of reasons, of course—the show is smart, sassy, well-written, beautifully-acted, and features a female lead who is allowed to be as complex as women truly are.

It is also a show that puts female experiences of abuse and trauma under a microscope, and forces us to confront them.

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Farscape’s John + Aeryn Are Science Fiction’s Greatest Love Story

Science fiction as a genre has plenty of gorgeous love stories to go around, ones that leave you in tears or fill your insides with fluffy candy heart goulash (just pretend that sounds appetizing…). But for years now, when I think of the words “true love” there is only one pair that continues to impress me with how well they embody the phrase.

Farscape’s John Crichton and Aeryn Sun should be on the cover of a book called “How to Do Romance Right in Storytelling For All the Times Ever.” I will ghostwrite it, if you need me to.

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Here’s Why You Should Hunker Down and Binge-Watch All of Star Wars: Rebels

As fun as it can be, Star Wars is a pretty fraught universe. We don’t always talk about that because unpacking the vast amount of carnage and destitution is a pretty tall order for a franchise that is largely thought of as popcorn entertainment by the masses. But we also don’t really talk about it because most Star Wars stories are Big Picture ones. They are about the Most Important People doing the Most Important Things in the universe. And that typically comes with a lot of sadness and scale and scope.

Which is why it’s totally understandable that you might have missed Star Wars: Rebels bringing that galaxy far, far away down to earth.

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James Gunn Reveals That Adult Groot Actually Died in the First Guardians of the Galaxy Movie

There are certain things that make a person feel safe: Indiana Jones’s signature hat returns to him every time he loses it. Xena will always make that weird yodeling battle cry before she kicks people’s butts. Every ship that Starfleet hands to Jim Kirk must be named Enterprise. Groot grows back.

Except he doesn’t? Oh wow, this is going to take a while to recover from.

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All Robot Love Stories Are Conversations About Consent

I adore robot love stories because I adore robots. As characters, I mean—I’d probably be terrible with robots as they exist in our society now. Robots are an incredible filter for questions about humanity, what we value and what we are seeking as we push the boundaries of art and science. But when a human falls in love with a robot, or even engages with intimacy of any form with the human, there is a question posed by the very nature of their relationship:

Is consent possible?

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Dumbledore is Not “Explicitly” Gay in Upcoming Fantastic Beasts Film and That Makes No Sense

Last week it was revealed that J.K. Rowling’s screenplay for Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald will pretty much avoid the subject of Albus Dumbledore’s sexuality. Despite the fact that Dumbledore’s youthful infatuation with Gellert Grindelwald is a key factor in informing their meetings later in life, particularly during the point at which this film is set, as Grindelwald grows in power and Dumbledore is trying to avoid doing his utmost to stop him—a point in time when the shattered relationship between these two men is shaping the wizarding world in untold and terrifying ways.

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Identifying with “Uncool” Characters: Why I Love The Jungle Book’s Bagheera

When I was a kid (like a kid kid who was under the age of ten), I had a very specific pet peeve regarding the entertainment that I consumed. It centered around the inevitable bashing of any character who showed an inclination toward logic, pragmatism, and worry. My thirst for adventure—oddly—developed gradually, over time. As a very small human, I had an overly-developed sense of caution about the world, and so I was drawn to characters who looked before leaping, who made plans, who considered dangers.

What I’m trying to say is, I hated Disney’s The Jungle Book because no one listened to Bagheera.

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Star Wars: The Rebellion Won Because They Treated Their Droids Like People

It’s no great secret that R2-D2 is the real hero of Star Wars. In fact, that might be the fandom’s favorite joke of the past four decades—everyone would be dead, multiple times over, without that rolling trash can’s help. Same goes for C-3PO, if we take into account how Artoo relies on him to redirect the bad guys with his babbling and multitude of diplomatic excuses.

But the truth of the matter is a bit uglier than that. Because the only reason that R2-D2 is capable of helping in the first place is because he’s treated like a person… instead of an expensive piece of hardware.

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Small Stories, Big Worlds: Why I Love Epic Stories That Stay Personal

You know when you’re reading Lord of the Rings, and you really wish the book would just let us spend some time with Rosie Cotton while she’s busy slinging ale at the Green Dragon?

Or is that just me?

Fans of science fiction and fantasy love good worldbuilding. But setting the stage by creating a magnificent new realm usually means the plot focuses on major historical arcs in said world. Once you’ve set up so much, developed all the minute detail, it makes sense to do the broad strokes and really create a mythology. How to Save the World; How to Win the War; How to Shape Reality With a Few Simple Building Blocks. They make great blockbuster film trilogies. They demand the creations of fan wikis and doorstopper guidebooks. They are the stories we take comfort in whenever the world seems a bit too claustrophobic.

[But there’s something special about the stories that start small…]

Wow, People Are Really Mad at Poe Dameron

I mean, I’m not. But other people are.

At first glance, there’s an interesting theme at work in The Last Jedi. That theme seems to turn on practically every female character in the film looking to their male cohort and saying “Don’t do that!” and the men turning around and saying “I’m definitely going to do that!” And then things go generally wrong and we all plant our faces in our hands and sigh.

[But it’s so much bigger than that…]