I get the impression that the regressive left wants to be in a hostile world. Every day I’m hearing about how the “far right” or some other bogeyman is furious at various minority groups or women for doing something, but upon seeking out these horrible haters I’m only able to drum up a handful of tweets, some of them completely taken out of context.
Recently, we were treated to headlines from various outlets declaring that internet trolls were descending upon the upcoming installment to the Terminator franchise, Terminator: Dark Fate with all the sexist and misogynistic fury of the next Hitler.
“Trolls started bashing the film the minute Paramount debuted key art depicting all three women together. For director Tim Miller, that misogynistic backlash is meaningless,” wrote IndieWire’s Zack Sharf.
Clicking on the link to the SMH — apropos acronym — the author, Erin Ben-Moche, wrote “and predictably, fanboys of the internet have responded with bitter rage.”
The proof for all this posturing? A single tweet containing pictures of a few tweets in which a few Twitter users — mostly anonymous — make judgment calls about the film. One of the conversations read more like a couple of guys who have been burned by Hollywood over feminist reboots in the past than misogynists.
— Viv Heaton (@viv_heaton) August 1, 2018
Even Variety covered Miller’s quote but didn’t provide anything to back up Miller’s stunning and brave stance about resisting misogynists.
The thing about Terminator is that it’s nearly always had a bad ass female lead. Linda Hamilton, who plays Sarah Connor in the movies, is often cited as one of the best examples of well-written action heroines whenever a disciple of Brie Larson comes along and claims there aren’t any.
Terminator fans aren’t even budged by the presence of a female terminator either. We cheered on Lena Heady’s Sarah Conner while we fell in love with Summer Glau’s portrayal of Cameron, a female terminator protagonist, during Fox’s run of Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles.
If a fandom is toxic, it’s definitely not the Terminator camp.
The truth is that, as a few of those Twitter users demonstrated in the example of “sexism” and “misogyny,” they’ve seen what happens when an all-female reboot happens, and it’s not pretty. It tends to demolish what made the franchises so special from the beginning, and they’re tired of seeing these forced attempts at injecting political current-yearism into their escapism. The 2016 reboot of Ghostbusters with an all-female cast perfectly encapsulates this. The movie Ocean’s 8, an all-female reboot of the Ocean’s franchise, was also a lukewarm attempt.
When people see that something looks like it’s going to get a reboot with with women in the roles typically filled by men, there’s going to be a bit of doubt because movie-goers have typically experienced less-than-stellar results when this has happened. That’s not sexism, it’s just experience.
However, the Terminator franchise barely got a negative reaction. In fact, I was in the theater when the trailer for Dark Fate debuted and the reaction around the theater when Hamilton made her appearance was positive, especially by the men. This includes myself.
What worries me is that Miller is already gearing up to bash the “trolls” and “misogynists” before the movie has even released and a shallow selection of negativity around it. This doesn’t speak well for the movie in my opinion. It tells me that Miller isn’t exactly confident in the movie himself and he’s already gearing up with a 2016 Ghostbuster’s defense.
“People didn’t like the movie because they’re sexist,” will be something I hope I don’t hear in the future, because I truly want the movie to be good, but Miller is already teeing up the ball, or so it seems.