Things We Saw Today: Jonesy the Cat From Alien Gets His Own Book

Jonesy watches the mayhem in Alien

Wednesdays tend to be terrible days for everyone, so to get you through the week, we’re going to focus on cats. Namely Jonesy the cat, heroic survivor of Alien.

Titan Books has just released Jonesy: Nine Lives on the Nostromo, written and illustrated by Rory Lucey. The book tells the story of the film from Jonesy’s feline perspective, tackling the terrifying tale with humor.

“For a movie that ends with two survivors, one of them being Jonesy the cat, we really don’t get to see much of what the cat is up to throughout the film,” Lucey said. “As an artist who lives with a goofy orange feline, I started sketching what nine lives on the Nostromo might be like, which is how this book got started.”

Of course, thankfully, the cat does not die in Alien, so no need to worry if the book will bring both young and old readers to tears. The film doesn’t shy away from the scarier moments though, like the death of Brett. Still, Lucey isn’t saying this book is for older readers only; just maybe talk to your kids before having them sit down to see Jonesy’s live-action adventure.

  • Donald Trump doesn’t believe in global warming because his uncle never talked about it. We’re going to die. (via AP)
  • Joe Cornish is finally releasing a follow-up to Attack the Block that looks delightfully weird.  (via Twitter)
  • Buzzfeed writer Alanna Bennett wrote an excellent piece on the relevance of Practical Magic (via Buzzfeed)
  • Orange is the New Black will end with season seven. (via The Hollywood Reporter)
  • Our favorite person, Lin-Manuel Miranda, reads a poem that helps him cope with the loss of Anthony Bourdain. (via Twitter)

(via io9; Image: 20th Century Fox)

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The World is a Mess, So Here Are Attractive Celebrities Wearing Glasses

Chris Hemsworth in Bad Times at the El Royale

Whenever the world is on fire, we like to escape to the Internet. So why not escape to a wonderful list of lovely celebrities wearing glasses?

That’s all this is—beautiful men and women in pairs of spectacles to make our hearts flutter. We began cooking this up in Mary Sue chat to cure ourselves of the horrors of 2018 and decided that everyone could use a bit of bespectacled levity in their lives right now.

Ryan Reynolds is funny and easy on the eyes, and what is wrong with him? Have we figured that out? Anything?

What’s better than Jon Hamm in a suit? Jon Hamm in an infinity scarf and glasses.

Give us Idris Elba in glasses and with a beard or give us death!

Look, who doesn’t love Gillian Anderson? Especially a Gillian Anderson in glasses?

Okay so we are all in love with Michael Scott now and that’s fine.

Nothing but respect for MY president looking smart as can be in these respectable frames.

Is there any look that Chris Hemsworth CAN’T rock?

Sebastian Stan in glasses is the biggest RT if you agree.

If Oscar Isaac isn’t wearing a beanie and eating Hot Cheetos with chopsticks, then I want him wearing these glasses.

Look, Erik Killmonger was certainly a LOOK. And we have never recovered from that look.

We all love Tessa Thompson but we especially love Tessa Thompson wearing glasses.

These are maybe technically sunglasses but Chris Evans still looks adorable so we’re counting it.

Put Jessica Chastain in every movie with a pair of glasses, please and thank you.

As if we needed more reasons to love Chris Pine.

Look if you told me when I was a kid that I’d still love Cole Sprouse in 2018, I’d probably believe you, and this picture with him in glasses helps to confirm that.

Our very own vampire, Eva Green, in a pair of glasses is here to make you fall in love.

And of course, we couldn’t forget the best babe who loves his glasses and likely uses them to read sonnets: Tom Hiddleston.

So you may have to go back to the trash fire that is the world currently, but at least you can always come back to these celebrities in glasses to make you feel better. If only this was all that existed on Twitter, ever, we’re pretty sure there’d be peace on Earth.

(image: 20th Century Fox)

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Rachel Bloom and the Devil Talk About Rape Culture

Rachel Bloom has always been very vocal about the pressing issues in our culture. If it isn’t singing a song about the importance of voting, it’s a sketch outlining the necessity of mental health checks. Her brilliant TV show, Crazy Ex-Girlfriend, is often trending on Twitter because of the catchy songs and their relevant topics.

So now, partnering with Refinery29, Rachel is bringing the Devil in to talk about how rape culture is something that we should all be discussing: “Let’s talk about it, not normalize it,” reads the title card.

And, surprisingly, the Devil also makes some great points, while he and his advocate learn what so many women experience and the way their experiences are treated.

But as the Devil points out, rape culture isn’t just geared towards women. In our media, we also make light of consent in regards to men. In movies, TV shows, and comedy clubs, jokes about prison rape are common. It’s considered “funny” or assumed that a man must want to have sex when an older woman comes on to a younger man or when a woman like Kim Basinger’s character in Fifty Shades of Grey takes the virginity of a much young man, we’re supposed to see it as fine. (To be fair to Fifty Shades of Grey, they do a great job of shaming Basinger’s character when it is discovered what she did to Christian Grey. And this is the only time I praise that series for anything.)

What’s also excellent about this informational time with Ms. Bloom is that it’s part of a series of Rachel using comedic videos and songs to teach us about important cultural concerns. Whether it is body image or using the Devil to bring up points about rape culture, Rachel Bloom has a way of addressing issues that show her point of view while also educating us all.

This video is just the first of three that Rachel wrote. The other two will focus on STD testing and vaginal health.

Rachel Bloom may be wrapping up Crazy Ex-Girlfriend, but hopefully, this is a new partnership that we’ll get to see more of. Rachel has always had the kind of voice online that makes us want to listen. If it isn’t from her songs, it is from her wit. We want her around as much as humanly possible.

We want to listen to what Rachel Bloom has to say. A lot of the issues she explores as songs, and we’re thankful when those get in our head and make us think about it more and more. But this sketch shows how equally effective a simple back-and-forth conversation can be, and it gives us a blueprint for how to have similar conversations in our own lives.

(image: screengrab)

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Jason Blum’s Excuse For Not Hiring Female Directors is Pretty Terrible

Jamie Lee Curtis_Halloween

Blumhouse is one of the smartest studios working today. Their horror films are more often than not well received, and producer Jason Blum has had his name on some seriously big projects. He’s worked with some stellar directors and writers, but with the upcoming release of Halloween, it might be time to ask why none of the directors of their theatrically released films have been female. Of course, Blum had an answer. A pretty terrible answer.

“We’re always trying to that. We’re not trying to do it because of recent events. We’ve always been trying,” Blum said. He went on to add: “There are not a lot of female directors period, and even less who are inclined to do horror.” He went on to talk about how he’d tried to enlist Jennifer Kent, who directed The Babadook, to work with Blumhouse. He then called an assistant to remind him of another woman they’d spoken to in a moment that made me embarrassed to read about. Calling your assistant to remind you of a female director’s name is just never a good look, especially when you can only name two female directors you’ve spoken to.

There are not as many female directors as male directors, that much is true, but to use that as an excuse to not actively court women to direct their films is absurd. Many of the directors who Blumhouse has worked with are hardly big names, and the popularity of the studio combined with their low budget approach makes it the perfect ground to give new talent a shot. All it would take would be a little more digging and care, but if they’re going to such lengths to perfect their strategy of crowd pleasing horror films, they can devote a little time to finding a woman to step behind the camera.

Also, you can ask more than one woman. Just because Kent turned down a project doesn’t mean that there are no other women out there. Make some calls, go to some festivals, and pound the pavement until you find some great, undiscovered talent who deserves a big break. And before someone tells me “oh it should be decided based on their body of work, not their gender,” let me remind you that many of the people Blumhouse has worked with do not have extensive resumes, or are horror maestros. There’s room to take a shot on a woman.

There’s also another misconception buried in that deeply problematic statement. Women directors apparently aren’t drawn to horror. This ties into the notion that women themselves do not like horror films. That is patently not true. Most of the people I see talking about and engaging with horror movies and television shows online are women. The most thoughtful criticisms of the genre are oftentimes written by women. Also, women don’t need to prove that they like a genre to come play with the boys?

It’s a sweeping generalization to say that women do not like horror films, just like saying women do not like superheroes or science fiction. Women are not a hive mind. There are some women who do not like horror, but there are others who adore it. To just write an entire gender off based on a generalization is completely ridiculous. It’s exclusionary and, pardon my French, absolute bullshit.

Blum should step back and think about his actions, apologize, and make a concerted effort to find female directors for his coming projects. Otherwise, his studio will eventually fall behind as talented female directors seek a studio that supports their vision, while Blumhouse is left recycling old ideas and the same directors.

(via Polygon; Image: Universal/Blumhouse)

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Dragon Ball Super Dub Cast on Their Characters & the Universal Impact of the Series

Goku

During New York Comic Con, I was very lucky to get the chance to speak to some of the cast members of the Dragon Ball Super dub: Sean Schemmel (Goku), Jason Douglas (Beerus), Ian Sinclair (Whis) and Monica Rial (Bulma).

It was a really fun conversation with some of the most talented people in voice acting. One of the interesting aspects of the conversations was discussing how the voice actors who have spent huge amounts of emotional time embodying these characters expressing how they viewed them.

Toxic masculinity seems like it would be synonymous with DBZ, but really when you look at the original manga and the Japanese version you see that in the world of Dragon Ball the macho, hyper-masculine characters get their asses kicked by the sweet, goofy nice guy who fights for the fun of fighting, and the nobility of a good battle.

Basically, there is a lot of difference between the Goku we should have and the Goku we often get, some of that is from fan-response and projection. So I brought this up doing the interview when I asked what are some things that they feel fans misunderstand about their characters and Schemmel gave this really thoughtful response:

“The main thing that people misunderstand and I’ve been struggling with my entire career because when Funimation had taken the translations and written [Goku] more like an altruistic superhero that they thought American audiences would want. I can understand why they would wanna do that. Since Kai we’ve kept it closer to the Japanese and I’ve been struggling really hard to make it just like Akira Toriyama wants, which is on the record as saying: ‘Goku is not a typical altruistic hero, he likes fighting the strangers no matter what and if the Earth gets saved as a result of that, that’s interesting.’ So what I think people don’t understand is that he’s not a proud Saiyan Warrior like Vegeta, he’s beyond that.”

“There’s not this machismo with Goku, there is no ego and no narcissism. And so when I see lines that seem egoic— I had a really hard time with the “I am the hope of the universe” speech, because I was pretty confident it wasn’t accurate in Japanese and it seemed out of character for Goku to be standing above Freeza saying ‘I am the hope! I am so great’ and it was hard for me to sell as an actor. Ironically, fans seem to love it.”

I then brought up how in dubs, there is sometimes a need to Westernize values and cultural ideologies, as well as adding dialogue where there is none, in order to “sell” a moment. Schemmel brought up that in Super where there was an attempt to “macho up” Goku.

“We had a scene recently in Super where Goku has his finger at Goten and they had re-written ‘I’m gonna show this guy whose number one’ and I said uh-uh and checked the script and he’s not saying that, he just has his finger up! Goku does not give a shit and would never tell Goten ‘were gonna show him whose number one’ that is an egoic, narcissistic thing that Goku would never do. Vegeta might—“

Rial: “Vegeta would.”

For Schemmel, if it is powerful in Japan, it can be powerful here, and so he has been fighting throughout his career as Goku to allow the character to be the hero that Akira Toriyama wants him to be and is still doing to this day.

For me, one of the things I’ve always found antithetical to the show was how hyper-masculine the fandom would treat its main protagonist Goku. Despite all the times I myself riff on Goku, one of the things I’ve always loved about the character is how chaotically good he is.

Goku isn’t what you would call an altruistic person, but he doesn’t have malice in his heart, and there’s an innocence to him that I always found endearing. I remember watching the first ending to Super and watching it show Goku grow up from the little kid we see in Dragon Ball to a man with a wife, children, and a grandchild. It made me cry because I watched that adventure come to life.

Ian Sinclair brought up that the most powerful characters in the series aren’t always the bulky brutes. “If you look at how Toriyama made his power scales, smaller is always stronger. Tall skinny guy behind the big scary character … that’s the one who is stronger.”

Which is great for Jason Douglas, who has often been typecast as one type, to be able to play a sophisticated baddie who can be his King Lear. “For me, I’ve often been frustrated in this industry because I feel typecast by the way I physically look. ‘Oh bring Jason in on the big doddering character’, so it’s lovely to play a character who is both powerful and refined. Malice and levity and charm and comedic effect.”

Monica Rial, who plays my favorite character Bulma, also addressed how people really reduce what Bulma’s character has done for the series and how important she. “I built a time machine! […] She’s just a great role model for women and young girls. Here is this woman still in touch with her femininity and sexuality and at the same time she brilliant inventor, she’s a scientist, she’s rich and she’s got all these men afraid of her.”

I asked her if she feels the characters get due appreciation from fans:

“You have two schools of thought,” Rial explains. “You have the people who will write whole dissertations and papers about how Bulma is single-handedly responsible for the show of Dragon Ball and then you have those who are like ‘eh, she’s a girl.’ She is so integral to the plot […] she does it to help her friends and husband be stronger.”

Bulma is the perfect equivalent to balance out Goku and Vegeta. One of the things everyone loved about Super is the domestic drama and how it allows characters like Vegeta to show how much he cares about his family. “Unlike Goku,” Schemmel adds with a laugh.

Ian Sinclair mentioned his own personal theory that Whis is training Vegeta to be a destroyer and that Goku will eventually become a kai, which had my mind racing, but would also be very awesome. That would leave Beerus to become a baddie again, or as Rial put it “[become] the new Piccolo and be the babysitter”, possible a food critic for the New York Times. 

It was awesome to get to talk to them, and I felt so attached to Ian when he said: “I get to talk to the superheroes who I watched growing up as a kid,” which is how I felt talking to them, especially Sean Schemmel. It made me feel like Goku was there with me and that is a life goal for sure. Most of all it, reaffirmed why I never really believed that Dragon Ball was “for girls”—it is for everyone, because the universality of it, the characters and the values it talks about are for everyone.

Additionally, this sit-down was a reminder of the behind the scenes work these voice actors have done to bring this characters to life, of being the official English voices of the characters, but also fighting to have their characters be done justice by both them and the writing team.

“It’s been part of me almost half my life,” Schemmel said. “For me, it’s not just some fun thing I like, it’s my life.” For Schemmel, being Goku is like “the most comfortable pair of jeans” that helped be an anchor for him.

Goku is so wonderful and a great hero because of his sweet, dumb goodness and that makes him everyone’s anchor.

(image: Toei Animation)

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Things We Saw Today: Romcoms Are Officially Back and We Have the Streaming Numbers to Prove It

To All Of The Boys I've Loved Before, netflix, romcoms, crazy rich asians

Until recently, you’d be hard-pressed to argue that the Golden Age of romcoms wasn’t behind us by at least a couple of decades. For fans of the genre to find great movies, we often have to re-watch ones from the era of Meg Ryan and Julia Roberts. The last year, though–or even maybe just few months–has seen a surge in not just new romcoms, but great new romcoms. And it turns out, the ratings reflect that. According to Variety, more than 80 million Netflix subscribers watched at least one of the movies in its “Summer of Love” lineup. That includes To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before, Sierra Burgess Is a Loser, The Kissing Booth, Like Father, and Set It Up.

And that’s only on Netflix. That doesn’t include the great romcoms that have hit theaters this year, like Crazy Rich Asians or Love, Simon. These titles not only drew in huge audiences, but they were genuinely great movies that fortified the genre. I don’t want to give too much credit to one tweet from Chrissy Teigen, but I do firmly believe that more fans talking about their love of the genre and not burying it as a shameful “guilty pleasure” only leads to good things and good movies.

  • In the wake of so much horrible, dispiriting news, do you find yourself (frequently) asking “What are we supposed to do now?” Bitch has a podcast for you. (via Bitch)
  • Lin-Manuel Miranda wrote a poem for you, yes you. (via Vulture)
  • For many of us, October is the month to indulge in non-stop horror movie binges. But what if you don’t like the scary stuff? Or you’ve got kids in your life whom you don’t yet wish to traumatize? Here are the best Halloween movies available on Netflix, both the scary and the all-age-appropriate scary-adjacent. (via Pajiba)
  • I’m sorry, did someone say “feminist Black Mirror“? (via AV Club)
  • I’m sorry again, did someone else say “Gina Rodriguez, action star”? (via YouTube)
  • Rachel Gonzalez is an awesome young advocate for the Democratic Party. (You should probably be following her on Twitter.) Unfortunately, she’s encountered some seriously sexist BS on her path to becoming a political power player. (via Medium)
  • I was shocked by how much I loved Venom but I agree, it needed to do better by its female characters. (via SyFy.com)

Happy Tuesday, everybody! Enjoy your funky dystopian nightmare!


(image: Netflix)

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Sarah Palin Uses Her Own Son to Mock Protestors, Proves She’s a Really Terrible Person

Sarah Palin attends a GOP conference

Sarah Palin is not a good person, which is something that we’ve known since she burst onto the national stage in 2008. Since then, her career has been one cruelty after another, but her latest move might really take the cake.

She took to Instagram several days ago to post a meme that used her own son, who has Down syndrome, as a way to mock protestors who were fighting against the Kavanaugh hearing.

Her own son.

In the first picture displayed in the meme, women are scantily clad in gladiator gear, making battle-ready poses, supposedly how protesters see themselves. Below that is a triptych of pictures of Palin’s young son crying—how she thinks of them, intended as an insult.

People were rightfully enraged, and Instagram removed the photo. Palin then took to Instagram to do another heinous thing: compare her photo being taken down to lynching.

Palin’s comment reads:

CENSORSHIP is to sharing opinions as LYNCHING is to justice! Unbelievable. Instagram took down a post of my son Trig acting like a normal kid ~ which I am so proud he can do. My heart soars when Trig proves he’s a “normal” kid❣️I can’t even explain how it tickles our whole family. But the intolerant powers-that-be, sitting in a seat of judgement, think not? The nauseating, downright evil hypocrisy from their parent company, Facebook, continues ~ but only aimed at commonsense conservatives? When Obama was POTUS, he MOCKED children with Down Syndrome on late night tv, and nary a word of outrage from these same folks. But they’ll censor my post of my most favorite person in the world… Inexplicable.
Unbelievable.
And scary.
Facebook continues to censor traffic flow to my website, too.
Ummm, Zuckerberg, you were in Alaska recently.. did you not learn a thing about Mama Grizzlies when you visited?

Wow. She’s truly just an awful, awful person, first for the meme mocking female protestors who tried to stand up to Brett Kavanaugh’s nomination and using her own child to do so. Then there’s her response. No, this is not like lynching. Lynching refers to the brutal murders of Black citizens by white hate mobs. It’s a deeply racist statement to make, which is par for the course given Palin’s politics. Her insistence that these photos showed her son behaving like a quote “normal” kid is also deeply troubling and ableist.

Her comment about then-President Obama refers to an incident in which he compared his own bowling skills to the Special Olympics, which he later apologized for—a key difference that makes it a completely different situation. Both were ableist moments, but one led to a high-profile person apologizing, while the other was a woman using her differently abled son for political points and then deflecting with more ableism and hate when people rightfully called her out on her terrible behavior.

Her son deserves better than her using him as a “gotcha” against those pesky liberals.

(via Twitter, image: JASON CONNOLLY/AFP/Getty Images)

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Donald Trump Calls Stormy Daniels “Horseface” and This Is How We Live Now

stormy daniels trump horseface lawsuit

Over the last few years, Donald Trump has repeatedly insisted that he respects women. He says he “cherishes” them, he loves them, he respects them. He’s said he respects women more than Hillary Clinton, more than anyone, in fact, anyone at all. No one has ever respected women like Donald Trump respects women, according to Donald Trump.

How, exactly does he demonstrate his extreme, unprecedented respect for women? Well, in the past, he’s used number-based rankings to insult their looks, shamed a former beauty pageant winner for gaining weight, posted a meme insulting the appearance of his political opponent’s wife, and insinuated that women accusing him of sexual misconduct weren’t attractive enough to assault—just to name a few instances. Recently we saw him mock Christine Blasey Ford’s emotional and courageous public testimony in which she described the sexual assault she says she suffered as a teenager.

So it’s no surprise (although it is still disappointing and maddening) to see Trump refer to Stormy Daniels, whose defamation suit against the president was dismissed by a federal judge yesterday, as—and I can’t believe I have to type this out—”Horseface.”

Now, Trump slings personal insults and derisive nicknames at both men and women. But while his insults towards men tend to be about their IQ or their actions, his insults towards women are nearly always about their looks. (And sometimes also their IQ.) It’s why Rosie O’Donnell is a “fat pig” and a “slob,” why Mika Brzezinski had a bad face-lift, why Carly “look at that face!” Fiorina isn’t attractive enough to be President. All of these women criticized Trump’s actions or ideas, and he responds by criticizing their appearance. Because for men like Trump, calling a woman unattractive is the ultimate way to say they’re not worth listening to.

When Trump says he “respects women,” he means he tolerates (or even, yes, “cherishes” in a teetering pedestal sort of way) women who conform to his very specific ideas of what femininity is. Women must show him admiration, agree with him on all things, and above all, they must be physically attractive. In short, they should be Ivanka.

There are plenty of people who will call Trump’s insults toward Stormy Daniels a “distraction” from more important news. I don’t think the continuing misogyny demonstrated by the president of the United States or any politician or person in a major position of power should be dismissed as a distraction. It is worth noting, though, that because this is the Trump presidency, the news cycle is unending and there are a lot of other important stories that don’t have a trending hashtag. Our exhaustion is, after all, their greatest weapon.

(image: RALF HIRSCHBERGER/AFP/Getty Images)

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Chris Evans Strikes Back at Piers Morgan, Says Men Who Quantify Masculinity Are “Terrified on the Inside”

In a bid to try and make fun of Chris Evans—who pushed back against Piers Morgan’s bizarre assertion that carrying one’s child is emasculating—Piers Morgan made quite the claim.

If you haven’t been following along with the melodrama that is Piers Morgan throwing a fit about masculinity on Twitter, the media personality (who is famous for being obnoxious and possibly the world’s highest-paid troll) decided to go after Daniel Craig.

When a picture of the James Bond star emerged with Craig wearing a papoose and carrying around his new baby, Piers decided that a father carrying around his child “emasculated” him.

People who are not threatened by the act of a man carrying a child in a method designed to carry a child stood up for Craig. Many took to Twitter to defend men and their right to carry their children around. Which, when you spell it out like that, is just mind-boggling. But this is Piers Morgan and this is 2018, so we can’t be that surprised.

Because he is a good boy from Boston, Chris Evans, our increasingly real-life Captain America, decided to let Piers know how he felt about the situation.

Which led to an unsurprising and also rather uninspired comeback from Morgan:

So Piers Morgan tried to throw a dig at Chris Evans, but let’s break this down. Piers Morgan, who is now known for saying dumb things on the internet, decided to attack Chris Evans, the man who has embodied Steve Rogers for nearly a decade, by saying that Captain America wouldn’t wear a papoose.

A) That’s wrong; Steve Rogers definitely would wear a papoose and B) Is Chris Evans so perfect that the only thing Piers could throw back in his face was that a fictional character he plays wouldn’t, in the eyes of Piers Morgan, be a good father and supportive husband? That a man designed to fight Nazis would be afraid of utilizing a comfortable way of child-carrying?

To be quite honest, I’m more offended that anyone has the opinion that Captain America wouldn’t be the most supportive father and partner. He’s Steve Rogers. He literally started a civil war for his best friend.

And just why should Piers Morgan be any kind of authority on the topic of masculinity, anyway? Piers Morgan is a joke. Not that he was anything special before the 2016 election, but the fact that Piers spends his days on Twitter just trying to get a rise out of people shows the lack of excitement in his own life. Granted, you could say the same about me seeing as I am angrily typing out how Steve Rogers would most definitely wear a papoose, but I do that from a place of love.

At least we know, at the end of the day, that Chris Evans is a good guy, and we should take his response to Morgan as the last word on the subject of men being allowed to carry children without mockery.

(image: Marvel)

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5 Things I Want for Steven Moffat’s Dracula

during the BFI & Radio Times TV Festival at BFI Southbank on April 9, 2017 in London, England.

It was announced by Variety that from the minds that gave us Sherlock, the duo of Mark Gatiss and Steven Moffat, will be working on a Dracula adaptation for BBC and Netflix.

Appropriately it’ll be a period drama taking place in 1897, and revolve around the blood-drinking Count Dracula as he terrorizes the streets of Victorian London. In Sherlock fashion, it’ll three 90-minute episodes.  Look, y’all know how I feel about Moffat so I’m not going to sit here and feign excitement. That being said I love the book Dracula and I will absolutely be tuning in to see what this adaptation of the novel does.

Still, I am hoping, wishing, and praying that Moffat avoids some of the more cliche choices that have been made in bringing Dracula to life.

DRACULA -- "Come To Die" Episode 8 -- Pictured: Painting of Ilona -- (Photo by: David Lukacs/NBC)

(Credit: David Lukacs/NBC)

5) Mina is not Dracula’s reincarnated bride:

One of my biggest pet peeves, that has been revisited in multiple adaptations of the Dracula story, is this trope where Mina Harker is somehow the reincarnation Dracula’s dead wife from way back when. She is not, and this change has always annoyed me because it turns Mina into a romantic love interest to Dracula when she has zero interest in him, loves Jonathan, and her role in the book as being an example of the New Woman in British society doesn’t include vampire peen!

DRACULA -- "Let There Be Light" Episode 110 -- Pictured: Jonathan Rhys Meyers as Alexander Grayson -- (Photo by: Egon Endrenyi/NBC)

(Credit: Egon Endrenyi/NBC)

4) Dracula is ugly and old as intended:

Hot Dracula is a lie. When Dracula first appears in the novel, according to our sweet baby Jonathan Harker, as a thin old man, with a long white mustache, pointed ears, and sharp teeth. Yes, throughout the novel as he consumes more blood he gets younger, but younger does not mean hotter.

Dracula is at best a young rat-faced man who has no respect for consent or using safe words. The hot version of Dracula is the fault of media wanting to perpetuate their necrophilia agenda onto the world and I will not stand for it. Make Dracula a dusty old man with a unibrow, hair hands and with zero angst again.

DRACULA -- Episode 1-- Pictured: Katie McGrath as Lucy Westenra -- (Photo by: Jonathon Hession/NBC)

(Credit: Jonathon Hession/NBC)

3) Lucy isn’t slut-shamed and they play up the poly-queerness of her and her boys:

One of the fun things about Dracula is that while there are historically in line issues with the book, there are also some interesting progressive ideas. One of my favorite characters in the book is Lucy Westenra, the beautiful, innocent and sweet-natured friend of Mina (“friend”), who is romantically pursued by three suitors: Arthur Holmwood, moneybags, Quincey Morris, an American cowboy, and Dr. John Seward, the psychiatrist.

All three men love her and when Lucy is put under the thrall of Dracula one of the things the men do to try and save her is a blood transfusion where they inject their fluids into her. Subtext, thy name is Bram.

For some reason, because Lucy has multiple love interests, it is then read that she is the “sexy,” one when really she is an innocent character who just happens to get three marriage proposals in one day. Unlike a lot of love triangles, the men are all pretty chill and are happy loving Lucy, and promise to avenge her when she is turned into a vampire.

So don’t change that, please.

DRACULA -- Episode 1-- Pictured: Jonathan Rhys Meyers as Vlad Tepes -- (Photo by: Jonathon Hession/NBC)

(Credit: Jonathon Hession/NBC)

2) Dracula is not actually Vlad the Impaler:

Bram Stoker, bless his heart, didn’t do a whole lot of research about who Vlad III or Vlad the Impaler is. Dracula is from Transylvania and Vlad in real life was the medieval ruler of Wallachia, part of modern Romania. A lot of stories about Vlad have been historically exaggerated after his death to such a degree that we don’t really know how terrible he actually was as a ruler.

I mean, he was still pretty bad because he almost certainly impaled people and was seen as rigid and incorruptible, but to some people in Romania and in Romanian literature, Vlad is a heroic figure. Basically it is a was he a Book!Stannis or GOT!Stannis situation. However, if the story does decide to go the Dracula is Vlad route, it might be interesting if it uses that as a chance to explore the complicated history of the Romanian ruler.

DRACULA -- "From Darkness To Light" Episode 104 -- Pictured: Jessica De Gouw as Mina Murray -- (Photo by: Jonathon Hession/NBC)

1) Mina is treated as the true heroine of the series:

Mina in the books is an awesome, strong empowered character. She begins the story as a well-educated assistant schoolmistress. When Lucy ends up getting “sick” at first, it is Mina who keeps her from sleepwalking. Mina nurses Jonathan back to health, takes notes on Dracula and when is she attacked (coded as rape) by Dracula, she uses the psychic link between them to keep track of what Dracula is doing so they can defeat him.

Mina is the most level-headed character in the book and even though she at first mocks the “New Woman” movement, it is clear in her actions that Mina is absolutely a New Woman. Even her later book enthrallment by Dracula is a more a psychological issue that really tempts her because of the power it means she would have.

Mina Murry-Harker is a well-rounded female heroine who has so often been hyper damsel-ified for adaptation, and I hope that Moffat learns to walk the line between that and his usual “strong female character” brand:

What are your initial thoughts about upcoming Dracula series? What do you want to see and fear seeing?

(via Variety, image: Tabatha Fireman/Getty Images)

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