For the last few days we’ve been discussing female aliens with guest blogger, Thomas Evans of the The Archaeologist’s Guide to the Galaxy.
So put this all together and what do you get?
Well, basically, to have an appealing character of any sorts, you need someone with both a soft side and a hard side. You must have a caring nurturing type who can also kick ass, a leader who still needs others. A woman (in the most general sense at least) whose approval must be earned, a maternal type that in no way resembles one’s own mother. Put the some blatantly displayed sexual attributes on it and you have an appealing female. Add some aspect of the different whose presence illustrates what it is to be female, and you have the ideal alien female.
Thus, using this logic, my vote for most appealing female alien must be:
She’s hard on the outside and soft on the inside (to the point of having a carapace over somewhat juicy organs). And talk about blatant display of sexuality? We see her reproductive organs displayed by a camera pan! She’s tough as nails, has acid for blood, is a leader whose followers do what she says without question, and is deadlier than any of her male (well, I think they were male) drones were. She is ruthless, but cares for her young lovingly and protects them with her last breath. What is more, in the end, the protagonist of the film (Ripley) must prove herself to the Alien Queen (okay, it by killing her in a one-to-one fight), and in so doing, the Queen gives her a gift to take away with her. One of her own beloved children no less.
To that end, she is BOTH a Maple Syrup Candy AND a Tootsie Roll. Brilliant! What’s more, she’s naked in every scene she’s in, and when we first see her, she’s strapped in place as surely as if she was tied up. Not only that, she get’s herself loose (no need for help from a man), and goes barehanded against a gun-toting, robot wearing Ripley.
But seriously, what I personally found most appealing this character is she is not simply a sex object with some makeup to make her look a bit alien. She is truly alien, and yet still creates a dynamic by which we examine our own humanity. Indeed, as a counter-point to our protagonists. She is the key dynamic that illustrates both Ripley’s humanity in general and femininity in particular. To that end, she holds great appeal as a character despite the fact she doesn’t look good in a bikini.
Thanks, Thomas, for a great, surprising, and entertaining look at female aliens!
19 thoughts on “Guest Post: A Surprising Pick for Best Female Alien”
Glad you liked it!
I totally agree. That would’ve been my choice too.
She did totally rock and made for one of the best female vs. female end conflicts on screen. To that end, it is one of the best end conflicts on screen regardless of any gender commentary.
I’m sooo happy people agree!
Haha, so I’m guessing the opposite sort of alien queen is well, the Borg Queen from Star Trek?
(love your blog by the way)
I thought of her, but wasn’t sure if she really qualified as alien. Besides, she typified an almost cliche female antagonist.
My, but you have some lovely old SciFi covers on your blog. Thanks for visiting and adding to the conversation. You picked a good day. It is always a treat to get Thomas’ take on things.
Oh he’s got some brilliant reviews of classic SciFi novels and movies in general. Many of the novels he covers are brilliant (or aweful) oldies that one should be aware of (one way or the other) and he covers movies that one won’t hear of elsewhere. Great site.
Thanks for the kind words Charlie and Thomas!
Speaking of covers — I’ve found the WORST sci-fi cover ever…. so far…. I’ve submitted it to Good Show Sir so hopefully he’ll post it soon…. He posted one of mine just a few days ago so it might be a while.
Warning: it’s absolutely terrible — I desperately want to know what the book is about.
AAAACCCCKKK!!! I have to read that book! If even just for the portrayal of women on the cover…(Naked, chains, and a SHARK!?!!!?!!!) That might even trump a big gun for gender based sexuality statments. Add the title in there and… well… I speachless.
A shark WITH legs… I can’t find anything written about the book online — like most things I review/read, so, maybe I’ll procure a copy.
So.. does that make it a Land Shark? When they make the movie they’d have to cast Chevy Chase.
You know, I was just about to make mention of that… but then, for some odd reason, thought better of it.
So… um… I didn’t see any of the Alien movies. Does that mean I’m banned from SGLSF?
No. That means I get to tie you to the sofa and make you watch one. 😉
I think it means that you have somehow managed to skirt around an enormous media gravity well.
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