Music Tonight: Wednesday, March 8


Sometime in the 1980s, cartoonist Alison Bechdel, in her seminal strip Dykes to Watch Out For, developed a process that became known as the Bechdel Test as a means of evaluating female representation in film. The test is simple, with only three rules: The film must have at least two women; they must interact and talk to each other; and they must talk about any subject other than a man. In the very strip where this concept was first introduced, one of the characters mentions that the last film she had seen was Ridley Scott’s Alien. Which is interesting, as a
strong argument can be made that James Cameron’s action film sequel, Aliens, passes the test far better than almost any other blockbuster from that indelicate decade of action star cavemen. Even disregarding any dialogue shared by the hero Ellen Ripley and either Space Marine Private Vasquez or Newt, the colony child who is rescued from the nightmare on exomoon LV-426, Ripley’s famous line directed at the alien queen, “Get away from her, you bitch!” and the antagonist’s nonverbal responding snarl still passes under the test’s metrics. Anyway, I love this
film and am tickled by the opportunity to see it on the big screen at the Arcata Theatre Lounge for Sci-fi Night. Six p.m. is the hour of the pre-show raffle and $5 will get you in the door, $9 if you want to go home with a poster. Viva.


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