a literary review
Searching for streaming entertainment to distract you from the inescapable suspicion that the gyre is widening and the center will not hold? Take your therapist off speed dial because after years of winks, nods, and good old boys, feminists have finally wrested control of entertainment from the patriarchy. Imagine, if you will, Sci Fi without the sexism; Magnum without the misogyny; reruns that aren’t so racist. Get ready to say goodbye to tired tropes and hello to empowered pop culture.
Critics are already divided but plenty excited about our anchor drama Ana of East LA, a reimagining of Anne of Green Gables created in conversation with our sisters casting off the generational yoke of colonialism. When assertive high school student Ana is bullied by Gilberto, instead of falling in love and reinforcing abusive tropes of sexually rewarding men who cannot accept confident women, she takes Gilberto to meet Antonio, who runs a drumming circle and a non-profit that helps men overcome anger and fear to become fully self-actualized. Ana does fall in love, but with Diana, a lesbian community organizer. Together they get up to adorable shenanigans waging guerilla warfare against white gentrifiers.
For Marxists, we have the next generation of Dynasty. The 80’s capitalist-propaganda fashion show will be rebooted, and rather than lionizing bourgeois white men who plunder the earth for profit, Legacy will feature an all-black cast addressing epigenetic trauma and reimagining art outside Western conventions. Acknowledging that powerful women were central to the original drama (as complicated as their fur and blood-diamond studded legacy may be), during sweeps week, Vanessa Williams and Angela Basset will square off in a multi-episode event so loaded with on-point critical theory that bell hooks will surely be moved to publish a response essay, threaded on Twitter under the hashtag #LegacyAwakened.
Feminists often wake at two in the morning for any number of reasons—worry about the imminent collapse of Western Civilization and whether that’s a good or bad thing; trying to remember what day of the week they’re supposed to bring cupcakes for Willow’s kindergarten class; or a roaring hot flash. Anchoring the all-important overnight will be Law and Order SVU, the only franchise that, though certainly problematic, also centers women’s sexual trauma as a serious societal ill. Weekends and worker holidays will feature specially-curated Golden Girls marathons hosted by on-point RuPaul drag artist alumni as all four original cast members.
Sapphists will be sure to smile weeknights 8/7 Central at Who’s the Boss, Anyway? a re-airing of the original sitcom with voice-over commentary from Hannah Hart of My Drunk Kitchen and original Boss star Judith Light. Hart will keep you laughing with one-liners focused on Tony’s cooking and Mona’s martinis, while Light will just say whatever the hell she wants because a voice like that is made for speaking (hilarious) truth. Where Alyssa Milano treads, trouble is sure to follow and we’re doubling down on the opportunity to dialog. The Anyway series debut will feature special guest commentator Rose McGowan, Milano’s equally problematic co-star from the white-feminist, lesbian-baiting juggernaut Charmed. Who says feminism can’t be fun?
Game of Thrones will be reimagined as Game of History, a sweeping alt-reality fantasy (not high fantasy, which is code for racist), epic saga chronicling the rise of indigenous peoples in Africa, South and North America, and Southeast Asia ascending and ultimately uniting to defeat the white colonizers. A groundbreaking new approach to entertainment pioneered by our writers that we’re tentatively calling “talent,” ensures that no woman is raped during the entire series, not even to advance a man’s emotional arc. Danai Gurira will anchor the franchise, representing Wakanda, which through a peacefully brokered multi-lateral consensus represents the African diaspora. We believe in change but let’s not get carried away—there will still be dragons.
Last but not least, get ready for Fa La La La Feminism. With decades of clichéd ground to re-write, we’re going big with our half-year long, body-positive, non-denominational extravaganza featuring all the Christmas movie tropes you’ve come to love, corrected to de-center heteronormativity and re-center celebrants of multiple faiths. The lineup, comprised entirely by gender non-binary leads of color, kicks off with Thanksgiving is a Celebration of Genocide, Charlie Brown; Deck the Halls with Pagan Rituals; It Happened One Protest; A Chinese New Year to Remember; and concludes throughout spring with Love at the Passover Seder and Romance at Ramadan.
#MeToo opened the door and we’re seizing the Selma Hayek-inspired moment because the patriarchy has proven time and again that we can’t have nice things—unless it’s must-see TV written and produced by feminists.
Amy Drayer grew up a free-range kid on a charming island in the Pacific Northwest, then wandered south to attend Scripps College in California. She later moved to Washington, D.C. where she worked in politics as long as humanly possible. Now in Denver, Colorado, with her wife, Amy is a graduate of the inimitable Lighthouse Writers Workshop Book Project and an active member of Rocky Mountain Fiction Writers and Sisters in Crime. Learn more about her work at MakahIslandMysteries.com.