I feel like a lot more has been made in the past several decades out of Lucy asking “Why can’t they let a girl marry three men?” than of Lucy cutting off her letter twice due to crying fits over being unable to make three men happy.
I have a lot of Lucy related feelings though… and I tend to be irrationally protective of her as a character.
I was really into the goth thing for many years in my youth, but nowadays, not so much. I got into gyaru and pastels and a lot of other things and that great enemy of my youth, Natural Makeup, has become my slumber party friend now that I am an adult.
However, I still really dig all of the same stuff that I used to, and while I don’t really subscribe to the whole “you can be a goth without dressing goth!” thing it still kind of surprises me when I try to peek at goth things and people are still painting their faces white and wearing spider eyelashes and wine lipstick and that’s, like, it.
Whenever I go “aww man i wish I were still a goth” and think about the clothes I would wear, my mind kind of ends up in some kind of Edwardian-style 70s clothes. I’m always wanting to dress like a Hammer Horror heroine, and do my makeup accordingly.
Does anybody else think of their ideal goth look that way?
I certainly don’t do the white facepaint thing, though I do love dark red lipstick and black eyeliner. When I dress up, I tend to go for a victorian fairy princess look (and luckily, such clothes are easy to come by in San Francisco.) If I saw a girl dressed like a Hammer Horror heroine, I’d rush to complement her and ask where she got her outfit!
GENRE: s o u t h e r n g o t h i c
Characteristics: deeply flawed, disturbing or disorienting characters; decayed settings; grotesque imagery and situations; sinister events; violence, often for the sake of forcing a character to abandon their innocence.
Common Themes: poverty; racism and classism; alienation; the frailty of innocence.
I could have used this when I was writing my southern gothic Dracula AU.
well-written villains with tragic pasts (◕‿◕✿)
well-written villains who are bad just because they are bad (◕‿◕✿)
well-written villains with sympathetic motives (◕‿◕✿)
well-written villains with evil motives (◕‿◕✿)
well-written villains with a chance of redemption (◕‿◕✿)
well-written villains with no chance of redemption (◕‿◕✿)
well-written villains (◕‿◕✿)
Asked by kylemarffin
Thank you so much!
This is a long, weighty topic, and I won’t be able to do it justice here. Still, recent discussions on my and other blogs about this topic demand something at least slightly thought out, and I might as well start thinking. As my readers may know, I frequently extoll the virtues of gothic heroines who are strong enough to say no to the dark side, and despair of the many adaptations of Dracula which miss the point and turn the titular villain into a hero.
That said, I could not have devoted so much of my time to thinking and writing about monsters if I didn’t, on some level, find them kind of cool.
There’s a couple different levels to this. There are intentionally sympathetic villains (Frankenstein and his creature, Sweeney Todd, the Phantom of the Opera), irredeemable but charming villains (Mrs. Lovett, Hannibal Lecter, Steerpike) and villains whose darkness is itself the fascination (Dracula, Mr. Teatime, Lady Macbeth.) Attraction to the first two categories may be more easily understandable, but the third category still has its appeal.
Why? Well, several reasons. I don’t intend to go into a long discourse here about submissive urges, rape fantasies, or violence itself as a kink- I’m no sociology major, and I’d be here all day if I tried. (Though if crusherling ever ends up writing that piece about sadomasochism and villain-crushes, I’ll be the first to read it!) Instead, I’d like to talk about appropriate and ill-advised ways to go about romanticizing villains if we must- and to a certain extent, many of us do.
Let’s say you think that Dracula’s hair in Waxworks is a thing of beauty, and put aside your better judgement to imagine running your fingers through it. Or let’s say you’re a fan of classic Dark Shadows, and much as you don’t want Maggie to be brainwashed or murdered you still want Barnabas to hang around some more, threatening the lives of small children. Neither of these reactions are wrong, for the characters were created to be charismatic as they are evil, but even if they hadn’t been, there’s no rule against enjoying the presence of a character the author intended to be loathsome.
Feeling swept away by a commanding presence is very human, and strong evil can be much more glamorous on screen than in real life. So by all means, swoon over villains and don’t feel guilt over whether you’d want them in the real world. The problem, in my opinion, comes when enjoyment turns to excuses. When we wave away all the bad things villains do, or pretend they didn’t do it, this not only does a disservice to the story but to our own enjoyment- if villainy is the reason for our fondness in the first place, why do away with it? Why must filmakers insist on a noble, romantic Dracula when that character’s entire dark mystique comes from what a powerful figure of evil he is?
Let us enjoy our villains for what they are. This may mean examining their more sympathetic sides, glorying in their downfalls, wishing you could dance with them in a grand ballroom or that you were the one to shove a stake through their heart. Staying true to the characters is all that I urge- with that in mind, let’s continue to have fun with darkness.