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  • The Women of Supernatural

    Meant WOMEN on the poll

    So, I've been reading a lot of internet buzz about the new addition of woman in season three. I've notice a lot of people didn’t like the fact that they added two main woman characters. Some people said that it should have stayed just Dean and Sam, and that's it. What are your guy's thought about this?

    I like the woman's touch in season three. I enjoyed Bella and Ruby. They were awesome characters with awesome history and storylines. I think the reason why Supernatural has so many woman guess stars is because the lack of woman in the series. "TOO MUCH TESTOSTERONE!" Which I dont think so.

    YOUR THOUGHTS?
    14
    Yes!
    64.29%
    9
    No
    14.29%
    2
    Didn't really care.
    21.43%
    3
    Last edited by Dark Ages; 04-09-08, 05:14 PM.
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  • #2
    Rar. I loved Ruby but didn't like Bella as much - I enjoyed Bella at first but she got a bit repetitive after a while, and her storyline wasn't exactly awesome. So, Yes to Ruby, no to Bella.... but you don't have an option for that,

    SJ
    xox
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    • #3
      What SayJay said...

      I think that given a full season Bella's story may have been better, but as it stands I didn't think she was great.

      I have no problem with women being a part of the story, as long as they're not pushed in there - which is how Bella came off. Jo was pushed in as a possible love interst in S2 and that didn't work, Bella was an antagonist in S3 and that worked better but still not quite, but they got it spot on with Ruby. There's a good story with her and she fits with the universe - getting involved with the brothers journey, but not "riding around in the back of the Impala as a girlfriend" kind way.

      I so totally don't agree that there's too much testosterone. It's a story about two brothers who live a kinda western-style lifstyle, so it would be a manly way to live - girls don't naturally fit very well.

      It's strange that as a guy you want to see more women in there - I thought it was the women who wanted ships and clothes and girly stuff in their shows. I mean, I understand the need for eye-candy (which us girls have in spades with Jensen and Jared) but fast cars, guns and fighting - sounds like a male TV dream!
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      • #4
        Whether I like a character or not, female or male, always depends on if that character works within the confines of the story created by Supernatural. It's a road show, the characters are always on the move, so recurring stationary character don't work well with the concept. That was one of the downfalls of the Roadhouse in S2. It's a show with arcs: almost every episode either develops the character arcs of Sam and Dean or the mytharc, so most characters only work if they have a function in either the mytharc or the character arcs, otherwise there?s no reason for them to regularly show up in the show.

        That's one of the reasons why most recurring characters only show up for 2-4 episodes per season. Like Henriksen, who only shows up in episodes that deal with the FBI or Gordon, who only appears in episodes that refer to the subplot of the Winchesters vs the Hunter community and even Bobby, who is the only regular character on the show, is rarely in more than half a dozen episodes. Supernatural's story is solely focused on the Winchester brothers and any given character on the show needs to have some sort of link to them or they drift directionless. Recurring characters don't have a life of their own in the show, like they have in ensemble shows, where side characters have own stories and subplots. That's just not possible with SN's structure of storytelling.

        When it comes to Bela and Ruby we see this very clearly: Ruby had a function in the mytharc and in Sam's character arc for S3, hence her appearance in mytharc/Sam episodes was naturally justified. Her being a demon and on the move, also worked well with the concept. Bela on the other hand was a character that had no link to the Winchester story and hence most of her appearances were contrived. There was no internal logic or need for her appearances in RSAM, Fresh Blood or DALDOM and so the writers needed to make reasons up on why she suddenly was in the story and mostly failed spectacularly, not only doing Bela's character a disservice, but also the Winchesters.

        So, no, I wasn't a huge fan of Bela and to be honest of Ruby either, although that was more because of a lack of forward movement with the character rather than that she didn't fit. My reaction to these characters would've been the same though if they had been male.

        In general: I don't think the show needs women as main characters to be honest. On the contrary, the lack of women in the life of the Winchesters is one central motif in the story. Supernatural explores the world from a male perspective in which the absence of females serves as a symbol for loss and dysfunction and in which the male members of the family are forced to take over roles that are typically associated with females, without loosing their male identification. Sam and Dean act as caretakers, nurturing and comforting each other, providing emotional support and balance in their own unique form of male communication. That's one of the main aspects of the show and most fans that I know love this particular motif and fear that it would be weakened with the insertion of females, especially as love interests.

        That's one reason why there's usually a lot of resistance against recurring female characters in fandom. The exception being maternal characters like Ellen because it's interesting to see the boys react to a mother figure. Plus it has to be said that I think the writers usually have a better grip on male characters than on female characters. They are usually better written and have more depth.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by ciderdrinker View Post
          What SayJay said...


          I so totally don't agree that there's too much testosterone. It's a story about two brothers who live a kinda western-style lifstyle, so it would be a manly way to live - girls don't naturally fit very well.

          It's strange that as a guy you want to see more women in there - I thought it was the women who wanted ships and clothes and girly stuff in their shows. I mean, I understand the need for eye-candy (which us girls have in spades with Jensen and Jared) but fast cars, guns and fighting - sounds like a male TV dream!
          Well I was joking when i stated there was too much testosterone. Thats why I put it in caps and a lol thingy. I was just saying that because that's how the internet people put it out as. I like the show the way it is. I just think there was nothing wrong with Bella or Ruby! They brought something exciting to the screen.

          And if I didnt like the "too much testoterone" What does my sex have to do with anything??? If I didnt like it I just didin't.
          Last edited by Dark Ages; 04-09-08, 09:25 PM.
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          • #6
            I voted yes. If only because I like to see a revolving door of characters that tend to reappear every so often. To me, it gives the show more grounding. The brothers are great, of course. And you cannot deny the awesomeness that is Bobby (who I just realized the other day was on Deadwood...I knew he looked familiar! ) But I like to see some other characters popping in every once and awhile. The show has that, I know, but Ruby and Bella had a larger stake in the mythos of season three.

            In retrospect, I could have probably voted for "didn't really care."
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            • #7
              Originally posted by Jenni Lou View Post
              I voted yes. If only because I like to see a revolving door of characters that tend to reappear every so often. To me, it gives the show more grounding.
              I agree with that! I think that reappearing characters give a feel of steadiness and allow the viewer to bond even more deeply with the show; it creates a rich universe. The structure of the show doesn't lend itself to many recurring roles with characters that pop up for every 2-3 episodes though. I like the show's approach to use characters roughly twice the season and only giving them more space if it makes sense within the story (John, Bobby, Ruby). It's too bad that a lot of characters are only in the show for one season though .. Meg & John in S1, Jo, Ellen, Ash in S2 and Ruby & Bela in S3, instead of introducing new characters each season, I would have preferred to slowly build up the already existing one's. Of course it's okay that a character is killed if the story demands it, but SN sometimes has too much fun killing all of them off!

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              • #8
                Originally posted by galathea View Post
                Of course it's okay that a character is killed if the story demands it, but SN sometimes has too much fun killing all of them off!
                Too true!

                I also suspect that the behind-the-scenes dealing of making a series prevent them from bringing back guest stars over the course of the entire series. People get other work and offers and whatnot... But it truly does make for not only a richer universe, but a more believable one as well. Doing what they do, the brothers are inevitably going to be running into some familiar faces. Especially since they are knee-deep and personally invested in it the way they are!
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                • #9
                  Originally posted by Jenni Lou View Post
                  Too true!

                  I also suspect that the behind-the-scenes dealing of making a series prevent them from bringing back guest stars over the course of the entire series. People get other work and offers and whatnot... But it truly does make for not only a richer universe, but a more believable one as well. Doing what they do, the brothers are inevitably going to be running into some familiar faces. Especially since they are knee-deep and personally invested in it the way they are!
                  Oh, definitely .. for example Gordon and Henriksen were killed off because the actors weren't available anymore, Jeffrey Dean Morgan would show up more often, but his thriving movie career prevents that and Ellen would have shown up more but they didn't get the actress to sign a new contract. It's difficult for a show that can't offer their recurring actors more than 1-3 episodes per season, which of course isn't too appealing for actors, after all they need to live as well LOL. That was why Cohan and Cassidy were offered recurring regular status in the first place, but in the end the strain on the budget doesn't allow for that kind of contracts.

                  Sometimes I think they also want to reinforce the theme of the Winchesters being outcast not only from normal society but also from the communities that they would fit in more naturally, like the hunters and therefore they keep them in isolation or only create more antagonistic characters. So Sam and Dean are forced to only rely on themselves, emphasising the theme of family being the only thing you can always count on.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by galathea View Post
                    I agree with that! I think that reappearing characters give a feel of steadiness and allow the viewer to bond even more deeply with the show; it creates a rich universe. The structure of the show doesn't lend itself to many recurring roles with characters that pop up for every 2-3 episodes though. I like the show's approach to use characters roughly twice the season and only giving them more space if it makes sense within the story (John, Bobby, Ruby). It's too bad that a lot of characters are only in the show for one season though .. Meg & John in S1, Jo, Ellen, Ash in S2 and Ruby & Bela in S3, instead of introducing new characters each season, I would have preferred to slowly build up the already existing one's. Of course it's okay that a character is killed if the story demands it, but SN sometimes has too much fun killing all of them off!
                    I agree with you 100%! I think that they do get new returning characters every season, and it makes me mad because you don't get to know the characters on the level you want. Like with Jo and Ellen. I miss them and I want to see where they're in their lives. Hopefully they make an appearance in S4.

                    People keep saying that Bella had no big role in SN. I think the whole budget cut thing had a lot to do witt that. I think they had something planned for her, but couldn't follow through because of the money. Her death to me seemed abrupt. So, that's why I think that.
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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Dark Ages View Post
                      I agree with you 100%! I think that they do get new returning characters every season, and it makes me mad because you don’t get to know the characters on the level you want. Like with Jo and Ellen. I miss them and I want to see where they’re in their lives. Hopefully they make an appearance in S4.

                      People keep saying that Bella had no big role in SN. I think the whole budget cut thing had a lot to do witt that. I think they had something planned for her, but couldn’t follow through because of the money. Her death to me seemed abrupt. So, that’s why I think that.
                      As I said before, it's not always in Kripke's hands because they wanted Ellen in S3 but Samantha Ferris declined their offer.

                      Bela had no function in the overall story for S3. That wasn't a problem of money but of storytelling. Bela was never intended to be a recurring character in the first place. She was a one-shot character for Bad Day At Black Rock. It was the network who asked Kripke to add another recurring female character besides Ruby and since Bela was already written for BDABR they settled on her and expanded her role. Since the season was already mapped out they didn't find a good way to incorporate her character retroactively though and that shows in the writing. Even Kripke said that they did the character a disservice. That they killed her off had multiple reasons, one of which was the cut in the budget for S4, they couldn't hold the actress.
                      Last edited by galathea; 04-09-08, 09:57 PM.

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by galathea View Post
                        As I said before, it's not always in Kripke's hands because they wanted Ellen in S3 but Samantha Ferris declined their offer.

                        Bela had no function in the overall story for S3. That wasn't a problem of money but of storytelling. Bela was never intended to be a recurring character in the first place. She was a one-shot character for Bad Day At Black Rock. It was the network who asked Kripke to add another recurring female character besides Ruby and since Bela was already written for BDABR they settled on her and expanded her role. Since the season was already mapped out they didn't find a good way to incorporate her character retroactively though and that shows in the writing. Even Kripke said that they did the character a disservice. That they killed her off had multiple reasons, one of which was the cut in the budget for S4, they couldn't hold the actress.

                        Oh!! Well, okay! Thanks for explaining that to me. I theory was wrong. I guess I have to do my home work. Well, I really liked Bela I wished they would have shown a other side of her. But thanks alot for explaining that for me, about the budget cuts and such!
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                        • #13
                          I've just had a complete re-watch of season three, and one thing that struck me throughout was how much I really wished I liked the new characters more than I do, Bela especially. Going into the season, I really wanted the two new characters to be a success, for them to fit in with ongoing storylines and be the kind of character that viewers could feel really invested in. On the whole, though, I never quite felt that they worked, Bela especially, but I never felt attached to Ruby, either.

                          Ruby worked better than Bela, for reasons already stated in this thread. She was tied to the mytharc from the start, and it made perfect sense that the boys would run into her over and over, because a) she's stalking Sam and working very hard to win his trust, and b) she's a demon and can clearly travel wherever she wants to, seemingly in the blink of an eye.

                          Where Ruby falls down for me is how little progression we saw with the character. We knew from her earliest appearances that she was a demon, that she was interested in Sam, that she was using Dean's situation as a means of gaining influence over Sam...and at the end of the season we still pretty much only knew those bare facts about her (plus the origin story, but that wasn't exactly enlightening with regard to who she is now). To feel truly invested in a character, whether hero or antagonist, viewers need to feel they understand what makes them tick, what their motivations and ambitions are to make them behave the way they do. Ruby's intentions remained an enigma right up to the end of the season, and yeah, a degree of mystery is a good thing, but it would have been good to feel that we'd learned at least something more, if not the full story. I really hope we learn more about her plans and ambitions next season, or her whole storyline will feel like a waste.

                          With Bela, this problem was even more accentuated because she had no connection to ongoing storylines whatsoever and, unlike more successful antagonists such as Gordon or Henriksen, had no reason to repeatedly cross paths with the Winchesters. But, having said that, although she was shoehorned into stories that didn't need her the show mostly could have got away with it, for the first half of the season especially, if only there had been something about the character for viewers to feel invested in.

                          I do understand the cleft stick the writers were in - one of those situations where they were damned if they did and damned if they didn't. They didn't want to give this character too much in-depth development too early for fear the fans would overreact to so much focus on a non-Winchester, so instead they kept up the air of mystery. And I do really, really appreciate about the character that she never made excuses for who she was - she never 'fessed up her life story to the brothers as explanation for the way she behaved. But I do think that viewers needed to understand more of her inner workings to really feel invested in her as a regular recurring character.

                          Gordon and Henriksen are good examples again - they were both misguided antagonists who made life hell for the Winchesters, but right from the start viewers were able to completely understand why they did the things they did. Henriksen was just doing his job, operating from a position of ignorance. Gordon was completely psycho and believed, absolutely, that he was doing the right thing. They were both wrong about the brothers, but their motivations were clear, and that was what made their appearances so interesting. That and the fact that they were never overused.

                          So, yeah. I needed to understand Bela better to appreciate her as a character. As it was, she just kept randomly popping up being supremely self-serving, greedy and downright evil for no apparent reason whatsoever. A demon could get away with that, but a human character I need to know better in order to care about. She just didn't have enough redeeming features to interest me as a recurring character, and I do regret that.

                          Overall, Bela's whole arc could have been easily achieved in just three appearances: one to establish the character, one to steal the Colt, and then one to die.

                          Really, though, the show isn't great at writing female characters, and even worse at creating characters that last longer than one season! I do feel it would add a lot to the universe if there was a bit more continuity of fringe character. It wouldn't even require getting hold of the actors - with Samantha Ferris not willing to commit herself to random guest episodes too far in advance and therefore unavailable last season, Ellen could have at least been referred, even if just once, to remind us that she exists and remains an ally. And although Kripke said after season two that Jo's story was done, I've always felt that they abandoned the character just at the point where it would finally make sense for her to hook up with the brothers on occasion. After all, she's a rookie hunter out there on her own with no backup - she is going to run into situations that she doesn't know how to handle, and respect for the character would grow if she showed she was mature enough to ask for help when she needs it. Plus, it could be interesting to see her interacting with Sam after the events of BUABS, tying up loose threads there, and to see her working with Dean again having given up her crush on him. But maybe she has enough contacts of her own from the Roadhouse to not need to call on the brothers after their thorny relations during the season... But still, it would have been good to see or hear from her at least once during the season. Or to hear a mention of one or two of John's old contacts, mentioned in season one - they didn't all end the season dead!

                          Anyway, that's my two penn'orth.

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by galathea View Post
                            As I said before, it's not always in Kripke's hands because they wanted Ellen in S3 but Samantha Ferris declined their offer.
                            Hey hun,

                            that's not atually what happened. Sorry, had to point this out. But, Sam Ferris' words were "the CW rammed those two girls down Kripke's throat". According to her, she had really wanted to come back into S3, Kripke had told her a lot about her backstory and she didn't ant to tell anyone about it as she is still hoping to come back into Supernatural S4 to get her story actually told. She said that Krike had always planned to bring her back to S3 but couldn't work her story in when he had to have Ruby & Bella in so many episodes.

                            Sam told me that the CW is all about 'young and pretty' and that they weren't pshing to get Ellen written back into the story - they were happy to have her out of the picture since she didn't fit their usual "image".

                            On top of which Sam told me all about a night that she had, had a few too many wines and actually emailed Kripke to moan at him, and told him to "not get pushed aroundby the idiots at CW and to write Ellen back in" and she told me about how she'd woke up the next day and re-read everything she said, and had to laugh at it.

                            From what Sam told me, I got the impression that yeah, it wasn't in Kripke's hands, but it was the decision of the CW to have Ruby & Bella around instead of Ellen.

                            But Sam is hoping to go back and do S4, when I spoke to her in May she said that she regretted not being a part of S3, but that she wanted to go back so that they can do more of her 'story' and let people see where she ended up.

                            Rar. Sorry, had to add that.

                            SJ
                            xox
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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by slaycandy View Post
                              that's not atually what happened. Sorry, had to point this out. But, Sam Ferris' words were "the CW rammed those two girls down Kripke's throat". According to her, she had really wanted to come back into S3, Kripke had told her a lot about her backstory and she didn't ant to tell anyone about it as she is still hoping to come back into Supernatural S4 to get her story actually told. She said that Krike had always planned to bring her back to S3 but couldn't work her story in when he had to have Ruby & Bella in so many episodes.

                              Sam told me that the CW is all about 'young and pretty' and that they weren't pshing to get Ellen written back into the story - they were happy to have her out of the picture since she didn't fit their usual "image".

                              On top of which Sam told me all about a night that she had, had a few too many wines and actually emailed Kripke to moan at him, and told him to "not get pushed aroundby the idiots at CW and to write Ellen back in" and she told me about how she'd woke up the next day and re-read everything she said, and had to laugh at it.

                              From what Sam told me, I got the impression that yeah, it wasn't in Kripke's hands, but it was the decision of the CW to have Ruby & Bella around instead of Ellen.

                              But Sam is hoping to go back and do S4, when I spoke to her in May she said that she regretted not being a part of S3, but that she wanted to go back so that they can do more of her 'story' and let people see where she ended up.
                              Yeah, I don't doubt all that is true - it is pretty clear that it was the CW who wanted hot chicks, rather than the writers, so there is clearly a lot of hard negotiation going on behind the scenes.

                              However, part of the reason Ellen wasn't in S3 is down to Sam Ferris herself. She has said as much on her blog - the writers needed her to commit herself to a guest appearance about 3 months in advance, so they could write the story knowing for sure that she is available, but she was reluctant to commit herself to random episodes of anything so far in advance, so it didn't happen.

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                              • #16
                                Originally posted by Llywela View Post
                                Yeah, I don't doubt all that is true - it is pretty clear that it was the CW who wanted hot chicks, rather than the writers, so there is clearly a lot of hard negotiation going on behind the scenes.

                                However, part of the reason Ellen wasn't in S3 is down to Sam Ferris herself. She has said as much on her blog - the writers needed her to commit herself to a guest appearance about 3 months in advance, so they could write the story knowing for sure that she is available, but she was reluctant to commit herself to random episodes of anything so far in advance, so it didn't happen.
                                Well I'm just stating what Sam Ferris told me back in May. I posted it under one of the SPN threads at the time... but she did say that they had asked her to do an episode, but Kripke couldn't fit her story around the Bella & Ruby stories that he had to do.

                                SJ
                                xox
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                                • #17
                                  You always have such cool inside info, SJ and appreciate you sharing it. That sounded like a cool conversation. And I hope we get to Ellen again because as I wrote earlier, I definitely like when the SPNverse goes back to (what someone referred to earlier as) fringe characters.
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                                  • #18
                                    Originally posted by slaycandy View Post
                                    Well I'm just stating what Sam Ferris told me back in May. I posted it under one of the SPN threads at the time... but she did say that they had asked her to do an episode, but Kripke couldn't fit her story around the Bella & Ruby stories that he had to do.
                                    It did all get very...crowded and rushed there, with the repurcussions of the strike, alas. That's another reason it is hard to assess Ruby and Bela properly, as we will never know how much of a difference those missing episodes might have made to their stories.

                                    The writers were hoping to have Ellen for an episode in the second half of the season, as far as I know, and Sam Ferris posted on her blog at the time that she couldn't commit to it far enough in advance for it to go ahead. As I recall, those negotiations were going on at around about the time of the strike - I think it was around January she made the post? Then once the show was back in production, it is probably safe to say that there definitely wasn't room in those four episodes for Ellen as well as everything else. It is certainly safe to say that it was the girls that pushed Ellen out of the spot she had occupied the previous season.

                                    I still think she should have at least been referred to much earlier in the season, back at the beginning, since the first episode was set only a week after we'd seen her in the S2 finale!

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                                    • #19
                                      Originally posted by slaycandy View Post
                                      Well I'm just stating what Sam Ferris told me back in May. I posted it under one of the SPN threads at the time... but she did say that they had asked her to do an episode, but Kripke couldn't fit her story around the Bella & Ruby stories that he had to do.

                                      SJ
                                      xox
                                      Well, Jo already mentioned that Samantha Ferris wrote it herself in her blog that she didn't want to commit too much in advance. I also remember distinctly that Kripke said they had written her in for the finale episode, but Sam did decline the offer. Maybe that was after you saw her, dunno. I have no doubt that the problem with Ellen showing up over the course of the season was related to the fact that they had to press for Ruby and Bela's appearances, which is a real shame, but Ellen not appearing in the finale was definitely Sam's choice.

                                      Edit:

                                      Here is what Kripke said in his interview with Eclipse Magazin in April 08

                                      I love Samantha [Ferris] and I’ll be completely honest and say that I actually don’t know. I’m not entirely optimistic at this point. She was supposed to be in the season finale for this year. Unfortunately, we made an offer — we made the offer we usually make — and she passed, so we had to re-write it without her in it. We wanted to. We tried. But I don’t know if it’s going to work out because of business reasons.
                                      Last edited by galathea; 05-09-08, 07:19 PM.

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                                      • #20
                                        I imagine that both are true - that the new girls were the reason Ellen's role in the show had to be pushed aside in the first instance. After all, we all know how tight the budget for the show is, and how many subplots were crammed into last season. So then when Sam was asked to return for just one episode, late in the season, she didn't feel able to commit herself to it so far in advance, when it was just one episode with no guarantee of anything more - she said in her blog that it would be professional suicide. She needed to stay available for any better offers.

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