Feminism, Lost in Space

Kristin Devine

Kristin has humbly retired as Ordinary Times' friendly neighborhood political whipping girl to focus on culture and gender issues. She lives in a wildlife refuge in rural Washington state with too many children and way too many animals. There's also a blog which most people would very much disapprove of https://atomicfeminist.com/

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15 Responses

  1. Oscar Gordon says:

    Ok, fine, I’ll finish watching the first season!Report

  2. LeeEsq says:

    I always took that Dr. Smith was so psychologically messed up that she couldn’t help biting the hand that fed her. She is not a mentally healthy or stable individual. Therefore, it makes sense that this criminally insane woman would keep doing what she was doing.

    Lost in Space was surprisingly slow moving for a show aimed at the entire family. I’d figure kids would want something a bit more fast passed. It was really something of an adult drama that happened to unusually feature kid actors. I think the writers wanted to stay kind of close to the spirit of the original but do a lot of updates for the modern family and cut down on the camp, which is why Dr. Smith is more menacing as a villain in this version. This, and the need to diversify the cast, is why Judy is John’s adopted child. What I really didn’t see the need for is turning Don into some type of lovable rogue but I guess they thought when by the books military man was enough.Report

    • atomickristin in reply to LeeEsq says:

      I totally agree about Don although I cut that paragraph from my piece because it didn’t flow.

      I am SO OVER making like 95% of any male leads into morally sketchy Hansoloian criminals-lite. What’s wrong with just a guy who shows up to do a job and isn’t a smuggler/conman type?Report

  3. jwop says:

    I am increasingly irritated that there is no family-friendly sci-fi/fantasy that i can watch with my kids. Not everyone is watching shows by themselves in the dark, okay?

    and that goes for podcasts too which have abandoned decency standards, either because they don’t believe in those standards or because they don’t feel they have to abide by them. but when I can’t listen to a podcast on the stereo because the kids might here Brookings Institution/Lawfare cuss over there air… do they realize that they are shooting themselves in the foot?Report

    • atomickristin in reply to jwop says:

      Exactly. We often just end up watching reruns of Star Trek because everything else is pushing the envelope so far it goes right off the edge of the table.Report

      • bookdragon in reply to atomickristin says:

        It’s not exactly scifi, but The Librarians is good and something you can watch with kids.

        Frankly, I think Dr Who is pretty family friendly too (though the Weeping Angels episodes should be skipped for young kids prone to nightmares).Report

  4. bookdragon says:

    I did not even know about this, which given how much of a geek I am, is really saying something.

    Granted, I don’t have Netflix, but I’ve generally seen trailers or ads for most of their other scifi content.

    Anyway, someday, when I break down and get netflix, I’ll watch it. It sounds good and I agree with you completely on the point that real feminism means depicting women as real people – warts and all.

    For the moment I’m re-binging the first 2 seasons on The Expanse before watching season 3 that just became available on prime. That show also has some solid female characters. And male characters. All of them mixtures of strength and weakness, ideals and ruthlessness, virtue and vice.Report

    • atomickristin in reply to bookdragon says:

      I really really want to watch The Expanse. My husband just started reading the books so I’m hoping he’s going to be up for it soon. (the perils of sharing a tv)Report

  5. Jaybird says:

    The problem with coincidences is that, narratively, it’s okay to have a coincidence make a problem worse.

    You can’t have a coincidence *SOLVE* a problem.Report

    • atomickristin in reply to Jaybird says:

      eh, it doesn’t bother me that much.Report

      • Jaybird in reply to atomickristin says:

        I suppose it might have to deal with what the show is shooting for.

        If it’s a light Shakespearean comedy and the goals of the protagonists are pretty much something like “find long-lost father” or “get married to long-time sweetheart”, you can have the mayor come out at the end and solve all of the problems of everybody and then preside over the wedding or whatever.

        If it’s a science-themed show? I’d rather have them MacGyver themselves out of it. If the writer’s thumb must be on a scale, let it be on the scale of “this chemical reaction normally takes hours rather than seconds” or “the explosion would be around the size of a tennis ball and not the size of a house”.Report

  6. North says:

    I enjoyed the series though it had a somewhat clunky set of plots. Not triangular or even square wheel clunky but maybe six sided? The whole thing clunked noticeably.
    That said I found the re-imagined “Dr. Smith” quite an insidious and even frightening character. She was really pretty well done.Report

    • atomickristin in reply to North says:

      I would agree with that – I think some of the plot twists were too heavy on the “padding” – like they were in there to stretch a show that really had about 8 good episodes into 10. So they threw something exciting in there to take up a few minutes of run time.Report

  7. j r says:

    I find that too often with shows featuring a strong female character, the men who surround her are nitwits present to do everything wrong constantly that the ever-superior females then have to correct.

    I agree with this. There’s a Gillian Anderson show called The Fall in which she plays a senior police detective called to Belfast from London to investigate a serial murderer of women. For the most part the show goes to lengths to show its protagonist with a certain amount of measured competence and bringing a certain feminine perspective that aids in the investigation. For the most part a very good show, despite veering into competence porn now and again.

    But there is also a scene where Anderson’s male superior, with whom she’d had an earlier affair while he was married, literally breaks down crying and says, “why are men so weak and women so strong?” I suppose that kind of pandering works for some people, but yeah, much better when people demonstrate their competence and strength against a background of other competent, non-cartoonish characters.Report