Recently, a co-worker and I were discussing re-watching movies that you loved as a child. I recalled my fondness for Splash, Mannequin, and Date With an Angel. I was pretty smitten with the women in these movies–all of whom are somehow not quite human and often silent. Can that be a good thing? Probably not. I was attracted to characters that were valued for a superficial and predictable physical beauty. They are also docile and in need of saving…what the darn was I thinking? I remember liking the magical elements of them and that part I’m cool with owning. It seems like a normal enough thing to like a little supernatural fun. However, as a small girl child who would grow up to be a woman and to love women, the concept that I idealized these particular ones doesn’t make me feel so swell.
Did I want to be like them? Yes. I wanted Darryl Hannah’s hair, but my mom vetoed the needed dye and perm job. Did I have a crush on them? Yes, that too. They epitomized something for me at that age, some media fed misogynist dream of a perfect woman. The rigidity of my thoughts astounds me now and is also rather embarrassing. However, nothing changes the fact that at that age it was true. I can’t take it back. That was me, then.
Guess I’m glad enough to be me now.