So, I just watched this video called “Women in Refrigerators (Tropes vs. Women),” and while it raises some excellent points, it uses a few rather shoddy examples.
Specifically, two and a half shoddy examples.
First, we have Gwen Stacy. Gwen Stacy is Peter Parker’s girlfriend, who is unceremoniously thrown off the side of a building by Green Goblin in order to advance Peter’s plot, because I guess it wasn’t going fast enough or something, and also to establish Green Goblin as Spiderman’s primary arch-nemisis.
What makes Gwen Stacy a bad example is that she doesn’t stay dead. She is eventually cloned by a villain called Jackal, and basically falls back into being Gwen Stacy almost immediately. Also, in the Ultimate Spider continuity, Gwen Stacy is killed again, this time by the villain Carnage, but soon after comes back, with all his powers.
So our dear Gwen falls under the “Dead Men Defrosting” trope that the video also presents, which makes her a bad example for the Women in Refrigerators trope. Frankly, if Ben Parker had been a woman, he’d be a great example, because he dies solely to advance Peter’s story-line, and never comes back to life. But he’s a dude, so no good.
Secondly, we have Big Barda, who is shot down in her kitchen by Infinity Man. This example is slightly better than Gwen Stacy, because Big Barda was a previously established bad ass, so she’s the half shoddy example. Big Barda would not have gone down without a fight. She was one of the most powerful, kick-ass ladies in comics, and the very idea of her being shot down in her kitchen without having put up a fight is, frankly, highly insulting.
What makes Big Barda a bad example is that she, too, returns to life at the end of Final Crisis, placing her squarely in the “Dead Men Defrosting” trope, even more so that our clone-frantic Gwen Stacy, because Big Barda comes back as herself, and not as a clone of herself.
And then we get to Fable 2, which is possible the worst example for this ever in existence ever.
Fable 2 was a horrid example of WiF. The quote from the video on Fable 2 games is “The narrative revolves around a man seeking revenge for the death of a female family member.”
Except that, in Fable 2, you can also play as a female character, who has the exact same motives and story-line. Making it the story of a woman seeking revenge for the death of a female family member.
Yeah, probably not the best example to use.
However, everything else in the video is pretty much spot on.
The point I’d like to make is that If you’re not the main character, you will probably die in order to further his/her plot.
But why do they have to choose the girlfriends?
It probably has something to do with the fact that the main character of the comic series is dating them.