Oddly enough, when I was between the two Kill Bill films, I stumbled upon this article. It focuses on female protagonists in revenge films such as Kill Bill. It asks a question that seemed similar to the one posed on the Girlpower syllabus:
Do they truly offer feminist depictions of female characters or just misogyny in disguise?
The article argues that a problematic aspect of Kill Bill, and other revenge films–especially rape revenge films–is that they teach us that “a woman must first fear a man before she can beat him.” It also argues that the power these female characters have is problematic because it is “predicated upon being a victim.” It concludes by saying that while these issues exist, Tarantino’s depiction of an empowered female character is more feminist than the ones in other films in the genre.
I appreciated this article because I hadn’t quite thought about this genre of films in quite this way before. I agree with the ways the author argues Kill Bill is problematic. However, it makes me wonder about female action heros in general. For example, how would this author read Lara Croft? If I’m not mistaken, Croft was never a “victim.” Would the author of this article read her as a more feminist character in this regard?