Q:Hello! Love your meta and I have a question about ASiB. At the end, when Sherlock says "the woman" and then reapeats the expression in a slightly different voice, emphasizing it "THE Woman". I've been thinking about that scene, but I cannot grasp the meaning of it. If he is not attracted to Irene, why saying it like that? I'm really interested in your thoughts on that scene. Thanks.
Hello, and thank you!
I’m sure you know this, but in case anyone doesn’t, it’s important to point out: while BBC Irene professionally called herself The Woman, in canon she appeared in one story and had no such title. That came from Watson in A Scandal in Bohemia:
To Sherlock Holmes she is always the woman. I have seldom heard him mention her under any other name. In his eyes she eclipses and predominates the whole of her sex.
This is the reason many recreations of Sherlock use Irene as his love interest. However, canon Sherlock never shows romantic interest in Irene, only the utmost respect for her intelligence.
So that’s one reason BBC Sherlock says it that way in the end. The woman. The woman that eclipses and predominates the whole of her sex.
The only woman that matters. Because clearly none of the other billions of women on the planet could be so clever.
Does that piss you off? Yeah, me too.
Here’s the thing: Sherlock Holmes is a misogynist. In canon, in the BBC version, and in most versions. He doesn’t care much for women, and they have to do a whole, whole lot to earn his respect. Like outwit him. Or demonstrate unconditional loyalty by helping him pull off an elaborate and dangerous fake suicide. Or fool him for a year and then shoot him in the chest.
Does that make the stories and the show misogynist? Not necessarily.
In fact, it can be quite the opposite. Think of all the films and shows that explore racism, sexism, and homophobia by featuring racist, sexist, and homophobic characters. And after all, while the cast is predominately male, we’ve got a pretty good number of interesting, varied, three-dimensional female characters.
Is BBC Sherlock “exploring misogyny?” Eh…I wouldn’t exactly say that’s its mission statement. Although TJLC certainly falls into the category of calling out misogyny. But my point is, I wouldn’t call the show misogynist.
Protagonists have to be flawed for us to engage with them. Perfect heroes are boring. One of Sherlock’s flaws is that he’s a misogynist. It’s kind of a big fucking flaw.
If he constantly treated women like shit and it completely served as a comedic tool and he never learned or grew from it, then yeah, I’d have a big problem with this show. Instead, it’s almost the opposite. Sherlock keeps getting screwed over by how much he underestimates women. It’s getting kind of funny, to be honest.
Irene one-upped him from the start. Yes, in the end he saved her. That was iffy. Let’s see if he learned anything from the initial defeat.
I also want to point out that part of the reason Sherlock is often portrayed as sexist or misogynistic (or both) is because the tv shows and movies are based on a 19th early 20th century text. There was more sexism and misogyny in those days, or at the least it was more acceptable to be openly misogynistic and sexist. Although I do see merit in the writer’s points about Sherlock having character flaws (every great character needs some) I still think it is a little sad that a character flaws or acceptable viewpoint from the freaking 19th and early 20th century is still written into adaptations of Sherlock today.
I mean, wouldn’t it be nice if we could find ways for Sherlock to be outsmarted by a woman (or any gender for that matter) without the reason being that he underestimated them because they were a woman? Wouldn’t it be nice if Sherlock was outsmarted by a woman (or anyone) simply because they were smarter than him, rather than this idea that he didn’t go to his full potential to outsmart them because he didn’t think he needed to.
On the other side I do see the merit of portraying sexism and misogyny in the media as the previous writer is saying, but it is a bit of a risk with Sherlock since so many fans idol worship and follow the attitude that he can do no wrong. Obviously, not everyone thinks that way and I am making a gross generalization, but having seen some evidence (and experienced it from people I know) I can attest that people like that do exist! Anyway, those are my two cents, I usually don’t write these things, but I some how felt differently today.
As I’m walking through Target with my little sister, the kid somehow manages to convince me to take a trip down the doll aisle. I know the type - brands that preach diversity through displays of nine different variations of white and maybe a black girl if you’re lucky enough. What I instead found as soon as I turned into the aisle were these two boxes.
The girl on the left is Shola, an Afghani girl from Kabul with war-torn eyes. Her biography on the inside flap tells us that “her country has been at war since before she was born”, and all she has left of her family is her older sister. They’re part of a circus, the one source of light in their lives, and they read the Qur’an. She wears a hijab.
The girl on the right is Nahji, a ten-year-old Indian girl from Assam, where “young girls are forced to work and get married at a very early age”. Nahji is smart, admirable, extremely studious. She teaches her fellow girls to believe in themselves. In the left side of her nose, as tradition mandates, she has a piercing. On her right hand is a henna tattoo.
As a Pakistani girl growing up in post-9/11 America, this is so important to me. The closest thing we had to these back in my day were “customizable” American Girl dolls, who were very strictly white or black. My eyes are green, my hair was black, and my skin is brown, and I couldn’t find my reflection in any of those girls. Yet I settled, just like I settled for the terrorist jokes boys would throw at me, like I settled for the butchered pronunciations of names of mine and my friends’ countries. I settled for a white doll, who at least had my eyes if nothing else, and I named her Rabeea and loved her. But I still couldn’t completely connect to her.
My little sister, who had been the one to push me down the aisle in the first place, stopped to stare with me at the girls. And then the words, “Maybe they can be my American Girls,” slipped out of her mouth. This young girl, barely represented in today’s society, finally found a doll that looks like her, that wears the weird headscarf that her grandma does and still manages to look beautiful.
I turned the dolls’ boxes around and snapped a picture of the back of Nahji’s. There are more that I didn’t see in the store; a Belarusian, an Ethiopian, a Brazilian, a Laotian, a Native American, a Mexican. And more.
These are Hearts 4 Hearts dolls, and while they haven’t yet reached all parts of the world (I think they have yet to come out with an East Asian girl), they need all the support they can get so we can have a beautiful doll for every beautiful young girl, so we can give them what our generation never had.
Please don’t let this die. If you know a young girl, get her one. I know I’m buying Shola and Nahji for my little sister’s next birthday, because she needs a doll with beautiful brown skin like hers, a doll who wears a hijab like our older sister, a doll who wears real henna, not the blue shit white girls get at the beach.
The Hearts 4 Hearts girls are so important. Don’t overlook them. Don’t underestimate them. These can be the future if we let them.
You can read more about the dolls here: http://www.playmatestoys.com/brands/hearts-for-hearts-girls
The car enthusiast, who is a member of the U.S. Military, hated the car’s silver color. One evening, he let his wife doodle on a few scratches on the bumper, and when the sun came up and he saw her stunningly intricate and elegant drawings, they knew they had to forge on. While he worked on tuning the insides, she drew on the car.
After roughly 100 hours of work and several clear coats to protect the design, they had an impressively beautiful car that they had tuned up as a team! (x)
i swear i saw this like YEARS ago, why did it only resurface now ?
woahhhhhh hope he never sells that car
This is adorable and awesome
Rock The Casbah — The Clash (The Singles, 1991)