The latest Star Trek was a great movie, but there was one thing that stopped me from enjoying it completely.

Editor’s note: This article was written by Alyce Adams.

It will probably come as no shock that the one thing I had a problem with was the movie’s representation of women. There has been a lot of controversy surrounding the movie recently, with Felicia Day making an interesting blog post about the issue (which currently has over 700 comments), and Damon Lindelof, the film’s writer, even apologising for Alice Eve’s underwear scene.

It was a shock for me to see that so many people were okay with this, and that others were even mad about it being made into a big deal. The unnecessary underwear scene is only the tip of the iceberg, and I thought instead of letting myself go out in an ALL CAPS RAGE, I would try and explain the other problems the movie had in regards to female characters as a whole, and therefore why Eve’s scene is a problem.

First, lets look at the female characters, shall we?

In the entire film, there are two women who have more than one line of dialogue, Uhura and Carol. These are practically the only women on screen, too. I noticed one getting shot, and another helping navigate the enterprise. I didn’t see any others. It’s also important to note the lack of a female presence during the emergency meeting for Starfleet Command, where all the most important members are assembled. Not that you could infer any message from this, or anything…

Uhura and Carol now carry the weight of representing women all by themselves, and unfortunately, they fail rather miserably.

Uhura

Star Trek Into Darkness - UhuraI want to focus solely on Uhura from the second film, as I believe they are represented differently in the each film. What is Uhura’s role? She’s a communications officer. What does she do in the film? Complain or worry about her boyfriend.

In the original series, Uhura is a very important character, as she is one of the first portrayals of an African-American woman in a non-menial role on TV. However, in the latest addition to the franchise, I would argue that her role is completely menial.

She has two scenes were she is actively doing something. One is when she goes to talk with the Klingons to convince them to help the Enterprise catch Khan. Does she succeed? Nope. In fact, Khan comes in and saves her instead.

The second is when she gets beamed down to help Spock defeat Khan. She shoots Khan a few times with a type of stun gun that appears to have no effect on him. Spock then punches him a bit more and finishes him. None of her actions were vital. If she had not been there, the plot could have continued without her.

Her purpose in this movie is to humanize Spock, she serves the character of Spock instead of herself.

Carol

Star Trek Into Darkness - CarolWhere as Uhura had some redeeming scenes, Carol really plays the perfect damsel in distress stereotype.
She is first introduced as a science officer with an impressive list of credentials, and is then promptly sexualized in the now infamous underwear scene. It has been discussed elsewhere, but needless to say it’s gratuitous. If you want a scene to demonstrate Kirk’s playboy and flirtatious character, that’s fine, but you could easily achieve the same effect showing her with her clothes on. You just need to show him looking. The fact that they chose to show her without clothing exemplifies how they’re pandering the male audience. The length of Carol and Uhura’s dresses are also ridiculous and add another example.

Thankfully we see Carol demonstrating her intelligence once, (although briefly and with no great effect), when she deactivates the torpedo. Afterwards, she does nothing. Her plan to stop her father from blowing up the Enterprise because she’s on board doesn’t even work, as he simply beams her back to his ship. The rest of her scenes include her father talking down to her, getting her leg broken, and screaming. She’s hardly even used as a plot device, like Uhura for Spock, and I know I was left slightly baffled at the end as to her purpose in the movie. She wasn’t even used as a romantic interest, so her biggest scene is when she’s in her underwear, which seems a shame when they set her up as an intelligent woman.

I’m not saying Star Trek is a terrible movie, or that it is horribly sexist, but I’m just pointing out that the somewhat two dimensional, sexualized female characters are a frustrating trend in blockbuster movies, and as a 2013 audience member, I expect better.

Listen to similar discussions related to pop culture on the podcast Memoirs of a Fangirl.

Quiz: What is your pet’s Ilvermorny house?

Why should you be the only one who gets a second wizarding house?

1:00 pm EDT, July 29, 2016

Will your pet be sorted into the same Ilvermorny house as you, or will you have to disown them for joining your rival?

Step aside Hogwarts, there’s a new wizarding school in town (or rather, across the sea)! With a new school comes new houses, and a new sorting test. You might’ve gone through an identity crisis after taking the test for yourself, but you’re not the only one who needs sorting. That furry, scaly, or feathery friend needs to know where they belong too, and we’re here to do just that! Last time we helped you find out what Hogwarts house your pet would be sorted into, so now we’ll help you figure out what Ilvermorny house they belong in.

It’s typical for pets to have similar personalities to their owners, so maybe your pet will end up in the same house as you. But to those who have house rivalries, brace yourselves: It’s also possible your pet will end up in a different house than you, maybe even your rival house! Will you be saying ‘bye bye birdie,’ or do you thrive in competition? That probably depends on your Hogwarts and Ilvermorny house.

Whether you have a dog, cat, rabbit, bird, or reptile, all pets are welcome at Hypable’s Ilvermorny sorting ceremony! Take the quiz below and let us know where your pet’s loyalties lie, and be sure to take it for each of your pets (unless they’re a squib. Is there an American name for squib?). Don’t want any of them to feel left out!


Now that you know your pet’s Ilvermorny house, maybe you’ll want to decorate their bed with their house crest (shoutout to the Hufflepuffs)! Or maybe you’ll forbid them from entering your room if they’re in a different house (shoutout to the Slytherins)!

Did your pet get the same Ilvermorny house as you?

Forget seeing Luke Cage and Daisy Johnson in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. According to Jeph Loeb, it’s simply too hard to plan.

Although the Marvel movies and TV series ostensibly exist in the same universe, and although Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. does its best to include Avengers references whenever possible, TV show characters are unlikely to ever show up in the movies.

This despite Chloe Bennet’s continued efforts to remind people that she is, in fact, Marvel’s first on-screen female Asian superhero, and the awesome crossover possibilities the Marvel Netflix series have opened up.

Marvel fans have long been aware of the difficulties of bringing TV characters into the movie ‘verse, but at the 2016 TCAs, Jeph Loeb provided a few more reasons for why it’s practically impossible to coordinate.

“Part of the challenge of doing this sort of thing is that the movies are planned out years in advance of what it is that we are doing,” Loeb says, as quoted by SlashFilm. “Television moves at an incredible speed. The other part of the problem is that when you stop and think about it, if I’m shooting a television series and that’s going to go on over a six-month or eight-month period, how am I going to get Mike [Colter] to be able to go be in a movie? I need Mike to be in a television show.”

In terms of planning out the character arcs, this makes a lot of sense. A Marvel movie might be mapped out years in advance of production, for not to mention release, which means any character scheduled to appear would need to have their stories planned for many seasons in advance. The continuity would certainly be hard to keep track of.

Of course they could still throw in cameos, which fans would probably really appreciate — and crossovers from movies-TV are much more doable, as evidenced by Maria Hill (Cobie Smulders), Nick Fury (Samuel L. Jackson) and Lady Sif (Jaimie Alexander)’s multiple appearances on AoS.

But Marvel is wary of doing that too much, too, because “we never want to be known as an Easter egg farm. It has to work within the story. We never want to do Luke Cage gets into a cab as Foggy Nelson and Matt Murdock are getting out of the cab,” Loeb says, referencing The Man From U.N.C.L.E..

However, don’t lose hope yet. “Anything is possible,” says Loeb. “As I often get reported by you folks for saying #ItsAllConnected, our feeling is that the connection isn’t just whether or not somebody is walking into a movie or walking out of a television show. It’s connected in the way that the shows come from the same place, that they are real, that they are grounded.”

Would you like to see Marvel TV and movie characters cross over more?

If Emily Blunt and Lin-Manuel Miranda weren’t enough to get you excited about Mary Poppins Returns, maybe Meryl Streep’s name on the roster will do the trick.

Mary Poppins Returns is not a remake of the original 1964 classic but rather a sequel to the Julie Andrews-led musical. As such, it stands to reason that we’ll be getting some new characters this time around. One of those characters will be Miranda’s Jack, who will be a street lamplighter.

And, according to Variety, another one of those new characters will also be portrayed by none other than Meryl Streep, who will be taking on the role of Mary Poppins’ cousin, Topsy. And, yes, the legendary actress will be taking on a singing role for the film.

This will also reunite Streep with her Into the Woods co-star Blunt, as well as Director Rob Marshall and Producer Marc Platt. Streep played the Witch in Into the Woods, while Blunt portrayed the Baker’s Wife opposite James Corden.

Disney’s official synopsis for Mary Poppins Returns reads:

Blunt has been cast as Mary Poppins and Miranda will play a new character, a street lamplighter named Jack. Drawing from the wealth of material in P.L. Travers’ seven additional novels, the story will take place in Depression-era London (when the books were originally written) and follows a now-grown Jane and Michael Banks, who, along with Michael’s three children, are visited by the enigmatic Mary Poppins following a personal loss. Through her unique magical skills, and with the aid of her friend Jack, she helps the family rediscover the joy and wonder missing in their lives.

Mary Poppins Returns and will hit theaters December 25, 2018.

Are you on board with ‘Mary Poppins Returns’ now that Meryl Streep has joined the cast?