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The treatment of women in this series



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KHFan91

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As I've mentioned once before; Nomura isn't able to please everyone.
 

Sephiroth0812

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I doubt that it even is about "pleasing everyone" since that's impossible to reach in any work.

The more statements I read about it the more I get the impression that in several people's eyes Nomura (and KH III itself) failed to deliver at least to a lowest common denominator standard when it comes to the treatment of characters not named Sora in general but even more so when it concerns female characters in particular.

I'm not sure if this comes from things learned from the leaks alone (as since I've started playing KH III I noticed the leaks left out much secondary stuff that paints a fuller picture) or from actual experience of the game itself already, but several things shown in the leaks are undeniably sloppily and sub par done even without any context being added.
 

rac7d

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This is the triumphant return I wanted after 2 titles of doing nothing from kairi
DyA36MQW0AUXWP-.jpg:large
 

Onion Knight

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As if female characters are the only ones in the series getting the short end of the stick. Some male characters, such as Roxas, Ventus, Axel or Terra, have all suffered too. No one is being offensive towards females just because they're females, you just imagined it.
 

Twilight Lumiair

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As if female characters are the only ones in the series getting the short end of the stick. Some male characters, such as Roxas, Ventus, Axel or Terra, have all suffered too. No one is being offensive towards females just because they're females, you just imagined it.


Spoiler Spoiler Show
 
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Onion Knight

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Spoiler Spoiler Show

So, all of this ruckus began simply because a female character was in need of saving? Man, you feminists really need to reconsider your priorities. Making political statements about women in a position of power is for other people to do, Square Enix just wanted to make a whimsical Disney crossover where love and friendship triumphs over evil. And believe it or not, there is no love without a little bit of dependence.
 

Twilight Lumiair

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Yeah. This is true too. Xehanort, although powerful, never truly came across as cunning to me so much as the plot just had everything go his way. The plot can favor certain characters to extremes and disregard other characters (and their efforts) to a fault. That's my main problem with this game.
 
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VoidGear.

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So, all of this ruckus began simply because a female character was in need of saving? Man, you feminists really need to reconsider your priorities. Making political statements about women in a position of power is for other people to do, Square Enix just wanted to make a whimsical Disney crossover where love and friendship triumphs over evil. And believe it or not, there is no love without a little bit of dependence.

Every form of media is, in a way, a statement though. Just like saying "you feminists need to reconsider your priorities" is as an answer to someone wishing for a bit more meaningful female (re-)presentation.
"A little bit of" dependence also isn't the problem that Twilight Lumiair mentioned. It's the fact that there's nothing BUT dependence to the female characters in the absolute majority of the time.
 

Onion Knight

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Every form of media is, in a way, a statement though.

There are no statements in Kingdom Hearts.

It's the fact that there's nothing BUT dependence to the female characters in the absolute majority of the time.

Yeah sure, two female characters got in trouble a couple of times and now they're completely useless and don't contribute anything to the story besides motivation. You're just imagining things. And even if you don't, let's keep everything the way it is. Because I bet if dominatrix took over the franchise no one would have a problem with it.
 

VoidGear.

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There are no statements in Kingdom Hearts.

Then why does it fit into so many stereotypes that media clings onto?

Yeah sure, two female characters got in trouble a couple of times and now they're completely useless and don't contribute anything to the story besides motivation. You're just imagining things. And even if you don't, let's keep everything the way it is. Because I bet if dominatrix took over the franchise no one would have a problem with it.

"A couple of times."
Kairi was, in some way, kidnapped or attacked and in need for saving in every game she had some sort of actual relevance in. Aqua's plot revolved around working her ass off for two guys (three if you count Master Eraqus) without any motivation other than "for them".
No one says they contributed nothing. All that's being said is that it would be nice to see a franchise not go the route of "female character's story revolves around guys and saving them or getting saved by them" for a change, because that concept is simply old, bland and boring at this point.
Most Kingdom Hearts games would fail the - very basic - Bechdel test majorly, and that's just sad for a series with so many different characters that could easily pass it, if anyone cared.
 

Onion Knight

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Most Kingdom Hearts games would fail the - very basic - Bechdel test majorly, and that's just sad for a series with so many different characters that could easily pass it, if anyone cared.

Holy crap, the Bechtel test is like the most feminist thing ever. The moment you brought this up convinced me that there's no saving you. Not even Kingdom Hearts is safe from the feminist cancer, and that's the only true sad thing here.
 

rokudamia2

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Then why does it fit into so many stereotypes that media clings onto?



"A couple of times."
Kairi was, in some way, kidnapped or attacked and in need for saving in every game she had some sort of actual relevance in. Aqua's plot revolved around working her ass off for two guys (three if you count Master Eraqus) without any motivation other than "for them".
No one says they contributed nothing. All that's being said is that it would be nice to see a franchise not go the route of "female character's story revolves around guys and saving them or getting saved by them" for a change, because that concept is simply old, bland and boring at this point.
Most Kingdom Hearts games would fail the - very basic - Bechdel test majorly, and that's just sad for a series with so many different characters that could easily pass it, if anyone cared.

Agreed I’d also add that every other major female characters motivation is driven by men.

Holy crap, the Bechtel test is like the most feminist thing ever. The moment you brought this up convinced me that there's no saving you. Not even Kingdom Hearts is safe from the feminist cancer, and that's the only true sad thing here.

Yikes.
 

VoidGear.

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Holy crap, the Bechtel test is like the most feminist thing ever. The moment you brought this up convinced me that there's no saving you. Not even Kingdom Hearts is safe from the feminist cancer, and that's the only true sad thing here.

People saying feminism is a bad thing get free tickets to my block list anyway.
Congratulations! And thanks for being living proof of how much we NEED feminism.
 

MelodicEnigma

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Then why does it fit into so many stereotypes that media clings onto?

"A couple of times."
Kairi was, in some way, kidnapped or attacked and in need for saving in every game she had some sort of actual relevance in. Aqua's plot revolved around working her ass off for two guys (three if you count Master Eraqus) without any motivation other than "for them".
No one says they contributed nothing. All that's being said is that it would be nice to see a franchise not go the route of "female character's story revolves around guys and saving them or getting saved by them" for a change, because that concept is simply old, bland and boring at this point.
Most Kingdom Hearts games would fail the - very basic - Bechdel test majorly, and that's just sad for a series with so many different characters that could easily pass it, if anyone cared.

I'll be honest, I just can't completely agree with conceptualizing the value of a female character (or devaluing it) based on a check-list factor of her having a relation or motivation with men in her life. Making it about that is kind of petty and inaccurate to what the relationships hold in the context, and believing her ambitions for those she cares about would ultimately change her role simply by replacing one with a female isn't functioning on what Feminism aims to correct in media. Besides, the stereotypes that revolves around female/male interaction in media, at its core, typically involves tropes that emphasize how men see and treat the women, or, relying on romantic subplot to give them purpose in the medium without much else conviction. (this arguable for Kairi, not Aqua) Not to mention, the basic Bechdel test is something Kingdom Hearts initially passes, considering the importance Aqua had in Kairi's life. That test is only meant to show the presence of women in fiction, and getting to the point where they talk about a male character (if not even that fits the stereotypes above), shouldn't conflict with this notion for this series, i.e. Xion and Namine's interaction or Larxene and Namine. It does present the other issue, which is the lack of female leads. I definitely wish there were more female leads for the sake of characterization in storytelling, but I can't agree with quantifying their value based on if their character involves a male presence.

However, I would agree that there are things we're missing when it comes to understanding Aqua and Kairi as individuals. I was really hoping that 0.2 would reveal more about Aqua's past, and this would have been a perfect moment of revealing why being a Keyblader was important to her in the first place. (a classic, "Well, I guess you're wondering why I'm here. It all started with a dream..." lol) So many opportunities missed, including what could've been shown between those who are related to her character. It told a good story, but the storytelling for Aqua, which wasn't too bad, could've easily been better—"limitations" of a video game be damned. KH3 still could've given us more, but again, another opportunity missed outside of moments that reflect the resolutions for her trio.

Then Kairi. Yeesh. Again, the part that I find devaluing isn't factored in by the male presence, but rather, how her role was handled directly. I was seriously rooting for her to be a playable character. "It's too late" didn't sit well with me because even for what he had, this was a better time than any because of the role SHE decided to take after KH2, rather than just being in the fray by plot driven circumstances. But, nope. Not to mention, her training with Lea wasn't even show at all, so getting to the point of seeing her character growth have a considerable lack. She sure got more screen time, but getting the audience to care about it would've been more efficient if we got to experience her as a character—gameplay or not. She's been in the game since the first KH, and while both her and Sora have a characterization that involves each other, this game didn't give us an opportunity to see her outside of that role. If we're going to talk about a character's conviction centering around a male pertaining to romantic subplot, Kairi is the one filling this stereotype. However, we were given an opportunity and teased her importance outside of this mindset. Sad to say, Nomura didn't deliver as much as I hoped for Kairi's complete storytelling. For Kairi, rather than this person being a male is the issue, I believe Nomura's writing should (hopefully), evolve further in whatever KH holds for the future. If he literally doesn't take advantage of future Aqua and Kairi interaction, especially in regards to training...ugh.
 

Onion Knight

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I'll be honest, I just can't completely agree with conceptualizing the value of a female character (or devaluing it) based on a check-list factor of her having a relation or motivation with men in her life. Making it about that is kind of petty and inaccurate to what the relationships hold in the context, and believing her ambitions for those she cares about would ultimately change her role simply by replacing one with a female isn't functioning on what Feminism aims to correct in media. Besides, the stereotypes that revolves around female/male interaction in media, at its core, typically involves tropes that emphasize how men see and treat the women, or, relying on romantic subplot to give them purpose in the medium without much else conviction. (this arguable for Kairi, not Aqua) Not to mention, the basic Bechdel test is something Kingdom Hearts initially passes, considering the importance Aqua had in Kairi's life. That test is only meant to show the presence of women in fiction, and getting to the point where they talk about a male character (if not even that fits the stereotypes above), shouldn't conflict with this notion for this series, i.e. Xion and Namine's interaction or Larxene and Namine. It does present the other issue, which is the lack of female leads. I definitely wish there were more female leads for the sake of characterization in storytelling, but I can't agree with quantifying their value based on if their character involves a male presence.

However, I would agree that there are things we're missing when it comes to understanding Aqua and Kairi as individuals. I was really hoping that 0.2 would reveal more about Aqua's past, and this would have been a perfect moment of revealing why being a Keyblader was important to her in the first place. (a classic, "Well, I guess you're wondering why I'm here. It all started with a dream..." lol) So many opportunities missed, including what could've been shown between those who are related to her character. It told a good story, but the storytelling for Aqua, which wasn't too bad, could've easily been better—"limitations" of a video game be damned.

Then Kairi. Yeesh. Again, the part that I find devaluing isn't factored in by the male presence, but rather, how her role was handled directly. I was seriously rooting for her to be a playable character. "It's too late" didn't sit well with me because even for what he had, this was a better time than any because of the role SHE decided to take after KH2, rather than just being in the fray by plot driven circumstances. But, nope. Not to mention, her training with Lea wasn't even show at all, so getting to the point of seeing her character growth have a considerable lack. She sure got more screen time, but getting the audience to care about it would've been more efficient if we got to experience her as a character—gameplay or not. She's been in the game since the first KH, and while both her and Sora have a characterization that involves each other, this game didn't give us an opportunity to see her outside of that role. If we're going to talk about a characters conviction centering around a male pertaining to romantic subplot, Kairi is the one filling this stereotype. However, we were given an opportunity and teased her importance outside of this mindset. Sad to say, Nomura didn't deliver as much as I hoped for Kairi's complete storytelling. For Kairi, rather than this person being a male is the issue, I believe Nomura's writing should (hopefully), evolve further in whatever KH holds for the future. If he literally doesn't take advantage of future Aqua and Kairi interaction, especially in regards to training...ugh.

Being a damsel in distress and such is an obvious feminine trait that gives a character a reason to be physically female. If a female character, or even a person, has exactly the same traits as males, then they could just genderbender into a male and nothing of value would be lost. And that's why feminism doesn't work. Don't strip characters away from femine traits in an attempt to achieve pointless equality. This defeats the entire purpose of having different genders.
 

Pokie

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Holy crap, the Bechtel test is like the most feminist thing ever. The moment you brought this up convinced me that there's no saving you. Not even Kingdom Hearts is safe from the feminist cancer, and that's the only true sad thing here.

I could be wrong, but isn't there some really sexist movies out there that pass the Bechtel Test ?

Because I bet if dominatrix took over the franchise no one would have a problem with it.

What the Donald Duck are you going on about ? What ?
 

Pokie

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This is true. It’s not a perfect test,

Oh thanks for clearing that up ^^ Though if it's a flawed test, then why use it? Can't we create a better one?


Being a damsel in distress and such is an obvious feminine trait that gives a character a reason to be physically female. If a female character, or even a person, has exactly the same traits as males, then they could just genderbender into a male and nothing of value would be lost. And that's why feminism doesn't work. Don't strip characters away from femine traits in an attempt to achieve pointless equality. This defeats the entire purpose of having different genders.

Sorry, but you sound like you time warped from the '50s and found yourself here.


You lost here in the future Marty Mc Fly ?
 
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