Too Female? #TooFemale

Last Monday, I found out that CBS had passed on the new Nancy Drew TV series. Not because the pilot tested badly (it tested really well) but because it was “Too Female”.

My only reaction was: Ugh!

CBC Ottawa’s All in a Day talked about it that night.

Sarah Shahi – Filming ‘Nancy Drew’ in New York City 3/19/2016 - celebmafia.com
Sarah Shahi – Filming ‘Nancy Drew’ in New York City 3/19/2016 – celebmafia.com

What do they mean by Too Female?

It could mean a lot of things but mostly it means that they believe that it won’t appeal to their core demographic. Which is apparently mostly men between the age of 18 and 49. Which is the demographic that most networks seem to be targeting.

That’s why you get a kickass character like Detective Kate Beckett (Castle) and Doctor Constance Brennan (Bones), but the studio insists that they work with a male lead. Sometimes it works, and sometimes the male is just boring like Body of Proof where the male cops were about as interesting as the corpses. (Mostly less.)

Rarely do you get a mystery show where you have a female lead that isn’t saddled with a male partner to appeal to the “male demographic”. Other than Veronica Mars and Murder She Wrote, the only one I can think of is Rizzoli & Isles.

Does Gender Matter?

From a story perspective; no. You can tell a fantastic story with a male or a female lead.

From a demographics perspective; I don’t know. I’m not your typical man and I can’t speak for all men. I enjoy female leads, and I think a smart intelligent character is awesome. Female led shows have done well in the past; Veronica Mars, Buffy, Xena, Murder She Wrote, Star Trek Voyager, etc.

I have gotten more than one funny look when I’ve mentioned my love for Gilmore Girls or Disney Princess movies, so the stereotype is there.

The one place that it absolutely matters is in representation. I can turn on the tv and press any combination of buttons and there’s a huge chance that I’ll end up on a show with a main character that looks like me. (White male, 18-49) There are good guys that look like me, bad guys, smart, dumb, etc. etc. etc.

We don’t have the same for women. It’s improving but it’s not there yet.

And that’s not mentioning other gender identities, sexual preferences, cultures, ethnicities, etc.

What Can We Do?

Find and Enjoy the #TooFemale shows out there with well written female leads. Share your love on social media, buy the merchandise, go see the movies.

My experience is limited, but the following TV shows have female leads that kick ass (figuratively and literally) and are still on the air. Check them out, and if you love them let the world know:

There are LOTS more but these are the ones I’ve watched and enjoyed.

While you’re feeling active, sign the Agent Carter to Netflix petition.

 

Go and shamelessly enjoy all the “Too Female” shows. They’re usually better written anyway.

Éric

Can-Con 2015

Hello my Imaginary Friends,

Tomorrow is tue first day of CAN-CON: Conference on Canadian Content in Speculative Arts and Literature!

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It’s a great weekend for anyone who is a fan or writer of genre books.

CAN-CON 2015 Poster Sep 28

What’s Awesome about Can-Con

This convention is special for its sense of community. Some of the attendees will be hopeful authors, others will be publishers, and there will be multiple award winning giants of science-fiction and fantasy. All with an atmosphere of love for speculative fiction.

It feels like a family reunion. I feel welcomed and accepted.

I unfortunately also invariably say something stupid. Mostly its small things like when I told Matt Moore (One of Ottawa’s master horror writers) I liked his reading when he’d only been the MC.

Then there was the time I told Tanya Huff (The legendary Fantasy author) and Linda Poitevin (The amazing Urban Noir and Romance author) that I preferred writing female protagonists because women are simpler to write. *Facepalm* *Blush* *Dies of embarrassment* What I meant was that I tend to understand women better than I understand men which makes it easier for me… sigh

Hopefully everyone I say something stupid to will forgive me after getting a hearty laugh from my crimson painted face.

Pitches

Speaking of the possibility for embarrassment… One of my new year’s resolutions was to submit Parasomnia to 3 agents and 3 publishing companies. I’m getting the 3 publishing companies taken care of at Can-Con. Effectively I’ll have 5-15 minutes to sell them on the concept of my book. If they’re interested they’ll take either the whole book for review or the first few chapters.

My like of what I’ve written goes up and down. Mid way through Parasomnia I hated it. When I was done I knew it was the best thing I’d ever written. When I edited it I was convinced it was crap.

I just looked over all the comments from my amazing (Seriously you guys rock) beta-readers to make sure I’m not delusional to think this book should be published. They all seemed to enjoy it. They used words like “Enjoyed” and phrases like, “kept me interested” YAY!

I’m pitching to two publishers I respect a lot and one I’ve only vaguely heard of and I’m sitting here trying not to panic.

Dealers Room

Last but not least the Dealers Room will be filled with amazing authors, publishers, and bookstores. JenEric Designs will be there, with a brand new button and more coffee than even I could drink in a weekend.

This will be your last chance to get the Great Pumpkin (Pumpkin Flavoured) coffee at a convention until next fall.

The vendors room is FREE so even if you’re not at the Con feel free to drop by the Sheraton downtown Ottawa (150 Albert St) and say hi.

 

Hope to see you there!

Éric