Books

Hunger Games and Gender stereotypes

The Mokingjay Part One is about to be released, and the phenomenal success of the books, has pointed to some glaring loopholes for the media industry. When asked about why there is such dominant stereotypes that are shown in the mainstream moves, the industry usually shrugs it off saying: “This is what the Audience Wants.”

But, if it really is what the audience wants, then how come hunger games got so popular?

So, I would like to point out a few ways in which hunger games has been successful in breaking very toxic stereotypical portrayal of both genders.

The HERO:

Industry standards: He is usually the main character, strong, romantic, funny, smart, and able to kill a million bad guys with his bare hands.

While in Hunger Games:

We have a guy who is sweet, sensitive, loves painting and baking.

The Heroine:

Industry Standards:

The prettiest girl that hero chooses to love and she, obviously, falls for him too, and she is there to look pretty and romance the hero whenever he feels like or get kidnapped by the villain so that the hero can save her! Her hobbies include: waiting for the hero, thinking about the hero, talking about the hero and dreaming about the hero.

Meanwhile in Hunger Games: We have a girl who is a hunter, who puts her life in danger daily as she is the main bread earner of her family. She specializes in archery and has no clue about fashion. She prefers her dad’s old jackets and old boots to gowns and makeup. For major part, her aim is to help the hero and her family be safe and will go to every length to see them safe.

The Fashion Conscious Person:

Industry Standard: Almost always a female, who is brainless and loves pink.

Meanwhile in Hunger Games: We have a MAN who loves fashion, and he has the brains and the courage to stand up to the capitol and make a very impactful statement publicly that cost him everything…

The Handsome Jerk:

Industry Standards: The guy, usually this is the Hero, who is extremely attractive and is arrogant about it and gets everything he wants, and he is ready to flaunt his attractiveness. He is usually found with a new pretty girl wrapped around his arm every few days.

Meanwhile, in Hunger Games: We have the most attractive guy, who is not the hero, who is exploited for being good looking, and is madly in love with a mentally unstable girl.

The Beautiful Bitch:

Industry Standards: A girl who is stuck up and thinks so much about her looks that she is arrogant to everyone around her. She thinks no one can come up to her standards.

Meanwhile, in Hungergames, we have a beautiful girl who is arrogantbut not because she thinks her beauty is a gift, but because everyone she loved, were taken away from her. And now she does not want to keep anyone close to her so that she is able to indirectly save their lives.

The LOVE triangle:

Industry Standard: The girl has to choose between two guys, she will go with her heart and be with the one “she has true feelings for”.

Meanwhile, in Hunger games: The girl refuses to listen t0 the emotions and makes the decision with her head. She does not understand the concept of love. She decides her partner based on his personality and his thinking. As Gale puts it: “Katniss will choose the one who she can survive with.”

So, Industry people, it’s high time you break out of those stereotypes and give people their personalities based on their characters, instead of their genders!

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