2024 Reading Challenge

2024 Reading Challenge
Jill Elizabeth has read 1 book toward her goal of 285 books.

2023 Reading Challenge

2023 Reading Challenge
Jill Elizabeth has read 5 books toward her goal of 265 books.

Book Review: Unlikeable Female Characters: The Women Pop Culture Wants You to Hate by Anna Bogutskaya

About the Book

Female characters throughout history have been burdened by the moral trap that is likeability. Any woman who dares to reveal her messy side has been treated as a cautionary tale. Today, unlikeable female characters are everywhere in film, TV, and wider pop culture. For the first time ever, they are being accepted by audiences and even showered with industry awards. We are finally accepting that women are—gasp—fully fledged human beings. How did we get to this point?

Unlikeable Female Characters traces the evolution of highly memorable female characters, examining what exactly makes them popular, how audiences have reacted to them, and the ways in which pop culture is finally allowing us to celebrate the complexities of being a woman. Anna Bogutskaya, film programmer, broadcaster, and co-founder of the horror film collective and podcast The Final Girls, takes us on a journey through popular film, TV, and music, looking at the nuances of womanhood on and off-screen to reveal whether pop culture—and society—is finally ready to embrace complicated women.

My Review

As someone who’s always preferred her characters unlikable, because those are usually the most interesting and complex, I found this book fascinating.

Anna Bogutskaya has done an excellent job compiling her list of character tropes and then explaining and populating them with examples that appeal across generations – and across generations of film and television. I found this particularly helpful, as I don’t watch a lot of popular current television or movies, and had to look up a handful of her references, although I’m delighted to report that now I am going to be looking for a number of them to watch as a result.

Her writing style is conversational and engaging and offers a great mix of theory and anecdotal examples. This was a very interesting compilation.

Thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for my obligation-free review copy.

Leave a Reply

You can use these HTML tags

<a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>