Warning – Spoilers for Mad Max: Fury Road
I saw Mad Max: Fury Road at WisCon and again when I got back. I think a lot of folks have given better commentary than I can about what works and why, so I’m not here to add to the noise.
But I’m getting a little weirded out by a trend I’ve seen over the past few days, which is the celebration of the War Boy rhetoric from Mad Max. I mean, wasn’t the whole point of Nux’s storyline that the War Boys were, in their own way, as much things to be used as the Brides? Sure, the War Boys are empowered in a way that Brides (and the milk women) are not, but they’re still entrapped in a system of oppression (and even encouraged to support it). Really, they’re an excellent hyperreal illustration of how men are also victims of the Patriarchy, encouraged to perpetuate it through self- and other-destructive behaviors. So when I see all the WITNESS! cries and the pro-chroming rhetoric, I’m like… is this supposed to be ironic? I don’t see people crying out “rape me, impregnate me, and put me in a creepy chastity belt and/or on a milking machine!” with the same fervor. Why? Because we KNOW that is a gross violation of our personhood. But so was being a War Boy.
Don’t make Furiosa throw you out of the truck, kk?