Saturday, July 10, 2004

A Little Mary Jane: Sandefur has declared me a Libertarian, interpreting the fact that I believe states have the right to make laws I don't agree with to somehow mean I should belong to a party that would work for implementing laws I don't believe in, for not implementing laws I do.

Fair enough.

I declare him blind for his inability to find Kirsten Dunst "pretty."

Please adjust his driver's license accordingly.

The problem with the Mary Jane character in the movies is that they've combined two characters to make her, two characters that are actually meant to be complete contrasts to each other, sort of like trying to combine the stoic, dark, muscular Batman with the laughy, colorful, skinny Joker to make one "more complex" character.

In this case, the two characters are Gwen Stacy and Mary Jane from the Spider Man comic books.

Gwen Stacy was the cute girl-next-door who represented the calm, peaceful home life Peter could have had if he had never become Spider-man. She represented stability and beauty and security (Her father was the police chief). She died while Spider-man was battling the Green Goblin, in a confrontation similiar to the one at the end of the first movie.

Mary Jane, on the other hand, was the wild girl with the flaming red hair and the edge-of-your-seat attitude about life. This is the girl whose father was abusive, but rather than turning her towards extroversion, it taught her to fight. This is the girl who dated Harry Osborne but flirted shamelessly with Peter. After school she became a star, not of stuffy Jane Austen-style plays, but of soap operas. This is the girl who would call Peter "Tiger."

So trying to combine the two has created a somewhat muddled character without clear motivation. I'm somewhat disappointed with the result--I regret not getting to see the feisty flame-haired flirt on screen--but hey, it's Kirsten Dunst! Who's complaining?

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