Robot 6

Joss Whedon: ‘There’s never a headline-grabbing agenda’

buffy-season9“There’s never a headline-grabbing agenda. I did the abortion storyline [in Buffy the Vampire Slayer] because I was becoming very frustrated with a lot of narratives where people either don’t even say the word abortion or have a very facile reason for not going through with it, and two-thirds of American women will have one in their lifetimes. It is a part of the reality of our society that people weren’t even talking about and a young woman who is no position to raise a child gets pregnant very often has to make that decision. It’s not an easy one, it’s not fun, it’s not something to be taken lightly but it is something that needs to be discussed. It needs to be out there and so I very baldly said, ‘We’re gonna do this because it needs to be done.’ And we bought it in a sort of, you know, in a ‘Buffy’ way — ‘Oh no, I’m not pregnant, I’m a robot.’ But that wasn’t to shy away from it. Because it wasn’t about the process, it was about the decision.”

Joss Whedon, discussing balancing sensational storylines with those that advance the larger plot, in an interview with CBR TV at Comic-Con International in San Diego

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16 Comments

Wow, “two thirds of American women will have [an abortion] in their lifetimes”? Really? How can that number possibly be accurate? I’m going to need to see some sort of citation or research to back up that claim…

Google it.
A man like Whedon doesn’t seem the type to lie. He’s a smart man who is a writer. Writers research crap all the time…plus he’s one of the few male writers who know how to write women…
So, Google it if you don’t believe it.

It does not really change the substance of what he said or the relevance of telling their stories, but It looks like he overstated that by a third. He’s probably miss remembering the 2008 stats on the point which were this…

“… roughly one-third of women will have an abortion during their reproductive lifetime…” (2008) [1]
“… of American women … at current rates more than one-third (35%) will have had an abortion by age 45.” (2008) [3]
“… of women aged 15-44 … 30% have had an abortion.” (1992 figures) [4]

“Google it.
A man like Whedon doesn’t seem the type to lie.”

Did YOU google it?

…plus he’s one of the few male writers who know how to write women…

Really? Have you seen Dollhouse? That was a load of misogynist crap.

As to his other writing projects, he writes a sort of idealized suburban California teenager as his female archetype. And maybe he does it with greater depth than most writers of genre television, but that’s only because he’s writing female characters who aren’t just a plot device to serve the male characters’ story.

ConchRepublican

July 27, 2013 at 7:28 am

I’m disappointed in Joss making an error that big. 2/3? Ridiculous.

Unless . . . he has an agenda and wants to promote said “discussion” by inflating the facts to make others feel like it’s more the norm than it really is.

Not to mention included in abortion stats are D&Cs for women who miscarry and need a procedure which inflates numbers even more.

@BreakingRiot

” Google it.
A man like Whedon doesn’t seem the type to lie. He’s a smart man who is a writer. Writers research crap all the time…plus he’s one of the few male writers who know how to write women…
So, Google it if you don’t believe it. ”

I did google it. He took a projection and doubled it and stated it as fact. Your comment illustrates why its so dangerous when public figures go around making seemingly factual statements without any evidence of research or citation of study. People like you just see it and think it must be fact because “He’s a smart man”.

My butt-hurt senses are tingling!

Wait.

Okay I haven’t been following the Buffy comic but didn’t the abortion storyline in Season Nine end with her being, like, a robot duplicate or something? My understanding is that he still managed to cop out of it somehow.

@Elpie, Exactly. His entire attitude seems to be “Well i brought it up so people could talk about it…” and then his story simply just makes it disappear so everyone can feel happy at the end. I respect Whedon, but it does him a disservice to call attention to how he really didn’t say much of anything about the topic at all.

“Really? Have you seen Dollhouse? That was a load of misogynist crap.”

Ugh. There’s one in every comment thread.

BTW this whole Joss Whedon is god thing is the most ridiculous cult of personality ever. The only thing more laughable is how often people misuse the term “misogynist”.

“a young woman who is no position to raise a child” perhaps should not be having sex… or having it more responsibly. If you’re going to talk about life decisions, start at the root of the problem.

“Really? Have you seen Dollhouse? That was a load of misogynist crap.”

Ugh. There’s one in every comment thread.

Yes, I said it.

It was a series where as an audience member, I was constantly asked to sympathize with the executives, enforcers, and technicians who were running a corporation (with its own paramilitary) that was engaged in human-trafficking and sexual-enslavement who regularly placed their chattel in life-endangering situations.

Whatever questions it may have posed about identity (and not very intelligently, I might add) it was wrapped in sensationalistic misogynist salesmanship.

I’m not saying that a lot of Joss Whedon’s work isn’t good, some even verges on great at times but he’s WAY over rated. Again, that’s not saying he isn’t good at what he does, but it’s high time people stop building him up to some demi-god status. And for the record this story line sucked IMO and in no way really talked about the issue in depth.

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