In a groundbreaking study (sarcasming so hard that my forehead vein is going to pop) conducted by researchers at UC Davis, 122 male and female undergraduate students were shown movie clips featuring all kinds of heroines from the hot and weak type to the homely and strong type. Researchers wanted to see what kind of effects movie characters and actresses have on our self esteems and which “type” is the more valid role model.
Because clips of Nichelle Nichols in Truck Turner were not available, they used the patron saint of patron saints Angelina Jolie as the “attractive heroine” archetype. They used clips of her in Tomb Raider to show her as a strong bitch, and then used clips from The Changeling (aka “YOU ARE NOT MY SON!”) to show her as a weak ho. On the other side, they used Kathy Bates as the homely archetype and showed clips of her from Primary Colors (strong) and Fried Green Tomatoes (weak). Here are their findings from the Daily Mail which will totally make you fart out a cloud of SHOCK and throw you out of your seat (no, it won’t).
The volunteers were then asked questions to see how the clips had influenced their expectations of a woman’s role.
They found that both men and women thought good-looking characters were better role models than ugly ones.
Those who watched a clip of a beautiful and aggressive female lead – Jolie in Tomb Raider – were also more likely to endorse this type of character as a ‘role model’ than those who watched an aggressive but less attractive lead – Bates in Primary Colours.
Results, published in Springer’s Sex Roles Journal, showed that while women and men expect women to fulfil feminine and masculine roles, women tend to have higher expectations of themselves than men, and that watching attractive, strong heroines on screen reinforces this. Study authors Laramie Taylor and Tiffany Setters, from the
University of California, said: ‘Exposure to attractive, aggressive female characters actually increases expectations on women, including potentially inconsistent roles – after viewing, women are expected to be more independent and ambitious and more socially connected and nurturing.
‘These increased expectations for women occur not only among men, but among women as well, suggesting that women’s expectations for themselves are affected.’
First of all, using Kathy Bates as the “ugly type” is a dirty bird rude thing to do, Mr. Man! Second of all, I don’t really think of any movie characters as role models (except Nichelle Nichols in Truck Turner, of course). The only thing I feel while watching Angie in a movie is a craving for sour gummy worms and a Meryl Streep accent.
Researchers also forgot to mention the part that when Angelina Jolie watches Kathy Bates in a movie, she instantly feels bad about her own acting skills.
But seriously, Maddox needs to go back to crank calling Jennifer Aniston from a payphone outside of his French estate and stop posing as a researcher from UC Davis!