A Writing Entry – How to Write a Strong Female Character

Or maybe I should have titled this, “An example of how NOT to write a strong female character.”

Continue reading A Writing Entry – How to Write a Strong Female Character


Fifteen-minute Movie – Batman and Robin

or, “Worst Batman Movie EVER!”
or, “Worst Adaptation EVER!”
or, “ARGH!!”

[[Batman and Robin are suiting up in their anatomically correct rubber suits]]

Robin – Supposedly witty one-liner.

Batman – Supposedly witty retort.

Robin – Well, that’s your movie folks.  If you don’t like it, get out now.

[[After Batman demonstrates his chiropteran fetish extends even to parking spaces, the duo head out to respond to a crime in progress where Mr. Freeze is making short work of incompetent cops to steal a ginormous diamond]]

Gotham Museum of Plot Convenience:
Batman – Freeze, Freeze!

Freeze – Wow, I really hope the audience likes puns, because that’s just the start!

Robin – [[busts in on the Robin-cycle which leaves a Robin-sign shaped hole in the wall]] Too much talking!  Action!

[[So Freeze’s goons skate in and Batman and Robin participate in the most ridiculous hockey game put to film to try to get the diamond; all the Bat-gadgets in the world and neither of them have a pocket??  Probably through some bad editing, Robin gets the diamond]]

Freeze – If you’re not going to play fair, I’m just going to turn my car into a rocketship and leave.

Robin – Wow, that’s really stupid.  No one would do that.

[[Freeze does that and Batman follows to apprehend him but only gets captured; Robin goes after Batman anyway]]

Freeze – I’ll set this rocket to blow up and destroy half of Gotham while I jump out and safely glide down into the middle of Gotham…wait, what?  Never mind.  We’re five minutes into this thing and all logic and physics have already gone out the window, just like me!  [[Jumps out]]

Robin – I’ll save you!  [[Does so with a heat ray-gun that might possibly have been useful in the fight in the frozen museum…  Also, where is he holding that diamond?]]

Batman – You stupid jerk!  You’re supposed to secure the diamond while I get the bad guy!

Robin – We’ll you’re doing a bang-up job of that!

Batman – Whatever.  We need to get out of here before we both die.  I’ll just blow up this rocket so it doesn’t crash and destroy half of Gotham, which doesn’t make any sense anyway.

[[They snowboard out of the rocket, catch Freeze, and then land…somewhere… and run through some tunnels after Freeze?? The geography of Gotham City is very confused]]

Batman – We are assured victory as long as you don’t do something stupid.

Robin – Um, you mean like jump out in front of the ice gun and get myself frozen and allow Freeze to take the diamond from my outstretched hand?

Batman – Yeah, that would be something stupid.

[[Which Robin proceeds to do; incidentally, where was he holding that diamond on the trip down?]]

Freeze – I could kill you now, but I won’t, because that would end the movie too quickly.

[[The audience wouldn’t actually mind, but alas that does not happen and Batman thaws Robin with a heat laser that probably would have been really useful in the fight against Freeze and his frozen goons…]]

Cartoonishly Evil South American Lab:
Ivy – Personal log of Pamela Isley.  My efforts to breed hybrids of plants and animals isn’t working, possibly because that’s completely scientifically impossible, but I’m going to keep trying anyway!  Also, my creepy boss keeps stealing my venom samples for some super-secret project that involves people screaming in pain.  I think I’ll go find out what he’s doing!

[[So the door to the super-secret lab isn’t even locked and the nerdy plant fanatic finds out her boss is creating super-soldiers and auctioning them off to the highest bidder; naturally when the experiment works and creates Bane, he busts up enough stuff to reveal Ivy’s hiding place]]

Woodrue – I knew I should have locked that door!  Pamela, join me and we’ll be rich!

Ivy – I have absolutely no intuition or sense of self-preservation, so I’m going to expose your little scheme and get you fired!

Woodrue – And I’m going to kill you.  [[pushes her into a whole bunch of toxic chemicals, plants, and snakes; the chemicals eat into the floor because clearly “toxic” means exactly the same thing as “corrosive”]]

Cartoonishly Evil South American Lab (Later):
[[The ground opens up again and the new and improved Pamela Isley pops out like a daisy]]

Woodrue – Whoa!  That attempt to kill you actually made you totally hot!

Ivy – Yes, I know.  Kiss me, you fool.  [[he does, because he is]]  Oooh, so sad.  It turns out I’m now poisonous!  [[he dies]]  I will now somehow get Bane to work for me and I will destroy all humanity to save my beloved plants!  And I will start by burning down this lab and killing all my beloved plants in here!  And possibly a bunch of surrounding plants, since I am in the middle of a jungle full of plants!

Batman – So I acquired this security footage from a local university science lab that identifies the thief as ‘Victor Fries.’  His wife acquired the rare MacGuffin syndrome and he was researching a cure before he was victim to a terrible accident that could have easily been avoided if his lab was OSHA compliant with handrails and didn’t have giant vats of cryogenic fluids out in the open like that.  Anyway, he survived but must be kept at sub-zero temperatures or he’ll die.  His suit’s laser cooling system is obviously powered by diamonds.

Alfred – Sorry, sir, I was quietly coughing in the corner, so did I miss the sensible part of that explanation?

Batman – … Moving on, Dick, that was stupid.

Robin – Whatever.  Don’t you have some hot chick to completely ignore at a fancy party?

Gotham Observatory Statue:
[[Bruce Wayne is hosting a fancy party to raise interest in his donation of a huge telescope and completely ignoring the hot chick hanging on his arm.]]

Clearly Poison Ivy in a Nerdy Disguise – Hey, Mr. Wayne!

Bruce – Yes, odd person whom the four police officers can’t seem to detain for no good reason?

Ivy – I have written a plan for Wayne Industries to stop killing Mother Earth and to save the planet.

Bruce – Um, this would result in the deaths of millions of people.

Ivy – I fail to see the problem.

Bruce – And for some reason I’m going to try to argue with the crazy lady by showing her an invitation to my exclusive party to rent the family jewels for a night, which is a pun the movie actually didn’t use.  Go figure that.

Ivy – And I will walk away narrating my evil plan out loud.  Good thing those four cops just vanished or I might have been arrested or something.

Mr. Freeze’s Blatantly Obvious Secret Hide-out:
Freeze – You idiots can’t sing!  What do I keep you around for?

Frosty – To provide relevant plot information after you get done pining for your frozen wife you keep in the totally-not-secret cooler?

Freeze – Oh, right.  And remember, the first person who makes fun of my fuzzy bunny slippers dies!

The Turkish Baths:
Raver Gang Leader – Hey, plant lady, this here is our secret hide-out.  Do you know how much money we spent on black lights?

Ivy – Don’t know, don’t care.  Bane, throw them out.  [[Bane does so]]  And now to make my garden grow…

Wayne Manor:
[[The doorbell rings and shockingly the aged Alfred doesn’t hop to and get the door, leaving Dick to have to answer it, where he sees Cher from Clueless (which is a far, far better movie than this)]]

Bruce – Alfred, you didn’t get the door?  What’s wrong with you?

Alfred – Pardon my ominous coughing sir.

Dick – Hey, you’re cute.  Who are you?

Barbara Gordon – I’m like totally Alfred’s niece!  I’m from London, which is totally obvious by my British accent.  OMG, there’s Uncle Alfred!

Bruce – Um, why didn’t you tell me you had any family of any kind?

Alfred – It didn’t seem important.  I didn’t know she was going to ever show up here.  Is it alright if she stays?  I promise she won’t get into any trouble.

Bruce – Just keep her out of the basement if you know what I mean.

Dick – So do you have any hobbies or anything you like to do that I can maybe do with you?

Barbara – No, I’m like totally boring and stuff.  So you don’t have to like, worry about me or anything.

Gotham Observatory Statue:
[[So the guy who stole any pictures of him in the first movie is now doing public appearances in this one…  Anyway, the whole auction is very weirdly staged and involves bidding on some women in flower-themed dresses that get to wear the diamonds or something; it’s really not explained very well.  Luckily Poison Ivy shows up and does a strip tease to make things interesting]]

Ivy – Pay no attention to the pink special effect dust I’m blowing into your faces.

Duped Duo – What?  Your leotard is sparkly.

Ivy – I’m going to goad you two into fighting over me for reasons that aren’t adequately explained.

[[So they get into a bidding war that ends with, I kid you not, Batman pulling out a Bat-credit card]]

Audience – *facepalm*

[[Unfortunately for Ivy, Freeze decides to steal the diamond and busts up the party]]

Freeze – Second verse, same as the first, a little bit louder and a little worse!

[[Ivy’s pink dust doesn’t work on Freeze and he escapes but the determined duo chase after him; for some reason the city is full of giant statues that make traffic a nightmare]]

Freeze – I’ll just set my ice gun to the “instant metal fatigue” setting, and this will be smooth sailing.  Assuming I can make that jump, of course.

Batman – Robin, you can’t make that jump.

Robin – Yes, I can!

Batman – It’s not safe!  I’m shutting down the Robin-cycle!  Even though that will leave you skidding out of control to the edge of this statue, which is surely much safer than letting you try that jump.

[[Eventually Freeze is captured by Batman although all we see of the fight is a wide-eyed, unmoving Freeze and Batman standing over him like a gymnast who just stuck the landing; in other news, Alfred is being cryptic and Barbara is sneaking out at night and stealing a motorcycle, which only Dick picks up on]]

Arkham Asylum (Which is Apparently Located in Mordor…):
[[Freeze is wheeled into his cell in a fridge; laugh, damn you!]]

Freeze – Allow me to say some dialogue that makes no sense except to shove in yet another pun and then attempt to kill you.  [[This does not work]]

Guard 1 – Ha ha, loser!  Only that blue spotlight shining down on the bed is cold enough to keep you from dying.

Guard 2 – Because physics totally works that way!

Wayne Manor:
Dick – You suck!  I hate you!

Bruce – I know better than you do, so deal with it.

Alfred – Pay no attention to me as I totter around and cough ominously.

Arkham Asylum:
Guard 1 – So, is it really a good idea for us to be in this cell with Mr. Freeze?  I mean, I know he can’t get out of the blue spotlight, but why is it necessary for us to actually be inside with him?

Guard 2 – To guard the door, of course.  I mean, the cell can totally be opened from the inside.

Guard 1 – That-that seems like a very poor design.

Ivy – Can I come in?  I’m his sister.

Guard 2 – That sounds totally convincing to me.  [[Lets her in]]

Ivy – You two are way too stupid to live, so I’ll just kill you.  [[She does so]]  Here’s the pitch: I’m springing you so we can destroy Batman and Robin and maybe take over Gotham City.

Freeze – Okay.  So how do we get out?

Ivy – My brainless mook is stealing your cold suit and will bust in, give it to you, and then we bust out.

Freeze – Yes, how do we bust out?  There are a lot of guards, you know.  And we’re several stories up.

Ivy – Um.

Freeze – You didn’t have a plan to get out?  This is some rescue!

Ivy – Hey, here comes Bane!

[[One more cold-related pun later and the painful punning pair plus one manage to escape the Tower of Sauron, I mean, Arkham Asylum]]

Mr. Freeze’s Blatantly Obvious Secret Hide-out:
Robin – Hey, there’s a totally not hidden door behind the cooler.  [[They find Mrs. Freeze]]

Batman – According to this research conveniently lying around, it seems Mr. Freeze actually cured Stage 1 of MacGuffin’s syndrome.  Unfortunately, his wife has Stage 4.

[[Freeze and Ivy watch from a grate that shouldn’t even be in the floor]]

Freeze – Curses!  How did Batman and Robin find my secret hide-out?  No time to worry about that because I need to get my wife!

Ivy – You’re married?  I didn’t know!  How dare you not tell me!  Because even though I’m supposed to be a femme fatale who only uses men, I am apparently jealous of some other woman.  Anyway, you get the diamonds you need for your suit and I’ll get your wife!

Freeze – I’m sure that won’t backfire in any way.

[[Ivy blows more pink special effect dust at the dim-witted duo and gets them fighting again; this results in Robin getting dumped in a bunch of thick, slimy green goo and Ivy pulling the plug on Mrs. Freeze]]

Commissioner Gordon – How did the villains get away?  Isn’t that your job?  I mean, I suppose technically as the police we should do something, but this is still your fault.

Robin – This is all your fault!  I’m breaking up the band and starting my solo career!

Wayne Manor:
[[Well, Dick doesn’t have anywhere else to live, but he does have time to spy on Barbara, who again sneaks out and steals a motorcycle; Dick follows her to the seedy underworld of off-track motorcycle racing]]

The Seedy Underworld of Off-Track Motorcycle Racing:
Barbara – Like, here’s your money.  Let me in the race.

Coolio – Sure thing.  Can you believe they got me to do a cameo in this movie and didn’t give me a part working for Mr. Freeze?

Random Evil Racer – I’m sick of you winning.  I’m going to make sure you lose tonight.

Barbara – Wow, that like sounds totally threatening or something!

[[So the racers, representing such street gangs as the Ziggy Stardusts, the Kubricks, the Sweet Transvestites, and of course the Stereotypical Bikers, line up at the start line as well as Dick who apparently didn’t have to pay anyone to get in; naturally the Random Evil Racer tries to kill Barbara and they all race heedlessly to an unfinished bridge for reasons that aren’t explained but allow Dick to somehow save Barbara’s life]]

Wayne Manor:
Dick – So what was that all about?

Barbara – I’m like totally tired of seeing Uncle Alfred be like a servant to you.  I mean, he’s totally old!  So I’ve been doing this illegal street racing stuff to earn some money to help him like retire.  You know, before he dies.  Because he’s sick, not because he’s old.  I mean, he’s old, but he’s sick too.  So anyway, I’m helping!  [[leaves]]

Dick – [[spots Bruce, who presumably overheard the conversation]] Is that true?  Alfred’s dying of some mysterious illness?

Bruce – Yes.  He has MacGuffin’s syndrome.

Dick – If you knew he was dying, why have you been such a jerk to him for not being up to his usual standard of, um, butlering?

Bruce – I’m kind of a dick, apparently.

Poison Ivy’s Secret Hide-out (formerly the Turkish Baths):
Freeze – Where’s my wife?

Ivy – Batman and Robin killed her.  You should get revenge and take over the world!

Freeze – Of course!

Ivy – And once you’ve killed everyone with ice, I’ll cover the world with plants and no humans will ever trouble us again!  But first, to finish off Batman and Robin!

Bruce – Dick, where are you going?

Robin – I actually got a Robin-signal in the sky!  It’s Ivy.  She totally loves me and I’m going to see her!

Bruce – You do realize all that pink special effect dust she’s been blowing into our faces is a kind of pheromone that makes us think we’re in love with her and that she’s in love with us.

Robin – That’s stupid.  She’s totally in love with me, and not you.

Bruce – Will you just trust me?

Robin – Why?  You haven’t trusted me once this whole movie.

Bruce – That is a really good point I’m going to ignore.

Wayne Manor:
Barbara – I know Uncle Alfred told me to give this CD to his brother, but I’m like totally family too so I going to see what’s on it.  Oh, it’s password protected.  Well, after an unlimited number of tries I’ll just pick the most obvious password and see if that works.  Hey, it does.  Cool.

[[Barbara heads on down to the Batcave where Alfred Headroom tells her he’s already got her very own anatomically correct suit waiting; which apparently Bruce was totally clueless about; Great Detective indeed]]

Poison Ivy’s Secret Hide-out:
Robin – Hi, honey, I’m home!

Ivy – Kiss me, you fool!

Robin – Wait, tell me the plan.

Ivy – Sure.  Mr. Freeze is going to use the telescope at the observatory to somehow freeze Gotham City.  He’s on his way there now.  You’ll never stop him.  Kiss me, you fool!  [[he does, because he is]]  Hahahahahaha!!!  Now you will die!

Robin – Nope, I’m protected.  I wore a rubber… pair of lips.

Ivy – Damn it!  Well, then you can drown in my Lily Pond of Doom!  [[The rather slim and fragile looking Ivy manages to shove the expert fighter and well-trained athlete into the pool]]

Batman – Not so fast!

Ivy – My vines of doom will take care of you!

[[And so the pathetic pair are foiled by foliage and bad editing until finally Batgirl makes her dynamic debut]]

Batgirl – Pick on someone your own gender who can actually hit back!  And also say something damning that will come back to haunt you later!

Ivy – Bring it!  And I was the one who killed Mrs. Freeze!

[[The fight isn’t that interesting and finally ends when Batgirl kicks Ivy into her giant orchid which for some reason decides to eat her even though she was sitting comfortably in that very same orchid earlier in the scene; Batman finally cuts his through his vines with a Bat-buzzsaw cuff and Robin gets out of the water]]

Batman – Who the hell are you?

Batgirl – Barbara, duh.

Robin – Yeah, that’s pretty obvious.  Well, we better go stop Mr. Freeze!  And we should do so as quickly as possible.

Gotham Observatory Statue:
Batgirl – Um, why did we all go back to the Batcave to change into these new suits?  Aren’t we in a hurry?

Batman – Just go with it.

[[In the meantime, Freeze has managed to turn the telescope into a freeze-ray gun because all the equipment fits together perfectly of course]]

Batman – Okay, here’s the plan!  Get rid of Freeze and use technobabble to thaw the city before everyone dies.

Freeze – I object to that plan!

Bane – Rawr! <I also object to that plan although there is no reason given as to why I’m working with Mr. Freeze instead of Poison ivy.>

[[The tiresome trio manage to dispatch Freeze and Bane; Batgirl primarily uses the technobabble to save the day while the other two watch.]]

Batman – Freeze, I know you’re slowly warming up and dying and that this must be excruciatingly painful for you, but I know you cured Stage 1 of MacGuffin’s Syndrome.  Can you please give me the cure so I can save someone?

Freeze – You killed my wife!  No!

Batman – Actually, I have this damning footage of Poison Ivy confessing she killed your wife.  And she didn’t actually kill her.  We apparently saved her off-screen.

Freeze – Oh, okay then.  I happen to keep the cure on me at all times.  Insert one more lame pun here.

[[And Freeze is returned to Arkham Asylum this time with his suit and sharing a cell with Poison Ivy even though that makes no sense any level, even for this movie!]]

Wayne Manor:
[And Bruce just gives Alfred the glowing blue stuff with no analysis or question but it does seem to work and Alfred is cured, although still very very old]]

Bruce – You go back to school young lady.

Barbara – No.

Bruce – Okay, it’s not like you need to graduate high school or college or anything like that.  Now, one more awesome action shot to end the movie!

[[Action shot of the three running away from the Batsignal because it’s awesome, apparently]]

-fade out-

Audience – AAAARGGGHH!!