Television Wives: Tired of the Ophelias
Writers, it's time to start thinking outside the box a little when it comes to writing female characters. Particularly wife characters. I'm really getting tired of seeing otherwise great stories being dragged down by the tired as fuck Lady Plot Blocker formula. No, scratch that. It's not merely a formula. It's a disease that has been infecting fiction since the beginning of fiction.
For whatever reason, when we (and I say "we" because I've been guilty of this myself on occasion) write stories, we usually have a man doing something either really bold or really dumb, but usually a combination of both. But that bold and dumb thing is also supposed to be the "heroic" thing, or at least the thing that drives the plot. He's the husband who has to dash off in the middle of the night to put out fires or invent the cure for cancer or be a superhero or cook meth, all while the wife sits at home doing all the "boring shit" like raising the kids and cooking dinner and essentially hating her life and giving her bold and dumb husband an ultimatum that states he must choose between his bold and dumb activity or her. Ultimately, of course, the man finds out a way where he can get both things and everybody's happy, fah-lah-lah-lah, but we the audience must suffer through a lot of needless artificial conflict building along the way.
I would say this is the case in nearly every movie and television show with a husband and wife dynamic. The wife or girlfriend can never actually support her partner. She has to be the roadblock. The naggy conscience. The Plot Blocker.
That is why people generally can't stand television or movie wives. People will call us sexist for feeling this way, but no, I cast that aspersion on the so-called creative minds behind these works for enabling this flawed storytelling device to continue through every medium. Enough already.
Hey, writers. Can we try something new for a change?