Katniss Everdeen is a badass. Sorry we’re not sorry!
See, it all started with a recent article on Divergent, which included a line from Shailene Woodley about her character, Tris Prior:
“What I like about Tris is that she isn’t perfect. She’s not a super-hero — she’s not Katniss. She doesn’t know how to shoot a bow and arrow, she’s not a badass by nature.”
We read the article and didn’t even blink twice at this quote. Come to find out, it became A BIG FREAKING DEAL at some point because fangirls are sensitive lil’ snowflakes.
Let’s break it down: First, we don’t believe Shailene was trying to insult Katniss Everdeen. She auditioned for the role of Katniss Everdeen and has talked about her love for the series regularly. Nor do we think she was calling Katniss “perfect” or “a superhero”. In journalism, we know so because of that dash: “She’s not a superhero — she’s not Katniss”. Zee dash typically represents one of two things: 1) Someone getting caught up in their thoughts mid-sentence and altering things. She was probably trying to think of a good contrast and eventually stumbled upon Katniss after saying those first couple things. Or 2) A piece of a quote that the writer chose to omit, usually because they think it’s irrelevant or too similar to what’s already been quoted.
Anyone who has read both books should actually be able to see what Shailene is talking about. Katniss IS badass and there is zero shame in it! She knows how to hunt (and effectively kill), she’s got survival skills, and she’s a quick learner who’s able to win hearts. She’s mature and hardened by her difficult upbringing. She’s fully aware of what it means to be in The Hunger Games and faces that head-on. Being badass in such a way doesn’t make her a Xena-style archetype. She’s still vulnerable and scared and fucked up in many ways, despite her badassery. The worst thing for us is the fans arguing that Katniss isn’t as badass as she is to try to make her seem less like a stereotype. She’s super kickass! She’s just other things too!
Tris, on the other hand, is a clean slate at the beginning of her story. She essentially joins the military without knowing what the military is about. No weapons training, no special skills, no endurance, little social skills, and the… emotional squishiness of your average 16-year-old girl. While Katniss has some grit to her, Tris is building that grit up from scratch and in many cases, failing miserably. Realistically, we’re all more Tris than Katniss in this sense (unless you’re a Doomsday prepper or an outdoor survival enthusiast!) And no, we’re not dissing Katniss when we say that.
When an actress says something regarding The Hunger Games other than “OMG I love it (though I don’t plan to be in it)”, the fandom then turns around and tries to EAT THAT ACTRESS, Walking Dead style. Shailene Woodley seems to be a popular target because The Secret Life of An American Teenager was that bad of a show, which wasn’t all her fault, and maybe 3% of the fandom has seen her Golden Globe-nominated performance in The Descendants.
Is Shailene justified in explaining ways she believes Tris and Katniss are different? Absolutely! After all, the Entertainment Weekly cover read DIVERGENT: IS THIS THE NEXT HUNGER GAMES? She’ll have to explain over and over that there are a lot of differences between Divergent and The Hunger Games in the same way that The Hunger Games actors were constantly explaining that their movie wasn’t anything like Twilight. And everyone who understands fandom better than the media will let out a collective sigh of frustration every time.<
But let’s get this straight: Nobody’s turning this into a rivalry between The Hunger Games and Divergent or whatever-the-hell-else dystopia/fantasy comes out in the next few years. WE REFUSE TO PARTICIPATE. It wouldn’t be controversial had another actress called Katniss “a badass by nature”. We might even love them for it. It’s all about the context. Because Shailene says she likes Tris for not being badass, we assume she doesn’t like Katniss for being so when she probably only meant to say she loves how Tris overcomes a more drastic state of unpreparedness.
Written word is a bitch, y’all! Everyone assumes you’ve got a hidden meaning or a snide remark behind a sentence that was said without a bit of malice. EW was smart in using that fact to their advantage and highlighting that quote, thus leaving it up for fan interpretation. Hell, maybe Shailene Woodley DID have the intention of starting fandom wars, because lord knows that’s what multi-million dollar actresses in their 20s apparently like to do in their spare time! … But we’re doubting it.
Take a few breaths, punch a pillow, untwist your panties, and QUIT YA BITCHIN’,
The Girl With The Pearl
As a fandom, there’s a lot of complaining about The Hunger Games. We don’t like actors or hair color or certain lines in the movie. We especially don’t like the people who don’t like the things that we DO like. We’re an uppity crowd, more so than many of us would like to admit. We’ve learned that this is true of EVERY fandom, not just The Hunger Games fandom.
What we sometimes don’t realize is this: We are so freaking lucky to have a successful film adaptation of the series happening right now, even if it can’t please every person under the sun.
Believe it or not, the admins are Victor’s Village also have our OTHER fandom addictions. Perhaps an unhealthy number of them, but we don’t mind one bit! One of mine is Delirium by Lauren Oliver, which has gained a lot of steam over the past couple years but tends to be a love/hate kid of fandom (Lauren doesn’t deal in happy endings or neatly tied bows at the end of her books, ever!) Delirium was set to be made into a television show and then… it wasn’t.
The rights were optioned and the script was written. The actors were cast and the great debate began. The hair naysayers went NUTS because Hana was a brunette instead of a blonde. The pilot was shot and the tide began to turn. Pictures found their way online. Actors openly expressed their excitement for the project. Delirium trended worldwide on Twitter TWICE. Admittedly, we felt a little invincible.
… And then Fox decided to pick up an iRobot rip-off, a House-plays-lawyer drama, a show that sounds suspiciously like Southland, and a Sleepy Hollow remake (to compete against Once Upon a Time, we assume) over Delirium.
Do I sound bitter? I am. I ain’t even gonna hide it. ARRRRRGHHHHHH!
All of our fandom glory came to a screeching halt for a day as we realized nothing may come of the story we love. That doesn’t mean that all hopes have been dashed (Shameless plug for the Don’t Stop the Deliria campaign!), but we’ve become a little jaded and deflated. We know we’re not the only fandom who has suffered when amazing books are sold and placed neatly on the shelves, possibly to never be seen on a screen ever. Lionsgate is currently doing that with John Green’s Looking For Alaska, which is freaking criminal.
Now, imagine if that was The Hunger Games. Imagine if Lionsgate bought the rights to The Hunger Games and decided NOT to make the movie. At the time, the dystopian genre hadn’t been tested onscreen and teen movies often left a bad taste in peoples’ mouths, so they did take a risk there. What if they gave the movie a much smaller budget and ended up halting production? What if the first movie didn’t impress execs and they decided not to release it?
As a fandom, we may not love every single detail of The Hunger Games movies, but we should feel damn lucky that we have them.
I Need to Incorporate More Charlie Brown Screams,
The Girl With The Pearl
There are several things that are apparent when you compare The Hunger Games film adaptation to everything we’ve seen, and heard on or about the adaptation of Catching Fire, and one of those things is this– holy mother of god the costumes are a million trillion times better, and for me at least more like how I pictured Panem styles to look than what was seen previously. By the way that last few bits, yeah– you should read that as if I wasn’t breathing at all, running the words together, and basically being a flail-y costume enthusiast. What can I say, but ever since I made the unfortunate mistake of trying to be a theater major, and having to sit through a term long seminar on every aspect of the theater department at my then tiny university, and finding only the presentation on the costume department interesting, I’ve
become a little bit fixated on, well– costumes. I may not have a stack of reference books on the subject, but I know that the feeling I get when I see a film costumed extremely well is very important. I’ve written before about set design, or the background on furniture choices made in Catching Fire, so when I say set design, or the choices of furniture, art, and other set dressings help tell a characters story, to me it is on par, or the same as costuming, I hope you believe me. This is my point of view, set dressing, and the physical dressings of characters when you really think about it are one and the same, extensions of the story, tools that tell you sometimes everything you’ll ever know about a character, or a place that had up until that moment had only lived in people’s minds. Like this guy to the right, this guy never said a word out loud– but everything you need to know about him is right there in his costume, and his expression. Or that magical moment when Dorothy Gale stepped out of her bleak wind-swept house and into Oz for the first time.
This time around with Catching Fire there’s no doubt in my mind that the costume, and the set designing department has had a major upgrade, or cash injection. And, I’m sure the vote of confidence came about because of the success of The Hunger Games, and I’ve also heard through the grape-vine that the budget was doubled for Catching Fire possibly because of its success. To that I say, hell fucking yeah! And I say that for more than one reason, one of them being this– Alexander McQueen! And this– Junn.J! And this– Rick Owens! And this– Tex Saverio! If you’re at all like me, or even just a little like me you squealed with delight at seeing not just Effie (My Name Is Never Said Out Loud In The First Film), Trinket costumed in character, or costumed in pieces inspired more by the original source material, but other characters as well, then we’re on the same proverbial page. About other characters costumes, I think the costumes that are surprisingly intriguing me the most are Peeta’s. I know, you’d think they would be Katniss’, but there’s just something about Josh Hutcherson dressed head to toe in black leather for the Capitol Gala, or even his Capitol Portrait costume, with his chunky Rick Owens boots, his Junn.J white tuxedo jacket, slim fit
white trousers, and also amazingly styled gold metal collar, pocket square, and cuff bracelets also by Junn.J, that are keeping my eyes on him, and getting excited to see what else they’re going to put him in. I’ve become so intrigued by Peeta’s costuming that I’ve even made the conceded effort to try to find that black leather costume, and have come to this educated conclusion: The coat is looking like it’s by Junn.J, just like his portrait costume, only I’m strongly starting to believe that it’s custom-made for the film, however inspired by pieces that were in Junn.J’s 2012-2013 Fall-Winter collection. Fall-Winter collections tend to be showcased well before those actual seasons commence, so I’m thinking Trish Summerville got friendly, and asked to have a piece altered for the film. She literally put Peeta nearly head to toe in their clothing for the Capitol Portrait, and that includes the accessories, so– hey, if I were a designer and a Hollywood costume designer pulled that many of my pieces for a potential blockbuster film– and potentially asked for an other piece to be altered, I’d alter the thing myself! The trousers, I’m actually thinking they’re by Rick Owens, who’s a total leather master worker, and the boots, yep– those are Rick Owens’ as well. And it simply must be said, damn Peeta looks like a bad-ass in black leather!
Still on the search for Katniss’ Gala costume, for now it’s Versac-Balenci-something to me! It’s like searching for Spock, only way less cheesy.
Them There Eyes
Believe it or not, we’ve got nothing to fool you with this April Fool’s Day. Not that we wouldn’t love to, but sometimes the real world interferes long enough that we don’t come up with clever ways to mess with you.
Thankfully, some other sites were kind enough to do it for us! We’re especially fond of Teen.com article claiming Jennifer Lawrence dropped out of the last two films and has been replaced by Shailene Woodley (aka the young actress who will be taking over all other Young Adult films in about a year) and Down With The Capitol‘s announcement that Suzanne Collins will write a 4th Hunger Games book.
But the best faux announcement (also from DWTC) was about those freaking deleted scenes. You know, the ones that Gary Ross has gone so far as to say don’t exist– well, to be clear, he claimed he used all the material he shot in the film. Until stills from scenes that weren’t in the movie showed up online. Seriously, Gary, you know you can’t hide anything from the Internet! Plus, why claim there’s nothing? Why not just say it’s not something he is ready to release?
DWTC claimed that there was a special one-year anniversary edition of The Hunger Games featuring the mysterious deleted scenes. If we were perfectly clear about those unreleased deleted scenes, this wouldn’t be such a surprise for those of us who forgot the evil that is April Fool’s Day.
We mean, imagine what scandalous materials are being hidden away from us in those deleted scenes! Gruesome, bloody deaths! Pure smut! Extreme prejudice! Or *gasp* the really awful stuff! Another scene in which Peeta and Katniss talk about their lives or the games for another couple minutes?! More looks at life in The Capitol or the districts?! Something that actually clarifies the status of Katniss and Peeta’s relationship during the ending?! CRAZY TALK, WE KNOW.
These scenes could be as dry as sandpaper. They could be completely insensible. But we still want to see them! We want to know every inkling of what went into making these movies, even if we watch them and think “Ouch… okay, we understand why that wasn’t included. My eyes burn!
Maybe there will be some crazy anniversary DVD in the future that we can all feast our eyes on in the future, but can we at least get a consolation acknowledgement of such scenes in the meantime?!
We don’t care if the scene is bad, JLaw’s hair looks fab!
The Girl With The Pearl
Let’s all stop and admit to something: We are a bunch of big, dirty cheating cheaters!
It’s not our fault! When you’re swimming with sharks or running with wolves or existing alongside some vicious creature (aka other fandoms!), you do what you gotta do to come out on top!
How did this revelation come about, you ask?
Today was a big day for me on a personal level, as I managed to pull off my sister’s bridal shower without murdering anyone in the process. But even in the middle of playing party hostess extraordinaire, The Hunger Games still worked its way into the day… because everyone knows I’m a huge fandom geek.
This time, it was a cousin who has children in the appropriate Kids Choice Awards age range. To paraphrase…
Her: “We were watching The Kids Choice Awards last night. The Hunger Games won a bunch of stuff! I was kind of surprised, given the age range.”
Me: “Oh, the Internet knows no age range. Maybe 10 percent of the people voting for The Hunger Games were actually age appropriate. When voting is all online, an 80-year-old could vote for the Kids Choice and no one would be the wiser. Kids voted, I’m sure, but I guarantee you there were way more adults. Hell, I bet some cleared their cookies and voted multiple times.”
Her: “Don’t grown adults have better things to do with their time?”
Me: “Sadly, no.”
From there, I tried to point out Alexander Ludwig’s heinous comb-over. She didn’t recall, but SERIOUSLY, WHAT WAS UP WITH THAT?!
Anyhow, clearly there’s a large chunk of cheaters among us! Not to say that there aren’t kids who have read or seen The Hunger Games– we’re under the firm belief that it’s up to parents to decide when their children can watch certain books or read certain books– but we wouldn’t guess that the majority of kids are totally saavy on books and movies heavy on death and political turmoil. Plus, WE KNOW about the cheating because we helped facilitate it through our social networks! Because if The Hunger Games is nominated, WE BETTER WIN, DAMMIT!
We’re not the only ones, of course! Kristen Stewart won not one but two awards. Plus Johnny Depp took home the award for Best Actor for Dark Shadows, which was a great movie… said no kid ever. They seem a little out of place among the wins for Selena Gomez and One Direction and Spongebob Squarepants. That’s because they are! They were put there for the fandoms and the fandoms ensured the win, regardless of supposed “age restrictions”.
For the record, it was totally worth it, simply for that moment we realized that Willow Shields is both adorable AND double jointed in her elbows!
We All Know We Have the Maturity Level of a Ten Year-Old Anyway,
The Girl With The Pearl
It’s something that *cough* extra dedicated fans prove over and over again, no matter what their tastes: We will travel for our fandoms. Pilgrimages to premieres, public cast appearances, and (if possible) current shoot locations are a given. But what about past shooting locations?
Let’s take note that the set of The Hunger Games that’s explored on the tour is DuPont State Recreational Forest, which is gorgeous but also free to the public. The least expensive tour is $59. Are we intrepid enough to find major movie spots on our own, if that’s all we want? Landscapes can take on a different look over the years, so you could go to the spot where Katniss found Peeta with or without a guide and you may not be able to distinguish it from any other bit of the rocky shoreline. Plus, the look of certain locations were manipulated slightly for filming and have since gone back to their original state, so you’re not necessarily walking onto a movie set. Clearly, we’re torn!
The perks of the tour that you just don’t get from walking around on your own include camouflage lessons “like Peeta”, archery lessons “like Katniss” and slingshot lessons “like Rue”. For us, the slingshot lessons would be most like the character because it would boil down to “O hai, I has a slingshot! No idea how to use it and my talent with it isn’t notable, but LET’S SLING STUFF.” The lessons are even offered for the driving tour, which is damn near cheating, unless you’ve got a condition that prevents prolonged activity in outdoor settings.
Seriously though, all of the activities are cool and we would do them in a heartbeat. There’s even zip lining, survival classes and a “Hunger Games simulation” with the most expensive, weekend-long tour package. Okay… WHAT DOES A HUNGER GAMES SIMULATION ENTAIL?! Why do we suddenly want to load up on carbs and hide all the children? Good god, man, be specific!
Assuming we could actually afford to travel to North Carolina, would we do this? For sure! But we also recognize that we’re THOSE GUYS. We don’t care to stifle our inner geeks! Our parents may be a little embarrassed, though they’d never say that to our faces. If someone told us we could get a three second non-speaking role in one of the Mockingjay films if we wrestled a crocodile and survived, we might chance it! We’re sure most of the people in North Carolina are already rolling their eyes, thinking “Urgh, fandom geeks! Get over it already!”
It may be expensive to some, but the great thing about money is that, as long as you have it, you’re free to spend it however you’d like (which a few excepts, like mass weapons shipments!) If you want to go on a Hunger Games tour, GO! IT may be a little geeky but– to properly use the most obnoxious term in recent years, YOLO, bitches! Wouldn’t you rather do something fun and safe that you love than worry about what other people think of you going on a Hunger Games tour?
Nothing That Starts In HOOKER CEMETERY Could Ever Be Bad!
The Girl With The Pearl
A nor’easter of epic proportions has started in my neck of the country, so if this is the last time I shall ever write for Victor’s Village (or more likely, if I lose my Internet connection for several days), I’m going out WITH A BANG!
Therefore, Victor’s Village presents something we’ve meant to do for a while now:
The Unofficial Hunger Games Movie Drinking Game
CLEARLY NOT ENDORSED BY LIONSGATE OR THE FILMMAKERS, Y’ALL!
Your poison of choice (or, you know, water..)
One regular glass
One shot glass
An underwhelming sense of dignity
Take a gulp when…
Whenever ANY of the characters drink
Prim or Rue let out that “little girl scream of terror” that awakens every parental instinct you’ve ever had
There’s a shot of Emo!Gale after Katniss enters the arena
A tribute death is announced off-screen
Katniss climbs a tree
Peeta stares at Katniss longingly
Katniss shoots an arrow
Ceasar Flickerman says the name of a tribute
Down the glass or bottle when…
A tribute dies on-screen
There is excessive use of over-exaggerated PANIC!faces
A relationship between Cato and Glimmer is implied
The shaky cam hits critical mass
Take a shot when…
A character goes out of their way to explain something that was part of Katniss’ inner monologue in the books
A character who is supposed to disturb you makes you giggle instead
There’s a montage
Got your own brilliant suggestion for The Hunger Games movie drinking game? Leave it in the comments and we’ll add in our favorites!
Happy January 3rd! Three days into the New Year seems like a good time to finally stop and look back on the year that was, right? GOOD. Because we’re gonna do it anyway!
WordPress has given us a handy stats review of Victor’s Village in 2012… one that could have easily been converted into blog form or made public to everyone in its original form, but NAY! We have broken some of it down into little graphics instead!
AND HERE WE THOUGHT YOU LOVED US FOR OUR BRAINS.
Turns out that most of you are just filthy, dirty boys and girls looking for your next naughty Hunger Games fix! Maybe Victor’s Village seems like a place where that would be go down! …Okay, not all of you. Just roughly 3/5 of the people who accidentally stumble on our site using popular search terms in 2012.
Regarding “Hunger Games Hovercraft”– our most popular day of the whole year was August 9, in which this keyword randomly skyrocketed and directed everyone to this post, in which we only mention hovercrafts briefly. I remember being thoroughly confused but also not caring because ZOMG all the hits!
We were also given a world map displaying our readership! The darker the blue, the more of you:
Whoaaaaaa! There are the obvious mainly English-speaking nations where we have amazing readers in convenient timezones that correlate with our posts and we can’t believe they read our posts. Then there are countries in remote locations where people are also looking at our posts and we’re completely chuffed, as the Brits would say (we were going to say “humbled”, but it doesn’t sound as fun)! We freaking love you all!
Goal for 2013? Make lots of those light blues darker!
Speaking of users, here are the busiest users on Victor’s Village in 2012, the comment crowd:
A special thanks to you for keeping the conversation interesting, especially if you’ve kept it civil enough that we’ve not yet considered blocking you from the comments! :-p As for our most commented post? No surprise! Everybody loves a giveaway! Then again, about half the entries didn’t count because people didn’t add our keyword from the rules into their comment! Details, people!
What the WordPress round-up doesn’t tell you is even better!
We attended the world premiere, where we made lifelong friends!
We finally saw The Hunger Games movie!
We interviewed Dayo Okeniyi and Jack Quaid!
We made our way onto video coverage on Celebuzz (twice!) as well as primetime coverage of The Hunger Games fandom on ABC! Also, lots of fun Hunger Games countdown articles on Movies.com!
We celebrated one year of crazy writing antics!
We shared our favorites when we opened up our recommendations pages!
We did tons of fun contests and giveaways!
In all the important ways, we’ve grown as a site. We have brought the funny, though we have also busted out the tough subjects this year. My personal goal is to get BACK into the funny more often (admittedly, it’s harder to write than straight commentary) and continue to make this site crazy enjoyable for one and all! Thanks for a lovely 2012, y’all!
2013… IT’S ON, BITCH!
The Girl With The Pearl
You didn’t think that The 12 Days of Hunger Games was all you were getting for Christmas, did you?
As previously announced, The Hunger Games will have it’s World Television Premiere on Epix at 12pm EST on New Year’s Day, just one week from now! Wes Bentley, aka Seneca Crane, will be hosting a special free preview weekend with a chance to watch on January 4th, but what if you miss that chance? Not every Hunger Games fan happens to have Epix! Thankfully, Epix has very generously teamed up with Lionsgate to offer fans a free 14-day trial membership (no credit cards or funny business required!)
If watching The Hunger Games for free doesn’t brighten up your holiday, who knows what will!
It’s official: The Hunger Games cast is sexy! Well, at least Liam Hemsworth, Josh Hutcherson and Wes Bentley, according to People Magazine’s Sexiest Man Alive edition! Even some of our favorite fancasts that didn’t make it to Catching Fire made the cut!
We think it’s safe to say that if it were more of a “Sexiest Persons Alive”, we’d see plenty of other cast members too– not to mention that Liam earned himself a spot in last year’s edition as well.
Of course, not everyone agrees. There’s that age-old question that Victoria’s Secret is always asking us: “What is sexy?” Perception varies from person to person, especially when you’re going off attractiveness. There’s other factors to be considered if you want people to consider you sexy and we think the cast of The Hunger Games films are very telling when it comes to these signs!
Let’s break ‘em down, shall we?
Modesty – “What? ME? Sexy? Why, I’ve never known! I find that hard to believe, as I still like to watch bad reality television while eating Spaghetti-Os in my Spongebob pajamas or something of that nature, but apparently the readers are okay with that!”
There’s something special about somebody who radiates confidence and enjoys a normal life without outwardly TRYING to be sexy. Josh Hutcherson isn’t posing half naked on a beach every time his takes a month off and for that, he is sexy.
Piercing Gaze – “Excuse me while my intense eyes burn a pathway through this photo and into your soul…”
No matter what the eye color, the ability to make someone else melt when they look at a photo or video of you is a talent! A picture is worth a thousand words… and a thousand more glances! Wes Bentley in particular wins our hearts here.
GIF-ability – “Thanks to that line or hand gesture I had in that movie, I’m an Internet sensation!”
Almost every actor in The Hunger Games wins in this category, thanks to the hilariously talented graphic designers in the fandom. There’s Advice Peeta, Gale vs. Shrek, and Seneca Crane’s Beard taking over everything! How could you NOT love these guys with those images floating around?
Intensity vs. Calm – “I’m all rough and tough in my acting, but watch me be charming and adorable in my spare time!”
We all love it when an actor pulls off a jarring, intense role on the screen. We love it even more when that person turns out to be a calm, endearing person off-screen as well. Popular fancast for Chaff, Idris Elba, played one of he most intense characters on television for many years– Stringer Bell on The Wire– but he often shows his softer side in various interviews, which always makes us love him.
So continue on with your sexy ways, Hunger Games cast! Even if people occasionally get all trollish on the Internet to debate your general attractiveness, we know what makes you sexayyyyyy!
Take Solace in Knowing You Really Stood No Chance at the Top Spot Thanks to Magic Mike,
The Girl With The Pearl