The second season of this show - The Returned (Les Revenants) - is now on netflix, and I am re-watching the first season, as it's been a while.
This is something I wrote about it a few years ago after watching the first season.
The women in Les Revenants
I watched this show recently on netflix: The Returned (Les Revenants) It was very good. It’s about people in this little French town dealing with the return of dead loved ones. It is absolutely NOT your standard zombie-fighting story. It’s more about loss and letting go, or rather not letting go. I guess also there’s a fair helping of secrets and lies. It’s sort of moody and sad. Anyway, I really liked it.
Something I really enjoyed about it is the way the women looked. I couldn’t help but notice that the female characters in the show were NOT presented in an especially “sexy” way. Their clothing and makeup and hair seem to not have been designed to make them look enticing. In fact, none of them wore much noticeable makeup. Some of them had wrinkles, some had dark circles under their eyes, some had moles or other “imperfections”…and they were beautiful. Well, of course they were all attractive. I mean, they’re actors in a TV show. But they weren’t all sexified. They looked like people.
Even the love scenes (some of which even included actual nudity) did not seem to my eye and brain to be designed for enticement. Sure, they could’ve communicated that these people were having sex without having to show it. But it never seemed really gratuitous. It really was part of the story. It was very refreshing.
Also, these female roles were generally not just someone’s wife or girlfriend or mother. I guess you could say they were “strong female characters”. But that’s not something that occurred to me while I was watching it. They were just people—people who had relationships and feelings and actions, and happened to be women. Gee, imagine that.
I guess what I didn't actually say explicitly was that in most of the American TV shows and movies I watch, the women ARE "sexified". So even when they are not doing anything that's specifically sexual, it's almost as if they're still be presented as a sexual enticement - the way they're dressed and made up and the relationships.
Or maybe it's just me. I don't know. Anybody care to comment?