Betty is enslaved, while also being the slave master. This is what I hate about her. She wants freedom and agency when it is convenient. She wants to come down off the pedestal, but she seems unwilling, at least at this point in the narrative, to give up the privilege that comes with being idealized.
I, too, have been bristling at Betty's bad behaviour for some time. I don't think I'm alone in that; there has been something altogether vicious about the way the show has been writing her character of late, something biting and mean about every word that comes out of her mouth. Until about the middle of season two, I could have chalked this up to what I personally felt were the subpar talents of January Jones, but she has grown into Betty's shoes. And in that context I'm starting to blame both the viewers and the writers for all the vitriol hurled Betty's way.
In the week leading up to the release of the film Revolutionary Road, there was quite a media ballyhoo about Kate Winslet reading Betty Friedan's 1963 feminist classic The Feminine Mystique to prepare for her role as April Wheeler, as well as Winslet's declaration (albeit tepid) that she is a feminist ("I think I probably am. I mean, not in a bra-burning way. But I think I am a feminist, yeah.") Now that the film is in theatres, the connection between the film and feminism has continued to be the subject of much conversation. Over at HuffPo, blogger Melissa Silverstein goes so far as to write that the film "should be required watching for all young women who think that feminism is irrelevant." But in all this talk about feminism and Revolutionary Road, there hasn't been much dialogue about film's relationship to its source, the 1961 Richard Yates novel of the same name, or the way that the character of Frank Wheeler has been re-imagined. Casting a critical eye on the way the novel has been adapted calls into question just how revolutionary the film really is... More after the jump...
Warning: Major spoilers ahead for both novel and film.