Discussion Thread: Rape Culture in Rom-Coms

[Content Note: This thread will contain lots of discussion about stalking, hostility to consent, NiceGuyism, hostility to consent, and other facets of rape culture. Please assess your spoons carefully and proceed accordingly.]

I was talking to a friend recently about the 1982 Scott Baio film Zapped!, in which Baio's character acquires telekinetic powers during an experiment and uses them to, I shit you not, blow girls' clothes off. It put me in mind of this old post and the associated thread, in which we discussed how there's a rape in Sixteen Candles, just tucked in there at the end, like another hilarious twist in a teen rom-com, and the threads we've had about how the immensely popular Superbad is a film about two guys trying to get girls drunk enough to "have sex with" them, and this thread, and dozens of others like it, where we've talked about how crimes like stalking are frequently portrayed as romantic and/or a normal part of courtship.

So, here is a thread to compile all the many ways rape culture plays out in romantic comedies and serves to normalize hostility to consent and healthy relationship dynamics, even in films we may like and enjoy. I, for example, have an intractable fondness for Love, Actually, even though it is super problematic in so many ways specific to this thread.

What films can you think of that include stalking, spying, snooping, coercion, sexual assault, rape, etc. are played out as a totally noncontroversial part of courtship?

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