Some episodes of Outlander Season 2 will be set in France, in the Court of Louis XV, and designer Terry Dresbach has made a whole new wardrobe for the protagonists. Louis XV, known as Louis the Beloved, was a monarch of the House of Bourbon who ruled as King of France from 1 September 1715 until his death on May 10 1774. Make no mistake, the animation and the music are gorgeous, Belle is a great character, and the dynamic between Belle and Gaston gives us some interesting scenes. Unless I missed something, Beauty and the Beast only features two named female characters: Belle and Mrs Potts. Without this element, Gaston is a fantastic villain character, precisely because he’s so normal. But that doesn’t change the fact that Belle and her father are the only people in the village to see the problems with his behavior. The movie has a good role model in Belle, and the animation and score are so wonderful that it’s painful for me to criticize it, but once we dig under the surface of the story, it all starts to fall apart.
Can you articulate for me why you find “not like other girls” to be a problematic trope specifically for feminists?
Harry Potter on the contrary was still surrounded by interesting full-rounded *male* characters.
Belle really makes me torn — I loved her character so much as a little girl, because there was nothing more *I* too loved doing than going to the library and staggering home with a stack of books as tall as I was. Or 1001 Night in which the Sultan repents his sins, thanks Scheherazade for curing him of his own madness and swears that she will never have to fear for her life again. This starts to change when Belle tells him off: he learns that a woman can be as strong as he is and can challenge him and show as much power. Ultimately, he embraces a whole host of character traits that are generally associated with the feminine archetype (as seen in the Sansa Stark posts): he becomes caring, unafraid to show affection or vulnerability (even in front of another alpha male like Gaston), or to present himself curteous. I think this is a strong feminist statement in that not only underlines the importance of women empowering themselves, but also of men embracing personality traits traditionally associated with femininity without finding them degradating but, on the contrary, a source of human growth. Also, I think Disney should show how a woman can save guys she loves platonically with her knitting needle as opposed to her sword (happens in Six Swans). Oh, and the young King falls in love with the heroine’s character and goodness as much as he falls in love with her beauty. Actually, the beast made the ultimate sacrifice for Belle- he let her go because he loved her. When people are emotional (like how Beast was in the beginning) they say things they don’t mean. No way is this Stockholm Syndrome, Belle willfully stayed, but at the same time she kept her ground.
True story: I used to give up on my Sims once they were married because what was the point? This week, fans of Outlander were rewarded with the wedding of Claire (Caitriona Balfe) and Jamie (Sam Heughan), because however abrupt that union may have been in the story, for those who know the book, it's when things start getting really good. Terry Dresbach: I read the books when they first came out — I must have read them about 10 times by now — and it wasn't until I was actually doing the show that I realized I couldn't remember any of the costumes as Diana [Gabaldon, the author] described them. PS: The dress has a more modern look than what's described in the book; what were you inspired by?
I wanted to do a metallic, I wanted to do a silver; we have pages and pages and pages all over our walls of every conceivable, beautiful 18th-century gown.
TD: If one person had made it, it would have taken about 3,000 hours — it took us about 3,000 hours, four months. TD: It's a pivotal moment for Jamie, because up to this point in the story, he's an outlaw, he's a stable guy .
TD: We have a remarkable aging and dyeing department within the costume department that hits our fabrics with blowtorches, [and] the kind of spray guns you use to paint a car.
TD: For about a 100 years, when I have watched any movie with Ron that has redcoats in it, he starts yelling at the screen, "You see?
TD: I started designing France about a year ago, because it is going to be so enormous and so huge.
PS: And as we saw in the love scenes of the wedding episode, sometimes it's all about what's not being worn. The ending of the last book An Echo In The Bone was a motherfucker of a cliffhanger and left me breathless..
This era was defined by comfort, luxury, and by Madame de Pompadour, Louis XV’s most famous mistress.
But although Belle is intelligent and ambitious and wanting adventure, she’s explicitly set up as being different because of it. The only other female characters, apart from background faces in the town, are the triplets who swoon over Gaston, the wardrobe, and the feather duster who flirts with Lumiere.

All the other young women are represented by the triplets, characters who, like Gaston, only judge based on beauty, while the beautiful Belle is able to care about deeper and more important things. I just can’t because the Beast actually keeps Belle with the thought of making her love him. Stories like Jaime&Brienne that almost start out like this, but then turn into a 2 POW bonding and falling in love. It reinforces the old stereotype that there’s a heart of gold inside troubled, angry men, you just have to nurture him and seek it out and be patient and soothing. If at first he saw her as a tool to break the curse, that’s the moment when he actually falls in love with her, when he appreciates her strength and bravery and sees her as a person. And he does not see them as a source of shame or degradation (as mysoginist Gaston does), but as a growth, as a means to empowerment and to be able to share a mutual communication with a woman he considers his equal. The old black-and-white alpha male archetype (Gaston) is unsuccesful, while a more balanced male is what helps the story work with a well-balanced female. The heroine in this fairy tale might look like the girl who sits in the corner knitting quietly, but she is a determinator of the highest order and won’t give up trying to save her brothers even when execution is staring her in the face. I am pretty sure Belle and Beast would both enjoy going on adventures, exploring, and other amazing things.
Looking at it from my romance writer angle, it’s a perfect alpha male knocked to his knees by falling in love with a strong woman story. The romance heats up with the marriage (as do the sex scenes), and someone who has been deeply involved in the show's big event is costume designer Terry Dresbach, who also happens to be the wife of show creator Ronald D.
And I went back through it and looked at all the varied descriptions, and realized that, like so many fans, I had my own pictures in my head.
Discussions come up from people who are involved in the show — studio people, network people, whoever — who you listen to and get an understanding of what the viewers will also see.
It is about nine to 12 yards of fabric that is laid out across the floor and then pleated by hand. They have a room that they go into with masks, and they spray everything down with paint and dye that makes it look dirty.
There's a little bit of panic in the back of my throat always about how the hell we're going to pull that off, because we will have to build it all. Those are things that I have a wonderful set team [for], and I let them manage all of those little bits, and I try not to know about any of it. At eighteen, he studied in Paris at the University, living with his father’s cousin, Jared Fraser.
She doesn’t fit in, because nobody else she knows could possibly also like reading, or dreaming, or want their life to come to something. Their whole role in the movie is to swoon over Gaston, declaring Belle crazy for rejecting him. Harry Potter is the ultimate boy who is unlike other boys…his cousin Dudley represents all Muggle boys and is pretty atrocious. I agree that the triplets are particularly noticeable, but is their stereotype of feminity really worse than Gaston and his crew of bar pals’ caricature of masculinity? I find this post’s point unreasonable as they only focus on how different Belle is from all the girls in her village, rather than the actual case of her being more intelligent than practically EVERYONE in her village.
Their relationship is completely unbalanced, with him – male – holding all the power and she – female – being his hostage.
And he does so despite social expectations – because let’s face it, the whole household short of Chip kept seeing Belle as a means to an end, while the Beast learned to see past that. Once he is mature enough to embrace his feelings without perceiving them as a weakness, he goes as far as sacrificing everything letting Belle go on the very last day of his magical deadline without any guarantees she would come back in time or at all (unlike in the original fairy tale, where he has her promise she would come back – and we have no reason to assume Belle would without the treat of impending doom).
When I think about it, there are so few stories about married women that aren’t about motherhood. So what you finally see is sort of a combination of the pictures I've always had in my head and the story that Ron is telling and the place we're in. We had to build a special stool, like a sawhorse — right after the scene, there would be someone who would run up on set so she could lean against it.
So we are currently working on making about 1,000 extras costumes, and all of our lead actress's clothes have been designed. And the beginning definitely didn't disappoint one bit.After having spent some time in the 18th century with Jamie and Claire, we jumped into the "future" Scotland with Roger and Bree.
She was a great patron of artists and artisans of the time, favoring painters like Francois Boucher and furniture makers like Jean-Francois Oeben.
And when he talks to her, he crowds her, leaning over her, invading her space, interrupting her when she tries to speak, and not actually listening to a word she says.
Literature is filled with people who aren’t like everyone around them, or who seem to have larger dreams, bigger ambitions, greater talents, deeper sensibilities.

Even as I write this, though, I realize that the movie does set up a certain set of traits that men and women have, and never really challenges this binary. We chatted with Dresbach about her approach to Claire's and Jamie's wedding-day attire, as well as lots of questions you've probably had yourself while watching the series, like how exactly does one get into a kilt? But this is the moment in the story where he steps up, and we see that he's going to be the man of this series. A belt is laid down, then you lie down on the fabric, belt it around you, stand up, then start tucking and pinning it into whatever shape it is that you particularly like.
I've had many, many embarrassing moments of trying to super-glue little patches, triangles of fabric across women. In 1740, escaping from Jonathan Randall, Jamie fled to France to join his best friend, Ian Murray, as a mercenary in the French army, where he stayed for two years. She was also largely responsible for the king’s support of the Sevres porcelain manufacture. They’re nameless, personality-less figures meant to show us that the normal girls swoon over Gaston, while Belle, our intelligent heroine, sees him as the jerk that he is. I suppose getting taken prisoner by a beast, falling in love with him, and fighting off Gaston count as something of an adventure, but it doesn’t feel like enough.
If he hadn’t been beasted, the prince would be pretty similar to Gaston, and his character development never moves that far from the extremely manly end of the spectrum. Read on for fascinating answers about that, including the historical costume detail that other series always seem to get wrong.
I wanted to try to get that glow [because] Ron wanted to the wedding in candlelight, and I wanted something that would just shimmer.
And he says, "I'm only going to marry you if they got you a dress, a proper dress." He insisted on proper clothes, and to be married in a church — what's he going to do, show up in the same raggedy clothes? I'm really lucky in that I know the book — I know they're at the French court, I know they're at dinner parties in an apartment, I know she's working at a hospital. He returned to Scotland in 1742, but still he had to live as a fugitive and someone hit Jamie in the back of the head with an axe. Clearly I need to take a sick day and go home and re-watch this until I’ve fully reconciled all my conflicting feelings on this movie. It's really interesting to see how they have personalized it, as real Highlanders would have.
You send racks of brand-new clothing in — we make everything on the show — and these things come back on the other side, now really, really old, and really, really dirty. I know the basic story, so it allows me to go, "She needs this, she needs that, he needs this, he needs that." It is going to be so massive. Once she reaches the castle, she never goes anywhere except for a brief trip back to her village — her world is barely any less narrow than it is at the very beginning of the movie.
Sam and I worked very carefully to come up with a costume that would still be believable, that he would wear this, and that it wasn't just some ridiculous thing where you're going, "Where the hell did he get that from?" And if you notice, he wears his kilt very differently at the wedding. There were two things that Ron was absolutely fanatical about: the color of the redcoat uniforms and that everything was dirty.
Look how clean he is!" Then he gives me long lectures about how the soldiers had to sew up the rips and tears.
We wanted to really give a sense of strength and stability, and widen his already incredibly wide shoulders. So we get to Outlander, and he gets all those movies and he plays them for me, because I didn't get the lesson the first 30 times, to just make sure I understand. And he's got a beautiful stock around his neck with lace trim and a diamond on at his neck. This is the point where we start to understand that this man is not what we thought he was. I can't believe Diana couldn't have created a likeable character, worthy of being Jamie daughter.
We also have Willy and Ian in the past, and while they can be interesting to read about to a certain degree, I hated that Diana gave them so much room as she did.
I can tolerate them, but not too much.When Diana also involves people they may or may not marry, their kids, sick people and God know what else, there is just too many too keep up with. I have no interest whatsoever in reading about every single derail about the 18th century lif.
To tell you the truth, I wouldn't have any interest whatsoever of these books if it wasn't for the one and only; Jamie Alexander Malcolm MacKenzie Fraser.

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