Opinion / TV/Movies

Meet the Women of Ghostbusters: A Comics Precedent for an All-Female Team

By now the news has reached the interest that Bridemaids direct Paul Feig may or may not be in conversations with Sony Pictures to helm Ghostbusters 3. For those of us who adore the goofiness of the 80’s movies (Stay Puft Marshmellow man anyone?) it seems like a good choice. With Bridesmaids Feig demonstrated his comic chops, and I have no doubt he would be fully capable of using those same sensibilities to craft a comic successor to the Ghostbusters franchise.

Naturally, however, there have been qualms from certain elements on the internet bemoaning the idea of a Feig directed Ghostbusters movie. Most of this has stemmed from a belief that the director will continue his push to create female-led movies and the public will end up with an all-lady team.

ghostbusters-banner-who-ya-gonna-call-the-future-of-ghostbusters

 

Surprisingly (or not so surprisingly to those of you who heard me gush about this two summers ago) there is already a precedent in the extended Ghosbusters universe for allowing ladies on the team, and Erik Burnham and Dan Schoening’s 2013 comic “The New Ghostbusters” gave the leads of the team to the ladies for several issues. So let me introduce you to the women of Ghostbusters in hopes that Feig will jump on this project and use some of them to lift our hearts.

Melanie Ortiz

MelanieOrtizEvery team needs a no-nonsense member to balance out the wacky antics of everyone else. Okay, so the original Ghosbusters team doesn’t really have a straight-man in it, but Melanie is an FBI agent and can’t really help herself.

Her involvement with the Ghostbusters prior to donning the proton pack, Ortiz only had one incident with the former Ghostbusters – trying to dissuade them from investigating in Roswell. She’s drawn into the team when she witnesses Peter Venkman abducted by a look-a-like ghost, and vows to help rescue the original gang.

She’s fairly no-nonsense, likes to shoot first and ask questions later, and is generally motivated by a desire to help people. She is baasssically a more kick-ass version of Dana Barrett (Sigourney Weaver’s movie character) and has the skills to take the team to a more productive level.

Kiley Griffin

KylieGriffin

Take a moment and imagine if Egon Spengler and Ray Stantz had a baby (you can’t tell me there’s not slash fiction of that already). Kylie Griffin would be that baby.

She’s equal parts nerdy, smart, and obtuse, all skills needed for the manager of Ray’s Occult Books; which was her day job before she steps in to fill the Ghostbusters shoes during their disappearance.  With Ray and Egon missing, Kylie is the only one around who can explain…well anything.

While Kylie can’t live up to the mantle of both Ray and Ego all by herself, her character definitely has some of the best opportunities for humor, with her awkward intelligence a familiar touch.

Of all the lady characters introduced in Burnham and Schoening’s “New Ghosbusters” series, Kylie is the most integral. With her ties to the original team, her quirky attire, and occasional bouts of brilliance, she is the perfect melding of new and old that you might hope to see in Ghostbusters 3.

Janine Melnitz

JanineMelnitzYou couldn’t have a new Ghostbusters team without a familiar face, and Janine Melnitz is the lady to cement the connection between the old and new teams.

Working for the Ghostbusters since the beginning has made her unflappable. Her sardonic exterior is lined with inner steel, and she can take anything that comes after her – even if it’s her ghostly Swedish ancestors forcing her to the Grendel as a right of passage.

While she has made passes at Egon for years, the death of Harold Ramis (Egon) could open up unexplored avenues for the character. Without an un-obtainable man to chase after, Janine might have to face the realities of her life (whatever those may be) and decide where she wants to be in the future. As serious as that sounds, there’s no way it could be anything but humorous as long as it’s a Ghostbusters movie.

Ron Alexander

RonAlexander Sooooo, the lady-led team does have the odd male member, and Ron Alexander is skeazy trouble. He once attempted to create his own team, Ghost Smashers, to compete with the Ghostbusters who had rejected his application. Ron lacked the technical expertise of Egon and Ray, and eventually needed to be rescued by the real team.

His other talents include being able to rub every single person he meets the wrong way, whether they be ghouls or gals. The ladies are especially weary of him (and his sexist comments) but keep him in check with frequent verbal bashings, and frequently saving his life.

He may not have the kind-heartedness of Peter Venkman, but he shares in Venkman’s tendencies for grand delusions. As the macho guy who is continually berated and saved by ladies, Ron Alexander could be comic gold for a Ghostbusters 3.

So there you have it! The women (and Ron) of Ghostbusters. They’re an even stranger combination than the original team, and they still have a few kinks to work out.  But hey, if anyone can work out the kinks Paul Feig can. All we can ask is that he keeps these gals in mind when/if he signs onto the project.

 

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2 thoughts on “Meet the Women of Ghostbusters: A Comics Precedent for an All-Female Team

  1. Hah! Ron was just there because he had on-panel ability to maintain the equipment! Otherwise, the team might well have been all ladies (using Jenny Moran of the Ghostsmashers instead… though that wouldn’t have had any of the abrasive element Ron brought, which is fun to throw into the mix…!)

    But I was happy with it because it seems on the surface to be a gimmick (let’s bring in women!) and it was simply a story where those who got the call – whether through security clearance, knowledge, or being in the right place at the right time – happened to be ladies.

    I don’t think the movie is likely to happen… not because of the direction, but because of the fact it’s a Ghostbusters sequel! lol. That said, if it comes together, I’ll be there opening weekend to see what happens. There are a lot of funny ladies in Hollywood, and that’s all you need for the right Ghostbusters feel: comedy chops.

    Looking forward to seeing what happens! (And thanks for the shout out to the New GB!)

  2. Pingback: The Linkspam of J. Alfred Prufrock (8th August, 2014) | Geek Feminism Blog

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