“Planes” movie degrades females with sexist preview

Today, my three young daughters and I saw yet another sexist preview advertising a children’s movie, this one for “Planes.” The scene begins a la “Top Gun” with two male planes flying fast and doing stunts.

Plane One: What’s taking this guy so long? Is he really as good as he says he is?

Plane Two: No, better.

Plane One: Whoa, who was that?

Our Hero (descending fast on top of them): Well, hello ladies. Ready to lose?

Our hero goes on to leave the “ladies” in the dust.

The message is that females are losers, not leaders. They can’t compete.

Here’s the preview:

No female in the preview at all.

If this were one misogynistic joke in one movie, maybe it wouldn’t be that horrible. But sexist jokes dominate movies for kids. Sexism in movies for children is a repetitive pattern. Kids learn from patterns. That’s how brains develop. See the problem?

Take a look at these sexist jokes from “The Lorax,” “Madagascar 3,” and “Pirates.” All this, when kids’ movies already feature so few female characters at all. Is mocking girls a lesson you’d like your children to learn when they go to movies?





8 thoughts on ““Planes” movie degrades females with sexist preview

  1. I agree with you COMPLETELY! This sexist trash came on tv while I was in the kitchen, and I heard the crappy ‘hello LADIES’ thing, and then a few minutes later heard the the first female character is a sour, earth bound truck who is trying to take away the lofty dreams of the main character. OF COURSE – this was written by “MRA’s”, it appears, with every negative female stereotype, which they are trying to drive into children’s’ heads! Women are no fun, there to ruin men’s dreams, of course. I wouldn’t watch the whole film, but read a little more about it – of course the only other female characters are an exotic love interest from Canada (who is disdainful of her Mexican suitor, but won over eventually with a song – more stereotypes), and a treacherous, backstabbing exotic female ‘plane’ who throws her friend under the proverbial bus – because, you know, “women are sneaky b’ches who can’t be trusted, will stab you in the back when you think they pretending to be nice.” MORE STEREOTYPES. All negative. The male characters of course are broken into an arrogant villain, and various under-appreciated, misunderstood men who became amazing winners, when only given the chance…belch. Seriously, Disney, you should be very ashamed!!!

  2. I’m sorry but I don’t understand why this line is such a big deal. It strikes me as though you are trying to find sexism for the sake of it.

    I doubt a film has caused sexism amongst young children. In fact, I’m sure youngs boys have been other young boys girls names for generations.

  3. Just saw the preview on “Jimmy Kimmel” and I am furious!! This kind of contempt for women will now be experienced by millions of people while millions of others laugh, or think they are supposed to laugh. What this does to girls’ self-esteem and boys’ arrogance is immeasurable. We would not accept a racial joke in this way. Where is the outrage!? This is the 21st century. Where has the feminist movement disappeared to?

    • Hi Jennifer,

      The preview for Planes? Its on TV now. Great. UGH. Totally agree with you. and its FOR KIDS!!!


  4. Hey, I just wanted to say I love your blog. I’m only 15, but I notice this sort of thing in movies a lot and it really bugs me.
    And it’s not just harmless ether, kids literally get their impressions of the world from movies like these.
    When I was around 11 years old, I said something really disturbing. My best friend and I where playing with all stuffed animals; we both hated all that “gushy romance stuff”, so we played the “stuffed animal break up game”. We where breaking up another couple, so my friend picked up the boy stuffed animal and threw it across the yard, then he made the girl start crying over her boyfriend and all that. That’s when I said something like:
    “You can’t do that! You have to throw the girl!”
    “Why?” my friend asked.
    “Because the guy will be more sad, he really loves her. The girl loves him too, but she’s mostly just pretty.” I had said.
    “Why can’t the girl love him in the same way?” my friend said.
    “I don’t know. That’s just how it is in movies and stuff.” I had said.
    Now that I’m older, I see what a sexist thing that was to say. It’s really disgusting if you think about it, what I was basically saying is the boy is the only one to feel emotion, while the girl is just a sexual object. I was basically objectifying her! And the worst part is I learned it all from movies: kids movies! And it’s true, in most kids movies the boy protagonist is a complex character, while the female love interest is very flat; she’s pretty and thinks everything the boy does is great (except when she’s “feisty” as you put it, but even then by the end of the movie she is practically following the guy around like a puppy dog). She’s really just there for the boy to lust after. She’s a pretty plot device, nothing else. I mean, look at most kids movies and you see this: How to Train your Dragon (Astrid), Ice Age 4 (Shira), Madagascar 4 (whatever that jaguar’s name was) and so on.
    And kids see these characters and they get their impression of girls from characters like these. I find this really disturbing that females are objectified like this in kids movies.
    Anyways, I just wanted to share my observations on that. As I said before, I love your blog, keep it up and maybe we will start seeing a change!

    • Hi Sophie,

      Your story does not surprise me. Part of the reason I started this blog is because I saw my daughters using “scripted” imaginary play. So sad and messed up! Peggy Orenstein writes about this a lot. Thank yous o much for sharing what you did and for noticing and responding to sexism.


  5. Hi Cat,

    If the plane learns to respect females, that would be something, I suppose. Either way, the preview is its own thing, just like an ad for perfume can be sexist without the actual product being sexist. Most likely, my kids won’t see the movie, but they saw the preview. They will probably see it on TV as well.


  6. We’ll see how this goes. In a good movie, the male protagonist might start off as arrogant a little misogynistic and learn to see the error of his ways after some kind of fall from grace. In a bad movie, the writers don’t even see the problem with what they’ve depicted.

Leave a Reply