Strangelove is no exception to this idea. This film is full of male driven sexual innuendos and metaphors and classifies women in several different ways that highly appeal to the male satisfaction.
Starting with the very weapons, the basis of this film, we can see physical representations of men.
Weapons of war, torpedoes, missiles, most guns strongly resemble the male sex organ. The film Dr. Strangelove seems to state the bigger the weapon, the larger the penis. Nothing could have been a better representation of this than the scene where Major Kong is falling from the plane, waving his hat & yee-hawing with excitement? The very angles the camera was shooting at showed Kong riding that large bomb which was cleverly shaped like a large penis, happily falling to his death and about the experience the largest organism of all, an atomic rupture in the earth’s crust.
While this film seems to be focused on all things war, sex is an apparent second priority to war on the characters' list. A scene that really represented this for me was in the war room. Dr. Strangelove suggests that a plan to move selected people into a mine shaft will help to preserve the humane race. The selectivity of these women is done in a very blatant manner Strangelove states “Women selected for breeding must be of a highly stimulating nature, at a ration of ten women for every man.”
General Buck Turgidson and President Murkin Muffley quickly come to the conclusion that this proposal is a grand idea. In the middle of possible annulation from nuclear retaliation, the focus of the conversation is focused on procreation, not preservation.
This film also seems to view woman in two major ways, one as an enemy, who initiates some of this world-collapsing insanity and also as throwaway sexual objects who solely serve the roles of procreation and pleasure.
General Ripper’s insane rants in the in his office during the assault on his base clearly display the film’s best example of women as the enemy. His rant about the fluoridation of the tap water being a Communist plot to take his pure fluids and unpurify them is questioned by Group Captain Mandrake. Mandrake asks him when he first develops this theory to which Ripper replies:
“ I first became aware of it, Mandrake, during the physical act of love. Yes, I had a profound sense of fatigue, a feeling of emptiness followed. Luckily I was able to interpret these feelings correctly. Loss of essence. I can assure you that it has not recurred.
Mandrake. Women, women sense my power and they seek the life essence. I do not avoid women, Mandrake, but I do deny them my essence.”
Women want to steal his
“essence”, while the Communists want to soil his pure fluids. Ripper will not avoid, women altogether, but they are not to be trusted. This comes across as
Ripper having sexual dysfunctions and using women and his Communist conspiracy as a scapegoat which he takes into a realm of insanity. In my opinion, women are in a sense, viewed the same as the Communist are to the viewer; plotting to ruin the strong American man’s way of life by stealing his health, therefore evil. Because women are only viewed as sex objects in this film, it seems fitting that the only female character in the whole film is Turgidson’s “assistant”, Miss Scott. One of her only scenes involve her indoor tanning in a bikini and relaying messages back and forth for the General. This seems to represent to the viewer the overall idea that this woman lives solely to keep her appearance up and be sexually desirable for her man and to wait upon his every need. The messages she relays back should be of great importance to General Turgidson, but