I guess castration & death doesn’t make for a good Dreamworks movie

There’s a new Pixar Dreamworks [Ed: Oops. Sorry, Pixar] movie coming out about bees called (shock!) Bee Movie. It stars Jerry Seinfeld and Renee Zellweger, and the preview contained a humorous scene about manly worker bees doing manly work in manly hard hats. Just one problem – worker bees are NOT MALE. No, every single worker bee throughout the long and illustrious history of bees has been a (sterile) female.

There’s only a few male bees in a hive, and their lives are somewhat less than glamorous. After a newly hatched queen kills her sisters and mother, she rises for her first and only mating flight. The drone pursue her and mount her one by one. After they ejaculate, they fall backwards, ripping off their phallus, and die twitching upon the ground. That’s it. That’s the only role that males have within a beehive.

It’s not like real bees aren’t dramatic, what with the sister-killing and the wriggle-dancing and workers dropping dead of exhaustion. Why can’t Pixar Dreamworks make at least a token nod to the kick-ass lives of real bees? At least make them the right gender.

But then again, we can’t have a movie about a bunch of girls, now, can we? Especially girls with no romantic interests (other than the occasional phallus-ripping.) That simply wouldn’t do at the box office. Is there a Joss Whedon signal that we can beam into the sky? He would make the best bee movie ever.

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17 Responses to I guess castration & death doesn’t make for a good Dreamworks movie

  1. [...] movie days of male cows with udders Wow, and I thought I was being a little hyperbolic on the sexism in Bee Movie. Not so, my precious, not so. Warner Brothers president of production Jeff Robinov explicitly [...]

  2. Sam says:

    For a much better fictionalization of the, um, secret lives of bees, allow me to recommend Clan Apis, a comic about a honeybee colony, by biologist Jay Hosler. It features lots of wriggle-dancing and hard-working lady bees, though it is a family book and somewhat glosses over the deadly mating part.

  3. Comics AND biology! I’ll definitely check it out.

  4. [...] MESS with the biology A quick follow up to my previous rant on Seinfeld’s Bee Movie. The movie is getting so-so reviews. And Dana Stevens of Slate picks [...]

  5. some rain says:

    Just a note for accuracy: the movie is from DreamWorks, NOT Pixar.

  6. Thanks! I have corrected the error.

  7. jennifer says:

    Hollywood can’t be bothered with science. Or history. Or accuracy. Bee Movie could’ve been positively epic Greek tragedy in scope; the matricide, the sister-cide, the deadly dance of seduction. Instead it’s bees in hard hats who want their honey back.

  8. [...] Up: Seeking scientific accuracy in Hollywood is a fool’s game. I’ve frothed at the terrible biology of Bee Movie and gnashed at the poor oceanography of Transformers and muttered at the unfortunate [...]

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