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part of a small rebellion | by maryann johanson

female gaze extra: on the hotness of thigh holsters

At the tender age of eight I was ruined forever for sex with anyone other than pirates and scoundrels by Han Solo. I am now irrevocably imprinted with the impression that there is nothing hotter than a thigh holster. *drool*

Even this Han Solo toy is extra hot thanks to the inclusion of the thigh holster:

And then came Mal Reynolds to seal the deal:

So then I’m sitting there watching Knight and Day and being utterly bored by it when I got to enjoy a brief moment of turned-on-ness thanks to this fetish of mine. Out of nowhere, someone we’re not supposed to be expecting (even though it’s totally obvious he’ll be back) reappears on the scene, and the camera — ostensibly drawing out the moment of suspense before he is revealed — travels up his leg and lingers for just a moment on a thigh holster we had not previously seen him wearing.

This is what went through my head: “Mysterious black shoe? Well, of course it’s Tom Cruise. I know it’s Tom Cruise. Tight black pants? Yeah, that’s definitely Tom Cruise’s leg. *yawn* Boring. Is there anyone less hot than Tom Cruise? There is no question whatsoever that it’s Tom Cruise– hello! Thigh holster! Hot! *swoon* Oh, right, it’s Tom Cruise. Boring.”

It was nice, for a moment. But even with the thigh holster:

the affect is still somewhat less than that of a Han Solo or Mal Reynolds.

Mmm, Han Solo…

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  • Nadia

    That thing with Tom Cruise just proves that it’s not enough to have the thigh holster, you also need the hansoloness or the malness to pull it off.

    This female gaze thing you’re doing? I.am.loving.it.

  • Matt C

    I agree, only bad boys like Han Solo and Malcolm Reynolds can pull off a thigh holster and make it look cool. Tom Cruise… well, that’s a different story.

  • Bassygalore

    Han Solo….first space cowboy and just d@mn fine. *pant*

  • Ide Cyan
  • Arco

    Well, being a straight male, I don’t quite get the same type of thing from this (don’t have a thing for the holsters either) but…well, it’s Han Solo and Mal Reynolds. Two of the coolest characters ever created played by two of the coolest actors ever to grace the screen. What’s not to love?

    (And let’s face it, Mal’s roots kinda go back to Han, don’t they?;)

  • dafydd

    Don’t forget both incarnations of Starbuck and Apollo and their thigh-holsters of cool.

    Plus, for the empowered female gazer who feels the urge to strap on their own thigh holster…


  • Ide Cyan

    I was looking at the ThinkGeek website (for their Lost Alarm Clock) and peeked over to the Star Wars section and found this:

    A thigh holster purse!

  • Sandy

    I’m with Nadia – these female gaze easter eggs are mighty tasty. Thank you!!


  • t6

    You know, I’ve been thinking a lot about Brett Easton Ellis’s comment that women can’t direct because they lack the male gaze.

    My thoughts started off like this:
    1) Brett, I can call you Brett right? Brett, you either haven’t read Laura Mulvey, or you aren’t very smart…because you didn’t really understand what she was saying.
    2) A lot of other feminist film scholars have challenged the notion that the directorial gaze must always be male. If you are going to start talking feminist film theory…you might want to be a bit better informed.

    but then I pondered a bit more. And I don’t think the problem that Ellis and people like him have is really about whether or not one must have a male gaze to make film. I think they are fundamentally uncomfortable with the idea that they might be objects of a gaze rather than solely subjects of them. Women and minorities are used to the double-counciousness that makes us aware of being subjects but also objects. We are aware that we do not always control our object status…that we can be objectified (and not in an empowering way). Majoritarian men, on the whole, are not used to this knowledge…realizing that their could be an object definition of them that they cannot control I think makes those who haven’t worked through these issues uncomfortable…because it puts a few cracks in blinders of privilege that patriarchy conveys.

  • Lady Tenar

    You know, Han Solo just never did it for me. (But then again, I’m also probably the only geek ever that feels pretty “meh” about Star Wars.) I was all about Indiana Jones though. Back in those prepubescent days when I didn’t quite know why Raiders of the Lost Ark was so exciting in a way that had nothing to do with action or melting faces, but I just knew that I wanted to watch it again. Badly.

    However, I’m 100% with you on the utter hotness of Mal Reynolds. And about the complete and utter sexlessness of Tom Cruise. Never understood his appeal.

  • I_Sell_Books

    Oh yes.

  • Kate

    Just the other day I made a comment about a male celebrity and referred to him as “Han-Solo-Pants-Hot,” a remark that was immediately understood by my (female) friend.

    ‘Cause the thigh holster is so so good…but don’t discount the Solo pants themselves, with that stripe up the side!!

  • Teeny Gozer

    I recently discovered your blog via a Dr. Who review and have been happily skimming entries over the past few days whenever I had a free moment. I adore your Female Gaze posts!

    In the grand tradition of hot SF males who come well-equipped with thigh holsters, I give you: Lt. Col. John Sheppard and his thigh holster!


  • MaryAnn

    ‘Cause the thigh holster is so so good…but don’t discount the Solo pants themselves, with that stripe up the side!!

    I don’t discount anything about Han Solo. He’s absolutely perfect.

  • Cate

    Just want to ditto the John Crichton and John Sheppard comments. Ben Browder especially needs his very own female gaze entry.

  • allochthon

    Alex Kingston is sporting an awfully sexy thigh holster in the current Doctor Who eps…

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