|Episode name pun on: Equal Rights and fights|
|Airdate:||January 5, 2001|
|Director:||Randy Myers and Craig McCracken|
|Writer(s):|| Amy Keating Roders|
"The Headsucker's Moxy"
How did you like Equal Fights?
Equal Fights is episode 12B of The Powerpuff Girls. It aired on January 5, 2001.
The city of Townsville has always been a place where people are satisfied---they get there fair share and help each other out.
While the girls are at school, they receive a call from the Mayor saying that the bank's being robbed, and so they dash into action. The narrator asks what kind of MAN is robbing the bank, but the robber turns out to be a WOMAN named Femme Fatale who demands Susan B. Anthony coins only (since other money has men on it). Right before she can escape, the girls appear on the scene and quickly haul her off to jail.
Femme Fatale claims to the girls that the city of Townsville belittles their talents, also pointing out that female superheroes aren't looked up to as much as male superheroes are. Realizing this shocks Buttercup, causing her to drop Femme Fatale. Before she hits the ground, her fall's broken by a construction worker and she flees, but the girls quickly apprehend her once more. Femme Fatale somehow convinces the girls that sending her to jail would be a blow for all womankind and that they're on the wrong side. They set her free and return home, allowing her to commit more crimes.
At school, the girls scare the boys when one knocks a girl down playing catch and causes much fear for them. Back at home, the Professor is in the middle of cleaning the house and politely asks the girls to clean their room to which he receives a death glare. Later, while destroying her male dolls, Blossom receives a call from the Mayor asking them to save the day. Blossom denies, telling him to go do it himself, and hangs up. Ms. Bellum calls them and asks the girls to meet her in the Mayor's office where they are confronted by both her and Ms. Keane. They talk about the girls' new outlook on life and try to correct it by making them realize that the boy who knocked the girl down did it by accident and was only playing with her. The two also explain that Utonium only asked for them to clean their bedroom while he did all the other chores and that the mayor couldn't save the city because he doesn't have superpowers.
While the girls realize that they overreacted, they still point out that Femme Fatale's the only real female villain in town, and Mrs. Bellum tells the Girls that they didn't stop her, which Blossom justifies by saying that all girls have to look out for each other, only for a voice to go "Oh really?" and three other women come forward: a female bank employee whose bank Femme Fatale stole Susan B. Anthony coins from, a policewoman whose arm Femme Fatale broke, and a teenaged girl whose hairstyle Femme Fatale apparently copied (the girl gets looked at funny for it, as it was petty). The three women ask the girls if Femme Fatale was looking out for them when she did these particular things to them. The intervention helps the girls realize that not only did they go overboard in their actions, but that Femme Fatale is a hypocrite.
At a coin convention, Femme Fatale is confronted by Blossom, Bubbles, and Buttercup, who question her if she even knows who Susan B. Anthony was. When it becomes apparent that she doesn't, the girls decide to tell Femme Fatale the real story of her:
- For a very long time, women weren't allowed to do much of anything, which Susan B. Anthony knew was wrong--in 1872, she had broken the law by voting (which American women didn't have the right for until August 18th of 1920). However, while Susan B. Anthony was found guilty of what she did, the authorities wanted to show her leniency because she was a woman. But she didn't want any kind of special treatment, she wanted to be treated equal and demanded that she be sent to prison just like any man who had broken the law.
After saying that last part, Blossom says, "And that's what we're gonna do to you!" The sisters beat Femme Fatale up and send her to prison, where she gives a very stereotypical complaint about how the uniform makes her look (she claims that horizontal stripes make her look fat).
When the narrator closes the episode, he states that there are no chick narrators and something was thrown at him.
- There are two morals derived from this episode:
- 1.) Feminism is ultimately about gender equality and not necessarily women getting special treatment and/or being superior to/sexist towards men.
- 2.) Like in Members Only, men and women should be treated equally and given equal opportunities for the same things.
- While Femme Fatale raises a good point in that female superheroes usually aren't as popular as male superheroes and that heroes like Supergirl and Batgirl are basically just extensions of their male counterparts (Superman and Batman, respectively), there are plenty of other female superheroes besides Wonder Woman who aren't intended as direct extensions to already existing male superheroes.
- Femme Fatale also points out how villainy is similarly dominated by men like heroism is, even though there are actually tons of female supervillains. This may be because, in the series, most of the villains that the girls go up against are guys—Femme Fatale was just a one-shot female villain while the only actual recurring female villains in the series are Princess Morbucks (who Femme Fatale calls "that little brat") and Sedusa (who Femme Fatale calls "the chick in the underwear").
- Femme Fatale points out that while Superman and Batman already have their own movies, the Powerpuff Girls themselves don't. The series eventually got its very own feature-length film in 2002.
- Additionally, one attempt at a Catwoman movie was made in 2004 and a live-action Wonder Woman movie was released in 2017.
- It's never actually explained why Femme Fatale is a misandrist. One popular fan theory is that she was mistreated by some male figure in her life, and it caused her great emotional discomfort. Given her selfish nature, it's likely that she simply blamed men in order to excuse her crimes.
- This is the only major appearance of Femme Fatale. After this, she's never mentioned or seen again in the series until the last episode (The Powerpuff Girls Rule!).
- In political terms, this episode is the last episode to air during Bill Clinton's time as the U.S.A. President. Bill Clinton was the President of the United States from January 20, 1993, until January 20, 2001, and "The Powerpuff Girls" was created during Bill Clinton's term as United States President.
- The $100 bill in the episode is based on the real world US $100 bill.
- The teenage girl who talks to Blossom, Bubbles, and Buttercup is wearing a white t-shirt with a picture of Blossom on the front of it. The teenager also bears a striking resemblance to Femme Fatale as well (just younger with either acne or freckles).
- At the beginning of the episode, the trees outside the Girls house are pink.
- The episode has met with controversy, as there's been arguing over whether or not the episode sends out a positive message of feminism. Lauren Faust has even confirmed that this episode was an old shame of hers, as she wasn't sure if the episode was a good way to teach feminism to children.
- This is one of two episodes that focus on gender discrimination (sexism). The other being Members Only.
- Although "The Headsucker's Moxy" and this episode aired on January 5, 2001, they were made in 2000.