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Aeryn is physically superior to John, having increased senses and a lifetime of intense military training.
The trope of the strong, unemotional man and weaker, but emotionally more mature woman is turned inside-out with John and Aeryn – she can dominate him physically, and he is the one trying to help her get in touch with her emotional side.
In this situation, he is forced to fall back on his intelligence as his chief survival mechanism.
Time and time again, it is John’s intelligence that saves him and the living ship Moya’s crew as he learns how to live in an alien society.
The clone, dubbed “Harvey” by John in an attempt at humor, tortures John from inside his own mind and even forces him to harm those he loves.
Another attempt to force the knowledge out of John’s mind involved his sexual assault at the hands of Commandant Grayza, a female Peacekeeper officer.
John is immediately attracted to Aeryn Sun, but she has very little use for him until he begins to prove his worth as a crew member aboard Moya.
So many gender stereotypes and tropes are chewed up and spat out by ’s power couple that it warrants a second and/or third glance.Grayza had herself implanted with a gland that excretes Heppel Oil, a substance she uses as a date-rape drug.Over and over again, casts Aeryn as the rescuing hero and John in the stereotypical role of the “damsel” in distress.(Insert GIF of John as Eowyn in all of her “I am no bro” glory. If I knew how to GIF, it would ….) In so many formats, the tale of a hard, military man learning to care for others, getting in touch with his emotions, and embracing his inner nurturer is very common.Usually, the romantic love of a good woman is where this process begins, although occasionally, this occurs via a parent/child relationship.