“What? Creepy, disgusting man” (Nadeki, “Pink Panther”)
Feminist film theory has tended to equate spectatorship with the male gaze and display or performance with the female role. Conspicuously superior martial arts performance by persons of either sex should, according to this theory of spectatorship, narrow the apparent gendering of roles in these action films by placing both male and female martial artists in the same frame. Consequently, skilled martial arts performers such as Nadeki Fujimi have an effortlessly androgynous appeal. It may be that the very conventions of the genre invite androgynous identification to a degree unlike almost any other, and this would certainly be consistent with the traditions of wuxia myth and Chinese Opera.