I’m Watchin’ Thangs

Hi there!

Have some mini reviews:



The Expanse:

Image result for the expanse season two

This is an extremely mini review, as I’ve not actually sat down to watch an entire episode, even as they keep accumulating on my DVR. As I said before, I don’t usually watch Space Operas, not because I consider them uninteresting, but because I usually don’t have time, and just end up missing the entire series. The same thing happened here, with The Expanse. I also haven’t read any of the books in the series by James Corey, so I don’t know how close a resemblance the show has to those. I have to confess I’ve only watched the trailers and a few snippets. I certainly like what I see and the show is blowing it up on the diversity front. The show has not neglected to round out the cast with Latinxs, Black people, and different Asians. So if that’s  important for you, then check it out.

The character in the photo above is the six foot tall, New Zealander, Frankie Adams who plays the bad ass Bobbie Draper, and already she’s my favorite character, even though I’ve seen nothing more than snippets of her scenes. If you liked Vasquez from the movie Aliens, you will love Bobbie, who is continuing that grand tradition of having bad ass, WoC warriors in space.

The show appears to have improved quite a bit since that first season. At some point I going to need to sit down and binge the Hell out of this show, and give a more in depth review.

The Magicians:

Image result for magicians season 2

This is the first episode of the second season and I remain mostly unimpressed. It’s not that it’s a bad show, because there’s plenty in it for the discerning viewer, it’s just that it has several competing tones, which can be kind of jarring if that’s not something you’re used to. On the one hand the show wants to have a lighthearted, jokey, bantering feel, most especially in the scenes where Elliot, Margot, Penny, Quentin and Alice are in Fillory, a fairytale world mentioned prominently in season one, and the real world travails of Quentin’s friend Julia, who got kicked out of Brakebills last season, and had been fumbling to get back into the magical community, ever since.

Julia’s storyline is dark, depressing ,and unnerving, as she seems to spend the majority of her time being sexually, and emotionally abused, and belittled by various characters. Last season, she was emotionally manipulated by a Hedge witch named Marina, and raped by a creature she thought was a god, after she joined a cult. This season, the person trying to both sexually, and emotionally abuse her, is named The Beast. With a name like that you would have to be a complete jackass to trust him, nevertheless, I wish we got to see a lot less of him. (As with all TV villains, he thinks he’s pretty charming, and talks too damned much.)

There’s also a third thread where we keep flipping back and forth, from Fillory to Brakebills, as Quentin, Margot, and Alice, investigate what’s happening in Fillory with Dean Fogg, and that’s confusing and  doesn’t mesh well with the rest of the episode.

You cannot have this rather casual and jokey attitude sitting side by side with the constant degradation of this other character. It just makes the whole show feel bad.  Julia seems like she’s in another show entirely. I’m not sure where they’re going with her storyline, but I wish it wasn’t. Its distracting from what is otherwise a mildly entertaining show about magic.

In the first season, we spent our time establishing various characters, and setting up for season two. This second season is going to be more like the second book in the series, called The Magician’s Land, where the four major characters become the Kings and Queens of Fillory,  except for Penny who doesn’t get a crown. I was mildly peeved by this. Even though Penny is still an asshole, I feel he deserves a crown too, and why was the lone character of color left out of it.

The show gets LGBT representation right in Elliot, but gets a  black hashmark for killing off all the other gay characters (including the lone Black woman, this show has ever had, in season one). It also gets a demerit for making the one  PoC a complete arsehole (Penny), and the other PoC is the Dean of the school. Putting the lone Black person in charge of giving orders, is a trope a show adds when it wants to have diversity, but has no clue how to write characters of color.

There were some things I enjoyed, though. I liked some of the humor. The idea that they could only win their crowns by passing some elaborate tests, only for the tests to turn about to be 90’s pop culture trivia questions, was pretty funny. And of course, I love Elliot, who is always saying the absolutely correct things, at the correct times. He’s the best written character on the show. Snarky and intelligent, but vulnerable, when he needs to be.  Quentin has improved since last season, becoming more sure of himself, but I credit the actor for that, not the writers.

Like I said, its not a bad show, and there’s something in it worth watching for the casual viewer, but the tone of the show is wildly uneven, as it swings between humor, and sexual violence, and I don’t like that.

Legion:

Image result for legion tv series

Well, I watched two episodes of this show and I think I understand whats going on, or at least what the creators are trying to do, while also trying to have a plot. The first episode may appear to be plot free, but it does have one. The title character has been institutionalized for attempting to commit suicide. While there, he’s diagnosed with schizophrenia and paranoia. I don’t know how accurate the depiction of 1960’s  mental institutions is, but I didn’t have a problem with the depiction, outside of the usual tropes of “crazy patients”, in the background.

While David is  there, he meets a pretty blond girl, that he falls in love with, while he’s being hunted by some type of clandestine Federal organization that wants to study him, because they believe he’s a powerful mutant. This entire plot takes two episodes to resolve because we keep taking detours into David’s mind, as he hallucinates, imagines scenarios, or just remembers things. We spend a lot of time in David’s mind and I think the purpose is to make the audience feel as disoriented about the things happening to him, as David feels. It certainly is a different approach to a Marvel character.

Now, in the comic books, David is the son of Charles Xavier and Moira McTaggert(?) and is the most powerful telepathic being on Earth, more powerful than his father, which is why he spent the early part of his life in a vegetative state, unable to cope with his abilities. In all fairness, I haven’t read about this character in a very long time, so I’m sure he’s gone through a bunch of reiterations since the 9os.

I was reluctant to approach this show. I generally avoid shows that involve blatant displays of mental illness, especially after my own bout with mental illness in my twenties (which has since been in a kind of remission), but the fear that that state of mind could reoccur, is always present, especially when watching shows where mental illness is heavily featured. I went through some very, very rough times , and don’t like to be reminded of one of the worse periods of my life.

The closer the TV depiction of mental illness is to reality, the more I dislike it, and I was expecting to dislike this show, but it turned out to be not that bad. At least not for me, but if you’re a person currently going through some mental shit, you might want to use caution, when watching this. A lot of the show’s visuals are very disorienting. I don’t know that I’ll make  regular viewing of it, but I don’t dislike the show. The best thing I can say about it is that it’s visually spectacular.

 

Humans: 

Image result for humans season 2

Actually this is a very interesting show, in its second season. Yes, it’s about sentient robots, but that’s where the  comparison, between it and Westworld, end. This  British show takes place in the real world, and recounts how humans and robots interact, as robots begin to displace human beings from working life, and how that interaction is unsettled, when some of the robots start to become self aware.

In the first season, we followed a group of self aware robots (Niska, Mia, Leo, and Max) who’d been split up and were trying to find each other. They’d all been created by the same man, now long dead. This season, one of the robots (Niska) uploads their self-awareness code into a system that all of the robots (called Synths) have to occasionally link to, and more of them become aware. Now they have to deal with not just this new awareness, but what kind of relationships do they want to have with humans.

The show also deals with the fallout for the Hawkins family’s interaction with Leo and his family, last season. How does this affect them? What do the children think? How does their interaction with self aware robots affect their future, and will the government find out they were involved? Added to that, the Hawkins parents are still in therapy, dealing with the husband’s brief infidelity with Mia, something I found to be deeply interesting. Did he or did he not cheat on his wife, and how does she process what he did, when he says it didn’t mean anything.?

There are several threads we follow through the episode.  We follow Niska, who is investigating human love, as she picks up a girl at a nightclub, and goes on trial for killing a man. I still don’t see how she can get away with appearing human  because she doesn’t talk or move like one. Why the humans don’t see it, is one of the show’s bigger mysteries.

There’s a secondary story involving a Dr. Morrow played by Carrie-Ann Moss (from Daredevil). She’s investigating how and why the Synths have become aware, and what they want. At some point during the season she will meet up with the more militant Niska.

There’s a third storyline involving Detective Karen Voss, who is also a Synth married to, and masquerading as a human. Its interesting because her husband knows what she is and still loves her anyway. She in turn appears to be very much in love with him, too. There’s also Hester, a newly sentient Synth, who is still discovering who and what she is.

This show is a lot less action packed than Westworld, and asks different types of questions on the nature of sentience. Its more thoughtful, and philosophical, and states its ideas much more blatantly. There are certainly fewer shootouts. There are also more PoC, but the narrative doesn’t explore that particular angle, in depth. Its mostly left for the viewer to suss out how race relations work in a society where robot servants look like any race of people. Do the robots of color get abused, or exploited more, I wonder?  I’m still trying to figure out whose idea was it to make them so human-looking, and why. The Synths don’t behave like humans, though. They speak and behave smoothly, stiffly, and slowly, so its fairly easy to tell they’re not human.

Taboo:

Image result for taboo episode 6

I don’t even know how to describe this show anymore, as it has gone completely off the deep end, with wild things happening in every episode. But this week’s episode was actually refreshing in that James Delaney’s enemies have finally caught up with him and brought him low. From the jump, James has been three steps ahead of everyone but this episode proves he’s at least not invulnerable or omniscient.

There’s also the added factor that he seems deeply fascinating to many of the women in the narrative. From the little mulatto girl who thinks he’s going to take her to America, to the actress that lives with him and pines for his attention, to his own half-sister Zilpha who, in a fit of cold rage, just killed her boozy, abusive husband.

Zilpha arrives at James house, in the middle of the night, and says she did just as he asked her to do. Since we’ve never heard James express any such sentiment, its no wonder he begins to question her sanity, and if so, is it his fault, although this doesn’t stop the two of them from getting their freak on, after her husband’s funeral. Its not meant to last however, as James, hallucinating that his mother is drowning him, tries to choke Zilpha.

There’s a new player in town, an African man named Chichester, and he’s asking questions about the ship that sank with all hands,  but from  which James conveniently escaped. This is a character who pulls no punches, as he blatantly  taunts the Company men, reminding them at every opportunity that he was once a slave. His investigations into the East India Company’s illegal slave trade prompts them to attack James by burning his newly bought boat. There’s also the matter of some stolen gunpowder that James is attempting to sell to the Americans. So now James has plenty of goods to sell but no way to reach America to sell it.

Brace, James’ houseman, tries to tell him that James’ mother was no saint, but James ain’t hearing none of that, although he does keep having flashbacks to images of his mother trying to drown him. As the tension between all these characters ratchets up, James is starting to lose it, too. He becomes even darker and more violent, biting out a man’s tongue for betraying him, which is saying something, when you consider that, in an earlier episode, he ate part of a guy and cut off another man’s finger. He’s having more hallucinations, too. Is he succumbing to the madness that claimed his father, and that he thinks is claiming his sister?

Later, after recovering from a drunken stupor, he discovers the drowned body of Winter. Did he do this? Is it a setup? We’ll find out. We’ve got two more episodes left and I’ll have a full rundown on the finale when it airs.

 

On a more personal note:

I’m still very fatigued, although a lot less fatigued than I was at the start of the year. Its become my habit to go to bed as early as possible now, which means that a lot of these shows sit on my DVR until the weekend, and that’s what happened with The Expanse and Ash Vs. The Evil Dead. Also, there have been so many new shows, and season premieres, that its just hard to keep up with all of them. I’ve limited myself to reviewing the pilots and premieres only, except for those shows I’ve already been reviewing, like Supernatural, and The Walking Dead.

In March I’ll be reviewing the return of Samurai Jack, in its fifth season; Iron Fist, which I’m not especially enthused about, but hey!, I managed to sit thorough half of Jessica Jones, so how bad could it be; and the return of Into the Badlands, which I will review in the entirety of its second season.

So, TTFN!

Finn Meta Linkspam

Here are some discourses on my favorite character from Star Wars:

Star Wars, Finn, and Fandom Racism

 

We start with an admonishment to not be “That Person”.

thesovereignempress:

the-bi-writer:

this is a post for my fellow white star wars fans: we gotta do better. the treatment of Finn in the fandom at large has been dismal, both in obvious and insidious ways. so let’s talk about this.

quick note before we start: if you’re only here to argue, move on. if you’re already typing out a response beginning with, “not all white people,” don’t. however, if you’re interested in challenging your own biases, welcome aboard.

here are some harmful things white fans do, in regards to Finn:

1. we ignore him in fan works.

a quick check of ao3 stats shows that Hux (who has approx. 3 min of screen time) shows up in two thousand more works than Finn.

before you get defensive: no one’s telling you what you can and can’t write. however, as white fans we need to consider why we’re willing to go to the effort to imagine a rich backstory for a minor character we know almost nothing about, while ignoring the *actual* protagonist who already has a rich backstory of his own. (that protagonist is Finn, in case i was being unclear. Finn is a protagonist of Star Wars: Episode VII -The Force Awakens. Finn is a main character and co-lead. it’s Finn.)

2. when we do include Finn in fan works, we treat him poorly.

i’m going to stay in my lane on this one, and refer you to Writing with Color for more specifics on how *not* to treat black characters in harmful and/or stereotypical ways.

briefly: Finn is often hyper-sexualized (BBC, etc.) or pushed to the side by the narrative. additionally, very few fics, even ones with Finn in the main pairing, truly treat Finn as the protagonist of their fic.

i’m guilty of this myself, and i’m working on it. which is all i’m asking you to do: educate yourself, be willing to change, and then do it.

3. we underestimate his role in cannon

go read this post, and then tell me you haven’t been underestimating Finn from the moment he stepped on screen. i’d noticed almost everything the post points out, but chalked it up to plot holes, instead of considering that Finn (again, a protagonist) had been awake in the force since the beginning of the film.

that, right there friends, is racism.

tl;dr fellow white fans, we gotta do better. let’s take the energy we spend trying to convince people we aren’t racist…and actually be less racist. it’s our responsibility to examine our attitudes and change our actions. now is the time.

further reading:

here’s some excellent finn meta

here’s 5 tips for being an ally (video) by chescaleigh (Franchesca Ramsey) – her channel has a ton of other videos about race too.

here are a whole bunch of resources from Writing with Color, a tumblr “dedicated to writing and resources centered on racial & ethnic diversity.”

(feel free to add links + resources)

The thing is, if Reylo is your pairing and that’s the characters you choose to focus on – since that is how shipping works and as a reader I’m definitely going in for Reylo and other characters are secondary – what qualifies as “ignoring” or “pushing to the side”? That’s my issue with these talks about erasure and sidelining around Finn.

Lest it be misunderstood, I totally agree that we can be better at treating Finn in our fan works. I’ve seen him used in some uncomfortable ways. But there are some contradictions in this endeavor that tend to get glossed over.

I mean, no one is saying Finn should be the focus of fanfics about Reylo or other non-Finn ships. That doesn’t make sense. When we talk about Finn erasure, we’re talking about the bigger picture.

For example, if I go to the main TFA tag or the Star Wars tag, Finn is often nowhere to be seen. If I look for Finn (or even Finnrey or Stormpilot) fics, few that come up in the search are actually about Finn, making it difficult to find actual Finn content where he’s not a background character. When the title for Ep 8 dropped, There was a lot of speculation that The Last Jedi might be Ren and Rey as if Finn doesn’t exist. It’s not just in individual ship fics, if you look at many fan spaces, you would think Finn was a very minor character, not a main character. And that’s a problem.

We have to ask why Reylo and Kylux are the dominant ships while fics about Finn are the least popular. The question is not why aren’t Reylo and Kylux fics about Finn, it’s why are these ships exponentially more popular than ships including Finn and fics where Finn is actually a main character.

After a year’s worth of justifications that historically ONLY apply to white characters (fandom loves villains, the blank slate, etc) plus the fact that white heroes/protags are shipped like crazy, it’s clear that Finn’s blackness contributes heavily to his minimization.

Source: the-bi-writer fandom racism star wars finn
jawnbaeyega luminousfinn

skywalkerapologist:

luminousfinn:

The narrative arc The Force Awakens create between Finn and Kylo Ren is an interesting one. Visually it begins in the very first scene they appear on screen together at the assault of Tuanul village after the execution of the villagers that FN-2187 refused to participate in. When Kylo Ren is returning to his shuttle, he stops and stares at Finn for, at the time, no discernible reason.

In doing this the movie draws a visual line between the two men, connecting them in the audience’s mind and in-universe. One is dressed in black, the other in white, both are helmeted and faceless, but already we have witnessed the distinction between them and the movie spends the rest of its time emphasizing it: Kylo Ren will murder on a whim, while FN-2187 refuses to kill unarmed civilians.

After this “meeting” Kylo Ren maintains a distinct interest in FN-2187. So much that he not only knows that it was the same trooper which aided Poe in escaping, but that when he learns that Finn has got away with BB-8 he throws one of his two destructive rampages.

The other he has when Rey escapes captivity.

After this their stories part for a time, but only to be rejoined on Starkiller Base after Kylo Ren murders Han Solo.

After Chewie shoots Kylo, blows up the oscillator and everyone including Finn and Rey starts shooting, we see Kylo Ren kneeling on the bridge looking up. .

The camera cuts to an angle behind Kylo Ren’s head so we now also have Finn and Rey in the shot, both standing on a balcony in the background

Another cut, closing up on our two leads. This shows them both standing, looking down on Kylo Ren. Both look shocked and Finn is stepping forward on the balcony, towards the audience and more importantly, towards Kylo.

Once again the movie cuts and again it zooms in so that now Finn is in focus. His face merges from the shock and fear he has so far displayed, into grief, anger and determination. And throughout the shot he steps further and further forward while the camera zooms in on him, visually emphasizing him stepping into the conflict with Kylo Ren.

Rey is barely in the frame here and by the end of the shot she’s entirely gone, leaving her literally out of the picture.

Next cut is back to Kylo Ren, who is staring up at Finn. The way this sequence is cut together makes it startlingly clear that this is where he is looking and who he is looking at. Kylo’s face merges from surprise into unmitigated fury and hatred at the sight of FN-2187, the Stormtrooper who defected, who is everything he is not.

The whole sequence mirrors their first encounter with the two men staring at each other, though they’re now unmasked and we can see the mutual enmity clear on their faces. Finn is no longer running away, he’s stepping forward and the camera zooms in on Kylo’s face drawing him into conflict with Finn as well.

The movie sets up this conflict not just for the coming battle in the forest, but also for the next two Episodes as the battle between the two men is a draw. Finn is defeated by Kylo, but the Dark Sider does not obtain the lightsaber and is in turn defeated by Rey. Neither of them emerges a victor and the narrative conflict between them remains unresolved.

So whatever Episode VIII and IX brings, it is clear that Finn and Kylo will cross paths again and Kylo had better beware. To borrow John’s words: “Finn ain’t playing no more”, that much is clear from the scene in the oscillator.

Next cut is back to Kylo Ren, who is staring up at Finn. The way this sequence is cut together makes it startlingly clear that this is where he is looking and who he is looking at. 

This part is so important and yet flew over like 90% of the fandom’s heads in favor of focusing on Rey (gee I wonder why).

The shift in Finn’s expression from shocked grief to quiet rage reminds me of Luke’s reaction to seeing his aunt and uncle’s burnt corpses in ANH. Obviously Rey and Kylo will be squaring off again in VIII but TFA also made it clear that there’s some serious bad blood between Finn and Kylo that’s entirely separate from wanting to protect or recruit Rey. Which is why I roll my eyes when I see people claim that Finn is going to be shunted off to a B-plot opposite Hux (a character he never interacted with in TFA) and Phasma (who he literally threw in the trash).

Also, it’s worth noting that for the first time, Rey has to take Finn by the arm and pull him away.

image

Kylo was stumbling up towards them and I’m not convinced that Finn wouldn’t have tried to take him down right then and there.

finn meta to read
rebelfinn

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*Look, as far as I’m concerned Finn is Force Sensitive, and that’s that. He will be a  Jedi. I will wrestle you out of of your underwear, with your pants still on, if you disagree. Here, have some receipts:

Also, I just love this gorgeous essay on the parallels between Finn’s narrative and Arthurian legend.

jawnbaeyega adagalore

luminousfinn:

Maz giving Finn the lightsaber is noticeable for many reasons, not least of which because it happens twice and for all the Arthurian parallels surrounding the scenes.

 

The first time takes place just after the destruction of the Hosnia system which is what makes Finn return to Han (and implicitly to the fight against the Dark Side). At this point none of them knows that they’re about to be attacked themselves by the First Order, not even Maz.

Despite this she immediately upon Finn’s return  takes him, Han and Chewie into the cellar where she keeps the lightsaber. When she takes it out of the chest Han recognizes it and asks where she got it, she brushes him off and focuses on Finn.

Why Finn? Last she saw him Finn made it clear that he was leaving. Hosnia’s destruction marked a tentative return, but so far it is tentative. And wouldn’t Han a man who might not be a paragon, but someone she’s know for years, make more sense?

Her words as she passes it are ambiguous. “Take it. Find your friend.” And do what exactly? Give it to her? Use it to protect her? What? Recall, no one but Maz and Rey herself knows that Rey can use the Force at this point. In fact Finn is never told this in TFA.

In assorted other things the fact that Han’s attention shifts off Maz and onto Finn the moment she tells him to take it, but before she stops talking is interesting. His intent gaze on Finn as he makes the choice to take the weapon is mirrored in the second “giving” by Maz.

Maz too is looking rather expectantly as Finn reaches out and takes the lightsaber from her. The music that has so far been playing softly in the background swells dramatically the moment Finn’s hand touches the saber and mixes with the diegetic sound of an approaching TIE fighter as Finn raises the lightsaber as a young Arthur might Excalibur. The scene ends in a dramatic boom as the castle is struck just as we see Finn look at the saber with a serious face.

It is noticeable that Finn is so entranced by the lightsaber that he doesn’t seem to hear the incoming TIE. Not long before at Niima Outpost he jumped at the first sound of it, but here he’s oblivious to the noise.

 

Now before I go on to the second “giving” I’m going to make a small detour around Arthurian myth.

Much have been made of the Arthurian parallels in TFA. Kylo Ren as a Mordred like figure. Luke as either a Merlin or a fallen Arthur himself and of course Rey pulling the Skywalker lightsaber out of the metaphorical stone. But the Arthurian parallels have been ignored where Finn is concerned, especially when it comes to the giving of the lightsaber/Excalibur, because in Arthurian myths there are two kinds of givings of that sword. One is Arthur pulling it out of the stone which declares himself the true king of Britain, in the other it is given to him by The Lady of the Lake.

In both versions Arthur starts out as a youth of unknown parentage grown up fostered by strangers, just as Finn is. In the second versions Arthur runs into Merlin, often portrayed as an older, wiser man. Depending on the version Arthur either asks Merlin for help or about his future, in either case Merlin takes him to The Lady of the Lake.

The Lady depending on the version of the tale is either a powerful magical being or a High Priestess of Avalon. She proceeds to ask the young Arthur several question and put him through a test which he fails, but she sees that though he is not perfect he has a good heart and a true spirit. Realizing this she bequeath him Excalibur, the sword of the true king and the mark of a hero.

Maz is in a quite literal sense The Lady of the Lake. She a powerful alien, strong in the Force who has made her home on a lake.

Her initial interactions with Finn runs parallel with The Lady’s testing of Arthur, complete with Finn “failing the test” by choosing to leave. But in deciding to return to the fight Finn proves to The Lady of the Lake that he’s heart and spirit is true and so she gives him Excalibur (the Skywalker lightsaber) to wield.

 

That she means for him to wield it and not just as a caretaker becomes clear in the second “giving”.

When they exit the now ruined castle the dark forces are upon them and battle is joined. Maz once more tells Finn to go find his friends.

This time Finn has no intention of leaving proving him once more worthy of Excalibur and this time Maz’s words are unambiguous, she intends, and always intended, for him to be a wielder of the blade, not just a carrier.

As Finn again lifts the Skywalker lightsaber and this time ignites it, Maz look on with great expectancy clearly meant to mirror the audience. Will “Excalibur” accept Finn as its wielder? And will Finn accept the lightsaber as his?

At first we see doubt on Finn’s face, it’s an unfamiliar weapon and a Jedi’s weapon to boot. How can he wield this? But Maz believes he can and Finn is nothing if not up for whatever challenge life throws at him so he ignites it. The blade flashes to life in his hand, accepting him as a worthy wielder, and the moment it does Finn’s decision is also made. He may not be a Jedi (yet), but the sword is his.

 

tl;dr. There is a lot of Arthurian coding around Han (Merlin) bringing Finn (a young Arthur) to Maz (The Lady of the Lake), Maz testing him and in finding that he has a good and pure heart gives him the Skywalker lightsaber (Excalibur). The sword allowing itself to be ignited (drawn from the sheath) confirms Finn’s worthiness as its wielder.

Source: luminousfinnLISTENTHIS IS THE CONTENT FOR WHICH I AM HEREGOOD SHIT RIGHT HERE OKfinn factsfinn metafinn is force sensitiveboth rey and finn are gonna be jedi okchoke on THAT
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*I have a friend who insists that Finn was nothing more than comedy relief and refuses to move from the position that he is a “coon”, no matter how many valid points I bring up. I just don’t get it. Its obvious that she and I were not watching the same movie at all. But then, she and I aren’t in the same place on the idea of representation, either, which might be some type of generational thing. Also part of the problem is that a lot of Black people were expecting Shaft in Space. We already got all that with Mace Windu’s  purple lightsaber, so why copy that?
lj-writes

Finn’s subversive decency

Choosing to be kind is not choosing to be passive. It’s choosing to end the cycle of abuse… . It’s a courageous act in itself.

-Melissa Grey on Cinderella

It’s amazing to me how some parts of the Star Wars fandom have no sense of nuance when it comes to Finn’s character, seeing him as either a naive child who can hardly function in the real world or a ruthless killer who showed no regrets or conflicts whatsoever about killing his former comrades.

Both extremes are fairly dehumanizing and distorted portrayals of the actual character, because the core of Finn’s character is that he is innocent when he has no business being so. He’s a character whose innocence and purity are not oblivious naïvete but qualities he had to fight to keep and attain. His morality is not based on an ignorance of life’s harsh realities, but rather on an intimate knowledge of brutality and the will to break free of it.

Keep reading

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Oooh! More theory!

https://youtu.be/YByg2UoncBs

On Tumblr: Hannibal Meta

*Yes, I’m still fascinated by this show, its characters, and its meanings. I hope some of you guys are just as interested, so here’s some Hannibal meta, that showed up on my dashboard, from when the show was at its peak. This might  spur some of you to re- watch certain episodes with a fresh perspective.
Remember Bedelia’s statement, later in the first season, about Hannibal’s careful facade and that she could catch glimpses of the real man through his human suit. This is important because Hannibal has been wearing this “person suit” from the moment Will first met him.
From: hannibalsbattlebot

On the surface, Will telling Hannibal “I don’t find you that interesting” seems unbelievably rude. Ah, we think, Hannibal must find Will special if he puts up with that. But, this early on Hannibal has only shown Will his mask, his human suit. To most people, the facade is interesting enough. That’s the point. All the trappings were put there by Hannibal to distract everyone from his real self. When Will is not impressed by this smoke screen, he has passed an important test.

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*This is an essay about Hannibal’s ability to feel. I would say that yes, he does have emotions, but I would argue they are somewhat truncated, not as fully developed as they should be in a grown man, as he rarely, if ever expends emotion on anyone other than Will or himself.

It’s not that Hannibal’s emotions are fake, (although I believe in some cases they are), but when we do see him showing emotions towards others, I think that he’s simply going through the motions,  pretending to care about Jack, or Alana, for example, and when he does have genuine emotions for others, like Abigail and Will, it’s only in relation to how close/useful that person is to himself.He certainly has emotions when it comes to something directly affecting him, but something that directly affects others, not so much.

In other words, Hannibal lacks empathy.

From: slayerangels

”Will loves Hannibal because he doesn’t have emotions and so Will can be himself around him because he can’t pick up feelings from Hannibal with his empathy disorder.”

I’ve seen this idea a few times and it’s baffling. Here’s a list of reasons why that’s wrong:

1. Hannibal has emotions. Many emotions. His emotions are not fake. He shows emotions when people aren’t even observing him or in the same room. He was upset at what happened to Margot after Will left the room. He was upset that Bella died and was crying over it by himself in Italy. He moped around about Will in Italy the entire time. He missed Will so much in Sorbet he was fidgeting around and clearly upset about it. He was mad that Gideon was calling himself the Ripper. He gets super annoyed at rude people. These are all emotions.

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2. Will can “read” the Ripper enough to know which crimes scenes are his and which aren’t and also give a history about his childhood to Jack. Will can also “read” the copycat. Hannibal is the Ripper and the copycat. So, Will can read Hannibal. Which is why Hannibal got super defensive about Will in Season 1 and framed him and put him in prison. Because he knew Will would find him out eventually.

3. Will can “seduce” and “deceive” Hannibal in S2 because he can empathize with him or “understand” him. Hannibal says this directly and Will agrees.

4. Hannibal and Will share a memory palace. Will goes to places he has been to “read” him, just like he does at crime scenes. Will knows Hannibal “intimately” as he says himself. If he likes being around him because he doesn’t “pick up” things from his empathy, then that makes no sense.

5. Will doesn’t automatically know who a killer is, even if he’s investigating their crimes. Tobias is a prime example. Hannibal realized Tobias was a killer immediately, Will didn’t. Another example would be Abigail. Hannibal knew she was a killer before Will did. If anything Hannibal has more insight into people than Will does. That doesn’t mean he has less empathy than Will, it means he has the same amount or more. “I can’t turn it off anymore than you can” Hannibal says to Will in Aperitif. When Hannibal was doing Will’s job in S2 for Jack he got the job done, he figured out who the killer was and why he was killing and exactly where he was, he just didn’t tell all that info to Jack because he wanted to go kill him first. Hannibal can in fact do Will’s job and he helps Will do his job better, “Will has never been more effective than he is with you inside his head”. Hannibal knows all about the Shrike enough to help Will figure out who the Shrike really is, right from the beginning of the show. “He had to show me a negative so that I could see the positive, that crime scene was practically gift wrapped.” My point being that just because Will doesn’t know Hannibal is the Ripper for a while (about 3 months) doesn’t mean that he can’t “read” Hannibal’s emotions. His empathy disorder doesn’t make him psychic and it isn’t supernatural.

I get it’s hard to understand why Will didn’t realize Hannibal was in love with him, but this is no explanation. It negates the entire show. Other explanations should be entertained. Will knows that Hannibal is very sad over him, “He sent us his broken heart” and he knows that the key to understand him is love, “No one can be fully aware of another human being unless we love them” and he knows he can take advantage of Hannibal’s feelings for him, “You’d only do that if I’d rejected you.” So, taking all that into account, the explanation that he just didn’t want to fully believe it, he was lying to himself, or wanted it confirmed by Bedelia (because he was afraid Hannibal loved her or because he believed she would know more than anyone else), or some combination of those is the most likely.

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*I loved this particular meta. I have yet to start reviewing season 3, so  haven’t discussed Will’s mind pendulum  yet.

From: silkysimpona

Will’s Mind Pendulum

Has anyone else noticed the difference between Will analyzing Hannibal’s crime scene and Will analyzing someone else’s crime scene?

When he investigates the Leeds murder in The Great Red Dragon, his mind pendulum makes an appearance for the first time in season 3.

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The pendulum is a way for Will to get into the murder empathy mindset, but it also represents a physical barrier between him and the subject he wants to analyze. In essence, it establishes a defensive barrier between his sense of self and his sense of the killer’s self, keeping them completely separate from each other. The stronger the pendulum, the stronger his sense of self.

Compare this to his analysis of the Hannibal’s crime scene in Primavera. Here, Will doesn’t use a pendulum. There is just a brief blur in and blur out to signify his entrance into Hannibal’s state of mind.

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At this point, his mind is so intertwined with Hannibal’s that he doesn’t need the physical act of the pendulum to get him into the correct mindset. His sense of self is already almost entirely wrapped up and muddled up with Hannibal’s. Not only does he not need to use his pendulum in this moment, he probably can’t use his pendulum to put up a mental barrier between them. They’re already conjoined after all.

In Dolce, Will says to Hannibal, “You and I have begun to blur.” I think it’s pretty neat that they were able to illustrate that with the simple absence of a pendulum effect.

 

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*This essay is about something I touched on in an earlier essay, regarding how Alana changed after her relationship with Hannibal, how she became, in the third season, harder and colder, in reaction to having known him. It also points out some interesting details about Margot.
thatlightsaberlesbian

You know what I really fucking love about Marlana? (everything)

No but really, aside from everything, one specific thing that I love about them is that they had equally interesting but “opposite” wardrobe changes as their characters developed.

Alana started out with the wrap dresses, which were usually not layered with anything, and then by season 3 she was wearing three piece suits. She armored up. Did she abandon femininity? Hell no. But she still, finally, after implicitly trusting Jack, Hannibal, and Will and being betrayed in that trust by literally all of them, learned to protect herself. She withdrew her trust and the physical armor of the suits reflected that change nicely. (One could also argue that she consciously or unconsciously was imitating Hannibal.)

Margot, on the other hand, started out with these incredibly stiff and layered outfits. Her hair buns were sleek and severe, and her lipstick reflected that. Need I say anything about the shoulder pads–designed to make her appear larger, more intimidating? Yes, Margot was protecting herself with these layers of clothing, I don’t think anyone failed to pick up on that. And then she meets Alana. And she makes this switch to softer clothing choices, and hairstyles, and makeup. But only with her.

I find this to be really awesome because both of these wardrobe choices were incredibly well-thought-through. Both of them accurately reflected the development each of them was going through. And that’s really cool because a lot of the time in media you see more masculine girls lauded for becoming more feminine in coming-of-age stories, or by contrast, feminine girls who become more masculine to redeem themselves (e.g. Regina George in Mean Girls). And what I love about Marlana is that there’s none of that, because both of their transformations were intensely personal and reflected what they personally were going through.

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*This one is about the loneliness of both Will and Hannibal.

bu0nanotte
Do you ache for him?For me, these two scenes effectively sum up just how alone Hannibal and Will are without each other. We see Will desperately attempting to focus all his attention on fixing a boat motor, a problem we heard Hannibal refer to as ‘easy’ to solve in season one. The simplicity of this creates a stark contrast in relation to Will’s current state of mind regarding his feelings for Hannibal, confirmed through the series of flashbacks we see. Will is not entirely haunted by the fact that Hannibal gutted him; he is haunted by the fact that Hannibal left him. We see flashbacks of Hannibal holding Will, followed by Will falling to the ground and Hannibal bending over him. These are not the typical flashbacks generally associated with people suffering from post-traumatic stress; these flashbacks are rooted in Will’s heartbreak over the fact that Hannibal left him.

In relation to Hannibal, we see him sat in a chair, pensive as he stares ahead. This in itself is unusual as we usually see Hannibal busying himself with something or other. Again this serves to elucidate just how barren his existence is without Will. This also confirms how much Will has changed him, given that the Hannibal we met in season one was entirely self-reliant and self-serving. I believe there was a void in Hannibal’s life, an ache he couldn’t quite identify or pinpoint. Will filled that void. Independence and the isolation associated with it was something Hannibal was used to and previously drew comfort from. Now there is no comfort in his isolation. He and Will quickly realise and accept just how empty, how devoid of purpose their lives are without each other, testament of the vicious mutual co-dependency they each fostered.

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Ooh, I really enjoyed this one, which outlines the various ways that people respond to threatening behavior, and specifically to how Hannibal responds to Will.

imageimage
I just noticed a dynamic between these guys that I’d never quite put together before: in precise contrast to what Will thinks he wants, he will always fail to follow through on a lethal confrontation with Hannibal if (and only if) Hannibal makes a show of rolling over for him.
Bear with me for a sec because this is kind of fascinating: a while ago, I read a book called On Killing: The Psychological Cost of Learning to Kill in War and Society. The author Dave Grossman proposed a theory which jives with a lot of stuff I learned in anthropology classes, but he has a particularly pithy way of describing it. Between animals of the same species, he says, the choices of behavior in a confrontation aren’t as simple as the “fight or flight” choice we usually talk about.

Grossman calls his model “fight, flight, posture, or submit.” This model takes into account a common trait among most animals (including humans): members of the same species almost never jump immediately to the ‘fight’ option in a confrontation. Doing so would result in needless deaths, particularly among younger individuals who haven’t yet learned to defend themselves, and then to eventual depopulation and extinction.

Instead, animals tend to begin confrontations by posturing – by making a show of their superiority in an attempt to make the other party back down. If, during the posturing phase, it becomes clear that the individuals are fairly evenly matched, they are likely to start a physical fight in order to establish dominance, while still avoiding lethal attacks if possible.

However, if it becomes clear during the posturing phase that one of the individuals is definitely strong enough to defeat the other one, the weaker opponent will do one of two things: flee or submit. I’ll just quote the book here:

“Submission is a surprisingly common response, usually taking the form of fawning and exposing some vulnerable portion of the anatomy to the victor, in the instinctive knowledge that the opponent will not kill or further harm one of its own kind once it has surrendered.”

So, now that we’ve got all that context out of the way, let’s talk about Will and Hannibal!

Keep reading
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*Here’s a more scholarly approach to why the show, Hannibal, is the way it is, and what that means to the larger culture.

White Collar Cannibal: the Gentrified Grotesque in NBC’s Hannibal

Racism Link Roundup

Here’s a selection of readings from last week. The articels themeselves may not be new but they are worth reading if you have an interest in the subject.

*Racism and Toxic Masculinity in Pop Cullture:

blackgirlfly asked: Given what we know from Finn in the various canon novelizations, do you think his depiction in the film serviced him well? Finn is clearly an intelligent, strong, brave, skilled individual, however that doesn’t seem to be what many took away with. They’ve simply written him off as a sanitation worker or the “new Jar Jar”. Is this purely fandom racism or poor character development and do you think there’s room for improvement?

jawnbaeyega:

I think by and large the film serviced him well. We know that he’s intelligent, strong, brave, and skilled because we were shown that in the film. I think there are two major things going into people’s inability to see that Finn is an incredible hero: racism and hyper/toxic masculinity.

As to the racism, it’s been scientifically proven over and over again that white people have significant difficulty empathizing with Black people in real life and on screen. Also given rampant media stereotyping, it’s difficult for people to see Black people outside of basic stereotypical boxes. So even when confronted with a multidimensional and incredible character like Finn, all they see is “comic relief” or “sidekick.”

This is why it’s really important that writers understand that you can’t just write a Black character in the same way as you would a white character. More work has to be done to play up their goodness, heroism, and complexity otherwise people will rely on stereotypes or throw away lines (i.e. how Finn once worked in sanitation when he was a trooper in training and stationed on Starkiller base) to erase all of that. For example, this is why the slow burn relationship build up with Black female characters isn’t successful…folks will just see her as the “strong friend/sidekick who don’t need no man” and won’t see the build up and then will act surprised when it happens. The media needs to spend time just showing Black women being loved and valued and romantic interests and after that settles in the mass consciousness, then we can do the slow burn (or at least both at the same time…bc the will they or won’t they thing alone just isn’t working).

As to the hyper/toxic masculinity, folks aren’t used to male heroes like Finn. Finn is vulnerable, acknowledges his feelings and fears, and is compassionate and empathetic. A lot of men (of all races) I’ve talked to who didn’t like Finn and claimed he was useless kept bringing up “he never won a fight” and “he was unconscious at the end” as “reasons” why he was “useless and weak.” They also always make mention of how Rey, “the girl,” defeated Kylo when Finn “couldn’t” (not taking into account Kylo’s injury, Rey tapping into the Force, and the fact that Finn wielding the saber and injuring Kylo at all w/o consciously using the force is huge). All of that is rooted in the idea that male heroes need to be invulnerable and kill and win all the time and “be better than the girl” by whatever metric they set (note: Finn & Rey are obviously equals and anybody insinuating otherwise has a problem). Finn’s subversion of hyper/toxic masculinity is so important. But that kinda adherence to toxic masculinity keeps people from seeing that Finn is literally the catalyst for the entire film, the reason the plot keeps moving forward, the emotional center of TFA, and obviously on his own hero’s journey.

I mean, it’s a trilogy ffs. Neither Finn nor Rey have reached their full potential. John already told us “Finn ain’t playing no more.” But somehow people think that because Rey’s force sensitivity was made more obvious in the first film that somehow Finn is less important or not a lead or whatever nonsense and it’s all truly ridiculous and rooted in problematic shit that people need to work through.

tl;dr: racism and toxic masculinity are a hellavu drug and white writers don’t understand the extra work they have to do with Black characters to mitigate the effects of those isms on how Black characters are interpreted.

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A Hero, Just Not The Hero: Masculinity in Star Wars: The Force Awakens

http://www.kissmywonderwoman.com/2016/02/masculinity-monday-star-wars-finn-is.html

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Racism in General:

http://www.timwise.org/2016/08/patriotism-is-for-black-people-colin-kaepernick-donald-trump-and-the-selectivity-of-white-rage/

http://www.pennlive.com/opinion/2017/01/blacks_should_leave_forgivenes.html

View story at Medium.com

https://bullshit.ist/white-genocide-really-6007e1e4192e#.491vr6h10

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Chris Kluwe is always going to be one of my favorite people. If you haven’t read his book yet, Beautifully Unique Sparkleponies, then please find a copy, and settle in for the evening.

Fuck You, Donald Trump

Fuck you, Donald Trump.

Fuck you for being a hypersensitive, grossly plump caricature of a human being; a squirming mass of cockroaches lurking under a skinsuit veneer.

Fuck your wanton plundering of our social fabric, your willingness to tear down the structure that allows you to exist, your glorification of the worst parts of humanity, all in the name of your own insatiable greed and depravity.

Fuck your racebaiting, fearmongering, Nazi-enabling rhetoric that allows the darkest and most destructive corners of our collective zeitgeist free reign to terrorize the rest.

Fuck your ignorant paucity of intellect, your narcissistic belief in your own ego, your inability to recognize your own descent into fascism.

Fuck your promotions of white supremacists to positions of power, of science denying crackpots to oversee our future, of bootlicking toadies to oversee your transition.

Fuck your misogynistic views on women’s rights, fuck your archaic beliefs on the freedom of press and religion, and fuck your idiotic venality when it comes to the destruction of a country that, while not always achieving freedom for all of its citizens, has done the best to get there in the entirety of recorded human history.

Fuck you, Melania Trump.

Fuck you for being willing to support this disgusting slime mold because it means you can live a life of privilege and luxury, never mind the hardships that will befall women across this nation due to your husband’s philistinic views.

Fuck you for posing for puff pieces in entertainment magazines while the cabal of shitgoblins your partner is assembling gets ready to reverse everything that has allowed you to possess even the most moderate amount of power.

Fuck you for taking the easy choice, the choice to suck the dick of a loathsome troll in order to wear Hugo Boss dresses, instead of taking a stand in order to protect the fifty percent of our population who shares your gender.

Fuck you for smiling and waving at the cameras when your husband is on record as saying, “Grab them (women) by the pussy. You can do anything.”

Fuck your betrayal of everything Susan B. Anthony and other suffragettes fought for, fuck your tacit acceptance that a woman should be an accessory to a man, fuck your self-centered interest in insuring your own well-being over the well-being of the country that allows you such a lifestyle.

Fuck you, Ivanka, Eric, and Donald Trump Jr.

Fuck you for being willing lackeys of this pusillanimous ape, for carrying his water on television and in media interviews.

Fuck you for clinging to his hairy teat, for not finding the courage to strike out on your own, for not recognizing that even though you can’t choose your parents, you can certainly choose your own path in life.

Fuck you for normalizing this piece of shit wannabe-Hitler, for treating his wretched series of business enterprises as anything other than the fraudulent snake-oil jobs that they are, for bowing beneath the lash instead of standing tall and making your own way, despite the loss it might incur.

Fuck you for the hate and pain you will inflict on hundreds of thousands of American citizens because you couldn’t muster the courage to say, “No, this isn’t right, and even though I’m related to you by blood, I refuse to proceed with this abhorrent state of affairs.”

Fuck your greasy, slimy, frat-house words and beliefs, your ideals that would tear us apart, your craven unworthiness to occupy a public space that you achieved through no merit of your own, one which you have no idea what to do with other than to cause hurt.

Fuck you, Jared Kushner.

Fuck your anti-Semitism.

Fuck your quisling compliance, your willingness to see those like you tortured and degraded in order to further your own lot in life.

Fuck your manipulation of our media through your financial control of the Observer, fuck your sheltered life of wanton privilege, fuck your inability to understand the arc of history.

Fuck everything you do to uphold a wretched lout who would suffer no qualms in ordering you in front of the firing squad if it meant he might live another day.

Fuck you, Republicans who refuse to disown this bloated leech.

Fuck your cowardice, your disavowal of the solemn duties of your office — keeping this country safe from tyrants and demagogues.

Fuck you for meekly bending the knee in compliance, instead of speaking truth to power.

Fuck you for choosing political expediency over courage, fuck you for sacrificing the poor and the sick, fuck you for dragging our government into a hole from which it may never recover.

Fuck you, members of the media.

Fuck your constant pursuit of ratings, of quarterly profits, of giving this tinpot cumdumpster a platform with which he can influence a large part of our country

Fuck you for buying into the idea that racism should be afforded an equal platform with equality, for calling a Nazi anything other than a Nazi.

Fuck your smarmy thinkpieces attempting to normalize a new hegemony, fuck your cowardice in the face of totalitarianism, fuck your CEOs and VPs and executive producers who are willing to feed the innocent to the depraved in order to forestall their own demise.

Fuck you for not doing your job.

Fuck you, Trump supporters.

Fuck you for your willing ignorance, your inability to understand that a fascist is telling you exactly what he wants to do to you.

Fuck you for tearing apart the rule of law, and bringing back the rule of force.

Fuck you for not caring, for believing the easy lies you read instead of using your brain to find the truth.

Fuck you for putting your petty hatreds and squabbles ahead of everything that once made this country great, and fuck you for unwittingly causing it to fall.

Fuck you everyone who refuses to take a stand against this man.

Fuck your inability to understand history.

Fuck your selfish interests that ignore the fact that if one of us isn’t free, none of us is free.

Fuck your willingness to normalize this dictator, your filthy desire for more lucre, your inability to fight for your fellow citizens and everything this country once stood for. The Founders would be ashamed of you.

Fuck your blind optimism that things will somehow magically turn out okay, fuck your American exceptionalism draped in the corpses of communities of color, fuck your overwhelming ignorance that could be solved if you simply wished to learn and ask ‘why.’

Above all, fuck your cowardice, your self-loathing hypocrisy, your myopic blinders keeping you from identifying the single greatest threat our republic has faced since we took up arms against the British, because if someone other than you suffers, somehow that makes it just fine.

Fuck you, Donald Trump, for turning my country into something that it never should have become, for turning it into something no country should ever become.

Fuck you, Donald Trump, for driving us into conflict, one that will most likely end in violence.

Fuck you, Donald Trump.

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Feminism:

https://psmag.com/female-superheroes-are-not-necessarily-feminist-heroes-6397caf2293b#.hpojr9wgs

https://howwegettonext.com/its-time-for-a-new-kind-of-power-fantasy-a5ff23b2237f#.8b75ns1sg

https://ww2.kqed.org/pop/2016/02/04/nipplegate-revisited-why-america-owes-janet-jackson-a-huge-apology

*This Indigenous woman chronicles her experiences at the one of the Women’s Marches that occurred this weekend. There are a number of criticisms I had about the Women’s March but overall I think its a positive thing. I had no plans to participate in it, but  I support those who wanted to and did so, as long as this isn’t the end of their activism..

  1. This is very important.

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*The Normalization of White Criminality:

https://getpocket.com/explore/item/why-do-we-humanize-white-guys-who-kill-people-1121727335

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/the-problem-with-romanticizing-white-male-criminals-on-tv_us_5632598ae4b06317991166a6

*This article has been making the rounds of Tumblr again:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Tumblr Discussions # 192

 

*Nick Spencer is the current writer for the Captain America series, which I have not read. Earlier this year, he got into some fandom trouble for revealing Captain America to secretly be a Nazi. Then he put his foot in it again with Sam Wilson. Now I am a huge Sam Wilson fan, although I have not read the Sam Wilson version of Captain America. Apparently, he wrote a scene where a Black man apologizes to a White man for being socially active. And Spencer keeps up this trend of being an old White guy yelling at clouds, by mocking and deriding Social justice activists by  creating nasty caricatures of them:

thefingerfuckingfemalefury:

steviemcfly:

aka14kgold:

wetwareproblem:

lierdumoa:

hellotailor:

‘Captain America’ comic under fire for mocking social justice activism

Captain America writer Nick Spencer is no stranger to controversy, making headlines last year with the infamous “Steve Rogers is secretly a Nazi” plot twist. Now, he’s facing backlash for a satirical depiction of social justice activists.

During a standoff between the Falcon and a racist pundit, the comic introduces a stereotypical parody of young activists: a Z-list supervillain team of college students demanding a “safe space” on campus.

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Spencer described the team as a lighthearted satire, but if so, that satire isn’t very effective. In a rather preachy tone, the comic presents a judgmental divide between two versions of anti-racist activism: wholesome heroes like Sam Wilson, and laughable weirdos who use words like “patriarchy” and try to blow people up.

It echoes the common misconception that social justice terminology belongs to a realm of Tumblr teens who get “outraged” as a kind of hobby, while reasonable adults provide practical solutions in the real world.

[READ MORE]

When a white guy, draws a black man apologizing to white man for possibly ever using the language of activism. That’s racist masturbation. pic.twitter.com/OTHHVWyrWw

Good article.

TL&DR: Comic artist draws comic equating criticism with terrorism. When met with further criticism, complains that “kids these days are so sensitive.”

Rule one of satire: Punch up.

Rule two: HOLY FUCKING SHIT do not write a PoC apologizing to a white dude for daring to have maybe possibly been an activist. Like. Holy FUCK.

(Rule three: don’t make a character created by a Jew a Nazi)

Seriously, this dude needs to be boycotted or something.

Dude needs to be fired. Out of a cannon. Into the sun.

It’s a pathetic example of some clueless imbecile playing “Respectability Politics” and trying to claim that there’s a “Wrong” way to be progressive or liberal

Or that there’s any such thing as going “too far” when it comes to opposing bigotry and fascism or that we should all just “Play Nice” and “Don’t fight hate with hate” and other such spineless garbage that pathetic cowardly moderates love to spout as they shout their cowardice and weakness to the world

This is the equivalent of Seth McFarlane or South Parks garbage excuse for “Comedy” that celebrates the status quo and acts like progressives and people who want positive social change are either laughable and stupid or else dangerous freaks who are “Just as bad” as actual fascists and bigots through some bizzaro troll logic that only some pathetic old white straight man could apply to a situation

And here we see Nick Spencer combine the worst of both approaches and give us THIS garbage that portrays activists and people who care about human rigths and social justice and oppose bigotry and fascism as being both ridiculous and to be mocked and also as dangerous weirdoes who toss grenades at superheroes

This is GARBAGE

It’s the right wing gutter trash that do shit like this. It’s right wing pieces of shit who commit hate crimes, bomb planned parenthood clinics and carry out atrocities like the shooting at the Pulse nightclub last year…but in the upside down world of Nick Spencer, spineless moderate douchebag, anyone who passionately and vocally opposes the bigotry and fascism of scumbags like that are apparently “Just as bad” and deserve to be mocked

And of course he uses a black character as a mouth piece for his anti-SJW bullshit to try and make it seem less blatantly like a boring old white straight man whining about “Kids today” and how awful it is that we don’t want to play nice with bigots

Playing nice gets you JACK SHIT, Spencer

The civil rights movement, stonewall, women getting the vote…none of these things happened because of us playing nice with the bigots and the fascists of this world.

Spencers writing is pathetic, unfunny and clearly an example of someone playing “Respectability politics” bullshit…you just know he’s the kind of pitiful twat who tries to win arguements with tired “Martin Luther King wouldn’t approve of this you guys” arguements whenever it comes to how to respond to social injustices

And holy shit having Sam Wilson apologise to some old white man if he ever sounded passionate and angry about civil rights (Because lol CARING about things is stupid right) is quite possibly the most disgusting and insulting cherry to put atop this shit sundae

Source: hellotailor
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*One of the more popular critiques of people who argue for representation, is the idea that they should make their own, which ignores that we do in fact make our own, but when the means of distribution is controlled by Straight White men, its extremely difficult to do this. From Bigskydreaming again, this is  a gorgeous essay on how difficult it is to make your own representation, hampered as he is  by the gatekeepers of various  popular media.
bigskydreaming

This shit makes me so mad, not just as a bisexual man, but as a bisexual creator.

Because it wasn’t even a week ago that I talked about a fantasy pilot I’m shopping around town about supernatural teens where the main character was a gay teen boy.

And I got a very well intentioned message about it and how I was likely going to have to make the lead straight if I ever wanted it to have a chance to get picked up by a major network like the CW. And they follow me and know I’m referencing them lol and please know I’m not trying to call you out or anything, because their message was never the problem.

The problem was they’re not wrong. Like, I’m well aware of how this town works, and the limitations it puts on creative content including marginalized characters, let alone REVOLVING around such characters. I’m well aware of how every creative industry is about that, and how audiences and readers are about that.

Even in industries that are supposedly actively seeking out diverse works by marginalized creators, there are still limitations, still quotas. Yeah, the YA publishing industry wants books about teens of color and various sexual orientations, but not TOO many. Trust me, I know. For every book that gets accepted for having a gay lead character, there’s another book that gets rejected because that publishing imprint already has a ‘big’ book coming out with a gay lead character and there’s such a thing as too many of those as far as publishing is concerned. And so every time I see a book getting published by a major imprint about gay characters that isn’t written by a gay author? It fucking hurts, because I know damn well just HOW MANY talented gay writers there are out there desperate to get their stories boosted to wider audiences, marketed by a major publisher….they just got there too late, their spot had already been given away.

I’ve shopped scripts in Hollywood. I’ve had pitch meetings, I’ve sat with people who have the power to buy my scripts and boost them to the next level. And you wanna know what note I get over and over? Too many LGBT+ characters. There’s just too many in my stuff.

There’s something so deeply fucked up and insidious about industries and atmospheres that don’t even bat an eye or show the slightest bit of awareness while telling marginalized creators to limit how much of themselves they pour into their work.

These people, to my face, have made it perfectly clear – they WANT my stories, they WANT my imagination, they WANT my writing….they just don’t want it to look or sound too much like ME, the person behind the story, the person who dreamed it up…..because apparently that just makes it too damn hard to market it to anyone who isn’t just like me.

Since I was a kid, I’ve heard it over and over – you want better representation, make it yourself. And its like yo, fuckwads, we’re fucking TRYING over here. But even when we do, you keep putting limits on it, or telling us you only had the budget to give one or two stories about marginalized characters a chance and oh wait, you already spent that money on straight white men telling these stories for us.

Except those stories? Not written by us? That’s how you end up with the homophobic version of MISERY, with tons of visibility and all the things actual LGBT+ creators would kill to have for their stories about LGBT+ characters….and its not just that the story exists. Its not just the knowledge that something that fucking eroticizes homophobic torture porn has thousands of fans. It’s the awareness that the visibility of THAT piece of work actually detracts from the visibility of actual LGBT+ creators’ work, because hate to say it, but marginalized works ARE still very much a zero sum game.

And to be perfectly clear, its not that you have to be of a specific identity to write a realistic representation of that identity. No, that’s an excuse that people who don’t want to put in the work to do just that love to fall back on, but like. Research. Educate yourself. Put in the time. Put in the effort. You can absolutely represent anyone realistically.

The problem with marginalized works being created primarily by people of non-marginalized identities isn’t in their ABILITY to represent non straight white male identities realistically. The problem is with PRIORITIES.

Because guess what? I’m greedy. I don’t just want to see more bisexual characters on TV. I don’t just want to see a realistic depiction of someone like me, if that means they’re just as likely to get hurt or abused or killed off like the straight characters there just so happen to be twenty replacements for, already to go, just waiting in the wings.

If that was all that mattered, like, I’d sink my money into making a Where’s Waldo book with a gay or bi character on every page and just print those up and hand them out on street corners.

But realistic representation is great and all, but its still not the only thing. There’s nothing realistic about decades and decades of stories where it just so happens that coincidentally, the straight white male character always gets what he wants out of the story even as the black character dies first, the gay character sleeps around but never finds true love, and the disabled character is inspirational, but not much else.

No, representation isn’t just about being able to point at the screen and go, there I am, that’s me, he’s just like me. It’s about getting to see characters like you get everything the other characters get.

It’s about seeing the gay and bi characters get to be the heroes, to save the universe. To be put in life-threatening situations and ESCAPE in spite of the odds, to live to fight another day. To have love triangles and options instead of being paired up with the only other gay character onscreen by default. THAT is what true representation is. Anything less than what straight white audiences take for granted is still just half-assing it.

And as for marginalized works still being a zero sum game, well, you can tell me they’re not, that there’s plenty of room for everyone. The internet is a big place. Yup, yup. It is. Its so big, in fact, that shockingly enough, things like funding and budgets and marketing departments and publisher backing and corporate sponsorship and name recognition all make a difference between you producing content that people can find and enjoy and boost and you just shouting into the void.

Don’t tell me that marginalized works aren’t a zero sum game when I have literally sat in meetings with people who are perfectly conciliatory when explaining that sorry, this is just the way the world/industry/game works.

I mean, don’t get me wrong. This is just me ranting, this isn’t me saying anything that any and all marginalized creators don’t already know for themselves and its certainly not going to do anything to change the minds or priorities of the people who have the most power to do something about this in the shortest span of time.

I know this is essentially me shouting sour grapes into the void. And yeah, I’m perfectly aware that the grapes here are very sour, that I am absolutely 100% bitter about seeing works with shit or even actively harmful marginalized representation get prioritized over the works of actual marginalized creators when it comes to resources, visibility, acclaim.

But just cuz I’m bitter while I’m saying it, doesn’t make what I’m saying untrue.

 

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*There is a huge argument on Twitter involving those who revere Kylo Ren from the Star Wars movies and people calling them out on this. It also involves shipping, and the idea that Kylo Ren fans engage in racism against Finn, to prop up their White male villain:

fandomshatepeopleofcolor

Re: the woobification of Kylo Ren

(Sorry if this submitted twice. For some reason it showed up on my own blog and I was confused.)

I think a huge problem is the lack of diversity in the casting of characters I call “the delicious villain.” When I was little, I used to watch soap operas with my mom, and there were always those “bad boy” characters who were absolutely the villains of the shows, but who were also absolutely known for their sex appeal.

We see these characters in mainstream cinema in the likes of Loki, the Joker, Sweeney Todd, The Phantom of the Opera, Jack Ripner (Red Eye), Spike (Buffy), etc. Is there some internalized misogyny at play that attracts us to these characters? Probably. But we have to acknowledge the popularity of these characters nevertheless, and we can’t ignore the fact the that they are all white.

We have to question why POC aren’t cast as “the delicious villain.”

We have to question whether we would woobify Kylo Ren if he were played by a POC.

Characters like Kylo Ren can actually be fascinating because they are villains that are written with a touch of humanity (Kylo Ren still feels a pull to the light) unlike the Darth Vader-type villains who are there simply to evoke fear. There is no reason not to cast POC in these roles except for the inherent racism that blinds white audiences to the humanity of anyone who isn’t white.

Submitted by a-world-without-shrimp

And I feel this is in line with this essay:

The Glorification of White Crime

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I’m posting this for the excellent clapback against critics of what used to be called “Political Correctness”, but now, in an effort to try insulting Black people in  a different way, is now called “Identity Politics”.

thisiseverydayracism:

The other day on Twitter, a man posted a picture of my coloring book he’d given his daughter for Christmas. He was excited to give her a coloring book full of badass intersectional feminists. He wanted to thank me for creating it.

“I don’t know,” chimed in a random stranger (because Twitter), “Sounds like identity politics to me.”

Hell yeah it does.

“Identity Politics” is now thrown about as an insult at many progressive activists. Critics say that Identity Politics make everything about gender, everything about sexuality, and everything about race. And to this I say: yes, yes, and hell yes.

Call it what you want. I don’t care. Complain that we’re making shit about race — you know what? We are. Complain that we’re keeping the left from focusing only on class — yup, and proudly so. Complain all you want because I am not and will never be ashamed of focusing on the politics of identity. I will not feel a moment’s guilt for slowing this whole train down to make sure that everyone can get on and we’re on the right track. I will proudly own up to making shit hard for you.

Thank god for Identity Politics.

You know why? Because you know what we had before Identity Politics? I’ll tell you.

We had White Dudes.

We had white dudes as the pinnacles of power. We had white dudes on all our TV screens, we had white dudes reporting all our news, we had white dudes writing all our books. Sometimes they were accompanied by attractive white ladies (as all the white dudes were straight). But mostly, we had white dudes.

And if you were not a white dude? You didn’t exist. Laws were not written for you, infrastructure was not built for you, history was not written about you. You did not exist in film, television, or novels. You were not a part of the American dream.

And do you know what has been changing all of that? Do you know what has been saving this country from the monotony and tyranny of white, cis, heterosexual dudes? Identity Politics.

Identity Politics are everything that its critics fear. Identity Politics are decentralizing whiteness, straightness, cis-ness, and maleness. Identity Politics brought you equal marriage, the voting rights act, and abortion access. Identity Politics has got people believing that black is beautiful, that disability is nothing to be ashamed of, that fat people deserve respect, that a woman can say no. Identity politics are forcing the world to consider what it has spent hundreds of years ignoring — everyone else.

Without Identity Politics, we wouldn’t all get along better, we’d just cease to exist. And know, that is primarily what those who decry Identity Politics want. They want the world of the past, where we existed in the shadows, where they never had to consider race or gender, because everything was only about their race and gender. They want a world where nobody raised a hand and said “what about me,” because the only people allowed in the room were those whose needs had already been meet. They want the simplicity and power that comes with being the default.

So yes, Identity Politics are the threat to both the right and the left that its enemies are making it out to be. Because our system is still mostly white dudes, on both sides of the aisle. Their fear isn’t wrong; Identity Politics do threaten their way of life and their idea of progress and unity. Identity Politics will tear down everything they have built because everything they have built is oppressive and exclusionary and wrong.

We are not going back to a time where we were overlooked, dismissed, invalidated, and discounted. We are not going back to not existing. Our Identity Politics are here to stay.

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And some Introvert stuff:

If you’re an introvert, follow @introvertunites.

 

Just some of my various readings around the Internet last week.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Tumblr Discussions #62

*I love the character Finn, (from Star Wars 7), and I’m always here for some Finn love, in the form of Meta-analysis on this character. There are so many people out there ready to dump on the only Black lead character in a Star Wars movie. There are White people harshing on Finn because he’s too Black and Black people hatin’ on him because he’s not Black enough. This analysis gets it just right.

lj-writes

Finn’s subversive decency

Choosing to be kind is not choosing to be passive. It’s choosing to end the cycle of abuse… . It’s a courageous act in itself.

-Melissa Grey on Cinderella

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*Of all the arguments occurring on Tumblr, the ones I find most intriguing, are the ones about Fandom. There are a lot of those. It seems to be very young people’s way of ironing out all the rules and regulations involved in being  “real fans”. This one is a discussion of exactly what slash fanfiction is, and what purpose it serves.

stitchmediamix organafinn

i can’t believe y’all made me write this

halfhardtorock:

steflovessamwilson:

arkynn:

markdoesstuff:

poseysprostate:

There’s a piece of meta going around that’s basically saying that mlm should have greater authority on what kinds of content should be produced from the slash community and I think that’s such a huge load of bullshit?  Slash isn’t, and was never about mlm.  Mlm are not the subjects of slash and yaoi works, they’ve always been proxies for the expression of women’s sexual/romantic fantasies.

This is not a bad thing and isn’t a thing that should be changed.

Yes, increasing amounts of men are becoming content creators for slash and yes, there are more stories about healthy and realistic relationships between men but there will always be works that contain tropes that appeal to women?  The failings of individual women to make a distinction between a fictional mlm as a sexual proxy and a real mlm is not the responsibility of the slash fandom?

Take the case of male pornographers producing lesbian porn for straight male consumers.  Does the idea of wlw arguing that these works do not depict realistic wlw relationships make sense?  Clearly not because that genre is not about depicting actual wlw and actual wlw culture.  If wlw create pornography for wlw then they’re really shifting into a different genre.  Although the subjects are technically the same (as in women are portraying these proxies) they are participating in conceptually distinct genres with different audiences.

And with increasing amounts of women consuming works relating to mlm sex, there’s been financial incentive for gay pornography studios to produce more naturalistic, relationship focused movies.  Certain JGV works and Western studios like Cockyboys have increasing numbers of female fans.  If you imagine a progression on this theme and we eventually have a pornography studio produced by women, producing content for women, using men having m-m sex, would and should women be given authority over the content and themes of all gay pornography?

In the fantasy industry, there are creators, there are consumers, and there are the characters and entities that mediate the fantasy – the subjects.  In BL, yaoi, and most slash, these aren’t mlm.  They’re proxies.  There is no genre requirement that they know anything about a mlm lifestyle or mlm culture or anything like that.  In bara, gay interest films, and in an increasing amount of general works, yeah they’re mlm.  They’re created for mlm to identify with.  That’s great!  There is no reasonable need to demand for the former genres to change because they aren’t about mlm.  A misunderstanding of this point only serves to further demonize women in their own spaces.

I pretty much ignore all the ridiculous discourse I see on this hellhole of a site these days but this is so Bad that I had to comment

This is supremely creepy, and viewing queer or gay or mlm as “proxies” is dehumanizing and weird and I can’t believe there is discourse defending this terrible idea. This is Bad, you should feel Bad, and no. You cannot absolve yourself of harmful representation just because it’s a different genre or because the intent of said genre is not for the consumption of mlm. Also: plenty of us queer and gay men write and read slash for our own purposes and this ignores that. And fetishization. And a million other things!!!

Also: COCKYBOYS. ARE YOU FUCKING SERIOUS. THAT IS THE SITE YOU REFERENCED???? Oh my god.

“The failings of individual women to make a distinction between a fictional mlm as a sexual proxy and a real mlm is not the responsibility of the slash fandom?”

This is on the same level as folks arguing about how they can “separate fiction from reality” whenever someone critiques a popular show and/or ship that depicts abuse or bigotry.

Also, “Mlm are not the subjects of slash and yaoi works” – the word you may be looking for is “audience”. Mlm are the literal subjects of the fanfiction. They are the focus, they are the characters driving the story. That makes them the subjects.

“Slash isn’t, and was never about mlm. Mlm are not the subject of slash and yaoi works, they’ve always been proxies for the expression of women’s sexual/romantic fantasies.”

THIS IS LITERALLY THE DEFINITION OF FETISHISING. Viewing members of a marginalized group as proxies for your sexual fantasies is WHAT THE PROBLEM IS. This is VERY MUCH SO a bad thing and this post is disgusting.

“Take the case of male pornographers producing lesbian porn for straight male consumers. Does the idea of wlw arguing that these works do not depict realistic wlw relationships make sense?”

Yes?

When lesbians have such few accessible products of their own and are highly fetishized by straight male-produced lesbian porn, this critique is valid.

When wlw can’t even find their own products because 98% of lesbian porn is made for the straight male gaze, thats a problem.

When some of the states where wlw have the least rights and experience the most violence have the highest number of lesbian porn searches on pornhub, this criticism matters.

The overwhelming amount of fetishistic lesbian porn made for the straight male gaze is a problem and critiquing this fetish, the way it dehumanizes wlw and asking for actual, inoffensive, non-fetishistic portrayals of wlw sexuality is valid.

Also this was a shit comparison in a lot of ways because wlw deal with objectification in a way white cis dudes do not.

OP needs to step back and just rethink all the crap they just spewed under the guise of wanting to be all about/exploring women’s sexuality.

Fetishizing queer people is never okay (and there’s a difference between writing about/being invested queer male characters and fetishizing them and fandom largely hasn’t figured out how to find that difference…)

*Finally someone did make a list of the rules and regulations of writing fanfiction:

thespoonslobeliastole:

glumshoe:

glumshoe:

Everyone’s familiar with “Rule 34 of the Internet: there is porn of any conceivable subject”.

Is there also a rule that states that fandom abhors a vacuum of sexually available slim white men to ship with each other, and any piece of media that doesn’t include at least two will invent them?

Should a piece of popular media include one (1) thin white boy, failure to include another thin white boy to ship him with will result in the most popular ships in a particular fandom…

1.) importing another thin white boy from an unrelated piece of media to pair him with, regardless of reciprocated canon relationships with female characters…

2.) interpreting a non-human character as a thin white boy, even a much, much older antagonist…

3.) shipping the thin white character with himself…

Related: if a fandom DOES include at least two thin white boys, but neither of them are lead characters, they will become the most popular ship in that fandom, preferred over non-white lead male characters who display affection towards one another….

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*This is an interesting little meta on White people’s peculiar ideas about PoC and  European history. I am reminded that most people’s ideas about History come largely from TV shows and movies, and that even if they do read History books, those rarely mention race. Even so, most White people consider Whiteness the default, so the assumption is that there were no PoC present, and that apparently we did not come into existence until slavery.

abbiehollowdays dangercupcakemurdericing

On performing race and performing authenticity

dangercupcakemurdericing:

There are two important things to know before I begin this post. I am a black person with white parents and I belong to a medieval reenactment organization.

I suppose the other thing you need to know is that within this organization, which is mainly white, even more so than the general US population, there is a subset of white people who try to re-create the culture and costume of predominantly nonwhite cultures, even though the organization is technically focused on Western Europe.

Simultaneously there is another subset of people who feel that people of color who are involved in the organization, such as myself, should only portray ourselves as foreign visitors to Western cultures because anything else would be unrealistic. This is laughably untrue of course, but it certainly is a thought process some people have, to the point where they find my portrayal which actually is more plausible than most of the “I was kidnapped by Rromani people, sold to a sultan’s harem and then I ended up in Japan which is why I can wear a kimono” kind of back stories you hear.

But regardless if you dig deep enough on the Internet you find people complaining about how people color participating is ruining their immersion. Which I would’ve thought something that would’ve ruined their immersion would be people from completely different centuries spread across large geographic regions interacting with each other, but you can’t really expect logic from racists.

Anyway because of this I try to be as scrupulous with my research as possible, but honestly I like the subversion of taking this whitewashed history and smearing my blackness across it. Because I’m not making up a fiction actually, any more than any of the rest of the people involved in the organization are, the woman I portray is very much a person who could have existed and if that’s disquieting I want people to think about why that is disquieting to them.

Why is the myth of the lily white Europe only recently invaded by foreign barbarians so popular? Why is it impossible to imagine intercultural exchange that didn’t rest on a system of modern racial domination? I want my presence to make them question what they think they know and how they have to envision history to be comfortable with the present.

I know that some of the people of color involved envision that the person portraying as a white person, but I spent enough of my life being paved over with white bricks that I didn’t feel the need to do that and something I do for fun and I think it is disingenuous anyway, given all the sidestepping we do from the exactness of history.

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*Okay, there isn’t anything I needed to add to this, I just wanted to preserve this because of Bigskydreaming’s EPIC clapback on the laziness, and lack of imagination, of writers who use shitty excuses for not writing PoC into any of their narratives. 

bigskydreaming:

solvola:

bizarrolord:

hijadepavlov:

When will racists stop crying “censorship” every time audiences demand that creators produce better content if we’re expected to buy it?

We are not the fucking government, we aren’t throwing anyone in jail for being a talentless racist shitstain. We are exercising our right to free speech by calling a racist creator “racist”, just like the racist creator is exercising their right to free speech by publishing their shitty ass work.

Unfortunately, many times a creator’s work is personal first and what sells later.

And I think that unfairly smearing someone as “racist” when there’s a decent reason they might not be writing characters of color (such as the “write what you know” maxim applied to a white author who may not want to give offense when writing a non-white character because they don’t know enough about the experiences of being non-white to write a character like that well).

I personally always thought that this wasn’t about diversity and representation at all. It was about fannish entitlement hidden behind a cloak of progressiveness. (Further confirmed by people who keep asking for diverse characters constantly nitpicking the ones they do get because they’re essentially not Mary Sues/Gary Stus/wish-fulfillment characters.)

Well, judging from the trends, it looks like bigotry sells, so that’s not it. We just don’t want to give our money to someone who’s insufferably insensitive and clearly hasn’t read a single article on any social issue (other than conservative conspiracy theories about the next liberal boogeyman and the dooms of socialism, I guess), and if anti-SJW tripe isn’t censorship, then neither is this.

Your point in the second paragraph seems to be incomplete, but if you were going to say that “unfairly smearing someone as racist” is akin to censorship (maybe because it might affect sales, I dunno), once more with feeling, that’s not what censorship is – and I even dare you to give me a single example of someone or something being “unfairly smeared as racist”, because chances are that accusation is wholly pertinent, but people just don’t understand enough about the subject of racism to get why it’s pertinent – thus being more a problem of lack of research done (a very common ailment these days) than unfair accusations of racism with no base or substance.

Whenever someone or their work is accused of bigotry, the knee-jerk reaction is always to go on the defensive, on the denial, and bring up intent, when none of those things matter for what’s in question. Someone or something is racist when it aligns with white supremacist or nationalist beliefs, when it validates or is conducive to unjust racial dynamics or stereotypes against non-white people, when it instigates or nurtures negative beliefs and attitudes, hostile sentiment and normalized or even desirable violence towards non-white people – and all of this will happen if something is set up to do so regardless of intent. That’s why there’s that expression “intent isn’t magic”, because intent will not prevent the consequences of unintentional bigotry no matter how clear it might’ve been.

Lastly, as for your two more fandom and creativity-oriented points: I don’t think “writing what you know” is a good excuse, quite frankly, because it discourages people from doing their research and from getting out of their bubble, leading to precisely the kind of unfair and unrealistic homogeneous lack of diversity that media in general is well known for, from stories to characters to casting. It’s lazy, it’s unoriginal, it’s overdone, and it’s entirely unhelpful to various sizeable chunks of people in your audience. If you’re a white, cis, straight, non-disabled male author, “writing what you know” will alienate non-white people, women, LGBT people, and disabled people in your audience from your work entirely, at least as far as identification and relatability go. If that’s what’s desirable, then I think I must have missed the memo, because the artistic paradigm of reaching audiences as far and wide as possible must have changed while I was sleeping.

If you use that excuse to justify not writing diversity, then people will hold you accountability for being lazy and backwards, and under free speech, people have every right to do so, just as you are allowed to retort or not even listen.

Regarding fandom entitlement, to keep it short, I think fandom entitlement looks like fans harassing actors and producers because their abusive ship wasn’t made canon. I think it looks like fans sending death or rape threats to actors of color and female actors (or both at the same time) because they weren’t happy to see an interracial canon couple on screen. I think it looks like fandom being in uproar every time someone dares say something remotely critical even when it’s pertinent. I think “only positivity always, no criticism/“hate” ever” looks like fandom entitlement, too. I think harboring abusers, violent bigots, rapists, and pedophiles in the name of “fandom positivity” looks quite like it also.

To me, fandom entitlement definitely doesn’t look like fans expecting media created last year or this year to be sufficiently diverse and progressive, it doesn’t look like fans expecting their existence to be acknowledged and portrayed respectfully and in a constructive manner, and it also doesn’t look like fans being critical of any attempts at diversity that end up doing more harm than good, or no good at all, because they were written by someone who “wrote what they knew” and didn’t go and do their damn research.

To add on real quick, falling back on the ‘write what you know’ maxim is bullshit, because since time immemorial, audiences, publishers and Hollywood have been perfectly comfortable expecting black writers to write white characters. Its not actually about writing what you want first, and what sells later, because for marginalized writers, the issue before them has ALWAYS been when sitting down to begin a book or a screenplay, they have to ask themselves – are they going to write what they know, are they going to represent themselves in their own work, or are the chances of such a work getting published so slim that they’re better off writing about white characters whose experiences don’t reflect theirs at all, etc.

Death to the write what you know misinterpretation, because it is bullshit and it has always been bullshit. First off, that quote has NEVER been justification for confining your creative output to the narrow margin of what you have personally experienced in life. It is about building your story or your characters around a core foundation of something that resonates with you and your experiences, something you have intimate knowledge of and can build from in terms of mood, its about passion and forming a connection with your work and through it laying down a road for readers to connect with you and your underlying reasons for writing something. It is THEMATIC, not SUPERFICIAL.

If write what you know were as sacrosanct as people would like to pretend in conversations like this, entire genres of fiction would not exist. Fantasy would not exist. Science fiction would not exist. Mystery novels would solely be the province of retired cops and detectives. Only veterans would write military adventures. Medical and political thrillers? Only doctors and politicians, thanks. You would need two masters degrees and a doctorate in historical fields of study to even be able to pitch something set a thousand years ago. And forget about including characters of a different gender, class, or educational background than your own!

Fuck off. That has never been what write what you know means, AND EVERYONE KNOWS IT. Write what you know means when penning a story about a boy wizard discovering magic and adventure and an impossible destiny no one can relate to, ground it in emotions people CAN identify with, imbue him with feelings of loneliness and neglect and a desperate yearning to be wanted and loved and appreciated that you can channel directly from your own soul onto the paper for people to pick up on and use as their grounding rod while venturing into your imagined world that holds very little similarity to anything anyone knows from the real world, other than the emotions that underpin everything in it.

Write what you know means when writing a script about a boy on a distant desert planet beneath two sons discovering his inner power as he sets off on a quest to destroy an imperialistic tyrant, center that story around archetypal narrative structures and themes that have resonated with audiences since the beginning of time – the simple farmboy who rises to greatness, fathers and sons, family honor, redemption and sins of the father, etc, etc.

Write what you know is a guideline, unless you are writing a goddamn autobiography you are expected and even encouraged to use what you know as a baseline template you step outside of to pull other experiences that AREN’T yours closer to, using your actual experiences to connect audiences to the parts of the story that neither you or them can automatically connect to because they are FICTIONAL EXPERIENCES.

If you’re not actually writing a goddamn autobiography, write what you know is not actually a computer function that copies and pastes your life directly onto the page and punishes any deviation from that material with a slap on the wrist and career ruination. No reader in the history of reading has ever put down a science fiction adventure with a disappointed frown and a ‘whoa whoa whoa, I thought I was buying a book by an actual intergalactic space captain who know what the hell he was talking about when repelling pirates trying to take his ship but this dude is just a fucking librarian from Sacramento? Hell no, I am addressing this in my one star review and telling all my friends not to try this author, he is a FRAUD.’

Write what you know didn’t stop Tolkien from reinventing the fantasy genre with the adventures of four foot tall hairy barefoot badasses trekking across a landscape of walking trees and talking eagles to throw a magic ring into a volcano. Yet somehow, it seems to bar stories about black Chosen Ones slaying dragons in medieval inspired settings because that’s unrealistic, black kids don’t fit in fictional settings like that.

Write what you know doesn’t stop fans from becoming ‘fluent’ in made up languages like Elvish and Klingon, but three lines of Spanish in a story somehow pulls them right out of it.

Write what you know doesn’t stop schoolteachers from googling espionage and military jargon and researching the most obscure factoids of crimes and serial killers and the lives of famous spies or historical military figures and going on to write bestselling crime or spy or political thrillers. Yet somehow it seems to block any attempts to put similar work and research and attention to detail into anything related to non-white characters, lives or experiences like the second google realizes they’re asking about something non-white it clutches its pearls and refuses to divulge anything but a 404 Error Not Found screen.

Okay, so I lied, I didn’t add on anything real quick, but let me just sum up real fast.

In conclusion: fuck your write what you know. It has never stopped white writers from writing beyond the boundaries of their experiences, researching the crap out of shit they know nothing about, or kept white readers from identifying with characters they can not possibly have anything in common with other than underlying thematic connections, on account of, y’know, NOT BEING FOUR FOOT TALL HAIRY BAREFOOT HOBBITS FROM MIDDLE FUCKING EARTH.

Writers have always been able to write characters who have different life experiences than them.

Readers have always been able to connect with characters who have different life experiences than them.

Refusing to write about non-white characters? Refusing to read about non-white characters?

It’s not because you can’t. It’s not because it wouldn’t be authentic. It’s not because some magical rule of writing prohibits you and you’ll lose your writing card for daring to venture outside your margin of personal life experiences.

It’s for one reason and one reason only.

YOU. JUST. DON’T. WANT. TO.

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*I just liked this:

What “Ghetto” Names Really Mean

robregal:

feministsmadefromfire:

“Tinashe” –  Means “God is with us” in Shona ( An African language spoken by nearly 80 percent of people in Zimbabwe.)

“Lakeisha” – A Swahili name meaning “favorite one.”

“Ashanti” –  Name of a powerful African empire in West Africa.

“Tanisha” – Hausa of West Africa name meaning “born on Monday.”

“Zola” – Means “quiet, tranquil” in Zulu.

“Amandla” –  Zulu and Xhosa word meaning “power”. The word was a popular rallying cry in the days of resistance against Apartheid.

“Zendaya” – Means “ To Give Thanks” in Shona

“Latonia”  A Latin name. Latonia was the mother of Diana in Roman mythology.

“Lulu” – Swahili and Muslim name meaning “pearl” or “precious.”

“Ciara” –  Means “dark-haired” in Irish Gaelic

“Lateefah” – A North African name meaning “gentle and pleasant.”

“Mercedes” – Means “Gracious gifts/Benefits) in Spanish

“Kaya” –  Ghanaian name meaning “stay and don’t go back.”

“Amara” –  The Swahili word amara, meaning “urgent business.” Also the Hindu name meaning “immortal.”

“Shanika” – African Bantu name, meaning “young one from the wilderness.

“Zuri” – Means “beautiful” in Swahili.

“Onika” – Word of African origin meaning “warrior.”

JUST BECAUSE A NAME SOUNDS DIFFERENT DOES NOT MEAN IT’S “RATCHET” OR “GHETTO” THEY HAVE BEAUTIFUL MEANINGS.

DON’T BE IGNORANT, LEARN.

Reblog every time it hits the dash.

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*I hope this is a real movie, and not people just trolling me. If so, I’m here for it!

entertainingtheidea:

Watch the official trailer for J.D. Dillard’s sci-fi drama Sleight, out in U.S. theaters on April 7th.

The story follows a young street magician (played by Collateral Beauty’s Jacob Latimore) who is left to care for his little sister after their parents passing and turns to illegal activities to keep a roof over their heads. When he gets in too deep, his sister is kidnapped and he is forced to use his magic and brilliant mind to save her.

Seychelle Gabriel, Dulé Hill, SNL’s Sasheer Zamata, and Storm Reid (who will soon lead the cast of Ava DuVernay’s A Wrinkle in Time) are co-starring.

 

And some Introvert thoughts:

introvertunites: “ If you’re an introvert, follow @introvertunites. ”

Tumblr Humor #321

Just some discussions we get up to on Tumblr involving deep Pop Culture issues, like:

I will always be a firm supporter of Human/Alien First Contact headcanons, that involve a Roomba.

aethersea:

sepulchritude:

on the topic of humans being the intergalactic “hold my beer” species: imagine an alien stepping onto a human starship and seeing a space roomba™ with a knife duct taped onto it, just wandering around the ship

it doesn’t have any special intelligence. it’s just a normal space roomba. there are other space roombas on the ship and they don’t have knives. it’s just this one. knife space roomba has full clearance to every room in the ship. occasionally crew members will be talking and then suddenly swear and clutch their ankle. knife space roomba putters off, leaving them to their mild stab wounds.

“what is the point?” asks the alien as another crew member casually steps over the knife-wielding robot. “is it to test your speed and agility?”

“no it doesn’t really go that fast,” replies the captain.

“does it teach you to stay ever-vigilant?”

“I mean I guess so but that’s more of a side effect.”

“does it weed out the weak? does it protect you from invaders? do repeated stabbings let your species heal more quickly in the future?”

“it doesn’t stab very hard, it gets us more than it gets our enemies, and no, but that sounds cool — someone write that down.”

“but then what is its purpose?”

“I don’t know,” the captain says, leaning down to give the space roomba an affectionate pat. “it just seemed cool”

this is the dumbest idea I’ve ever heard but I thought about it for five seconds and realized that if I were, say, a random communications officer onboard this ship and someone taped a knife to a roomba it would take maybe three weeks before even I was inordinately fond of Stabby. I would be proud of Stabby when I met up with my other spacefleet friends for space coffee, I would tell them about the time Stabby got the second mate in the ankle five seconds before the fleet admiral beamed on board and she swore in seven different languages in front of high command.

also by the fourth day Stabby would be in the ship’s log, he’d have little painted-on insignia, people would salute him as he went by, and someone would hook up a twitter account to tweet maniacal laughter and/or a truly terrible knock-knock joke every time he managed to nick someone.

Someone would almost positively attach a tiny camera and live stream Stabby’s adventures to a media account. Bets would be taken on who is next. Bets have to be ordered to stop being taken on who is next because it becomes a problem for multiple reasons. Bets are taken but quietly on who is next.

At some point someone realizes that they haven’t seen Stabby in a while, no one has seen Stabby in over a day. The cam is running but is completely dark. The ship basically stalls out as everyone stops what they are doing to search for their friend. The confused aliens don’t understand why this nonessential and kind of dangerous piece of equipment has got the entire ship in a fit of worry.

After almost two hours, someone thinks to check a little-used storage room in the belly of the ship. As soon as the door is open, Stabby rolls out and jabs their ankle and then whirls off down the hall about its business. Stabby followed someone in without being noticed, and got accidentally shut in. A ship wide announcement chastises everyone about looking before they shut doors.

“But the doors are automatic,” says the newest alien crewmate.

“I know,” says Kzil’tir. They’ve stopped asking. The explanation is always because humans.

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*I’m also here for Star Trek humor, that includes Spock:
fuck-bones:

Starfleet Admirals get worried when Captain Kirk bursts into their offices.

Starfleet Admirals get a little scared when Captain Kirk bursts into their offices followed by Commander Spock.

Starfleet Admirals get fucking terrified when Captain Kirk bursts into their offices with both Commander Spock and Doctor McCoy by his sides.

I love this because I get why the admiral is scared. Kirk bursts in by himself, that’s troubling but not full red alert yet. He’s followed by Spock and oh shit it’s yellow alert because whatever Kirk’s cooking up, Spock is on board with it and if Spock is on board then it means it’s Logical and they’ll probably get their way. But then sometimes they both have insane schemes that somehow Kirk talks Spock into but if McCoy is with them then RED ALERT, RED ALERT, THE VOICE OF REASON IS NOW ANOTHER AGENT OF CHAOS AND WHATEVER THEY WANT THEY’LL GET EVEN IF THEY HAVE TO STRAP FOUR WARP CORES TOGETHER AND RIDE THAT SHIT BACK TO THE MESOZOIC ERA TO DO IT

And if Spock and McCoy arrive without Kirk? oooooohhhH SHIT!!!

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Okay, you have to read this one all the way through. I simply could not stop laughing at this.

popelizbet-blog:
“ michi-draconis:
“ shitroughdrafts:
“ April 8, 2015
Dear Mr. Kerin,
It was brought to my attention by your neighbor, John Flink, that you have two garden gnomes on your front lawn that that were not approved by the HOA before...

April 8, 2015

Dear Mr. Kerin,

It was brought to my attention by your neighbor, John Flink, that you have two garden gnomes on your front lawn that that were not approved by the HOA before installation. Please adhere to the guidelines (see Appropriate Lawn Decor on page 3) and remove them within five business days, or you will be fined.

Ellis Hills is a beautiful neighborhood, and we keep it that way by sticking to these rules!

Thanks!

Linda Hoyt, HOA President

 

 April 9, 2015

Dear Mr. Kerin,

Mr. Flink emailed me this afternoon and informed me that there are now five gnomes on your front lawn. He also said that they are all facing his house.

I don’t know three extra gnomes showed up (unless they’re breeding LOL), or why they are now facing his house. But please be advised that you are now in violation of our Allowed Quantities of Lawn Decor rule (see page 7).

You have four days until you are fined. Please address this issue ASAP.

Thanks!

Linda Hoyt, HOA President

 

April 10, 2015

Dear Mr. Kerin,

I drove by your house this morning on the way to drop my children off at school and saw your lawn. There are now over a dozen garden gnomes in your yard, all facing Mr. Flink’s house. A few of these have been placed in sexually suggestive positions. I do not think garden gnomes come in these positions, which means that someone (I’m not saying you) placed them as such. Regardless, they violate the board’s rule on Appropriate Lawn Décor Positions on page 9.

Mr. Henrys, you have three days left to comply with the board’s rules, or you will be fined.

Are you getting these emails?

Thanks!

Linda Hoyt, HOA President

 

April 11, 2015

Dear Mr. Kerin,

I was emailed a picture of your lawn this morning by your neighbor John Flink, and was surprised to find that there are now close to thirty gnomes in your lawn. Not only are they all staring directly at his house, they are now also sexually explicit. After a quick Yahoo search, I could not find any store that sold such “X rated” gnomes. This gives me the impression that you made them yourself.

Mr. Kerin, I don’t know where you’re getting the time or the money to create these monstrosities, but they will not be tolerated. We have children in this neighborhood.

Please be advised that you have two days left before incurring fines.

FYI you are now also in violation of our Sexually Explicit Lawn Décor rule on page 17. Until today, I was not aware this rule even existed.

Thanks!

Linda Hoyt, HOA President

April 12, 2015

Dear Mr. Kerin,

I was woken up by a phone call from John Flink at 6AM this morning. He was threatening to call the police. We have never had the police called in this neighborhood. Not even once. I calmed him down and went over to see what the problem was.

Mr. Kerin, the only time I’ve ever seen an orgy was in the movie Caligula but the scene your gnomes depict on your front lawn makes Caligula look PG. The gnomes are in positions I haven’t ever even imagined, and even if I could have imagined them, I wouldn’t have done so with gnomes!

There are over one hundred of them. I could barely see any grass through the limbs and appendages of the disgusting little men.

One gnome in particular is wearing a shirt that says “John Flink” on it and it is wearing a horse mask. Two other gnomes are treating him like a horse.

This is in direct violation of an HOA rule that the HOA just decided to make. Please see Sexually Explicit Depictions of Neighbors as Lawn Decor in the new edition of the HOA guidelines attached as a PDF.

You have until tomorrow, Mr. Kerin. Also, John Flink has called a lawyer.

Thanks!

Linda Hoyt, HOA President

April 13, 2015

Dear Mr. Kerin,

I don’t know how you did it, but thank you for removing all of the gnomes. I’m glad we could avoid getting the authorities involved!

Since you managed to do it before five business days, there will be no fine, just a warning.

As a reminder, please do not place any decorations in your yard without direct approval from the board.

Thanks!

Linda Hoyt, HOA President

 

April 14, 2015

Dear Mr. Kerin,

It was just brought to my attention that there is a bright pink decorative flamingo in the middle of your front lawn.

I have also been informed that this lawn flamingo is wearing a thong.

If you do not remove this flamingo within five business days, expect a follow up from Kelly Lawson, as she is taking over as HOA President. As of today I have resigned.

Thanks!

Linda Hoyt

 

Seriously though, if this was me, my next victim, after it was all over with that one neighbor, would have been Linda Holt. I would’ve started out with just one gnome on her lawn and escalated from there, but have the gnomes doing something completely different, yet still unwatchable.
Source: shitroughdrafts
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*Yeah, this does sound like an introvert problem:
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Well obviously, the fly is  planning to give you some kind of life threatening sickness. He’s got 3 days:

takahashireiko:

i rly hate when flies rub their hands together. what the fuck are you planning you little asshole you have a lifespan of like 3 days

Source: aihidaka
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Yep! This is totally introvert humor:
justaphage:

You:

Me, an Intellectual:

Introvert Linkage

Here’s a roundup of posts and articles about being an introvert. I foind most of these to be hilarious, and for the most part kind of true about how I think, most especially about people.

There’s  also a  the idea that the Myers Briggs personality tests are  a bunch of bunk’em but I’m okay with that. Even if these personality assessments aren’t any more real than horoscopes, its still a lot of fun, and I enjoyed reading these articles.

General Introversion: I found a lot more articles about genral introversion than articles specific to women. Keep in mind that most of these are probably written to the standard of White males,  because female introverts are so rare, and most people who study this sort of thing, use White men as the default.

http://www.humanmetrics.com/personality/intj-learning-style

How Not To Be Hated By An INTJ

http://www.intjvision.com/

http://personalitygrowth.com/an-in-depth-look-behind-the-intj-stare/

 

On Women Introverts: It was a lot easier this time finding posts and articles about female introverts this time.

http://livingunabridged.com/31-realities-life-intj-woman/

http://www.quietrev.com/introverted-black-girl/

http://www.clutchmagonline.com/2012/05/the-angry-black-introvert/

https://oddblackgirl.blogspot.com/2012/09/the-black-introvert.html

http://www.gradientlair.com/post/30536301997/the-black-introvert-struggle

https://getpocket.com/a/read/1096932327

https://owlcation.com/social-sciences/INTJ-women-A-rare-Myers-Briggs-Category

http://introvertdear.com/news/what-its-like-being-an-intj-woman/

http://www.intjvision.com/intj-female/

Oh, and here’s a link to a page full of links:

http://www.candiddiversions.com/2014/05/life-as-intj-woman.html

 

On Black Introverts: It was hard finding posts on this topic, that weren’t racially insulting, so I just left those out. I’m not surprised to find that most of them were on Yahoo Answers. I don’t fuck with Yahoo as a source for anything other than my email, as it’s quite possibly one of the most racist, and least informative, of all the search engines. It’s like Fox News for the internet.

http://verysmartbrothas.com/on-successfully-navigating-life-as-a-black-male-introvert/

http://black-introvert-confessions.tumblr.com/

 

 

 

Political Stuff

You can skip this if you’re just not in the mood for this shit right now, but apparently I like to start my mornings off pissed or something because I always do this. By evening, I’m pretty tapped out, but my mornings are all fired up.

This is just a link to a post that articulates my general aesthetic right now. There is absolutely no amount of excuse making by Trump voters that’s going to fly with me. Don’t try it. It ain’t gonna work. My ears are closed to such people. The stakes are too high for me, and people like me, to listen to anymore wishy-washy, namby-pamby, kumbaya, let’s all get along , bullshit from these people.The rest of us can’t afford to be complacent, or give Trump a chance.

And yeah, read the comments too!

http://freethoughtblogs.com/affinity/2016/11/23/a-comment/

Media Link Roundup

 

Here’s a little roundup of new trailers and articles I thought were interesting. Most of these trailers have been shown at the NYCC.

This show seems to be a spinoff of Dr. Who. It takes place in that particular universe, at least. I’m only a middling fan of Dr. Who, but I have watched many of its spinoffs., and this looks intriguing. I’ll check it out when it makes it to my TV, although its not set to broadcast in the States until next year.

 

 

I actually enjoyed the first John Wick. Once you accept its  silly premise, it moves very smoothly from one action set piece to the next. I also like it when Keanu Reeves plays angry, sullen, and/or irritated. He does that very well.

 

 

I remember watching this TV show with my little sisters. They were obsessed with it, while I just thought it was hilarious. I do like this version though, which seems to take its premise somewhat more seriously, although it still looks a little cheesy. Hopefully the fight scenes are more ambitious than in the original series.

 

 

I know nothing about this show but what’s in the trailer. I do love a good Horror/Comedy, so I’ll check it out, and give you guys the lowdown. I’m a big McGinley fan too, so I’m looking forward to this and expect it to be hilarious.

Stan Against Evil Awakens November 2nd With Back-to-Back Episodes

 

I still don’t like that Danny Rand is not Asian and is being portrayed by the still completely unimpressive Finn Jones, (Who?) Anyway it is on Netflix soon and I plan to at least watch the first couple of episodes so that I can hold an intelligent conversation about it without turning into a complete rage-monster. Yes, I’m biased against it, because Luke Cage would be hard to top no matter what, but I will nevertheless go into this show trying to find some good in it, and if it proves to actually be good, I won’t hesitate to say so.

This isn’t set to air until May 17th, 2017, so I have plenty of time to get used to the idea.

 

 

 

Here’s a list of links to articles, interviews and posts on Westworld, Luke Cage, and reading and writing Diversity :

TV Review: LUKE CAGE

I Got Five On It: Marvel’s Luke Cage

http://www.newstatesman.com/politics/feminism/2016/04/why-do-we-give-robots-female-names-because-we-dont-want-consider-their

https://www.inverse.com/article/21654-westworld-sex-robot-consent-rape-culture-science

https://www.inverse.com/article/21675-westworld-psychology-milgram-stanford-prison-experiment-black-hat

An Interview with Daniel José Older

View story at Medium.com

View story at Medium.com

View story at Medium.com

View story at Medium.com

Captain America Civil War Meta

One of the reasons I like Tumblr so much is that its much easier to find in depth analysis of some of my favorite movies and characters, that go well beyond your typical, glossy movie reviews. In fact, Tumblr is almost famous for this.

*I do actually like Tony despite my criticism of this character. I sympathize with Tony and his efforts to try to do good, and understand he’s gone through a lot of trauma he’s simply not dealing with very well. But at the same time, I also acknowledge that this does not excuse Tony’s fuckups. I like Tony because in the Iron Man movies he is willing to acknowledge when he’s messed up and apologize for his mistakes. That’s not the problem. The problem is that he goes on to make all new, horrible mistakes.

starkassembled

a piece about Tony Stark’s mental state throughout the MCU [spoilers below cut]

Tony Stark, of the original team, is the only civilian after Bruce. But there are some key differences between he and Bruce. Bruce is treated delicately by the team after he comes back from the Hulk. They give him his space, let him listen to his chill out remix. They let him come down in his own time. I also think that Bruce has demonstrated that he has a solid handle on himself. He grapples with a huge amount of guilt (and anger), but he’s never demonstrated any signs of trauma. He’s upset by some of the destruction he causes, but he’s found a balance, probably in his own research into ways to calm himself and balance his anger, that’s helped him be able to live with himself without snapping.

Tony Stark doesn’t have that. Tony is a civilian, with no proper training other than the training he’s put himself through in order to operate the suit. Sure, he was a military weapons contractor most of his life, he’s been around military most of his life, but he’s never seen violence and combat like he has since the kidnapping.

Tony’s also demonstrated that he really has no healthy way to handle his guilt, his pain. He bottles things up and he shoves them to the side to deal with later. Except he doesn’t want to deal with it later. So he tinkers and he builds and with each subsequent betrayal of his trust throughout his film appearances, it only serves to increase his paranoia, increase his anxiety, make his survivor’s guilt that much deeper.

Tony has slowly been losing his mind since his kidnapping in IM1. He’s nearly killed in a bombing by one of his own stolen weapons. He’s held hostage by a terror cell, he’s learning that his weapons that he built to protect his country are somehow ending up in the hands of terrorists and murderers. So when he goes home, he immediately shuts down his weapons manufacturing and starts building a way to get his weapons out of those hands.

He learns that his father figure of the last 30 years has betrayed him, is trying to take over his company, has been selling his weapons to terrorists all this time and tried to have him killed.

He’s grappling with the guilt and the weight of the lives and livelihoods destroyed by his stolen weapons that he can never make amends for. And then he’s dying, he tries to give his life away to his friends while pushing them away to spare them any pain his inevitable death may cause.

And then months later he’s flying through a wormhole, his suit goes dead and all he can do is watch as a nuke tears apart the Chitauri fleet before his eyes as his exit gets smaller and smaller. He could die here. Die floating out in the silence and dark expanse of space. He won’t get a burial. He won’t be laid to rest beside his mother.

But he manages to fall out at the last moment, but every night he’s back there, back in space, unsure if the blast will reach him before he chokes to death.

He has no time for any therapy, because the world always needs saving. He continues to work, his PTSD and survivor’s guilt gets worse and worse, eating away at him. He builds himself an army of armors to try and keep himself and his friends safe.

*(Technically, he does have time for therapy, as the final scene of The Avengers shows. He just refuses to get any more, and chooses the wrong therapist.)

He tries to give it up for Pepper, because it’s what Pepper wants and he’d do anything for her. But he can’t give it up, not when there are innocent lives at risk. So he makes new suits. He makes the Iron Legion. He’s trying to find a way to protect the world while being able to retire. To get some rest. To find some peace. Hopefully to get some therapy. But that time never comes because in all his paranoid efforts to build peace, he builds destruction instead. Ultron tries to end the world and the team stops him, but at the cost of a country. At the cost of thousands of lives. And he tries to do his best to save as many people as he could, but it’s too much.

Keep reading

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*Bucky was born in a different era nd under very different circumstances than Tony, but still, contrast Bucky’s methods of coping with the trauma of the things he’s done, with Tony’s methods.

“But I Did It”- Guilt in Captain America: Civil War

I came away from Civil War really struck by how overwhelming the theme of guilt was. It motivates people to do selfless things, it motivates people to do selfish things, and it’s the driving force behind the ultimate showdown between Bucky and Tony. What the movie does though is contrast the fashion people deal with their guilt.

Tony and Bucky are both people consumed by guilt. In both cases it’s guilt over things they ultimately had no control over. Tony couldn’t have predicted that his parents would die with so many things left unsaid between them and him, yet when we first see him he’s reliving that moment over and over. Tony is steeped in even more guilt when his actions in creating Ultron are thrown back in his face by a victim’s mother. He’s even guilty that his teammates hold him responsible for their containment. The crux of the issue is that Tony just can’t let it go. He’s willing to stare his flaws in the face, but he’s unwilling to forgive himself for those flaws, which leads to an issue I’ll get to in a second. Tony is stuck in an endless guilt loop. His attempts to fix things always seem to lead to more issues that lead to more guilt. He’s understandably frustrated because he’s just so driven to try to make things RIGHT that he’s willing to clash hard and often with people who don’t agree with his ideas. Ultimately the government might be right that the Avengers should have some limitations put on them, but Tony is so desperate to try to fix or at least ease his mind over what he feels like he’s responsible for that he makes agreements and does things without looking at every angle. He flogs himself over his mistakes, but he can’t even really articulate the real problem: acceptance that sometimes things happen no matter what and you’re going to have to live with them.

*Now contrast that  with what Steve says to Wanda after the incident in Africa. These are exactly  Steve’s words to her.

It’s Bucky who actually voices what is Tony’s issue as well as his. As Steve tries to tell his friend that it was Hydra’s fault and that “it wasn’t really you doing those things” during his assassin days, Bucky calmly and quietly looks up and says “but I did it”. It doesn’t matter to Bucky who MADE him do it. It doesn’t matter to him that he was just the weapon. What matters to him is that he did it. He has to live with that. He has to see something he caused happen in his mind over and over again. He ultimately takes responsibility, and in doing that he echoes something Steve says earlier about being willing to shoulder the blame over things that go wrong. What Steve doesn’t address is not just being willing to bear the consequences of mistakes, but being willing to move forward from there.

That’s the real issue. Not whose fault it ultimately is, but the fact that both Tony and Bucky, in their minds, DID IT. They have to live with that. They have to live with something that no amount of reassurance from outsiders can fix. All the love and understanding in the world can’t help someone who won’t move out of the guilt cycle. And in the end that’s why Tony, in spite of knowing Bucky had no control over his actions in killing the Starks, attempts to kill him. I think it would be easy to claim Tony is motivated purely by revenge, but I think it’s more than that. Tony of anyone should be able to understand someone causing something horrible inadvertently. He’s been in Bucky’s place. He’s caused damage without really knowing it. He KNOWS Bucky was programmed, even calls him the “Manchurian Candidate” at one point proving he completely believes Bucky had no control over his actions. Part of the reason Tony can’t accept Bucky’s moral innocence in what he did is because he can’t accept his own. Tony can’t consider forgiving Bucky because he can’t forgive himself. Tony’s generally a reasonable person, but he’s willing to flat out murder Bucky in the end even though he’s aware Bucky was just the weapon that HYDRA used to kill his parents. Bucky didn’t have a choice in the matter, Tony knows that, but he violently tries to hold him responsible in the same way he mentally holds himself. “Do you even remember them” he lashes out at Bucky, sure that the person involved in causing the determining factor in his life can’t understand the magnitude of what he’s done. Can’t understand the weight of feeling responsible for some many lives. He unwittingly echoes the woman who cornered him in the elevator earlier in the movie. He’s suddenly in her place reacting the exact same way.

“I remember them all.”

That line, right there. If Tony had been able to pause in his rage and grief for a second he would have realized that out of ANYONE he’s come across, Bucky gets it the best. Tony lives with all the ghosts of what he’s caused. So does Bucky. Bucky voices what Tony can’t. No matter what people tell you, you are still going to feel guilty that you did something no matter the reason and every incident can still be fresh and painful and seared on your memory whether it really deserves to be there or not. Maybe you had false information, maybe you didn’t have control, but it still happened. You still did it. You’re still going to have to live with it. And if you don’t forgive yourself to some degree you’re not really going to function. You can see Bucky trying to figure out how to live with himself. He can at least voice that he’s not sure he’s worth it, voice his uncertainty. You see him cringing at the scythe of destruction he is (ie. “what did I do”). You see him figuring out how to live with guilt without needing to punish himself.

Tony says the problem without really saying it. “And then, and then, and then”. The cycle over and over and over. He pushes people away because of it. He tortures himself because of it. And it will eat him alive until he is able to step forward.

*Throughout all of the films we witness three different methods of dealing with trauma, Steve’s way, Bucky’s, and Tony’s. Of the three, Steve and Bucky deal with their trauma in a more healthy manner. Steve’s method is to confront what he’s done head on, process it, and deal with the emotions from it. Bucky’s method is to mentally and physically withdraw. After he gets his mind back, his first impulse is  to retire from the field of play. After the main plot is over, his instinct is to, once again, completely withdraw. Not hunt down Hydra or get revenge. And Tony chooses to not deal with it at all, to shove it aside.

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*This entire meta is an echo of the post I wrote about Tony’s motivations earlier. (https://tvgeekingout.wordpress.com/2016/07/19/on-the-right-captain-america-and-iron-man/)

Tony was definitely a villain in the comic books, during Civil War, and frankly, he didn’t come across looking too good in this movie, either.

jbananabarnes

I got words.

See that curb party Steve and Bucky were giving Tony at the end of the trailer actually made me feel really bad for him, and that’s interesting. Because while there is something pitiable about Tony in the MCU, the Tony I’m familiar with from the comics, is not. And certainly not during Civil War. In the comics Tony was objectively wrong during Civil War. His methods of getting what he wanted during that run were unforgivable.

But the Tony we’ve been working with in the MCU is decidedly less in love with himself. His egotism is largely for show, because we’ve seen him have panic attacks and display acts of poor self care. But the line about also being Steve’s friend seemed really out of place to me. Because they have never really been friendly. They’ve been civil and work on the same superhero team but for Age of Ultron’s part it was them fighting with each each other over how to handle their problem. So I can’t help but think a lot of this comes from if its because of Tony’s genuine lack of self confidence says he puts a lot of stock into what Steve thinks of him. The MCU has made Tony into someone whowants to do good, but doesn’t actually have the tools to enact that good or have a real understanding of what good is in the real world with it’s moral complexities. It’s not that his intentions aren’t genuine, but this kind of altruism isn’t in his nature. He understands the world in a very binary way. Something is good, or it’s bad. A lack of awareness of grey areas makes it difficult for him to make the best judgement when put in a “hero” position. When he does good there is a lotof collateral damage. And maybe he needs Steve, this kind of universally accepted pillar of good, to agree that what he does and his actions are good so he can justify himself to himself. Because Tony’s solutions to difficult problems, historically, have been “kill myself’ which doesn’t indicate that he’s got a whole lot of self worth, or someone who thinks the only means of being heroic is through a self sacrificing Hail Mary. In all of the Iron Man films and both Avengers films, I’ve never felt as though being a hero was something Tony felt comfortable falling into, there’s always been a certain uncertainty.

But, in turn, I don’t think Steve’s ever thought highly of Tony, I think he’s been surprised by Tony but goes into most interactions with him ready to be annoyed or disappointed. And Tony’s never had like, real friends. Rhodey (and arguably Pepper, and even Bruce being a friend of circumstance) being a singular exception. And now he’s got this Avengers crew who’s actually got his back, it probably never occurred to him that Steve’s got baggage too. He probably doesn’t see Steve as a real person, but as this mythological figure because he grew up while Steve was solidly frozen. Steve’s always been propaganda to him, something his father – who he grew up resentful of – spoke highly of. Steve’s probably never been a real person to him. He’s never treated him like one. I can imagine Tony would hugely misinterpret “tolerance” for “friendship” especially from someone he hasn’t bothered to actually know as a human being.

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radialarch

so i’ve seen quite a bit of doylist discussion about the steve-tony relationship and how marvel is trying to use a long comics history as shorthand in the mcu, but i keep thinking about it from a watsonian point of view. and here’s the thing: tony stark is not very good at friends.

tony is self-centered, antagonistic, and sarcastically belligerent on the best of days (and i say this with great affection); he is not an easy person to be friends with. tony knows this. and tony has, i think, decided very early on that he doesn’t care to sand down his rough edges for the sake of friends. it’s very possible that his first friend in the world was edwin jarvis – and that says a lot, that the people tony grows close to are, by and large, in some ways obligated not to leave him.

because that’s what tony does to people: he is intensely tony at them until they leave. and if they don’t, then maybe – maybe that means they love him. this is the tony stark model of friendship. it’s not a very healthy model, granted, but no one’s ever accused tony stark of being well-adjusted.

and then there’s steve.

Keep reading

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nthnystrk

some civil war (mostly tony) thoughts

ok so i’ve just come out of my fifth viewing of civil war and clearly i have many Feelings about the movie, but i have many Words about tony stark in this movie, so help me god.

Keep reading

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*And now some Bucky meta. For some 7o + years Bucky has had everyone inside his head but himself. Finally he’s free of outside influences, and his first instinct is to withdraw from the world and live off the grid. He just wants to be left the hell alone, and in relative peace. Contrast that with Steve’s method of coping with what’s happened to him, which is keep fighting, until he finds a reason to live.

twinagonies

and now BUCKY

god bucky is so sad in this film. but i wanna get to how we get to that first credits scene, and why i love it even though it hurts like a motherfucker.

so what’s he been doing since we last saw him in a museum? living in the saddest apartment in bucharest, eating plums, trying not to murder anybody. literally the saddest possible goal.

beyond the exchange of a dispassionate bucky saying “yeah, that’s a good strategy for taking me in,” the most telling moment for me is when steve assures him, “this wasn’t your fault, you had no choice.”

and he says, “but I still did it.”

bucky is not steve–he doesn’t hold choice and agency and decision as the paramount ideal of freedom. i’m not sure that bucky feels guilt, or anything like it. he feels fear and resignation. it’s that moment when zemo starts the lists of trigger words, and he knows what’s happening, and he rips apart his cell trying to stop it from happening. all he wants is to be left alone. and maybe, to forget.

“i still did it,” to me, is the revelation of the horror he’s lived through, and the horror that continues to be his life. he wants it to stop. his worst nightmare comes true: he’s found, he’s unmade, he’s forced to be the killer he tries desperately not to be, and he’s left with the pieces.

for a film that’s all about choice and consequence, about responsibility and accountability, bucky stands as the character who serves as the consequence of other people’s culpability. in many ways, he’s tony’s opposite: he bears guilt for things he never chose to do, while tony pushes the guilt for his myriad sins onto everyone around him, never taking responsibility for the havoc he creates.

and the guilt and horror is too much. bucky argues at the end, as he’s going back into cryofreeze, that this is so he won’t be used as a weapon. I think this is true, but also there’s the hidden motivation: that bucky doesn’t really want to BE anymore. he wants to turn off his consciousness and fall asleep and never wake up until the danger isn’t there anymore.

because you have to think of bucky in romania, waking up in that sad apartment, and thinking, “is this it? is this the day they find me?”

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*This person perfectly lays out why I am and remain Team Cap. Its not because I dislike Tony but because Team Tony had some serous flaws in their reasoning and actions.

narniangirl1994

Powerful Moments in Civil War

After seeing Civil War, I’d like to discuss what I believe were some of the most powerful and pivotal moments in the movie. Don’t read this if you haven’t seen the movie yet:

Keep reading

*Of note in this particular post, is a reference to what Sam must have been feeling, watching WarMachine fall out of the sky, and being unable to stop it.

  • Poor  Sam, having to deal with seeing another   teammate fall out of the sky that he couldn’t save. The fact that he then    asked about Rhodey, even when imprisoned by Tony’s side of the fight. And     the way Tony (unfairly) blasted him for what happened to Rhodey, even     though it wasn’t Sam’s fault

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trashmouse

Civil War Thoughts: On Steve

So, it’s been taking me a while to get my last thoughts out, and I might do a few more smaller ones before I get to my Steve/Bucky thoughts, but in the meantime, here are my broader thoughts on Steve and his role in Civil War.  Obviously, this will be chock full of spoilers.

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kristhelkat

Crossbones, Steve and the“Your Bucky” scene

So, after watching the scene between Crossbones and Steve for the second time, I’ve been thinking about what he said to taunt Steve during their fight. And I thought of something really upsetting, and I don’t want to suffer by myself so I’m telling you right now.

Some spoilers below the cut. All right? Here we go.

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your-pal-your-buddy-your-bucky
Is it too early to start talking about mid credit Bucky and what it all means? Because, honestly, some people seem to be uncertain about his future, but I don’t think there’s any need to be.Bucky Barnes as the Winter Soldier is all chrome and black leather, a range of colours associated with weaponry, the bad guys. Not white. Never white. That is, until the scene where we leave him. SERIOUSLY, LOOK AT THE SYMBOLISM OF THIS OUTFIT HERE.White trousers, white shirt, someone remarked he’s got bare feet in the opening scene, if the camera had panned back a little on the end scene, I’m fairly certain he’d be barefoot here as well.. He’s in ALL WHITE, the colour of innocence and purity and in western religious circles a colour symbolising the washing away of one’s sins. Renewal. I don’t know what’s going on behind him, but it’s giving off a golden glow, I swear they couldn’t have made him look more like an ACTUAL SAINT if they tried. You think this is the end for him? White is for new beginnings, not endings. Watch this scene again, the white, the gold, the serene smile. This scene is the baptism of Bucky Barnes. The boy is getting REBORN.

Is all this deliberate? I think it is, consider the juxtaposition they’ve given us in the opening and closing scenes of this film. The beginning, pre title scene of a man, Bucky Barnes being awoken from the ice, dressed in black, cloaked in darkness. Not yet the soldier, just the man, being dragged into a place of darkness and screaming agony and forcibly turned into the Winter Soldier, against his will. The ending, the man who was the Winter Soldier, dressed in white, bathed in light. Not being dragged, but choosing to go back into that ice to become Bucky Barnes again. The scenes mirror each other in every way, not just in the motions, but the lighting, the costuming, the tone; darkness and light, black and white, piercing screams and hushed, peaceful tones, coercion and free will. I know it’s just a silly superhero movie, but this is beautiful stuff right here.

Look, okay, I see Bucky as the heart of this movie, Bucky’s my fave, so maybe I’m biased, but I can only see a new beginning here. But you know what, even if this WERE the end of his story, I’d be happy with this. I couldn’t have asked for a more respectful treatment of my baby. And I think he’s going to be just fine.

bucky barnesmarvel metacivil war spoilersmy baby
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http://giveusalol.tumblr.com/post/143535916488/gender-subversion-in-cacw
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*More about Steve’s trauma, keeping in mind that afte Peggy’s death, the only preson left alive who rmembers the original Steve Rogers, is Bucky.
steverogersorbust

you know. sometimes i think. in the face of tony’s obvious trauma and ptsd. in the face of the more obvious pain that bucky has suffered. we forget that steve’s motivation in the film isn’t just his tendency to hold stubbornly fast to his ideals, to do what he feels is right and damn the rest.

steve’s hurting too.

like. guys. we are so ready to give weight to tony’s emotional boiling over point at the end of the film, to say “this is why he tried to kill bucky, and it’s not right but it’s understandable.” we are so ready to acknowledge the fact that bucky was a victim and motivated to run by his fear of further persecution and hurt from nefarious forces. what about steve, though? when do we acknowledge that steve’s not just acting with righteous arrogance, but a deep anger, isolation, fear, loneliness, sadness, and hope?

steve died. like, his last memory before waking up seventy years in the future is a few days after watching his best friend fall from a train and he was unable to stop it he willingly flies a plane into the fucking Arctic, ostensibly to his death.

guys. guys. tony was fucked up for years because of untreated ptsd after falling from space and thinking he was dead. why is it so hard to remember that steve probably is fucked up, too?

this dude, he wakes up seventy years in the future and he has to make his way without really anyone or anything familiar, and the only person who is familiar is suffering from memory loss, and he’s now operating under the thumb of shadowy organization that he’s not 100 percent does good things and that continuously lies to him. there’s no war to fight, but that’s all this body is good for. it’s all he knows.

he doesn’t know what makes him happy. guys.

and so he goes through another trauma when he discovers this villain who is trying to kill him is in fact the dead best friend who—surprise!—was actually captured after falling and losing an arm andhis brains were scrambled to turn him into a murder assassin. we know for a fact steve feels tremendous guilt over this. but imagine beyond guilt, the sorrow, the nightmarish possibilities, that are turning over in steve’s head. the idea of what his friend suffered. remember when rhodey fell from the sky and tony blasted sam in the chest? imagine the anger in steve’s heart at the idea of what bucky’s suffered and the unwillingness to let that go unchecked and unsaved.

oh, plus. that shadowy organization he’s been fighting for? the people he’s been taking orders from? the top dog in the neat little hierarchy that’s arranged his world? yeah. hydra. everything steve has known turns upside down. he can’t trust anything. imagine the paranoia. the suspicion. imagine the fear that must take seed at that betrayal.

and then! of course, then he begins fighting these battles with the avengers where the collateral damage is on such a bigger scale than it was at war. where there are aliens. aliens, you guys. and he’s tasked with leading this motley crew of superheroes in a world he’s still getting used to and people die, lots of people die, and we know that even if it doesnt visibly affect him like it affects tony (who always seems shocked when he’s confronted with loss, because it’s presented to him on a personal, individual level) it does affect him. that steve feels the guilt of lives lost. imagine that burden. imagine the weight of the shield, the mask, the responsibility. imagine the loneliness. thefear.

so then. then. in the space of a few days. steve deals with more guilt from the deaths in lagos. he shoulders that burden. then he deals with the moral quandary of signing the accords. he wrestles with that decision. peggy dies. he grieves, oh goodness does he grieve. vienna fuckin blows up andthat elusive best friend is now the suspect. so steve is grieving, he is confused and conflicted, and now he feels doubly guilty—that’s the person he has been looking for, should he have already caught him? did he do it? he couldn’t have. does he bring him in? does he shoulder this responsibility too? what will they make him do when he catches up to bucky? what should he do? steve might act like he always knows what’s right, but a decision like this isn’t easy. it messes with a person. and when you’re dealing with all that mess in your head, sometimes you don’t think. sometimes…you act.

like when bucky is triggered, when steve stops a helicopter with his bare fucking hands, you can feel the desperation. that’s not ordinary heroics. that’s not steve just trying to stop bucky from escaping and possibly hurting others. it’s steve fighting for bucky. for this piece of his past. for the possibility of an end to loneliness. for the possibility of redemption for letting him fall.

and when they go on the run, when they know they have to stop the supersoldiers, when they clash with tony’s team, can you imagine steve’s sheer frustration that no one gets what is at stake? that no one is willing to listen? and yes, he didn’t even try—but why is that, you think? is it possibly because steve is used to institutions and those in power ignoring what he thinks is right and causing disaster anyway?

when steve says, “pal, so are we.” when steve acknowledges to natasha that he’s 90 not dead, when he openly references the fact that he and bucky are 100, can you imagine knowing that? adjusting to that? being 20-something in body and memory but 100 in actuality? living in a body that people perceive as a weapon so strongly that you’ve become a weapon when you are still longing to rediscover the man you were? steve’s not just cap. steve’s steve, and he doesn’t know what makes him happy you guys. he’s a guy, he’s a human, and he’s dealing with A Lot.

i get that he makes some bad calls in the movie. so does tony. my beef is that while tony’s decisions are often supported by his very obvious trauma and emotional burden, we rarely seem to give enough weight to the very real and very similar turmoil that is going on inside of steve.

when tony is fighting him in siberia. when steve says, “he’s my friend,” so simply, so sadly, without any righteousness, just clean tired truth, that’s steve as steve. when he hid the truth from tony, that’s steve as steve. when he drops the shield, that’s steve reclaiming himself as steve. we expect cap all the time, because often, steve is cap. it’s easy to see him as the moral police that way, if reductionist.

but we forget to see steve as steve. that he is a kid, in some ways. and a grieving, lost, lonely kid with a lot of anger, sadness, confusion, and power boiling under the placid-seeming surface.

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scififreak35

Steve and the Sokovia Accords

I keep seeing a lot of posts about how Steve was in the wrong in CACW because while Tony had a plan, Steve didn’t offer any alternative to it, he was just like NOPE. The thing is though, something that immediately struck me when I watched the movie was the timing of everything. Ross and Tony bring Steve and the others the Accords THREE DAYS before they are to be signed. Those Accords were not drafted, approved and supported by 117 countries in a week. This was 100% intentional. This is also very, very common in American politics. When politicians want to pass a bill they don’t want people to look at closely, they schedule votes at weird times or when a large # of people are away from the Hill (Capital Hill). So you get these 11th hour bills that are hundreds of pages long that no one has had a chance to read, ask questions about, or negotiate on about changes. These bills are stuffed with completely unrelated stuff that gets passed as well because the whole thing has to be signed off on/approved. It’s called “pork barreling.” Those are the questions Steve tries to bring up to the group. When he’s like ‘what happens when…?’ And Tony brushes aside his concerns like ‘oh, I’m sure we’ll get to make changes later when everything dies down.’ But Steve is like what are we agreeing to NOW though? And practically as soon as they are given the “generous” 3 day warning, Peggy dies. Steve flies off to London and everything goes to hell. What time is there to propose or discuss an alternative plan??

The timing was 100% intentional to make sure the Avengers would be subject to the Accords as written–no matter what was lurking on the bottom of page 440 in fine print. Steve is 100% right to be suspicious. This is one of the dirty tricks of American politics that Steve would be totally aware of. And sure, maybe there’s a chance that everything was above board, reasonable, and so on, but you would NEVER sign a thing like that w/o actually checking/reading it. that would be foolish. I mean, did we forget that Project Insight was authorized and approved by The World Council? I guarantee you that Steve hasn’t. I absolutely believe that Steve would have been willing to talk everything out, negotiate, listen to everyone’s pov, and really consider everything carefully…but there’s no time given to do that. It’s all last minute, non-negotiable, and shady. Steve is a master tactician, natural leader, and a reasonable, thoughtful person who is a Big Picture thinker. It’s weird that people just assume he rejects the Accords because he’s being childish or something. That’s not Steve Rogers at all.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Fandom Misogyny and Racism II

 

*This post from neogenesis is the beginning of the thread in my last post on misogyny and racism in fandom and gives an example of the intersection of race and misogyny (misogynoir) in fandom.This is about the kind of toxicity present in all of fandom culture. (I have this person’s permission to publish this here:)

neogenesis85:

I’ve been thinking about how toxic fandom can be.

I could write a dissertation on the various ways fan culture breeds the worst of the worst, but this particular rant is about the race thing. Because Tumblr culture thinks it’s so progressive and above other places like Twitter and Reddit and, idk, Yahoo comment sections when it comes to race. But actually it’s not any better. It just covers the bigotry up with flowery words andfeminism!!! (yeah I’m still mad at how much this site can shit on female characters while praising white peen, all the while claiming they want better for women)

This has been on my mind for awhile, even more since I’ve totally fallen in love with The Flash and watched the fallout that happened the second that Candice Patton was cast to play Iris West.

And I started to really wonder why folks went off the rails. Why people latched on to Caitlin like a life line and insisted that she should be Barry’s love interest, even before the show aired. And once it did, posts in the Iris tag ran the gauntlet of excuses of why she wasn’t a well written character to how she should either be killed off or reduced to something other than a main.

The writers of the show have pretty much made her perfect. Happy, loved, a great friend. Pretty much always has a smile on her face. College student, working part-time to cover expenses at a coffee shop. Loves her some Barry. Loves her some Joe. Even loves her some Eddie once she realizes that her whole world wasn’t just her bff, school and her dad. Even still, she starts a freaking fanblog about that super fast dude that goes around saving people because she knows Barry and wants to help him find the truth/closure about his mom’s death. She literally hasn’t done anything to anyone to be dragged across the coals the way she has been. In fact, everyone else has been doing a disservice to her by being big fat liars about things that she should really know about. Which, somehow, people turned this into being her flaw.

(If you can’t tell, I’m a stan for Iris. I will defend her to the death. Carefree blk girl that has so many people in her corner. This is SO FUCKING RARE! I have NEVER seen this before on tv)

Then that wonder turned into an ‘oh yeah, fandom is racist as hell but they don’t want to admit it.’

Because I’ve seen various versions of CW’s Iris West in other shows, with almost the same personality and charisma and having everyone be in love with her cause she’s just so awesome… and fandom tripped over themselves to stan the hell out of them.

But all those characters where white.

And this is the problem. The second a characters can no longer jokingly be called snowbunny, too much of fandom can no longer relate to them.

That’s when those tired ass tropes come out:

  • The bad actress thing
  • The no chemistry thing
  • The she’s better off without a love interest thing
  • which feeds into The Independent, don’t need a man thing
  • The she’s too aggressive thing
  • The she’s too passive thing
  • The they’re like brother and sister, so it’s incest thing
  • The she’s an action girl, therefore why are you trying to bring in a usually white male love interest to ruin it (even though that male character will have more fans than the said female character)
  • The but she’s also a damsel in distress, why can’t she just save herself and carry that load and just be a general mule that cries I Don’t Need a Hero Baby and if you help me in any way it’s just gonna invalidate my Strong Independence thing
  • The she’s too perfect thing (a.k.a the Mary Sue Syndrome)
  • The she’s not perfect enough (a.k.a. the I don’t understand that characters can be flawed and I can still love them when they identify as a woman… But hey, let me flood your dashboard with Loki and Sherlock and Bucky Barnes, and Sam and freaking Dean Winchester b/c tragic male characters are just the fucking best or something… idk, I seriously don’t care anymore)
  • The why can’t we have more strong male/female FRIENDSHIPSaremagic!!!!!11!, they don’t have to become romantic thing
  • The I just don’t like her thing, even though I can’t articulate why I actually don’t like her. And if pressed for it an explanation, I’ll just throw out the most superficial reasons why she’s just the worst thing ever to hide my internalized misogyny and racism while tagging that shit but please don’t call me out on it because then you’re just being a bully and I was only stating my opinion even though nobody fucking asked for it and gosh can’t I just live?First Amendment!!!! I’ve sent myself gotten anon death threats okay, this is why we can’t have nice things
  • The she didn’t look like that in the original source material thing. Why is everything become so PC? Those black/brown people are really getting out of hand with their want for representation. Why can’t they relate to a character if they don’t actually look like them? It shouldn’t be that hard. Who care’s if they didn’t cast Katnis or Khan or The Exodus right? They’re just characters. And their race shouldn’t play into how much you identify with them. But holly shit, Idris played a Viking god??!? Annie isn’t a pale, freckled faced red head. That’s just taking things too damn far. Let me shove the importance of European beauty standards down your throat some more, because obviously there aren’t enough of us in all your media.

Yo, this shit I just typed… this shit that I’ve seen in literally any fandom that has characters that weren’t melanin challenged… IT’S GOTTEN OLD

And the clap back that’s been happening… those people like me who are done with everyone thinking white is the status quo… it is not about shipping or us being sjw. 

It’s about us being so fucking tired of defending characters that look like us, that speak like us, that go through the same bullshit like us, but are either ignored or vilified by fandom for reason that aren’t canon just because said fandom doesn’t want to admit it’s problematic as hell.

It’s about me being too old and too done with fandom pissing on my head and claiming it’s just rain… It’s about the fact that there is no apparent safe place for fans of color because #fandom is for white women.

This should no longer be a thing. There have been more articulate and sober folks saying this since AOL free trial disks were all the rage (trust, I was there) BUT IT’S STILL HAPPENING

This is why folks like me snark, and curse, and reply to your ‘am I the only one that doesn’t/cant’s stand [insert whatever non-white person of the week’s name here] lol?’ posts with side-eye gifs and general disdain. This is why we don’t care for your criticisms that divorce race from the narrative. This is why we have to have racebending prompts and create new tags just so that we can stan for those characters that apparently the world hates. And why we don’t give a flying fuck about your ‘can’t we all just get along? Solidarity guys. Listen to the only MLK quote I know’ posts when you aren’t trying to police the people that are causing the actual problem, but trying to guilt us into thinking you’re the victim. This is why we create our own message boards and forums and no you aren’t invited. This is why we don’t care to educate you. This is why your passive attitude towards the bs we have to go through as fans of color is worst then the actual assholes that perpetuate it.

THIS IS WHY TUMBLR AIN’T SHIT

But, despite all of this, I like it here. Sure, the staff doesn’t have their priorities straight and apparently will protect the identities of KKK members before they’ll support black history month, but it’s free and the xkit guy works miracles.

But most importantly, I’ve met incredibly talented and smart individuals here. And I know it can be better.

So do better. That’s all I’m asking. Check yourself before you start applying higher standards to characters of color and judging them in ways you don’t to anyone else.

And FOR THE LOVE OF ALL THINGS UNIVERSAL, LISTEN TO US WHEN WE TELL YOU YOUR LANGUAGE IS RACIST!!!!! I DON’T CARE WHAT YOUR INTENTION WAS. I DON’T CARE IF YOU AREN’T LIKE THOSE FIGURATIVE ‘OTHER PEOPLE.’ YOU FUCKED UP. PUT ON YOUR ADULT PANTS AND OWN UP TO IT. LEARN FROM IT. AND DO BETTER NEXT TIME. It’s really that easy.

*This rant has been brought to you in part by too much caps lock, the Charles Shaw Trader Joes chardonnay blend, that tequila and Waffle House I had for breakfast, and years of frustration defending characters like Iris West | Bonnie Bennett | Abby Mills | Jenny Mills | T-Dog | Mako Mori | Breaden | Guinevere | Glenn |  Olivia Pop | Joan Watson | Roxy & Fred Weasley |  Uhura | Martha Jones | Lana Lang | Michonne | Nick Fury|  Dualla ‘Dee’ | Rosita | Tyler Lockwood | Sharon/#8/Boomer | Teyla | Regina Mills | Stacker Pentecost | Lacy Porter | Tara Thorton | Shirley Donavan | Marcel Gerard | Naevia | Melinda May | Michaela Pratt | Sam Wilson | Tiana | Cassie Robinson | Tory Foster | Rhodey | Casca | Heimdall | Hogun | Aveline de Grandpre | Scott McCall | Mika | Sasha | Ororo | Literally all the non-white characters they had white folks playing them in  Game of Thrones | dot dot freaking dot I can go on forever with this list

neogenesis85

Thing is, I’m sure if you asked any of the white girls in these fandoms who bitch and moan about the women of color in the cast, they would tell you that they actually are proponents of diversity. I’m sure they would search back to find a character of color in a previous fandom they didn’t hate (a character that was inevitably supporting, in the background, and not threatening to their understanding of the social order, definitely not of more importance than their white self-inserts).

Diversity to white fangirls has always been fine in theory, because diversity meant to them a man of color or two (usually black) to add to the number of men who idolized the sole woman (always white) in the cast. But this new specific brand of diversity doesn’t automatically place white girls on a pedestal. It doesn’t automatically treat white girls as the only obvious, worthy partner. Every single argument made against a woman of color’s position in the narrative stems from the disruption of this pattern.

White fangirls aren’t used to being placed off center and they react the way you would expect of the entitled and self-absorbed. And when a group of people who are used to casting themselves as the ultimate victims are actually just your typical ugly aggressors you get, well, what the OP described.

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*This is another analysis of misogynoir from another two perspectives:

portraitrevealed:

 

theprettyfeminist:

They can think of themselves as being for diversity because it literally does not compute that expecting Black women to be on the sidelines is being anti-inclusive. They still see Black women (and men – Finn from Star Wars gets it bad, too) as The Other, always, even if they won’t admit it. The Other can exist, but she can’t possibly be the center of attention, because The Other isn’t a “regular” person.

They will always see a white person as the “obvious” match for the hero, even if they’re only seen briefly (or not at all) compared to the Black character. The Walking Dead fandom is a textbook example: Michonne showed up shortly after Rick’s wife died, and the show started building their relationship from go. When they started trusting each other, the soundtrack played a romantic piano score over their scenes. Michonne started to fill a void for Rick and his kids, and they did the same for her. They started to become a family – Rick couldn’t do it without her, and he straight up told her that.

Then the show introduces white, blonde Jessie and they’re all like “finally, a love interest for Rick!” I don’t even think most were conscious of it, it just never occurred to them that a love story had been building between Michonne and Rick all along. And even when Richonne did get together in canon, fans seriously and openly expected that any random white woman they’d see in an episode might get together with Rick. Even if they were never in the same room together. They even wanted him with Maggie, which was a double-whammy, because Maggie is married to Glenn, who is Korean-American. They couldn’t keep their minds from seeing romance between Rick and Anyone But Michonne.

It’s the same in every fandom with a Black character who is allowed to be loved. It’s dehumanization, and THAT is toxic.

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*The following series of posts and articles are further examples of fandom racism, and links, and will be presented without my usual long commentary:
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https://www.buzzfeed.com/tracianne/racism-in-fandom-pairing-preferences-26cv2

https://cassandrashipsit.tumblr.com/Racism101

Fandom. you’ve got a huge race problem — An Introduction Post

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I literally just saw a post where the OP said that Iris West and Abbie Mills are mediocre characters and the only reason why they’re so popular is because they’re black…

DO YOU SEE WHAT I’M TALKING ABOUT? People love to deny the existence of fandom racism, but then shit like this pops up. The op was actually pissed that Iris West and Abbie Mills had fans. Because in their mind, the only reason why a black female character would have any fans is because of black privilege *severe eye roll*

Ugh, it must be so hard being a white fangirl these days.

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allerasphinx answered:

I find it laughable that people insist on interpreting Finn’s desire to hold Rey’s hand as subconsciously misogynistic. And if I weren’t concerned about the real world implications of that, I’d roll my eyes and keep it moving.

However, I can’t react flippantly because it disturbs me that fans are purposely ignoring the obvious and reading Finn’s actions as ambivalently reinforcing gender roles simply because he tried to help Rey. It disturbs me, because although these characters are fictional, the way we react to them mirrors the way we react to people in real life.

I’ve read a number of articles about hypermasculinity over the years, especially in relation to black men. Men in general are hypermasculinised in society, but the concept is particularly applied to black men because of how black people are dehumanised. We as a society see black people’s physical strength, aggression and sexuality as even more heightened, not because these things are highly concentrated in black bodies, but because of stereotypes [stemming from hundreds of years of inequality].

These stereotypes don’t begin and end with the degradation of black men because black women are also masculinised. White women were (and still are) seen as the embodiment of femininity. Femininity was associated with delicateness, pureness, and vulnerability, thusly black women were defeminised in order to justify the harsh treatment and physical and sexual abuse they endured during slavery. [Note, this is part of the reason why the “strong black woman who don’t need a man” caricature–amongst other things–exists today.]

Essentially, hypermasculinity serves to elevate masculinity as superior, but also serves to distance men from having emotional responses gendered as feminine. Black women and men are primarily affected by this characteristic. And since that is the case, there are insidious and subconscious ideas that disallow black people from being viewed as needing care and emotional reassurance. We’re not allowed to be afraid and we’re certainly not allowed to be weak.

I see this underlying insidiousness in the way people talk about Finn’s cowardliness and supposed emasculation in the narrative. I see this in the way that people infantalise Finn (because a grown black man has no business being sensitive). I see this in the way that people can’t seem to accept that Finn grabbed Rey’s hand in part because he was scared.

Now, I don’t know if it’s the film’s fault for not delving enough into his backstory, but Finn’s clearly an empath; he’s a character who cares about people to the point where he’s reprimanded for it. He witnesses Poe’s torture and instead of finding another means of escape, he rescues Poe because his life is in danger too. When he lands on Jakku, he sees people attacking someone who’s outnumbered (outplanned) and he wants to help her, but then realises that she can handle herself. He runs from her when she pursues him, but then they’re attacked by The Order.

Despite Rey misinterpreting his actions, despite his fear of his captors, he doesn’t leave her behind because he knows what The Order is capable of. [There are documented stories about how horrific it is to be indoctrinated as a child soldier. Children are forced to kill in order to desensitise them. They have to kill their friends, and sometimes their family members if they won’t obey (or they have their loved ones lives threatened). It takes a lot of bravery and strength to run away from that environment, and people absolutely have to go into hiding to avoid recapture.]

Finn wanting to protect someone else from this fate is completely understandable. Finn wanting to run and hide is completely understandable. He doesn’t try to protect Rey because of some misplaced notion of chivalry toward women, he does it because that’s how he reacts to fear. He grabs Rey’s hand because they’re both running from something that makes them afraid. He grabs Rey’s hand because he assumes that if he’s terrified, she must be too.  He recognises that in that moment, Rey’s just as vulnerable as he is; this is the same reason why he rescues Poe. He sees people in danger and genuinely wants to help them.

This acknowledgement of Finn and Rey’s mutual vulnerability is solidified by the fact that Rey softens when Finn asks if she’s okay. She later takes his hand because she realises (as the audience should) that Finn doesn’t have ulterior motives–that even though he just met her, he already cares about her because it’s in his nature. This is one rare instance where a narrative presents a scene as it’s meant to be interpreted and does it in such a deliberate way that it annoys me (on so many levels) that people don’t get it.

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*Reposting these links because the topic needs repeating:

https://fozmeadows.wordpress.com/2016/09/07/the-plausible-diversity-of-apples/

https://fozmeadows.wordpress.com/2016/09/11/how-to-suppress-female-characters/

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Fandom Misogyny and Racism 

Okay, this is going to be a long discussion about the intersection of misogyny and race in fandom, followed by other people’s rants about White fandom “acting a fool”. I stumbled across a Tumblr blog where the focus was entirely on misogyny in fandom. There wasn’t a lot of interesectionality in it, although it touched on the topic of racism from time to time. Most of the focus on these topics has been about its manifestation in  fanfiction. I’m not really heavily involved in that part of fandom, but I pay attention and have noticed  it everywhere else, in meta analysis, critiques of movies that haven’t been released, Twitter, in my various news-feeds, and on other websites.

What is happening in fandom is happening throughout all types of fandom, (even in books). The more PoC make a name for ourselves in media where we had been systematically denied, the louder and more strident becomes the backslash, from White people who feel we’re encroaching on something that’s theirs, making too many demands, forcing diversity, or critiquing how they perform fandom.

Calling out racism seems to galvanize those individuals who ,while reluctant to move or complain about anything else in the world, will respond to protect their bottom line. That bottom line seems to be feeling good about themselves as people, while trying to justify their complete inactivity on these issues. We’re not talking about the hardcore bigots. (Those people can’t hear anything through the swarm of wasps that live in their heads.) We’re talking about your average, everyday fan, the kind who thinks they’re liberal, progressive, good-hearted people who think they bear no one any malice because they haven’t burned any crosses on anyone’s lawn. These are the kind of people who are perfectly willing to sit and watch injustice and unfairness being done to others, and do and say nothing.  I call such people ” The Peanut Gallery”. The only time they will speak up,when they feel a  need to justify their inactivity, because feeling good about themselves  is their primary goal, not speaking out against unfairness.

There is a certain type of person who, once they find a comfortable spot on the road of life, will simply sit there and do absolutely nothing. They don’t speak out, they don’t help the ones who trip and fall in front of them, they won’t move from their comfortable spot because “they got theirs”. That’s the closest metaphor I have to the racist pushback I’ve been seeing in fandom.  There are White women who  are complicit in upholding the status quo for a variety of reasons. Most of them view themselves as not participating in racist behavior because they have been victims of sexism. They fight to hold on to their sense of being feminsit and progressive, often throwing PoC, the differently abled, ,and transgender men and women under the bus to do so. They claim to support women, but not all women get their support, especially if she interferes with whatever they want for  their favorite White characters.

It’s not just angry White men, whining about women, or racebending, in movies. There’s a significant contingent of white women engaging in racism and misogyny, mostly through their analysis and fictioning of shows and movies, and through  their erasure of certain characters. In its most toxic form its “misogynoir”, the vilification of black women, which is unique and different from the treatment of men of color, and white women in the narrative. Its rare but not unheard of for White women to engage in racist Twitter  and Tumblr rants, and harassment as well, when they feel their sense of ” being good people” has been attacked.

Many of these women consider themselves to be progressive and liberal. In all senses they consider themselves to be good people, and craft elaborately baroque reasons for why certain WoC within the narrative are villains, or should be disregarded. (This is often  but not necessarily related to “shipping”.) In the words of finnorgana and artepen, these people are anything but progressive. They want to be seen as progressive, hence the elaborate, occasionally completely non-sensical reasons they create, for their dislike of certain characters. What it actually  is, is  these characters challenge their notions of the roles  PoC, roles that have been informed by decades of Hollywood racism. Rather than confront this thinking head on, because to do so might admit they have racist ideas, they have to justify their dislike for a black hero, or black love interest and will go so far as to make up, out of whole cloth, moments in movies which never occurred, or concoct wild interpretations of the canon narrative.

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*The Get Down, Black Panther, and Luke Cage

The Get Down is a show on Netflix, chronicling the lifestyles of some young  and pretty twenty something black people in seventies NY, around the popularity of disco, and the start of rap music. It has some beautiful gender representation and even a little gay/queer representation, as well. But since it’s a mostly black cast, that doesn’t prominently feature a white narrative,(Luke Cage), it is being ignored by the same people, who claim to care so much about representation of women and gays. They can make the argument that white women’s representation is good for ALL women, but can’t seem to make that same leap when it comes to Black women. The message one derives from that is WoC can’t represent ALL women. The same people telling black gay people to wait their turn when the representation is white,(Agent Carter) seem uninterested  in representation when it’s PoC.

In other words, these “good, progressive” people, who are deeply concerned with representation as long as all the characters are white, aren’t watching The Get Down, because it’s too Black. Rather than face that racist idea, they craft elaborate reasons for why it’s a bad show, while uplifting Stranger Things, which is something more familiar, with its 80s/Goonies pathos, and an all white cast. (There’s no female or queer representation  in Stranger Things.)

 
finnnorgana artepen

artepen:

what really kills me about the whole situation regarding the get down is that it’s the same annoying ass fake concerned white people who’s favorite pastime is harassing black and non black people of color to settle for fucking scraps on these terrible all white or predominantly white tv shows because it’ll either be better for white women or white queer representation, that are running up in my inbox telling me they’re not wasting their time on a show that’s a flop or they’re just flat-out ignoring it, like they didn’t read every black and nonblack person the same tired ass essay about waiting our turn because soon enough something for us is going to come and everyone will be happy and martin luther king jr’s dream about us all having sleepovers together is gonna come true!!!!! like it’s the same crusty ass white people who acted like they gave half a shit about diversity and actual positive representation that are completely ignoring the get down for the dumbest reasons, like the people who feel triggered by certain aspects of this show have an actual reason to not want to watch, like nobody’s gonna force you to watch a show that legitimately makes you uncomfortable but the people who just don’t fucking care??? the ones that are probably the same losers who tried to push black people into watching shit shows like agent carter or the 100 where we’d have to see ourselves being disrespected and ormurdered and violated on screen, y’all are trash

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Here, mouseavenger lays out the various forms that misogyny takes within the MCU fandoms. There are more examples than these, and it pairs with “misogynoir” in interesting ways. Since very few Black women have had any prominent roles in the MCU, it’s not entirely clear if that has had an effect on misogynoir. This is  just a description  of how White women are being treated by fandom , which is awful without adding any elements of race.
preach on it
mouseavenger

The Marvel fandom hates women.

  • They want a Black Widow movie..but will put down other women for the sake of keeping Nat high.
  • They want to Agent Carter renewed…but erase her from Steve’s life as if she never existed to him
  • They don’t want Bruce paired with Natasha…but also forget Betty Ross literally exists and nobody seems to even care for her because she would be “irrelevant”.
  • They want Daisy Johnson and Jessica Jones to live happy…but ship them with Grant Ward and Kilgrave
  • They want Steve and Bucky to be the first canonically gay MCU ship…but trash the hell out of Sharon Carter because she…”gets in the way of their white male gay ship.” (but they won’t hate Natatsha no?)
  • They want Marvel women to be more appreciated and loved, but will tear down others in the process and diminish them to nothing.

This fandom is so FULL of hypocrisy it’s embarrassing, we are NOT progressive, we do NOTpractice what we preach to others, we are full of misogynistic trash.

We don’t really care for Marvel women, it’s all just a joke to make us look better.

Maybe we don’t deserve a Black Widow movie or a Captain Marvel movie or Jessica Jones or Agent Carter- because all I see is endless mistreatment of women in the universe.

EDIT : I’ve had few replies saying that this is generalizing the entire fandom, I am well aware that this should not be a reflection of everybody, but as of late it HAS become more apparent, the fandom has become SO divisive since AOU, characters that shouldn’t be trashed are, ship wars are getting out of fucking control, and this fandom is about ready to finally crash and burn. And shit needs to be called out because now it is just NOT okay. I’m also aware that part of this is on Marvel for not treating the female characters with proper respect, I will not deny that- but this post is calling out the FANS who are further contributing to this problem.

There’s a difference between having legitimate criticisms over a character and just trashing a character because she’s just a bitch and needs to die for no good reason. We should not pretend women like Pepper Potts, and Peggy Carter don’t exists (there have been fics that have been said to erase these women from characters lives, something that is also not okay). How are we supporting women by shipping them with men who abuse them and rape them?

Those who are doing know who they are, and they should just stop because they’re not needed.

*The above, when coupled with race,  recreates the same situations in other fandoms, only with nasty racial overtones, the purpose of which is to  erase PoC from the narrative, restore the equilibrium of White fans who are more comfortable centering White people in the story, and lowkey express racial antagonism towards characters of color. Fans erasing the existence of canon love interests, who happen to be PoC, (Michonne, Iris West) in other shows and movies, so they can be shipped with other White characters. We even get an instance of a White woman being shipped with a character who emotionally raped her within the narrative, just so they can avoid shipping her with her Black co-star. (Rey and Finn in Star Wars)

Teen Wolf

Let’s use Teen Wolf is an example of all the worst kinds of racial behavior from the fans, and even the showrunners. Scott McCall , the teen wolf in question, is played by the actor Tyler Posey, who is Latino. He is unquestionably the star of the show. If you Google Teen Wolf’s cast, however, the first image shown is that of his White co-star, Stiles played by Dylan O’Brien, who is  not the star. So Scott’s  White sidekick is privileged over the MoC, who is the star of the show, and who the show is actually about.

Whitewashing: Over the five years of the show, it has been slowly whitewashed. What started as a diverse cast  has slowly been replaced by more and more White actors in its lineup.

Erasure of gay characters: There was a canon gay character (Danny) in the first three years of the show, which the fans ignored. The same fans crying about not having gay relationships in shows, refused to ship him with any of the other characters on the show, even though he had a canon relationship with another character on the show,Ethan. Danny, played by Keahu Kahuanui, is a MoC.

Erasure of women: The two characters most likely to be shipped together would be Scott and Stiles (Sciles), who are best friends on the show, and who have been shown being loving and supportive of each other, but the paring that receives the most fanfiction is Stiles and Derek (Sterek), with fans refusing to ship Stiles with a Latino actor, in favor of shipping him with a character who actively hates him, and whom Stiles canonically fears. Fans erase the existence of Stiles’ canon love interest, Malia, and Derek’s canon love interest, a Black woman named Braeden.

There is a canon gay character in the narrative right now, Mason Hewitt. But he’s a Black man, who will be ignored by the same fans agitating about how there’s no gay representation in media.

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Vilifying PoC: These fans also craft elaborate reasons for why Black co-stars are worthless or evil, (Braeden, Finn, Sam Wilson, Nick Fury, Michonne)  and hence not good enough for their White faves. They will erase and ignore canon narrative to get these wild interpretations, or just make them up, as if the rest of us don’t have eyeballs, and can’t see that they are lying. And contrary to popular opinion, the main culprits of these types of erasure and vilification are White and female.

Here’s a  good summation of this from theprettyfeminist:

reblogged

phoenix-ace asked:

Hey the majority of people hating Iris were always white women, even before the show aired. I agree with your post and it’s very well written but I wanted to send this correction because white fandom pretty much blamed their b.s. on phantom white guys so that white women didn’t have to own up.

theprettyfeminist answered:

TOTALLY. It’s so weird being on Tumblr and hearing white women constantly talking about feminism and protecting female characters, but the minute that woman is black or non-white, the feminist solidarity completely breaks down. And yes, I’ve definitely noticed white fansgirls blaming most of the fandom racism on white men. White men are definitely a huge problem and they never skip an opportunity to hate on a black woman, but they aren’t the only ones. White women have been the main culprits when it comes to the hate that black female characters get. Especially considering most of the hate is generated from shipping wars. Straight white men usually don’t care about the shipper nonsense. It’s usually white women.

Many of them can’t identify with a woman of color, so their ability to self-insert themselves into the narrative is taken away. But you know what? Women of color have been rooting for and identifying with white female characters for decades. We’ve always defended them and showered them with affection. From Buffy to Xena to Katniss to Hermione Granger. We’re always supportive. But the minute black women finally start getting some decent representation, white women magically come up with an excuse to dislike them. And don’t even get me started on the white girls who argue “I’m not racist because I like this other black character.” Usually that “other black character” is a side character who fits into a comfortable stereotype that validates the viewer’s preexisting world view. Characters like Iris West, Lacey Porter and Tulip O’Hare challenge their world view. These girls are not stereotypes. They’re not side characters. They’re not sexless automatons. They’re fully realized women who have relationships, goals and flaws. And more importantly, the hot male lead views them as viable romantic partners.

A lot of white women can’t handle that.

*And then there’s the response to the response. Fans of color calling out people for being racist and sexist, towards their favorite characters, get called toxic by people who are unused to having their motives questioned. As more PoC enter fandom (and even form our own fandoms based around characters of color) we  are encountering racism that had remained unchecked.

Many of us can already see this happening in the Luke Cage and Black Panther fandoms, with White fans trying to re-write potential narratives to center themselves, their interests, and their White faves. They want to take these stories and make them comfortable for their sensibilities, rather than try to identify with the characters as they are. They are so used to PoC not being the center of their own narratives, that they do what Hollywood has always classically done, which is marginalize PoC in their own stories.

Black fans keep having to explain that it is Luke Cage’s story and Jessica Jones doesn’t need to be in this one. She has her own show. It is Black Panther’s story and none of their White faves have any place in it. It is not necessary for Black Widow, Bucky Barnes, or Steve Rogers to be in Black Panther’s movie. If Thor, Iron Man, and Captain America (outside of Civil War) are allowed to have their own stories told about them, without the aid of other members of the MCU, then Luke and T’Challa should be granted the same privilege.

reverseracismtheprettyfeminist

theprettyfeminist:

There’s a particularly disturbing narrative that has been rearing its ugly head in Tumblr fandom discourse over the past year or so. Whenever a fandom that largely consists of people of color who are passionate about defending their favorite character from racism, white fans go out of their way to paint that fandom as “toxic” or “unfriendly.” A few examples:

  • The Westallen fandom – has been defending Iris West and Candice Patton for the past 3 years from racist and sexist attacks from angry white fanboys who are angry that a black actress is portraying the iconic comic book character, and from entitled white fangirls who are secretly offended by the idea that the good-looking white male hero would consider a black woman the love of his life. Candice Patton has been called the n-word, has been accused of sleeping with the producers to get the role of Iris West, has had her face photoshopped onto pornographic images, accused of bullying her co-starts, called an affirmative action hire,  has had her skin whitewashed in multiple photos to make her look white and completely sidelined and ignored by a large portion of the fandom, despite being the female lead. But whenever Westallen fans try to call people out on their racist behavior, they’re labelled bullies and are seen as “toxic.”
  • The Bamon fandom – has spent years defending Bonnie Bennett from racist attacks from Delena shippers who saw Bonnie as a threat to their ship from episode one. Again, whenever Bamon shippers try to address the racism that their favorite character has received, Delena fans call them angry and argue that their ship is invalid because the only people who ship it are angry black women – an argument that has been used against the Westallen fandom as well.
  • The Richonne fandom – constantly defending Michonne from racist white men who see Michonne as unattractive and white faux feminists who argue that Michonne is a “strong black woman” who should remain single. But again, whenever Richonne shippers try to fight back against these racist arguments, people label them as angry and rude.

This is literally a classic case of “being labelled a racist is worse than actual racism.” These people are more enraged by the concerns of fans of color than the actual racist treatment they’ve received. It’s like watching a Fox News anchor try to argue that Black Lives Matter is just as bad as the KKK. Because to them, any time a person of color speaks out against racism, it’s seen as hate speech. It’s sad to see this kind of argument pop up on Tumblr. Especially when the people here love to pride themselves on being progressive.

I wrote this after seeing a post about how “toxic” a particular fandom of color was, but all the examples they used were of fans tweeting the actors about their concerns about how people of color were being treated on the show. But in the eyes of the OP, those tweets were somehow on the same level as being called the n-word and having a black actor’s face photoshopped in the middle of a lynching.

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Then there’s the sloppy thinking and pseudo-intellectualism of people trying to justify all of the above:

stitchmediamix stitchomancy

stitchomancy:

It makes me seethe how fandom likes to wrap their dislike and distrust of people of color up in pseudo-intellectual dribble that’s supposed to read like a cohesive and academic film analysis.

Hello!

Your use of coded academic language to basically state that you don’t trust men of color near your precious white superhero booties is played out and we can see you for what you are. If you can apply reason and logic to things like “parent assassination would keep superhero from joining the group that killed them” but not “black man would not join neo-nazi hate group because of his race but also the fact that the character isn’t like that”, there’s something wrong with you.

Full stop.

Just like there’s something wrong with everyone that attacks the actions and motivations of men of color in the MCU (because so far, there aren’t any WOC as far as I can tell in the MCU Proper) when they wouldn’t (and don’t) dare to do the same with the white heroes, villains, and sidecharacters in the series.

There’s something wrong with people who write fics, headcanons, and meta revolving around how shitty Rhodey is to Tony. How shitty a friend he is. How abusive he is. How he is less important to the narrative that Tony’s got than Bruce Banner of all the freaking people.

There’s something wrong with how there are only mere handfuls of fic that cast MCU Nick Fury as someone that isn’t a manipulative, scary, stereotype of a villain.

And there’s definitely something wrong with people trying to pretend that they are ~serious critics~ as they try to theorize that Sam Wilson could be a secret Hydra agent based on the fact that the directors/writers of Cap 2 didn’t want to have this movie feel like a multi-series comic crossover by not having Tony appear to snark where no Stark-snark was needed.

Go read a book damnit.

Maybe an actual comic book about these said MOC in comics or a book about race in film not written by a white person because this whole thing about “coded/hidden racist language presented as unbiased headcanon/exploration esp when slash ships are involved” is bullshit and people will come for you to make sure you know how wrong you are.

*And finally, on fans who are against Social Justice:

*Here’s Chescaleigh weighing on the topic of anti- SJWs, when asked, by a white fan, that such people should be shown a certain level of empathy, and that both sides need to calm down and listen to each other. The kind of people Chescaleigh is talking about, are not the kind of people who can ever be reached by showing compassion, or  dispassionately explaining things to them, nor are they the kind of people I’m trying to reach. Anti-SJWs are people who make no secret of the fact that they are against “Social Justice”, and seem quite loud and proud of it.

The people who can be reached are the ones who are  asking questions because they’re at least capable of hearing an answer. Anti-SJWs can’t hear anything outside of the angry buzzing in their heads. They don’t want answers. The want to make assertions. Basically the kind of fans who are sending vicious emails (to Zendaya), splicing black celebrities  into pornographic images (Candice Patton/Leslie Jones) and then sending it to them, making rape threats, and angry videos about Anita Sarkeesian, are not the kind of people I’m talking to. 

For the record, I don’t actually consider such people to be fans. A fan is someone who loves something and wants to share that love with other people. They want to increase the fandom for the things they love. I know such people like certain books, movies and television shows, but when they do things  like harass the stars of the show, and other fans , I have no idea how to classify such people, except to say they’re not fans.

Her response is:

Source:

NoDAPL On Tumblr

 

So, I’ve been going through my dashboard getting rid of all the Hannigram blogs I keep subscribing to,  and adding more relevant stuff. I came acros tihs one blogger who posts a lot of wonderfully up-to-date news on Indigenous Peoples Affairs. 

Ya’ know, no wonder white men are so mad lately! I mean everybody just acting a fool, what with white women disregarding their orders, black people talkin’ back to them, Hispanic people are walking around not speaking properly, even Asians are acting all uppity and stuff, and they can’t be the heroes in movies anymore, (unless they’re by Marvel), and now them Native hooligans are being mad at stuff that happened hundreds of years ago. I know being a white man right now must be incredibly hard. 

Actually that so many Native Americans are out there doing the  things I cannot do, just made my heart glad. They have always brought the fire and they have my full support. The least I can do is signal boost and let others no whats happening. If you haven’t been keeping up on exactly what’s happening and why there’s this protest (and I don’t blame you because the mainstream media isn’t being very forthcoming), I’ve provided some news links at the bottom.

Not only that but BLM has thrown its full support behind their cause as well.

asmcosplay thecuriousviolet

serre-la-lumiere:

@ white people who think wearing eagle feather headdresses is just a costume and doesn’t offend natives, I was at a powwow yesterday and one of the dancer’s who was a war veteran accidentally dropped an eagle feather while dancing and we had to stop the entire powwow, the head man and some other elders had to stop and pray over the feather before picking it up. The guy who dropped the father gave a speech, while almost in tears, about how sorry he was to have dropped the feather and how it represented the choices he had to make in combat and the lives of people that were taken, and he ended up passing the feather on to another young dancer instead of keeping it because he felt so ashamed. This is how much eagle feathers mean to a lot of our nations, and that’s how important it is to native veterans. Wearing eagle feathers as a costume or without having to go through combat is disgusting and you ARE offending our traditions and values. Stop. You cannot understand the importance of our customs and you do not deserve to wear eagle feathers.

Source: lesoleilluittoujours
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asmcosplay thecuriousviolet

thecuriousviolet:

Natives who don’t stand up for their people and culture and say racist things about their own culture just to please the whites make me so sad

Like…no…we’ve been doing and trying that shit for hundreds of years and look where that got us. We have to stand up for ourselves or they are just going to wipe us all out. Have you seen the news lately? We are being murdered and raped on a daily basis. Our land is being poisoned. And the government won’t do a goddamn thing about it.

Calling other Natives a pussy for standing up for themselves is disgusting. It’s cool that you aren’t offended but siding with the whites and insulting and belittling your fellow Natives? I’m not okay with that. You’re no kin of mine.

nativehoe, I adore you. I think you’re pretty rad. And I think you’re totally in the right. Keep fighting the good fight, sister. Mvto!

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asmcosplay tatspiercings-blackrose
mamapluto:

dosedotcom:

an unprecedented moment in native american history happened this week

I don’t think non-Natives understand what a HUGE FREAKING DEAL this is. This is amazing. The show of solidarity is just…it’s amazing. Regardless of the end result, these gatherings will not be forgotten.

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STAND WITH STANDING ROCK – NO DAPL

http://www.vox.com/2016/9/9/12851168/dakota-access-pipeline-protest

#NoDAPL Protests Continue as the Movement Gains Nationwide Momentum

Why Black Lives Matter is fighting alongside Dakota Access Pipeline protesters

Tumblr Fandom Antics 1

 

Image result for fandom

 

*This is an perfect example of the kind of wtf*ery I was talking about when I mentioned, that unless PoC were useful to White fans, they get vilified in the fandom. Here, Nick Fury is unnecessarily demeaned by of all people, Bucky, when the two of them have never interacted in canon. It becomes obvious that Bucky’s sentiments in this ficlet are really just a stand-in for the  writer’s hatred of Nick Fury.  I am an accomplished enough reader to be able to tell the difference, between a writer’s opinions, and his character’s opinions, most of the time. 

Anonymous asked:

Imagine Bucky finding out Nick Fury is alive. Can he settle between being simultaneously offended and relieved?

imaginebucky answered:

“That motherfucker,” are the first words out of Bucky’s mouth when Natasha drops the file on the table. A black and white picture of Nick on a beach floats out of the thick folder; he’s in sunglasses, reading what looks like a case file from a lounge chair.

“How do you know Fury?” She asks. “I don’t think you would’ve found the time to, uh. Chat.”

“You mean while I was shooting at him?” Bucky says, lacing his tone with acidic sweetness. Steve, sitting on his other side, rubs a hand over his face and sighs. This, this is why they’d waited to bring it up. Piecing together Bucky’s last decades has been a daily trial, but they need it – and he wants it – to remember, so it can end.

Natasha opens her mouth, then shuts it, and opts to shrug. Bucky picks up the photo. The way Nick is sitting you can’t see any damage to his chest, and his leg isn’t splinted any more. He looks healthy. Younger. “I don’t know him,” Bucky mumbles. “We’ve never met.”

“He’s underground,” Steve offers. “Very underground.”

“Don’t matter.” Bucky flips the photo over and leans far back in his chair, letting his long hair fall into his eyes. “Tried to kill him. Thought I did. What kind of asshole just lets you think they’ve died, anyway?”

Steve catches Natasha’s eye and she scowls. “You get used to it.”

stitchmediamix:

Bucky has never been okay about what he did while under the control of Hydra and how easily he’s able to be controlled because of their mind-control and brainwashing stuff. That’s literally why he did what he did at the end of Civil War, because he regretted what he’d done (even though he wasn’t in control) and how it hurt the people around him and couldn’t be sure that it wouldn’t happen again.

So what do you do?

You write a story where all of these white people sit around judging Nick Fury for not sucking up to the man who tried to murder him. (And you have Steve and Natasha judging him like they wouldn’t understand faking his death when a white supremacist organization has already tried to murder him in public once before.)

You write a story that ignores MCU canon and Bucky’s personality so that you can demonize a Black man for moving on from the Avengers and living his life.

You write a story that doesn’t even make sense from line to line (like what even are you doing with Bucky’s moods here).

There’s no reason why Bucky would be so annoyed by Nick’s continuing survival since he doesn’t know the man or have any beef with him. Hydra’s vendetta was not his vendetta and there is no actual reason in canon for any of the Avengers to hate Nick Fury. None. There’s no reason for him to decide that Nick owes it to him to go “hey, I’m alive” despite the fact that they have never interacted outside him BLOWING NICK FURY UP AND TRYING TO KILL HIM.

To you, you’re just writing a “cute and quirky” epilogue that allows you to address Nick Fury’s absence. It’s not a big deal. But to people (all fans, not just Black ones) who are fans of Nick Fury in the MCU, it’s indicative of how fandom can’t just let Black characters live.

(See how Sam Wilson went from Nanny figure and Team Therapist to an asshole that’d hurt poor, innocent Bucky because he can’t bring himself to get over how Bucky has attacked him multiple times as of CACW.)

I’m not surprised though because fandom has been vilifying Nick Fury since he showed up and didn’t suck up to everyone’s respective favorite white characters.

When they’re not making him the desexualized team dad, fandom has been writing him as a manipulative lying bastard who just wants to keep Stucky/Stony/Clintasha/Starcy apart because he’s mean like that. There are next to ZERO Nick Fury stories in the MCU that don’t tear his character to shreds in order to make white characters look better.

What you’re doing here with your story crapping on Nick Fury for literally living isn’t anything new. It’s antiblack as fuck, annoying as hell and played out, but it’s definitely not new.

Maybe rethink the next time you get a message like this, because for Black fans of Bucky andNick Fury? This is just a slap in the face that once again tells us that we’re not welcome and characters that look like us don’t belong.

And if you seriously don’t understand where you went wrong and why this is upsetting, readTHIS POST and click on all the links. Mkay? Because this sort of thing is NOT OKAY.

*stitchmediamix

Imagine Bucky understanding that despite Hydra traumatizing him and forcing him to commit violence, no one in the MCU (especially Black characters like Nick Fury and Sam Wilson) has to “get over” their trauma at having him hurt them in order to speak with him and make him feel better about what he’s done while under someone else’s control.

Oh wait, that’s canon. Too bad fandom hasn’t received the memo.

*finnnorgana artepen

artepen:

dazzledfirestar:

russianspacegeckosexparty:

dazzledfirestar:

side eyeing the fuck out of this but idk if it’s just… gross or what.

Like… ugh.

What kind of asshole? The kind that wants to live after you put three fucking shots in his back, FUCK WAD!

This is why I hate this fucking fandom. Fuck Bucky. Fuck his fans. You can all choke.

… I’m gonna vomit, WHY WAS THIS NECESSARY?! Nick Fury didn’t do anything to B*cky but of course, fandom warped shit into being so that no matter what Fury did or didn’t do was harmful to B*cky. Fury was busy saving the world and HAD to fake his death to help save shit, it wasn’t an offense towards B*cky. What, was he supposed to go track B*cky down personally and assure this man he doesn’t know that tried to kill him that he’s not in the wrong?

Also just… why would Bucky think that there being one less name on the list of people he killed as the Winter Soldier is a BAD THING?

Like what kind of logic even…

But I guess they just want Nick dead that badly. Just being out of the picture isn’t enough. He should have rolled over and died like a good target. Gee I wonder why they feel that way? >.>

Like just admit you hate black people and move on why even write a nasty ass ficlet that goes against everything Bucky stands for and completely ignores how it is CANON that he regrets everything he did while under hydra’s control? Like why waste the fucking time to be nasty just why?

Source: dazzledfirestar good god fandom racism

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 *This is akin to the same attitude in fandom where WoC are asked to stan for White women’s issues, but when we need the support, they are nowhere to be found, all the while, crowing about how progressive and inclusive they are. How is that any different from White men crying about how they aren’t racist while practicing it? This girl’s Twitter response to Leslie Jones harassment is the same thing.

finnnorgana artepen

sekushionyanko-blog:

ambelle:

Remember that time white feminists pitched a fit demanding that black women ( everyone’s go to attack dog ) do something to save Agent Carter from being cancelled because it was a uber feminist show. And we were meant to ignore the lack of diversity because white women were being represented. And we collectively said hell no and it was this huge thing. They are allowed to be infuriated by our rightful silence because their issues matter and ours don’t. So naturally it’s no big deal if Leslie’s co stars don’t come to her defense publicly because whatever. Fighting racism can’t be done silently or in private but again who cares it’s not happening to their fave transphobic lesbian. I never forgot that Agent Carter BS and I won’t forget this either.

#iamnotourmule

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boostergoldmansachs:

y’all… if your friend was receiving violent racial harassment for months, and the had their website hacked and their personal photos and info leaked, why would you not publicly support them?

what good is telling someone in private “hey i support you”, when you literally have the power to mobilize your own fans in defense of them?

it’s shady af that the rest of the ghostbusters cast has said nothing, it’s shady af that they haven’t been vocal, and it’s so fucking telling that all you white feminists are jumping to their defense like black women haven’t seen this shit go down thousands of times, like this hasn’t happened to us consistently over the course of our lives

like it’s obvious when people aren’t riding, and don’t intend to ride for us, and then y’all have the fucking NERVE to ask us for our support

i’m done with white women lol y’all are so myopic and selfish and honestly i’m tired of being called to the table to defend y’all when most of you cannot be bothered to think for even a MOMENT about WoC, god forbid TWoC

finnnorgana Source: boostergoldmansachs
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*This is the reason I had so much trouble watching Jessica Jones. its not even a bad show. I applaud that its talking about some controversial issues and doing so in a sensitive and forthright manner, but I couldn’t get past this part of the show. It reminded me too much of what I’d gone through in the Agent Carter fandom and how the white fans of that show mistreated the poc fans. Since Agent Carter, I’ve been very wary about appeoaching any fandom that for any show with a white female lead and a lack of poc. Its just better not to get near them.

steadfastclara:

Jessica Jones is a racist show, especially anti-black.

Not only did they kill Clemmons in a very graphic way, they also made Malcolm an addict because of course they did. But not even that gross, racist storyline was his. Kilgrave made him so, to get at Jessica and she, in turn, used him. She put him in danger, she mocked his sufferings and made his addiction about herself. Frankly, it was. We were never shown him actually fighting, resisting to it. He was an addict and then, he was fine. Eventually, he became the support system of Ruben’s sister, another white girl willing to step on him if needs be. From beginning to end, Malcolm was a pawn and a liability, his efforts to insert himself on the narrative dismissed with a patronizing pat on the back.

Luke Cage got off worse. This show was supposed to lead the way to his own show, premiering in  2016. Luke Cage, that historical hero, impervious to bullets, whose story matters so much as of now. We were introduced with is character through Jessica’s binoculars, as she stalked him.

He is shown having sex with a black woman. Said black woman, it turned out, was cheating on her husband with him, allowing us to understand a bit more about Luke as he declines her advances. A straight-up guy, he “doesn’t do drama”. Never once is that woman shamed for her choices, however. She’s confident and upfront and challenges Jessica, calling her out on her obsession with Luke. Nevertheless, she is soon forgotten, set aside to let Jessica and Luke’s story begin. She was the only black woman with a speaking role in the whole series and her potential was already conveniently abandoned before the end of the pilot.

From that moment onward, Luke is surrounded by white people. His colleague is a white guy and all his scenes are with Jessica. He has no world, no friends, no relations. He is utterly othered, rarely if ever sharing the camera with another POC and linked solely to Jessica.

Their relationship is physical, leading to many sexual scenes between the two. The spectator watches as a blooming fondness is born, a trust shared. Luke helps Jessica in many ways, his moral support giving her a drive and a new-found confidence in her abilities. That, in itself, is already symptomatic of a lack of balance in their interactions. Never once is Jessica here for him, to propel his story. So far, there is none to tell. He has no ties but her.

The truth comes out, eventually. Jessica killed his wife, a black woman once again set aside by the narrative to propel their romance. She killed her and never told him, even though she knew who he was. She tricked him, abused of his trust and only came clean because she had to. Luke doesn’t shy from stating how violated he feels, how betrayed. He is completely disgusted with the very though of having slept with his wife’s murderer, showing to the spectator how wrong Jessica’s actions were. Jessica raped him and there is nothing more painful to watch than his face as he realises what she’s done. Mike Colter plays it with such intensity and raw pain, it’s unbearable.

His plight doesn’t end here, however. Kilgrave finds him and learns about is relationship with Jessica. Because they could, the writers didn’t refrain from showing the former bewildered with the very idea of their  interracial entanglement, referring to it as a “pity shag”. He proceeds to take control of Luke, unbeknownst to the spectator. Throughout a whole episode, Luke is literally forced by the narrative to forgive Jessica, to stay near her and to offer his moral support, once more. He has no choice, no say in this. Yet, we are never showed that. His turmoil remains silent, the focus staying on Jessica and her relief at being once again the receptacle of Luke’s affection. His story and feelings are of little consequence. He is pushed back in the arms of his aggressor, by Kilgrave but also by the narrative. That state of helplessness, which is so often described as traumatizing and painful, holds only emotional weight when Jessica learns that him forgiving her wasn’t real. The consequences on his mental well-being aren’t worth dwelling into because, as per usual, only Jessica and their ship matter.

Knocked unconscious for the entirety of the finale (!!!!), Luke is powerless as Jessica holds him, kisses him and professes her love. Once again, he is but a silent witness, a barely consenting participant in that poor excuse for romance.

This show is racist and romanticizes the abuse of black people. And that’s not right in the slightest.

fandomshatepeopleofcolor Source: autisticlynch
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