News After San Diego

Last week was the 50th San Diego Comic Con, and we got  some exciting news and trailers from it. Well, exciting for me, at any rate.

Let’s start with the trailers for forthcoming movies and shows:

Top Gun

I am not a Top Gun fan, because I’m just not into military films, as a rule, but I know some of you guys are really into this stuff, so here’s the new trailer  for it. Its funny but I’ve seen all of Tom Cruise’s movies, but would not call myself a fan of his. He just just keeps starring in things that interest me, like spy movies. Perhaps the word I would prefer to use is “tolerate”.

 

 

Creepshow

I just watched these movies back to back a few weekends ago, and they’re still pretty effective.  The original films were an odd mix of horror and humor, and I hope this new show can hold up to the same standards.

 

 

Picard

After the success of Star trek Discovery, I am cautiously excited about this show. I really like Jean Luc Picard as a character, and I really like the idea of him having more adventures after his retirement, and it looks gorgeous. Buuuuut…. I’m still not as enthusiastic about it, as I think I should be, and I wonder if I have Star Trek fatigue. Nevertheless, I’m gonna check this out.

 

 

The Witcher

Not sure how I feel about this show. I’m not a gamer, and only know about this show, and this world, from reading books about the artwork. I keep having to suppress laughter at Henry Caville’s wig, which is very distracting, and  I don’t know why. On the other hand, this trailer looks fucking awesome!

 

 

Watchmen

This is another trailer that looks really  interesting, but I’m not a huge fan of the movie, beyond thinking it looked pretty, nor am I a fan of the philosophies espoused in it, and I’m not sure I want to watch an entire season of something this intense. I can think of a whole bunch of reasons not to watch this, in fact, but I probably will watch it, because I love Regina King , and I’ve never seen her is this type of role before. We keep asking for these types of roles with Black women, and then don’t support them, so I’m definitely gonna be there, but I’m afraid  I may not actually enjoy it.

 

Preacher

I missed the last season  of this show, but I can see by the trailer, that its as zany as it ever was.

 

 

Star Trek Short Treks

I may have to subscribe to CBS All Access again because they are making more of these little one offs, that look really good. I enjoyed the last three or four they made, which occurred between the season’s for Discovery, and were basically back stories for some of the characters we met last season, or some established characters, and one of them presented an interesting mystery for the future, that had bearing on the end of the last season! So I am looking forward to what I’m going to see here. It looks like fun, and I really did enjoy this version of  Spock, btw.

 

Batwoman

I’m really excited about this show, but only because I saw the a couple of The Legends of Tomorrow episodes which featured this actress. Yes, the dialogue is atrocious, but then the same thing was said about Titans, and I liked it okay. This trailer has been horribly panned by well…the usual suspects really, but I’m past caring whether or not they think something is bad or good, based on whether or not there’s women in it.

I gotta say, that while the MCU may be tearing it up on the big screen, the DCEU is killing it on the small one, ,as far as diversity, and inclusion, with plenty of characters of color (that they don’t always get right, but at least they’re trying, which is more than I can say for the MCU), but also plenty of openly gay and lesbian characters, (of which the MCU has but none), who are not all White people. The DCEU really does need to  work on the  dialogue though.

 

 

Snowpiercer

I watched the original move, and while I got the message behind it, it was still so incredibly depressing that it didn’t even make my favorites list for the year of its release. The trailer looks fascinating, but I don’t know if I want to visit this horrible little world on a regular basis. W’ell see how I feel bout it after its air date.

 

 

Wu Assassins

This looks like pure, campy, martial arts fun! It heavily reminds me of last Power Rangers movie.

 

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And the big news is the upcoming slate of movies and shows from phase 4 of The MCU, including Black Panther 2, Captain Marvel 2, The Eternals, Guardians of the Galaxy 3, and Blade, and The X-Men!

Now, its been said that the new Blade movie is a reboot, and will star Maharsala Ali who has been wanting to play Blade for a while, and people are very excited abut this, (including me).

Its also been stated that Blade, like Deadpool, and Venom, which are not actually a part of the MCU in the same way as Doctor Strange, and Spiderman, will be a standalone franchise, like the other two, or maybe part of phase 5, or a TV show, or well…its not exactly clear. On the other hand, Blade may actually be part of the MCU, and there might possibly be a crossover with Dr. Strange, as in the comic books, there is a crossover between Strange, Morbius, and Blade. There will definitely be a Morbius movie though, so I’m hopeful that is the plan for these movies.

I love, love, love, the Blade movies, and have watched all the other versions, but remain unimpressed by those. A lot of people forget that there was a  live action television show, and a cartoon, as well, and Wesley Snipes recently did a brief cameo on the hit TV series, What We Do In The Shadows.

Mahershala Ali is the only Muslim actor to receive an Oscar, for his role as the drug dealing Juan in the movie Moonlight, so I am really looking forward to seeing him in this new version. If you want to see what he’d be most like as Blade, then check out his character in Battle Angel Alita, which looks like he’s auditioning for the role.

 

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More news from the CON is that Natalie Portman will be starring in the new Thor movie, which will be directed by Taika Waititi, and its rumored that she will play the new Thor, like the character from the comics. Creators have clearly stated that Tessa Thompson’s Valkyrie is the only openly gay character in the MCU, and its possible (at least we hope it is, since Waititi is both the writer and Director) that we will see her get a Queen in the new movie. (This is after Thor has handed over his Kingship to her at the end of Endgame.)

 

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Ava Duvernay is making The Eternals, which will racebend the  white, male, character of Makkari,  to  a deaf Black woman. Lauren Ridloff you may remember from her stint on last season’s The Walking Dead. I’m good with this becasue I just really like this actress.

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There’s also news about the MCU: Shang Chi, about a brilliant martial artist, which has found its lead character actor, and his villainous opponent, The Mandarin, who will be played by Tony Leung, who has starred in Hero and The Grandmaster:

 

And for the rest:

 

 

Also, one more movie I’m really excited about, because I just love this idea of time traveling to save loved ones, and its an opportunity to showcase, yet another, little Black girl in a Thriller, is this little gem, called Don’t Let Go! I thought at first it was going to be a ghost movie, but it turns out to be a little more in depth than that, and I’m here for it..

 

 

 

 

 

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Movies Normalize the Harming of Black Bodies

Questioning Authorial Intent

I think it’s time we started discussing a writer’s intention in creating marginalized characters. It doesn’t particularly matter to me whether its done consciously or unconsciously, but we need to speak about how writers treat their characters of color, LGBTQ characters, and female characters.

The TV and movie industries have always been controlled primarily by white male writers. They write  women characters  according to what they think women are actually like, or wish they were and we have to be willing to admit that there are more than a few writers out there who fantasize about how they would like to treat women, and realize their fantasies through the characters they create. It’s also an industry made up of a lot of straight men, who have always been prone to homophobia, and who have  written gay characters the way they see them, or wanted them to be seen. And yes, in some cases they fantasize about these characters being  punished for being who they are. (This is something that has been well documented about women, and  Gay characters in movies. See: “The Celluloid Closet”, and documentaries on female characters in slasher films.)

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We have all become aware  of the unnecessary rape scenes of female characters, and the Kill Your Gays Trope, where the writers punish and kill women  for being  sexually forward, and the gay characters who lead tragic lives, only to die horribly. The same dynamic  seems to be at work for Black characters too, and the reason why may be the unconscious, (or hell, sometimes very conscious), racial resentment of White writers, who feel forced to include these characters in their work.

I’m not advocating that no Black characters ever be punished or killed, but I am questioning the intentions of the writers who do this, and I wonder if, like the OP above, if it’s resentment at having to include characters of color. More and more often, White writers are being called on to be inclusive beyond white, straight, able bodied, men, and some of them might feel some type of way about that.

Hollywood and TV have a long history of depicting White men bullying, torturing, and gunning down “the other”.  Is it any wonder that it is primarily White men who are the main perpetrators of mass acts of violence against women, (The Ecole Polytechnique Massacre) , gay and transgender, (The Pulse Nightclub Shooting), Blacks, (Charleston Church Shooting), Jews (The Synagogue Shooting), Muslims, (Christchurch),  and others too numerous to mention. (This is not including regular acts of police brutality against people of color, and hate crimes against immigrants, and Jewish people.)

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What is new in Pop culture is an influx of Black characters being written by white writers, who think they’re being inclusive, but  who have not done their due diligence on racial issues, or Black culture. Sometimes, I’m seeing characters of color get bullied, tortured, punished, or killed in the narrative by White characters, some of whom are meant to be heroes, and I’m starting to believe that White characters  are stand ins for the writer’s own racial resentment. These characters get to do the kinds of things to Black characters that the writers, whether consciously or not, would like to do themselves, which is sometimes telling off, or hurting, or punishing “The Other”.

I have written before about how Black characters have been traditionally created in the white imagination, often associated with crime, murder, and sexual brutality, (That’s about how racial ideas in the real world get reflected in pop culture). I’m now talking about a different iteration of this theme, and I’m going to use the MCU  as an example, because this is where I first noticed it.

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The series The Defenders, is an amalgamation of the other Netflix series in the MCU,  Luke Cage, Daredevil, Iron Fist, and Jessica Jones, (all of which have since been canceled). In the one season of The Defenders, there are approximately two Black men, one of whom is a villain. There’s a scene where he is being tortured by Daredevil and Iron Fist, while the other team members stand around and debate this tactic. What you have is a team of superheroes torturing a Black man for information, and this is being shown as okay, even though real world specialists on this issue, have clearly stated that torture does not work as a tactic for getting information.

https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/we-rsquo-ve-known-for-400-years-that-torture-doesn-rsquo-t-work/

The prevalence of torture, committed by ostensibly good guys, in movies and TV shows, also accounts for the dramatic rise in  the public’s belief in torture as a real world tactic that  Americans should use in the fight against anyone who is considered “a bad guy”. Since Black men are stereotypically  associated with crime…well, you see where this is going.

 

And this isn’t limited to The Defenders, because Jessica Jones contains the scene of the unceremonious killing of the only  Black woman in the show, and Jessica’s disregard for the life of the only other Black character on the show has been duly  noted.  The Punisher, Iron Fist, and Daredevil are all known for showing their White protagonists beating up, torturing,  and killing whole squads of men of color. I mentioned, in a previous post, how Iron Fist had a nasty problem with beating up young Black men, without asking questions first. Even Spiderman tries to get in on the action by trying to intimidate a Black man he needs information from. (That he fails to intimidate him isn’t the point. The point is that he tried it, and that that was his first, go-to, move.) For the record, none of these supposedly heroic characters limit themselves to torturing only Black men. All men of color are fair game, as evidenced by the sheer number of Asian bodies Daredevil mows down, in any season.

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Many of the MCU movies have such moments. In Captain America: The Winter Soldier, you have another man of color being tortured for information by Captain America,  Black Widow, and Falcon. In Captain America Civil War you have a scene where Rhodey, Tony’s Black sidekick is injured by Vision, but Tony punishes Falcon,  for an incident that he was not responsible for. In Iron Man 3, Tony threatens the man he thinks is the Mandarin, by brandishing a gun at him to get information. To be absolutely honest, heroic characters of any race often get in on the torture of villains in the MCU. In the movie Black Panther, a movie written by a Black man, there are scenes of T’Challa beating up a villain  for information.

Primarily, this is about the use of torture by any “superhero “, towards men of color. These characters are all still  written by white men, and all these supposedly “good people”  end up harming or torturing men of color. (To be absolutely fair “good guys’ torturing “bad guys” is a problem across most, if not all, superhero comic books, but in the movies, these bad guys have a tendency to be men of color.)

https://www.complex.com/pop-culture/2018/04/racist-moments-in-comic-book-history/

We know racism is real. That is not a matter for debate. We also know that people, in the fandoms surrounding these movies, regularly engage in racist thoughts and actions regarding characters of color, and show a great deal of resentment and hatred for them. What I am questioning here is the idea that, somehow, writers of  Fantasy  TV and movies are somehow exempt from racial resentment because …well, they’re creators, I guess.

And just because the hero committing the torture is Black, that does not make the situation exempt from this criticism, as these are Black characters as interpreted through the lens of  White writers. White writers create these characters, making them say and do whatever they want, including voice their own racial resentments, as what happened with Nick Spencer’s  version of Falcon as Captain America. Nick Spencer wrote a parody version of SJWs, and later Sam Wilson, who had been written as a voice of reason, apologized to Steve Rogers for ever having been like them. A Black man apologizes to a White man for ever having been a passionate activist!

https://www.dailydot.com/parsec/captain-america-sam-wilson-nick-spencer-controversy/

Over and over again, White audiences (which this sort entertainment is primarily written for) are subjected to the concept that its okay for good (ie. White) men to beat up on, and/or torture, Black men.  Vigilantism. Is it any wonder that there’s is so little  empathy for Black characters in movies and TV, (The Racial Empathy Gap), or that White people are quick to make excuses for White men’s violent aggression against Black men.

The most recent case of real life vigilantism was when Trayvon Martin was killed by George Zimmerman, and it was Trayvon who was painted as a villain who deserved to be shot by the innocent Zimmerman, who was just trying to protect his neighborhood. This is how such vigilantism plays out in the real world. How is what happened to Trayvon different from a scene in Iron Fist or Daredevil, which are shows about fine upstanding White men, who just want to protect their neighborhoods.

White America has always told such stories, which often resulted in the beatings and lynchings of Black Americans, when White men take it upon themselves to protect against Black criminality. Two of the overwhelming messages in Pop culture, (books, movies, and TV shows), for decades, is that vigilantism is a perfectly acceptable response to criminality, and that Black men are  the criminals, who deserve whatever violence is meted out to them by White men.

There is a connection between the normalization of brutality against marginalized bodies onscreen, and White male brutality agaonst “the other” in the real world. One of these is a reflection of the other, but which of these, remains the question. And what is served by showing audiences image after image of White heroes willing to do their worst to marginalized others?

Guardians of the Galaxy: Making The Chosen Family

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I love ensemble movies that are done well, and James Gunn is exceptionally good at writing, not just the characters, but the relationships between the characters. GOTG isn’t just a movie about blowing shit up real good, it’s about the creation of a family, specifically the family that one chooses for oneself, something which is layered, threaded, and  referenced repeatedly, throughout both movies. The character’s adoptive families have proven to  be either unreliable, or openly abusive, and  it is  their chosen family, their found family (each other) that  turn out to be more trustworthy, and caring.

But they cannot truly be a part of their chosen family until they deal with their traumas, learn to take care of themselves, learn how to treat the others, and in a couple of cases, atone for past misdeeds.

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In the first movie, we meet all the characters separately. We get to know their flaws and issues. We are to understand  that these characters are assholes, who can’t get along with themselves, let alone each other. They each have personal issues that prevent them from  being close to others. Peter Quill is an arrogant, immature, and reckless man, who is also a carefree womanizer. We later learn that he was kidnapped from Earth, and raised by an emotionally abusive alien, named Yondu. Peter is still suffering the trauma of his mother’s death, some twenty years before, which he has never truly dealt with. All of the characters, except for Groot, are suffering from some parental trauma that prohibits them from forming healthy relationships with the others.

Peter is immediately smitten with Gamora, but she is too beset by her own issues, and he is inadequate as a partner, so the two of them cannot be together. The two of them are too damaged. Their issues need to be brought out into the open and dealt with first.

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Gamora is the adopted daughter of an abusive father, Thanos, the villain from Infinity War. She hates Thanos for good reason,  but she is also estranged from her adopted sister, Nebula, because of Thanos’ abusive upbringing, which pitted the two of them against each other. One of the most telling moments about the nature of their relationship, is Thanos, while in conference with the movie’s villain, referring to Gamora as his favorite daughter, as Nebula is standing directly in front of him, while  we get a closeup of her facial expression. Gamora was so caught up in surviving being Thanos’ daughter, that she never had time to protect her little sister from him, and the two of them never formed bonds.

This is a staple dynamic of siblings that have abusive parents, especially if one of them is considered to be  favored over another. I would wager that that was very probably Thanos’ agenda in treating them the way he did, to keep them from finding solace in each other, so as to keep them from turning on him. Both Nebula and Gamora  are icy in their demeanor, stiff, closed off , and unapproachable. Nebula spends most of the movie trying to kill her sister, although after having reluctantly spent some time with the Guardians, we realize her hatred of Gamora may not be as deep as she thinks, or reciprocated.

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Drax is suffering from the loss of his wife and child through the machinations of the movie’s villain, Ronan the Accuser. Drax is, paradoxically, the most emotionally open character in the film, as he frankly discusses the love he had for his wife and child, and how much their deaths pained  him. Of all of the team, Drax is the one who is at least willing to acknowledge that he has trauma, but Drax spends most of the movie in revenge mode, as he tries to attract Ronan’s attention, often endangering his team mates in the process. Drax is not malevolent, however, he is deeply insensitive to the feelings of others, and somewhat clueless. After Groot saves his life, and  Rocket  calls him to task for his reckless actions, Drax is contrite and apologetic. It is he and Groot, (with Rocket’s reluctant agreement), who make the decision to save their teammates (who have been taken by Yondu).

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Of all the characters though, it is Rocket who has the deepest trauma. Rocket is an experimental animal subject, who was abandoned by his creators, (i.e. his parents), when his usefulness to them was over, and most of his negative personality traits stem from that events. He is impatient, mistrustful, arrogant, callous, hurtful, aloof. He pushes people away because he fears getting close to anyone he thinks may leave him. Many of Rocket’s worst character traits also come from the   crippling insecurity of being what he is, and being the only one of his kind in existence. Outside of his relationship with Groot, who is non- judgmental, he is profoundly alone, with no family, no culture, and no race that he belongs to. He is very sensitive to being spoken down to or treated as less than he is. These are things he is only willing to acknowledge when he’s drunk.

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Groot is the most well adjusted of the team. He is a fierce and awesome fighter, but he is also gentle and giving, when the occasion presents itself. We first notice this when we see him offer a small flower to a little girl. He  is the most “even tempered” of the all characters, and is usually unperturbed by the events around him.  His most altruistic moment is when he knowingly gives his life to save his teammates.  It is through his act of love that the other character become aware  that they are indeed a family. Like Drax, he is emotionally open, the one most willing to admit these others into his  life, care about them, and admit they are his family.

James Gunn, the director and writer of GOTG, and its sequel, does us one better. Not only does he introduce each one of these characters with their traumas, but he shows them moving past them to acceptance of each other, working together as an effective team, and then finally trusting each other, across the two films. Slowly, bit by bit, Gunn builds each  moment between the characters, until the  end of the movie, when we see all of them come together to save Peter, and the galaxy,  by managing the Power Stone.

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At first, they are together because its convenient. The other characters have something they want. Later, they are together because they want to be.  The action scenes don’t just serve to blow things up real good, but to help tell the story of the development of their relationships.

At the beginning of the first movie, the action scenes show all the characters pitted against themselves, or each other. By the time the characters land in prison, they are in the second stage of, at least, being willing to work together to accomplish the goal of getting out of prison, at which they are successful. But  they do not yet realize they are a real  team.They’re not friends yet, and  are still very selfish individuals, who are only together because of what they can do for each other. At this point in the action, they are at least  in a place where they are willing to acknowledge they need each other, but not where they trust and like each other. By the time they fight with the Nova Corp against Ronan at the end of the movie, they are together because they want to be, they actually trust each other, and realize they can accomplish more with each other, than against each other, which culminates in Groot’s sacrifice for his friends, which he makes clear is an act of love. His statement, “We are Groot.”, is his declaration that he loves them, they are his family, and he is willing to do this to save them.

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There is a quiet, but beautiful, moment when Drax comforts Rocket, in the aftermath of Groot’s death, while Rocket is mourning the loss of his friend. At first, Rocket is surprised, but eventually gives in to Drax petting him. No one has ever shown affection to him before. It is a mark of their friendship, not just that Rocket accepts this comfort, but that Drax offers it, because until this moment he has been deeply insensitive to the feelings of others having  referred to Rocket as “vermin”, and Gamora as a “green whore”. Rocket has not endeared himself to anyone, and has been openly exasperated with Drax for much of the film. In this one gesture, James Gunn deepens both their characters. Drax learns to recognize another’s pain, and not disregard it, and Rocket learns to accept comfort, when he’s in pain.

But Gunn doesn’t stop there, because that’s not the end of these character’s personal journeys. In the second movie, he builds on the idea of found family by adding the themes of understanding, forgiveness,  reconciliation, and atonement, to the character’s relationships. It’s not enough for them to trust each other, work together, and understand their choice to be a family, each one of them must admit their own pain,  recognize and understand  each other’s pain, and atone for past mistakes. Gunn does this by pairing specific characters together, like Yondu and Rocket, Nebula and Gamora, and Peter with his biological father, Ego.

At the opening of the second film, they are seen together as a team. They’ve been lauded as heroes of the galaxy, and have been together for some time, long enough for them to have grown to like Peter’s musical tastes, and crack jokes at each other. There is still some tension that is mostly resolved through bickering, but they  have accepted each other, even if they don’t understand each other. They cannot be at peace with each other though, because they are not at peace individually, but the title song, Blue Skies, indicates they’re in a good place from which to start the process.

The first action sequence exists to show them acting as a successful team, and parenting baby Groot.  Notice that each one of them gets a moment with Groot. (I especially liked Gamora’s hurried “Hi!”, after Groot waves at her, and Rocket’s diligence in making sure he doesn’t eat bugs.). Groot is still the warm center of the team. Later, we see Gamora reassuring Groot that she will return from an errand and that everything will be okay. As the group separates to go on different errands, the song, The Chain by Fleetwood Mac plays over that scene. No matter how far apart they are, the chain that binds then will never be broken. They will always be a family.

Over the course of the last movie, we witnessed Gamora being willing to show a softer, more caring, side of herself. Her sister, Nebula, isn’t in that place yet, but Gamora is in a an emotional place where she can finally hear Nebula’s pain. We saw the estranged relationship between Gamora and her sister, and we get some understanding of why.   Nebula attempts to kill her sister again, (although  we can see that she isn’t trying especially hard). At the end of their fight, she declares that she has has beaten Gamora, and this makes her the better daughter to Thanos. All we have seen of Nebula is that she is hard, cold, and jealous of Gamora, because every time she lost a contest to her sister, Thanos would forcibly replace one of her body parts with machinery, as  punishment. Gamora realizes she was so busy surviving  her own trauma, that she failed to see her little sister’s need for protection. It is her relationship with her chosen family that lets her realize she has failed to be a big sister. It is Nebula who turns out to be the sensitive one, who longed for a relationship with her sister, she could not have, because of their  shared trauma.

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Later, Gamora expresses the first real affection towards her that Nebula has ever experienced. Gamora has listened to her sister, and is ready to atone for her past mistake of not protecting her, (something we see play out in Infinity War) and Nebula, having had her pain recognized and acknowledged, is now in a place where she can forgive and trust.  Nebula’s acceptance of Gamora’s affection parallels Rocket’s acceptance of comfort from Drax in the first movie. Nebula and Gamora are not friends yet, because there is too much trauma between them, but they have reconciled, and have, at least, agreed to stop trying to kill each other. Gamora extends the idea  to Nebula that if she wants a family,  she and the rest of the Guardians will accept her.

Another moment of character growth occurs between Rocket and Yondu. A lot of people have expressed the idea that Yondu’s change of character comes out of nowhere, but I disagree. We are given subtle hints, throughout the first movie, that Yondu is not actually evil. He is a flawed man who has done bad things for money, and  is not actually malevolent. For example, our first indication that Yondu might not be all he seems, is his adoption of Peter, when he was meant to deliver him to Ego. In the first movie, he is given plenty of opportunities to punish or kill Peter, but keeps making excuses not to do so. Over the course of the movie, you begin to realize he actually likes him. At the end of the movie, Peter betrays him yet again, but Yondu just smiles, as if he  not only expected Peter to do it, but was proud of him for it.

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At the opening of the sequel, we see Yondu in a vulnerable moment, pensively looking out a window. He is perhaps haunted by his past, which a few moments later, comes back to bite him in the ass, as he is dressed down by his superior, a father figure that he has always looked up to, and he is  excommunicated from The Ravagers, for trafficking children like Peter, which goes against their rules. Later, his own gang overthrows him, because he treats Peter as his favorite, over them. Yondu eventually acknowledges  that he was wrong to abuse him, that he loved Peter, and atones for his past transgressions by sacrificing  his life, to save his chosen son. (Note: One of the biggest differences between Yondu, Ego, and Thanos is when Yondu lost everything, he apologized and atoned. Thanos and Ego did neither, made excuses, and then sacrificed their children for their goals.)

We finally come to Rocket, who is very probably the most damaged member of the team, who has not dealt with any of his trauma, in any satisfactory manner. His character arc is not fully realized until the end of the second movie, after Yondu’s death,  but it is the relationship he develops with Yondu that forces him to rethink himself. This revelation could not have occurred were it not for the relationship he developed with his chosen family, and Groot in particular.

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After Groot’s sacrifice in the first movie, Rocket saves a fragment of his friend, and grows an offshoot baby Groot. All of the team take turns nurturing and caring for Groot, but Rocket is the closest thing Groot has to a mother, having essentially grew and birthed him. It is through his relationship with his chosen son, and Peter calling out his behavior earlier in the movie, that Rocket is set up to be able to hear Yondu’s words about himself, as Yondu accurately reads him, understanding  Rocket’s behavior through his own motivation. Fear.

Rocket is afraid people will abandon him, the way his creators did, so he is constantly  pushing them away, so that when and if they reject, him he will be ready. It will be what is expected because he doesn’t think highly of himself, and  feels he does not deserve love and acceptance. His family gets angry with him, but they don’t leave him, or push him out, so the meaner he behaves. Them rejecting him will prove that he is correct about himself, that he is worthless and should be alone. (Note: Of all the characters in Avengers Infinity War, it is Rocket’s predicament that is the most tragic. Having finally accepted  that the team is his family, and will not abandon him, Thanos snaps his fingers, his family is destroyed, and he is as entirely alone as he terribly feared. With a snap of his fingers Thanos has set back Rocket’s entire character arc.)

Rocket is not healed by Yondu’s words, but he reaches an  understanding, that he is taking his unhappiness with himself, out on his family, and if he does not change, he will end up alienated from  his child,  like Yondu was with Peter. The last time we saw Rocket cry, it was for losing his friend. This time it’s for himself. For all the time he wasted being mean to the the people who accepted him, despite that he kept pushing them away. The movie ends with a shot of Rocket’s tears, after Peter’s acknowledgment of his pain. Peter’s recognition and acceptance of Rocket’s pain is important, not just for Rocket, but for Peter’s character arc, too. It is a sign of Peter’s growing maturity.

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The foundation of the movie  is Peter’s relationship with his two fathers, Ego, and Yondu, and his maturation into an adult. Two of Peter’s biggest issues is his arrogance (Ego), and his immaturity. Peter has been living a kind of extended childhood,with responsibilities to no one but himself, as if he stopped growing up after his mother’s death. His immature nostalgia for the past is the reason he cannot have a relationship with Gamora, and it made him easily manipulated by Ego, who appealed to that nostalgia. Ego is a planet sized creature that wishes to make over the galaxy in his own image, has tricked Peter into being a conduit for his power, and is another in a line of abusive father figures, throughout both movies.

Peter grows up when he rejects his father’s false promises of an idyllic past, he rejects “Ego” (his arrogance), and humbles himself to accept the help to destroy him. A key sign of Peter’s maturity is the loss of the Walkman music player that he was ready to kill for in the first movie. The music player represented his mother. When Ego destroys it, its as if he is killing Peter’s mother again, ( since Ego was the one responsible for her actual death). Killing Ego is also an act of closure for his mother’s death.  Notice how Peter’s character trajectory closely  parallels Gamora’s relationship with her abusive father.

The second major emotional turning point in the film is Peter’s reconciliation with Yondu. Yondu’s history is complicated, so I have to spend a moment discussing that. Yondu is the alien that kidnapped Peter when he was twelve, (just after the death of Peter’s mother, which is the reason why Peter has never had closure about that.) Yondu was supposed to give Peter to Ego, who has been collecting the children he seeded throughout the universe. When his children proved useless to him he killed them, and has killed thousands of these children, whose bones fill up a cavern in his planet sized interior.

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Yondu, while not an evil man, has been complicit in the deaths of hundreds, possibly thousands of children he kidnapped and took to Ego for money. After his kidnapping of Peter, he had an attack of conscience, and  stopped working for Ego. Keeping Peter was an act of rebellion, and an attempt to atone for the other children, because The Ravagers, the union of thieves he belongs to, disapproved of what he did. He justifies keeping Peter by claiming Peter’s usefulness to them and, afraid of looking weak to his men, he emotionally abuses Peter in front of them, while quietly approving of Peter’s behavior.

The Ravagers (lead by a man he greatly admires) kick him out of the group, and then his own personal team turns against him, captures Rocket, and imprisons the two of them together, which is how he gets to know Rocket so well.

In Rocket, Yondu sees a reflection of himself, and he tells Rocket as much. Everything has been taken from him, even though he followed all the rules of how to be a man. He was cool, and tough, and ruthless. He sublimated his love for Peter into saving his life time, and time, again, but otherwise failed to impress upon Peter that he was loved, choosing to threaten, and emotionally traumatize Peter instead, because he was afraid of being seen as weak. The very behavior he thought would save him from being condemned by his team is what makes his team condemn him. And with the return of Peter’s bio-father, he realizes that he lost out on the relationship he could have had with Peter, and he may be in danger of being replaced by Peter’s biological father, because he was too afraid. Not only is Yondu’s character arc one of atonement for past misdeeds, but is a rebuke of the toxic version of masculinity.

When Peter rejects his biological father, he is aided in this act by Yondu and the others. Yondu gives him some crucial words of advice at just the right time, which helps defeat Ego. Afterwards, Yondu and Peter are trapped on the dying planet, and Yondu sacrifices his life to get Peter to safety, but not before he lets Peter know how much he loved him, referring to himself as Peter’s daddy. He gives Peter his survival suit and, like Groot before him,  goes to his death, at peace with his actions. Since he is indirectly responsible for the deaths of possibly hundreds of children, giving up his life for Peter is not just to show Peter how much he loves him, but to atone for the deaths he helped to cause.

 

After Ego’s death, and Yondu’s sacrifice, Peter realizes that he has been less of a proper father figure for his own adopted child – Groot. For the first time in the movie we see him have a loving moment with Baby Groot, as he shares some music with him, gently cradling him with affection when Groot comes to him for reassurance. We did not get a chance to see this behavior earlier, as he mostly just barked orders at Groot.  In Infinity War we see him taking a more firm parenting role with him. We also see him taking a more mature stance with his family, not just recognizing Rocket’s pain at the end of the movie,  but understanding why.

James Gunn does a masterful job of showing us the dynamics behind the creation of a found family. We start off with individuals so damaged they cannot be a family, and we watch as they learn to forgive, accept, and understand  their own and each other’s flaws, recognize each other’s pain and trauma, and seek reconciliation and atonement for their past hurts. In the end, the members of the team CHOOSE to be a family, and in order to do so they must grow and change within themselves, and towards each other.

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Captain Marvel Trailer

 

This is one of those characters that I don’t actually know a whole bunch about despite my reading about her in some of the comic books and being peripherally aware of some of her backstory. I know that in the comic books, Carol Danvers has a very complicated storyline, with personality  and memory loss, (some of that was a result of  Rogue, from the X-Men, interacting with her, and stealing some of her memories and powers) .and I’m wondering how the movie is going to handle that part of her story, or if it will handle it all.

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The Black woman in the movie, Maria Rambeu, has a daughter named Monica Rambeu, who is also a superhero named Captain Marvel. (In the comic books, Monica was the first Captain Marvel, and she later changed her name to Photon.)

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For more information about this movie, look for The Marvel Encyclopedia, which discusses this character’s past, how she chose her name, the Kree-Skrull War, which appears to be prominently featured in this movie, more on Ronan The Accuser, (from Guardians of the Galaxy),and some of Nick Fury’s backstory, too.

I’m still not absolutely enthused about this movie, but it looks cool enough, I guess. I’m going to wait to see more in the trailers, before I get het up, though. To be honest, I got more excitement from watching people’s reactions to this trailer, than I did the actual trailer. I was especially interested in women’s reactions, and OMG! this woman is so excited, and so cute!

 

I just like to see people get excited about movies.

 

Weekend Reading List (The Pocket Files)

Guys! I’ve been horribly slack with the postings this week, but that doesn’t mean I’m not working on stuff. (Actually, I have not been doing anything, really.) I’ve been on a sort of vacay all week, but I’ll be back with more ramblings in June, starting Monday.

Here’s some of the lighter stuff that’s been sitting in my Pocket list for a while. Some of these are not new, but they’re new for me.

I loved this piece from BNP/Facebook writer, Stephanee Killen, about one of my favorite episodes of Star Trek, The Enemy Within. I must have unknowingly taken the episode to heart because I’ve always thought of my less attractive qualities as useful, positive things. Or at the very least tried to turn them into useful things.

Like a lot of people I suffer from anxiety. I don’t take medication for this, but I manage it very well. One of the ways I manage it is by turning it into something useful, like the ability to plan ahead. Making plans within plans is one of the ways I manage anxiety about things other people would probably consider trivial, like driving to new locations. When I have anxiety about something specific, I usually research the hell out of it, and the knowledge helps to alleviate some of the problem. Turning anxiety into knowledge is one of my ways of using a negative quality for good.

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In this particular episode, Kirk gets split into halves, a  passive, lighter side, and a darker, more negative side. The argument, illustrated beautifully in the show, is that Kirk needs his darker half to function competently as a Commander. 

I think the philosophy I most disagree with in Star Wars is the concept that light and dark are two separate things, and that one of them is undesirable. Star Trek’s more nuanced argument is that both these qualities are needed to form a whole, and that taken singularly, they’re both useless.

McCoy tells him, we’re all brutal animals. We all have our dark side. It’s human. The dark side holds strength. The light side holds caring, love, and courage. Spock, who understands duality better than most, indicates that what enables him to survive the differences between his two often-contrary halves is his intellect. Scotty eventually fixes the transporter. Kirk 1 and 2 get put back together, and the question of whether half a man can live is answered: No, he cannot—but thankfully, that’s not required.

http://blacknerdproblems.com/nerd-lessons-star-trek-the-dark-side/

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I am loving this newest season of Into the Badlands, and will have some opinions about that  next week. What I’m finding a hell of a lot of fun is the character of Nathaniel Moon. He’s an important part of the show, with his own story-line, and agenda, and even a love interest. 

I’ve seen this actor there and about, from time to time, but never gave him much attention. I’m gonna fix that right now, cuz Lawd, is he foine!

And do it he has. Since his first film role in the movie Colors (1988), Sherman hasn’t stopped sharpening his craft. With a career spanning over thirty years, he says that the characters, themes, setting and coworkers on Into the Badlands continue to inspire and motivate him.

http://blacknerdproblems.com/sherman-augustus-badlands-talks-film-football-acting-black/

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Here! Have some more Donald Glover think-pieces. It seems that every couple of months there’s some new artistic piece from a Black artist. We just sat through Black Panther, and then came Beychella (which I watched online), and the release of Glover’s video was a nice addition, marking 2018 as one of the “Blackest” years ever.

Jim Crow began as mere pop culture entertainment at the expense of America’s freed slaves and became the means of their oppression. The term “Jim Crow” became so pejorative this country’s apartheid separating Africans and their descendants from white Americans its name. pic.twitter.com/IEwLwfB2i4

http://www.indiewire.com/2018/05/justin-simien-analyzes-donald-glover-this-is-america-1201961450/

http://www.thisisinsider.com/this-is-america-music-video-meaning-references-childish-gambino-donald-glover-2018-5

https://thegrio.com/2018/05/07/this-is-america-5-powerful-messages-that-will-stay-with-you-long-after-your-donald-glover-hangover/

http://time.com/5267890/childish-gambino-this-is-america-meaning/

https://www.theatlantic.com/entertainment/archive/2018/05/this-is-america-childish-gambino-donald-glover-kinesthetic-empathy-dance/559928/

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Here’s an incredible review of Kaufmann’s 1978 remake of  Albert Finney’s Invasion of the Bodysnatchers. This is one of my all time favorite alien invasion movies, and although I did a film comparison of all the Invasion movies, I have yet to do a complete analysis/review of this one. I got some thoughts, ya’know! 

Like the remake of The Thing, it is a near perfect example of Science Fiction Horror. There’s not one wrong note of dialogue in it, the acting is superb, and the setting is perfect for its message. 

In a more thrilling flourish, Kaufman channels Alfred Hitchcock by cutting back-and-forth between pod people following Matthew and Elizabeth on a city street; as the two speed up, their clacking exaggerated for effect, we see the feet of their pursuers speeding up in unison, until both reach a sprint. 

https://deepfocusreview.com/definitives/invasion-of-the-body-snatchers/

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This has been sitting in my Pocket page just waiting to be deployed. The whole thing just tickled the hell out of me.

Animals That Look Like They’re About To Drop The Hottest Albums Ever

Obviously this is Country music (The chicken, tho’!)

The Up-And-Coming Music Legends

 

He ’bout to drop that hot new Mixtape

 

 

I swear to gob, these two look like Hall &Oates

 

That hot new Norwegian Emo Band, or The Verve. Pick One!

 

This is that new Rock band with the twin guitarists

The Band With The Twin Guitarists

 

 

There’s a whole bunch of these gothic looking pet pictures all over the internet. I’m still finding these deeply hilarious…

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 I actually love the Marvel Cinematic Universe, despite all my bitching. It is an unquestionably visually stunning place to visit, and even the worse movies in the MCU look gorgeous. They also look all of a piece, as if they really all belonged in the same world.

I grew up reading Marvel Comics. In fact, those were the first comic books I read (starting with Conan and Red Sonja.) I wasn’t thrilled when Marvel started pumping out these movies, but only because I hadn’t read any of the individual character’s books, and wasn’t particularly interested in their standalone movies. I was not a Captain America, Iron man, Ant Man, or Black Widow fan. I knew all these characters because they were in The Avengers, and I read all of those books. I dutifully watched the first few movies, not especially enthused, but cautiously interested. I didn’t get excited until the first Captain America movie, which turned out to be surprisingly good, and The Avengers movie clinched it. 

I still haven’t watched all the movies. I skipped the first two Thor movies, and the first Iron Man. I never cared about Ant Man, and never will, I’m betting, although I am a big fan of  The Wasp (from the comic books), so I might see that movie.

Here are some of the better MCU music videos on Youtube. This was one of the first ones I saw. Not all of them are this good, but the editing on this one, was astounding.

 

I liked this one because it includes everything in the MCU, including all of The Defenders, all except Blade (which really should have been included, along with the X-Men and Wolverine films, even though they’re not part of the MCU. Yet!)

 

 

I skipped the first two Thor movies. I watched maybe the first thirty minutes of the second one before I fell asleep. I did enjoy this last one because I knew the director, Taika Waititi, from What We Do in the Shadows, and I trusted his film making skills.

 

 

This video was pretty good too. The editor of this one was nice enough to include  action parallels from the different films, something which helps to reinforce the idea that these movies all take place in the same cinematic world. I do object to the music of this one. I just dislike the song, and  would’ve chosen something more energetic.

Black Panther Humor

I think you heard about those attempts to get White people to NOT go see the Black Panther movie, by posting false images of White people who’d gotten beat-downs for showing up at the theaters. It seems the template  these assholes were working from, came from the 80s, when a couple of movie theaters in California had riots at a showing of Spike Lee’s Do The Right Thing. For the past thirty years White bigots (and the news media, but really, what’s the difference) have been desperately hoping that something like would happen again.

Now you know,  once Black Twitter got wind of this, it was all bets are off. They really should’ve known better than to come for BP with that nonsense. 

— All these tweets were instantly and easily debunkedreverse image lookup toolsmake it easy to trace how the pictures of the bleeding “victims” were taken from stock-footage sites, TV shows, or legitimate news stories about domestic assault or other real attacks. Twitter users begin rapidly vetting each new false assault claim, responding to the posters by revealing their image sources. Twitter has suspended some of the accounts posting false assault claims.

https://www.theverge.com/2018/2/19/17029742/black-panther-fake-assault-stories-twitter-response-mockery-humor

But the  tweet to end  all other tweets, was this magnificent response, that for some reason, made me picture John Boyega in one of the lead roles. Brace yourself for  the funniest true life story on the internetz, involving a robot, time travel, babadooks,  and the monster from It Follows. This needs to be a movie now.

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Black Nerd Problems had to get in on this post by discussing, in humorous detail, how each member of the writing  staff was getting ready for The Ascension:

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Passport To Wakanda: How To Get Your Black Ass Ready For An Audience With The King

— To get back to my birthright, I’ve changed my name to something with a Z and an apostrophe in it. I have taken to wearing hoods everywhere I go, so I can look mysterious. When it is cold, I also wear a cape. I open my corporate emails with “To the People,” and close them with “For Wakanda”. My boss is too scared to ask me why. I bought a staff and a spear, which I practice with in the backyard. Well, maybe not “practice”. Ok, I *have* a staff and a spear. Actual practice would tire me out before the movie comes. I thought about using them to go out and solve crimes—I love Black Detective Twitter and NCIS: Los Angeles (the one with LL Cool J) but this ain’t Wakanda yet. This place won’t let me be great, but one day, one day soon… – Leslie

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In the new trailer for Infinity War, Okoye got jokes:

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People are getting funny on Youtube:

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Sometimes y’all just mean:

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We got memes:

When life imitates art.

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And there’s even a Black Panther Dance Challenge:

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On a more serious note, have more essays:

https://www.peoplesworld.org/article/black-panther-villain-killmonger-is-a-symbol-of-black-pain/

https://rollingout.com/2018/02/22/black-panthers-killmonger-character-offers-painful-reflection-black-america/

https://www.rollingstone.com/movies/features/black-panther-chadwick-boseman-ryan-coogler-cover-story-w516853

Forthcoming Movies 2017

This is a  somewhat premature list of the movies I’m most interested in  next year. Unfortunately, Black Panther isn’t coming out next year, so it’s not on this list ,although Star Wars 8 is being released, so that’s cool.

My big thing next year is the new Wolverine movie titled Logan. I love the trailer for this movie, and I enjoyed the Old man Logan series. I’m also a big fan of Wolverine’s kids, Daken and X-23, so this movie is a big yes for me, even though I don’t think Daken is in it because he is very openly gay, and the MCU is as allergic to gay representation,  as it is to positive Asian representation.

My second big yippee! is Luc Besson’s Valerian. I’ve seen every one  of Besson’s films since La Femme Nikita in 1990, and if you haven’t seen that, you need to get right on it, as it still holds up as a female lead action movie. Valerian looks like its going to be too much fun.

January

Hidden Figures –

I like the idea of telling Black stories that don’t involve us being tortured by White people. Also, I love Black women in Science.

A Monster Calls –

I probably won’t go see this because just the trailer brought me to tears. I’m going to be a blubbering mess in a theater.

Underworld: Blood Wars

I think everything that would’ve been said about Selene’s story was told in the first movie. I have completely lost any interest in this character.

Monster Trucks

I think this movie is supposed to be fun, but the monster in the truck just looks terrifying.

X3: Xander Cage –

The XXX movies are very possibly the funniest, most ridiculous stunt movies ever made. It’s hard not believe this  isn’t a parody.

Resident Evil: The FInal Chapter –

Hmmmmm! No!

I had no particular plans to see any of these movies in January, but I thought I’d list them just in case any of you were interested and I was trying to look fair by showing the trailers.

Psych! I’m not seeing any of these until they’re officially on DVD, approximately five days after their release.

February

Rings –

A mashup of Ju-On and The Ring

John Wick II –

This looks as much fun as the original.

The Great Wall –

Nope! Its got dragons in it but I really don’t feel like looking at Matt Damon’s face again so soon after I’ve  watched Jason Bourne.

Get Out – This looks hilarious in a Dave Chappelle kind of way.

Of these five movies, I only plan to see Get Out, which is a movie produced and directed by the creators of Key& Peele.  I love that show, so I’m highly interested in the movie.

I loved the first John Wick, and I wasn’t expecting to. I thought it would be a typical, middle-of-the-road, action flick, but it turned out to be okay, and more than a little fun. Keanu Reeves is playing a character that perfectly suits him.

I wouldn’t piss on that Great Wall movie if you paid me. I’m getting a little tired of Hollywood not letting Asians be the stars of their own stories, and quite frankly its starting to look more than a little  creepy that that’s what Hollywood is doing, even to people who don’t normally pay attention to that kind of stuff.

I’m going to ignore the existence of Rings. Just the thought of it is scary. We really don’t need a mashup of Ju-On and The Ring. Well, I don’t, but if you like that sort of thing,  Happy Screaming to You!

March

Logan –

I love this trailer. Johnny Cash songs get me every time.

Kong of Skull Island –

I wouldn’t normally care about this except Samuel L. Jackson and Tom Hiddleston are back together again, and it looks like it takes place entirely on the island, and that Kong appears to be winning.

Beauty and the Beast –

I’ll just stick with the animated version, mostly for the music. “Be Our Guest” is one of my favorite Disney songs ,of all time, so there’s nothing this movie could offer me that would top that entire sequence.

King Arthur: Legend of the Sword – ?

Power Rangers –

Back down memory lane, y’all! I used to watch this  ridiculous show with my little sisters. This looks waaay better than the TV show. I may take my niece to see this if she’s amenable.

Ghost in the Shell –

A big ol’ fat NO! I’ll just watch the original anime. The trailer doesn’t make me want to see this, and I’m  really tired of looking at Scarlett Johansen.

The standout movie for this month will be Logan.

April

Fast 8 – I’m only just getting into this franchise. I kinda liked the last two movies, and its got a very colorful cast, who all seem to like each other and get along well.

Lost City of Z – I read this book some time ago, and I’m a sucker for movies set in Jungles. I don’t know why.

May

The Autopsy of Jane Doe –

Looks intriguing. I won’t see it in the  theater but I will wait for the DVD.

Guardians of the Galaxy II –

My niece will definitely talk me into going to see this movie, so I really don’t have a choice about this, if I want to have peace in the house. (And I love Groot too, so…)

Pirates of the Caribbean #23 –

Whah?

Baywatch – Okay, I’ll bite. Why would I want to see this movie about a TV show that I loathed? Okay, other than the nice pecs?

June

Wonder Woman –

Naaw! I’m good.

The Mummy – But not that good, apparently. I could be talked into this one by a wayward relative.

World War Z II – Hey! I loved the books, but I like Brad Pitt, too. I can’t let him down. He needs me.

Kingsman II – I didn’t really enjoy the first film. I mostly tolerated it and parts of it were disturbing, and annoying. The creators are going to have to smarten this one up, or dumb it down, to get me to watch this.

So once again we’re getting almost nothing but sequels and remakes being released this summer.  I don’t actually  get as upset over this as some people, as I’ve enjoyed, and will enjoy, a number of sequels. I’m just making a note of this.

Also, I don’t plan to see everything that gets released, so I don’t get frustrated about that sort of stuff. As I mentioned earlier, I’m on a limited budget when it comes to movies, so I carefull choose what movies I’ll be seeing well in advance. Going to the movies is never an  impulse event in our house, where we’re just looking for something to do on a Friday night.

July – None of the rest of these movies have trailers yet, so except for Valerian, I haven’t decided if I’ll see them.

Valerian and the City of 1000 Planets – Looks like fun.

Spiderman:Homecoming – Hmmm…maybe. I like the little guy whose playing him and Zendaya is in it, although I have since heard she’s not playing Mary Jane. I need to see a trailer before I commit.

War for the Planet of the Apes – I haven’t watched any of the others movies, so I’m not gonna start with this one.

The Dark Tower –  Well, duh! I’ve got to support my precious cinnamon bun, Idris Elba.

August

Alien Covenant – No trailer, no commitment.

CHiPS – I remember watching the Hell out of this  TV show as a child. Even then, it was  obvious, that the motorcycles were the stars of the show. I remember othing at all about the human cast, but I think there was a woman in there somewhere, though.

This is by no means a complete list. I”ll have more though, as more trailers are released.

Luke Cage: Shouting Out

There’s gonna be some spoilers here, just like  all the Luke Cage stuff I post. Lots and lots of spoilers. So if you haven’t watched the series, but plan to, read at your own risk.

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The opening credits  reminded me  of the legend of John Henry, as images of city buildings are transposed over the muscular body of Luke Cage. They’re also in keeping with the general aesthetic of the Netflix MCU  opening credits. The plot itself is a typical MCU tv series plot. You have a protagonist who isn’t looking to be a hero because of some past betrayal or trauma, the nemesis who is personal to the hero and wants to take him or her down, various side characters the hero might have to save or become deeply important to them during the series run, the hero becomes increasingly endangered, the eventual takedown of their nemesis, usually during a big fight scene. 

It’s a typical MCU plot. But it’s the stuff layered over this basic plot, the characterizations, and background scenery, that makes Luke Cage extraordinary for Marvel. We get sounds and images not seen in any of the other MCU projects. For example:

Luke Cage is a reader. (I haven’t read too much about the literary mentions in this  series, but I  have read most of the authors mentioned in the show, and was hoping for some articles on the subject.) We see Luke reading in the barbershop in which he works. Walter Mosely, Donald Goines, and  Chester Himes all get shoututs while Luke helps Pop at his barbershop, which is a fitting base of operations for him, as such shops (beauty parlours for the women) are often the cornerstones, and information warehouses, for a neighborhood.

 Pops is partial to the vigilante, Kenyatta, created by Donald Goines, while Luke prefers the characters of  Chester Himes, and we can see him reading one of Walter Mosley’s books in this opening scene, when he mentions he’s a fan of Easy Rawlings, the character from Devil in a Blue Dress. Later, he mentions Michael Connelly’s Harry Bosch. All of these writers specialize in writing great American hero thrillers, involving Detectives, and various independents, fighting corrupt systems. Basically they’re heroic power fantasies, like comic books but without the superpowers and costumes, and the show does have the flavor of such novels, and contains plot points right out of a few of them. 

Contrast Luke’s reading material with Cottonmouth’s and Diamondback’s influences, neither of whom we see doing a lot of reading. He and Diamondback are fans of Green’s 48 Laws of Power, with several mentions of the movie, New Jack City, which was also about a Black man making criminal power plays in his neighborhood. I’ve  read Robert Green, and no, it is not an instruction manual on how to live, any  more than Machiavelli ‘s The Prince . It’s a meant to be a manual about how to recognize when and what power tactics are being used against you. A lot of young men use it as a manual on how to be a better criminal, but  its mostly meant as a way to recognize political corruption, not how to do it. But it’s very popular amongst a certain class of powerless, young, black men, who seek knowledge, and guidance, but don’t have anyone in their life to give them those things. That Diamondback was a fan of that book wasn’t the least surprising to me. 

In fact, I was able to predict a lot of the actions of most of the criminals in the series because a lot of their choices come right out of those books. (Also, I must be pretty criminal minded because a lot of their actions make sense within the idea of impersonal criminal activity.) From who to kill, to who to leave alive, and why. From who to betray, to immediate alliances. The only character whose actions I couldn’t predict were Diamondback’s because he had  deeply personal daddy issues, and was most likely insane. (This series version of The Joker.)

Chess gets referenced a lot in the show, but there are other types of game players.Pops has a permanent chess board set up in the shop and Turk mentions playing in the park. (Chess playing for black people is a little different activity, and a tradition to play it in the park, in NY.)  For contrast look at how Mariah plays the game, vs. how Diamondback plays it. Mariah is always several moves ahead of everyone and  is a total natural. She likes to disguise her moves as something else, and has a focused vision of her future. She is a natural Queen. (The opposing Queen would be Misty, with her nearly supernatural ability to overview and  reconstruct a crime scene). Diamondback is unsubtle and direct, and  most of the chess players (like Shades) are totally stymied by his actions. They think Diamondback is playing chess, when he’s playing something else, ( Hungry Hungry Hippos or gob knows what.)

As for musical references, Luke seems to like Jazz, and old school hip hop from back inna day, (although it’s not unusual for us to have very wide ranging tastes in music, as most of us grow up listening to, and adopting, some of our parents musical tastes, as I did.)  Method Man makes an appearance later in the series, spitting fire about Luke, over the local radio station. The local radio station is also a classic of the socially conscious black movie, (think The Warriors, Do the Right Thing, The Get Down). I’m from the Midwest and  we have that one radio station that everybody in the neighborhood listens to, along with our own homegrown rap stars. (If you’re a fan of Bone Thugs, then you know where I hang.) If you’re a fan of Gang Starr,  then you also know that the series titles are all titles of their songs. I’m not a Gang Starr fan, though. 

Cottonmouth seems  to be a fan of 90s rap. He has a huge poster of Biggie Smalls on the wall of his office, and mentions Tupac and New Jack City. Later he invites Biggie’s wife, Faith Evans to sing in his club, which is only fitting. My favorite stage entertainer was the dapper,  Jidenna, who sang Long Live the Chief. It’s one of my favorite songs and scenes. 

I’m not actually a huge rap music fan, though. I know enough to get by and hold a conversation. I recognized music from The Wu Tang Clan, Tupac, and Public Enemy, but I probably missed about half the musical references. Down below are links clocking all of the biggest musical, and comic book moments, in the series.

Later, we get a little more old school, mellower music, like The Stylistics’ People Make the World Go Round, which is one of my favorite songs. And when Mariah takes over Cottonmouth’s club, we can see she prefers classics  like, The Delfonics (actually Cottonmouth was watching them rehearse). Mariah manages to hire Susan Jones and The Dap Kings, which is one of my favorite retro-groups. She name drops some of her favorite Jazz artists, as does Pop, earlier in the show.

The entire series is basically a love letter to the entirety of Black culture., and the references come fast and furious. It’s almost impossible to catch all of them.  There were some Jazz shoutouts but since I’m not a huge Jazz listener, outside of the biggies, I can’t speak deeply on that at all, but a lot of the music in the series I grew up listening to, and is part of the background story of my life. The producer, Cheo Hodari-Coker, must be in my age range because a lot of the music had resonance for me, and I’m not even a huge rap music fan, like that. I’m pretty sure there were lots of musical references I didn’t  catch. 

On the other hand, I caught most of the comic book references. From Pop calling Luke “Power Man”, as he was called in the books, to Misty pulling down a poster for martial arts training, that was put up by her future partner, Colleen Wing, who will be making her debut in the Iron Fist series. From the mentions of The Incident (the Chitauri invasion in The Avengers), to Diamondback’s outfit, which is a callback to his look in the comic books, to Luke’s headband, and bracelets during the experiment where he got his powers, to Misty Knight’s red outfit, and blowout at the end  of the series, reminiscent of her full out ‘do in the comic books, this series is full of comic book love. 

And most importantly, no Stan Lee cameo.

Here’s a list of the comic book references:

Did ‘Luke Cage’ Break Netflix? Outage Leaves Saturday Bingers In Dark
Here’s a rundown of the most important musical references by episode:

Marvel’s ‘Luke Cage’: Every important musical moment

*Please note these links contain spoilers, and that the comments for these websites are not safe for black people to be reading because there’s going to be all manner of white male nonsense in them. Don’t bother to read them if you have a low tolerance for racial foolishness. (Foolishness which the klandom has already gotten started engaging in.)

 

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:

Random Tumblr Antics 2

*This person hit the nail right on the head. I had been wondering why out of all the female Ghostbusters, that it was Leslie who got attacked. This man is right in that the a**holes who came after her, thought they could get away with attacking, what they thought, was the weakest link, the one person that no one would defend or care about. They didn’t plan that Black women would stan for Leslie, the way we  did. Their mistake was in thinking no one would have each her back, because they perceive the rift between Black and White women to be a rift between ALL women. I’m so proud of black women for doing this.

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*I laughed too hard at this one. Its so true, but  its still a little confusing how I would die, as a member of several different fandoms

iprayforangels

Fandoms by how they’d die in a zombie Apocalypse

In The Flesh: first to go, tried to befriend the zombies

Welcome to Nightvale: second to go, purposefully became zombies

Sherlock: got fed to zombies by other fandoms for being a know it all prick all the time

Doctor Who: caught and eaten by the Hannibal fandom during an argument among themselves

Torchwood: died avenging Doctor Who fandom’s death

Hannibal: mistaken for zombies while eating someone and killed by Supernatural fandom

Marvel: dies being unnecessarily heroic

DC: dies trying to prove they could survive the thing Marvel died doing

Homestuck: sacrificed to hoard as a distraction

Star Wars: killed by Star Trek in the midst of peace negotiations

Star Trek: killed by one of their own, sick of how much everyone hates Voyager

Harry Potter: eaten by zombie after they attempted to defend themselves with a spell

Supernatural: almost survived the whole thing before sacrificing themselves under the belief they’d come back

Walking Dead: survived the whole thing

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*What happens with a shallow reading of Civil War is that Tony looks like a sympathetic character.

He isn’t.

Once you look  beneath the surface of the movie you understand that Tony comes across as a first-class dick.

These guys looked beneath the surface. And what catalyzed them apparently, was that scene I mentioned in a similar post, where Tony strikes out at my boy Sam, for Vision’s mistake. They caught a little bit more than I did, because at no point afterward does Tony chastise Vision for what happened to Rhodey, (I was expecting that, too.)

Don’t get me wrong, I’m still crazy about Civil War but Tony is not the good guy in this movie and is gettin’ no love from me. I liked him alright in Iron Man 3, but in Civil War, Tony is one of is a bad guy.

mcufandomhatespeopleofcolor queerlaurabarton

desiree-rodriguez:

lexrambeau:

It’s been months and I’m still not over tony blasting sam when he was just trying to help after rhodey fell, but giving vision no type of slack for being the one to miss his shot. rhodey is paralyzed because vision wasn’t paying any fucking attention to what he was doing. in the hospital scene tony doesn’t even look like he’s mad at vision and in the end of the movie we don’t even get to see rhodey show any emotions about his new condition like the narrative still tries to make us feel bad for tony even though rhodey is sitting there fucking paralyzed.

This was a fundemental problem with the movie. Rhodey wasn’t a character in that moment, he was a plot device to further make the audience feel bad for Tony (similar to how he recent death in Civil War II was a plot device to instigate the “war” between Carol and Tony). Tony’s story in Civil War, I feel, can be summed up as “please feel bad for him” so that the audience wouldn’t turn on him for opposing Steve in his own movie. Rhodey suffered because of this.

He was reduced to a shock value moment where he was shot down and paralyzed so that the audience would have yet another reason to feel bad for Tony Stark. There’s next to no follow up for this except for Tony’s perspective on the course of events and the fact he doesn’t even hold the person responsible (Vision) responsible for it because the movie is so concerned with half developing the romance between Wanda and Vision and didn’t want to make Vision the bad guy.

So Sam pays the price (by getting shot out of the blue by Tony for doing nothing wrong) to showcase just how upset Tony is, and Rhodey pays the price to provide one more thing for the audience to pity Tony for. It’s extremely frustrating that two good and under utilized black characters were essentially used to further the emotional story of a white character.

Source: lexrambeau
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*I spoke about Nadiya’s win,  in the British Baking Show, in an earlier post. I love this woman. She is so charming and talented. She has moved on, since then, to writing cookbooks for adults and children, and she is soon to have her own television show called, get this: “The Chronicles of Nadiya”!
Isn’t that cute? 
I’m so proud of her.
 mediumlysocial: “A hijab-wearing Muslimah headlining a show in a primetime slot on BBC One is so so bloody awesome. Such a warm, genuine and lovely woman too. Chronicles of Nadiya is only the best comfort-viewing ever. Pumpkin cake and all. – is now...

mediumlysocial:

A hijab-wearing Muslimah headlining a show in a primetime slot on BBC One is so so bloody awesome. Such a warm, genuine and lovely woman too. Chronicles of Nadiya is only the best comfort-viewing ever. Pumpkin cake and all.

– is now unavailable Wednesday nights –

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 Just funny pictures from Tumblr. The irony of Obama blaming himself for his  own easily solved cookie problem …
image

 

Yeah, this…

 

*Here, have some more Obama: The caption for this would be, Representation Matters!

the-movemnt:

In other words: representation f*cking matters. Michelle went on to name the one TV show that changed her world view as a child.

follow @the-movemnt

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On a related note about representation:

reverseracism kingdomheartsddd

kingdomheartsddd:

White people act like people of color made themselves into stereotypes, as if they didn’t fabricate, spread these lies, and sabotage groups of people to make these lies “true” lmao. Disprove stereotypes my ass. They’re never been proven. They’re based on lies. Maybe y’all should stop being gullible pieces of crap just to make yourselves feel superior.

We shouldn’t have to tip toe around, pretend to be something we’re not, or teach our children to act a certain way just because y’all are liars, and on top of that, won’t let go of your willfully ignorant views.

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Bigsky is now my new favorite poster. When you have other White people coming for ya’, ya’ know you need to fix your shit.

bigskydreaming

Attention fellow white people.

Members of another race feeling empowered by a flag or other symbol that doesn’t include us isn’t racism.

Us acting like there’s something wrong with anything that does not by default include us is, in fact, racism.

Stop being butthurt every time the world doesn’t revolve around us, that is LITERALLY the entire problem.

bigskydreaming
stephanemiroux

thatdiabolicalfeminist:

Telling oppressed people they can’t hate their oppressors is tantamount to saying they can’t be angry about their oppression or have an emotional reaction to their trauma.

It’s an insistence that they never require accountability from those perpetuating oppression.

It’s a stark demand that they centre the feelings of the oppressor group above their own emotional needs.

Stop telling victims not to hate their bullies and start telling bullies to back off. Because when you tell the victims that they need to respect the bully’s feelings more than their own? You become a bully too.

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 *This has been this way since before the Civil War, when rich White men created White supremacy to keep other White people in line. White supremacy wasn’t necessarily created to keep slaves in line (that was just one of its many purposes), we were already where rich people wanted us to be: enslaved.  But the wealthy also needed a way to keep from being overpowered by poor whites who had left their home countries, fleeing the wealthy people who kept them down there, and who might decide to team up with the slaves to overturn the status quo, here.

One way to hold off the rebellions, that occurred in other countries, was to get poor White people to do the work of keeping themselves down, by taking  the wealthy White men’s side, against people they considered  lower on the totem pole than them: Blacks, Natives, and Mexicans.

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 People from impoverished countries have enough of an incentive to succeed in the world : Not wanting to be poor!

And the final commentor makes a Hell of a point.

theonlyleftydesk:

onyourtongue:

a-tribe-called-tress:

thingstolovefor:

White girls realizing white isn’t supreme after all. #Love it!

The fact that she basically said that they look like men…😒😒😒

They thought way too highly of themselves and finally stepped out of their mediocre environments to realise they’re not all that good.. So they end up blaming their poor performance on 3 amazing and hardworking African athletes.

Step your pussy up.

It’s ironic how white people have literally held black people back for so long that they really convinced themselves they’re naturally better than us, and they STILL hold us back at every chance and cheat us and give themselves unfair advantages

And we–even after all the stumbling blocks and unnecessary hurdles they put in front of us–we are STILL as good as they are

And without those hurdles we are BETTER because we always have to try harder just to get ANYTHING.

(This is what happens when you don’t let your competitors enter the race AT ALL for years, and you get complacent and convince yourself you MUST BE the best. And then the training wheels come off and you have to face someone who has had to work ten times as hard to get to where you are and you CANNOT COPE.)

Let’s repeat that last one:

(This is what happens when you don’t let your competitors enter the race AT ALL for years, and you get complacent and convince yourself you MUST BE the best. And then the training wheels come off and you have to face someone who has had to work ten times as hard to get to where you are and you CANNOT COPE.)

 

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*Here’s some Misty Knight fax:

ART IMITATING (BLACK WOMEN IN) LIFE: MISTY KNIGHT’S GLOW UP AND BLACK LOVE ON TOP

Tumblr Discussions: On Black Characters

 

I have been wondering how White fans are going to approach those narratives where White people aren’t prominently displayed. Shows like Luke Cage and movies like Black Panther are not going to be a  showcase for  White people or their narratives. Will  they just ignore them as they do so much of the Indie stuff that prominently features Black people? Insert their White favorites, as is usually done?

I single out Black people because Fandom doesn’t seem to have as many problems writing and shipping Asian characters. They don’t do it very often, and aren’t much good at it, but it does get done. As shown in some of the stats below, they will completely ignore Black characters, or characters who cannot pass for white, even when those are primary characters in the narrative. The Force Awakens is a perfect example, where fandom would seem to prefer to ship Rey with the villain who tortured her in the story, than ship her with Finn, one of the narrative’s heroes.

I was also shocked at how far down Korasami was on the list. I was under the apprehension that fans were clamoring for strong female representation, and I thought Legend of Korra would be at the top of the list for that, but I was wrong, but now, I’m not wondering too hard, why.

Anyway these are the discussions being had on Twitter and Tumblr about Black fandom expectations about White fans of the *MCU and fandom in general. *(Marvel Cinematic Universe)

*If this is how fans are treating the Black men in the MCU, I don’t wanna see how they’re going to treat Misty knight when she appears. Will they just ignore her? Ship her with their White fave? Write her as every worst stereotype of Black women? We’ll see.

As for Nick Fury’s narrative in fandom, I’ve noticed that  when fans can’t find a role for a Black character, within canon, that is useful to the White characters, they will often write that character as a villain. This is the reason you see Nick Fury written as either, a screaming caricature of Samuel L Jackson, or as a bad guy, even when he commits the same actions as their woobified favorites like Tony Stark.

karnythia angelsscream

ororosmunroe:

ororosmunroe:

Is it so impossible for white fandom to imagine a place where they are not in a place of prominence? Where white people are either not there or barely existent. Where they are not the center of attention?

Wakanda is the only place where were white imperialism has not touched. Where white colonialism isn’t a thing. If you can only get into the idea of Wakanda if you insert a yt fav to “normalize” it….that says a lot about you tbh.

This is the point of the post where you self reflect and see why shoe horning a white face into a rare, completely black space is deeply f-ed up.

Also, T’challa is not a bank for your yt waves to come to when they are low on cash and or accessories/gadgets. He is not here for you yt favs in any capacity. Stop trying to shoehorn him into an assistant/benefactor/serval role. It’s really uncomfortable, gross and racist.  I thought this was common sense but here we are.

Source: ororosmunroe
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First there was #Where’s Rhodey?

Then came Heimdall the Living Telescope and Nothing Else.

Then came Sam Wilson The Stucky Cheerleader and His Home For Wayward Whites.

Now there’s Sugar Daddy T’Challa.

If I see Gangleader/P-mp Daddy Luke Cage or Sassy Black Friend Misty Knight, I’m going off on MCU fandom and you all will owe me $5000 in reparations for every fic or headcanon y’all type up.

You forgot the canon backed #FuryLies.

But the point absolutely still stands.

Source:
nerdsagainstfandomracism diversehighfantasy

russianspacegeckosexparty asked:

I sure can’t WAIT to read all these white liberal think pieces by white MCU stans on why Wakanda is oppressive, misogynistic, backwards and harmful. They’ll talk endlessly about how the whole royal family thing is corrupt and be hyper critical about it, yet they’ve said nothing about Asgard and it’s royal family. They’ll say Wakanda is selfish for “hoarding” technology + not sharing it with the outside (read: White) world. Boy, this is gonna be a wild, migraine inducing ride

stitchmediamix answered:

*There’s gonna be white people in fandom who justify reducing T’Challa to a Sugar Daddy and Vibranium dispenser for Steve and other Whites by saying “Well in the comics, he designed the Quinjet for the Avengers so it’s totally plausible…”. The way they twist and exploit T’Challa’s noble, kind nature with stuff like “He’s a good, selfless guy so he’d do this!” to shout down rightfully angry black fans is gross and tiring.

I’ve been preparing for this – all of this – from the second that I first had confirmation that the Black Panther film was in the works. One thing I don’t think most non-black members get is that from the moment that a Black character gets introduced, Black fans start worrying. They see “T’challa takes care of the Avengers” as a positive because it’s what they want from him, not bothering to look at the history of how Black characters and people have regularly been forced into playing “nanny” positions for white characters and people.

So from the moment that I was first told “Hey, just so you know, Black Panther willbe a thing,” I knew that things would get bad. They would get creepy. Fans would pant after T’challa’s BBC the way they did with every single Black character ni fandom as if Black men are only

Because we’d already been through fandom looking at Sam and seeing a psychologist, a secret HYDRA agent, or someone who exists only to serve and protect the white Avengers because they’re freaking TODDLERS.

We’d already been through #NickFuryLies being a major point of characterization in the fandom despite the fact that Nick is not even remotely required to spill his entire plans to the kind of untrustworthy Avengers who had proven over multiple times that they were incapable of being responsible.

We’d already seen how fandom literally erased Rhodey from Tony’s life becauseSteve (who Tony doesn’t even like half the time) is somehow a better friend than the man that has been with Tony for most of his life and who knows him better than he knows himself.

So really, Black fans knew that shit was going to get ugly when T’challa was officially introduced to the MCU.

And okay, I think a really huge sign that these T’challa “fans” who are slotting him into the Sugar Daddy role for the avengers really don’t understand anything about his characterization in any film/show/comic he’s been in.

Like you said, they’re all “he’s so kind and selfless so of course he’d drop a couple billion bucks on making sure the Avengers have the best toys” when part of what makes T’challa such a great character is how flawed he can be.

He can be kind and is a king, but he’s also human. Which means making mistakes and making decisions that are more selfish than selfless. But fandom is too busy salivating over the idea that the richest man in the MCU can now be at the beck and call of their white favorites to care that his actual personality isn’t a damn think like the Sugar Daddy they’re dead set on turning him into.

And let’s be very real here: on no level in any universe has T’challa ever flung money at the Avengers because it was “the right thing to do” and he’s certainly not going to start here. Yeah, T’challa has Bucky literally chilling in Wakanda, but that doesn’t mean that suddenly, the country he and his ancestors have kept safe and secluded for centuries to protect them from colonialization and whiteness is suddenly going to lay out the welcome mat for the Avengers and their assorted family members.

Fandom doesn’t get that what they’re doing is wrong with these AUs and the passive aggressive posts and the super shitty characterization they slap on T’challa because they don’t want to get it. They want to write their super racist, colonialism-worshiping AUs without people calling them on their shit. They want to reduce Black men to what’s between their legs without being criticized.

You know… because it’s just fandom.

That’s where you get the willful “oh Black Panther is for everyone, stop segregating” bs you see every time a Black fan brings up that Black Panther and T’challa have a special and specific place in Black nerd history and hearts.

I don’t think non-Black fans realize how important T’challa and Wakanda are to Black comic fans across the diaspora and how Black fans are sick to death of fandom ’s fucked up characterizations for Black characters, but they’re going to learn.

Source: stitchmediamix Antiblackness marvel cinematic universe Marvel Comicsfandom racism Black Panther racism in fandom Meta Long Post Reblog Mod P.

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One of the really sad things pointed out to me on Tumblr was that even when Hollywood and television is being diverse, and giving fandom an opportunity to view the narrative through the eyes of a PoC, fandom chooses not to do so, often erasing the PoC from the narrative, and focusing on the ANY White characters who happen to be available, even if those characters are the most minor villains like Hux (from SWTFA).

I still believe the majority of fanfiction writers are young White women, a certain contingent of whom, are absolutely insistent that there be a White gay romance in everything, even to the point of female erasure ,which is interesting , considering that this is the exact same fandom that insists it wants strong female characters. Even members of the gay community have remarked about the fetishization of gay men in these narratives. 

This is also disturbing becasue it points to a complete lack of imagination as fans follow a formula for writing these stories. Its a fill-in-the-blanks form of writing, that I personally dislike. They’ve been following this same formula since the the invention of Kirk/Spock, and seem loathe to movie themselves from it. Pretty much all it takes for any show or movie to get shipped is to have two White men in it, but making them gay isn’t as progressive as fanfiction writers would have everyone believe, since they seem to want to do so to the exclusion of all the other characters in the narrative. And then there’s this:

http://www.vox.com/2016/8/7/11950648/fandom-shipping-social-justice-ideological-warfare

Its gotten to the point where fans are demanding from the show’s creators, that their particular White male ships be made canon, even in shows that have canon gay characters in them, like Teen Wolf. In the case of Teen Wolf, the gay character is Black, so I find it interesting that fans don’t want to see him in a relationship, but they will demand that two White males, Derek (now off the show) and Stiles (who was under age), be shipped by the creators, (which erases Scott, who is played by a Latino actor, from the narrative entirely.) 

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diversehighfantasy terresdebrume

Fandom’s Race Problem and the AO3 Ship Stats

terresdebrume:

diversehighfantasy:

generalsmol:

diversehighfantasy:

centrumlumina:

After four years working on my AO3 Ship Stats project, and having previously addressed issues of misogyny in this data set, I feel like it’s past time to talk about the elephant in the room:

Fandom is kinda racist.

(Hold on folks, this is going to be a long one… If you don’t want to read all the details, skip to ‘Conclusions’ at the end.)

Keep reading

Read More Now! Read More Now! Read More Now! Read More Now!

The extra breakdowns (as opposed to just saying x% are POC) are appreciated. I saw the POC stats rise last time, and it very much showed favor to POC who are perceived as white (and are very rarely even part black). At that point, further breakdown along racial lines is necessary. I saw people patting themselves on the back for meeting an acceptable percentage of POC rep, but no one talked about how only 1.5% (iirc) was Black.

And this year’s stats show 1.5% Black as well (0.5% if you exclude biracial Black people). FinnPoe may have made the top 20 (ranked 94 overall), but that is a terrible, embarassing percentage that shows that antiblack sentiment is strong in fandom, and that, at least as far as shipping trends go, it’s not getting better.

While I think this is an incredible breakdown and brings up some valid problems, I think it is also important to point out that fandoms aren’t actually the only factor in these statistics. The results you are seeing are not only a result of fandom choice, but also of the media’s under-representation of POC, especially POC who are very visibly so. There are less characters, which means there are less possibilities for shipping.

I’m not denying that there’s racism, but keep in mind that you’re looking at a system, not an isolated group.

And yet even when a fandom represents a movie or show with people of color at the forefront, white characters are preferred by fandom for shipping, again and again. The Force Awakens is a textbook example of this, as are Teen Wolf and The Walking Dead. Quite a few of the all-white top ships sideline people of color, and those people of color are overwhelmingly Black (these include Guinevere in Merlin, Michonne in TWD, Jimmy in Supergirl, Uhura in the new Star Trek Movies, and Iris West, who is sidelined in the ‘16 Top 100 by a character perceived as white by fandom played by an actor of African descent).

As long as fandom minimizes the characters of color it’s given, fandom will have to face their contribution to the problem, and not deflect blame on the industry. At this point, let’s be real, media is trying a lot harder to be inclusive than fandom is.

Also (as a white fan) I feel like fandom is capable of putting a lot of effort into creating a character when there isn’t one already made (see the rise of Kylo/Hux or Phil Freaking Coulson who got such a fandom he got un-killed and then got his own TV show).

I mean like. Yeah, there’s a lot of reason why less representation (and bad representation) influence stats but also fandom (and specifically white fandom, I feel) needs to face up to the differences between the ways they treat white (often male, but not only) characters and the way they treat characters of color :/

Definitely true. Fandom will fixate on minor white characters and create rich backstories for them, but when it comes to minor characters of color, especially if they’re Black, the interest isn’t there. (Minor non-Black CoC such as Poe Dameron occasionally do get this treatment.)

It doesn’t matter how much potential the minor character has. Some of my favorite characters are minor, underutilized Black characters like Milo in Being Human (UK) – an ideal “blank slate” character whose mysterious backstory was only hinted at in canon. It’s a small fandom to start with, but the number of fans who recognize Milo’s potential is minuscule.

Basically, any white male character – major, minor, bad or good – is seen as having value on some level. Black characters, not so much.

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finnnorgana irisvwest

localgaysian:

i love how white people assume that people of color have to overanalyze media to find its racism. “just enjoy it!” they say, like we’re not going to notice a portrayal of our “inferiority” being rubbed in our face. “i miss the good old days when social justice warriors didn’t ruin every movie/tv show ever,” like pointing out racism ruins the media and not the racism itself. it’s the epitome of white privilege.

Source: localgaysianmmmhmm
I’ll have more on this subject later. Its depressing and disheartening to know this.

The Woobification of Tony Stark

The Woobification of Tony Stark

tumblr_inline_o40b2aQ4Ux1ref7c7_500

I think I mught turn this into a series on the woobification of problematic characters in fanfiction. Now in case you dont read fanfiction or dont know what it means “woobification” is the watering down , or  “chibification, of an antogonist, or problematic character from TV shows and movies. From the Fanlore Wikipedia definition: Woobie Synonyms: woobify, woobifie See also: Weepy Uke Syndrome,…

View On WordPress

The Woobification of Tony Stark

I think I mught turn this into a series on the woobification of problematic characters in fanfiction. Now in case you dont read fanfiction or dont know what it means “woobification” is the watering down , or  “chibification, of an antogonist, or problematic character from TV shows and movies.

From the Fanlore Wikipedia definition:

Woobie

Synonyms: woobify, woobifie
See also: Weepy Uke Syndrome, Manpain, wangst
Click here for related articles on Fanlore.

A woobie is a beloved fannish character (often a BSO) who evokes in fans the desire to wrap him (usually him[1]) up in a blanket and cuddle him and comfort him.[2] If a character is hard-working, and/or endures difficult circumstances bravely, and/or is often at the “h” end of the H/Cspectrum, odds are good that fans consider him a woobie.

Woobies, especially if they’re the smaller/shorter member of a slashpairing, have a higher risk of becoming feminized and/or infantilized. In fact, some people within fandom think that the process of woobification equates to infantilization and/or feminization of a male character.

A term of endearment (like “baby); someone who is so cute/sad/adorable you want to hug and comfort them.
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So, I’m going to reprint this post in its entirety. Its a very long one, but if  you wish to read  the original, please go the Tumblr where this was being discussed. For the record, I agree that Tony should not be woobified at the expense of the poc, in the movies. I don’t actually have a problem with woobification, because I do have some understanding why its done, but when you have to break down another character to do it, especially a moc, like Rhodey, that’s just racist and wrong:
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Tony Stark Needs A Hug

sunwukxng:

bigskydreaming:

peardita:

jenniferrpovey:

mf-luder-xf:

jenniferrpovey:

femme-werewolf:

donc-desole:

drnerdlove:

Literally all the conflicts in the Marvel Cinematic Universe from 2001 on could’ve been avoided if somebody’d give Tony Stark a hug.

Cracked recently posted an article about plot points the MCU would never go into and brings up the fact that Tony Stark has PTSD and nobody seems to care.

This is true and a good point. But I don’t think it really goes far enough. The author talks about Tony’s reactions and behavior in Iron Man 3 after the battle for New York… and that, I think is where he gets it wrong.

Tony’s been dealing with PTSD since the midpoint of the first Iron Man movie. Y’know, when his convoy was attacked, soldiers died all around him, he was kidnapped by terrorists, watched a man he admired die in his arms and then had to kill a whole bunch of folks to escape.

It’s pretty obvious by the time he has his first post-release press conference that he is completely and utterly fucked up by the experience. His erratic behavior and abrupt changes in behavior? All part of what’s going on… and this leads directly into damn near every major event in the MCU.

Everything Tony has done has been to be proactive. He’s trying to protect people from harm before it happens. Thus the Iron Man and War Machine suits. Thus the Iron Legion. Thus Ultron. Thus SHIELD’s preemptive strike initiative. Thus the Sakovia Accords.

Because all Tony wants to do is make sure nobody gets hurt – including (and especially) him.

I mean, let’s look at things here. Tony has grown up believing that everybody he loves is going to leave him. His parents die when he’s 19. Jarvis – who practically raised him thanks to his absentee father – died before that. Ho Yinsen – a scientist that Tony admires – dies as Tony is trying to rescue him. Obidiah Stane – another father figure to Tony – betrays him and tries to murder him.

Tony has spent his entire life losing people he loves and now he’s trying to save everybody else. Small wonder that his power is building more and more elaborate suits of armor.

But everyone keeps brushing it off as Tony being Tony. By Iron Man 2, it’s pretty clear he’s not sleeping and the only thing that’s keeping him together is being TONY STARK the image, not the man. His erratic behavior isn’t just that he’s being poisoned by his arc reactor, it’s that he can’t handle the guilt and panic and pain of everything he’s gone through. But everybody keeps calling him a fuckup and an asshole, even people who should know better. James Rhodes, Nick Fury and Phil Coulson should recognize that a civilian who’s gone through what Tony has is going to need some serious help.

But then comes The Avengers. And the Battle for New York. And while Tony’s able to process misfits of science like The Hulk and Captain America, the Battle for New York blows his fucking mind away. Now he finds out a) aliens are real, b) there are billions of them, c) they want to murder us all and d) Tony only barely stopped them and that was mostly by luck.

So by the time Iron Man 3 rolls around, his psyche is mashed potatoes. He’s working like a madman because he knows what’s out there and he’s desperate to save the people he loves.

And then the Mandarin nearly blows up two of the people he cares for most in the world: Happy and Pepper.

And then he meets two more people his company’s weapons have destroyed.

And then the Scarlet Witch shows him a vision of all his friends have been killed and it’s his fault because he should have been able to stop it

So what does he do? He turns to the only other person on the Avengers who can understand his trauma – Bruce – and tries to buildanother, bigger suit of armor, one that can protect the entire planet. And then watches as JARVIS dies in front of him. JARVIS – the last hold he had on the closest thing he had to a father.

And then in Civil War, he gets his face rubbed in his failures again. Look, here’s someone else you couldn’t save! This is YOUR FAULT Tony, you asshole!

Of course, by this point, he’s trying to do some self-directed therapy… and it’s pointing in the wrong direction. He’s trying to deal with his relationship to his father and not that he’s gone through shit that makes people break down. And when General Ross comes and says “Ok, here’s what you need to do to protect people and make sure you’re doing the right thing” of course he jumps at it. This is what he’s been trying to do over and over and over again since built that suit IN A CAVE. FROM SCRAPS! It’s why he’s building suit of armor after suit of armor.

And everyone thinks he’s an asshole.

Part of the problem is that people keep shaming him and yelling at him, as though that’s going to get him into therapy. You know what he actually needs? He needs a friend. Someone to ask him “are you ok?” and suggest that maybe doing this thing might help him. Nobody does though. Even Falcon – who is shown in Winter Soldier to be helping soldiers process PTSD and the scars of war – doesn’t seem to notice or care.

Literally the only person who’s remotely sympathetic to him? A little kid. Who tells him “Hey, you’re an engineer. Go build stuff.” Not what he really needs to do but hey, it’s the first person to take his pain seriously and fuck why not?

Yeah, he’s abrasive and pushes people away. Small wonder: everyone he loves either dies, leaves him or betrays him. Even Cap – Captain fucking America, who he both loves and resents because Daddy loved Rogers more than he loved Tony – has betrayed him. Has sided with the man who… well, spoilers.

He keeps people at arms length because he’s afraid to get hurt again. But he cares. He cares more than he can let himself admit. And all he wants to do is save people.

Tony Stark needs a hug and someone to ask “Hey, you ok?”

Thank you! Thank you op for this.  Somebody gets it.

I’m not actually Team Cap. I am actually Team Can Everyone Get Some Good Therapy, a Warm Blanket, and a Puppy.

I’m Team Why Didn’t Somebody Knock Their Heads Together And Make Them Both Grow Up.

But yeah, Tony has major issues.

And…you know…so does Steve.

And they love each other too much NOT to end up hurting each other.

Tony doesn’t have friends. He has employees. Even Pepper is as much employee as girlfriend. (I’m doing a full analysis of the movie on my blogspot blog later). Rhodes…not quite a friend.

Steve is the only person Tony treats as an equal. Steve was the one person who could help him, and he didn’t. Why? Because Tony hid the way he was falling apart from him. Because Steve has his own issues, because Steve has a fair dose of PTSD too.

So, yeah…

I’m sorry, how is Rhodey not quite a friend? He’s been the most consistent character in Tony’s life as shown in MCU. Tony is very clear Rhodey is his best friend.

Let me try and explain this better.

Yes, Tony is very fond of Rhodey, but Rhodey is where he is because of Tony. There’s a dependence there that keeps them from being fully equal.

The original post is an entire mess and the fact that it apparently comes from some kind of advice columnist makes it worse but others are already covering that so I won’t go there (x).

But this. Did I just read this insulting nonsense with my own two eyes in the year 2016.

Rhodey is where he is because of Tony

Are you entirely serious with me right now? I mean obviously you are, and I won’t bother asking how someone can ignore all of the many accomplishments of a character spread across 5 movies because we all know why. But for everyone else out there who ignoring/unable to see Rhodey’s accomplishments/his deep friendship with Tony, let’s break it down:

-they met at MIT and have been best friends for over 30 years. Did Rhodey get into MIT because of Tony? I don’t think so

-Rhodey is an Air Force fighter pilot, a full bird Colonel (x) and has flown 138 combat missions (as of CACW). Is any of that due to Tony? Hell no.

-He works in Air Force Weapons Development (can’t remember the exact title off the top of my head) which means he has at least a Masters degree, probably in some kind of rocket propulsion/engineering (x). Would the Air Force have given him that job if he wasn’t fully qualified? Hell no.

-In Iron Man 2 Tony stages a fight as a way of giving Rhodey the War Machine armor (we know Tony intended to do this because the suits can’t be used unless Tony codes them to you) but the fact that Rhodey is successful as War Machine is due entirely to his own piloting and combat skills.

-In many ways you could say Tony is dependent on Rhodey and wouldn’t be where he is without Rhodey’s help. Rhodey covers for Tony with the military. He covers for Tony with Congress. In IM2 he keeps covering for Tony so the military won’t come try to take Tony’s suits by force. Tony would be in a much more difficult position if he didn’t have Rhodey continually bailing him out.

-Tony also probably wouldn’t be alive without Rhodey. A deleted scene in IM1 shows that after 3 months of Tony being missing the military is ready to write Tony off as dead, but Rhodey refuses to quit looking for him, even if it means his own job is at risk. That’s why Rhodey was there in a helicopter, ready to rescue Tony when he escaped the Ten Rings, because Rhodey was already out there looking for him.

-Throughout the movies Rhodey repeatedly asks Tony if he’s okay and explicitly tells him he doesn’t have to do it on his own, Rhodey is there to help him (one of the many reasons the OP is bullshit.) Tony trusts Rhodey with his suits, Tony trusts Rhodey with his arc reactor (literally the only other person he will let touch it is Pepper) Tony trusts Rhodey with his life.

-I cannot even begin list all the examples of love and support and friendship between the two of them because there are so many. And the fact that that they have so much funand clearly find each other hilarious and take absolute joy from each other like if you can watch all the scenes that all these gifs come from (x) and not see how they are best friends who are so deeply important to each other …. I just don’t fuckin know what to tell you.

TL;DR Rhodey is super smart, super talented, got where he is through his own hard work and if you think he and Tony aren’t really friends and his success only comes through dependence on Tony, frankly that’s a really gross line of thinking and you should sit back and think about why the hell you are devaluing the accomplishments and relationships of a black character that badly.

All of this.

Plus:

OP, STOP ACTING LIKE SNARKY ENTITLED WHITE GUYS’ PAIN IS THE ONLY PAIN THAT MATTERS.

Nothing you said about Tony’s issues and what he needs is inaccurate. It’s just…you know…all of that literally applies to every other damn character in the Avengers franchise from Steve to Sam to Bucky to Wanda to T’Challa Bruce to Nat to so STOP SINGLING OUT THE STRAIGHT WHITE GUYS’ PAIN AS DEMANDING MORE ATTENTION/SIGNIFICANCE THAN EVERYONE ELSE’S THIS IS LITERALLY THE ENTIRE PROBLEM.

Sam: Combat vet who lost his best friend in the war and blames himself, has PTSD as well.

Bucky: Disabled, brainwashed, used as a mindless killing machine for literal decades by the very enemy he fought in WWII.

T’Challa: Watched his father die in front of him and had the responsibilities of an entire kingdom thrust on him less than a week ago and hasn’t had a chance to so much as stop and catch his breath since.

Wanda: Orphaned by weapons Tony helped create and sell, experimented on by Hydra, loses her brother and only remaining family in the last movie, distrusted and feared just for being what she is.

Rhodey: Combat vet, has flown and fought in more wartime missions than Sam and Steve combined, recovering from a potentially debilitating injury, the extent of which is still unknown.

Steve: Fought in WWII, seemingly watched his best friend die right in front of him, sacrifices himself in what he believes is an actual suicide mission (like literally the EXACT same move you’re singling out Tony for needing help for), frozen for seventy years and awakes to a world where there’s nothing familiar to hold on to, finds out the organization he’s been working for since waking up is fully corrupted by the enemies he fought in WWII.

Nat: Raised from childhood to be the perfect assassin, canonically is motivated primarily by guilt over all the things she’s done.

Clint: Mind-controlled by Loki to kill people for him, fight his friends and allies, and help inflict an alien invasion on his world.

Thor: Finds out the brother he’s known and loved his whole life secretly hated him all along and has since tried to kill him multiple times, his mom was murdered in his last movie.

Bruce: He’s the goddamn Hulk, need I say more.

The Vision: idfk, he’s like two, he’s got metaphysical teething issues or something

OP: But what about TONY, he has it so HARD you guys, he’s been through so much and he’s got no one to help him despite having more resources at his disposal than most of the other Avengers combined and his abrasive personality doesn’t have anything to do with his lack of a support system despite Civil War clarifying that it stemmed from long before his parents’ death and can’t be blamed on that initial trauma, no if we’re going to focus our attention on any one single character in need of hugs and love and support instead of acknowledging that all of them are in the same boat, Tony’s clearly the obvious choice for that!!!

…Disregarding the entire gigantic pile of festering shit that OP tried to feed us as objective and the most important thing, I’m still stuck on so many things about this post.

1) Tony Stark is literally not that important. To pin every single event happening on Tony because he didn’t receive a hug and everyone didn’t suppress their trauma to venerate and acknowledge Tony’s, is disingenuous and literally right off the bat demonstrates just how bullshit this entire thing is going to be. Your entire premise is flawed, and surely your analysis was as well.

And holy shit, was it ever.

2) You bring up Tony Stark’s PTSD as though he’s the only one battling mental illnesses, which is also disingenuous and false, so you lose points here. Tony’s not special.

3) “His erratic behavior and abrupt changes in behavior? All part of what’s going on… and this leads directly into damn near every major event in the MCU.”

LOL no. Tony Stark is not that important. You’re trying to bolster him up, make him a lynchpin in the entirety of the MCU as though it falls apart without him, or that any other plot cannot possibly be conceived or executed without the existence of Tony Stark. That’s bullshit. Tony is responsible for a lot of fuck ups, particularly Ultron, and he had the fucking idiocy and audacity to try again even though it fucked up colossally the first time which got them into that mess in the first place, and the only reason it didn’t implode in his face is because the plot bends over backwards for him. Sometimes the MCU does cater to Tony, but overall he is, nor will he ever be, the single most important character in the entirety of the MCU or the cause of “damn near every major event in the MCU”.

4) “Everything Tony has done has been to be proactive.”

LMAO. Vision’s creation was reactive to Ultron’s creation, the enforcing of the Sokovia Accords was reactive to his murder-by-proxy of all those humans when he created Ultron. Tony fucked up and is reactive, instead of proactive.

5) “Tony has spent his entire life losing people he loves”

SO?? SO??? SO HAS LITERALLY EVERYONE ELSE?? HE AIN’T SPECIAL. WHERE’S EVERYONE ELSE’S HUGS?

6) “But everyone keeps brushing it off as Tony being Tony. By Iron Man 2, it’s pretty clear he’s not sleeping and the only thing that’s keeping him together is being TONY STARK the image, not the man. His erratic behavior isn’t just that he’s being poisoned by his arc reactor, it’s that he can’t handle the guilt and panic and pain of everything he’s gone through. But everybody keeps calling him a fuckup and an asshole,even people who should know better. James Rhodes, Nick Fury and Phil Coulson should recognize that a civilian who’s gone through what Tony has is going to need some serious help.”

Oh gosh, where to even begin with this festering pile of filth? Pepper and Rhodey are constantly there for Tony, but he can’t even remember that Pepper’s allergic to strawberries. He’s self-absorbed, arrogant, condescending, an all-around fuckboy, and “everyone keeps brushing it off as Tony being Tony” should really be “Everyone, despite how big of a fuck up and asshole Tony is, still somehow manages to tolerate and support him when he rarely if ever extends the same support back”.

“He can’t handle the guilt and panic and pain of everything he’s gone through” LMAO THAT LITERALLY DOES NOT GIVE HIM A FREE PASS TO BE A FUCKING DOUCHE? HOW OFTEN HAS HE TAKEN PEPPER FOR GRANTED? RHODEY? EVERYONE ELSE? NATASHA WAS LITERALLY THE ONLY ORIGINAL AVENGER ON HIS FUCKING SIDE IN THE CIVIL WAR AND HE STILL CONDESCENDED TO HER AND DROVE HER AWAY. Theonly original avenger who sided with him, the only one who opted to support his bullshit that he had no stake in and would affect him in literally no fucking way because at the end of the day he’s still a rich, powerful, privileged piece of shit who acts as though he’s among the poor and disenfranchised that would be affected if the Avengers didn’t sign the Sokovia Accords. Tony is fundamentally wrong but Natasha supported him anyways, even though she has literally no reason to aside from wanting someone to be on Tony’s side, and when she’s there to support him, he talks shit to her and calls her a double agent and asks her what the fuck she knows. She even checks his ego for him, because Tony Stark, who doesn’t like to be handed things, can’t handle his own ego.

James, Nick, and Phil are not Tony’s lackeys. They don’t answer to Tony. They don’t work for him. They aren’t his emotional support. And James and Nick sure as shit aren’t his black little slaves to prop him up and treat his issues and prioritize him above themselves. Tony sure as shit doesn’t do it for them, and the connotation of two black men having to tend to the white man’s needs is fucking racist, just like you.

7) Okay honestly how did you not dislocate your entire vertebrae with this reach? Are you a contortionist, working with Ripley’s because I can’t believe this shit you’re making me read. Tony isn’t the only one who saw aliens. Tony didn’t break down and suddenly become unable to function when he saw aliens. Just like literally nobody else did. They all fought the Chitauri, and not a single damn thing was there to establish Tony couldn’t “process” the aliens unlike how he could process “science misfits” like Hulk and Captain America. I mean, for fuck’s sake, Tony literally met Asgardian gods. He fought an Asgardian god. You think he gives a shit aboutaliens? Tony stans will go to any length to woobify him and it’s quite frankly fucking embarrassing.

AND THE BIGGEST FUCKING BULLSHIT PART OF THIS: “d) Tony only barely stopped them and that was mostly by luck.”

Tony only barely stopped them?? Tony? Not the Avengers? Not literally everyone else on the squad? Only Tony stopped them? You inflate his importance and relevance far too much. I mean, I should’ve expected that when you said he’s responsible for every major event in the MCU, which is blatant bullshit, but to try and act as though Tony is the only one who managed to do anything and resolve the New York Invasion by himself…seriously, are you a contortionist? Can you show me how you twist and turn your way out of all these logical fallacies and false equivalences and omissions and all this other quite frankly mediocre analytical tools you’re not only using, but misusing?

8) “So by the time Iron Man 3 rolls around, his psyche is mashed potatoes.”

*rolls eyes loudly and cantankerously* Still doesn’t excuse all the bullshit, arrogance, and entitlement he exudes.

9) “He turns to the only other person on the Avengers who can understand his trauma – Bruce”

Yes, because literally no one else of the Avengers has gone through ridiculous amounts of trauma and tragic things. Nope. No one else. Only the two white guys. Only Tony and Bruce. Not even Steve, because to admit Steve has trauma is to invalidate Tony’s and this entire post is dedicated to the pontification and edification of Tony Stark. To acknowledge anyone else’s problems would take away from poor little Tony’s trauma and issues, and we sure can’t have that. Nope. Your entire argument falls flat on its face right onto the apartment and shatters into a thousand shiny shards of bullshit because it can’t stand on its own without the dismissal and omission of everyone else’s trauma.

10) “And then in Civil War, he gets his face rubbed in his failures again. Look, here’s someoneelse you couldn’t save! This is YOUR FAULT Tony, you asshole!”

A) Because Tony, despite being successful, is also a colossal failure and B) Ultron was his fuck up and it cost so many people their lives. He doesn’t get my sympathy nor will I acknowledge his man pain because the MCU does that enough already, just to make Tony a tragic figure you’re supposed to feel bad for and love because he’s snarky and that obviously outweighs all the bad deeds and traits he’s done and displayed.

11) “And everyone thinks he’s an asshole.”

He literally recruited a 15 year old boy into fighting a war against super-powered beings and grown adults by blackmailing him, didn’t tell him the whole story, and once the boy was injured and of no further use to Tony, he cast him aside, not because he cared (as evidence that he didn’t even care enough about Peter to know or ask his fucking age), but because he couldn’t be useful in his injured state, and when Peter wanted to still help, Tony again blackmailed him into going home, even though he blackmailed him into coming into a fucking war in the first place.

Not to mention the first thing he does to this poor kid is shame him for his possessions, mock him for having a “retro” set up and suggested he got his stuff from the “thrift store? salvation army?” like the classist, privileged piece of shit he is. The kid is fucking 15 and he’s not rich. But Tony doesn’t care, because why would he care about not condescending to a child when he’s willing to bring that kid into harm’s way and abandon him once he’s injured?

Nobody “thinks he’s an asshole”. Everyone knows that he is.

12) Tony doesn’t “need” a friend. He has friends. He’s the one that pushes them away, he’s the one that fucks up, it’s not their job to babysit him the way it’s not Sam’s job to be everyone’s fucking therapist especially when that’s the only time Klandom gives a shit about Sam Wilson, when he can be of use to the traumatized white boys whose pain is the only ones that matter.

Tony needs a fucking reality check and a colonoscopy to remove the bug and stick up his ass.

13) “Even Falcon – who is shown in Winter Soldier to be helping soldiers process PTSD and the scars of war – doesn’t seem to notice or care.”

You fucking nasty ass racist. Are you for real? Is Sam on call for everyone? Is he everyone’s pet monkey or mammy or nigger or coon or slave, here to dance and come and cater to every white person with problems as they need them? Sam doesn’t even fucking deal or talk to Tony, but here you are, holding him to a standard of being there for someone he’s met like once before Civil War. “Even Falcon” oh my god SHUT THE FUCK UP. Sam doesn’t owe Tony SHIT.

I can’t believe I’m reading this. Tony literally hunted Sam down, had Vision fire at him, and when it hit Rhodey for Tony’s man pain, Sam still tried to save Rhodey, and when Sam, who was being fucking hunted by Tony, apologized, Tony literally shot at him and sent him flying and knocked him on his ass. But he’s supposed to be there for Tony’s problems? Really? Please fuck off.

14) “Literally the only person who’s remotely sympathetic to him? A little kid. ”

What movies did you watch

15) “Yeah, he’s abrasive and pushes people away. Small wonder: everyone he loves either dies, leaves him or betrays him.”

You don’t get to literally spend an embarrassing amount of time writing this fictitious filth talking about how he needs a friend and then undermine your own point with “yeah, he pushes them away, and can you blame him?” If he pushes them away, THAT’S ON HIM. It’s not their job to keep fighting for a guy who doesn’t fight for them. They’re not his personal caretakers. He’s a grown-ass man with a fucking multi-billion empire, privilege, power, and resources to literally whatever the fuck he wants. He’s going to be okay. He has access to resources to get help. It’s on him to get it, not Rhodey or Pepper or Sam to force him or deal with his issues for him.

16) “Even Cap – Captain fucking America, who he both loves and resents because Daddy loved Rogers more than he loved Tony – has betrayed him.”

Lmao except that’s what Tony did when he tried to force everyone to register? He didn’t give a shit about anyone else’s opinion? He literally tried to apprehend Steve and Sam and the others? Held Wanda captive “for her own safety”? Got Sam and Scott and Clint thrown in jail, got Peter injured, got Natasha to be driven away from him, and got nothing for his troubles? Also lol @ this entire pathetic appeal to pathos as though that would dismiss all of Tony’s horrible qualities and deeds.

17) Tony Stark doesn’t need a hug. He needs to stop being a fuck up, and you don’t get to sit there and wax poetic about how he “needs a hug but pushes everyone away but it’s for their own good but Tony really needs a hug okay???” Tony’s actions are his own. His fault. A lot of shit is his fault. He’s a grown man with more money than he can spend in his lifetime. He has literally no excuse for how he acts, and any mental illness does not justify nor dismiss his fucked up behaviour and actions he took against others.

18) “Rhodes…not quite a friend” my antiblack racists are tingling.

19) You literally tried to say that Pepper wasn’t a friend to Tony, just an employee and girlfriend…yikes.

20) “Rhodey is where he is because of Tony” and “There’s a dependence that keeps them from fully being equal” this is how I know you’re an ugly racist @jenniferrpovey. Rhodey has achieved so much on his own and is a character on his own that does not rely on Tony, but according to you, he’s nothing more than a black slave dependent on his white master. Dependent on the white man to provide and guide him like a savage. That’s exactly what you’re saying, and you as a forty-something should fucking know better than playing into this racist antiblack fuckery that subjugates and oppresses Black people and places people/characters like Tony as “white saviours” as though Black people can’t do anything for themselves. How the fuck are you forty but you still haven’t picked that up? Are you kidding me? Did you really try to dismiss everything Rhodey’s accomplished and insist they’re not equals because Rhodey is dependent on Tony, which couldn’t be further from the truth? Do you do black face and place burning crosses on black people’s lawns in your spare time, too? Inquiring minds wanna know.

Suffice it to say, this entire post and my feelings on it can be summarized as a gigantic, heart-felt fuck you to all of the ugly, bitter, and antiblack racists who will do anything to venerate the white man and his problems and relevance but dismiss the black characters and the women who accomplish so much on their own and paint them as the problematic parts of Tony’s life, the ones who aren’t there for him, instead of Tony being a grown man who makes his own decisions that fuck up everything, result in people being jailed and killed, and somehow none of it being his fault.

Can’t wait to do this again with you soon, Klandom. It’s been a pleasure, as always.

Source: drnerdloveOH BOY WAS THIS EVER WORTH THE WAITADAM BACK AGAIN WITH THE EPIC DRAGFORGET EDGES OP’S WHOLE SCALP HAS BEEN S N A T C H E Dfandom racismanti tony starkEAT THE RICH AND TONY STARK STANS

Tumblr Talk II

… the study of the European Middle Ages has denied blacks the right to a shared medieval past that would, in turn, authorize them to share the present that emerges from it. In other words, denying blacks medieval coevalness allows Euro-centric cultures to relegate modern blacks to a strictly modern status in which their history appears to be without the authorizing length and depth available to whites. The denial of medieval coevalness encourages students to ask, ‘Where were the black people in the Middle Ages?’ in a tone that suggests they are not entirely certain whether black people existed at all.
Cord J. Whitaker, “Race-ing the dragon: the Middle Ages, race and trippin’ into the future”
(via medievalpoc)
General Curses for the Everyday Assholes Around You

– May all the chocolate chips in your cookies turn out to be raisins

– May your headphone cord catch on every door handle

– May your phone always die when you need it most

– May you always miss a belt loop

– May every great fitting pair of pants you have stretch out disroportionately throughout the day and no longer fit

– May you always feel your phone vibrating when it’s not

–  May every sock you wear be rotated just enough to be uncomfortable

– May all your social notifications be game invites

– May you ALWAYS step in a wet spot after putting on fresh, clean socks

– May your tea be too hot when you receive/make it and then ice cold when you go back to it

– May you always pick the slowest line up

– May your shoelaces be JUST long enough not to tie without stepping on them al day

– May you stub your toe on every doorframe you go through

– May you get papercuts on every book you open

– May you step on a leggo while trying to find your way in the dark

– May your tea and coffee always be bitter

– May a bird poop on that pretty car that you feel needs to block the crosswalk/my path.

– May your keys never be where you left them.

– May you always gain back those last 5 pounds (plus one).

– May your wifi connection be one bar or less for no reason.

– May the pockets you carry your change in all suddenly develop quarter-sized holes. (but may that change always make it’s way to someone who needs it).

Oooh… these are all good…. 😉

Set a time limit on them and you’re good to go!

Source:

marvel in color; (x)

Doona Bae as The Wasp

BD Wong as Doctor Strange

Osric Chau as Iron Fist

↳ Michelle Rodriguez as Maria Hill 

↳ Alina Serban as Scarlet Witch

↳ Dichen Lachman as The Ancient One

ok i don’t usually reply to things and i don’t really have the time right now but

firstly this is a fancast. secondly, the idea of marvel casting non-white actors for traditionally white parts is neither a disservice to the characters or necessarily pandering, while their casting of white actors as either non-white or ethnically ambiguous characters, such as the Ancient One, the Wasp, and Scarlet Witch, most definitely is racist. in the Ultimates verse, the Wasp is written as biracial, with an Asian mother, and considering that Janet Van Dyne has been axed off unnecessarily in the mcu anyway, there’s no reason why she couldn’t be played or have been played by an Asian actress. Regarding both the Iron Fist and Doctor Strange, there has been a great deal of conversation about their casting by people better informed by me, but the fact that remains that their origins rely heavily on orientalist stereotypes that could have been remedied by the casting of asian actors in these roles.

the issue isn’t just that marvel should be casting minorities in roles WRITTEN FOR MINORITIES, but that they seem to be deliberately choosing to tell white stories over those about people of colour.

also seriously, they cast benedict cumberbatch because they wanted him in the mcu, not because they thought he’d be the right person for the part.

… content always reflects the politics of the creator. the fact that we have two Avengers films where the Avengers team is 100% white up till the last fifteen seconds of Age of Ultron is a political statement. the idea that the mcu makes films about characters who are “”popular”” is incorrect because before the movies were announced, no mainstream audience had heard of iron man, ant man, or doctor strange. while it is commendable that marvel/disney has launched a franchise from marvel’s less popular characters, the reason they haven’t made a black panther or captain marvel film, in addition to postponing them further in order to release antman 2 and spiderman is because their political agenda dictates that they care more about their white male characters than those played by women or people of colour. in addition, the reason samuel l jackson was cast as nick fury is because nick fury was redesigned as his likeness without slj’s permission, and his agent threatened to sue. the fact that you’re justifying a billion dollar company having not made a film starring a minority as not wanting to “”pander”” to minorities is a gross mindset, but honestly it doesn’t even matter because marvel clearly doesn’t care about making minorities happy in the first place.

 

Why is it that casting an overwhelmingly boring white cast is “Well, they’re just trying to make money.” or “They’re finding the right person.” or “That’s how it is in the comics.” But casting ANY actors of color is seen as “pandering” or “making something a political issue”? Please explain to me what about wanting to see Asian actors (or any other POC) portray characters that are based in Asian mythos and culture is political? Like, white people, why do y’all say that shit? Why can’t you just say “I’m racist and there at no niggers or spics or chinks or rag heads allowed in my all white safe spaces?” @diversehighfantasy@nerdsagainstfandomracism @jawnbaeyega

 

OK. I’m still hung up on the first response talking about this and that character is “American” when they clearly mean white.

Maria Hill is racially ambiguous but that also means American is just as valid as Asian/Asian-American/etc.

Why the hell is American being used this way in 2016? And it’s even more infuriating because plenty of American characters – like quintessentially American characters – are played by people of other nationalities (British, Australian, Irish, etc), but they’re usually white. I’ve literally never seen anyone like “uh you can’t fancast that British actor because the character is American in canon.”

i.e. Don’t pretend this is about nationality when it’s about race, especially when the nationality in question includes every damn race.

Anyway. Yeah. The MCU is indefensible in its representation of Asians and its East Asian whitewashing. The MCU is pretty indefensibly racist in general, though I keep waiting for them to make me change my mind.

It’s funny that people even try to invoke the comics in defense of the MCU’s obsession with whiteness when Marvel comics are light years ahead of the MCU. Like, why is the MCU even considering Carol Danvers when we have Kamala Khan? Why is Peter Parker the MCU’s Spider-Man when Miles Morales is joining the Avengers in the new Marvel Universe? At least the comics are trying.

Source:

I am done choosing between my womanhood and my blackness.

Stop giving me fictional white female characters and telling me “these are the fictional women to admire, the ones that break the mold, the feminist icons, the representation you’ve been longing for.”

Stop asking me to squint to see myself represented on screen. Stop telling me to “wait my turn”, to support shows with white female leads as though this was a rare occurrence, as though there haven’t been thousands of them through the years. As though white women haven’t been held as the pinnacle of progress and feminism on TV since Lucille Ball.

Stop telling me that a white woman playing a spy, is innovative and feminist when you’ve had Wonder Woman, Charlie’s Angels, Scarecrow & Mrs. King and Alias before Agent Carter.

Stop telling me that seeing Jessica Jones, a white female character with PTSD, on screen is a long time coming, a revolutionary feminist act, when Joss Carter, Abbie Mills, Olivia Pope, Sasha Williams and Michonne aren’t afforded the same treatment regarding theirs from writers, media and fandom alike.

Stop telling me that “romance is not part of the show” when said show is built on the loss of the White Male Lead’s love interest. Stop labeling black female characters as one half of a “brotp”, as the supportive friend, a mammy that does everything but wipe the white man’s ass or tuck him into bed, only to prop up the Random White Woman In The Background as the obvious choice for a new, better suited love interest.

Stop giving me Trojan Horses, those black female characters I’ve longed for, the ones I finally can see myself in, the ones that you’re praised for creating and writing, the ones you make money off of only to kill them later, once they’ve served their purpose.

We are not your first step towards success, we aren’t a tool to be used to avoid criticism, or appease higher ups afraid of losing money because of the lack of diversity and representation in their shows.

We are not either women or black, we are both and we deserve to be spies, the fated love interest, the damsel in distress, the selfish one, the vulnerable one, the pinnacle of feminism and progress, the one who’s turn has come, the one who was a long time coming.

Stop giving me a drop of water and calling it the sea.

The exploitation of African-Americans through the use of media is obvious from the films above.

1. Little Rascals (1920’s) – The coon character is one of the most insulting of all anti-black characters. The name itself is an abbreviation of raccoon and  dehumanizing. As with Sambo, the coon was portrayed as a lazy, easily frightened, chronically idle, inarticulate, buffoon.

2. King Kong (1930’s) – The brute character portrays black men as innately savage, animalistic, destructive, and criminal – deserving punishment, maybe death. This brute is a fiend, a sociopath, an anti-social menace. Black brutes are depicted as hideous, terrifying predators who target helpless victims, especially white women.  It’s been suggested that King Kong was a veiled allegory of the life of boxer Jack Johnson, who married two white women during his lifetime and was even arrested for taking one across state lines.

3. Shaft (1970’s) – Blaxploitation films are mainly set in poor neighborhoods. Ethnic stereotypes against white characters, such as “crackers” and “honky”, and other derogatory names are common plot and or character elements.

4. Lethal Weapon (1980’s) – African American males are typically cast in specific roles in American film. The usual suspects include the black sidekick of a white protagonist, the token black person, the comedic relief, the athlete, the ladies’ man, and most damaging, the violent black man.

5. Menace to Society (1990’s) – In the 1990s the typical cinema and television, the brute was nameless — sometimes faceless; he sprang from a hiding place, he robbed, raped, and murdered. He represented the cold brutality of urban life. Often he was a gangbanger.

6. Norbit (2000’s) – This was the mammy caricature, and, like all caricatures, it contained a little truth surrounded by a larger lie. The caricature portrayed an obese, coarse, maternal figure. She had great love for her white “family,” but often treated her own family with disdain.

Be careful while watching television (tell-our-vision) because it is a Lethal Weapon that can turn Little Rascals into a Menace to society!!!!

  1. anonymous asked:

    those who defend the mcu problematic shit saying “is a DIFFERENT version, not the comics!!!!!1!!” yeah dude, but why it must be a version were mostly characters are white, cis males??

    mcufandomhatespeopleofcolor answered:

    Just in case people don’t believe you about it being a version that’s predominantly white cis men here’s a handy visual guide to the white parade up to 2013

    So you gotta think in the films the only supporting PoC in the films you can add to this are 2 supporting characters Sam Wilson and Helen Cho. (Before anyone asks none of the PoC actors in Guardians of the Galaxy count as representation because they had on body paint/CGI and were presented as aliens).  Meanwhile you can add literally a twice as many white men and women here’s an incomplete list:

    • Sharon Carter,
    • Wanda Maximoff (whitewashed)
    • Pietro Maximoff (whitewashed)
    • Peter Quill

    And that’s literally only the good guys.  At this rate white people in the MCU films are being added at twice the rate as PoC.  Plus Ant-Man is coming out and that looks extremely white too with only white leads and no significant PoC roles at all.

    This isn’t counting the fact that although AOS is diverse its only the PoC and queer white women who keep getting killed off.  Or the fact that Agent Carter is completely white and that all the main cast on Daredevil is white.  And of the PoC on Daredevil they’ve already killed off Ben and Claire is rumored to come back but she only had five appearances.

    And if anyone cares at all the US isn’t as white as these films, its only 62% white, with white men only comprlsing like 31% of the population so the super whiteness super maleness of the MCU is really freaking obvious.

    TL;DR The MCU is a much whiter much more male centered world than the comics or the current US demographics.

     

     

    anonymous asked:

    After recent events and stuff fandom has been talking and debating about I’m wondering if anyone has ever made a list of PoC who gets killed in TV? Particularly one for this year.

    queerhawkeye answered:

    That would be a way longer list than [the 152 dead lesbians], and growing at a much faster rate, God.

    A quick google search didn’t show any specific list, though it did remind me that there is a much older and much more widespread counterpart for the Bury Your Gays trope: the Black Dude Dies First trope. The article has a handy list of some of the characters that fit the trope, and, though the list in movies is longer, there is a good handful of examples in live action TV.

    • The black and latinx characters killed off in five seasons of Breaking Bad alone are probably close to a hundred. (See: [All deaths in BrBa] and [BrBa’s race problem])
    • Literally every production about a white guy who knows martial arts kills off nameless Asian characters like they get paid by the corpse. (Daredevil, [maybe]?)
    • The whole “post-apocalyptic dystopia” genre is based off on one white dude inexplicably staying alive while all the brown people around him keep dying. ([TWD] and [FTWD]!)

    This discussion happens with… like… every show. [The 100]. [Supernatural]. [Agents of SHIELD]. [LOST]. I could probably just keep googling “[name of show] + racism” and get a more and more lists of characters of color killed to move the plot forward, for shock value, to cause a white character’s guilt, because [a racist writer didn’t get along with the actor], etc.

    The disproportionate amount of violence inflicted on characters of color on TV, I think, shouldn’t need to be proved with lists or stats –not that there aren’t lists, stats or even [academic writings] on the subject. There are characters of color in almost all shows, and they are getting killed off almost every episode in literally any show with an average level of violence. Cop shows, action shows, supernatural shows, horror shows, sci-fi shows, they all show brown dead bodies weekly.

    I don’t doubt that there are, somewhere, stats on how these numbers aren’t getting better with time, lists and percentages and essays on how all our favorite “””diverse””” shows use characters of color as canon fodder. Maybe seeing the numbers all laid out would do something against the normalization of brown deaths in TV.

    But making a list of, say, all the dead characters of color in television in the first three months of 2016 would… probably be a considerable feat, but doable. Making a database and building proper stats, like @autostraddle’s [Ultimate Stats of WLW in TV], of all the dead characters of color in the history of Anglo-speaking Western television would require an incredible amount of work, people and time. Not that it’s impossible, but the numbers are fucking abysmal.

 

This is what its like on Tumblr!

Hollywood : Whitewashing (Part III)

Normally, I like to celebrate and geek out about the things Hollywood is getting right but lately there has been a number of serious fuckups, that have been pointed out to us, that shows that the PTB in Hollywood are seriously out of  touch with the rest of the American people, and need to get their shit together, and undergo a serious diversity overhaul.

I know I’ve mentioned before what a huge behemoth Hollywood is, how its so large that it can be slow to change. The problem with that theory is that even in situations where Hollywood has the time, to make different types of choices, it doesn’t. I understand that often films are years in the making and the films that have been released this year are sometimes cast months (in some cases years) in advance, so I will give a tiny bit of leeway in that direction, as Hollywood probably has not fully understood just how seriously their fuckups have been on the diversity front. What I do not give a pass to are movies that have been recently cast.

For example:

MCU: The Marvel Cinematic Universe keeps falling down on the diversity front. Given an opportunity to cast anything other than White men in heroic roles in the films it continues to get this  wrong. There are almost no Women of Color in the MCU, outside of Agents of Shield (two Asian women), and Daredevil’s Elektra (its depiction of Asian women is  a  problem that was just discussed). There is one Afro Latina in the MCU as Claire in Daredevil.  I guess they figured with an Afro Latina they got all their bases covered and don’t need to cast any more women of color.

Hopefully we can get some representation with Luke Cage, which is coming out in the Fall, and hopefully it won’t rely on a bunch of tropes, since Hollywood seems to find writing for black female characters to be one of the hardest things in the universe. (Perhaps if they had some black women writers behind the scenes in Hollywood, this might not be a problem.) My argument though is  we shouldn’t have to wait for a Black vehicle to see black women in the superhero universe. We should’ve been included all along.

Jessica Jones went a long way towards depicting white women in the MCU and I say white women because the one depiction they had of a black woman in that series (Luke Cage’s wife) was ignominiously murdered by the white heroine of that series, which mostly served to send the, I’d like to believe unintentional, message to its audience that there is no room in this universe for black and white women’s stories to exist together.

Agent Carter too, is a prime example of heroic white women existing at the expense of women of color, as if there’s no room for both to co-exist. Perhaps the writers of that show think Peggy will look less heroic next to women who are actually experiencing some next level hardship? Or maybe the writers are too lazy to write the kind of story that would make Peggy look heroic by helping the lives of women who don’t look like her?

Its as if Hollywood refuses to understand that White women and  WoC don’t have to be pitted against each other for a good story to be told. Their stories can and often do exist side by side and doesn’t detract from the the other’s story.

Don’t get me wrong, there are plenty of white female heroes that I love. Like Black Widow, who has yet to get her own movie, even though the MCU was willing to make yet another film featuring a white man: Antman. A movie no one was asking for. We’ve been asking for a black Widow movie for over three years now and  it would also be nice to see a White Tiger (Latino),the original Captain Marvel (African American), or even Storm. (Catwoman doesn’t count. That movie was shit.)

Instead of giving us a Black Widow movie Hollywood has decided to make the puzzling decision to keep casting  Scarlett Johannson in worse and worse vehicles, as if they’re trying to destroy her career before they have to make that Black Widow movie we’ve been asking them for. What is their plan exactly? Keep making worse movies with her in them until her career flops and then use that as an excuse to call off the Black Widow movie they have no intention of ever making?

The less said about the DC Universe films, the better. The TV shows, on the other hand,which seems to exist exclusively on the CW, are at least trying, which is more than I can say for Marvel’s TV universe, which is incoherent and scattered all over the place.

While we are on the subject of Marvel, lets discuss: Whitewashing

Iron Fist/Dr. Strange: Whitewashing/White Savior trope:

I think I mentioned on another site that Hollywood has spent decades creating trope after trope after sterotype about PoC, so now that they have the ability to cast persons of color in movies, their castings are almost always going to be problematic no matter who they choose. Hollywood is an incredibly lazy and unimaginative place at times. They can be just as traditional and hidebound as that Auntie who spends all day/every day in church and walks around the house humming gospel songs to herself.

I know, I know, they are in the business of making money and they  like sure things, and don’t like to take many chances which is a great business model when your business doesn’t depend on being imaginative.

Ghost in the Shell: Whitewashing

Okay this photo gallery is for that asshole writer of Ghost in the Shell, who pretty much just killed his fucking movie by saying that they chose Scarlett Johannson because there are no good Asian actresses.

 

 

Or it could just be that their lazy asses couldn’t be bothered to look for any to star in their movie.

 

Gods of Egypt:Whitewashing

Nina Simone: Colorism

 

 

 

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