[Discussion] On Television, Cinema and Race

Thread for race issues in media.

Birth Of a Nation
This movie isn't do so good. I think this is because black people are tired of slave type movies, white people don't want the white guilt, and everybody else is turned off by the rape case. I mean this in general. This is just a perfect storm for the downfall of the movie.

Surviving Compton
Straight out of compton left out the ladies. This lifetime show means to correct that. I believe all of the production was done by women.

Mulan live.
All Chinese cast. Maybe the dumb choices of Gods of Egypt are over.

Stengah wrote:

We have very different takes on what kind of person Castle is. This is certainly how he justifies his actions to himself, but really he's a sadist with just enough self control to (usually) aim himself at people that "deserve" it (which frequently include people only guilty of very minor crimes) and doesn't get choked up when he kills an innocent. He works against law and order not because he thinks it's corrupt, but because he thinks it's too lenient. With him, every criminal gets the death penalty, and there's no such thing as rehabilitation.

We're definitely a ways apart. Perhaps we're attuned to different takes on the character.

To me, Castle doesn't kill because he enjoys killing, like, let's say Cletus Kasady (Carnage), rather Castle has an urge for vengeance, to remove those who the judicial system cannot or will not contain. He targets specific types of criminal. He plans to avoid collateral casualties.

Castle, again, to me, does not take enjoyment in inflicting pain onto others, it's that he was trained to inflict pain onto others, by his country, and can compartmentalize as a result. It's a misconception that Castle is a sadist. He accepts that violence may be necessary to resolve certain situations. He accepts that he can be the one to do so. There's no emotion other than rage which comes from the injustice, which Castle channels to neutralize threats. Castle is numb to the brutality of it all. It's necessity. Not everyone dies easily. Intimidation is a necessity. Fear and doubt provide an advantage. Billy Russo is a sadist.

If anything Castle takes solace in the empowerment, and the order within the chaos, thinning the cesspool, knowing he is tipping the scales for the better. To protect and serve victims. Not perpetrators. Castle neutralizes threats. Permanently. No time served to once again taste freedom. Not for those who cross certain lines. There's no rehabilitation for heinous crimes.

Stengah wrote:

I'd say he'd view them more as competition than enemies. Really, the crime he'd come after them for is merely trying to do what he does, or for "robbing" him of being the one to kill someone.

For disrespecting the oath they took. For bringing disgrace to the badge. For abusing trust to victimize innocents rather than to protect and serve. It's that corruption which Castle would come after them for. Those crimes.

I'm getting caught up. But to highlight how wrong these real life individuals are to believe fictional Frank Castle is a symbol they can take up. They're not the same. Not even close. Let alone the fact Frank Castle is a fictional character in created scenarios, for escapism, for thought, yet they're trying to incorporate this fiction onto reality. Perhaps a padded cell if not a barred one?

Stengah wrote:

It would be very satisfying to see him hunt down a cop that killed an unarmed black teen, as well as anyone in the precinct that covered for him or testified in his favor.

Please. I'd pay a premium.

I'd say you're looking at how Castle sees himself and I'm looking at him from the outside. He needs to be the one to inflict violence whenever it's "needed. It's almost always something resolvable without the level of violence he favors, and more often than not he's partially responsible for creating these situations where he's the only one that can "fix" them.
Who Castle's targets and what he considers heinous crimes is seriously messed up. He frequently kills small-time drug dealers and low level henchmen who are likely caught up in a bad situation and just trying to get survive. He's killed the innocent family members of his targets with no remorse, merely being related to morally questionable people was enough for him. He kills people who admittedly rob banks, but don't hurt anyone in the process. He kills security guards who unwittingly work for the wrong people. Castle's not looking for justice or even justified revenge, he's looking for the flimsiest excuse.

I'm about 99% sure Castle has never knowingly killed a innocent person. In the MAX comic he thinks he accidentally one of the mob bosses kids. He is so freaked out by it he tries to kill himself saying something like " I need to punish myself for this" or there about. Anyway something stops him and he learns the kid died from a bullet from someone else's gun.

In Punisher Max he blows up a boat with a bunch of corrupt corporate bigwigs. Also on the boat are a bunch of shareholders who had no knowledge of what the bigwigs had done / were planning to do and the crew and waitstaff.
He also killed his then-partner's girlfriend, albeit under the influence of Hatemonger, but he lied to this partner about it.
And again, the only crime lot of the "deserving" people he's killed have committed is be hired to work security by a bad guy. They're often doing a perfectly legal job when Castle guns them down.

Once again I’m struck at the difference between what cops can get away with and anyone else, including other govt employees. At the County IT office where I work, we were specifically asked not to have too much geeky swag around our desk. We needed to have a “professional and nondescript” workplace, even though the public almost never visits our office.

Yet police associations can straight up have an anti-hero logo as their official symbol? When they deal with the public all day long and need to be as “professional and nondescript” as possible?

SMH

Finally, I’m amazed Disney hasn’t slapped these associations with cease and desist letters like they did the dad who wanted to put Spider-Man on his dead 6-year-old’s gravestone.

Interesting thing about The Boys tv show vs comic. The comic has several gay characters that aren't gay in the tv show or don't exist.

I wonder if they didn't want gay people doing doing bad things or if they didn't want The Boys doing bad things to gay people. In the tv show there is one lesbian character that in the comic we don't know her sexuality. I think the show mainly makes her out as a good person. The character is treated badly but not by The Boys. In the comics The Boys do something pretty evil to gay characters. Hmmm well I thought it was.

Major spoiler for the comic book

Spoiler:

In the comic The Boys bug the HQ of a super team. The team is doing all sorts of bad things but one thing they catch on tape is three of the male members have sex with each other.

The Boys use the tape to out one of the members. The guy is forced to make a public apology for being gay and is kicked from the team.

I don't think the comic handled this well. I see the point was to show The Boys as not being good guys. The problem I had is there was no voice saying who cares if he gay. It was just universal that gay was bad in this universe. They treated it like it was on par to dealing drugs.

Baron Of Hell wrote:

Interesting thing about The Boys tv show vs comic. The comic has several gay characters that aren't gay in the tv show or don't exist.

I wonder if they didn't want gay people doing doing bad things or if they didn't want The Boys doing bad things to gay people. In the tv show there is one lesbian character that in the comic we don't know her sexuality. I think the show mainly makes her out as a good person. The character is treated badly but not by The Boys. In the comics The Boys do something pretty evil to gay characters. Hmmm well I thought it was.

Major spoiler for the comic book

Spoiler:

In the comic The Boys bug the HQ of a super team. The team is doing all sorts of bad things but one thing they catch on tape is three of the male members have sex with each other.

The Boys use the tape to out one of the members. The guy is forced to make a public apology for being gay and is kicked from the team.

I don't think the comic handled this well. I see the point was to show The Boys as not being good guys. The problem I had is there was no voice saying who cares if he gay. It was just universal that gay was bad in this universe. They treated it like it was on par to dealing drugs.

Yeah, the comic is also from 2006 so I can't say I'm surprised. It was kinda in the TV show.

Spoiler:

Okay, so hypocritical preacher being gay while boosting anti-gay bigotry is a bit tired and certainly is hammered pretty hard, but it is there and they do blackmail him with it.

Though I did roll my eyes a bit at that being the thing that was "revalatory" to Starlight. It's just so sudden and on-the-nose, like she hadn't been thinking and noticing these things in the years prior. I guess it was meant to play like she went to college and grew as a person but she's more in a job with super sh*tty coworkers than in college, experiencing new things with peers.

oh yeah, I guess they retooled it.

If you haven't unsubscribed from your premium channel now that the dragonboobs show is over, there's great entertainment Sunday evenings with A Black Lady Sketch Show. One of the funny folks from Samantha Bee's show, others you've seen somewhere, and big-name celebrity appearances.

Challenging assumptions about race in the Wheel of Time.

The Two River's castings were announced last week and the diverse group of actors predictably brought out the trolls and racists.

While, I had no problem with the castings, they did challenge my mental image of the characters. A mental image that was wrong based on the actual source material as it turns out.

Personally, I can't wait to watch Zoe Robin's tugging on some braids.

I don't have any problems with the casting other than the guy playing Perrin is too skinny. However, none of them really fit my mental image of the characters, and I think that image was formed mostly by the covers of the books more than anything.

I've been reading a lot of NK Jemisin fantasy books lately, and I regularly have to 'correct' my image of the protagonists. Her main characters are almost always POC, but I always tend to picture them as white. I guess seeing almost all protagonists in movies/tv-series being white, even when the source material has them as POC (see: Hunger Games) tends to imprint on one's mind.

I don't tend to visualize while reading very often though, and do not tend to build a very detailed picture of the characters in my mind. I actively dislike authors who go on and on about how a scene or person looks (see: Tolkien).

My only mental images of the characters come from the book covers.

'Crazy Rich Asians' Co-Writer Exits Sequel Amid Pay Disparity Dispute

Hollywood Reporter wrote:

A year after Crazy Rich Asians opened No. 1 at the box office (on its way to a $238.5 million global gross) and raised Asian representation in Hollywood to new heights, its sequels have been slow to launch.

Although director Jon M. Chu had hoped to keep the creative team intact, co-writer Adele Lim no longer is involved with the project, The Hollywood Reporter has learned. At issue is pay parity: Co-writer Peter Chiarelli, as an experienced feature scribe who broke out with 2009's The Proposal, was to be paid a significantly higher fee than Lim, a veteran TV writer who never had penned a feature until Chu hired her to work on the screenplay.

"Being evaluated that way can't help but make you feel that is how they view my contributions," says Lim, who believes that women and people of color often are regarded as "soy sauce" — hired to sprinkle culturally specific details on a screenplay, rather than credited with the substantive work of crafting the story.

She declined to provide specific figures, but sources say that Warner Bros.' starting offers were $800,000 to $1 million for Chiarelli and $110,000-plus for Lim. Warners explained to Lim's reps that the quotes are industry-standard established ranges based on experience and that making an exception would set a troubling precedent in the business. The talks escalated to studio chairman Toby Emmerich, who backed his business affairs department's stance.

...

After Lim walked away from a deal last fall, Color Force spent about five months fielding other writers of Asian descent for the job. (Chu, who was prepping to shoot Warners' In the Heights, was not involved.) They came back to Lim in February with an offer closer to parity with Chiarelli, who had volunteered to split his fee with her, but Lim passed.

"Pete has been nothing but incredibly gracious, but what I make shouldn't be dependent on the generosity of the white-guy writer," she says. "If I couldn't get pay equity after CRA, I can't imagine what it would be like for anyone else, given that the standard for how much you're worth is having established quotes from previous movies, which women of color would never have been [hired for]. There's no realistic way to achieve true equity that way."

This video talks about ladies of Star Trek and the problematic stuff dealing with them. Things like being forced to leave the show because of sexism, mistreatment, and problematic episodes.

It's been very interesting watching certain comics line up to "defend" Shane Gillis, another comic who was hired by SNL on Friday only to be fired yesterday because over the weekend it came out that he made a boatload of racist, sexist, anti-Muslim, and homophobic comments on his podcast. And by interesting I mean actively confirming why I had a gut dislike for certain comics who, shocker, were mostly older white dudes.

Gillis issued a statement which is kinda a masterclass of privileged cluelessness: it claimed that he's a comedian that "pushes boundaries" and being that edgy "requires risks," that if you dig through his comedy you're going to find "bad misses," and that he'd gladly apologize to anyone who was "actually offended by the things I've said."

Just as Gillis is helping me cross off comedians from my list, he's also crossing off presidential candidates because apparently Andrew Yang's on Team Gillis and is disappointed that NBC fired him. You can take the man out of the libertarian bro culture of Silicon Valley, but you can't take the libertarian bro culture out of the man.

And if all this mess wasn't bad enough there were other new SNL cast members hired last week. One of them was Bowen Yang, an SNL staff writer whose promotion to the cast makes him the first full-Asian series regular. The Hollywood Reporter celebrated this bit of comedy history by tweeting an article that featured the picture of Joel Kim Booster, another Asian comedian who most definitely wasn't Bowen Yang. THR later apologized and said it tweeted "an incorrect picture due to a photo error."

OG_slinger wrote:

Just as Gillis is helping me cross off comedians from my list, he's also crossing off presidential candidates because apparently Andrew Yang's on Team Gillis and is disappointed that NBC fired him. You can take the man out of the libertarian bro culture of Silicon Valley, but you can't take the libertarian bro culture out of the man.

Yang made comments in support of far-right huckster Andy Ngo a couple months ago on twitter as well.

OG, who is defending him? Like to cross some assholes off my list too.

Rob Schneider and Norm Macdonald tweeted their support of Gillis.

And Jim Jefferies and Bill Burr went on David Spade's Comedy Central talk show (which is apparently a thing) to discuss Gillis and complained about "cancel culture" and how Millennials were ruining everything.

Sarah Silverman got in the mix tangentially, complaining about a "mutated McCarthy era" mentality that supposedly exists in comedy today where comedians have to watch what they say or get "canceled" in an unrelated LA Times piece was published on Monday, though she was defending Dave Chappelle's latest Netflix special, Sticks and Stones, which has been panned by critics and fans alike for him punching down at the LGBTQ community.

Gillis and Silverman did cross paths, though only in his podcast. Gillis and his dudebros were rating how funny different groups were--gay men and white women were considered the least funny--and Silverman got a special call out because "she's a Jew" and she talked about women's rights, something they found distinctly unfunny.

It's just disingenuous at this point whenever they complain about how they need to make controversial jokes as a method to test new material. What they decry as "cancel culture" is just a vehement "no" from the public and should be taken as a sign that their new material is not good.