Traversing the galaxy for intergalactic travels to Pigfarts!
twit light, the dark and mysterious story of Lord Byron
actual british award-winning children’s prime time educational telly here folks.
AramisSantiago Cabrera with a baby
Remus Lupin + Order of the Phoenix
i want to attend the athos school of dry humour and deadpan sarcasm
- ARAMIS SINGING
- ARAMIS BEING PROUD OF HIS SINGING
- CONSTANCE LACING UP HER CORSET WHILE ARAMIS DOES THE SASS
- ARAMIS AND CONSTANCE LOOKING HELLA DOMESTIC IN THE MIDDLE OF AN AMBUSH
- ARAMIS TRUSTING CONSTANCE TO DEFEND HIM AND THE BABY EVEN IF HE WASN’T SURE SHE EVEN KNEW HOW TO USE A SWORD
- ARAMIS SINGING
For the first time ever, this year’s Women Who Kick Ass panel at ComicCon was held in the convention’s largest venue, Hall H. Entertainment Weekly covers the panel here and it sounds incredible. A full transcript of the panel is here.
Unfortunately, the audience’s response to this panel was sexist and predictable.
A panel called “Women Who Kick Ass” follows Hunger Games. It’s in its fourth iteration, and the fact that it’s in Hall H on Saturday is a surprise. On the surface, it makes sense for this to follow Hunger Games, and it’s also likely the Con intended it to be something that would allow for the room to clear out a bit while shuffling in more people from the line that still snakes off across the street outside. But, all the same, there’s something gutsy about placing a frank discussion of Hollywood sexism, feminism, and the limited opportunities for women in the entertainment industry right before 20th Century Fox and Marvel come out to present superhero-heavy slates.
And “Women Who Kick Ass” is the most fascinating and enriching panel I attend at Comic-Con. In particular, its discussion of how sexism still rules far too often in Hollywood is terrific, with panelist Katee Sackhoff (of Battlestar Galactica fame) discussing a time an unnamed male actor pulled her arms out of their sockets while filming a fight sequence, in what she believes was recourse for her questioning him earlier in the shoot; and fellow panelist Tatiana Maslany of Orphan Black discussing how a male crew member inappropriately hit on her when she was just 18 and bound to a bed for a shot. The moderator is good, in that she knows to get out of the way when the women on the panel — particularly Michelle Rodriguez — cut loose, and the content is engaging throughout.
For the most part, the dudes I’m sitting near either pay respectful attention or check Twitter, though there are some jokes from an older guy in front of me about how stupid he finds all of this. Then Rodriguez uses the phrase “destructive male culture” — as part of a larger answer about how women need to take more agency in telling their own stories — and something in the crowd flips. A certain subset of the audience begins to get more and more vocal, and when the panel runs slightly over, as all panels have done during the day, the vocalizations begin to get easier to hear, even to someone sitting clear across a giant room in a place that tends to eat sound from specific individuals in the audience; one really has to make a ruckus to be heard.
The final question — from a young woman about what aspects the perfect kick-ass woman would have — turns into a digression about the many roles that women play in real life and the few that they are asked to play onscreen. It’s all fascinating stuff, with Sackhoff talking about wanting to see someone as kind and strong as her mother onscreen, and Walking Dead’s Danai Gurira talking about the effectiveness of female political protestors in her native Zimbabwe, the sort of story that would almost never appear in a Hollywood film — but the longer it goes on, the more restless the crowd gets. When Rodriguez grabs the microphone again to follow up on a point made by another panelist, for the first time, the audience ripples with something close to jeering anger. When the panel finally ends and the five women on it proceed off to the side for photographs, something done at the end of most Hall H panels, someone shouts something from the audience, to a mixture of supportive laughs and horrified gasps, and the women quickly leave the stage. (I was not sitting close enough to hear what was said, but I confirmed with several people sitting in the immediate vicinity that it was a young man shouting “Women who talk too much!” after the loudspeaker asked attendees to voice their appreciation for the participants in the “Women Who Kick Ass” panel.)
It’s an ugly moment, an unfortunate capper to a great session, to be followed by many of the guys sitting around me offering up tired lines like “I hope they feel empowered now!” and several recitations of the Twilight mantra about ruining the Con. To be sure, most people in the room were respectful. But at a certain point, there needs to be an accounting for the fact that there is an ugliness that burbles beneath the surface of too many Comic-Con events, sometimes intentional and sometimes unintentional. That’s not a task for the Con itself. It’s a task for nerd culture, and one that will require an earnest attempt to understand why this sort of ugliness rises up so often around women, lest all the nerd culture stereotypes prove unfortunately true.
You must learn your scales and your arpeggio
ABCs of Starkid: Non-StarKid Projects
White guys are so proud of their ability to be not offended. When one of them tells a rape joke or uses a racial slur, they wink and pat themselves on the back and give endless attaboys for their superior skills in being not offended. They decry the “politically correct” society they find themselves in and look down on anyone who has the lack of fortitude to be offended by anything.
Of course, what allows them to be not offended at rape jokes and racial slurs is that they are not targeted at them. For white guys, these are fun toys to play with; while for much of the rest of the world, they are tools of violence and oppression. Not just relics of the past, but very much alive and well today. So, then, the magical quality that allows these guys to remain so aloof and above-it-all is, quite simply, privilege.
And if you want to watch hypocrisy and cognitive dissonance in action, simply bring up privilege to these not offended white guys and see how fast and hard they become offended. Privilege is a concept so simple and obvious that most social scientists take it as axiomatic, but the mere mention of it gets these guys worked up into a rage. They’re so proud of their ability to be not offended by oppressive language and stereotypes, but they’ll be damned if you point out why. Funny. It’s almost as if they are the beneficiaries of systems of oppression and want to subtly encourage those systems so as to continue benefiting, while simultaneously stifling all mention of those systems, so as to mollify their fragile egos and underused consciences.
But by all means; continue to congratulate yourself on your superior ability to be not offended by oppression and cruelty.
If you haven’t seen this, click the damned button. You’ll thank me later.