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Race & Ethnicity on TV

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Either that or social media pressure forced him into it. Who knows.

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1 minute ago, Hiyo said:

Either that or social media pressure forced him into it. Who knows.

I linked to an interview where he spoke about his decision.

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And that's great. But given how all it takes is a few thousand people on Twitter voicing an opinion being enough to change hiring policies, he might just be a more savvy person than some other less savvy celebrities.

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3 minutes ago, Hiyo said:

And that's great. But given how all it takes is a few thousand people on Twitter voicing an opinion being enough to change hiring policies, he might just be a more savvy person than some other less savvy celebrities.

But it didn’t change hiring policies, literally no one had been hired in 4 years to voice him! And shockingly enough the show has survived!

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It was enough to get him to stop doing the voice.

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Just now, Hiyo said:

It was enough to get him to stop doing the voice.

No as he says in the interview actually talking to South Indian people who were impacted by the character and why it mattered to them made him stop. 

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Well, it's good that he said that.

Also, my comment about hiring wasn't specifically limited to the case of Hank Azaria voicing the character of Apu on the Simpsons.

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5 hours ago, biakbiak said:

No as he says in the interview actually talking to South Indian people who were impacted by the character and why it mattered to them made him stop. 

Yeah, and I give him credit for that because even though he probably should have done that a lot time ago, I know how difficult it can be to reevaluate things after you spent so much time convinced you were in the right. That’s more than the writers, including Groening, have done.

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Short video with Noel Clarke and Ashley Walters about them pushing for diversity on their show, Bulletproof:

 

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7 hours ago, Dani said:

‘All Rise’ Creator/EP Greg Spottiswood Fired By Warner Bros. TV Over Misconduct Allegations, Dropped By APA

The most recent accusations must have been really bad if they finally fired with only two episodes left to film. Most of the writer’s room quitting in season 1 wasn’t enough. 

The rot is deep at CBS.  How many "special probes" do they need to weed all their sexist, racist assholes out?  It seems like every six months you hear bout some jerk at CBS who needs to be specially investigated.

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On 3/21/2021 at 3:11 PM, xaxat said:

This looks awful.

 

Based on the trailer, this seems problematic. But also, this seems like a rehash of that show Adhir Kalyan was on where he played an exchange student from a predominantly Muslim country.

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On 3/24/2021 at 5:16 PM, Trini said:

Short video with Noel Clarke and Ashley Walters about them pushing for diversity on their show, Bulletproof:

 

I have a complicated relationship with Bulletproof. I'm happy for Noel Clarke and Ashley Walters for making/starring in it, and good for them for pushing to make it happen. They're both great - cool, funny, dynamic, and they play fantastically off of one another. But on the other hand... so many civil liberties violations. I'm pretty sure they surpassed the U.K.'s annual gun-fatality average by the end of the second episode, and it makes me squeamish when there's a "funny" scene involving one of the cops planting evidence in order to detain someone. I hesitate to condemn the show for it, because it's not like every buddy cop show/movie in existence doesn't do the exact same guns-blazing action sequences and "break the rules to catch the bad guys" routines - it's like Mindy Kaling taking heat for all the white love interests on The Mindy Project when a lot of other sitcoms with white showrunners at the time weren't fielding criticism for the same problem. However, Bulletproof happened to come on my radar in the summer of 2020, and let's just say I didn't relish seeing one of the leads "humanely" rendering a suspect unconscious with a carotid hold during a drug bust.

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I stumbled across this really good essay by a poet/writer the other day. Though it talks about Disney's offerings, it ventures out to other tv shows and the description is a great illustration on why representation matters (and how it has changed so much from the 90s/early 00s). The author recounts how tough it is to find current kid's shows featuring black children at the center and how her young son took heavy notice of this. Eventually, they had to give up and return to books which are miles more diverse than tv.

https://lareviewofbooks.org/article/disneys-disembodied-black-characters/

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In the middle of last summer, trying to understand the new balance of homeschooling and remote working in the pandemic, I gave in to my seven-year-old’s requests and let him have half an hour of screen time in the evenings. But being a Black parent who was once a Black girl and well aware of the horrific absence and equally horrific stereotypical and token representations of Blackness on television that I have seen, I told him that he could only watch a TV show if it had a main character who looked like him. Within that guideline, he could choose whatever age-appropriate show he wanted. He wanted cartoons, and so he began his search with those constraints. But within five minutes, he came to me in tears. We had subscriptions to Amazon Prime and Netflix, and he had searched both for Black characters in kids shows. He had found nothing.

 

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“But where are the cartoons, Mom?” he asked. “And why does the story have to be so sad with people dying?”

I thought about my son’s questions. I had no answers, only the same questions about entertainment for Black adults, and the saturation of images of Black pain rather than Black joy. The heaviness I feel in my soul when yet another studio markets its slave film (or other narrative of historical Black oppression) as the “Black movie” release of the year is the same heaviness in my son’s soul at these kid’s movies that traffic in Black sadness and Black death.

 

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My son knows now, like many Black kids in America do, that if you try to look for yourself onscreen all you will see is erasure, sometimes stereotype. He knows to look for himself on the page instead. You can find some beautiful things there, if you try.

 

 

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great illustration on why representation matters (and how it has changed so much from the 90s/early 00s)

I made this point earlier. I'm not saying The Proud Family and Jackie Chan Adventures were the high point of the culture but I remember cartoons with better representation (vs. the token minority in a show of primarily white characters) being less niche when I was growing up. (Not saying it didn't take a while... there was a period when I identified with Snow White because at least she had black hair.) Remember Happily Ever After: Fairy Tales for Every Child? There are some shows if you search "Representation Matters" on Netflix but really not that many targeted toward the 7 and under demo though it's also a poorly curated selection and there might be other stuff that isn't appearing. The main show is something called Motown Magic. There's a show called Bookmarks that seems a little Reading Rainbow-ish but it's very short episodes. The Princess and the Frog is about adult characters. I don't know where Spiderman: Into the Spiderverse ended up but it's probably too mature for a 7-year-old. What content exists seems to be for tweens. Like, you need to be old enough to watch A Wrinkle in Time. You can find Moesha and Sister Sister now but they aren't cartoons. When is that Hair Love show premiering?

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Fwiw, W. Kamau Bell has said his daughter likes Doc McStuffins, but I haven't watched it so I don't know more about it than that.

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1 hour ago, possibilities said:

Fwiw, W. Kamau Bell has said his daughter likes Doc McStuffins, but I haven't watched it so I don't know more about it than that.

Yeah he strongly campaigned for it to continue. Wrote an article about it, tweeted about it and has a bit in it in his special: Doc Mcstuffins is the greatest tv show of all time.

Edited by biakbiak
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On 3/26/2021 at 11:17 PM, angora said:

I have a complicated relationship with Bulletproof. I'm happy for Noel Clarke and Ashley Walters for making/starring in it, and good for them for pushing to make it happen. They're both great - cool, funny, dynamic, and they play fantastically off of one another. But on the other hand... so many civil liberties violations. ....

Agreed. I'm happy that they were able to make this show with two Black leads, but I'm not into the show itself for similar reasons.

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19 hours ago, aradia22 said:

I don't know where Spiderman: Into the Spiderverse ended up but it's probably too mature for a 7-year-old. What content exists seems to be for tweens. Like, you need to be old enough to watch A Wrinkle in Time. You can find Moesha and Sister Sister now but they aren't cartoons. When is that Hair Love show premiering?

For what it's worth, our five-year-old adores Into the Spiderverse - if you mention Spiderman to her, she immediately sees Miles Morales rather than Peter Parker!

In the UK, CBeebies has a lovely little cartoon series called JoJo and GranGran in which the main characters are a little Black girl who is looked after by her Black Windrush generation grandmother while her parents work, and it is a really lovely Black-centred show for under-5s. There isn't much else for kids that's so Black-centred, though.

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For what it's worth, our five-year-old adores Into the Spiderverse - if you mention Spiderman to her, she immediately sees Miles Morales rather than Peter Parker!

That's so cute! I'm unsure how children handle death if they haven't experienced it in their lives yet. Like, there's more nuance to 

Spoiler

my beloved uncle was shot sacrificing himself for me but also chose to work for evil people

vs. this Disney villain is unquestionably evil and died falling off of something. There's a lot of pain and heartbreak in Spiderverse, which is a part of life, but I think it's also good for kids to have shows like Doc McStuffins. I watch this youtube channel called "Defunctland" that has a series about old children's TV shows. Why isn't there Dragon Tales, Between the Lions, The Big Comfy Couch, etc. but with characters who look like the kids who might be watching? I feel like Sesame Street is still the standard. 

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The cast and showrunners of the upcoming Kung Fu talk a bit about (among other things) what the show means for Asian-American representation in TV in this WonderCon @home virtual panel:

 

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And it is mentioned that this is probably the first drama with a predominantly Asian-American cast on network TV.

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On 3/27/2021 at 7:13 AM, aradia22 said:

When is that Hair Love show premiering?

No time frame yet but it looks to be premiering on HBO Max. Kinda sucks because I don't subscribe to that but I may to support this show.

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22 hours ago, aradia22 said:

That's so cute! I'm unsure how children handle death if they haven't experienced it in their lives yet. Like, there's more nuance to 

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my beloved uncle was shot sacrificing himself for me but also chose to work for evil people

vs. this Disney villain is unquestionably evil and died falling off of something. 

There are two deaths in Into the Spiderverse - Peter Parker and Uncle Aaron. Both are sad, but pretty much on a par with the deaths of Mufasa in The Lion King or Granma Tala in Moana, for instance, both of which are aimed at very young children. Honestly, if a kid can handle Disney movies, they can handle Into the Spiderverse. There's a lot of visual humour, which makes our 5yo laugh like a drain. She absolutely adores Miles Morales, who I suspect will always be the ultimate Spiderman in her eyes, with Gwen coming a close second.  Even the parallel universe storyline didn't faze her. She just added a bunch of scientific jargon to her vocabulary!

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 I know that Little House on the Prairie was supposed to have progressive re the depiction of minorities, but despite those 'Very Special Episodes' in which the Moral Compass Ingallses stood up for and defended them to Mrs. Oleson and other strawman bigots, they didn't truly integrate them. How so? Well, Joe Kagan (the late Moses Gunn) managed to obtain his own  farm outside Walnut Grove but was only barely allowed to be in the congregation in the beginning of the episode in which Walnut Grove agrees to 'adopt' the blind school- and never gets seen in their church again! Oh, and Hester Sue starts out as having run her own blind school that merged with Adam and Mary's but she also barely got seen in the Walnut Grove congregation andnever seen  at Oleson's Mercantile (despite being sighted) - and after  the Blind School relocated to Sleepy Eye (after the Fire), Hester Sue WAS seen in a local church there. But as soon as Adam Kendall regained his eyesight and insisted he was too brilliant to waste his immense talents teaching blind children(and ignored that Mary still wanted to teach them), they not only scattered these students to the wind (who they had considered their de facto children) without a backwards glance but Hester Sue wound up becoming Mrs. Oleson's cook rather than having her continue teaching in any capacity [surely SHE would have been a better teacher than either Laura or Etta Plum] (and Joe Kagan ,who had followed the school to Sleepy Eye, somehow dropped off the face of the Earth after supposedly reconciling with Hester Sue in a comical near-wedding episode).  Oh, and it should be mentioned when they were debating whether to let Mr. Kagan be a Walnut Grove congregant, ML showed up wearing a KKK sheet for a prank that got preserved in the blooper reels. Since Mr. Landon was the show's boss and there was no higher up court of last resort, what choice did the late Mr. Gunn have but to try to pretend to laugh at that instead ? Yes, I know that the late Mr. Landon was notorious for onset pranks but that truly was WAY beyond the Pale of how to treat one's employees.

It wasn't better for Native Americans. There was one 'Very Special Episode' in which a one-shot widowed farmer's daughter returned as the widow of a Native American chief and herself having borne a biracial son- and the Moral Compass Ingallses spent the whole episode trying to get the old farmer to be fair to his daughter and grandson instead of rejecting them and, by the episode's end, he does cave in and insists that his grandson be registered at the Walnut Grove School under his late Native American father's [translated] surname. Terrific, but NONE of the three are ever seen again and there are no Native American or biracial students in Walnut Grove apart from these Very Special Episodes. 

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The author recounts how tough it is to find current kid's shows featuring black children at the center and how her young son took heavy notice of this. 

Circling back, I just found out this LEGO Friends show exists. No idea what it's about or how balanced the screen time is between characters but the character designs are cute. I think both boys and girls should watch shows with female protagonists but maybe your daughter would like it @Llywela

 

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Lee Daniels is "adapting" Lawrence Otis Graham's Our Kind Of People a book about the black upper class.  I put adapting in quotes because the plot of the Daniels series is:

Single mom Angela Vaughn risks it all and moves her family to Martha’s Vineyard with hopes of taking her natural hair care line to the next level by infiltrating the African American elite in Oak Bluffs.  But she soon discovers a secret about her past that just might change her position and shake up her life and this influential community forever.

But the book is a non-fiction look at the black bourgeoisie a sort of an "oh by the way black people also have blue blooded snobs whose wealth is generational and have summer homes in Martha's Vineyard and inter-marry".   I read the book years ago and it was just a peek behind the curtain of black old wealth, colorism, social clubs, a disdain for the nouveau riche (black people who made money from athletics or entertainment) etc. etc. There is no plot per se, so it feels like he is borrowing the name and the background.

If he does intend to highlight some of the themes of the  book as a backdrop, then this is one case where the casting is going to have to be intentional about colorism, considering being able to pass the paper bag test is one of the themes in the book.

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1 hour ago, DearEvette said:

But the book is a non-fiction look at the black bourgeoisie a sort of an "oh by the way black people also have blue blooded snobs whose wealth is generational and have summer homes in Martha's Vineyard and inter-marry". 

Reminds me of the Juneteenth episode of Donald Glover's "Atlanta".

 

 

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I put adapting in quotes because the plot of the Daniels series is

Like many adaptations, it looks like he will be creating his own stories and characters but maybe using real life examples as plot points or background for the characters and/or organizations featured.

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by infiltrating the African American elite in Oak Bluffs

That line kind of reminded me of Revenge. Then again:

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But she soon discovers a secret about her past that just might change her position and shake up her life and this influential community forever.

Maybe she finds out one of the Rich and Mighties is her real biodad? In any case, sounds like this show could be a good fun frothy soap, if they decide to go that direction.

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Maybe she finds out one of the Rich and Mighties is her real biodad?

That was my first thought. I feel like there were so many versions of this soap at one time but it was like outsider character used to date one of the rich characters and comes back into that world as a mom/dad and then their kid starts the same pattern (usually with the son/daughter) of their old flame. Just based on Empire, whatever the secret is, I don't think it'll take forever to be revealed, unlike the idiocy of The Blacklist where from the first trailer everyone guessed because it was super obvious.

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13 hours ago, aradia22 said:

Circling back, I just found out this LEGO Friends show exists. No idea what it's about or how balanced the screen time is between characters but the character designs are cute. I think both boys and girls should watch shows with female protagonists but maybe your daughter would like it @Llywela

 

😄 Thanks for the rec. We have watched a bunch of Lego shows, although the kid's taste skews more toward superheroes. 😉 She is currently very into Marvel's Secret Warriors on Disney+, which has a very diverse cast - Black, Asian and Latinx. This has backfired slightly because she is now desperate to have dolls of all the characters, but they are not available on this side of the Pond! (She is my niece rather than my daughter, btw, but because her parents are unable to look after her, she spends part of the week with me and part with her grandparents)

I should add, we are a white family, but I want her to grow up seeing diversity as the default, I don't want her to only see white faces in her shows or to only play with white dolls. We live in a massively multi-ethnic city and that should be reflected on our screens. It never was when I was growing up - in the school I went to almost 60% of the kids were non-white, and I never saw any kid shows on TV reflecting that lived experience. I will say, CBeebies is pretty good in that regard these days. All their science shows are fronted by women rather than men, striking an early blow against a culture that sees STEM as a default male thing, and most of their live action shows at least try to have a diverse cast (e.g. the show Apple Tree House, which centres around three children: one Black, one white, and one Asian). They have JoJo and GranGran, a cartoon centred around a loving Black family - and our kid adores that show, seeing no difference whatsoever between herself and JoJo, since they are both little girls who love adventure and are looked after by a grandmother. But now she is 5, she is growing out of CBeebies, which is aimed at pre-schoolers, so we are branching out and exploring other media.

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While maybe not quite as diverse as Marvel's Secret Warriors, a good superhero cartoon that I would recommend would be Justice League from the 2000s, and it's sequel, Justice League Unlimited. John Stewart was the Green Lantern on that team, but he was never a token minority. As one of the original 7, he had just as much screen time as the rest of the characters, had just as many episodes focusing on him, and a nice love story with team-mate Hawkgirl. Even when the cast late expands to dozens in the Unlimited version, he is still a major player plus there are appearances by other POC heroes as well (Vixen, Mr. Terrific, Fire, Dr. Light). The series does also feature strong female characters as well, and best of all, can be enjoyed by adults as well as by kids.

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1 hour ago, Hiyo said:

While maybe not quite as diverse as Marvel's Secret Warriors, a good superhero cartoon that I would recommend would be Justice League from the 2000s, and it's sequel, Justice League Unlimited. John Stewart was the Green Lantern on that team, but he was never a token minority. As one of the original 7, he had just as much screen time as the rest of the characters, had just as many episodes focusing on him, and a nice love story with team-mate Hawkgirl. Even when the cast late expands to dozens in the Unlimited version, he is still a major player plus there are appearances by other POC heroes as well (Vixen, Mr. Terrific, Fire, Dr. Light). The series does also feature strong female characters as well, and best of all, can be enjoyed by adults as well as by kids.

Thanks, I will look out for it. 🙂 There do need to be girls - having exhausted all the DC Superhero Girl books for her age (and collected all the dolls, obvs), I bought her a DC Super Friends book, which she read and seemed to enjoy, but then turned to me and said, with disgust, "Are these all boys? Where are the girls?" 😄 

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@Llywela I don't read comics myself (I find the format annoying chasing little word bubbles around to follow the plot and it's very expensive habit in the long run) but I've heard a fair bit about comics. However, I don't know which titles are age appropriate... Ms. Marvel (Kamala Khan), She Hulk, Birds of Prey, obviously Wonder Woman, Batwoman, the Fables series (though I think that one's for adults), Squirrel Girl, etc. X-Men could also be good if there's a run of Storm comics. You could always look for the Miles Morales stories or even the Gwen Stacy ones. It's just tough because even if you manage to find content that isn't objectionable for children, I feel comfortable saying that the vast majority of female characters are sexualized in the way that they are drawn. Comics are definitely a medium where you need to look through it before passing it off to a child.

I did google and find two characters I've never heard of that might be worth looking into... Bandette (Dark Horse Comics) and Shadoweyes (Iron Circus Comics).

Back to TV, I've heard okay to positive things about the Hilda, Carmen Sandiego, and She-Ra cartoons on Netflix but I don't know how they are in terms of racial representation. My initial assumption is... not amazing.

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20 minutes ago, aradia22 said:

@Llywela I don't read comics myself (I find the format annoying chasing little word bubbles around to follow the plot and it's very expensive habit in the long run) but I've heard a fair bit about comics. However, I don't know which titles are age appropriate... Ms. Marvel (Kamala Khan), She Hulk, Birds of Prey, obviously Wonder Woman, Batwoman, the Fables series (though I think that one's for adults), Squirrel Girl, etc. X-Men could also be good if there's a run of Storm comics. You could always look for the Miles Morales stories or even the Gwen Stacy ones. It's just tough because even if you manage to find content that isn't objectionable for children, I feel comfortable saying that the vast majority of female characters are sexualized in the way that they are drawn. Comics are definitely a medium where you need to look through it before passing it off to a child.

I did google and find two characters I've never heard of that might be worth looking into... Bandette (Dark Horse Comics) and Shadoweyes (Iron Circus Comics).

Back to TV, I've heard okay to positive things about the Hilda, Carmen Sandiego, and She-Ra cartoons on Netflix but I don't know how they are in terms of racial representation. My initial assumption is... not amazing.

Thanks! We're not into proper comics yet - there are early readers available, designed as an introduction to the format for young children just learning to read, so that's what our girl has been introduced to. Those are written to be age-appropriate for a 5-year-old! She loves Hilda on Netflix, but you are right, it is pretty much exclusively white (ETA thinking about it, one of Hilda's friends is Black, but that just takes us back to the trope of the token Black sidekick, standing out against the rest of the white cast). She's seen She-Ra but didn't really get into it. Haven't tried Carmen Sandiego yet. Which circles us back around to where this conversation began: how hard it can be to find genuinely diverse media for children to enjoy. There are diverse shows out there, but they are very outnumbered, so you do have to make an effort to look for them, unfortunately.

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@Llywela If you have Disney+ keep an eye out for the upcoming Ms Marvel. I think it might be right in her wheelhouse.

 

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1 hour ago, xaxat said:

@Llywela If you have Disney+ keep an eye out for the upcoming Ms Marvel. I think it might be right in her wheelhouse.

 

Keep in mind the release date is likely to be late 2021, or if other things push it, even later. They haven't even released a proper trailer yet (whoever titled that clip above mistitled it), just a production preview. The filming is apparently about half done--the first half was in Atlanta and reportedly the second half will be in Thailand. 

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13 hours ago, xaxat said:

@Llywela If you have Disney+ keep an eye out for the upcoming Ms Marvel. I think it might be right in her wheelhouse.

 

Already excited for this one, although I've not told the kid about it yet in case it turns out to be a bit old for her. She's been in love with Ms Marvel ever since she saw a single page about her in a Captain Marvel early reader! Ms Marvel is one of the main characters in Secret Warriors and is one of the dolls she would dearly love to have, if only they were sold over here (our superhero doll collection is already vast). The live action show has so much potential, I really hope it does well.

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Keep in mind the release date is likely to be late 2021, or if other things push it, even later. They haven't even released a proper trailer yet (whoever titled that clip above mistitled it), just a production preview. The filming is apparently about half done--the first half was in Atlanta and reportedly the second half will be in Thailand. 

Do you know if it was derailed by the mild internet controversy or just covid-related filming issues? For reference on controversy...

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The #FixMsMarvel uproar began on December 7, 2020, when the Twitter fan account MsMarvelNews made a number of posts regarding several casting rumors that they deemed inappropriate. These included Zenobia Shroff (best known for playing Priya Ullah in The Affair) as Kamala Khan's mother, and Yasmeen Fletcher (best known as Chandra in the film Upside Down Magic) as Kamala's friend, Nakia Bahadir; a Turkish Muslim who attended the same Mosque as Kamala's family. The management of MsMarvelNews was unhappy with the idea that Kamala's mom might be played by a non-Muslim Indian actress and that Nakia Bahadir might be played by a half-Caucasian Christian actress.

The posts also attacked actor Matt Lintz, best known as Henry on The Walking Dead. Lintz was rumored to be playing Bruno Carrelli; a friend of Kamala Khan from the comics. Lintz was attacked for being a supporter of Donald Trump on his social media, although that support seems to be limited to liking several Tweets Trump had made. It should be noted, however, that Lintz has denied being a Trump supporter on his personal Twitter account, and that the original MsMarvelNews Tweet regarding him has since then been deleted.

The final post involved Andrew Brodeur; a 23-year old actor best known for his role as Will in the movie Tall Girl. Brodeur was rumored to have been cast as Josh Richardson. According to MsMarvelNews' post (which linked to several other Tweets made in 2019) Brodeur was expelled from his college following multiple Title-9 cases. Several other people on Twitter confirmed that Brodeur was a serial sexual harasser who made multiple women uncomfortable with his behavior.

https://screenrant.com/fix-ms-marvel-controversy-trend-mcu-castings-explained/

Note: I cut out the parts of the article that referenced possible plot spoilers

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The management of MsMarvelNews was unhappy with the idea that Kamala's mom might be played by a non-Muslim Indian actress and that Nakia Bahadir might be played by a half-Caucasian Christian actress.

Oh, Jesus.

Wait, am I allowed to say that regarding this issue?

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This ad is so weird. Patrick Mahomes is biracial. He has been very public in identifying himself as a black man. And they chose Paul Rudd as his "double"?

 

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7 minutes ago, xaxat said:

And they chose Paul Rudd as his "double"?

I don't know much about stand-ins but I thought it was about getting people of the same size/shape but not necessarily race/gender.  Kind of like stunt people.

I could be wrong about that, though.

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4 hours ago, xaxat said:

This ad is so weird. Patrick Mahomes is biracial. He has been very public in identifying himself as a black man. And they chose Paul Rudd as his "double"?

 

Yes, the joke is that their doubles don't look anything like them. And I believe this was a superbowl ad, so, you know, celebrity cameos.

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BTW, CW's Kung Fu premieres tonight; NY Times article about the show: https://www.nytimes.com/2021/04/06/arts/television/kung-fu-cw-asian-cast.html

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While “Fresh Off the Boat” was the rare sitcom to focus on an Asian family, and Asian-led series like “Never Have I Ever” and “Wu Assassins” are available on streaming platforms, there has never been a broadcast drama with a predominantly Asian-American cast. “Kung Fu” will become part of the slight but steady advances that Hollywood has recently seen in Asian representation onscreen, especially after the international success of films like “Parasite,” “Minari” and “Raya and the Last Dragon.”

“Representation, as much as it is about us being able to see ourselves onscreen, is more about being seen by other groups of people who are not Asian,” Liang said.

“We talk about it all the time — we talk about the historic nature of what we’re doing, and we also try not to think about it too much because of how much pressure it brings on,” Liang said. “We just want to make our community proud.”

The cast is also well aware of the significance of this multigenerational show during a time of increasing attacks on people of Asian descent, seemingly spurred by the pandemic. While they are careful not to frame a TV drama as any kind of solution to racist violence, they do note that the relative lack of Asian actors in mainstream entertainment has led to a kind of cultural invisibility.

“Representation, as much as it is about us being able to see ourselves onscreen, is more about being seen by other groups of people who are not Asian,” Liang said.

“The lack of representation 100 percent contributed to the horrifying things that are going on right now against Asians because we’re not a part of a lot of people’s narrative,” she continued. “They don’t see us in their communities; they don’t see us on TV. They forget that we are part of the world.”

 

Edited by Trini
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Nothing like "your just representing about half of the world's population (or at least a third) to American network tv viewers, no pressure".

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Run the World will premiere on Sunday, May 16 on Starz at 8:30/7:30c. The Starz comedy hails from creator Leigh Davenport (Wendy Williams: The Hot Topic) and showrunner Yvette Lee Bowser (Living Single). It stars Bresha Webb (Marlon), Amber Stevens West (The Carmichael Show), Corbin Reid (How to Get Away With Murder) and Andrea Bordeaux (NCIS: Los Angeles), the show will follow four professional women in their 30s who live in Harlem and also happen to be best friends.

The series also stars Tonya Pinkins (All My Children), Stephen Bishop (Imposters), Erika Alexander (Living Single), Tosin Morohunfola (Black Lightning), Jay Walker (Grey’s Anatomy) and Nick Sagar (Queen of the South).

https://tvline.com/2021/04/08/run-the-world-trailer-starz-season-1-premiere-date/

tbh, it doesn't look that great from the trailer but Younger ended up being a mess pretty quickly and if I had Starz, I'd probably watch this.

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There's a show called Losers on Netflix. One episode is on Surya Bonaly. I was too young to have an understanding of her career. (Like I only learned about Tonya Harding/Nancy Kerrigan much later even though I grew up watching Michelle Kwan). Even if you did follow her career, I think it's a worthwhile watch. The episodes are very short. I would have watched an entire 2 hour movie. Honestly, why has no one made a movie about Surya yet?

There are some things that are skimmed over that probably would have gotten more time in a movie (e.g. her adoption, her relationship with her first coach, her relationship with her mother who then became her coach, her media coverage). The episode gives a brief overview of her life and mainly focuses on how she was treated by skating judges and what happened at specific competitions. I understand why they reached out to Scott Hamilton and Tara Lipinski but I am SO glad they brought in Stacia Brown as a counterbalance. Scott and Tara gave necessary context but the only white person interviewed who actually empathizes with her truly is Peter Biver (who is revealed at the end to be her fiance). 

The conversation around Surya feels so familiar thinking about Venus and Serena Williams and Misty Copeland and possibly Gabby Douglas (I don't follow gymnastics that much). It feels particularly worse in something like figure skating and ballet which have very particular (WEIRD) ideas of idealized femininity. So when black female athletes are critiqued, the racism really jumps out when people talk around "femininity" and "grace" and "beauty." Of course people are going to say 'your lines aren't elegant' or 'your program wasn't smooth' and not 'I don't like the way your body is shaped' or 'your athleticism challenges my ideas of gender and womanhood.' 

They try to put a positive spin on it but I don't know that it really ends "happily." That said, I did not clock any objectionable language (I might have missed something) so I think this would be appropriate for all ages. And there are little cartoon interstitials. 

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On 4/7/2021 at 1:17 PM, xaxat said:

This ad is so weird. Patrick Mahomes is biracial. He has been very public in identifying himself as a black man. And they chose Paul Rudd as his "double"?

 

It's a joke, not a real casting.  It's supposed to be perceived as ridiculous. 

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"All I'm saying is... Black Widow should have been played by a black woman or a spider"

"FACTS!"

Aww.... Black Lady Sketch show is back April 23rd.  I am ridiculously excited!

 

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That show makes me want to get HBO. Instead I'll be working my way through whatever's on Netflix and Amazon Prime. Has anyone watched the Astronomy Club show? I just found it on Netflix today while browsing.

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Giant Misfit

Keep your comments to race and ethnicity as they relate to TELEVISION SHOWS.  If you would like to discuss social issues without TV context, please visit the Social Justice topic in Everything Else. 

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