erasure of Asian people and characters is very deep rooted in American media and goes all the way back to conception—don’t let it persist!
Important even when you’re excited about this movie!
good points, but please for the love of god, realize that the original marvel comic was a fucking horrible racist disaster of the most unacceptable calibre that rode on the tail ends of the 90s ninja craze and the budding 00s anime craze.
I still have no idea why Disney chose to adapt this MASSACRE of a comic book series to film, but what I have heard is that they’ve cherry picked the best parts of it and created something great from what was absolute dregs before.
And honestly I think a movie portraying a much, much more racially diverse -even if it is fictional- world, where everyone lives unquestionably together and showing what that might just be like, is a pretty good goddamn thing that I think could stand to be shown and portrayed to kids of this generation. You aren’t seeing the white kids appropriating anybody’s culture, you’re seeing a bunch of kids who are friends and race is not a divisive factor between them. I sort of think, in media, portraying/normalizing these sorts of things is really important and I think that is what BH6 is doing here: normalizing these sorts of situations.
When I say “normalize”, I mean, in media, and especially media for impressionable children, things that could be anything from diverse/inclusive groups of people from different races, to things like different genders, or different body types, being shown as “normal.” You put them on screen and tell a kid “this is normal.” and this can be shown in a way to goad children into doing what advertisers/media producers want, but it can also be used as a force of good. It’s about time we start using this media influence to spread stuff like this, instead of “buy this toy, wear this type of clothes, girls behave this way and boys have to do this or they aren’t normal”.
baby steps, man. There was a shitstorm when Laika released a movie with an openly gay character. But when they did the same thing a year after for the Boxtrolls, only the stupid old people got pissy about it. See? It’s starting to become normalized.
In the future I wouldn’t be surprised if it’s now easier for more diverse casts to exist, not just because it’s now been done once, but because the people, like me, who work in production, can point to things like this and say “see? They did it in Paranorman, the world didn’t explode. It’ll be fine.” or “see? the movie didn’t have to change for a bunch of different races to fit in fine. It’s not a big deal.” It’s been normalized. Somebody has to set a precedent. Wouldn’t it be great if shows were as diverse as this, not because they had some sort of agenda to, but just because that’s… yknow, normal?
:/ sorry that you consider representation of race “an agenda”
White washing is a serious problem and has had detrimental effects on the psyche of minorities ESPECIALLY when it comes to children’s movies. (Like how now everyone thinks POC never existed in Medieval or Renaissance Europe??? They were LITERALLY EVERYWHERE, some of which who had strong political, financial, or military positions, but they never really make their way into even bg characters in Medieval movies/shows like Game of Thrones, Beauty and the Beast, Hunchback of Notre Dame, Hercules, etc, do they? ) Whether or not the original material was offensive Disney had an opportunity to take it to a really healthy place.
What white kids need to be learning isn’t just how they can exist and coincide with poc, but that poc fucking exist without white people having to be there.
That not every space is for them, that not every space SHOULD HAVE to include them, because they often don’t, usually BECAUSE OF WHITE PEOPLE.
Because we as poc are CONSTANTLY FORCED to experience white-only spaces in the media. we are CONSTANTLY having to be explained into the plot, CONSTANTLY having our race be the TOPIC, the main point of our characters, instead of just existing in spaces that are safe for us and where WE ARE THE DEFAULT.
If Disney was actually trying anything that would be progressive and helpful, the setting they would have chosen would not have been the appropriative shit storm that is San Fransokyo (really? You don’t find using SACRED Shinto shrine gates, which are supposed to be used as an entrance to a sacred place, OFFENSIVE as BRIDGE DECORATION?? That’s basically like hanging representations of jesus all over a bridge) whether or not it’s “less racist and appropriative” than the original source material DOES NOT MEAN IT ISNT STILL RACIST AND APPROPRIATIVE AS FUCK
This post isn’t serving an “agenda” it’s serving to educate people who exist in their comfortable bubble of agreeing with the white default and to show them they are not the only ones who want to enjoy portrayal in media, and that they should be allies in criticizing media alongside their underrepresented poc.
If Disney didn’t want to be so freaking offensive, they could have easily set the movie in regular San Francisco and made reference to their ACTUAL EXISTENT large asian and black population, and their spaces (which DO exist largely apart from the white population of San Fran, it’s called segregation, only this segregation occurs because of gentrification and other things that keep minorities in poverty stricken areas and not a direct order from the govt to purposefully segregate based off race, although in a lot of situations theyre pretty much a word or two away from doing so)
By creating San Fransokyo Disney essentially said “Oh a place that has Asians Blacks and Whites?? That can’t possibly already exist? So let’s make up a place!!Oh but let’s make it strictly related to Tokyo so we don’t have to include all those other asians and keep the Japanese Aesthetic and Robots and all that Cool Culture Junk those kids are into now a’days!”
It’s like if media only ever represented white people with tea and doilies or wrapped in American flag cloaks. Sure it would be funny once or twice, but when that’s the ONLY representation you’re ever allowed, ever given in 90% of all media, it gets old. And it gets old fucking fast. You can only fake a smile or a laugh for so long. Oh but they’re in the movie, look there’s like three and one of them is even British!
I would be highly SURPRISED and severely disappointed if several artists at Disney weren’t offended or didn’t try to speak against the problems in this film during production.
I’ve never been more happy than now, where marvel is trying so hard against waves of racist sexist fans to include more women and poc in their comics because I’ve never seen myself, a queer, non-cis, situationally white-passing poc, fully or consistently represented in some way as the hero, as the target of affection, as the kid who had something special that could change the people or circumstances around them. ANd I’m and in NO WAY NEAR THE MOST UNDERREPRESENTED MINORITY, like south asian, indian, middle eastern and indigenous peoples are what I can think of right away, even more so those of them with darker skin. (Such as possibly the Ainu character that could have been in this film, who although from Japan suffer from lots erasure and colorism within the asian community, as well as other things related to being an indigenous person)
Representation isn’t only about the RACE of the person represented. It’s about all the things it means to be that race. It’s about the subtleties, those within the way we talk with each other, in what we choose to talk about with each other, in the struggles we go through, in the ways we live, in the decisions we make in the situations we find ourselves in.
Without creating defaults within the specific stories told, we lose the perspective of the protagonist, everything begins to lean on a Western White perspective because we’ve all been forced to experience that as the default all our lives, even in stories that are supposed to be for us. (Pocahontas being one of the largest offenders of this in my opinion)
I am not, repeat NOT saying everyone shouldn’t see this movie (like the op) Disney deserves to know and understand the impact of Hiro’s adorable furry-browed amazingly voice-acted presence as a main character is something we not only want but desperately need, especially from a company that many people all over the world read as a major international symbol on top of being an American one.
However as much we can enjoy this we have to be vehemently and unapologetically critical of it, because we as poc and more importantly, as people, we deserve better.
So please, we are extremely tired of this extremely overused uninformed and extremely classist argument that does nothing to add to the conversation other than to trivialize the poc experience into something we should just get over and be fine with being treated as so called equals. Because we aren’t. WIth all the movies in the world we won’t be. Not until the percentages of America’s minorities are represented more accurately in media as directors, writers, artists, actors, politicians, cook show hosts, whatever it might be.
I am a Person, not a goddamned agenda.
Also baby steps are never a good metaphor I mean c’mon do you see how often babies just fall down backwards and roll a couple feet and wait a couple seconds before they start bawling. Giant media companies are giant babies if they fall down while taking baby steps we’ll end up back in the 60’s who wants that I can’t wear booty shorts in the 60’s it’s practically illegal.