Angry Brown Kill-Joy

| February 7, 2017 | 7 Comments

I could not tell you when the last time I actually enjoyed something was. I’m talking about consuming for consumption’s sake, taking in a piece of art (in any sense of the word) at its face value. Case and point: A few Thursdays ago, I was sitting in a movie theater waiting to see Bridget Jones’s Baby (don’t you dare judge me). As the previews rolled before the movie, I felt bored. And this is coming from someone who has a standing date with themselves to see a movie every Friday night. This is coming from someone who paid actual money to go see the third (third) Bridget Jones movie. But something about seeing those trailers back to back, it reminded me of something. It reminded me of…

photo credit: Nick Saltmarsh Three slices via photopin (license)

Just a bunch of white bread | photo credit: Nick Saltmarsh Three slices via photopin (license)

Granted, there was a whopping total of one GOC (guy of color) in Bridget Jones, and he was mainly used for comic relief, but I’m looking at the big picture here. I can’t enjoy most movies or TV shows without thinking about how there is a distinct lack of roles going to nonwhite actors. Or, if there are people of color filling major roles, I find myself paying extra close attention to how the writers portray them (i.e. Are they a walking stereotype? Are they being used as nonwhite mouthpieces for the ideals of their white writers? Are they being used to quell the collective conscience of the show’s white audience?). Stand-up comedy is a lot less funny (particularly stand-up of the dude-bro or white feminist variety), and don’t even get me started on celebrities who have sworn themselves against “political correctness.”

If you don’t want to click on those links, the message essentially boils down to this: comedians (and, by an expansion of the point, folks who churn out our sources of entertainment) blame millennials and those pesky “social justice warriors” for killing comedy as we know it. Because if you’re not laughing at a joke about date rape or racism, you’re not living, my friend. The real problem here is that people are beginning to become more aware of the media they consume and its potential effects. Rather than just accept the media we’re being given, marginalized voices have made it clear that things like whitewashed casting, queerbaiting, and general white-Hollywood fuckery will not be tolerated. But I’m sure if I was used to seeing my face and my people represented 25/8, I would be a little perturbed by the shifting tides as well.

Featured photo credit: I Believe I Can Fry Saltine Toffee: Saltine Crackers, Salty-Side Up via photopin (license)

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Category: featured, TV and Movies

Vicki Saeed

About the Author ()

The brash speaking voice of a sea-hardened sailor and the softness of a velvet child. Two types of Brown and constantly talking about it. Catch me knitting in the sun and talking about social injustice/horror movie plot holes.

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  1. Heather says:

    I think Anonymous is on to you. What do you know of art/media, you brown, sun-catching, always knitting feminist. Look it up on the Google!

  2. Anonymous says:

    I think you’re really missing the point of art/media and are very misguided about art and the industry surrounding it.

    • Vicki Saeed Vicki Saeed says:

      If you would be so kind as to enlighten me as to what the point of art/media is, I would be eternally grateful. I was under the impression that art and media are the means by which we express ourselves and inspire, and that glaring whiteness is not a prerequisite for entering the industry.

  3. Your Biggest Fan says:

    MAAM, this featured image. This post. This white bread. All of it is magic. Thank you for existing and keeping the necessary levels of media cynicism alive <3

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