You can’t make this shit up (“Alice in Arabia”)

You ever see something so fucked up that you can’t even get mad?

It’s one of those things that, if somebody told you about it, you wouldn’t believe it unless you saw it yourself. And if you saw it, you’d just stand there staring at it like, “This is so fucked up that I wanna keep it as a specimen for further study. I wanna pin it to a board and dissect it.”

That’s how I feel about Alice in Arabia.

Here’s how ABC described it:

“Alice in Arabia” is a high-stakes drama series about a rebellious American teenage girl who, after tragedy befalls her parents, is unknowingly kidnapped by her extended family, who are Saudi Arabian. Alice finds herself a stranger in a new world but is intrigued by its offerings and people, whom she finds surprisingly diverse in their views on the world and her situation. Now a virtual prisoner in her grandfather’s royal compound, Alice must count on her independent spirit and wit to find a way to return home while surviving life behind the veil.

(And the English major in me notes the parallel between Alice in Arabia and Alice in Wonderland. That’s right–countries with lots of Brown people in them, especially Arabs, are real places in the real world with real people in them. No, they are nonsensical realms akin to an alternate universe where cakes turn little girls into giants and people play croquet with fucking flamingos and Johnny Depp can breakdance.)

Get this: this was not satire. This was not a joke. This was not a market survey designed to test the waters for what audiences like and don’t like.

A real live human being–not an alien, not a robot, not a mermaid who recently switched out her fins for legs–decided that this was a good fucking idea. Even more than that, that human being convinced other real live human beings that this was a good fucking idea. And they didn’t even need to make an offer the other people couldn’t refuse!

Pro-tip: If you have an idea for a story about people of color, and it sounds like some shit straight outta The Onion or The Colbert Report, DON’T FUCKING DO IT!

 

Equinox – Cautiously Cautious… With A Side Of Caution

Hello everyone, and in this video I discuss my concerns about DC Comics’ newest character, the Canadian Cree teen superheroine, Equinox.

My main concern boils down to DC Comics’ past racial failures, so anything like this just makes me awfully damned cautious.

For added context, here is an article from the CBC talking about Equinox.

You need to watch “Princess Tutu” ASAP

It’s no secret that I’m a huge anime nerd. I admit this without shame. My taste tends to run toward feature-length anime and limited-run serial anime over How Do They Get People To Make All These Episodes serial anime (Inuyasha being one exception).

Alas, whether because of maturity (ha!) or because there is something with contemporary anime that just lacks a certain something, my anime tastes pretty much grind to a halt after the late 90s.

But then a friend told me that I needed to watch Princess Tutu.

Y’all. Y’all. Go see this shit.

For real. Watch Princess Tutu. Right now. Queue it on your Netflix, find it on YouTube, order it on Amazon. Do what you have to do to see it.

You can find a description online. Princess Tutu even has its own wiki (SPOILER ALERT). Don’t let the name and the weird bits fool you. The story is actually very mature and extremely complex, and they achieve this without gratuitous T&A or blood and gore (there is quite a bit of verbal, emotional, and physical abuse in a few episodes). And then there’s that not-so-small falctor of having a lot of layered female characters–none of whom are necessarily cis–who actually fucking interact with each other and not just to talk about men or be on some Mean Girls type shit.

And did I mention the themes of this shit? Princess Tutu is a story about stories, about the power storytelling has, and the ways in which using that power responsibly or irresponsibly can affect people. If you are a writer, an artist, or a storyteller of any kind, especially one who has any sense of integrity about your work, you need to watch this shit. Princess Tutu is also about the importance of emotions, about how  we need even the “bad” feelings like sorrow and disappointment to be whole.

You ever saw something so good that everything else compared to it just pisses you off? That’s Princess Tutu for me. Princess Tutu is why I give Once Upon A Time so much shit. You wanna talk about subverting and deconstructing fairy tales, Princess Tutu pirouettes around Once Upon A Time without breaking a sweat (I’ve often thought to myself that Princess Tutu is the story that Regina deserves, but she’s unfortunately stuck on ABC).

Y’all need to watch Princess Tutu.

Solidarity Is For White Fangirls. Only.

Hello everyone and welcome to another video on white privilege and fandom that I all hope you enjoy. This is only a little bit of what happens in fandom but it’s indicative of what happens on an almost daily occasion, especially when it comes to characters who are from a marginal class, such as being a POC, LGBTQ, disabled, or intersect across them all.

For additional reading, here is the link to the wonderful takedown of Michelle Coltee by Melissa Harris Perry that I mention near the beginning of the video:

Michelle Obama A ‘Feminist Nightmare?’ Please.

Brain Food – Episode 30!

Well, after too long a time, I bring to you another episode of Brain Food, wherein I review the most excellent and fun graphic novel, The Many Adventures of Miranda Mercury!

This book has been nothing but a great fun read and a wonderful experience, and you should all go out and buy it!

In fact, go the the Miranda Mercury website and check out the latest news from the writers!

“Inuyasha” is the shit and you can’t tell me no different (or, how “Inuyasha” is better at representing women than the vast majority of mainstream Western television shows)

It’s no secret that I’m a big fan of Rumiko Takahashi’s manga-cum-anime Inuyasha. I mean, they had me hooked at “a feudal fairy tale.” But what keeps me coming back to this series, aside from the great story and amazing characters, is how progressive it is when it comes to its portrayal of women.

When it comes to dynamic, multi-dimensional portrayals of women, Inuyasha embarrasses the fuck out of most mainstream American television.

Continue reading

Good bye, OUAT…

In this video, I explain just why I’m not watching this show anymore… trust me, you won’t either after watching this.

At least I’ll always have the first season.

For those of you who are curious, the Walter White Sliding Scale of Villainy was created by a good friend of mine, and you can read her post about it here.

Read it, it’s good education.