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Thread: Lena Dunham's Girls

  1. #16
    I haven't watched Girls, but apparently it's really, really white. White people! Everywhere! Anyway, if you aren't white and you're a little sore about the whole lack of representation in TV and film and all the things, one of the staff writers from the show has some snark for you.



    God, minorities. Give them an inch, right?

  2. #17
    she said destroy Lágnætti's Avatar
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    Wait ... she was serious? I read that as her being facetious as hell because nobody could possibly be that ... could they?

    Anyway, a show about four annoying white women in NYC with mysteriously awesome finances and no minorities in sight, like anywhere? Sound awfully familiar.

    ETA: OH I SEE. I SEE.

    I found the Jezebel article and she's for real! Christ, where do these people come from (rhetorical question, I know exactly where they come from and I wish they'd fuck off back there)? This is a writer who referred to taking a dump as taking Obama to the White House. She probably IS aggrieved that there's a film somewhere about black women that doesn't acknowledge the tragic plight of rich, white self-absorbed trust fund kiddies with dubious 'careers' in 'media'.

  3. #18
    fluid, affectionate, chaste, mature Mackerel's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Whappo View Post
    I haven't watched Girls, but apparently it's really, really white. White people! Everywhere! Anyway, if you aren't white and you're a little sore about the whole lack of representation in TV and film and all the things, one of the staff writers from the show has some snark for you.
    God, minorities. Give them an inch, right?
    ...sigh.

    What upsets me especially about all this is that these stupid shows are purportedly set in NYC, right? Diversity Capital of the US? Can't take one step without hearing a different language spoken? But somehow when yet another show set in that area is heralded for being "daring" and "real" and the "voice of a generation" it's always with the unspoken caveat that, well, it's real only if we suspend our disbelief and go along with the writers' premise that NYC is made up of mostly white people.

    I have some aspiring tv writer type liberal friends based in the NY area who hang out with a diverse circle, and when I read their semi-autobiographical NYC script and see all of their characters are all mysteriously white without exception it's like, dslfjkskjkfdjk..!!! To be honest, it feels downright hurtful to me, like they're willfully excluding me from their created reality. It makes me wonder who they see when they hang out with me or any of their other non-white friends - do they just round me up to being a white person in their heads? I'm tired of nodding along and pretending that it isn't completely fucking absurd to have Brooklyn, which is only one-third white, look like this:


  4. #19
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    Looking at that picture, it struck me they've all got more or less the same hair colour and style too. No blondes, redheads, curly, black or short-haired girls in Brooklyn, either. Mid-mouse brown straight long hair folks only. It must be a Thing. An aesthetic. I have the horrible feeling someone somewhere thinks it's aspirational. I hate that.

    Carol, are your writer friends conscious of the racial make-up of their characters? I mean, is a deliberate choice because they think TV only wants scripts about lily-white folks, or do you think they just subconsciously default to it?

  5. #20
    she said destroy Lágnætti's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kari View Post
    NO SHE DIDN'T. ARE YOU SERIOUS. OMG.
    Well, I'm absolutely sure she didn't intend to be offensive. It's just that turds are brown and Obama is too. You know. Some people are just LOOKING to be offended.

  6. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kari View Post
    I mean. No. Just...no.
    Do you think she's trying to be hipster-edgy? I only ask because THAT SHOW and what kind of moron would DO that?

  7. #22
    fluid, affectionate, chaste, mature Mackerel's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by julius ebola View Post
    Carol, do your writer friends conscious of the racial make-up of their characters? I mean, is a deliberate choice because they think TV only wants scripts about lily-white folks, or do you think they just subconsciously default to it?
    I definitely think it's partly a subconscious thing and partly there's a fear, among white writers creating non-white characters, of bungling it up in some way that offends people. I was left feeling confused and wondering what was going through her head when I saw she had written a role that sounded uncannily like me, down to personality and school and everything.... only her name was Caitlin and she was blonde.

    Kari, you make a good point with casting - you don't always need to go out of your way to "explain" or "justify" your character's race, they can just as easily be cast in a role that doesn't mention race at all. That's the whole point. *glares at Lena Dunham.*

  8. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by Carhole View Post
    I definitely think it's partly a subconscious thing and partly there's a fear, among white writers creating non-white characters, of bungling it up in some way that offends people. I was left feeling confused and wondering what was going through her head when I saw she had written a role that sounded uncannily like me, down to personality and school and everything.... only her name was Caitlin and she was blonde.
    I see, Caithole. I see.

  9. #24
    Quote Originally Posted by Carhole View Post
    Good turnout at the Joanna Newsom cosplay convention this year huh.

    eta: I'd legit like to know. Do people honest to god send out casting calls describing characters as specifically white on a regular basis? Because LOL. I sort of expect it but god.

  10. #25
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    According to the Jez article, they certainly specify the races of the help. Help isn't white, just so you know.

  11. #26
    thundering blissful towards death stillorbiting's Avatar
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    I have nothing to say about the whitewashing that hasn't already been said. But I do feel the need to say this: what the hell is with that girl second from the left? Why is she wearing sweater leggings and strappy sandals? That is horrific.

  12. #27
    Quote Originally Posted by Kari View Post
    You have to respect the demographics of PLACE.
    To an extent, but I think that can go too far. I don't care, for example, that Idris Elba got to play a Norse god (cool beans!), but some Thor fans thought it was "wrong" to cast a black man in such a role. Ha! Okay, comic nerds!

    Quote Originally Posted by julius ebola View Post
    According to the Jez article, they certainly specify the races of the help. Help isn't white, just so you know.
    It's interesting that they also mention the diversity of The Office and Parks, because something that's a LITTLE OFF to me is that Indian Americans tend to fill the role of zany, kooky airheads on sitcoms. Mindy Kaling and Aziz Ansari are two of the best actors in US comedy television right now, and I know even casting actors of Indian or Pakistani descent is a massive leap forward for primetime, but I'm fearful of the kind of comedy tokenism that could plague actors for years to come (remember Outsourced, the short-lived and incredibly woopsy-daisy show whose central conceit was that EVERY CHARACTER was the funny South Asian, except for the white guy who played straight to them?).

  13. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by Whappo View Post
    To an extent, but I think that can go too far. I don't care, for example, that Idris Elba got to play a Norse god (cool beans!), but some Thor fans thought it was "wrong" to cast a black man in such a role. Ha! Okay, comic nerds!
    Oh yeah, I remember that. Some people managed to get exercised about the black Roman soldier in Centurion too, even though that had some basis in actual history given the Roman Empire did extend into North Africa.

  14. #29
    a little more time, endless time Savannah's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Whappo View Post
    It's interesting that they also mention the diversity of The Office and Parks, because something that's a LITTLE OFF to me is that Indian Americans tend to fill the role of zany, kooky airheads on sitcoms. Mindy Kaling and Aziz Ansari are two of the best actors in US comedy television right now, and I know even casting actors of Indian or Pakistani descent is a massive leap forward for primetime, but I'm fearful of the kind of comedy tokenism that could plague actors for years to come (remember Outsourced, the short-lived and incredibly woopsy-daisy show whose central conceit was that EVERY CHARACTER was the funny South Asian, except for the white guy who played straight to them?).
    That is a frustrating element of this "transition" or whatever you want to call it. Often when you do see non-white, cis, hetero, able-bodied characters, they are neutered and/or relegated to side roles, but the show still gets praised for including them at all. I remember when Glee first came out, it was one of the worst offenders for patting itself on the back for its diverse cast. Only it was all so disingenuous because the main plot instantly zeroed in on the white hetero couple.

    Anyway, the comments from the Girls writer are totally ridiculous. They are making it hard to justify watching this show, even though I love a lot of things about it. Bleh.

    I do wonder what it is about Girls that has crystallized all these criticisms about race and privilege. I mean, when I watch mainstream entertainment, I do it under the assumption that 80% of the people involved are just there either because they're ridiculously attractive ("white" for most studios, I'm sure) or they know someone in the business. I wonder if it's because no one really saw this show coming and it feels like it was thrown in everyone's faces.
    Last edited by Savannah; 04-19-2012 at 07:26 PM.

  15. #30
    fluid, affectionate, chaste, mature Mackerel's Avatar
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    oh dear, more sordid dramz....

    this is some disgruntled former co-worker of arfin's at buzznet who obviously hates her and wants you to know that she calls people fags (in the mean way.)

    this is the incoherent entry she typed in defense of herself after people went apeshit over her obama poop comment.

    I guess this is what happens when you leave a trail of ill-advised and offensive blog entries on your climb to fame - when you finally get famous you get hounded for it. I suppose she's right in that none of us have to watch the show/read her. In any case my curiosity has unfortunately been thoroughly drained by all this internet tmi, though I'm open to changing my mind if it somehow drastically overturns my expectations. white trash - I definitely think for me her obnoxious persona just hits a personal nerve because she reminds me of a specific type of person I see everywhere here that gets on my tits in a serious way, i.e., that trust fund ivy league girl in high waisted rompers and sunglasses who spends her days tweeting ironic racist jokes in a cafe.

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