Friday, January 23, 2009

Extras In Their Own Stories

Avatar: The Last Airbender continues its racist, colonialist and willful appropriation. PoC's, specifically Asians, can't be leads but THEY ARE DESPERATELY NEEDED AS PROPS.

Aang Ain't White has more news on how there are casting calls for extras of color - ahem - Ethnicity (You're asked to dress casually or in the traditional costume of your family's ethnic background.)

This is wrong. Currently I'm not sure I really have the energy to do more than say how wrong this is. This is wrong like Jackson Rathbone thinking being tan is the same thing as being Inuit. Wrong, like the people who wanted to co-opt Neil Gaiman's Anansi Boys - except make them all white. Wrong like white people thinking that not burning a cross on a lawn means they're fundamentally good people.

[ I'll do a post sometime later on how the men who committ(ed) lynchings were considered good men by their peers and society - strong fathers, loyal providers, upstanding citizens - but it didn't make them any less hateful and lethal to Black Folk and other Minorities. ]

Meanwhile my protest letter to TBTB for Avatar just came back in the mail, so I have some more letters to write.

PS: If you're an animator, cartoonist, illustrator or otherwise a professional that Hollywood could or does employ, Derek Kirk Kim has a separate petition going on in response to the rampant disrespect.


ETA: Over at Aang Ain't White a whole set of people are suddenly declaring that having a protest against the movie for the Philly casting would be the action of extremists! AKA:

OMG WTF! Tone people! TONE! It's just a movie! Why are you being so angry! Protests are for things like war! Why are you going about it this way? Why can't you keep writing nice calm letters?!!

*points up to the mention of letters being sent back*

Imbroglio vs ... I don't even know what to call the Avatar Fuck Up. But in the end it's all PoC's are too emotional and one misstep away from getting violent. Are these people seriously thinking a peaceful protest about a movie is going to end up with riots? Then again they're probably not aware of just who the real extremists are whenever PoC feel the need to march AND shout.


  1. On the plus side, reading DKK's post makes me go "OMG! Authors whose work I like who don't want to punch me in the face! How nice!"

    ... on the minus side, it's rather sad I have to be happy about that. Which is not to undermine their (DKK and Gene Yang) awesomeness, because go them!

    But yeah. SO MUCH FAIL.

  2. Oh wait, reading more closely now, and unhappy with the way DKK is talking about how if were another race, everyone would be making a fuss (ah hahaha. Excuse me while I bitterly laugh).

  3. Oyceter:

    I don't begrudge him that reading of things. I really don't. It would seem obvious to other minorities that such and such could not possibly happen or so and so could not possibly be ignored. And I think I'm more understanding of it re: our conversation about visas and critical mass.

    It's just the sad truth, as seen in the past - now 11 days - that critical mass can be somewhat irrelevant when those within the mass are discounted as not worth the time. A critical mass of nothing is still nothing.