Friday, November 27, 2015

Must not joke about ambiguous sexuality

The trailer for the forthcoming Ben Stiller film "Zoolander 2" has outraged some members of the transgender community.

The film is a satire of male models, and one of the characters is a model named All. Played by Benedict Cumberbatch, All is of indeterminate sex. In the trailer All is asked by model Derek Zoolander (Stiller) and fellow model Hansel (Owen Wilson) if he or she is male or female. "Do you have a hot dog or a bun?" Hansel asks. "All is all," All replies.

Soon after the trailer was released, a petition to boycott the film was launched. It has garnered over 11,000 signatures. The petition (errors in original) reads:

"On November 18th, the much-anticipated trailer for the sequel to Ben Stiller’s hit film ‘Zoolander’ was released.

In the "Zoolander 2" trailer, an androgynous character played by Benedict Cumberbatch is asked by Zoolander and Hansel if he is a ‘male or female model’, and if they ‘have a hot dog or a bun’. Additionally, Cumberbatch’s character is clearly portrayed as an over-the-top, cartoonish mockery of androgyne/trans/non-binary individuals. This is the modern equivalent of using blackface to represent a minority.

If the producers and screenwriters of Zoolander wanted to provide social commentary on the presence of trans/androgyne individuals in the fashion industry, they could have approached models like Andreja Pejic to be in the film. By hiring a cis actor to play a non-binary individual in a clearly negative way, they film endorses harmful and dangerous perceptions of the queer community at large"



Anonymous said...

I guess no one remembers androgynous Pat from SNL. BFD.

Anonymous said...

The queer community is a very small percentage of the population.
They do not have a constitutional right to not be offended; there is also obviously something wrong with their brains.

Anonymous said...

Tell them to go back and write their complaint in plain English and not this cis bullshit stuff if they expect anyone to seriously consider their complaint. You can't invent words and expect the rest of the world to agree to them. That is living in fantasy land, oh wait, they already do don't they. There is male, female and confused. Anything else is psychotic.

Anonymous said...

People as people shouldn't just be defined (or even define themselves) merely by their "sexuality" whatever that is assumed to be. Haven't we advanced at all from the "gender wars" of the 19th and 20th centuries?

Use the Name, Luke said...

"Haven't we advanced at all from the "gender wars" of the 19th and 20th centuries?"

Sadly, the answer is apparently "no." If anything, it's worse today.