Have you seen any changes in the industry in the issues of race, the issue of being a woman, and now being a woman over fifty?
Oh shit. Miss Alfre went there.
Which is exactly where she should’ve gone. Where everybody should be, really.
Black Actresses and their Academy Awards!
5 out of the 6 actresses won for Best Actress in a Supporting Role, Hattie McDaniel being the first to win for her role in Gone with the Wind. Halle Berry is the only actress to win for Best Actress in a Leading Role, winning for her role in Monster’s Ball
2nd nomination in 65 years, potential 1st win.
I mean …
Yeah, they’re Mediterranean European in the author’s imagination. The author did say that he is pretty much perfectly okay with readers imagining his characters however they want to, he didn’t say for example that readers who see them as Middle Eastern or South Asian or North African are wrong, so obviously he won’t be going around crowing about how Tumblr fans are delusional crazies.
Here’s my only thing: I never saw the Martells as specifically ONE real-world equivalent, but I did see them as visibly OTHER relative to the Andal Westerosi. What I think about not casting POCs in the roles is that it’s a lost opportunity in terms of Hollywood practices. Now that this is a television show, it’s no longer JUST Martin’s book, it’s now an entry in the history of Hollywood too.
Anyway, I’m not as upset about the Pedro Pascal casting as some but I don’t like how people who are upset about it are being treated. We can all, I think, agree that the Dornish are probably not as white as the rest of Westeros. What there seems to be different attitudes on is how derisive one can be towards people who want to see themselves represented in fiction. To some people this is obviously a point of much ridicule and derision, something to be righteously condescending about, which totally weirds me out and disappoints me.
ICYMI: Actor Armie Hammer, star of The Lone Ranger, gave a ridiculously tone-deaf interview in April to explain why the character of Tonto is not racist. Around the same time, Disney began a PR campaign to highlight their “sensitivity” towards American Indians and indigenous peoples in general.
Since the movie’s recent premiere, it seems Disney’s whitewashing media blitz may have been all for naught. Critics have panned the film as racist, boring, never-ending, or just plain bad. In two days, the $250 million dollar film grossed a paltry $19.5 million, setting it up to be one of the biggest flops in Hollywood history.
But I’m just going to say this: When the star of the flick trots out to the national media at the start of his media tour and basically says, “Every Indian I talked to loves it, so suck it haters” — yeah, your movie has a problem beyond a terrible script and absent plot.
Hey there, I’m sorry for not answering this before. I actually have stronger feelings about the fandom reaction to other fans’ reaction to the casting than I do about the casting itself, if you wanna know the truth. No doubt westeros.org will have itself a good laugh at all the Screaming Tumblr Idiots who cared about a concern like racial representation, which I think is tacky. I don’t know if I feel qualified to talk about it, I’m a POC but my POC-ness is very obvious and uncomplicated, since I’m not at all white-passing. That’s why I haven’t really said much, I don’t have my intuition to fall back on because I’ve never been in, for example, your position.
I would rather have the Martells be visibly brown to some extent or other, but maybe the other Martells will be? So I’m not totally despondent, and I’m not sure that I think that B&W are purposely setting out explicitly to make the Martells white, though I do think they’ll sacrifice certain things for casting expediency and I think that’s damaging (their shooting schedule may shorten the time they have to look for people, IDK honestly). I don’t know one way or the other what kind of issues Pedro Pascal faced due to race and I wouldn’t presume to make assumptions, but I do think it’s interesting that when the news was announced, some people started saying things like “They can use makeup to make him browner” — I think a lot of people saw him as browner and many many years have gone by with the majority of artistic representations showing him as some shade or other of brown, fewer (though some) as fair, and I don’t recall anyone ever going “Making Oberyn brown is noncanonical!” soooo. But I’m not sure if Pedro Pascal looks white to me either, sometimes he looks a little browner and sometimes a little paler.
So yeah, again, I’m not really sure what I think about the casting itself? I’ve been more disappointed in how fandom treats people who care about racial representation than anything else. But I feel like I should defer to people who know more about being latin@ than I do about Pedro Pascal. I’m pretty ignorant and I’d rather listen than talk.
in response to fans’ questions and comments on his blog. Read the full text HERE. What follows is not the complete response but it is most of it.
"I try to make ALL my characters fully-fleshed and human, whether they are secondary or tertiary characters, minor players, or spearcarriers who only have one line. I grant you, I may not always succeed, given that I have literally thousands of characters, but the intent is there. I should also point out that I am not done writing the books. If you’ve read my novels, you’ll know that sometimes a character who seems very minor in one book assumes great importance in later volumes… and sometimes even becomes a POV. Let me hasten to add, this does not mean I am promising to make Salladhor Saan a POV character… but it does mean I am not done with him. (Of course, in the books Saan is white, a Lyseni of Valyrian descent, so that may not help much).
Speaking of Valyria… right from the start I wanted the Targaryens, and by extension the Valryians from whom they were descended, to be a race apart, with distinctive features that set them apart from the rest of Westeros, and helped explain their obsession with the purity of their blood. To do this, I made a conventional ‘high fantasy’ choice, and gave them silver-gold hair, purple and violet eyes, fine chiseled aristocratic features. That worked well enough, at least in the books (on the show, less so).
But in recent years, it has occured to me from time to time that it might have made for an interesting twist if instead I had made the dragonlords of Valyria… and therefore the Targaryens… black. Maybe I could have kept the silver hair too, though… no, that comes too close to ‘dark elf’ territory, but still… if I’d had dark-skinned dragonlords invade and conquer and dominate a largely white Westeros… though that choice would have brought its own perils. The Targaryens have not all been heroic, after all… some of them have been monsters, madmen, so…
Well, it’s all moot. The idea came to me about twenty years too late.
In any case… I hope no one heaps any vitriol on you for stating your views. I may not agree with all you’ve said, but I respect where you’ve coming from, and you’ve been nothing but polite. You do not deserve abuse for that, and if anyone tries to heap some on you here I will delete their posts (I have no control over what happens elsewhere, alas, but I can at least keep my own blog civil).
FWIW, though, I do not think David, Dan, HBO, Nine Gold deserve the vitriol being heaped upon them elsewhere on the internet either (NOT in your post, let me stress). And I especially don’t like to see poor Pedro Pascal getting abused, before he’s even delivered a line. By all reports he is a terrific actor who gave a great reading at his audition. THAT’s why he got the role.”
"About “Mediterranean," for sure. Yes, one can argue that anyone living in a country that borders on the Mediterranean Sea is a Mediterranean, but that’s not the way the word is usually understood. In common usage, it refers to the countries of southern Europe, and not even all of those. France is not usually spoken of as a Mediterranean country, despite the Riviera. Tunisia, Libya, Algeria, and Morocco are usually spoken of as North African countries. Egypt, though it is also in North Africa, is more often referred to as Middle Eastern or Arabic. I live in New Mexico, which is about as far south as a state can be and still be part of the United States. And yet New Mexico is not part of “the South," not counted as a “southern state." Virginia, considerably further north, IS a “southern state." These terms are not meant to be taken literally.
Yes, I pictured the “salty Dornishmen” as looking Mediterranean (I also had the ‘sandy Dornishmen,’ fwiw), but if some of my readers want to picture them with darker skins, that’s fine. The picture in the author’s head and the picture in the reader’s head don’t always match, and really, there’s no reason they should. That’s one of the great things about books. The reader is part of the process. No two readers see the character the same way.
That does not work in television, for reasons too obvious to belabor. Casting is a long, tough process, and all kinds of factors come into play. The important thing is finding the best actor. Now, granted, there are a lot of good actors out there. You try to pick the best one for your own show, from the pool of those you can actually get. (A much smaller pool than the ones the fans draw their wishlists from). We have had many casting controversies with GAME OF THRONES. Nikolai Coster-Waldau’s nose was too big to be Jaime. Lena Headey was insufficiently blonde to be Cersei. Peter Dinklage was too tall to be Tyrion. Gwendoline Christie was too pretty to play Brienne. Yet here we are now, and it’s impossible even for me to imagine any one else in those roles.
I expect the same will be true of Pedro Pascal. A year from now, I hope, Pascal will BE Oberyn Martell.
I do agree that the hostility and anger that this issue has triggered has been deeply disturbing. Mind you, I have seen it from both sides. Some pretty nasty things have been said about David, Dan, me, and even Pedro Pascal, who hasn’t done anything more than audition for a role and win it. Which doesn’t excuse the crap being thrown the other way by those who support the casting. It would be nice if we could discuss these issues calmly and reasonably, in an atmosphere of mutual respect, without the vitriol… but in this age of the internet, that’s more than anyone can expect, especially on cesspools like twitter and tumblr.
Let me conclude with this. While I stand by my previous descriptions of Prince Oberyn and the salty Dornish, and support the casting of Pedro Pascal, I hate to disappoint any of my readers, and I am sympathetic to their desires to ‘see themselves’ in the text.
The text — the NOVELS — are actually the only thing I control, but I can say, with some certainty, that there will be people of color therein. Salladhor and Xaro are white in the books, true, but I have some interesting new characters coming forward (not viewpoints, admittedly, but cool, I hope) you may like, and there will be more of Strong Belwas, Moqorro, Missandei, Irri, Jhiqui, the bloodriders, many other Dothraki, Chataya and Alayaya, Jhalabar Xho, and the captain and crew of the Cinnamon Wind.
They may not all come to good ends, mind you, and some will be deeply flawed, and some will be minor players… but they will be there, in living color, for good or ill.”
- George R.R. Martin, July 6-7, 2013
This is a write-up of part one of W.org’s two-part video review of Game of Thrones’ third season. This isn’t meant to be an attempt to stir up shit or fandom drama or say that All Good Fans Endorse What I Endorse, so if you disagree with them, or me, that’s fine (and you can say so too, it’s not a big deal). I just find it easier to have written things to respond to and some people said they’d find a write-up interesting. Just because this post is long doesn’t mean it’s meant to be Official Meta or Authoritative Fandom Reporting or anything so keep that in mind when you reblog okay kids? I apologize in advance if I misrepresent anyone’s opinions.
Critics’ Reactions to the Final Season 3 Scene in Game of Thrones
Surfed Google News looking for what reviewers thought about the White Lady Jesus scene.
“It’s kind of weird that the show decides to rely on the slightly racist, definitely cliche stereotype of hordes of adoring brown slaves worshipping their white liberator.” - Kate Walsh, Indiewire
“…the messianic tint to Danaerys’ brief appearance takes on a weirdly racist and pro-colonial overtone (look at those poor, dark savages and how much they love their blond savior!)” - Todd Brown, Twitchfilm
“…her being surrounded by a worshipful mass of people she’s saved who are decidedly, er, browner than her is really frakking weird. I’m not saying there’s malicious, racist intent or anything, and some of the slaves are probably just tanned white people. But as an image, I found it really offputting.” - Rebecca Pahle, The Mary Sue
“I think we’re supposed to feel tense and apprehensive awaiting their response to her setting them free, but I’m just kind of bored. No surprise – they accept her, calling her “mother.” She crowd surfs while her dragons fly above the crowd. Also, she’s very white and all the slaves definitely aren’t and so maybe this is racist? I’d call for discussion but this is the internet so better not.” - Dr. Improbable, The OutHousers
“During Game of Thrones‘ first season, the show faced criticism that it was racially… not super sensitive when it came to portraying the Dothraki, who were largely treated as Klingons noble savages…Now, Dany has become a straight-up conqueror—an outsider who swoops in with her dragons and eunuchs to show other societies how they’re doing things wrong. Which is where things start to feel a little dodgy: The final shots of this season were supposed to be rousing, but they felt weird.
There was Dany, seriously the Whitest Woman Ever, crowd-surfing on a bunch of heretofore unseen and uncharacterized brown people, all of whom had been enslaved and helpless before she showed up? And they’re lovingly calling her “Mother”?” - Erik Henriksen, Wired.com
“Yes, this is problematic. The optics on this scene are really bad, which I can see you have noticed, because you have eyes. Problem one is that there aren’t very many people of color people on this show to begin with, and problem two is that when there are, they tend to be acting out “tribal” stereotypes and/or cast in the role of slaves. And this final scene featured largest crowd of brown faces we’ve ever seen, lifting the world’s blondest woman up as their messiah and praising her for saving them from bondage. It’s like George W. Bush’s secret fantasy of how he thought the invasion of Iraq would go for him (including the blond wig).
“If you’ve never heard of the White Savior phenomenon in media, wherein a fictional white outsider appears to heroically save fictional people of color from problems they can’t solve on their own, there’s more information here. Or you can just take a screenshot at any point in the last minute of the show, since it’s pretty much textbook. And that’s another problem, while we’re counting problems: I feel like I’ve seen this trope so many times before that it feels emotionally flat and boring, especially in comparison to her astonishingly badass siege of Astapor.” - Laura Hudson, Wired.com
“Also, I can’t even express how uncomfortable her last scene (the last scene of the season) made me feel. This show has always had issues with race and unfortunately, by having hundreds of faceless brown people lifting up a young, white blonde woman and calling her “mother,” showrunners are far from correcting them. It was Greyworm (and friends) who liberated the city. Can’t he get some love?”- Madeleine Davies, Jezebel.com
The Khaleesi of previous seasons, and even previous season three episodes, seemed to care little for titles that others were so eager to attach to her. But it’s that blissful smile, that obvious Christ pose while being hoisted above the crowd, her blonde hair and pearly whiteness shining upon a sea of trodden-upon brown people that lead one to wonder if all this savior stuff is finally going to her head. - Gabriel Ruzin, Screen Invasion
“The final image is still that of a white woman being embraced by the poor slaves she set free, and on a show that has been validly criticized for its lack of diversity in its main cast, ending a season with that scene was a questionable choice. We understand why the writers thought it was a good direction to go — viewers needed some real hope after the Red Wedding — but there were probably ways to direct it that would have taken the sting out of the visual.” - Rebecca Martin, Wetpaint
“So, um, did anyone else think it was a little weird to have a bunch of dusky brown people reaching out to the blonde white lady and proclaiming her their savior? Dany’s crusade to free slaves and whatnot is admirable, sure, but that scene seemed to say “Hooray! The nice white lady saved us!” Kinda got a weird vibe. Was anyone else made ever so slightly uncomfortable?” - Joe Streckert, Portland Mercury
It’s an image that many commentators found troubling, given Game of Thrones‘ overwhelming whiteness, and the presentation of many non-white people as barbarians, deceptive slavers, or mindless slaves. - Alyssa Rosenberg, Think Progress
“And not to end on a sour note — because I did think “Mhysa” was a tight, elegant episode — but did anyone else watch the final scene outside Yunkai and think, ‘Hmmm, am I really looking at a pretty white lady being worshiped by thousands upon thousands of adoring brown people?’” - Nina Shen Rastogi, New York Magazine
“The show’s previously been careful to maintain a heterogeneous look for most of the cultures Daenerys encounters in her travels through the eastern continent of Essos, so the uniformly brown skin tone of the freed slaves worshipping the blondest possible savior figure was surprising and disconcerting – doubly so since, in the books, much is made of just how many different kinds of people had been forced into slavery by Yunkai and then freed by Dany when she took the city. This uncomfortable contrast kneecapped what could otherwise have been the most purely uplifting and cathartic moment in the series so far. Plus it gave the episode its title and was, you know, the final shot of the season – a rough one to go out on. “ Sean T. Collins, Rolling Stone
Six years ago, I had a deal with Lifetime Television to develop my bestselling novel, The Dirty Girls Social Club, as a TV series. It soon became clear that the relationship wasn’t going to work, when two executives insisted that my pilot outline “wasn’t Latin enough,” because it told of middle class, educated American women who happened to be Latina.
“This reads as if it were about me and my friends,” complained one executive in disgust.
I didn’t know how to respond, so I asked her what she’d prefer.
“Why don’t we make the girls debating whether or not to date men in prison? I know that’s what Latinas talk about, just like it’s what black women talk about.”
people always want to talk shit about us when we complain about fucked up representation…but these are the conversations happening in board rooms. like, jesus fucking christ. fuck this planet.
Representation Visualization: Time to Wash Those Men Right out of our Hair
Mainly reblogging for the prime Broadway reference from the blogger who wrote this caption ^^^^
- America’s Funniest Home Videos
- Anger Management
- Are You Smarter Than A Fifth Grader
- Baby Daddy
- Best Friends Forever
- Big Time Rush
- Blue Mountain State
- Breaking Bad
- The Client List
- Comedy Bang! Bang!
- Dancing With The Stars
- Eastbound and Down
- Enlightened (Creator Mike White wrote all the episodes)
- The Firm
- Free Agents
- Game of Thrones
- Free Agents
- A Gifted Man
- Good Luck, Charlie
- Gossip Girl
- Gurland On Gurland
- Happily Divorced
- Hart of Dixie
- How To Be A Gentleman
- The Insider
- Jane By Design
- Kickin’ It
- Lab Rats
- Last Man Standing
- The League
- Make It Or Break It
- Man Up
- Mike and Molly
- Napoleon Dynamite
- Once Upon A Time
- One Tree Hill
- The Protector
- Ray Donovan
- State of Georgia
- Stevie TV
- Two And A Half Men
- Web Therapy
- Workaholics I
- Workaholics II
The link also has a list of shows with no women writers