(Well, it’s the obvious headline.)
So last night M mentioned that the Oscars Pre-Game Show was on, saying jokingly that we should be watching it, and I said “Yeah, let’s!”, expecting it to be sort of fun vapid sparkling pop-culture nothingness.
Imagine my surprise.
There’s sometimes a fine and funny and challenging line between being a jerk and parodying jerkiness. Seth MacFarlane was nowhere near that line last night; he was way, way out on the “being a jerk” side.
Parody and satire are great when used against the powerful, or turned inward on ourselves. But I think it’s all too common that someone will think “hey, this stuff is great and gets laffs, but if I use it against the powerful or the audience I might get in trouble, and I’m sure not going to use it on myself, so I’ll just use it on women or minorities or people with funny accents or something”. And that’s the nasty territory that we were in last night.
And somehow the worst thing about the “jokes” marginalizing women, sexualizing a little girl (who was right there in the audience ffs), trivializing eating disorders and abusive relationships, poking fun at people with funny accents, and so on, is that they weren’t funny.
I don’t think I’ll ever look at the talking dog and the baby with the English accent the same way again. (That is this same guy, right?) If nothing else, I’ll have my hegemonic-analysis goggles on…