Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Nostalgia Chick and Needs More Gay: Gay and Lesbian Culture and Disney

  So, as a huge fan of Nostalgia Chick, I was PUMPED that she was going to team up with Rantasmo for her new episode to talk exclusively about gay culture in media.

So, my thoughts on the review:
  --I'm not thrilled that Nostalgia Chick says she normally looks at videos through a feminist lens and was now going to shift to a queer lens.  Beyond the fact that I'm in an academic environment that also draws on a web environment that says "feminist narratives include race-related, queer-related lenses" and so I don't feel the spheres should be separate in media analysis, Nostalgia Chick herself has treated her reviews under a feminist lens that also include race-related critiques, like in her reviews of Bay movies, The Craft, TLC, um that one movie with Justin Timberlake and Sarah Michelle Geller, and Coal Black and De Sebben Dwarves, and a bunch of other stuff.  And this isn't just a case of NChick miswording and meaning to say that she will be looking exclusively through a queer lens, either, because I can't really recall her spending much time on queer visibility or heteronormativity.  And I'm a big fan, so I think I'd remember.  In any case, I hope she includes this crucial perspective in her future critiques, whether Rantasmo is present or not.
 --I'm really pleasantly surprised that Disney is a pretty good place of employment in this day and age for gay and lesbian employees and customers--I'd never even heard of these Gay Days!  Of course, it is upsetting that Disney is torn between this market/group of fans/sentiment and socially conservative market/fans/sentiment, and so Disney has to kind of keep things "under the table", as NChick says.  With that in mind, however, I've gotta whoop for joy and say step in the right direction, even if it is a problem and their media is still uber heteronormative.
--I also feel that Rantasmo and NChick needn't have said they were looking as Disney through an LGBT (never mind all the other letters) lens because...that "T" part especially gets no visibility in this critique.  It's pretty much all about gayness, and even bisexuality doesn't get much time if any in this critique.  And it's not like there's no material to go on for trans especially--I mean, look at the lyrics to Reflection, man!
--I'm really glad that the critique also mocked the hell out of the "sassy gay friend" trope.  I'm really tired of the media and consequently people in real life thinking: "Gay guy!  He shall be fashion expert, wise, insightful, be a colorful spirit guide to lovelorn (white) girl!"
--My friends and I have noticed, too, that often one has a foppish villain to make them seem a deviant, which is villainous, but also feminine and vain, which is non-threatening.  It was interesting to consider the fop character as a good guy as well, that the nonthreatening nature can also be used to make a friend.  Of course the concept of "acting girly makes one nonthreatening" is troubling, but this whole discussion of the fop (I hadn't known there was a term for this character) just kept making me think about my constant struggle with what to make of in the characters in...well, Transformers and especially Transformers: Prime (JEEZUS, Knock Out and Starscream, tho!).  I can't figure out if their heavily-implied gay identities are mostly good things or mostly bad things.  My friend has recently dragged me into the fandom and we've been talking about the fandom under a queer lens (not just gay, but also asexual) for months and...oh God do I smell thesis.  Maybe I'll post about Transformers next in this blog.

No comments:

Post a Comment