Film Corner: Battleship and White Male Privilege

[Content Note: Privilege, Gun Violence, Robbery, Sports Violence, Racism]

People, it is time to talk about white male privilege and how it is being used as a "default" form any time a licensed movie comes down the pike in search of a plot. Because I am sick of it.

We watched Battleship this weekend. And: Okay? I knew it would be bad going in. Seriously, if anyone responds to this post saying it's Battleship what did you expect of course it would be bad then they are going to be introduced to Hektor the Moderating Dog, because yes, I knew it would be bad. But I expect more from my Bad Movies than white male privilege leaking all over the place; I was hoping for nothing worse than campy dialogue and silly CGI. And I won't apologize for holding movies -- even Bad Movies -- to a higher standard than this.

So. We watched Battleship this weekend because Husband wanted something nice and campy for me to yell at in good fun. It's like having Mike Nelson and the bots in the house, only ALL THE TIME. Only I wasn't available to yell in good fun because I was instead sitting on the couch slack-jawed in astonishment at how thoroughly this movie revels in white male privilege. Because what the flip.

The movie starts with Taylor Kitsch (Alex) and Alexander Skarsgård (Stone) bitterly lamenting the fact that Alex has no job, no apartment, and no transportation -- apparently largely because he despite being really smart and really handsome and really white and really privileged and really educated and really AWESOME, he doesn't feel the need to actually earn anything in life and prefers to have everything handed to him on a silver platter. And while it may seem like I'm being unfair in that characterization, I can assure you that it is based on the full two hours of this privilege-fest movie.


In order to impress the Smoking Hot Woman who has walked into the bar and asked for a chicken burrito, Alex runs to the nearest gas station slash convenience store, harangues a tired Asian-American convenience store employee for refusing to reopen the store for his White Male Privilegeness, and then proceeds to break into the store while causing a tremendous amount of property damage which is apparently based on a real life incident and about which I give not one fuck.

Alex then runs back to the bar while chased by police sirens and manages to place the chicken burrito in the hands of the Smoking Hot Woman before the police taser him, which is in itself a manifestation of White Male Privilege because I'm pretty sure that Alex has never once had to worry that the police might shoot him with real bullets instead of with taser darts. Because privilege is comfy like that. And also Because Privilege, the woman -- Brooklyn Decker (Sam) -- finds this whole thing deeply amusing and tremendously romantic rather than terrifyingly obsessive and a frightening single-minded disregard for the rights of others when they get in the way of Alex's desires. Exactly what any woman wants in a boyfriend!

The next day opens with Alex moaning about the wounds left by the taser darts -- rather than, as I had expected, in a jail cell -- because Privilege means never having to face any consequences for your actions. Stone demands that Alex join the Navy with him so that he can stop getting into trouble, and one short flash-forward later, we learn that -- despite the fact that Alex is a loose-cannon with no respect for authority and a blatant disinterest in serving his country -- he has been promoted to Lieutenant and placed in charge of weapons systems. Indeed, if you listen to Liam Neesom (Admiral Shane) in this trailer, you can learn that Alex wasn't just promoted, but was promoted from "enlisted to officer faster than anyone in the history of the United States Navy". White Male Privilege will do that for you!

Alex then proceeds to get kicked in the head during a soccer match and loses the game for his team by insisting that he be the one to attempt the penalty shot despite his obvious concussion -- and he gets his way by simultaneously applying emotional pressure to his brother (the team captain) and by literally threatening to kill the teammate selected to perform the penalty kick in his stead. After losing the soccer match, Alex lounges on the beach for awhile with his girlfriend -- a major sub-plot in this movie is when and how he will ask her father, Admiral Shane, for his "permission" to marry Sam -- before then sneaking in late to a major opening ceremony and refusing to take off his sunglasses out of respect for the veterans being honored at that ceremony. Because he's cool like that.

And when Sam steers Alex towards her father after the ceremony so that he can ask permission, Alex instead ends up in the bathroom, illegally brawling with the soccer player who kicked him in the head earlier in the movie. This scene climaxes in Admiral Shane chewing Alex out for being so damn awesome, including being able to interrupt Admiral Shane quoting Homer, so that he can finish the quote himself. Which means that Alex doesn't just memorize Homer in his free time, he memorizes all English translations of Homer. Because White Male Privilege.

Briefly we cut away from Alex so that his blonde white woman girlfriend Sam can literally lecture a black disabled man about his "anger". I am not making this up.

And here is my point: Literally this entire movie is about White Male Privilege pain. The movie goes out of its way to establish that Alex is awesome, not because he's a good person or because he makes good choices, but because he's inherently good by virtue of being white and male and educated. The story arc is about Alex losing his brother (manpain!) and learning to grow up and accept responsibility. There is literally a scene where a person of color -- John Tui (Chief Petty Officer Walter "The Beast" Lynch) -- pleads with Alex to step into command after Stone's death, telling Alex: "If you can't...who can?" The movie denouement involves Alex accepting an award for being awesome, being reassured that he has an amazing future in the Navy, and agreeing to have lunch with Admiral Shane so that he can give his permission for Alex to marry Sam.

All the stuff with aliens and battleships are nothing more than a stepping stone between a Privileged White Boy becoming a Privileged White Man.

It would be easy to write this off as Battleship just being a shit movie, but that would be missing the larger picture. The self-discovery of a privileged white man as he grapples with adversity has become -- and perhaps always has been -- a standard default form for movies, particularly action movies. Want to tell a story about aliens fighting naval battles? Let's craft the narrative about a white man learning responsibility! Want to tell a story about humans invading another planet for its environmental resources? Let's craft the narrative around a white man learning the importance of nature! Want to tell a story about the bombing of Pearl Harbor and the loss of life that day? Let's craft the narrative around two white men learning to love the same woman! Want to tell a story about a magical land full of strong female characters as written by a feminist man? Let's craft the narrative around a white man learning the importance of leadership! Want to tell a story about American history and slavery and the civil war? Let's craft the narrative around a white man standing up for what's right!

And, you know, that's just shit off the top of my head. I'm sure I could name about eleventy billion more if I really tried. And -- more often than not -- the few times a movie isn't about a white male privileged guy learning self-discovery while navigating the end of the world, it ends up being a white female privileged gal.

The thing of it is, I don't think this is the worst formula in the world, okay? I get wanting to insert human interest in an action movie. Some things -- like, for instance, an ALIEN INVASION -- are going to be hard for some of the audience to really grapple with and so it's often very useful to give them a viewpoint character to sink into. Someone who can humanize the vast tragedy and bring to home precisely how awful and terrible this big, awful, terrible thing is. And I think that this formula doesn't necessarily preclude larger human interest and social themes and important messages. This is not a post saying that you can't make or enjoy movies with privileged white male protagonists anymore.

This is a post saying that I would like the viewpoint character for these movies to not nearly-always be a privileged white male protagonist. I am tired of this being the default form that producers and writers and directors apparently never seem to question that audiences will just love. Why, instead of a monumental fuck-up privileged jerkass who pisses away goodwill and opportunity like there's no tomorrow, could not this movie have starred a black woman who had managed to make Lieutenant despite the barriers of racism, sexism, and Good Old Boys' club assholishness? Why, instead of a self-discovery of maybe I shouldn't be a violent self-absorbed asshole anymore culminating in a medal of awesome, could not this movie have been about a black woman Lieutenant being catapulted into a command she might otherwise have never been given a chance at and being incredibly awesome at it, culminating in a medal of kickass and the message that diversity is important if we want to be good at repelling alien invasions?

Because -- and this might just be me -- I would so much rather have watched that movie than the one we ended up with.

53 comments:

Fourscythe said...

There is literally a scene where a person of color -- John Tui (Chief Petty Officer Walter "The Beast" Lynch) -- pleads with Alex to step into command after Stone's death, telling Alex: "If you can't...who can?

From my experience with the Navy, the Chief's Mess pretty much run everything. They let the officers think they are in charge during they good times, and drop the pretense during the bad times. The thought of a Chief getting jerked around by a inexperienced Lieutenant is laughable.

I might have to post something in Open thread about the differences in enlisted/officer diversity and Hollywood's internalization of the racist implications.

Also, Naval Officer promotion is based on time in rank. Outside of extreme circumstances, there is no way to get promoted faster.

I can't watch movies like this, my suspension of disbelief just doesn't extend to this crap.

Finally, this new disqus setup is absolutely awful. Guess I need to signup for twitter.

Holden said...

I don't remember that speech. The one I remember is Pike telling Kirk that he's not the hotshit rogue he thinks he is, that his father would be ashamed of him and that he's wasting his potential ("the only genius-level repeat offender in the Midwest" are the words he used). He tells Kirk that he should do something to give his life meaning and purpose and suggests enlisting in Starfleet as a means to this end.

Maybe I'm remembering it wrong, though.

Silver Adept said...

Argh. I wondered what they would do with a movie based on a board game, and apparently, the answer is "white male macho story!" Which is something we've seen more than enough of. (Will Smith is far more awesome in alien movies, whether as an MiB or a fighter pilot (although Independence Day does eventually end up with a white guy striking the killing blow).

Silver Adept said...

Argh. I wondered what they would do with a movie based on a board game, and apparently, the answer is "white male macho story!" Which is something we've seen more than enough of. (Will Smith is far more awesome in alien movies, whether as an MiB or a fighter pilot (although Independence Day does eventually end up with a white guy striking the killing blow).

Ann Unemori said...

Good thoughts, yet I fear anything short of a complete overhaul could have really saved this film.

GeniusLemur said...

Oh good, Chosen One stuff. Because that's the kind of bold, innovative concept that's in desperately short supply nowadays. Like breaking out of the same-old same-old character rut with a protagonist who's a white male slacker.

boutet said...

Yes! A lot of it (being a jerk to take over as captain) is powered by alternate-Spock giving him some bullshit pep talk about him being the greatest and best with a heavy dose of destiny. Completely missing the fact that a person is shaped by their experiences, and maybe a young asshole version of a person isn't actually the same as the older version who has dealt with responsibilities and experiences in getting to that stage. It felt very much like ideas of kingship and heredity. It doesn't matter if he hasn't had the life experience of the other version of himself; he has the same blood/brain/whatever body parts so he's exactly the same at heart, really!
That on top of the whole son-of-his-father things and it came off more as if "captain" and "ship" were just standing in for "throne" and "kingdom." He had the right genes for the job, and anyone else is just a fake and a failure waiting to happen.

boutet said...

Yes! A lot of it (being a jerk to take over as captain) is powered by alternate-Spock giving him some bullshit pep talk about him being the greatest and best with a heavy dose of destiny. Completely missing the fact that a person is shaped by their experiences, and maybe a young asshole version of a person isn't actually the same as the older version who has dealt with responsibilities and experiences in getting to that stage. It felt very much like ideas of kingship and heredity. It doesn't matter if he hasn't had the life experience of the other version of himself; he has the same blood/brain/whatever body parts so he's exactly the same at heart, really!
That on top of the whole son-of-his-father things and it came off more as if "captain" and "ship" were just standing in for "throne" and "kingdom." He had the right genes for the job, and anyone else is just a fake and a failure waiting to happen.

hidden_urchin said...

Yup. There is a Star Trek that deals reasonably with the idea that sheer talent isn't as important as experience; it's the DS9 episode "Valiant." I like that episode a lot better and wish the reboot had taken more ideas from it.

hidden_urchin said...

Yup. There is a Star Trek that deals reasonably with the idea that sheer talent isn't as important as experience; it's the DS9 episode "Valiant." I like that episode a lot better and wish the reboot had taken more ideas from it.

Ana Mardoll said...

*blinks*

Welp, now I feel good about refusing to watch the movie! (What the hell?!)

Ana Mardoll said...

*blinks*

Welp, now I feel good about refusing to watch the movie! (What the hell?!)

hidden_urchin said...

It's more of the general plot and events. Let's go with a summary. I'll ROT13 in case someone is worried about spoilers and I've kept it pretty vague so I don't think there are any triggers other than what apply to the original post.

Xvq-Xvex fgrnyf naq gbgnyf n pynffvp pne. Trgf njnl jvgu vg.

Lbhat nqhyg Xvex uvgf ba Huhen va n gbgnyyl frkhny unenffzrag-perrcl jnl. Fgnegf one svtug bire vg. Trgf nff xvpxrq. Vafgrnq bs orvat neerfgrq vf gbyq ol Fgnesyrrg pbzznaqre gb rayvfg va gur syrrg orpnhfr ur'f fb fhcre fzneg naq obyq. Cerggl zhpu gur fgbel fhttrfgf ur trgf guvf punapr orpnhfr bs jub uvf sngure jnf.

Pbzcyrgrf Fgnesyrrg Npnqrzl pbhefrjbex va guerr lrnef rira gubhtu vg hfhnyyl gnxrf sbhe.

Purngf ba Xbolnfuv Zneh naq gnyxf onpx gb bssvpre jub qrfvtarq vg. Npghnyyl trgf chg ba cebongvba. (Lnl, zbivr!)

Fgbjf njnl baobneq Ragrecevfr jvgu gur uryc bs ZpPbl, pvephziragvat orvat tebhaqrq.

Pbzrf gb fhcre-oevyyvnag ernyvmngvba gung frnfbarq bssvpref qb abg. Vf trarenyyl vafhobeqvangr va cerfragvat guvf ernyvmngvba. Trgf cebzbgrq gb svefg bssvpre juvyr Fcbpx vf cebzbgrq gb Pncgnva sbe gur fhcre-qnatrebhf zvffvba.

Nsgre pncgnva vf gnxra ubfgntr, punyyratrf Fcbpx sbe pbzznaq naq vf ntnva vafhobeqvangr. Guebja bss bs fuvc. (Hasbeghangryl, abg Ynhen Ebfyva fglyr.)

Znxrf jnl onpx gb fuvc naq cebibxrf Fcbpx vagb oernxvat qbja ol orvat n ubeevoyr, ubeevoyr crefba. Raqf hc va pbzznaq.

Rirelbar trgf gbtrgure naq fnirf gur jbeyq. Xvex raqf zbivr pbasvezrq pncgnva bs gur Ragrecevfr. Jura ur fgnegrq nf n pnqrg. Lrnu.

hidden_urchin said...

It's more of the general plot and events. Let's go with a summary. I'll ROT13 in case someone is worried about spoilers and I've kept it pretty vague so I don't think there are any triggers other than what apply to the original post.

Xvq-Xvex fgrnyf naq gbgnyf n pynffvp pne. Trgf njnl jvgu vg.

Lbhat nqhyg Xvex uvgf ba Huhen va n gbgnyyl frkhny unenffzrag-perrcl jnl. Fgnegf one svtug bire vg. Trgf nff xvpxrq. Vafgrnq bs orvat neerfgrq vf gbyq ol Fgnesyrrg pbzznaqre gb rayvfg va gur syrrg orpnhfr ur'f fb fhcre fzneg naq obyq. Cerggl zhpu gur fgbel fhttrfgf ur trgf guvf punapr orpnhfr bs jub uvf sngure jnf.

Pbzcyrgrf Fgnesyrrg Npnqrzl pbhefrjbex va guerr lrnef rira gubhtu vg hfhnyyl gnxrf sbhe.

Purngf ba Xbolnfuv Zneh naq gnyxf onpx gb bssvpre jub qrfvtarq vg. Npghnyyl trgf chg ba cebongvba. (Lnl, zbivr!)

Fgbjf njnl baobneq Ragrecevfr jvgu gur uryc bs ZpPbl, pvephziragvat orvat tebhaqrq.

Pbzrf gb fhcre-oevyyvnag ernyvmngvba gung frnfbarq bssvpref qb abg. Vf trarenyyl vafhobeqvangr va cerfragvat guvf ernyvmngvba. Trgf cebzbgrq gb svefg bssvpre juvyr Fcbpx vf cebzbgrq gb Pncgnva sbe gur fhcre-qnatrebhf zvffvba.

Nsgre pncgnva vf gnxra ubfgntr, punyyratrf Fcbpx sbe pbzznaq naq vf ntnva vafhobeqvangr. Guebja bss bs fuvc. (Hasbeghangryl, abg Ynhen Ebfyva fglyr.)

Znxrf jnl onpx gb fuvc naq cebibxrf Fcbpx vagb oernxvat qbja ol orvat n ubeevoyr, ubeevoyr crefba. Raqf hc va pbzznaq.

Rirelbar trgf gbtrgure naq fnirf gur jbeyq. Xvex raqf zbivr pbasvezrq pncgnva bs gur Ragrecevfr. Jura ur fgnegrq nf n pnqrg. Lrnu.

hidden_urchin said...

I am so glad I was not the only one who thought "Star Trek reboot" when reading that summary.

hidden_urchin said...

I am so glad I was not the only one who thought "Star Trek reboot" when reading that summary.

GeniusLemur said...

Yeah, because charging in guns blazing is always a great idea.

GeniusLemur said...

Yeah, because charging in guns blazing is always a great idea.

depizan said...

This is basically someone rewriting the reboot to fix the times White Male Privilege Dood got smacked down. I mean, like, literally. He literally starts out as a loser in a bar ogling a woman. Only she turns him down and thinks he's an idiot and he gets his ass kicked by other male idiots. Which is problematic but not nearly as offensive as WTF burrito. Because WTF!?

Edit: also, he is not rewarded with getting the girl. So, it has issues. This has VOLUMES.

depizan said...

This is basically someone rewriting the reboot to fix the times White Male Privilege Dood got smacked down. I mean, like, literally. He literally starts out as a loser in a bar ogling a woman. Only she turns him down and thinks he's an idiot and he gets his ass kicked by other male idiots. Which is problematic but not nearly as offensive as WTF burrito. Because WTF!?

Edit: also, he is not rewarded with getting the girl. So, it has issues. This has VOLUMES.

Joe_Z said...

Well, there was one scene where the friend of Kirk's father basically said that Starfleet thought too much and kicked too little ass, so it needed the kind of guy who threw punches first and asked questions later. I very much didn't like that speech.

Joe_Z said...

Well, there was one scene where the friend of Kirk's father basically said that Starfleet thought too much and kicked too little ass, so it needed the kind of guy who threw punches first and asked questions later. I very much didn't like that speech.

Ana Mardoll said...

I don't see how that could go wrong!

Ana Mardoll said...

I don't see how that could go wrong!

depizan said...

Holy fuck. Yes, by all means, lets take everything wrong with the Star Trek reboot and turn it up to 11! Possibly 12! Because what in holy hell with the burrito and WHAT?? There is so much Just No just in your brief description that its a wonder I can speak anything but profanity and WHAT!? *boggles*

Can I borrow a time machine and go back and give the movie makers your suggestion instead? I'd watch the hell out of that. This...this... This is pure, unadulterated NO.

depizan said...

Holy fuck. Yes, by all means, lets take everything wrong with the Star Trek reboot and turn it up to 11! Possibly 12! Because what in holy hell with the burrito and WHAT?? There is so much Just No just in your brief description that its a wonder I can speak anything but profanity and WHAT!? *boggles*

Can I borrow a time machine and go back and give the movie makers your suggestion instead? I'd watch the hell out of that. This...this... This is pure, unadulterated NO.

Ana Mardoll said...

I refuse to watch the Star Trek reboot, lol. But would love an explanation/description, if it's a specific scene.

Ana Mardoll said...

I refuse to watch the Star Trek reboot, lol. But would love an explanation/description, if it's a specific scene.

Ana Mardoll said...

True fact: I started rage screaming at the TV when he's running towards the girl while police officers train their tasers on him. Husband was cracking up and all, "What? It's romantic," and I was all, "OH MY FUCKING GOD NO THIS IS CREEPY TERRIFYING STALKER BEHAVIOR."

I only wish you all could have been there.

Ana Mardoll said...

True fact: I started rage screaming at the TV when he's running towards the girl while police officers train their tasers on him. Husband was cracking up and all, "What? It's romantic," and I was all, "OH MY FUCKING GOD NO THIS IS CREEPY TERRIFYING STALKER BEHAVIOR."

I only wish you all could have been there.

Joe_Z said...

This! Star Trek was definitely on my mind when I thought about the wrongness of this movie.

Joe_Z said...

This! Star Trek was definitely on my mind when I thought about the wrongness of this movie.

boutet said...

Sigh. I have such a hard time enjoying movies anymore. I can't ignore the things that I used to.

boutet said...

Sigh. I have such a hard time enjoying movies anymore. I can't ignore the things that I used to.

Joe_Z said...

Ah yes, the brilliant but irresponsible hotshot who is destined to save the day because he's just so awesome (and white, and cis, and het, etc.). I didn't even make it to the burrito theft scene because I could see where the movie was going. I'm glad I missed the rest.

Joe_Z said...

Ah yes, the brilliant but irresponsible hotshot who is destined to save the day because he's just so awesome (and white, and cis, and het, etc.). I didn't even make it to the burrito theft scene because I could see where the movie was going. I'm glad I missed the rest.

GeniusLemur said...

Wow, it's just like the standard Chosen One arc, except with the destiny/prophecy/blessing of Aslan/miscellaneous other BS. Which, amazingly enough, makes the whole situation worse, because now we don't have the excuse of "great destiny" for why no one but this whining manchild/slacker/loser/POS and his girlfriend matter.

Oh, and the military (any military, anywhere, anytime) has a couple terms for loose cannons who are major discipline problems and can't follow orders. One is In the brig another is dishonorably discharged.

GeniusLemur said...

Wow, it's just like the standard Chosen One arc, except with the destiny/prophecy/blessing of Aslan/miscellaneous other BS. Which, amazingly enough, makes the whole situation worse, because now we don't have the excuse of "great destiny" for why no one but this whining manchild/slacker/loser/POS and his girlfriend matter.

Oh, and the military (any military, anywhere, anytime) has a couple terms for loose cannons who are major discipline problems and can't follow orders. One is In the brig another is dishonorably discharged.

Angelia Sparrow said...

I considered seeing it purely for eye candy (I'm shallow that way and Taylor Kitch + Alexander Skaarsgard? = dead of hot)

Now I suspect it will be better if I just run it in a Netflix window while typing and make up my own dialogue.

Angelia Sparrow said...

I considered seeing it purely for eye candy (I'm shallow that way and Taylor Kitch + Alexander Skaarsgard? = dead of hot)

Now I suspect it will be better if I just run it in a Netflix window while typing and make up my own dialogue.

Ana Mardoll said...

I love Alexander Skarsgård. I wouldn't recommend watching it for him.

SPOILERS: Ur trgf nyzbfg ab fperra gvzr, naq ur qvrf nebhaq gur guvegl zvahgr znex. Vg'f fhpu n jnfgr, orpnhfr ur vf jnl zber vagrerfgvat n punenpgre guna uvf oebgure.

Ana Mardoll said...

I love Alexander Skarsgård. I wouldn't recommend watching it for him.

SPOILERS: Ur trgf nyzbfg ab fperra gvzr, naq ur qvrf nebhaq gur guvegl zvahgr znex. Vg'f fhpu n jnfgr, orpnhfr ur vf jnl zber vagrerfgvat n punenpgre guna uvf oebgure.

GeniusLemur said...

I meant without the destiny/...

GeniusLemur said...

I meant without the destiny/...

depizan said...

Something like the bit before the (beat) might have made it into the film, but I really don't think the bit after made it in at all. (been a while since I saw it, but pretty sure I'd remember that)


Kirk's route to captain makes little to no sense, unless he was dipped in protagonist dust, but as I recall he mostly got a lot of "stop wasting your potential." That this was based on his parentage - sorry, that this was based on who his dad was (wtf happened to his mom? Movie? Movie? Anyone?) - is problematic enough.

Lonespark said...

I dont' know what happened to his mom, but there's a lot of good fanfiction about her. (Good as in well written. Not happy.)

Randomosity said...

Oh yes! This times 1000. I see a lot of wasted potential in the form of the cinematic glass ceiling. The real protagonist being the non-white, non-male,non-hetero, non-choose your own privilege character who can't rise above secondary character thanks to the script and the directing.

Can we please have some protags who aren't all cookie-cutter sons of privilege learning to wear their privilege well? Can we please have a variety of characters whose race/sex/sexual orientation/gender identity isn't the main plot?

In Star Trek and Star Wars, it shouldn't be a factor, but your rewrite of Battleship is set in the modern real world, so those factors will exist and do need to be in there. Let's just not make a Message Movie about it.


I've noticed this as a little kid seeing my favorite movies full of no one like me except in non-character player roles (you can replace the character with an inanimate object and no major rewrite will be necessary). Since one of my earliest dreams was to be a movie star, I went to movies looking for the character I'd want to be cast as, and I came out time and time again with "None of the above".

Lonespark said...

(Xvex trgf) guebja bss bs fuvc. (Hasbeghangryl, abg Ynhen Ebfyva fglyr.)

Yeah, this.

Lonespark said...

The Designated Privileged Hero thing made me think of sorta-ensemble shows like Power Rangers where there's a team but the leader is always White Dude, who is pretty much always the most boring character and has some kind of really forced redemption arc.

Then I thought of Dino Squad, which my kids enjoy watching on Netflix, and I was like, "Well, that's not as bad. There are White Guys, but they're not Designated Hero Jocks. And Smart Black Guy and Action Girl are far and away the most interesting/useful characters..." Then I looked it up and realized there is also some sort of White Guy Hero, and despite the fact that I watched several episodes recently, I had forgotten he existed because he is just that boring.

Lonespark said...

chris the cynic had a post at Stealing Commas about the the Star Trek reboot and how it's basically "this entire world is designed to reward one particular White Male Human Asshole."

This movie...what? Why?
It reminds me of one large part of why I utterly despise the Transformers movies.

Who would play your Lt., Ana? My brain is currently not coming up with many younger black actresses who aren't Zoe Saldana, although I could think of a bunch of awesome ladies to play Admirals and such. I kind of wanted it to be Angela McDonald because she is awesome, but not quite so much of a straight-up action-movie person.

Holden said...

I see. I'm 99% sure those lines were cut out of the final film. No idea why, of course.

hf said...

Yes, quite. Although, does any scene tell us he got away more than a month before the movie proper starts?

Joe_Z said...

There was some of that, yes: "Your father was captain for twelve minutes and saved eight hundred lives. Think you can do better?"

But there was also this (Taken directly from the screenplay. The final movie version may be a bit different.):

"That instinct to leap without looking--that was his nature, too. And in my
opinion it's something Starfleet has lost. We're admirable, respectable. But overly-disciplined.
(beat)
Those cadets you took on, they'll make competent officers -- but you can bet your ass they'll run home to momma the minute they're looking down the barrel of
a Klingon phaser cannon."

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