Disney’s release of Mulan 2020 was preceded by the headline news that the lead actress, Liu Yifei, had “tweeted” support of the Hong Kong police. Why is everyone so upset? Because the Hong Kong police have been aggressively stifling freedom of speech during protests for human rights. Why am I upset? Because the remake is a terrible film that I believe has worse connotations for human rights than Liu’s post on Weibo.
To understand the extent of why Mulan 2020 was a mistake, it’s first important to examine the 1998 film. It’s nearly impossible for a remake to exist without carrying baggage from the original and this film is no exception.
Can we still appreciate content made by a creator whose views and actions have inflicted harm on others? This question is by no means new, but it is still an important one. Numerous creators throughout history have been abusive, racist, or just generally unpleasant people. In the last few years, huge movements like #MeToo have outed many creators as sexual abusers over multiple creative industries. In light of 2020’s BLM protests and JK Rowling’s transphobic essay, I know many people are grappling with their feelings about art they consume. This post is not designed to convince anyone of what they should think, but as a series of thought experiments and a toolkit to help you make up your own mind. Continue reading →
Society is all too quick to label criticism as just another ‘sensitive opinion’. This attitude dismisses real problems and silences people from under-represented groups. I’m discussing diversity in my blog because I want to do my bit in promoting equality and I think analysing diversity in stories is a good place to start.
Lack of diversity is not a new issue. Throughout history, there has always been an ideal human that was represented in media from medieval paintings to silent movies and sketches in newspapers. Kind of like a time-travelling Barbie and Ken. Continue reading →
Where were you in March 2020? When science was shunned, again? When a well-known author’s fear of the unknown gave fuel to the fires of transphobes? When in May a man cried, “I can’t breathe”?
I’m thinking about the future and the human rights questions of the next generation. Will they be angry at us for the part our ignorance played? I don’t know. I don’t know how to write this post either, so bear with me. Continue reading →