Disney casts 19 year-old Halle Bailey as Ariel in "Little Mermaid."

Discussion in 'Science Fiction & Fantasy' started by Serveaux, Jul 4, 2019.

  1. Supergirl

    Supergirl Not Awesome Possum Moderator

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    I doubt they’ll ever make a retro Bond movie, so that hypothetical doesn’t work. A female Bond could work, Atomic Blonde is basically that and it was great. I don’t expect it to happen anytime soon though.
     
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  2. jaime

    jaime Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I think that’s the thing (have seen three minutes of atomic blonde and not got to watch rest yet...was only a few days ago xD) is that you can have all kinds of spy movie...but a bond movie almost isn’t a spy movie anymore anyway...or wasn’t for a while...it’s kind of it’s own thing. Bond, if it was made today, wouldn’t have the longevity it has had...it was a product of its times, that changed a very little between times. I do think people would enjoy seeing the things happen to Jemima Bond that they watch James Bond go through. Battered, tied to things, tortured, sleeping with the enemy, told not to crash their car, treated as an idiot with technology etc etc.

    It’s slow work, but as I said with the Stella Rimington thing...you need a female character built from the ground up to have anything like a female bond, you can’t just metaphorically stick bosoms on the character, and once you hack away bits of the character, there comes a point where it wouldn’t be that character anymore....as you rightly point out with Merida in Brave. She works because she is part of that story. It doesn’t work as well if you make her a boy, and you have to change the whole set-up if she’s not a wee Scots lassie. Bond I think is the same, with a little more wiggle room because of changes it’s already gone through.

    The thing is these characters have become a sort of...cultural thing I suppose. We see a female bond as a right to be fought for in some respects, which is..odd when you really think about it. Bond is only bond because of its history, and it’s history is shaped by audience, and its audience is defined by who likes that sort of thing. It’s audience was predominantly male...but plenty of women too, but not as much. Most of its audience grew up with it, and no one was telling anyone they could or couldn’t like it, buy the book watch the films etc.
    Like most things now being led by analysing it’s audience, it’s audience grew organically. And plenty of its stablemates fell by the wayside....no one clamours for a new Harry Palmer, and I don’t know if we ever got a Modesty Blaise.
    I think the biggest missed opportunity for female bond in the cinema sense isn’t even in the spy movie genre as such...if people had got behind the Jolie Tomb Raiders, they were very very much the Bond Template. But they didn’t even get behind the vikander reboot.

    I am not sure anyone could make a new ‘bond’ these days...the times It came through shaped it and it’s Popularity depends on that.

    Which comes full circle...it’s about ‘why’ we want these things changed, and then whether that would really work the way we want it to.

    I think Viking red hair, like swishing coral, really works for mermaids personally, and assume they may even keep that aspect, wherever the actress is from. But the Disney purists won’t like it, and we know how big on purity some Disney is xD
     
  3. Kor

    Kor Admiral Admiral

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    Richard Burton played Churchill once.

    Kor
     
  4. Supergirl

    Supergirl Not Awesome Possum Moderator

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    None of that applies to Ariel though. Her being any skin color is unimportant to the story, so hiring a black actress isn’t going to change her. Even hair color doesn’t really matter. Disney went with red because the animators liked how that looked, originally she was supposed to be blonde and they had to fight Eisner to make her a redhead because he insisted that mermaids were supposed to be blonde.
     
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  5. Timelord Victorious

    Timelord Victorious Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Yes. Thank you.
    Not too familiar with Namor. Guess my brain went to that other Disney character with an N under the sea.
     
  6. jaime

    jaime Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Totally. But you were talking about when it is and isn’t ok to change such things.
    Personally I prefer brunettes myself, and from a scandi perspective, that’s probably a bit more exotic as a mermaid should be anyway xD
     
  7. JD

    JD Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Siren introduced mermaids/merman from a whole bunch of different races, so we have gotten non-white mer people before.
     
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  8. gblews

    gblews Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    This is based on a false equivalency. Black people and other oppressed and woefully underrepresented minorities do not hold an equal place in American society as white people. When minorities complain about a black character being changed to white it is because of the severe lack of on screen or on stage representation. This is not the case for white people who have historically been over represented in entertainment media. So, a white person complaining about "under representation" in entertainment media, is at best ludicrous, and at worst, racist.
    I'm curious, why not Ariel?
    (Bolding mine)

    When a white actor is cast in a role, it is automatically assumed by some, that that actor was chosen because he or she was the best for the role. When a racial minority or a woman is cast in a role other than as a racial minority or woman, the cry is that the actor is not necessarily the best actor for the role and that the studio is "pandering". It's the old, 'we don't care about the actor's race, the studio has an agenda' position. :rolleyes:

    The folks who usually make this assertion almost never come out and just say that they don't want minorities and women playing roles formerly played by white men (and sometimes white women). Using this argument provides "cover" for presentation of racist/sexist ideals without "sounding" like a racist.
     
  9. M'rk son of Mogh

    M'rk son of Mogh Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Why does it have to be based on sexism and racism?
    Why can't it be simpler than that: Many nerds (I proudly wear that title, not meant as an insult) generally hate change. Of any kind.
    It's really no deeper than that.

    Look at Lion King. People LOVE that it's James Earl Jones again (no racism there). I know of many people that hate they didn't bring back Jeremy Irons (he was perfectly cast in that role, I'm in that camp). We hate change.

    Wizard magazine back in the day would do their superhero casting calls, back in the dark ages of barely no superhero movies. It was never out of the box thinking, it was always "what actor looks most like the characters we love". That's just how we operate. Black actor for black character, white actor for white character. But don't. Change. Anything.

    We grew up with these characters. And we simply want them to match. There's nothing more sinister behind it than that.

    This obviously isn't everybody, many are more open to change and variation and even hope for it. But the accusations shouldn't always come out for the opposite as a first line of attack. It's unfair to both sides of the debate.
     
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  10. Gov Kodos

    Gov Kodos Admiral Admiral

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    Sort of like Splash where the waters off New England and New York suddenly became the Caribbean.
     
  11. Timelord Victorious

    Timelord Victorious Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Hating change...

    Basically you are saying, that many nerds (also counting myself among them, but not the bigoted kind), prefer the status quo.
    They profess to not be opposed to black or female, gay or trans characters, just that they want things to be the way they remember them.
    Superficially that sounds valid.

    But it’s wishing for a status that is unfavorable to a lot of minorities’ representation.
    They are putting their preferences over the necessary correction of representation in media to change society for the better.
    If it’s not bigoted, it’s at the very least unreasonably and deeply selfish and petty.
    Because the changes they oppose usually don’t negatively impact the value of the story or presentation.
    They ask for the preservation of their nostalgia but (hopefully) don’t realize they also ask for the preservation of discriminatory practices in the industry.

    They ask for the creation of original heroes that can freely be black or female, but rant about agendas and SJWs when that actually happens.
    Then it’s the liberal Hollywood shoving a liberal agenda down their throats.

    It makes no difference if they perceive themselves as bigoted or not.
    What they say sounds the same and the result is the same.

    I expect the nerd audience to be better than that. And if they aren’t, then they have no right to not be called out in it.
     
  12. M'rk son of Mogh

    M'rk son of Mogh Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    ^
    Totally disagre about original heroes. Miles Morales is the best thing to happen to the Spider-verse, is actually the only Spider-Man comic I collect at the moment, had a universally praised (and Oscar winning movie!), people are excited for his eventual arrival in the MCU, and Peter Parker didn't have to be changed for all of this to happen, he's still around for people to enjoy as well.

    Do things well, and it will be accepted.

    Edited to add: To me, this is just a different version of the Superman red trunks debate. Not about anything racist or sexist, just about changing the superficial.
     
    Last edited: Jul 11, 2019
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  13. Guy Gardener

    Guy Gardener Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    It's not Miles if Bendis isn't writing.
     
  14. Supergirl

    Supergirl Not Awesome Possum Moderator

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    I doubt that Miles would’ve gotten the positive reaction that he did if he wasn’t in the Ultimate universe and disconnected from the main universe and Spider-Man. Even then there was a lot of angry nerds upset about it, they’ve all died down but that initial response still happened and always tends to happen.
     
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  15. M'rk son of Mogh

    M'rk son of Mogh Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Disagree (not that we could ever know for sure either way) and irrelevant really. He was created, his book was great, and he now has a movie under his belt. It works for everyone.

    Ms. Marvel is part of the main universe and I'd argue she's just as loved as Miles is. Again, nobody had to be replaced. Creation doesn’t have to come from erasure.
     
  16. Dry Bones 37

    Dry Bones 37 Admiral Admiral

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    Also, H2O and Mako Mermaids.
     
  17. flavaflav

    flavaflav Fleet Captain Premium Member

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    Changing a characters color is not erasing that character... it's changing their color.
     
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  18. M'rk son of Mogh

    M'rk son of Mogh Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    That's very true, my apologies for what I said, I agree with that.

    I went on a slightly different tangeant that really had nothing to do with the point Inwas trying to make and stupidly muddied the already murky waters some more (I was annoyed a few years back when Marvel comics did wholesale replacement of their characters with new ones, instead of how they perfectly brought in Miles while still having Peter's adventures in another book. A different debate that doesn't necessarily belong here that I shouldn't have included in my simple "I just don't like change" part of the argument)
     
  19. JD

    JD Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    So they have non-white mer people in those then. I've only seen part of the first season of H2O, and I thought I had seen something about at least one or two non-white character being brought in later, but I wasn't positive.
     
  20. Dry Bones 37

    Dry Bones 37 Admiral Admiral

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    Mako Mermaids does for sure. It's an Australian production too. I know there is at least two Asian mermaids in the third season.