Supergirl - Season Four

Discussion in 'Science Fiction & Fantasy' started by Kai "the spy", Jul 17, 2018.

  1. Charles Phipps

    Charles Phipps Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    True, it doesn't have to be that way but I think it should be because it lets RL biogtry off the hook otherwise.
     
  2. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    Like I said, in real life, not everyone is bigoted against everything at once. And sometimes members of groups who are victims of bigotry fail to learn the lesson and have their own separate prejudices, e.g. homophobia among African-Americans or transphobia among feminists. You mentioned intersectionality, so you should know this; it's the whole reason intersectionality has to be taught and considered.

    So if you want to acknowledge real life, you have to acknowledge the complexity, inconsistency, and hypocrisy built into prejudice and bigotry, rather than just treating it as a simple on/off switch.
     
  3. Guy Gardener

    Guy Gardener Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Um...

    So how many Miss Tessmacher can Lex make love to at any one time?
     
  4. Charles Phipps

    Charles Phipps Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Is reinforcing audience belief racism is inconsistent something that actually helps versus acknowledging RL racism along Fantastic?
     
  5. JanewayRulz!

    JanewayRulz! Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Zero.

    Lex only loves himself, Eve would just get in the way.
     
  6. TREK_GOD_1

    TREK_GOD_1 Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Related: Part of the problem with the agenda-driven BS from the showrunners is that they conveniently leave out the vocal, non-white citizens who have serious issues with illegal immigration because in real life, they are not some outlier, but represent innumerable voices, particularly in the back community. The showrunners cannot show that, because they were determined to paint a conclusion that "Anti alien/immigration = Nazi" in its misleading, simpleminded manner.

    In the real world, there are serious--very serious--perceptions/experiences with illegal immigration and the negative impact it had/has on the black community, employment, taking advantage of entitlements black people fought for their specific issues / changed the nation with their blood, etc. That is the side of the immigration issue that should have shaped part of the storyline on Supergirl, but again, the "Anti-alien/immigration = Nazi" agenda was all the showrunners wanted to package and sell, not present true commentary on a real world subject
     
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  7. Charles Phipps

    Charles Phipps Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Let me stop you right there. I mean this not to insult you but as a statement that this is a interpretation that is already a problem because you're identifying with a bunch of fictional domestic terrorists. They should be racist irredeemable scum because they're terrorists. Not because you think they should be a bunch of people who are worried about immigration.

    They're not because in-universe these are guys who go to a house and kill/beat/torture people. That's their function as supervillains.

    The question is how bad a bunch of Nazis do they have to be that you don't think immigration but "murderous band of Neo-Nazis" when you see these guys on screen. What is the litmus point for the Sons of Liberty to be VILLAINS and not caricatures of your politics in your eyes?

    This is a serious question. What do they need to do to be the bad guys? At what point do the anti-alien bigots become pure evil? I ask so you can point out the flaws in the narrative that the human hate group loses all moral sympathy in this.
     
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  8. Jayson1

    Jayson1 Vice Admiral Admiral

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    I agree that racism is more complicated than the show presents but I do wonder also if this is the kind of show that can tell that story. I mean we are talking about a CW show were being pretty and young is still a very important element for most of the shows characters. Combine that with being a comic book show and also something that is part of the Superman sage which is basically family friendly. I feel like like maybe it's at a level of complexity that it can handle without going over the heads of kids who might be watching.

    Jason
     
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  9. Jayson1

    Jayson1 Vice Admiral Admiral

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    I think the point would be that even bad guys have to be well rounded characters. You can't write bad guys like they are bad guys. You got to give them a little depth or else they are just boring cliches. If you can even feel for them at times then it's even better because it's sign of strong writing and acting coming together. Real life is one thing but fiction is another with other sets of rules that don't always connect.

    Jason
     
  10. Charles Phipps

    Charles Phipps Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Ehhh, I perfectly enjoyed the Kryptonian witches for they were. Sometimes villains aren't the stars but just support to the main characters finding more about themselves via a struggle. In this case a bunch of Satanist Kryptonian wicked witches.

    The Sons of Liberty are also just the successors of CADMUS.

    No one was rooting for Lillian Luthor and Hank Henshaw as they planned to deport all of the aliens back to their homeland.

    Yet for some reason people were bending over backwards to say Ben Lockwood and his group are actually about immigrants and shouldn't be considered the same as CADMUS.

    So there's something at work here.
     
  11. Charles Phipps

    Charles Phipps Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    You don't need to be childish or ridiculously complicated in my opinion. I remember the X-men episode about Graydon Creed and the Friends of Humanity from the 90s. You know what? It was pretty damn good and the FOH never once came off as either unbelievable OR sympathetic. Yes, they had their reasons but they were a boorish bunch of scumbags that Wolverine knew exactly how to infiltrate.

    Strangely, I think they made Creed both more understandable (he's Sabertooth's son) and more repulsive (his dark side is BECAUSE he's Sabertooth's son and a vicious bully) than Lockwood despite one 30 minute episode versus an entire season.

    [​IMG]
     
  12. Jayson1

    Jayson1 Vice Admiral Admiral

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    The whole story was about social commentary on immigrants. Well to be exact it was about America in 2019. The President was Trump,Lockwood was The Proud Boys or some of the groups like that, Manchester Black was Antifia and Lex Luthor was Putin and Supergirl and friends were the resistance.

    There is no conspiracy in wanting your bad guys to have depth or even wanting your heroes to have flaws, even major flaws. It's like saying your like the Mob because you enjoyed "The Sopranos" or your kind of feel for serial killers because you liked "Dexter." You can't have depth if the only thing motivating Lockwood is Hate. Hate is just a emotion. You need reasons and it's helpful to see why he feels he is right for doing the things he does. Basically you need to see his humanity and I would say that about any bad guy who wasn't just a scary monster and even then it's nice when the monster is treated like a animal with understandable behavior as opposed to just being used to thrash about killing people for unknown reasons.

    Jason
     
  13. Jayson1

    Jayson1 Vice Admiral Admiral

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    I didn't see that so I can't really comment on it. From what I take though is the bad guys in this episode weren't series regulars. Were they main bad guys for all season? Also we are talking about 30 minute run time and also a show aimed at even younger audience than "Supergirl?" Just like a movie is different from a tv show, a live action show works differently than cartoons.

    Jason
     
  14. Charles Phipps

    Charles Phipps Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    That's not my question, though. I'm asking what you need to have as a viewer to want Supergirl to punch these guys in the face and for them to stay down. I'm not asking what it takes for you to sympathize with them, I'm asking what it takes in their presentation to make them monsters you want to cheer the destruction of.
     
  15. Jayson1

    Jayson1 Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Okay I think I see. The monster stuff I feel would be them doing violence towards innocent aliens. Also the whole look with the masks are pretty good. I loved it when he used that Indian metaphor for as to why not allow aliens because it's a effective way racist can take something that seems to make since on one level but be hidden for something more sinister. The single episode though early in the season was the best episode, maybe of the season because it showed the change. He starts off as a liberal teacher and slowly becomes more racist with each hardship brought onto him.

    One of the worst things about evil is it's the corruption of good. He went from someone who was happily married with a loving child to a man whose wife has died and his son won't have anything to do with him and in prison. It's a good arc though underwritten because the show lost the way during the middle with him. The moment in the season where the SOns of Liberty feel he has gone soft is a good idea they simply didn't really earn though through the writing. They should have set it up better. I think we needed more scenes between him and Luthor and show the difference between both of their goals. Also more scenes both with fellow terrorist as they plot things and you see how little they care about life, and then switch to him having loving moments with his wife and child were they do normal everyday stuff. The racism should feel like it's natural and something they don't really think about. It's just kind of their in the way they speak to each other. Casual racism and stuff like that.


    Jason
     
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  16. TREK_GOD_1

    TREK_GOD_1 Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Let me stop you right there. The discussion of this entire storyline is not limited identifying racist killers for who they are. You are only focusing on Lockwood/CoL, and not people on the streets seen as supporters. THAT is the issue: are all supporters of an anti-alien/immigration program racist? They are if the stereotype of white people with such positions are the default Third Reich reborn. Its not only a gross misrepresentation of the real world issues the showrunners are obviously trying to mirror, but its utterly dishonest, as in not presenting the very real world example I've presented with the black community experience/perception with/of illegal immigration, the showrunners get to paint all anti-alien/immigration positions as the belief of white supremacists killers, which is indeed bullshit.

    That is a matter that cannot be boiled down to Cartoon Boogeymen like the CoL, but the showrunners cannot try to sell their myopic, fact-free case if the real effects and various views of illegal immigration are put on the table. Without other, important voices, all that's left is agenda ( "Anti-alien/immigration = Nazi" ) and the Cartoon Boogeymen, which will never paint an accurate picture of what's really happening on the streets--and if the showrunners are not attempting to do that, then again, its bullshit and agenda--and that's exactly what the Supergirl showrunners dropped on audiences in this storyline.
     
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  17. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    It's the other way around. It's easy for people to believe that racism is something only found in the worst, most irredeemable and one-dimensional monsters, because that lets them believe it's an issue they have no culpability for and no need to confront in their own lives. The fact is, prejudice and xenophobia pervade society on every level, and we all absorb various prejudices from our society without realizing it, and many of us benefit from a power structure based on prejudice and imbalance without thinking about who else that hurts. Me, I'm a white middle-class hetero cismale raised in the suburban American Midwest -- about as privileged a class as you can get, aside from not being rich. As I've grown up, I've discovered a succession of unconscious prejudices in myself that I've had to confront and overcome one by one. But I'm lucky that I was raised in a progressive, open-minded family and went to an integrated school and a cosmopolitan university, and that I therefore got to mingle with people different from myself and broaden my mind and overcome those prejudices. I'm also lucky, in a way, that I was an outcast, bullied nerd, so that I grew up identifying more with outsiders and victims and never assumed I belonged to a privileged group.

    But with a different upbringing, for someone raised in a more insular community or enduring more hardship that makes them want to find scapegoats they can blame, then those latent prejudices that we're all steeped in from childhood can be nourished and amplified rather than defeated with knowledge and friendship. Most hardcore bigots aren't born that way. They have to learn it. They have to be pushed in that direction by their circumstances, by their families or peers, by their pain and fear, by dangerous people who exploit that pain and fear in order to recruit and radicalize them. Lockwood's backstory showed that very well. Making him a real person with depth, a person who had a chance at redemption but lost it through bad circumstances, influences, and choices, was more honest and enlightening than painting him as the easy cartoon stereotype of an irredeemable monster whose beliefs have no connection to anything in ourselves.


    Yes, that too. Fiction is not just polemic. To paraphrase Gene Roddenberry (from his younger days before he got too caught up in his reputation as a visionary), it's fine if you want to put a message in your story, but nobody's going to hear that message if you don't first make your story entertaining. Not to mention that people will be more resistant to a message if it's being shoved down their throats, or if they feel they're being condescended to. Characters in a story need to be more than just obvious puppets reciting the author's moral message. They should feel like believable people whose stories are interesting to watch. And if a story makes us identify with the motives of a monster, that's good. It doesn't absolve the monster; rather, it reminds us of our own fallibility, our own potential for darkness, and our need to resist giving into it.
     
    Last edited: May 24, 2019
  18. TREK_GOD_1

    TREK_GOD_1 Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Very good point. It the reason I view villains such as Darth Maul as one-dimensional--only there to say "boo" and serve one story function, because other than "revenge against the Jedi" (Maul) he ha no purpose, and is a cardboard cutout of "eeevil!" which is not realistic in the story or for the audience.
     
  19. Charles Phipps

    Charles Phipps Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    In fact I'm pleased to say that I hate the depiction of the Children of Liberty being treated as heroes and one of my first changes would be how angry and hated Ben Lockwood would be. At least post Agent Liberty revelation.

    Not necessarily by everyone but there should be protests, calls for his arrest, and people who want him hanged like in real life. You could have him have a Bruce Wayne-esque secret identity who is trying to sell human supremacy to the public but the fact he's made a political leader when he's Timothy McVeigh is such complete bullshit.

    Making Ben Lockwood head of Homeland Security was insane and only slightly less so than Lex Luthor.

    It's what I hated about SECRET EMPIRE as the American people not resisting the Hydra/Neo-Nazis is an offensive ugly depiction of my country.
     
  20. Charles Phipps

    Charles Phipps Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    *snip*

    I had this basic argument on TVtropes.org where it was talked about how dangerous it was that racism was depicted as a thing only "boo hiss" villains should practice because it ignores its affect in systems as well as causal day to day progress. The thing is, where I'm from, it is not actually something that is condemned at all. There are many people who openly state that the Confederacy was an innocent victim, slavery was a benevolent institution with no abuse, and that violence is a logical solution to white genocide.

    Bluntly, we need people to villainize racists when they act like villains because otherwise people will assume it's normal.

    The world would be a very different place if they'd hanged the actual traitors of the South and museums everywhere showed the horrific atrocities that made the South the infamous monsters of their century world-wide.

    (I think its partially a regional thing and people don't realize that taking a stand and saying racists are monsters and that violence against minorities is evil is a courageous one in many places)