Pop Culture Fix: Is Lexa’s Death on “The 100” the Beginning of a Lesbian TV Revolution?

Welcome to your weekly Pop Culture Fix, the place where we tell you about famous gay women and gay women on television, and sometimes there is a cute animal at the end of the post. (Spoiler alert: This time it’s a goat!)


LGBT Fans Deserve Better

In the three weeks since Lexa died on The 100, the conversation about lesbian and bisexual characters on TV has taken a turn I never expected. Bury Your Gays is a trope queer fans and TV critics have been fighting against for decades. We comprise such a tiny tiny tiny fraction of the total number of TV characters in existence, and continue to fight daily against stigmatism and oppression in the real world, so when TV writers casually toss another dead body onto the pile (that already includes 147 other dead lesbian and bisexual characters), it’s almost impossible not to feel victimized by it. Especially because one of the main things that makes us human is our need to project ourselves into stories and onto fictional characters to work out the narratives of our own lives. Queer women have so few quality stories to choose from, and when we find one that resonates, and then find ourselves on the receiving end of a stray bullet again, it starts to take an emotional toll.

The night Lexa died, Rachel and I brainstormed 100 stories in five minutes that don’t involve dead gay ladies to provide some lighthearted comfort and a critique of the laziness of continuing to lean on the cliche. Later that week, TV Intern Karly denounced the trope in her The 100 recap, and so did Stef this week in her The Walking Dead recap, and I even wove my frustration into my The Fosters recap. And Riese began her epic list of every dead lesbian/bisexual TV character in history to help drive home the cruelty and ubiquity of this thing. It’s what we do. It’s what we always do.

But something really different happened this time. Lexa’s death, and the way it was handled by The 100‘s creative team, drove queer fans to their breaking point. They turned social media into a hub of fandom activism, raising $65,000 (so far) for The Trevor Project, hoping to both help gay youth in crisis situations and to shine a light on the fact that gay youth are still struggling in big ways in the United States, to show that they need empowering stories to help carry them into adulthood. The same fans trended “LGBT Fans Deserve Better” worldwide during the following week’s episode of The 100. And, most impressively, and for the first time ever, they forced mainstream pop culture magazines to sit up, pay attention, and address the problem.

Variety asked “What Can TV Learn from The 100 Mess?Entertainment Weekly springboarded from Denise’s death on The Walking Dead the following week to hop into the conversation with an article called “TV Kills Another Lesbian Character: What’s Going On?” Vanity Fair weighed in similarly:”The Walking Dead’s Latest Gruesome Death Is Part of a Troubling TV Trend.” Mega fansite Hypable contributed a voice. So did smaller pop culture sites like Blastr. And The Hollywood Reporter even brought in Dorothy Snarker to explain Why The 100, Walking Dead Deaths Are Problematic.

What The 100‘s queer fandom has accomplished in these last three weeks is pretty miraculous. By relentlessly compelling mainstream media to acknowledge the existence and danger of Bury Your Gays and to admonish TV writers to do better, fandom has added a level of legitimacy to this issue that we’ve never had before, which has ensured that no person working in TV can hide behind feigned ignorance about this trope anymore. I’m not delusional enough to think mainstream pop culture sites are going to become powerhouse allies for queer female representation, but in this moment their help has been revolutionary. It feels like we’re not just talking to ourselves anymore; the conversation has finally been amplified. In 2013, a series creator called me “infantile” for pushing back against his decision to kill a beloved lesbian character. The days of white male showrunners being able to talk to queer female fans and critics like that are over.


Teevee

+ Dustin Lance Black is producing an “LGBT-themed limited series” for ABC called When We Rise. Mary-Louise Parker will play Roma Guy and Rachel Griffiths will play her activist wife, Diane. According to The Hollywood Reporter:

When We Rise chronicles the personal and political struggles, setbacks and triumphs of a diverse family of LGBT men and women who helped pioneer one of the last legs of the U.S. civil rights movement, from its turbulent infancy in the 20th century to the once-unfathomable successes of today.

(Yes, it looks suuuuper white.)

+ Everyone is raving about Cameron Esposito’s debut comedy special, Marriage Material. It sounds like her gayest show yet!

Time and distance have afforded Esposito the ability to laugh at her own youthful ignorance, and she continues to get mileage out of it in Marriage Material. She spends a full quarter of the special delving into the special adolescent agony of having a best friend even she didn’t know she was in love with: “I knew I wanted [my boyfriend] to go home and I knew I wanted the same haircut as Willow from Buffy the Vampire Slayer,“ and that was it. There’s a horrifically awkward interlude in a swim team locker room, in which Esposito wrings maximum physical comedy from stuffing a mid-pubescent body into a very tiny swimsuit. And everything culminates in the particular tragedy of your friend group “experimenting” with everyone else but you.


Movies

+ Roxane Gay’s An Untamed State is going to be a movie, starring Gugu Mbatha-Raw and directed by Gina Prince-Bythewood.

+ Jodie Foster, who is wearing Harry Potter glasses in this photo THR chose for her, will enchant audiences at the Tribeca Film Festival as she sits down with Julie Taymor to talk about her trajectory from child star to esteemed director. Probably I will go to this panel and report back to you.


Queer People Out and About

+ Your girlfriend Evan Rachel Wood makes a guest appearance in Nylon this week, in which she interviews genderfluid artist Illma Gore, who is responsible for that “Make America Great Again” naked Trump art that’s been making it’s way around the internet. The interview is hardcore. It talks about the Western relationship between the depection of genitals and power, the censorship of art, Facebook’s general bullshit, and of course there’s some existential nihilism floating around in there too.

First of all, I love the video you made to get the word out about your situation. You are so charming and adorable, scraping your feet on the ground, chipping paint off a wall, but at the same time dropping these truth bombs to show a really unique perspective on the subject.
I knew everyone was going to take the wrong idea from it and that was kind of the point. Now, I’m getting sued and they’re all going to know what the point is. So I’m just going to stand here and pick a wall and tell the truth.

+ Marie Claire would like to talk to you about your other girlfriend, Ellen Page; specifically about her new Vice series, Gaycation. It’s an exciting profile that digs deep into the cultural ramifications of the series, and sheds new light on how it came to be. It’s also awesomely, surprisingly intersectional.

Gaycation enters pop culture at a delicate moment for queer rights, both domestically and internationally. Not even a year out from the Supreme Court’s marriage ruling, the United States is still trying, and failing, to secure national employee protections for LGBTQ individuals. The result is troubling: You might be able to get married, but you could be legally fired for it. All the while, the United States is seeing some of the most explicitly transphobic legislation in our nation’s history, with 11 states proposing bathroom restrictions for transgender people based on biological sex.

This urgency is reflected in the series. Gaycation delves beyond the one-dimensional, often sanitized understanding of LGBTQ equality through same-sex marriage to expose the complex layers of enduring homophobia: queer youth homelessness, lack of financial resources, sex work, abuse and rejection in the home. These are the queer issues that define the current climate—and they aren’t going to be absolved by gay marriage alone.

+ Paribas Open CEO Raymond Moore said some stupid sexist malarky about women’s tennis last week, including that the women’s tour “rides on the coattails” of the men’s tour. Billie Jean King had some feelings about it, obviously. Moore has now resigned.


Also.Also.Also.

http://ghirahimapologist.tumblr.com/post/140902268028/there-was-a-goat-at-work


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Heather Hogan is an Autostraddle senior editor who lives in New York City with her partner, Stacy, and their cackle of rescued pets. You can also find her on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Tumblr.

Heather has written 465 articles for us.

90 Comments

  1. Thumb up 4

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    When We Rise is probably going to not be nearly as good as we’d all like it to be, but another thing to note is that Emily Skeggs, who played Medium Alison in Fun Home, will be playing the (yet again) younger version of a character, this time taking on Mary-Louise Parker/Roma Guy

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    It really does feel different this time! And you know what? It’s done wonders for my mental health to see this response. When these things have happened in the past I felt alone and cut off with no one listening to our hurt and distress. I just carried anger with me for years and had nothing constructive to do with it. I assumed it would be the same this time but with everything that’s happened I’m actually pretty calm and even half way hopeful. It’s amazing how good being listened to feels.

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      I agree. The worst thing in these situations is people telling you “it’s just a TV show, get over it”. And for a second I always feel guilty because in fact there are worse things in life, but even if it is “just” fiction, our feelings are real.

      And for somebody, especially outsiders to the community, to be validating your feelings this way is a really big deal.

  3. Thumb up 17

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    “It feels like we’re not just talking to ourselves anymore; the conversation has finally been amplified.”

    That sentence puts into words the exhilarated-yet-terrified feeling I’ve been experiencing these past few weeks. Although it’s cringe-worthy to see the mansplaining and indignation and straight-up hate in some of the responses to the mainstream media pieces, those pieces are still getting the attention of an audience that typically pays us no mind. These are people who had never encountered the phrase “Bury Your Gays” before, who never noticed queer characters’ insanely high mortality rate. And although it may seem like those readers haven’t been receptive (just one example of way too many: Dorothy Snarker has been systematically and often hilariously shutting down ridiculous tweet after ridiculous tweet related to her THR article), I think in many cases, those individuals are simply the ones yelling the loudest. Who knows how many people – reasonable, open-minded, compassionate, yet (previously) woefully unaware people – have begun to change their way of thinking as a result of the recent mainstream media coverage? Who knows how many have reacted with “Damn, I didn’t realize this was happening – this is a real problem” as opposed to bluster and bravado and defensiveness and hostility?

    I’m desperately sad that the Bury Your Gays trope has existed and been reinforced for so long (and keeps getting reinforced and reinforced and reinforced…), but I’m tentatively excited about this amplified conversation and the change it could bring.

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    I don’t watch The 100, but a couple weeks ago I became aware of the character’s existence. I thought it was super-cool. I told my wife, “OMG did you know there’s a sci-fi show that has a queer woman and she’s got my name?”

    Two weeks later she’s dead. FML. Not likely there will be another queer woman with my name in sci-fi or fantasy ever again. It seemed so petty, but it happened during a lot of other emotional issues. My first thought was, “Figures. Probably be me too”, but at least this time it may have sparked a change in things.

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    I don’t really know how to feel about “An Untamed State” being made into a movie. SPOILERS FOR THE BOOK: The book was incredible, but I don’t know if I’d want to relive all those rape scenes I’ve already read about on the big screen. I know it’s an important topic, especially after the main character escapes and has to deal with what happened to her (and how her husband has to get a fucking grip and realize his wife went through some serious shit and he needs to buck up and help her through it if that’s even possible). I just. I don’t know. I know it’s a story that needs to be told, and that Roxane Gay is a survivor of rape and we need to hear from survivors, I’m just not comfortable with the rape scenes. I guess it depends on how the movie is directed.

    IDK AUTOSTRADDLERS WHAT DO YOU THINK? A lot of ya’ll are better at expressing feelings through words than I am.

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      I had the same thought–I love Roxane Gay, and the book is amazing, and I would watch Gugu Mbatha-Raw in practically anything*, but I am not sure I could sit through that.

      I think the book is brilliant and important and is a gang rape survivor’s smart exploration of how the ramifications of gang rape are different from other types of rape. I’m just not sure I could watch it. Reading the book was hard enough–although I was very glad I did.

      (*I did draw the line at Jupiter Ascending)

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      Yes, and I really loved that book!

      It felt a little less polished that Chinelo Okparanta’s first book (Happiness, Like Water, which is a short story collection, mostly telling feminist and/or queer stories, many of which are about women of Nigerian descent living in Nigeria and Boston) but I loved seeing what queer life looked like in 1970s Nigeria–the church bar was a fascinating counterpoint to the pre-Stonewall bar culture in the US.

      I also thought Okparanta managed to pull off a very smart revision of a standard lesbian fiction trope, where of the two girls who fall in love young, one is “brave” and comes out and the other is “cowardly” and hooks up with a guy. It’s an annoying and very biphobic cliche, and I thought her book very smartly subverted expectations.

      And the way she interwove and created connections between queer history and that of the Biafran war was brilliant.

      I’m a little frustrated that this book hasn’t gotten more attention in the queer women’s circles I know.

  6. Thumb up 9

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    I’m amazed that the LGBT Fans Deserve Better movement has gone this far. It’s inspiring and I hope that content creators are taking note. We know some of them already are.

    Unfortunately, we’re up against lazy, ignorant writers and a wall of straight people who see nothing wrong with the way things are and infest every mainstream comment section. We’re vastly outnumbered here. Maybe a few well-intentioned people in the industry are genuinely willing to do better, but I have no doubt that many more are listening to the people who tell them that nothing should change because it’s so much easier to listen to the people who validate you.

    It’s obviously not over though. I hope TV critics keep bringing up the Bury Your Gays trope every time an LGBT character is killed off. Maybe if we beat showrunners over the head with the message enough times they’ll get it?

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      This is why we also need to be encouraging and supporting more LGBTQ writers and filmmakers. Because what it’s really going to take is getting US into those writer’s rooms and US behind the cameras, whether it’s making our own content with webseries or getting onto network writing staffs.

      That has to be other arm of this movement for it to have a longlasting impact, IMO.

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    I’ve read 3 of the scripts for When We Rise, and it’s not as white as you think it is. Mary Louise Parker and Guy Pearce are HUGE names, obviously they’re gonna get the most attention. But the cast rounds out, and as I t’s based on real people, it won’t pull a Stonewall and fabricate as well as dismiss the people involved in this fight–so truly its really not as white as you think.

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    So lovely to read this. We have definitely broken through some barriers with how loud we’ve been and how busy we’ve been these last three weeks. This awareness to the trope and general treatment of queer characters in our media is everything!

    The 100 was such a volatile circumstance because they basically invited us into the show, creating this sort of safe space for their LGBTQ+ audience, leaked content to instill our confidence in them, and then did us dirty for the sake of shocking us, thinking we would appreciate it for the sake of their plot, not anticipating the turbulent emotions and cultural implications they would be triggering.

    I remember just after the episode aired, being numb and feeling lost on how to move forward from what had happened like all the rest of the Clexa fandom, then reading about all the other buried gay characters and seeing all these older queer women talking about how they knew what we were going through because this same exact thing happened to them in their viewing history (i.e., 14 years ago with the Tara and Willow situation).

    I think that us being so young, thinking we were past all that kind of stuff, thought this world was more progressive, only to be faced with the reality that a lot hasn’t actually changed with the world’s view (through the media’s portrayal) of us sparked a primal kind of outrage. I felt innately connected to my queer identity for the first time in my life through interacting with other queer viewers and feeling a lot of what they were feeling and knowing there was this unique and painful shared experience between us all.

    There is so much collective trauma and that is what I think is really fueling us to have carried this movement forward so quickly and so forcefully because our outrage and disbelief makes us want change so desperately.

    This is undoubtedly a revolution.

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    I want you to know I almost started crying reading this despite being on a crowded bus. Thank you for this. The way you optimistically (yet realistically) covered this silver lining is comforting. I didn’t even watch the 100. Hadn’t seen a single episode (only a few clexa clips on YouTube) and yet I still found myself emotionally impacted by it and caught up in the aftermath. It did make me appreciate our community though. Seeing other f/f fandom a sympathizing really sent home that message, you hurt one of us you hurt all of us.

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      I don’t know, after reading the comments of the Japanese speaking people who actually understood what was going on I’m not sure the article isn’t just as faulty as Gaycation

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        Hm, but the author of the article is at least aware of the pitfalls of cultural imperialism, of which Gaycation seems blissfully unaware. Isn’t it better to address and acknowledge the potential problem than to be blind to it? To me this is similar to being a cis person who is aware of the pitfalls of transphobia as opposed to one who talks over trans people and imposes her perspective instead of listening. You could still mess up even with the best intentions, but at least you’re aware of the problem and willing to learn from those different from you – just like when you travel with an open mind as opposed to with predetermined expectations and stereotypes.

        It also kind of feels like you’re skirting the issue by hiding behind the critics.

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          She is doing the exact same thing Gaycation is, pushing her views and her experiences into a cultural context she knows nothing about.

          being aware of something and not doing it, are two very different things. she was listening to the people on the show but her views of them, without experiencing the culture and realities of being queer in that part of the world were expressed with just as much bias and faultiness as the ones on the show.

          if she would just talk about lack of awareness of the show that is one thing, but she is actually making the same mistake they did, in my opinion

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          just to add I wasn’t hiding behind the critics I was referencing comments of people who actually live there and their opinion of both gaycation and the article.

          because one can listen without feeling the need to impose their beliefs and cultural bias on other people (which was done to these people by both gaycation and that article)

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            Okay, I hear that. I’ve read some of the comments by the people who live there and it looks like they disagree among themselves on how accurate her appraisal of the material was (just like people from any other cultural context would, I suppose). It also seems like the most vocal critic had more of a problem with the author’s acceptance of the Rotten Women’s enjoyment in the fantasy of two gay men having sex than she did with any other aspect of the article.

            In any case, I feel like hers was an important point to make, one I haven’t come across in other reviews of Gaycation and one which has furthered my comprehension of cultural bias, alerting me to the aforementioned pitfalls, for which I am grateful.

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            “It also seems like the most vocal critic had more of a problem with the author’s acceptance of the Rotten Women’s enjoyment in the fantasy of two gay men having sex than she did with any other aspect of the article.” Don´t you mean in a man raping another man because that is what they are saying the scene is about.

            And a lot of them also had issues with “danger in misrepresenting and exotifying other cultures by claiming their construction of gender & sexuality is somehow alien to ours, and homo/transphobia is entirely a western construction.”, as someone said.

            I’m glad you could find a positive outcome.

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            Actually some have pointed out this was not rape, but rather non-consensual consent, a kink tackled recently on Autostraddle as well.

            I’m sure there exists the danger of exotifying other cultures parallel to the one of projecting one’s values and concepts onto them, but it seems to me the author of the article was merely pointing out the pieces of the puzzle that don’t fit the neat Western classification and were therefore left out, rather than portraying this culture’s ideas about gender and sexuality as alien.

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        Why homophobic? I saw it as being critical of identity politics, not queerness itself. It actually advocates for the recognition of fluidity in sexual practices.
        It was refreshing to see it honor other cultures in their uniqueness; is cultural absolutism to be preferred? Does it not pave the way for cultural imperialism?

  10. Thumb up 6

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    I know that I can trust AS, and maybe a few more places, to keep doing the good work and fighting the good fight. But I’m a bit worry about the rest:

    – most of shows we’re watching now are already wrapped up, the seasons are done and what we’re gonna get was done before LGBT Fans Deserve Better or We Deserve Better movements. Will showrunners, writers, etc., remember this next year?

    – mainstream media has very short memory and the best example of this is the outrage about rape being use as a plot device; Game of Thrones and Tyrant comes to mind as recent examples and what you get? A few articles reflecting outrage and lazy writers that just keep doing the same thing over and over again.

    My biggest hope is that our community, all over the world, can keep with the fight, that this movement is not over. We need to make out voices, our outrage heard, we need this now, tomorrow and always.

    PD: Sorry if this sounds depressive, but I’m a very cynical person. “The road to hell is paved with good intentions” is my motto and I honestly know that it doesn’t apply to our community, but unfortunately I can’t be sure about the rest of the people.

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      As horrible as it sounds, it might actually be a good thing that the upcoming episodes are already wrapped up. If another character gets killed, it will only highlight the issue at hand.

      I think the death of Denise of TWD was a blessing in disguise as it came at a point in time where the outrage was already immense and therefore substantiated the movement. TWD has a significantly higher number in viewership than The 100, thus it drew attention from outlets that would otherwise have ignored the issue. I have not seen one article about the TWD episode where they didn’t mention Lexa’s death.

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    On gaycation,
    So, European Americans critique European Americans on how they see the rest of the world.
    Yes, Ellen sees these cultures through American eyes. And tells their stories as an American.
    The article’s author is doing the same thing.
    Divisions of ‘heterosexuality’, ‘homosexuality’ and consequently homophobia are inventions of Europeans/Americans.
    Around the world same sex interactions weren’t/aren’t characterized or treated the same way they are in the Europe/America. It’s hard to understand and translate.
    “If you think that you live in a part of the world where there aren’t gay people, you’re wrong.”
    More so, if you think you live in a part of the world where there aren’t same sex interactions, you’re wrong.
    There’s a difference between the two statements where the latter is better suited to view other cultures.
    I know Americans in the LGBT community have a hard time grasping this difference and significance as we see the rise of ‘sexually fluid’ and non-labeling.

    Also know that European/American notions of gender are sometimes vastly different than they are in other cultures even though you think they look the same.

    People in other countries will have same sex relationships and look you in the face and tell you that it’s not ‘gay’. That’s because it’s not. ‘Gay’ is a term that wasn’t invented in their culture. It was invented by Europeans/ Americans and assigned to others.
    People may feel justified in doing this, but don’t be surprised when you come against a lot of misunderstandings.

    I would like to see a separate queer Japanese, Jamaican, and Brazil critique.
    What Ellen is doing is admirable from a European American view.
    I’d hope European Americans realize that there is a difference between being a microphone and an interpreter. Even to know that you are shaping the story by who you question and what questions you ask.

    What’s one better is allowing other cultures to tell their own stories without the European American translation/filter. And having those stories make their way to the screens of European Americans.

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      I know this is obnoxious but
      I wanted to correct myself for calling Ellen American.
      Forgot she was Canadian.

      Also wanted to note that the article’s author is correct in suggesting that homophobia seen in other countries is partially a product of North Western colonialism.

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    I can definitely understand how you feel about seeing a character that you relate to but I’ve got 1 problem with this blog. That all I see are white people who attached labels to differentiate themselves from other white people who do discriminate but in most cases not against those who look like them. If we’re really being honest here people of color have it a lot worse. It’s even a running joke about how we die first in movies or TV while trying to escape death. When you combine that fact with the other fact jobs for us are limited and the roles offered are always putting us in a negative light,I resent the way y’all complain here and in other forms. All I’m saying is realize how blessed you actually are and know it could be worse. Instead of trying to make a sub-group of people stand up for a fair balance of quality roles of all people.

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      Know, that it’s not only white people caring about this issue. I have heard voices from many ethnicities and races who are outraged and disappointed about this situation. Please, keep that in mind.

      Also, the argument that there are worse things to worry about, I have heard many many times the last few weeks. Mostly from straight white guys in combination with “it’s just a show, get over it”, so I am a bit thrown off by the fact that I am reading this here.

      I agree with you in that there are worse problems to have, obviously, but as so many before me already pointed out: We can care about multiple issues at the same time.

      Moreover, this argument you will lose in any instance, because you can always find something which is worse. I don’t mean to be offensive, but I could counter your argument by stating that you should rather care about terrorism and what happened in Brüssel this week. This line of argumentation does not add to the conversation at hand at all.

      Please know, that we do care about other issues.

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        First thing in reference to the actual character role it’s a white female. Second to my point that I alluded to there are exactly 3 main characters of color and 2 secondary. Only 1 is seen in a positive light on the show and he’s in lock up which further promulgates the narrative of black men in lock up. Third to bring up you could negate my argument by finding something worse isn’t true 1 and it also is irrelevant by the simple fact that I said make sure that the system in which the actors roles get chosen and played out is fairly and justifiably distributed. We watch these shows and you can legitimately say you can find plenty of characters that you can relate to and look like you, me on the other hand maybe 1. Ask yourself this would you watch this show if most of the characters were black and the LGBT love interest was the same? How would you feel? Lastly until we as people clean up our hypocrisy nothing will ever truly change.

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          I don’t really understand the point you want to make. Let’s talk about it within the context of the show at hand. We are hypocritical because we care about the death of a female white gay character when there is misrepresentation of black characters?

          (1) If we talk about numbers and I let myself be picky, there actually never was a lesbian in the main cast as Costia, Lexia and Niylah were guest stars. However, I see Lexa as more than that, so there is one lesbian. But she was killed. I agree with your view on POCs, there are too few and they are partly handled poorly.

          (2) I didn’t mean to say that I could negate your argument of “you can always find something worse”. Quite the opposite, this statement is true in almost every instance. For every issue there is an issue which is worse. But that is exactly my point.

          What I wanted to convey is that this type of argument is not productive and does not add value to the conversation. For instance, I say I am unhappy because I cannot legally get married in my country, whereupon you say “how can you complain about that when global warming is real?”. This is an exaggeration, but I hope you get my point. There is no logical connection between those two issues, meaning the validity of one does not render the other one invalid. So whether I share your view of POCs, does not influence my view on LGBT characters.

          (3) “We watch these shows and you can legitimately say you can find plenty of characters that you can relate to and look like you.”
          How can you know that? Besides the fact that you don’t actually know how I look like, relating to a character is about more than just their appearance. At least for me it is.

          (4) “Ask yourself this would you watch this show if most of the characters were black and the LGBT love interest was the same? ”
          This kind of insinuates that I am racist? I prefer shows where I can find something to relate to part of which is lesbian representation. The same as you like to watch shows with POCs. How is that a bad thing? I don’t see the hypocrisy.

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            Jeanzi, it’s great that you’re trying to engage, but Josh isn’t going to listen to you/the LGBT community. I hope this doesn’t come across as condescending, and if it does I’m really sorry, but here goes:

            After Lexa died there was a clash between (white) LGBT viewers and POC who pointed out that LGBT fans were angry now that a white queer had died, but had happily ignored the fact that the show was a racist mess from the start, or had even tried to defend it. A few thoughtful, nuanced conversations happened, but mostly it was a lot of anger and resentment from both sides. “LGBT fans deserve better” became “Minorities are not disposable”, but by then I think it was too late for many people.

            I suspect the divide will not get any better, especially since the 100 will (most likely) kill off yet another POC character this season and LGBT fans will co-opt the anger and pain, leading to another round of “Oh so NOW you care” from POC. I honestly don’t know what could be done to make things better between the two groups at this point.

            Josh isn’t the right person to have this conversation with, though. This person is obviously trying to bait us. Someone who calls us “white people who attached labels to differentiate themselves from other white people” isn’t going to listen to anyone who doesn’t agree with them.

            As a side note, I’d love to see a post or an open thread on AS about having to “choose” between different parts of your identity when watching TV or movies, or reading books.

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            Anon- “Jeanzi, it’s great that you’re trying to engage, but Josh isn’t going to listen to you/the LGBT community.”

            Yes, this is the sense I’m getting from Josh’s remarks as well. The “problem” that Josh has with this blog is that it’s specifically geared toward the LGBT community. A community he seems to think isn’t legitimate or has a right to complain about anything because we are just “white people who attached labels to differentiate themselves from other white people”. Correct me if I’m wrong but that’s what I’m inferring from that particular dig.

            BTW, Josh not everyone here is white. Just saying. I’m black woman so I know pretty damn well how fandoms in general behave towards us in particular. Yes, POC characters get treated like shit on many shows. Especially this one. And that is something we need to continue to hold these shows and fandoms accountable for. But poor representation is a problem for LGBT characters of every ethnicity as well and that is also something that needs to be talked about. It’s not an either or situation here. We both have it pretty shitty and their are plenty of articles on this website that I can point you to that cover just that. Whether or not one has it worse doesn’t negate that their is a problem. You can care about the lack of representation for both. Especially since some of us here ARE both.

            Most women on tv don’t look like me and most women on tv also don’t have relationships with other women. And any time we do get these types of characters they either suffer from poor treatment from their writers and/or are hated by the audience. I’m going to keep complaining about both of these things(and I have for years) until I see some improvement on both fronts.

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            Just wanted to add that I didn’t want to sound like I was pitting white queer people and POC against each other, but rereading my previous answer that’s exactly what I did. I’m sorry; as turkish said it isn’t an either/or situation.

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            I wish for other people to listen and as I hold myself to the same standard, I am trying to engage. Even if it might be fruitless, as long as it is done in a respectful manner, I am happy to discuss.

            In this particular case, I really didn’t get the motives behind it, but as I’ve learned, what it’s basically come down to is queer people vs POC.

            I have read the article on AE (as I’m sure you have as well) and the sentiment I got from it was basically what Josh is saying. Whether it was intended by the writer or not, you know how that goes. Just look at the showrunner of The 100, lack of intent does not make you innocent. So I guess this is part of the clash you are referring to?

            I can only repeat myself and state that I care about multiple issues, LGBT and POC representation in this case, even if I am white and live in a country where there are not many people of color. So it’s for Josh to decide whether to open their mind or not.

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            Well, um. I’ll probably say something stupid again, but to put it briefly, I was referring specifically to the arguments that happened in the 100 fandom after Lexa died. But there is the larger problem in media of decent LGBT representation being usually white, and decent POC representation being usually straight.

            But yeah, that AE article absolutely tried to derail the conversation by pitting queer people against POC and it was gross. I’m glad people didn’t buy it. I hope that now that all these issues have been brought up, we’ll be able to ask for better representation for all marginalized groups going forward.

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            First off let me teach you all 1 thing never assume that someone is implying anything until they actually say it. It seems as if you’re trying to manipulate the argument.

            Now to say I implied you’re a racist is incorrect. I asked you a question that if you said no in response to it would make you prejudice first and foremost. Also to be a racist would mean you have an irrational fear of and hate someone of another race.
            As to me assuming that you’re not a person of color is to the fact that you have an inability to relate to my argument which is red flag #1
            #2 is simply by the fact that you are here voicing your frustration about a white lesbian character ending a role on a TV show where most of the characters are white. #3 when I said you could find characters you can relate to AND LOOK LIKE YOU, you responded with “relating to a character is about more than just appearance ” that let me know your being slightly cantankerous and despondent a sign you’re making an excuse.
            Lastly and I’m done after this. I will tell you how America is supposed to run. Here it’s all about majorities. When right wing whackos say Bernie Sanders is a Socialist and he’s trying to put everyone on welfare, that’s a misrepresentation of the truth. He’s doing exactly what the Constitution says people who run the government are supposed to look out for the general welfare of the population. That means that a minority doesn’t superceded as to getting taken care until each majority needs are fulfilled. When I mentioned hypocrisy this what I meant. If you want things to work in your favor you have to cover many who don’t. There are plenty of human beings who don’t have there rights and don’t have or are prevented the opportunity to participate in normal daily routines. You may not be able to get married but if you can’t vote which would supplement that cause it would be essentially null and void. To the point of this blog which is worried about another specific white character losing a job why should anyone care about you if a person of color can’t have the opportunity in the first place. For example if you are black and gay and a woman you’ll have it the worst but they’ll look at you being black first to discriminate against you. My proof of that is how is it out of all the people who want to be actors and actresses they couldn’t have found a black Lexa? I’ll say it again if you want your civil rights then make sure the majority that are being neglected have theirs first. In no ethnic groups in this world let alone The US is there a majority LGBT nor do they surpass 10% in each group. There is a 15% unemployment rate amongst black people vs 4.5% amongst white Americans. 50% of young people of color are unemployed 18-29 9% amongst young white Americans. You’re not going to like this but a job and voting rights are more important than marriage rights whether you’re gay or straight. Having income and a voice amongst 300million is logically more important than a title. So when I say that I don’t mean you can’t multitask but your priorities better be on point.

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            Okay Josh, first of all, you’re being incredibly condescending, cocky and rude, also you ramble. “another specific white character losing a job”? You mean a white actor? Lexa didn’t lose a job, dude; that’s hilarious.

            Let me offer you a tip; try structuring your arguments so they make sense. Check out how the other users are doing it! Rambling while throwing your weight around is really not the way to get your point across.

            And no, we will not take the backseat to what YOU decide are the priorities. How presumptuous and self-centered. My bet is you’re not part of the LGBT community – there are too many red flags, Josh – so what gives YOU the right to tell US what to do?

            We will continue to demand what we think is right while fighting all the other fights we deem worth fighting for. We don’t need you to validate our fight. The right to marry is so much more than a “title” (?), and our community has so many other problems that you CLEARLY know nothing about. It would be best if you educated yourself about a community you’re so incredibly ignorant about rather than attempting to herd us – that is typical male arrogance right there.

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            “First off let me teach you all 1 thing never assume that someone is implying anything until they actually say it. It seems as if you’re trying to manipulate the argument.”

            Well, the same could be said for someone trying to say something by not really saying it.

            I’m sorry for saying you implied that I am racist. I read between the lines where I shouldn’t have.

            I did neither say nor think that you assumed I was not a person of color. You claimed I could find plenty of characters that look like me, to which I responded that you could not know that because you don’t know how I look like which relates to my appearance. And appearance includes not only the skin color but every aspect of my physical representation. And I am telling you, based on that I do not relate to every white female on TV only because the is a lesbian. Thus, your claim that I can find plenty of representation on television is simply not accurate.

            I am so confused by you. You accuse me of manipulating the argument whereas it seems to me you highjacked this conversation to voice your frustration about politics.
            No one complained about “another white character losing their job”, we are talking about representation here while you get into a rant about civil rights. And I will not respond to your arguments about that because you have shown now multiple times that you don’t really care about my stance.

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            So, we need to take a seat and wait? We have to wait our turn? Set our priorities straight?

            This argument has several problems, particularly for you: “…a minority doesn’t superceded as to getting taken care until each majority needs are fulfilled”.

            Well, let’s use your logic, how much work are you doing for women’s rights, Josh? After all, women are 51% of the US population, so let’s fulfill their needs first: ERA it’s been going around Congress since 1923; you still have States trying to tell women what to do with their bodies, etc.

            I think that some white people also think that their rights are being neglected and they’re 62% of the US population. Clearly, this will put you a little farther in the waiting list.

            And let’s not forget that according to the latest Census and the population distribution by race/ethnicity, Black Americans are not the first minority, that place belongs to Hispanic and Latino Americans. Once again, get on the waiting line.

            I can’t believe that I just wrote that, because it goes against everything I am and every single value I have.

            The fight against discrimination, oppression, racism, economic and social inequality is not a competition based purely on numbers. And if you want to go that way and make it a competition, you’ll lose, because you will always throw part of your community down the bus.

            All your arguments showed me that you don’t really know how a democracy works. “Here it’s all about majorities” is the most stupid thing I’ve read in a while, because in a democracy the majority can’t be the “supreme power” just because of its number. And just as you were condescending enough to give us several advices as how we should behave and act, let me give you some reading advice: “Democracy in America” by Alexis de Tocqueville. Pay close attention to the chapter about “Tyranny of the Majority”, this will help to clearly understand that minorities, in any Democracy, should be protected.

            My final point it’s your little line about “You may not be able to get married…” Do you live in the US? Do you know what a fuck happened on June 26, 2015? Googled United States Supreme Court, Obergefell v. Hodges.

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            “My final point it’s your little line about “You may not be able to get married…” Do you live in the US? Do you know what a fuck happened on June 26, 2015? Googled United States Supreme Court, Obergefell v. Hodges.”

            This was in response to my comment where I wrote that I cannot get married where I live which is actually true.

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            I don’t really care that you like what I say but at least I can back it up with unbiased facts. Now check this out, North Carolina just passed a law to discriminate where LGBT specifically trans people can use public bathrooms etc.Worst part is they added stuff on this bill that has nothing to do with LGBT. Like you can’t sue employers if they discriminate against your race, no employer or any form of government in NC can have their minimum wage over 7.25 and they will not abide by Federal minimum wage policies. All and the voters can’t even vote new congressmen or government leaders in to change these laws, supposedly they’re permanent. They’ve taken away the power of the vote in NC and they’re trying to get back to Jim Crow south days.This the shit I have been referring to the whole time. Marriage equality isn’t a front burner issue because it doesn’t effect the majority of people whether you agree or not. I’m not trying to offend you I’m offering you wisdom so that you can get over the hump.Some of y’all here are trying to make me the enemy but you look real petty when what just said happens. Front burner issues are jobs,voting rights, health care, and housing. If those areas are being corrupted it takes away and eats into momentum of other civil rights movements. Example, the Civil rights movement of the 60’s opened the door for Harvey Milk and feminist movement but the feminist movement took 10 steps back because they discriminated against women of color. They had enough momentum to elect what should’ve been the first woman and black president Shirley Chisholm but they’re hypocrisy became a stalwart. Don’t repeat the same thing over again knowing it won’t work that’s insane. So if you can’t understand what I’m saying then take the time to gain wisdom not just knowledge. Knowledge is gained but Wisdom is the discernment of what to do with it. Have a blessed Easter fam.

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            It goes without saying that your opinion should not be shaped in any form by the way it might be perceived by others, this would be a disservice to your arguments.

            I don’t need you to give me wisdom to get over the hump, I just don’t agree with your arguments.

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            Ugh
            Josh is just a yucky person in general.
            Wrong is wrong. Just because there are other wrong things happening, doesn’t make lexis death any less wrong, or more okay because she’s white.
            The 100 has tons of race issues, at least they had Lexa going for them.
            Stop being divisive Josh.
            I personally loved Lexa, and her cute unicorn ways.
            I’m a black queer lady and I saw myself in Lexa.
            Yes we need more POC representation. We don’t need less of a reaction to Lexa dying, we need more of a reaction to everything else.

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            Now you didn’t say this but someone goes “Josh is a yucky person ” I’m like this whole time no one has demeaned anyone but you called me “yucky ” lol
            No I noticed that when I gave you proof of what I was talking about you summarily dismissed it, why?
            As far as me being divisive well in no way is expressing my views, facts, and thoughts causing division amongst you all if anything this going as it was meant to be a forum for discussion and if you can’t deal with that (not you Jeanzi) then you’re a childish facetious bigot.

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    I’m not quite understanding the angst over Lexa’s death. Trust me, watching her and Clarke kiss…ect, phenomenal. I was bummed when she died. As a fan of Sci fi…I have loved how the 100 has incorporated people loving people, whatever their outsides. As a reader, it seemed to me that Lexa’s death was inevitable if the connection between the Polaris and Grounders was to be made, as well the furthering of the psycho AI story. Lexa spoke of her death SO many times. Why was it a surprise? And why does everything have to be about…how dare they kill the lesbian chick. Yikes!

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        Ok I read. I guess I just never assumed that because she was an amazing, thoughtful, forward thinking, tough, strong LEADER…that just happened to be a lesbian…..that she couldn’t be killed. The 100 is nothing if not excessively violent….
        It’s depiction of a post-apocalyptic world is new and potentially possible. It’s an utterly fantastic STORY. I do not follow any of the social media surrounding the actors or the writers…thats just not who I am. It’s an escapist Sci fi show that is amazing in its depth and breadth. As a 51 yr old woman who just happens to be a lesbian…neither Lexa, nor Clarke, nor Clarke’s mother have stopped being women I can admire and emulate. Each has a quiet strength and fierce warrior nature….I don’t care who they fuck. I must say, this has always been the sticking point for me and relating to the LGBTQ community. I have been out for 30 years and I don’t care who you fuck. I relate to PEOPLE….based on their character, personality, dreams and ambitions. Adding a new letter to the community has not made it more inclusive…it just excludes everyone else and all those who haven’t figured out out which convenient little box they fit into.
        I am fucking ecstatic that for a little while the 2 strongest people on that show, happened to fall in love and spent an amazing night together. How many of us get even that? They KNEW they were loved, but were driven to protect each of their larger communities. They worked for the greater good of everyone, not just their letter. Lexa, warrior woman, earthly goddess….fight on my sweet.

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    Well it seems you are one of the few that truly are able to watch the show in a vacuum. From this stand point I can see why you don’t get the whole upset.

    However, many of us are not in that position so it becomes less about the narrative and more about the social context.

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      I believe that instead of focusing on SAYING “I didn’t get this” and “We don’t have that” and “It’s not fair”….all on the Internet where you are locked into your own tiny little communities that say what you want to hear anyway……how about participating in the real world and acting like fully enfranchised citizens. Demonstrating through word and deed that to do anything else but consider myself, the person I am, irregardless of who i fuck, as whole and fully capable and deserving of consideration and respect…as perfectly ludicrous. Telling people what they should believe….because that’s what you believe to be right???? IsNT that what so many of you are fighting against???
      I have never considered myself a minority or disenfranchised. Thus no one else considers me in that light. They may not like me as a person, but it’s not because of who I fuck.

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        I am not telling anyone what to believe. In fact, isn’t it you who just told me what I should and should not do?

        You don’t get the upset, that’s fine. But how about letting other people decide for themselves how they want to engage?

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          Nope. That is your interpretation. I never said you must do this or you should. I said how about. Examples, given from my experience. This a story on TV. But I’ve never once seen Lexa or Clark whine. They go out and do something. Make changes, lead through example. You are right, I do not understand the existential angst “your community” displays. But thank you for the discussion

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            Hmmmm…I did not mean that in a deragatory sense. Just that if I were to rank my membership in a community, who and how I see myself, human, american, ect…LGBTQ is quite low on list. I personally have watched go from just G…to LG…God FORBID at that time you were B….ect ect. So although I more than qualify….I respectfully decline

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